The Sinners

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Thrillers  |  House: Booksie Classic

Submitted: August 11, 2016

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Submitted: August 11, 2016

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THE SINNERS

 

A cabin in the woods

 

I could see that he cabin was a very small one as we moved down the narrow path towards its door. There was nothing else around except the woods and cries of the wolves. The cold winds blew with the starrysky above us.

He handed me the bag from his hand as he went on to open the door, focusing the light of his torch on the lock as he opened it. He moved in first and lit the only light in the small and shabby but well maintained room. It seemed he took proper care of this place. There was nothing much in the room. Just a small table, a couple chairs, a small bed and a wardrobe. The room had two adjacent doors that seemingly led to a kitchen and a washroom.

I asked in a low voice, “What is this place?”

He answered in his usual heavy tone, “It’s a safe house. I used it when I worked undercover. Times I needed to lay low. Grab a chair and sit down.”

I sat in one of the chairs as he took the other, across the table,  and face to face with me. I kept the bag on the table.

My mind moved back three or four hours. Back to where it all started.

 

 

What goes around comes around

 

 I was still back in the city. A city notorious for gang wars and mob control. A city people often called hate city. And me, I was just a detective for the Coyville Police Department, who pulled odd jobs for the mob for extra cash.No I wasn’t what a cop should be. I wasn’t a good man. I took bribes. I killed people I was supposed to protect and protected those whom I had taken oath to put behind bars. No I wasn’t an angel. I never was and I never wanted to be one. I knew I was playing a deadly game. But I forgot one thing. What goes around comes around.

It was eleven in the night and I was sitting at one corner of a bistro, feeding myself with a steak and eggs. I visited this place often. The owner, Rob, knew me well. I often got job letters from the mob and Rob handed me those. But this place was never under the radar so was safe from those idealistic cops out there.

Tonight was just another night and I was having my meal when it all started.  I could see Patrick and Gary walk in. I was a bit startled. They would not come to meet me here. They never did. It was protocol.  Then again may be they didn’t know that I was here. Maybe they too liked the steak here as much as I did. So I concentrated again on the juicy meat on my plate.

But I had to look up again as the two Irish mobsters came back and sat directly across my table. Something was not right.

“ Hello Mike “, Pat said in a low voice.

“ What are you doing here? We don’t meet here you know that. “, I said.

“ It was needed. Was urgent. “

“ Anything wrong? “

“ Cant say here. Meet us at the back alley after you are finished. We would be waiting. Do go away.”, this time it was Gary with his muffled voice. His eyes looked cold and blank.

I nodded in reply. The two mobsters got up and left the bistro. I looked to see where they went. They went out the front door and started speaking to another man. I didn’t know who this was. But I sure did understand that the man outside was to keep an eye on me so that I didn’t leave. And right then I didn’t know why I had a bad feeling about this. Something surely wasn’t right. Was all these to take me out? If so, but why?

I slid down my hand down and raised my right leg to get my secondary revolver. The.38 caliber snub nose was there, fully loaded. I took it out, opened the latch and slowly put it in the pocket of my leather jacket. Just in case. My service pistol to was fully loaded too. But using it would plant me on the scene if I ever had to use it on these guys. I wouldn’t want any investigation on them including me else everything would come up and I would end behind bars. Also I surely dint want any situation where I have to use these. Well, you can fool the cops but never the Irish mob. I wouldn’t want to get on the wrong foot with these guys. But if they came for me, I gotta do my bit to survive. But then again, the same thought raced through my mind again. Were they really here to take me out? If so, I don’t know why. If not so, then what other cause can be so urgent that they would break protocol? Either way, I was gonna find out soon.

I moved down to Rob, paid for the meal. And then moved out the door and turned right. As soon as I started walking I could clearly understand that the man outside the door started following me.

“ Buddy, you don’t need to guard me like that. I aint going anywhere. “, I said without even looking back.

“ Stop taking and keep moving.”, came as the reply.

His tone made me realize for sure, I gotta use my gun. But I gotta find out why the Irish want me gone. Especially, which Danny Cohen wanted me gone. What game was he playing?

