Mr. Packard set his hand on Florida's chest. "Half of them can barely swing a golf club, like Pink over there, but their half-dollar Nassau, or whatever it is, it's still the reason everybody else was put here on earth," he said. Pink looked up at the insult but didn't say nothing.
Mr. Packard thought about things a minute, then did that chuckle again. "I guess they're old and they feel it slipping away," he said. "Maybe it doesn't seem possible to a kid your age, but it does slip away."
The fat man poured himself another drink.
Train looked at Florida again. It was true that he couldn't see himself laid out across the sixth green dead, still trying to smile, but he already knew he could be laid out somewhere. He'd known that a long time. He sat down to put on his shoes.
"So what are we supposed to do here?" the fat man said.
Mr. Packard said, "I think I'll wait. I think I'll sit here and wait until somebody comes and takes care of this man's body."
The ambulance rolled over the hill with the light flashing but no siren, leaving tire marks in the fairway. The members wouldn't like it when they found out who it was for. Mr. Packard stood close and watched them load Florida into the back, and then closed the back door himself, making sure it was shut tight. Nobody wanted to see Florida slide back out onto the golf course.
The fat man carried his own bag awhile and then quit at the turn, said he'd lost his timing waiting for the ambulance. "Maybe I can get a couple of players, we can come back out Thursday or Friday," he said. Players meant gamblers. Brookline itself had the oldest membership of any course in Southern California, average 73 years old, and the richest, and probably the cheapest. You didn't commonly see big stakes unless somebody brought in outside money.
Mr. Packard didn't seem to care one way or the other. He just appear tired of the whole situation. "Whatever you want," he said.
The fat man went into his pocket and came out with a roll of bills. There were rules against gambling at Brookline, but then, there were rules against everything. Probably against carrying guns, if anybody thought of it yet. The only rules that counted, though, were who could play and what they could wear. And time, of course. Time was important. "What do I owe you?" he said.