"If that's what's bothering you, forget the bet," Mr. Packard said. "We're just hacking it around today anyway."
"No," the fat man said. "F—no, a bet is a bet." Train heard in his voice how bad he wanted to win, and knew then the way it would turn out. You wanted something too much, it never came.
Florida was sweating. He'd set his bag down and was standing beside it, looking out of focus. The fat man pulled the thermos out again and had another drink. Loose lips sink ships, that was an expression he heard out here too. Fat lips sink ships. Train liked the sound of that. Mr. Packard was watching the fat man too, and then he looked around and seem to chuckle again without making noise and said, "You know, Pink, I been thinking maybe we ought to call it a day."
"I never said I didn't want to play," the fat man said. He was eager to clear up the misunderstanding, couldn't get his feet under him fast enough. "I only said this f———kid's spooky, is all," he said. "I didn't mean nothing about you. I just want to switch caddies at the turn."
"Fine with me," Mr. Packard said, "unless the boy's gotten too attached to you to change sides." And then he looked over at Train and winked.
So Train and Florida traded bags, and Florida stumbled backward under the new weight, then caught himself, rattling the clubs.
"Now I got a problem with you?" the fat man said, trying to make it all a joke again.
"No sir," Florida said. "I just eventuated to lost my balance."
The fat man bust out laughing at that—eventuated—and somehow the word changed everything. One word, and the game was relaxed and easy, and Train's troubles with the fat man seemed like the grudges mat people hold without remembering what they were about, the kind they just kept there to occupy the space. Harmless. The sun was warm and the air smelled sweet and the new bag was lighter and comfortable against his shoulder, and five minutes later Florida was on the way to the next world.
He'd set the fat man's bag down beside the green, taken a handkerchief out of his back pocket and wiped at his neck, and then smiled in a peculiar way, a confusion passing over his face, and then pitched onto the ground.