Just a building apart I took a right again and entered into the dark alley. I could see Pat at a distance. Gary stood farther away smoking a cigarette. The man behind me stood at the start of the alley. He did not come in. That was the gatekeeper. So I couldn’t escape. Yep, I was sure then, that it was a hit. I knew how these worked. A silenced gun would take me to the gates of hell where the Devil himself would be waiting for me.

I had to think of something fast. But now I gotta act normal. I gotta know what’s going on first. And that’s where Pat and Gary would be helping me out unbeknownst of them. But for that I gotta earn myself sometime.

“Hey Pat, what’s going on?”

“What does it feel  like?”, Gary answered.

“I did this many times, buddy. I know what this is. But all I don’t understand what is really going on? Why would Danny want me out?”

“He’s tying all loose ends.”, Pat seemed very stiff and cold. His eyes looking directly at me as a predator stalks his prey. “He’s got other cops on his pay roll too. But none have ever killed for him. You are more of a liability. He’s planning something. Even we don’t know.“

“Clearing his road, eh? Guess I got nowhere to run. Well, what goes around comes around. ”, I sighed.

“Get his gun, Gary.”

I gotta think of something fast. Do something as fast as I could.

“Well, this alley is a dead end, and there’s nowhere to run. I think, I might as well go with the flow. Here is my gun.”, I said, handing out my service pistol. Gary and Pat as startled a bit. And already they have their guns pointed at me. 

Gary snatched the gun from me.

“ I have a secondary too.”, I said, “ankle holster.”

 I tried playing Gary. He’s just muscle with no brains. And I just hoped he fell for it. And I wasn’t wrong. Gary was suddenlybending to get my secondary revolver from my ankle, which I knew wasn’t there at all, even before Pat realized this. This was my chance.

What happened next took only a few seconds. Gary bent down and I raised my knees hard upright directly to hit his nose as I quickly reached for the snub-nosed and quickly fired two shots without even taking it out from my pocket. Two shots directly to Pat’s gut before he realized what was happening. His gun fell from his hand and he shouted out loud. And then, again two quick shots that pierced the bending Gary’s head.  And then I jumped aside into the dark as the third guy came running in. By the time he came I had grabbed Gary’s gun falling on the ground and I could shout his brains out, why I lay on the ground from the jump I made. The wounded Pat was about to reach his gun this time I fired again from the pistol and made sure Pat went to hell.

I got up and dusted myself a bit. Picked up my service weapon and put it in the holster. Took out the snub-nosed and latched it and back to the ankle holster.

“I will die guys. But surely, not tonight. And not by your hands.”, I said looking at the dead bodies.

I moved out fast before anyone came in or saw me. The gun shots woke up a few people all right. I gotta go away before they see me.

Coming out of the alley, I looked for a phone booth and called up emergency. Keeping my name anonymous I just said I heard gunshots at the place and hung up. That got to get the cops there before Danny sent more men to check out if the job had been done. This would buy me time. There was only one man who could help me now. I needed to get to him fast.

 

 

An old friend

 

The apartment was at the north end of the city. It was 12:45 am in the night already. I survived once tonight. I wouldn’t for much more unless I get help. Once Danny comes to know what went down back at the alley he would realize his mistake of sending an idiot like Gary to do this job. Yep, I agree Pat was good at what he does. But tonight he failed. And once Danny realizes his mistake he would come for me with whatever he got. I hadn’t much time.

Soon I was at the door of an old friend perhaps the most lame and stupid apartment in the whole city. I knocked. There was no answer. I knocked again. This time harder. I finally got a reply.

 

“Who the hell is there?”, a hard, rough voice came from inside.

“It’s me, Michael.”, I said.

The door opened slowly. The man inside peeped out. He hadn’t changed a bit. The same old rugged faced. The same old back brushed hair and horseshoe moustaches. The same old dark eyes beyond which you could never see.  Though a bit more aged than the last time I saw him. He’d probably be in touching fifties.

“Come in.”

I moved in and closed the door behind me.

“What do you want?”, he asked.

