Category Archives: Donald Glass

Dyin’ Down The Road

Lifting his foot off the gas the car slowed to a safer speed. He was still driving faster than his brother would have liked but he heard no complaints. The last time he’d been out of the city his brother Tom had been with him.

+++++“Turn right up ahead,” Tom’s voice whispered from the back seat, disconnected and far away.

+++++Rounding the corner Bill glanced in the rearview and looked away. His knuckles cracked as he gripped the wheel and thought about what lies ahead. Rain beat un-rhythmically off the windshield, a stark contrast to the steady rhythm of the wipers. It had been raining the last time he was out to the Ansie’s.

+++++That night his world had turned to shit. Tom took two slugs in the back. Bill had one clip his shoulder, superficial no big deal. They had barely escaped, Bill dragging his brother along. Tonight it would be different. The element of surprise was on his side.

+++++“You sure you wanna do this bro?” Tom’s voice crept in his ear.

+++++“I gotta.”

+++++“No… you don’t.”

+++++“Yeah I do. Eye for an eye, know what I mean? Family is all you got in life, without you I got nothing. I gotta make things right, and you can’t talk me out of it.”

+++++The air chilled inside the car.

+++++“You gotta plan little brother?”

+++++“Yeah, I’m gonna knock on the door and shoot the first fucker that opens it and keep shooting till they’re all dead.”

+++++Silence hung in the air as he traced his way along the woods bordering the Anise’s place. He parked and glance at the rear view mirror before getting out, half expecting some words of encouragement. Outside the car he stretched and looked skyward. Bill hated the country. He preferred the yellow moon on every street corner, opposed to the single soulless eye that dipped in the sky outside of the city.

+++++“Back in a few,” he said to the night and walked away.

+++++Minutes passed. The rain slowed to a trickle. Briefly the quiet of the countryside erupted in a storm of gunfire. As quickly as it had started it stopped.

+++++Bill stumbled through the brush, branches scratching his face and tearing his clothes. One hand pressed on the gaping hole in his gut, trying to slow the flow of blood. He climbed into the car and fumbled with the keys.

+++++“You did good little brother. It’s time to go.”

+++++The car jerked and shot forward. Bill drove as blood soaked through his shirt and pants and into the seat. Erratically the car swerved along the winding road. With one hand on the wound trying to staunch the flow, his vision blurred and then doubled. The car drifted and stopped on the roads berm. Taking shallow breaths Bill desperately tried to stop the bleeding.

+++++“I’m dying Tom…please help me,” he said to the empty rearview.

+++++He knew Tom couldn’t help; he’d bled out on the drive home the last time. As the life seeped out of him he felt himself being slid over and his head propped gently against the passenger side window.

+++++“C’mon little brother let me drive for a while. You sit and relax, close your eyes.” Tom’s voice whispered in his ear, clear for the first time.

+++++“I’m getting cold Tom.”

+++++“It’s okay, you’ll be warm soon. Home is just a little further up the road.”

