FOREIGN EXCHANGE by Nick Hahn, due 2014

New York was hot for early October, the air hung-over from summer giddiness, thick and wet not yielding to fall’s cleansing embrace.

NickHahn_ForeignExchange200Sally and I were in the city to see the new blockbuster at the Met, we were crossing Fifth Ave at 82nd Street when I saw him. He had changed, there was a slight limp and his left arm hung from his shoulder like a rag doll. He was wearing sun glasses, a nylon bomber jacket, jeans in the wrong wash and a Yankees cap. Omar was as handsome as I’d remembered; almost 6 feet, slim and muscular with dark olive skin, black hair, deep brown eyes and 4 days of beard growth. There was no mistaking him, this was the jihadist, the killer, the man ready to give me up in a stinking safe house on the Hindu Kush Afghan border three years ago. My heart slammed against my chest, how was it possible he was still alive, walking the streets of New York?

He didn’t see me, I pulled down the sun glasses propped on top of my head and turned my face towards Sally keeping him on my peripheral vision.

I had to report the sighting, Omar was not in NY to see the sights or was he?

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