“Help, Tom. Cohen wants me out.” ,I said as I looked to him. He gave me a look in return. “Sent Pat and Gary and some new guy. I took care of them though.”

“Hmm, want a drink?”. Yes, that was his reply. He was always like that. Did what he liked when he liked.

“Umm yeah.”

“What did you do? Cohen is no freak. He takes all steps after thinking a lot. You the one ratted him out?” ,he said, handing me out the drink.

“What are you speaking about? Ratted?”,I asked, taking the glass of Scotch from his hand.

“What type of a crooked cop are you? You take bribes, pull odd jobs, and don’t even know what’s going on? Even when the employer of your dirty deeds is involved?” Someone ratted out Cohen to the DA.”

“I knew that one. It was Kelly James. I took him out. But that’s not the thing. Cohen’s going planning somrthing big. But he is tying up loose ends first.”, I said, I was now seated in the uncomfortable sofa in the apartment while Tom sat at chair. How does the man even stay here.Its so shabby and dirtier than my apartment.

“Well, that means is not the way either of us know. Something’s going down deep and Cohen is pulling the strings. But didn’t I tell you never to walk the path I did. I always told you never to work for Cohen even if I did. And you wouldn’t listen.” He stood up from his chair.

“Yeah, I dint listen. I could live in shabby apartments like you. I did it for some extra cash. Look at the place you are living in. how can a person stay here? And even you wanted money. You worked for Cohen too. I just wanted to live life.” Now we both stood face to face as we speak and I was clearly irritated. He’s pointing out my mistakes when he himself is no better.

“I did work for Cohen and I know I did wrongs. I left. And Cohen allowed me because he knew I wouldn’t ever come back or speak a word about him. He and I went long way back.we had a trust code. I would break it he knew, and so, he wouldn’t either. But he wouldn’t do the same for you. He barely trusts you as much as he did me. I told you never to get directly involved with Cohen. Never be on his payroll.”, he poked his finger at my chest as he spoke in a strong voice.

“What are you gonna blame me? Or help me out?”, I shouted at him.

“Ahh, of course I will help you. You were the closest friend I had.”, he moved away showing his hand in a gesture.”Rather I son I never had.”

 And then he turned to me and looked at me. For the first time in many years, especially after loosingEllis, could see past his eyes. The love and care he had for me. I was glad that he was my mentor, my partner and the closest person to me in this world. And unbeknownst of me, a thank you slipped out of my mouth. He didn’t reply but just smiled.

As he just moved slightly and away from me, the was a shattering sound. The sound of shattered glass.The glass of the window panes. The bullet meant for him had just missed him and hit the wall farther away.

“Shooter…..get down.”, he shouted as both of us jumped on two different sides away from the window.

Now, I lay by the wall, .the television set just at my legs. And he was about a few feet away from me, laying down against the sofa.. We were face to face. The position of the room was such, that the wall towards ours legs led outside the apartment and there wasn’t much things there. Towards our head was the dining table and a couple hairs. The table touched the wall, and just above the surface of the table was the window from where the shots came in.

The shooter was in the balcony of the neighboring apartment. The shooter was still firing from what seemed to be an assault rifle. I had slowly crawled towards the wall to stay away from the bullets while tom dint move yet. The firing stopped. I guessed the shooter was reloading. I could Tom him move his hands under the sofa and get a pistol and a sniper rifle. He threw the pistol to me. I grabbed it. All these took place within about a minute.

I knew what to do. I was to provide coving fire for Tom. I opened the latch the gun and just peeked enough to get the glimpse of the balcony. I started shooting. I could only see just a bit of the head of the shooter. I released he was crouching and taking cover with the help of the balcony concrete railing. But I didn’t need to shoot him. I needed to provide time for Tom to take up aim. He was already on his knees and the rifle firmly in his hand, his eyes targeting the shooter.

Soon I was out of ammo. And so I stopped. Tom was ready. The shooter stood up trying to shoot again. But I could hear the sniper roar. Tom fired a two rounds. And well, this guy still was a crack shot. He didn’t miss. The shooter fell from the balcony. The firefight was over.