Perfect Timing

James Arlen Roth took something from me, something important. Her name was April. We were going to be married in the Spring. She’d said that was the best time to get married, and who was I to argue. We set the date and made all the arrangements. Then along came James.
+++++He walked into the store where April worked at 9:47 PM and walked out at 9:53, he left with $142.36. In six minutes this man changed my life and ended hers. She didn’t die right away. It took some time. Slowly she bled out on the dirty floor behind the counter. A customer walked into the store at 10:17 and found her still alive. April was a fighter, but she’d lost too much blood and died before the ambulance got there.
+++++James Arlen Roth put us on a collision course. He set in motion something that neither of us can stop.
+++++The only evidence the prosecution had was video evidence from several different cameras. One from inside the store showed someone wearing a ski mask. He entered the store and pulled a gun, revealing a rose tattoo on his right hand. April gave him all the money in the register. She cooperated and he shot her anyway, and then calmly walked out. Videos from outside, at an ATM machine and a pawn shop entrance, showed a man the same build and height wearing the exact same clothes. These videos also showed a face, the face of James Arlen Roth and they showed a rose tattoo on his right hand.
+++++His lawyer argued that while his client, who was gainfully employed and had no reason to commit such a heinous crime, was in the area at the time of the robbery. He didn’t commit the crime. Anyone could have been wearing clothes that were similar.
+++++The tattoo that sold me on his guilt also helped get him off.
+++++James had gotten the tattoo when he was nineteen, just a kid. He was in a street gang and the tattoo was part of the gang’s colors. His lawyer then showed the jury mug shots of other members and pictures of their tattoos. Each one had the same rose on their right hand. He argued that anyone of them could have committed the crime.
+++++The most valuable part of his defense was that Jimmy appeared to be walking casually and in no hurry. Wouldn’t a man who just robbed a convenience store and shot a clerk be in a hurry or perhaps even running away from the scene? All the evidence was circumstantial. The jury found him not guilty. I don’t care what the jury says, he’s guilty and we both know it.
+++++For James life went on. For me life fell apart and became all about James. The countdown had started.
+++++After his acquittal I followed him for three months getting to know his routine, his timing. I studied every facet of his life. I could tell you where he is going to be and what he is going to be doing at almost any given minute. From poker games on Wednesdays and his once a month haircut, to the two women he’s seeing. I know more about him than he knows about himself.He’s regular, like clockwork. This is all information I need to know to do what I have to do.
+++++I’m ready. Tonight’s the night.I’ve decided to wait outside of the Highlight Club and do it when he gets into his car. It sounds easy but there is always a chance of something going wrong. Timing is the most important thing. Today is Wednesday, he’ll leave alone. He left alone last Wednesday and the previous three.
+++++The Highlight Club is a seedy strip joint. It’s located off of the downtown express way and across from Smitty’s convenience store. Set back along the property line all parking for the club is up front and along the roadside, well lit.
+++++I drove downtown, obeying the speed limit. I’ve always been a law abiding person. Pulling into the Smitty’s I glanced across the street over to The Highlight’s parking lot. His car was there, a 67 Mustang Fastback. I knew it would be. I grabbed a cup of coffee and a donut and waited until two thirty, last call.
+++++People started to exit the club. Knowing James would be one of the last to leave I crossed the street and lingered outside in the parking lot. I shook, a little from the cold but more from the chore before me. The lot slowly emptied.
+++++At 3:05 he walked out, like clockwork. Wearing his customary leather jacket and gold chain around his neck he looked like the thug I knew he was.
+++++Walking to his car I fell in step a few paces behind him. He looked bigger this close up. It must be his gym routine-three nights a week- he never misses a workout.
+++++“Hey Asshole,” I called out.
+++++“What’d you call me?” he said and swung around fast, taking a defensive stance.
+++++I’m not a big man by any stretch of the imagination, weak some might call me, non threatening. A smile crept on his face. He didn’t even recognize the man who sat behind him in a courtroom every day for three weeks.
+++++“Listen buddy you’re gonna be in a world of hurt if you don’t turn around and walk away right now. I have things to do,” he said and turned his back on me.
+++++“I know. You’re going to play poker, uptown at Sid’s Café, or is that on Fridays?”
+++++It knew it wasn’t on Fridays, it was tonight.Slowly he turned, surveying the situation as he did.
+++++“What did you say?”
+++++I stood my ground and smiled. “No, you’re going to see Angela. Does Marie know about Angela? Does Marie’s husband know about you?”
+++++“What the fuck?”
+++++“What about April, do you remember her?”
+++++My smile disappeared. This was the moment I’d been heading toward since he walked out of the court room three months ago.He looked in my eyes and suddenly knew who I was.
+++++“Why’d you do it? She gave you what you wanted. Why did you kill her?”
+++++He smiled but said nothing. Seeing the smug look on his face I could feel the rage building inside of me. I touched the outside of my jacket pocket. His eyes darted from my eyes to my hand and back. Fifteen feet separated us, too far for him lunge. I reached into my jacket pocket. At the same moment he reached for the bulge under his coat. I’d seen the bulge before, a shoulder holster. He always wore it.
+++++I’d practiced this a thousand times standing in front of a mirror, like De Niro in Taxi Driver or an old time western.I knew how fast I could draw. I didn’t know how fast he would be.
+++++Time slowed. I could see his jaw clench and brow furrow as his hand slipped into his coat. I imagined his thumb flicking the snap off his holster as my hand slid into my pocket a second faster than his. Fluidly his gun slipped out and arm extended as my hand was just exiting my pocket. He was too fast. I knew he would be, but when you have nothing left, you have nothing to lose.
+++++His hand seemed to explode as his gun went off. The slug hit me squarely in the chest, shattering my sternum and tearing through a lung. The impact threw me back and my body slammed to the ground. When I opened my eyes James stood over me, his gun pointed at my face. My hand, finally free of my pocket, went to my chest, still clutching the only thing that had been inside of it, a picture of April.
+++++I coughed through a bloody smile. As life drained out of me I and turned my head to Smitty’s. A police car had just pulled into the lot, same as last night and the night before.

