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"Thanks, these are great," I said before dropping them onto an armchair.
"We should get going," he said. "It's better to do it when it's light out. People don't really watch you then."
I followed him down to the garage. I was around to the passenger side when he turned back to the house. "I'll be right back. I have to get some staples," he said. He shut the door behind him.
Standing there in the garage by myself, I felt the first creep of suspicion. Had I given myself away somehow? Had he traced my cell-phone number? I hoisted the garage door and let the light in. If he was going to come back waving a gun, at least he'd have to shoot me in public.
He returned holding the staples and a CD case. As we drove away, he asked me if I knew much racialist music. "You should try this," he said. The CD case he handed me, for a band called Day of the Sword, included an illustration of a butchered pig wearing a yarmulke.
Trentadue's methods of literature distribution were simple. At 7:30 p.m., we parked next to a Subway restaurant, and he pointed at a Pitch box. "I'll hit this one," he said. "If you do it in the daytime, no one pays any attention. People normally don't pay attention to things, and you use that." He walked to the box, pulled out every Pitch and walked back to the car in less than 20 seconds. Exactly as he had described, no one even looked at him. The two of us sat in the car and stuffed the issues with Nazi propaganda. Then he reinserted the tainted copies.
Half the time, he would pull the passenger side of the car a foot away from a box. Without any reasonable cause to refuse, I got out and brought back the papers, then replaced them with fliers inserted. We hit five more boxes before Trentadue decided that we should staple the remaining fliers onto utility poles.
During all of this, Trentadue kept a running commentary on the Pitch. If I wasn't being paid to lie to the guy, I'd have thought he was paranoid. All this talk about my employer added to my fear that he somehow knew I worked for the Pitch and was just messing with me for the moment.
At the same time, I had to admit that there was a certain adrenaline rush to it all. During those few seconds walking between the car and the Pitch box, I wondered if anyone was going to ask why I need 50 copies of a newspaper. Trentadue was right. People don't pay attention.
Then again, neither did Trentadue or Turk. Asking me a few questions about myself might have unraveled the whole thing. But for the most part, the Klansmen had been remarkably self-centered. All except for one terrible moment when we parked at the day's last Pitch box.
"What do you do for a living, anyway?" he asked.
"I came into Kansas City on a media communications internship, then that ended. So I'm kind of between things right now." This was all true, but he never asked me which media company.