And here's Steven Linder in his tighty-whities again, thank God. This time he's in his apartment -- which also contains a lizard in a tank, further highlighting his affinity for reptiles -- and doing some ironing. Because a guy with those sideburns who pours bottled water on his feet in the desert clearly has exacting grooming standards. Hector, or Calaca, or whatever I'm going to decide to call him from now on, just walks right into the room, to Linder's obvious and justifiable alarm. He hisses, "Where's Eva?" Linder tries to play dumb, but Calaca, reaching for the strangulator at his belt, says, "I need her back."
You'd think that after his last hand-to-hand engagement with an unarmed woman he'd be a little more careful about taking on a guy with a hot iron in his hand, even if the woman looked tougher. You'd also think Linder would want to hold onto that iron, but he drops it as he tries (and fails) to get away. Soon the cord is around Linder's neck and Calaca is pulling it tight. You're not going to get much info out of him that way, Calaca. They grapple on the floor a minute, but Linder manages to get his hands back on that iron, which he uses to first clobber and then brand Hector's face, before bashing him on the skull three more times. How very fortunate for Linder that he likes a sharp crease.
Linder's good fortune has its limits, however; with immaculate timing, Ruiz has just showed up in the hallway outside, and is knocking on the door and calling Linder's name. Linder removes the noose from around his neck, puts the iron back on its board, and drags Calaca a few feet into a closet -- concealing him from absolutely nothing -- before going to the door. Linder opens it only as wide as the security chain will allow. Through the crack, Ruiz asks to come in. "I'd rather you didn't. Kind of a mess," Linder says, truthfully enough.
Also, he's in his underwear. Ruiz says he remembers what Linder said to him a few days ago about helping people. "Are you helping anyone now?" That's a remarkably astute question, considering what Linder turned out to be up to with Eva Guerra. Inside the apartment, Calaca is slowly coming around, but not moving much. As you'd expect from someone who just took four hard blows to the head from an electric iron and isn't in a movie.
Linder reminds Ruiz that he works at the shelter. "You go over the bridge a lot?" Ruiz asks. "Some," Linder allows, probably knowing that Ruiz can check, if he hasn't already. "Twelve times last month," Ruiz does indeed say. Linder claims to like Mexican food (cosigned), but Ruiz says no white person goes into Juarez that often unless they're up to something. "Like what?" Linder asks. Ruiz says he's going to find out. Linder looks terrified, and not just of Ruiz, but he manages to sound almost cheery as he says, "Oookay."