Yard Work

Listen instead!
Listen instead!

“This is so unfair,” Derrick grumbled to himself, as he pulled the rake from the garage.
+++++He wouldn’t even be in this mess if it wasn’t for his little brother Ricky. Sure he’d broken Mrs. Morrison’s window, but no one would ever have known if Ricky hadn’t tattled on him. Now he was going to be short two weeks allowance, and have to spend his whole Saturday raking and bagging leaves, when he could be inside playing Call of Duty. This was just one more reason to hate his little brother, who was perfect in his parent’s eyes. Ricky could do no wrong as far as they were concerned.
+++++The yard was huge with high hedges along both sides and a privacy fence across the back, separating the yard from a small wooded area. Three large maples bordered the rear of the property. They were almost barren, only a few splashes of color were left hanging delicately on their branches. The fencing ensured that all but the fewest of leaves became trapped inside. The weather had been windy and had blown the majority of the leaves to the back fence. It made his job much more manageable, but he didn’t see it that way. All he saw was a lot of work caused by Ricky.
+++++Working close to the house he spent his time split between grudgingly raking for a while and bagging up the debris. He found Ricky’s action figure, Iron Man, which he’d lost last week and was still throwing a fit over. He put it in his coat pocket.  He’d throw it into the woods later he thought smiling to himself.
+++++With this part of the yard finally done he set out to the back fence. The wind had funneled most of the leaves to this area. They were blown almost three feet high against the slat board fencing. His hands starting to blister, he was thankful that it would be mostly bagging from here on out.
+++++With six bags full, and what seemed like a mountain more to go, he caught movement out of the corner of his eye. The leaves seemed to rise from the far side of the mound, moving in his direction like a ripple across a pond. He immediately thought of the old Bugs Bunny cartoons and how the ground would swell when Bugs traveled underneath it. Momentarily startled he jumped back and out of the pile. The leaves waned and ceased moving. Something was under there.
+++++Gathering his composure he picked up the rake. It was probably just a groundhog or maybe a skunk that had slipped in under the fence from the woods. There had been a lot of them around lately. A skunk would be good. If he got sprayed he wouldn’t have to finish raking and it would suit his parent’s right for punishing him in the first place. He’d stink up the whole house and make everyone as miserable as he was. Taking a deep breath, preparing for the skunk, he took the rake in his hands. Gripping it firmly he stabbed and poked it into the heap. Nothing happened. Then he swung it wildly through the high pile sending leaves flying in all directions. After a few minutes the leaves were scattered everywhere, but nothing had been in there.
+++++“That was stupid,” he muttered.
+++++Now he had twice as much work to do. At that thought the leaves began to move again.  A deep, throaty growl whispered from them as they pulled together, slowly shifting and swirling, swelling and ebbing, until they were heaped once again along the fence.  He backed away slowly never taking his eyes off the pile. When he got to the back porch he sat down to think.
+++++What should he do? He should tell his parents, but they wouldn’t believe him. Besides running to mom and dad was the kind of thing Ricky would do. He wasn’t like Ricky. He’d figure this out on his own. The pile swelled and receded again, as if taking a great breath. Whatever it was he didn’t think it was friendly. Freckles, Mrs. Morrison’s cat was lounging on their porch. He hated that cat.
+++++“Let’s try a little experiment,” he said, a feral look in his eyes.
+++++Coaxing the cat to him he picked it up and approached the unmoving pile of leaves slowly, gently stroking Freckles and whispering softly to him with every step. This was going to be fun. As he got within a few feet of the menacing mound it swelled once more, as if in anticipation of what was to come the cat hissed. He tossed Freckles indifferently into the pile. Nothing happened for a long moment. Suddenly there was a growl and Freckles hissed. Crunching and a loud tearing sound filled his ears, skin being peeled to the bone.  It sent a chill up his spine. A vortex stirred in the mass of debris, like water down a drain. The leaves then erupted in a flourish, a geyser of crimson splashed into the air mixed with the amber and gold of the leaves. Derrick stumbled then fell backwards, his heart pounding.  As suddenly as it had started it stopped. The leaves settled back comfortably.
+++++The pile looked almost as it had before, only smaller and not just a little smaller but considerably smaller. Derrick pulled himself up and watched the mass of leaves swell slightly. He had an idea, kill two birds with one stone. Thrusting his hand into his pocket he pulled out Ricky’s Iron Man action figure and gently tossed it on top of the pile, where it could easily be seen.
+++++“Ricky will be so happy that I found it for him,” he said to himself. Then he turned and walked purposely towards the house.