“That’s bad.”, said Tom, angrily in as sharp voice, as he stood up. “Danny crossed his line. That bullet was for me. Now he gotta die.”

I looked up to him, “If he lives, then we are dead. So its us against him and I prefer us than him. But why did he sent only one man?”

“Maybe he thought I would be unaware as I trusted him. So maybe one man could do it he thought. The ddin’t realize his mistake. But I am sure this shooter had called him up and informed about you. So there should me more men coming. We gotta move. ”

I nodded, agreeing with him. He took out a bag from behind the sofa.

“What’s that?”

“Guns and ammo.”, he grinned, as we moved out the apartment.

 

 

Paying for your sins

 

We were in my car, going south, into the city. While we were driving, Tom asked in an inquisitive tone, “You need to worry about anyone?”

“What?”

“Anyone you care about? I know you got no family, but you came across anyone whom you care about?”

Suddenly I realized what he meant. Cohen was playing big. He couldn’t get to me yet. That means he would go for anyone who is close to me. Anyone I care about.  That’s how Danny’s mob worked.

“Shit!”, I exclaimed.

“So theres someone whom you care about?” , he said turning to me.

“Yeah theres this girl. She is studying in college now. She was in Juvenile for a petty crime. I took care of her after she left juvenile. I helped her get a place. And I pay for her college and all. I meet take her to the fair and all when I get time. Reminds me of Ellie.”

The name Eliie, brought back deep hidden memories in Tom. I knew that. Ellie was Tom’s daughter. She used to call me uncle as well. She died in a car crash along with Tom’s wife, Marie. Both these ladies were very nice. Tom blamed the loss of them on himself. He said it was because he committed so many sins. That’s when Tom left the force. That’s when he left working for Cohen.  And then he became a recluse. So many years later, surely some storm raised in Tom’s heart. And then, his girl reminded me of Ellie, so I helped her.

Tom looked at me. “ And you didn’t think of her till now?”

“Cohen didn’t know. I thought Cohen only wanted me out. And others who became a liability. But things are different. I have been an idiot. We need to save her.”

“Then why the hell are you driving so slow?”

We soon reached the place. Everything seemed okay. the building was a four storied. The girl, Betty, lived in an apartment on the second floor. We entered the building. I could find the security guard nowhere. I reached for the .38 snub-nosed. Tom got this pistol out. We slowly moved up the stairs, keeping an eye around. Everything seemed so horrifically quiet.

We reached the second floor it is as quiet as well. Betty lived at the first apartment on the right of the corridor. I moved to the door and knocked. There was no reply.

“Betty? You there?Its Michael.”

No reply yet. I knocked again. And still there was no answer. I was gonna call again, but tom told me not to with a head movement gesture. He slowly turned the doorknob pushed it. The door opened slowly. This wasn’t supposed to be. Something was wrong. I got my gun ready. Tom turned on the lights.

What I saw was horrific. Directly in front of me, Betty was seated in a chair. Motionless. Her throat slit wide open and blood was all over the place. This was a message. I knew it. It was Cohen’s message. That he was here. And soon I was next, it meant. Tears rolled down my eyes. I never ever shook while I killed anyone for Cohen. I never regretted, when I killed a father, a husband, a brother or anyone. Now I realize. Maybe I never thought much, but Betty was like my own child. I took care of her. How could I be so stupid to ever think I can hide it from anyone? The department didn’t know about Betty. I didn’t want them owing to my connections in the mob. But how could I be so stupid to think I could hide her from Cohen’s eyes. Especially in a city controlled by the mob.

I dropped to my knees. I realized what loss was. I could feel Tom’s hand on my shoulders.

I looked up to him. “Seems like I paid for my sins too, Tom. I paid for my sins too.”

“We all are sinners kid. None of us is a saint. He all have to pay one day or the other.”

“Cohen needs to die. Hes gonna pay for this.”, I said in a shaky voice. Tears still rolled down my cheeks.

“Yeah, else we won’t live either.”

“So what are we gonna do, now?”, I got up and rubbed my eyes dry.

