The Hustle by J. B. Stevens

Punk Noir Magazine

Liam was morally flexible, but only in the most rigid of ways. It helped when he worked a mark. 

Tonight’s bar, The Black Cat, floated like a Raymond Chandler fever-dream and the world was piss-yellow. 

“Buy you a drink?”

The guy wasn’t handsome… but his wedding-ring-tan was prominent. The Rolex looked cherry and ripe and ready. 


JFK yammered on the tube and the cheap motel room felt moist. 

The cheater snored. Liam wrote a note.


You tell the cops—I tell your wife.




The pawn shop’s manager said the Rolex was fake. Liam glided to the next adventure.



J.B. Stevens lives in the Southeastern United States with his wife and daughter.

 His writing has been featured in Mystery Tribune, Criminal Element, Tough Crime, Out of the Gutter, Close To The Bone, Thriller Magazine, Punk Noir Magazine, The Dead Mule School of Southern Literature, and numerous other publications.

 He can be found online at and