A Very Blind Date

Listen instead
Listen instead

I followed the mark to Finelli’s, a nice Italian restaurant. I paused when he entered and watched him take a seat at the bar. I decided to lay back a few minutes to observe and watch him. I knew that tonight he was going on a blind date with Racheal and that he’s never seen her, that’s hard to believe in the age of social media. Dinner and a movie were his plans, how quaint.
+++++I knew everything about him. You’d think an accountant who worked on a high profile client’s files all day long would be more secure with his own personal computer. It had been relatively easy to hack, even remotely. Of course not being careful is what put him on my radar in the first place.
+++++He looked nervous. I’ve been on a few blind dates and know exactly what he’s thinking. What if we don’t click? What is she’s ugly? How can I bail if she is? He probably has a friend ready to call in an hour to save his ass. They think they are being smart but the date always knows. It doesn’t matter he’ll be dead before morning.

*

Ben spotted her immediately when she stepped into the bar. She was dressed just as their mutual friend Sally had said she would be, wearing a red dress. She wore her hair in a ponytail, casual. Ben stood as she approached the bar.
+++++“You must be Rachael.”
+++++“Yes, so nice to meet you.”
+++++“Would you like something to drink? Our table will be ready in a few minutes.”
+++++“Sure, I’ll have what you’re having,” she said pointing to the Heineken in front of him.

*

Introductions made, and pleasantries exchanged, things seemed to be going smoothly. Listening to Ben I could tell his nervousness had quickly passed. He was articulate and charming. In another life we might even be friends, but business is business.

*

“Sally tells me you’re in finance.”
+++++“Yes.”
+++++“Stock market?”
+++++“No, nothing as fancy as that, I’m just a lowly accountant at Waterhouse and Banks.”
+++++“I’ve never heard of them.”
+++++“It’s a small firm with only one client. We handle everything involving the family’s money.”

*

Subtle. If only he could have been that subtle about his client all the time he wouldn’t be in this situation. Dinner went smoothly. He ordered two Prime Rib salads, good choice; he even ordered a nice bottle of wine, not the cheap stuff.
+++++It was a short walk to the theater. The cool evening air made it comfortable. He chose a chick flick. He’s really trying to impress. I’d seen the trailer and even though it wasn’t the type of movie I’d normally watch it didn’t look too bad.
+++++The theater was only half full. He started toward the front and paused, finally settling on seats near the rear. This was going to be easier than I’d planned. Half way through the movie and it was time to make my move, I scanned the dark theater. All eyes were on the screen.

*

“Excuse me but I need to use the restroom,” I whispered to Ben and stood. I stepped behind him and with a quick snap my blade flicked opened. Before Ben could turn around I grabbed his head with one hand and with the other jammed the six inch stiletto into the base of his skull, thrusting upward. He died almost instantly.
+++++All eyes were still on the screen, no one noticed me, the woman in red standing near the rear with a knife in her hand.
+++++I squeezed my way past Ben and took my seat next to him. Blind dates are usually disastrous but this one had gone well. Dinner was delicious; the walk was pleasant. Leaning down I whispered, “This is the best blind date I’ve ever been on thank you.”
+++++I gently propped his head up so he looked like he was sleeping, had some popcorn and finished the movie. It was really quite good.