“We gotta find out what hes up to. Only person who can help us is Jerry.”, Tom seemed determined.

“Then lets do it.” And we moved out closing the door behind us. We decided to not to call the cops. Cohen had gys on his payroll. He shouldn’t know we were here. We left the apartment to go to Jerry.

 

 

Old man Jerry

 

I had visited Jerry only twice before this. And his office as he likes to call it, hadn’t changed a bit. It was still in the back of the small restaurant he owned downtown. He sat in his usual leather armchair behind the table. And we took seat in the comfortable chairs, facing him. The room to hadn’t changed. The man had a taste for good paintings and the walls were decorated with those. There was the same cupboard and sofa, perfectly in the condition as they were the last time I visited, about four years back.

Jerry, was a local businessman. And a respected one as well. People called him Old Man Jerry. People respected him because he always delivered when he promised. He had his own investigative agency for those who couldn’t go to the cops. But rarely did anyone know of that except for the people concerned. So he had eyes and ears everywhere. Anything going down in Coyville wouldn’t get past him. He knew all. But he would only open his mouth if he was paid right. And now if anyone could help us know what Cohen was up to, Jerry was the man for sure.

He knew top back when Tom was young and was undercover in a gang of some ruthless drug dealers who worked across interstate borders. So I let him do all the talking as I sat and listened.

"So you want to know about Cohen?",Jerry asked looking towards us. Tom nodded in reply.

"Well, we know about the DA is on Cohen's tail. But thats not it. Theres somthing more siniter I think.", Tom said, looking directly into the eyes of Jerry. "For old times sake  Jerry.....", he continued, ".....I am asking you to help me. I cant pay you. But I would appreciate if you would help an old friend."

"Well, Thomas, we go a long way back. Its been what, about seventeen years since we know each other?"

Tom agreed and nodded.

"Well.....", Jerry continued, "..... I think I can do this much for an old friend. So listen carefully."

He grew inquistive to know what was going on and looked at Jerry.

He continued in this soft and polite voice, "Danny Cohen needed to change his business. his business suffered a loss after a deal with a Polish gangsters in a differnet state went wrong. But he didn't tell about this to anyone. Not even his closest people. He paid the Polish gangstersand that cost him a lot. He needed to come up with somthing soon. He struck a deal with a businessman of another state to do business in that city. It involves a Senator to see that he is not under the radar. He moved all his money in. Each and every penny. The deal was important to cover the losses and also see to the future of the business. And everything was set. So what he did, he bought ta DA. The DA being on his tail is ruse. The DA would move him to court. By that time he would have moved all his money to the other state via various charitable organisations and business firms. The other businessman and the Senator would help him in this. Since there is no proof against Cohen, tax fraud was only way to get him. But with no black money to link to him, he would walk free in front of the jury. To peoples eye he would be legit. But he would move to the other state and there he would do business. The Polish deal cost him a fortune. And he spent even more to recover from that. If he can pull this off, he'd be unstoppable. He would have legit business as a front-runner for his dirty deeds."

We were shocked at this. This was something huge. Cohen was planning something huge. He even got a dirty DA and a corrupt Senator in his pocket. This was the biggest thing Cohen tried in I dont know what, maybe eternity.

"But why they want to kill us?", I couldnt help asking.

Jerry turned to me. "Well, Cohen did one mistake. As the DA came in investigating, fakely I must add, the Feds came in too. The DA had nothing to do with it. Frederick Keller, Federal Agent was hot on Cohen for a long time. But couldnt get proof. Now he pulled somethings to get the hearing as fast as possible. This evening, Cohen came to know that the hearing is tomorrow at noon. All he got is tonight to tie up all loose ends. You both worked for him. Cops who killed for him. This could bury him. He didnt want that. If you came up or Tom, all his preperations would end. So he needed to take you out. And anyone else who can be a problem for him, maximum by dawn."

Me and Tom looked at each other. We were in deep shit. Cohen wouldnt let us live by any chance. And we knew we wouldnt, especially seeing Betty.

"Anyway to stop him?", Tom asked. By this time, a man walked in with 3 glasses of Scotch.

