Memorial Day

Free Memorial Day by Vince Flynn

Book: Memorial Day by Vince Flynn Read Free Book Online
Authors: Vince Flynn
Tags: thriller, det_political
net worth was conservatively estimated at a billion dollars.
    Holmes paid a small army of accountants and lawyers to keep his complete financial picture a mystery from both the government and the prying press. His real net worth was actually in excess of two billion dollars, much of that tied up in land deals on four of the seven continents and large holdings in banks and insurance companies. Holmes subscribed to the creed that information was power, and that was why he went to such lengths to hide the intricacies of his significant fortune.
    When he entered the steakhouse, there was a flurry of activity. Holmes was tall, just under six and a half feet, and in relatively good shape, considering how much he liked food and drink. He was in his early fifties with a slight double chin and a bit of gut that was well disguised by tailored dress shirts and handmade suits.
    The ass kissing ensued almost immediately. The general manager was on hand at the front of the restaurant as well as the head chef, the wine steward, and a buxom blond hostess who was Holmes's favorite. It was nothing for Holmes to drop five or ten grand in an evening. He liked his wine and he liked it expensive.
    "Patrick," the general manager thrust his hand forward, "thank you for gracing us with your presence."
    "My pleasure, David." Holmes had a gift for remembering people's names. He said hello to the other two men and then gave the hostess a big hug and a kiss on the cheek.
    "Still only two of you tonight?" asked the general manager.
    "Yes, in fact here comes my dinner partner right now."
    Peggy Stealey came walking across the bar in high-heel shoes, chic black pants, and a sapphire blouse. She held a glass of chardonnay in one hand and her purse in the other. Her blond hair was pulled back in a ponytail that called attention to her high cheekbones and aqua blue eyes. Practically every guy in the place stopped what he was doing and watched her move across the room.
    Holmes extended his hands and placed them on her cheeks, as Stealey pursed her lips and offered them to the chairman of the Democratic National Committee. Holmes gave her mouth a quick peck and then turned to make sure his guest had met everyone. She had, on at least three other occasions, but it didn't bother her that Holmes didn't remember. It was his nature to bring people together as part of the Pat Holmes festival of life. He befriended everyone from the busboys to the president. Holmes loved people and they loved him back.
    The hostess led them to Holmes's usual table. It offered just enough privacy while still affording the chairman a good view of the restaurant. Along the way Holmes slapped backs, shook hands, said hello to a few of the wait staff, and introduced Stealey to several lobbyists.
    The man did not know how to have a bad time. People were drawn to him. There were some, for sure, who disagreed with his party of choice and thought him a bit gluttonous, but his champions far outweighed his detractors. Holmes was a breath of fresh air for a party that was desperately in need of new ideas and new leadership. Unfortunately, that was not why he'd been pegged to oversee the upcoming national election. First, and foremost, running the DNC was about raising money, and Holmes had both New York and L.A. covered. Secondly, it was about settling disputes and massaging egos, and there were no bigger egos than the ones on Capitol Hill. Holmes knew how to make people feel valuable. Lastly, the job involved kicking some ass, and although Holmes was a pretty level-headed guy, he was results-oriented and if you didn't get him what he wanted he showed you the door.
    Holmes sat down and looked at Stealey's nearly finished glass of wine. "Am I late?"
    "No. It was a long day, and I needed a drink, so I got here a little early."
    "Nothing wrong with that." Holmes loved to imbibe. On cue a waiter showed up at the table with the chairman's usual; a lowball glass filled with ice, Belvedere vodka, and

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