Top Dog

It’s not the size of the dog in the fight but the size of the fight in the dog his daddy used to say. His daddy had been a big man, so what the fuck would he know about it. He brought out the fight in his boy, the hard way, and nicknamed his boy Runt.
+++++His daddy made him tough. His size made him ostentatious. He’d needed to stand out; from his clothes to his ride he always made an impression, loud. Being small he always had to prove himself, he had to be more violent, more extreme, more everything than anyone else.
+++++Driving up I-99 Runt found himself humming along to a chicken scratch country song. He fucking hated country music, but it was the only station his car picked up this far north of the city. His car was bright red and huge, a 74 Cadillac El Dorado with a white convertible top and matching leather interior, the exact opposite of Runt in looks and a perfect match in style.
+++++Dwight Yoakam sang about being a thousand miles from nowhere and Runt felt the same way. His crew had sold him out. Runt would have done almost anything for his crew if they’d have asked, and they knew it. They’d asked him to make a delivery. They’d set him up.
+++++The crew threw in with Hector Vaccaro. He’d supply them with all the meth they could sell. Working with Hector would be profitable for both parties. Hector demanded one hundred percent loyalty and proof of that loyalty would be Runt.
+++++Mikey ran the crew and Jesus was second in command. Runt had overheard a conversation between the two. Hector wanted a sacrifice, a lamb, as proof of their fidelity. Whoever made the first delivery wouldn’t be coming back.
+++++“Who’s gonna give up?”
+++++“Let’s give him Runt,” Mikey said.
+++++“Why Runt, he’s a good dog, always ready to fight.”
+++++“That’s exactly why. He’s got ambition; won’t want to be a street hustler forever. Someday he’ll bite us if we keep him on a short leash for too long.”
+++++A long moment of silence followed as Runt took in what he’d heard.  He’d been loyal, a good earner and recruiter. The dirtiest jobs were never a problem for him. He couldn’t believe what he was hearing.
+++++“Okay,” Jesus had finally said, “aint that what you do to a runt anyway, put him down, more milk for the big dogs?”
+++++They both had laughed at that. Runt had been betrayed. If their loyalty wasn’t with Runt – his wouldn’t be with them. He’d make the delivery, but he wouldn’t be anyone’s lamb. He’d have a surprise for Hector.
+++++Pulling into lot of the all-night truck stop Hector chose for the delivery, he drove slowly around to the back and saw three black Lincoln Navigators at the far end of the empty lot. He looped a small circle and parked with the ass end of his Caddy facing them, an easier exit if things went south.
+++++With one hand raised he opened the door and stepped around to the back. In the other hand he held his gun low, pointing at the ground and behind him. He knew holding a gun wouldn’t go over well, but pointing it away might soothes nerves a little. He was wrong. There were ten guns pointing at him the minute they saw his weapon.
+++++“Relax boys…easy,” he said softly and lowered his raised hand showing the cars keys he held inside.
+++++It was time to put his plan in motion. Runt slipped the key into the lock and popped the latch. It rose silently as he moved back a step. Hector and one of his men walked forward and looked inside then looked to Runt. Hector’s man reached in and removed the bag containing first payment.
+++++“You wanted one, I brought you two,” Runt said glancing to the heads of Mikey and Jesus laying face up in an open box. He saw a smile slowly form on Hector’s face.
+++++“I guess I’ll be dealing with you from now on.”
+++++“Yes sir, we gonna make us a bunch of money,” Runt said, as a smile slowly crept upon his own lips.

