Part 17: The Enthusiastic Progress ClubUpdate 7 The Enthusiastic Progress Club
We head over to Sytenko's empty meatshop.
We try knocking on the door, but...
Hello! Anyone in there?
I remember seeing a door right around the corner. Maybe it's connected to the meatshop.
Damn it. I wish Department P had given me a lockpick. Ah well. I'll go back and talk to Sytenko.
We knock on door 6.
I'm a private detective and I'd like to ask you a few questions.
I'm investigating a criminal organization based in this building.
I intend on talking to all the residents,
Perhaps you've noticed unusual behaviour?
You look like the type that misses nothing.
I've noticed nothing. Try asking the Ulyanovs in apartment 1.
Maybe Ryumin was on to something. Sytenko definitely seemed too defensive. I think he's hiding something, but I'll put that particular thread on hold for a moment. Next stop the Enthusiastic Progress Club. But first, I'd better get rid of the clipboard before someone recognizes it as stolen property.
We unceremoniously dump the clipboard on the floor.
Forgive me. I left my card at home.
I was only joking! Allow me to contribute to club funds!
I, uh, fixed it with Yuri downstairs.
Aha! Well, that's most definitely a consideration...
How about $40?
Welcome to the Enthusiastic Progress Club, sir. My name is Valeri Andreivich. Allow me to serve you some of our best vodka, courtesy of the establishment.
Tough-looking crowd here tonight. Including some familiar faces.
A crafty young fellow but weak. Without his hefty partner, he wouldn't amount to very much.
Not too smart but he's clearly necessary to his friend.
I saw those two thugs in the apartment earlier.
The other's twin brother.
Those twins give me the shivers.
He seems to think he's managing a 5 star hotel!
The manager probably knows something about his customers. Maybe he'll share.
A classy setup you have here.
We find it congenial, sir.
Ask for...a drink
Have a drink on me!
Deeply touching of you, sir.
We have another drink.
Ugh. Not again. <hic>
Ask about...the club
A quiet place, sir, as you can see. Normally reserved for people in private enterprise activity.
I used to manage a public sanitary convenience. My skills led me to being employed as the manager of this exclusive club. The owners appear satisfied.
Ask about...the club's owners
This is where they dry-clean their misgotten rubles, eh?
We offer no such service to our members, sir.
Talk about...local private enterprise
A serious subject, sir. Well beyond my managerial competence.
Talk about...the past
Such complex issues! I'm sure your views would interest many of our members.
Ask about...some gambling action round here
I'd mingle with the other members if I were you, sir.
All right, I can take a hint. Maybe that punk over by the window knows something.
Inspect the punk
A skinny fellow with crafty eyes.
He's a shady-looking fellow, but he probably knows something about the criminal underworld.
May I join you?
Long as you don't bore me, grandad.
He's an obnoxious one.
Ask about...the other members
Why do you come, then?
Business, old one.
That little shit. I'm only 25!
Any people with serious money?
What do they buy?
They've got money, so they buy expensive product.
Are they here now?
You sound like law, old man. Smell bad too. My advice is relax.
Damn it. Does he know?
Ask for...a light
No. Against my principles.
Are you selling?
What've you got?
And information? You deliver that too?
I'm not sure why 'businessmen' is spelled that way, to be honest.
I'd like to know about any important biznessmen around here.
Can't help, grandad.
Talk about...drug abuse in Moscow
Don't you think hard drugs destroy people?
Alcohol kills people, war, Chernobyl. They're the killers, grandad.
Maybe he has a point, but I'm done talking to him. Let's see... When I first walked in here, someone waved at me. I don't want to keep him waiting.
Inspect the young hustler
This is the character who caught your attention when you came into the club. His eyes are friendly and intelligent.
Well, seems like he might be worth talking to.
Nice to see you. New here?
First time. And you?
I sometimes come in, see if there's any action.
Not much. I'm patient.
Let me tell you. I deal in high quality foreign films. On video cassette. How would you like The Maltese Falcon? You won't find this in any damn state store.
The Maltese what?
You'll love it. The Maltese Falcon. A classic!
Sounds like a stupid movie.
No culture! Fed on communist propaganda!
Uncultured? Not true! I like some western stuff, like James Bond... Wait a second. The contact's codename is Hollywood, and this guy sells American movies. That could be related.
I'm Buyer 2.
Pleased to meet you. I'm Video. You really should buy this tape, you know.
He didn't recognize the code phrase. Guess he isn't Hollywood.
Ask about...his job
I buy and sell, when I can. To hell with communist bureaucrats!
Care for a drink?
No thanks, I've had enough. I'm just waiting around.
Talk about...the film industry
Investment's what's needed. If I could find some backers! The west is drowning in films that the Russian public would pay to see. With money, I could import thousands of excellent products, open a gigantic store. Progress is too slow! Communists everywhere!
Ask for...a cigarette
That was nice of him.
Crime's just a word! What's legal today isn't tomorrow and vice versa. An illegal film would be legal today if those politicians would do things instead of talking. Look at Gorbachev, running round in circles trying to hold things together when he should be opening up the country to capitalist progress!
A lot of people rag on Gorbachev for moving too fast with perestroika, but this guy's the opposite.
Business has to be illegal here if you want to make money and take the opportunities. Bureaucracy's choking us to death! That's why I'm in this club now, hoping for some gangster to show up and help me get things moving.
So he's not a gangster himself. Or so he says.
Ask about...someone called Hollywood
Interesting you should mention that name! I can sell you a classic American movie, perfectly copied to video tape, The Maltese Falcon. Exclusive!
Let's see. For you, my friend, 5 American dollars only.
Well, it's pretty cheap. Plus, the guy gave me his last cigarette. Can't hurt.
A wise choice!
Ask about...the other members
I know that some are involved in my line of business, but who they are I don't know. I wish I did. I need backers to expand my business. Communists don't understand that.
This club gets more depressing every time I come! Careful who you talk to! The ugly twins in the other room, for instance; if I were you, I'd steer clear of them. They belong to a gang that hangs around here and they're mean. They're called Gleb and Oleg. The other clients are harmless. Except for the two punks; they're in the other room too. Pair of street muggers!