There wasn't much to look at. I mean it wasn't bad -- it just looked old fashioned. I mean nothing was shiny or black or new looking. It was freshly painted in semi gloss white and smelled like it had just been done. Industrial strength gray carpet, a counter that ran the length of the back wall, one potted plant, I thought was a nice touch, a ficus was my guess, and no inventory.
My new BFF was beaming, he said, "Nice isn't it?"
"What was this place?"
"A Chinese carryout. Don't worry. Most of the rats are gone."
"Before or after they closed?"
He looked puzzled and then burst out laughing. Real laughing too. Not the fake ass three guffaws and a face twitch. "What's your name snowflake?"
"Dakota" Then I causally added, "What's yours Remus?"
I saw the flash of anger in his eyes and thought, "Fuck you. I got cable. I know what a snowflake is." He covered it and went for the mock with, "Ooooo....hit a nerve did I?"
"It's James. Not Jim. James."
"Okay James. You know what's going on here and does the heat work?"
"Yeah. Let me turn it up. You want a tour and I'll tell you what I know and what you're going to be doing?"
"Sure. Where's the inventory?"
"Tomorrow." He gestured grandly and said, "This is the showroom as you can see." I nodded when he looked at me. I thought I would keep my mouth shut until I saw what we had.
This is the sales counter, I think we'll do a nice little display in the window, and through here is the bathroom, that will be private, the homeless can go piss at McDonald's or in the alley." We walked through a narrow hallway with even narrower stairs, and walked past what must of been a bedroom, "And this is the storeroom" he pointed at a closed door, I found out later it was a closet, "And this room will be our workshop." I stuck my head in the door instead of following him in, a couple of bookshelves and a table was all that was there. "Back here we have the kitchen and our backyard."
"Very nice. I like the barbwire." He shrugged. Pull up a chair and let's talk."
"Does the refrigerator work?"
"No reason." I was already planning on keeping some beer here. He told me, "You can use it but don't touch my stuff."
I ignored that. "What's upstairs?"
"My apartment." He got stone faced when he said it. I didn't bother asking to take a peak. "Stay out unless you're invited."