Contingency Plan

Angelo walked into the bar, head held high. Confident he would get what he wanted. Prepared to do what needed done if he didn’t. He held the hand of a small, blonde haired child. He sat her at a booth nearest the door, facing away from the dimly lit interior.
+++++“Play with my phone honey,” he said sweetly, handing her his cellphone. “I’ll be back in a few minutes and then we’ll go for the ice cream I promised.”
+++++“Yes Poppy,” she half smiled, turning her face to him, her left profile partially revealed to the only other patron.
+++++Sitting in its darkest recesses Walter watched Angelo enter. The bar wouldn’t open for another hour, providing them with the privacy they needed for business. Angelo took a seat across the table from Walter, nodding a hello as he did. Walter had two glasses of wine set out, an old country custom for a meeting such as this.
+++++“You know why I’m here.”
+++++“Yes,” Walter said sympathetically.
+++++“I need the boy Walter, you need to give him up.”
+++++“I can’t give him to you Angie,” Walter said, using the name Angie from their childhood. A name only he could use and not sound deprecating.
+++++“We go way back Walter. I’m here out of respect.” He took a drink of the wine Walter had set out for them. “One way or another I’ll find him. If you give him to me he won’t suffer, I give you my word. If I have to find him…” he shrugged his shoulders, “I can’t make any promises.”
+++++“I’m sorry but I can’t do that. He’s my sister’s only child.”
+++++“He’s an addict. The boys gotta habit, a bad one and everyone knows it.”
+++++“You’re putting me in a hard spot here.”
+++++“He’s a fucking heroin addict, plain and simple, and he almost killed the girl. Eye for an eye.” There was firmness in his voice he had never used on Walter.
+++++“Aint no eye for an eye shit Angie,” he said calmly, “she’s still walking around breathing. You killing him wouldn’t be fair.”
+++++“Fair?” he questioned. “The girl will need multiple surgeries. She’ll never be the same.”
+++++“You’re taking this personal, it was an accident.”
+++++“It is personal. It was my restaurant he crashed the truck into.”
+++++“Personal yes…but its bad business, for both of us, do we need more bloodshed over this unfortunate accident?”
+++++“Was it good business putting your nephew in that position?”
+++++Walter had no answer for that. He had given the boy a job and the boy had fucked up. “Family is family,” was all he could think of to say. He’d already offered to pay for damage to Angelo’s place and had been politely turned down.
+++++“I hoped to appeal to your personal side, but now I suppose we must do it the hard way.”
+++++“I’m sorry you feel that way.” Walter meant what he said but couldn’t give up his nephew just because a girl had gotten hurt. Eye for an eye, he believed in that saying, but the girl hadn’t died.
+++++“I came to you to try and stop a war. I don’t feel I’m being unreasonable. Blood will be on your hands not mine.”
+++++He stood slowly, old bones creaking. Frustrated he glanced down at Walter and then to the door. Walter stood. Out of mutual respect Angelo knew he would walk him to the door and into the sights of the marksman on top of the building across the street. The shooter would kill Walter as soon as he left if given the nod. Walter followed one step behind until they reached the booth. The child, playing a game on the phone, didn’t hear their approach.
+++++“Marie,” Angelo said quietly, “I want you to meet someone.” The girl turned to face them. “This is Walter. He’s an old friend.” The hideous scar and empty socket on her right side where her eye had once been came into view.
+++++“Walter this is Marie…my grand-daughter.”
+++++The sight of the girls damaged face shocked him deeply. “Jesus Angie, I didn’t know.”
+++++“No one does. My daughter, she’s a very…private person. She has never been involved in the family business. She prefers her independence, to make her own way.” He looked out the restaurants front window. He couldn’t bring himself to look Walter in the eye. “We chose the path we’re on, you and I. She didn’t, but she does work at the restaurant cleaning in the evenings, saving for college, and sometimes Marie tags along.”
+++++“We’re going for ice cream,” Marie said and smiled crookedly at Walter. She would have been beautiful if not for the disfigurement. He paused and smiled back.
+++++“Have your Poppy take you to Santella’s for your ice cream. They have the best in the city,” he said to the girl.
+++++“Come back tonight, I’ll make sure he’s here,” he said to Angelo.
+++++Angelo nodded, took Marie’s hand and walked outside. Stepping onto sidewalk he signaled to the man on the roof, not with a nod but a shake of his head.