"Have a drink.", Jerry said. We all picked up a glass and the man left.

Jerry continued, sipping from the glass, "I never liked his DA. I got his office bugged just in case. But I didnt know that time, that it would give me gold."

We both looked inquisitively at Jerry.

He continued, "Remember Kelly James? You killed him didnt you, Mike?"He turned to me. I nodded yes to reply.

"Well, now you understnd he didnt rat Cohen out to the DA. Kelly worked for me. He was working in the DA's office. Hes the one who bugged the place. Cohen first met the DA in this office. But Cohen and DA colin Carter thought the office was safe and agreed to the deal then and there. But Kelly got everything on the deal recorded. He made a CD and handed out to me. Only one copy. But Cohen and the DA Colin Carter needed strong momentumfor Carter's move against Cohen. They needed someone who was a government official and not linked to Cohen. They made you kill Kelly saying that he ratted Cohen out. You took the bait. This was to show that Cohen killed someone to stop the DA and so Carter help a press meeting and went against him. Building up a strong momentum. But Kelly didnt work for Cohen ever, so Cohen was practically untouchable. But Kelly sensed this earlier. So thats why he had removed the bugs from the office and handed me proof of the deal. Then met his death."

"I am so sorry, Jerry. I didnt know about Kelly." I felt remorse. I never regretted killing Kelly before now. But now its just a bad feeling I am having.

"Thats the past and I wont talk about it Mike", Jerry said, while taking out a CD and inserting it in his laptop. He started playing a video from the CD and then turned towards us. We could see DA Carter's office. Cohen with him. Talking of all Jerry told us. The false case. And Cohen ready to pay him two million. The deal with the Senator and all. And Carter agreeing. This was Cohen's kryptonite. It can burn him and the bury him deep.

As the video finished, Jerry took out the CD, put it in the case and handed to Tom. "For an old friend, Tom."

"Thanks a lot Jerry.", Tom said. Jerry smiled. Then he turned to me.

"You killed all the wrong people till today, Mike. You should have walked away from Cohen long back. But do somthing right for once. Kill Cohen for me, will you? He needs to pay for many things he did to me in the past."

"With pleasure." I gave a nod and looked up to Jerry.

"I have got an idea. But I need access to an untracable email id. Can you help me out, Jerry?", Tom asked.

"Sure, old friend."Old Man Jerry nodded in agreement.

 

 

Laying the trap

 

It has been just about forty minutes since we reached the cabin in the woods. We were sitting and discussing at the table face to face with each other. Before we came to the cabin, Tom had sent an email from Jerry’s untraceable email id to Cohen. It contained a glimpse of the video of the deal Cohen made with the DA. I knew Cohen had seen it for sure. And he wouldn’t be able to trace it even if he wanted. Now was the time to give him a call.

I took out my phone and dialed Cohen’s number. I called him from another SIM so he couldn’t know at first. I heard the phone ringing at the other side. And after a few seconds the phone was picked up.

“Hello.”, I could hear Danny’s familiar cold voice.

“Hello Danny, Michael here. Surprised to see that I am still alive?”

“That I am, Mikey boy. Didn’t expect you would cause so much trouble. Though I can’t deny that you were always one of my best men.”, his voice sounded more colder. “Why did you call?”

“I guess you got my mail.”

“So, it was you. What else do you know?”, his voice softened.

“Enough to bury you, Danny. That was just a glimpse of the video. I know about you Senator friend. That’s too in the clip. Imagine what can happen if Federal Agent Frederick Keller wakes up in the morning and receives a CD along with the newspaper? I don’t think you will like that, would you?”

“You are not going to do anything like that, Mike.”, I could sense the fear in his voice. He tried hiding that by raising his voice.

“Exactly, I would want that either. Let’s make a deal.”

“What deal exactly?”, Danny was inquisitive.

“I hand you the only copy of the CD and keep my mouth shut. You spare my life as well as Tom’s too. You broke your promise to Tom, that he’d be free. He wouldn’t mind that if you are ready for the deal.”

“I usually don’t make deals, but this time I am ready to. Meet me at the old place.”