Brother’s Keeper

My brother Ronnie had been murdered, while I was in jail, shot in the head. The cops knew it, they’d bugged his apartment. They didn’t want Ronnie; he was a low level drug dealer and addict, just another nobody to them. Two piece of shit cops thought bugging his place would lead them to bigger fish. They had no idea.
They had a tape of Hector Flores killing my brother. Hector had worked his way up to big time drug dealer over the past few years. It’s too bad they placed the bugs illegally. They couldn’t use any of it in court. That’s where I came in.
+++++I just got out of jail, assault and battery. Two guys jumped me outside McCoy’s Bar. It was self-defense but my court appointed lawyer was shit, so I did 90 days. They wouldn’t even let me out to go to Ronnie’s funeral.
+++++I went to check in with my probation officer, and knew right away something was up. There were two cops waiting for me, Detectives Miller and Bronson. The cops knew Ronnie had been dealing small time outta his place, a little here and there never anything steady. He sold just enough to cover his fix, and only when he was low on cash.
+++++A few of his buyers were well to do college boys. They were running their own operation, catering to the academic…if you know what I mean. They’d slum it down town then sell it on campus at an inflated price, sort of a finder’s fee for their upper classmen.
+++++One of them got popped, and spilled everything. They were planning on stepping up their operation in a big way, and were gonna use Ronnie to bridge the gap to his supplier. I guess college tuition must have gone up.
+++++The two cops wanted the who, what, where, when and how on the college boys. They were gonna let them set up shop and get rolling. Once they had business going Miller and Bronson would steam roll in, facing major drug charges they’d roll on their supplier, Hector Flores.
+++++There was only one problem. A judge wouldn’t authorize the bugs for an operation like that and they knew it, so Miller and Bronson took it upon themselves. They set their equipment up, it was voice activated. Just turn it on and go, then check it every day and see what you got. They weren’t prepared for what they heard on one of the tapes.
+++++They played it for me. It was brutal to listen to. I wanted to kill Hector; I wanted to kill them too. They fucked up couldn’t touch Hector, anything on their tapes would be inadmissible, now they needed my help.
+++++‘So let me get this right, you want me to wear a wire and meet with Hector?’
+++++‘That’s about it,’ Miller said.
+++++‘What makes you think I’ll do it?’ I asked.
+++++‘He was your brother. Don’t you want to help put his killer away?’ Bronson said sarcastically.
+++++‘Fuck you,’ I said disbelieving what I’d heard. ‘How are you gonna convince the bosses down at H.Q. You can’t play the tape for them. They’d shit if they knew about it.’
+++++‘That’s the easy part. You came to us with info on Hector. You volunteered to wear a wire, to even the score for your brother.’ Bronson said. At that they both smiled.
+++++‘And if you don’t, you might find yourself… violating your parole in the very near future,’ Miller added.
+++++‘You can’t do that.’
+++++‘We can do whatever we what,’ Bronson replied. I knew they could too, if I didn’t do what they wanted I’d be back inside. These two fucks had me by the balls.
+++++‘What makes you think he’ll even meet with me?’ I asked incredulously.
+++++‘You heard the tape, the fifty grand he thinks your brother stole from him. He’ll meet you. In fact he’s probably looking for you. We already put the word on the street that you’ve been flashing a lot of cash for a guy just outta jail.’
+++++The bastards fucked me. I had to go through with it. I had no qualms about fucking Hector Flores. I would have preferred to do it in my own time, on my terms. I’d rather see him dead than in jail but you played the cards that were dealt to you.
+++++I remember when Hector was nobody, a punk hanging around Joey D and his boys. He started dealing when he was just a kid, selling bags of weed down on 23rd street. Soon he was running numbers and girls. Somewhere along the line he stepped it up, coke, heroine, you name it. Then Joey D disappeared. There’s no doubt Hector had something to do with it. Rumor has it Joey’s buried in at least half a dozen places in the city.
+++++Their plan was simple. All I had to do was let Hector know that I wanted to give the cash back he thought my brother took. The cops would supply the cash and I’d wear a wire. Hector’s a big mouth, he likes to brag. They were banking on him running his mouth and incriminating himself. I was banking on getting shot; at the very least I’d probably get fucked up pretty good.
+++++I met one of Ronnie’s junkie friends at McCoy’s Bar. He was only too happy to pass the message along. I guess he thought it would put him in Hector’s good graces.
+++++A meeting was set up. Hector picked the spot, I wanted someplace public, but he chose an old flea bag apartment he used to run girls out of back in his pimping days, 10 PM. I was pretty sure I wouldn’t be walking out if it. The fucking cops would win either way. He’d incriminate himself or kill me and they’d have it on tape… all legal this time.
+++++I stopped by Ronnie’s old place. I guess it’s mine now, I been staying there since getting out and the landlord didn’t care as long as he got paid in cash. I knew Ronnie used to keep a 38 hidden under the floorboards of the closet. I had a feeling I might need it. It was still there, along with some other things. One of them was a picture of us when we were kids. It had been taken at the beach. Ronnie’s eyes were bright. They didn’t have the dazed, glassed over look I’d gotten used to seeing in them over the last few years. Seeing that picture broke my heart. Ronnie had been a junkie, but he was still my brother.
+++++Up until then I’d considered bailing, take off and run. I’d be violating my probation and might get caught some day. Or worse Hector might find me. He’d think I had his money. One thing about drug dealers, they want their money. For fifty grand he’d hunt me down till the day he died.
+++++With five hours till the meeting, I went to the apartment. I walked the block a few times looking for any sign of Hector’s boys. It was all clear. The doors weren’t locked, big surprise there.
+++++After going inside I saw why. It was mostly bare. An old cum stained mattress lay in the bedroom and a beat up couch and chair sat in the living room. I tore out the lining from under the chair and tucked the gun inside. If I was gonna die tonight I damn sure wasn’t going alone. With the gun hidden I went to meet the cops.
+++++They explained how everything worked, like they gave a shit about me. I was expendable to them. In fact it would make their job easier if Hector had me shot tonight. Just before the meeting they wired me up, I taped the small transmitter up under my balls, I knew Hector wouldn’t go there.
+++++I showed up exactly at 10PM, Hector made me wait almost an hour. Let me tell you something. If someone pulls a gun on you, you react. But knowing its coming and having to wait for it is a whole lot harder.
+++++When they walked into the apartment the first thing I noticed was his bodyguard, he was fucking huge, 6”7” at least, and of course he had a gun in his hand. Hector stood next to him. I got up off the couch with my hands raised, the bag next to me on the floor. His bodyguard frisked me then stepped out of the way.
+++++‘Where’s my money?’ Hector asked, straight to the point.
+++++‘It’s in the bag,’ I said and slid it over to him with my foot.
+++++‘You’re brother had some balls stealing from me,’ he said contemptuously.
+++++‘I don’t want any problems,’ I said. ‘I just wanna make things right, and get on with my life.’ I did my best to look pitiful.
+++++‘Get on with your life… You’re a funny motherfucker. What makes you think you’re gonna have a life after tonight?’
+++++Just then his bodyguard stepped up and hit me with is gun. Pain exploded in my head and jaw as I fell to the ground. I landed sprawled out in front of the chair, spitting blood and a tooth out onto the floor.
+++++‘We both know you’re not walking outta here. The only question is… you gonna die like a man, or you gonna die like your brother? He died like a bitch, begging, and crying,’ Hector said.
+++++‘Fuck you.’ I spat through a mouthful of blood, craning my neck to look up at him. I lay on my stomach and didn’t want to move. My hand was close to the chair, the gun within reach. All I had to do now was wait for my chance.
+++++‘Oh…you’re a tough guy,’ he said. ‘Gimme my gun.’ He held his hand out, never taking his eyes off me.
+++++The bodyguard reached into his jacket as I slid my hand under the chair. He handed Hector a stainless steel Beretta 9mm. Hector squatted down, eye level with me.
+++++‘This is the gun I offed your pussy brother with,’ he said with a smile, revealing a mouthful of gold teeth. ‘Let’s keep this in the family.’
+++++That was it. He confessed and had the murder weapon. They’d break in any second, that’s when I’d make my move. The rest seem to happen in slow motion. It lasted about five seconds but seemed like a lifetime.
+++++The front door burst inward, and there was shouting. The bodyguard turned to it, his gun raised. Hector only shifted his eyes in that direction, but it was enough. A shot rang out, then another. The bodyguard twitched then went flying backwards.
+++++As Hector’s eyes shifted back to me I pulled the gun out and fired. For a split second the shock of what was about to happed registered on his face. It was a look that said ‘I can’t believe a scumbag like you is gonna win’. The shot went upward, hitting Hector in the mouth. The top of his head exploded as the bullet tore through it. He didn’t even get a shot off.
+++++The shooting was in self-defense but I still got nailed for the illegal gun. Hector’s man took out Bronson. Too bad he only got one of the pricks. Thanks to my “effort helping” the police, the judge said he let me off easy, 90 days in county.
+++++Easy…any time inside isn’t easy. But I would have killed Hector anyway, or gotten myself killed trying. And the fifty grand hidden in Ronnie’s closet makes the 90 days a whole lot easier.