“No no no. We are not falling for that. You meet us at the place we want. Alone. Tomorrow at dawn. Deal?”

“But where?”

“I will text you. Keep your phone on. But is it a deal? Do you agree?”

“I guess I have no choice but to comply.”, Danny sounded displeased but he knew he had no choice.

“Wait for my text.” And I hung up the phone.

I looked at Tom. “Bait placed.”, I grinned.

“Now to do the same with the Feds. Cohen would still want us out. He won’t come alone. We will need backup. Gimme the phone.”

I handed Tom the phone.

“Use the second new SIM. That one is untraceable.”, I said. Tom nodded.

Soon, his calling agent Keller was done. His smile showed that we would have backup at the right time.

It was about 3:15 am then. There was about a couple hours to dawn left. The night grew colder. We grabbed some canned food Tom has previously stored in the cabin. The light of the bulb was now all over the room. It no more was dim. He were eating and speaking.

“You still think of Ellie, Tom?” I asked, “Still blame yourself?

Tom looked up to me, while still chewing the food in his mouth. He cleared his throat and started speaking.

“I know and it is God’s truth that I have sinned. I had to pay. All those lives I took, I realize now, how their families felt.”

“I feel the same now.”, I sighed. “Betty was like my own girl.”

“Good that you understand now. Tomorrow we redeem ourselves. At least do one good thing in our entire lives by taking out Cohen.”

“Yeah, I am dying to put a bullet in his skull.”, I said in a sharp voice.

We finished eating and then finally opened the bag we had bought from Tom’s house. I smiled to when I saw the contents inside. There were Beretta 9mm, a .45 magnum revolver, a Remington 1100 shotgun and plenty of ammo.

“Merry Christmas.”, I chuckled, picking up the Remington 1100. Tom grinned as he picked up the .45 magnum.

 

 

Bullet to the head : Part I

 

It was dawn. The sunlight came in through the window. The place was very beautiful, I walked out to see. The cabin was surrounded by the woods on three sides. The fourth side had the narrow rocky road that lead to the highway. Sunlight came in through the trees.  A cool breeze was blowing. I would hate to leave such a place bloody.

Tom had texted both Cohen and Keller about our location about half an hour ago, while I kept a lookout. If Keller arrived with force first, we would persuade him to hide with his men in the woods, waiting for our signal, so that he can arrest Cohen red-handed making the deal. Of course we didn’t know that we would kill Cohen before he could arrest Cohen. And if Cohen arrived first, we would just have to fight our way through his goons and kill him.

Sometime later I could hear car engine noise far away. I moved inside.

“Get ready, someone is coming.”, I said, pulling the shutter of my shotgun. I also had a Beretta tucked at the belt of my pants.

“Okay, let’s do this.”, tom got up from the chair, grapping the .45 magnum.

I kept a look out through the window. I saw a car approaching. It was Cohen’s black 1970s Cadillac. But there was only one car. That was surprising. Danny would come alone.

“Hey Tom, any other way into the woods?”, I asked.

“No.”

“So no way Danny’s goons can reach us if not this road?”

“No, never.”

“He is coming alone.”, I said, sharply.

“Maybe he is planning something else. Be careful, kid.. Be ready.”, Tom’s voice was strong and determined.

I nodded. We stood pointing our guns at the door.

We could hear the car outside the doors. The engine stopped, and the sound of the door opening and closing. And then the sound of footsteps on the pebbles. We took cover on either sides of the door as Tom open it slowly and peeked.

“Hes alone.”, Tom said.

We left our cover and stood at ease. Danny Cohen stood a few feet away from the door, his elegant self as usual. He slowly moved towards the door. He took steps backwards into the cabin, pointing our guns at him. He slowly entered through the door. Our guns still pointed at him.

“Well gentlemen.”, he spoke, in his usual calm and cold voice, “I am here. Let the deal go down. By the way, nice to see you Tom. What’s it been? Six years?”

“Guess so.”, Tom was steady, his voice determined.

“So hand me the CD. And I let you live. Both of you.”, Cohen said looking directly in my eyes. The guy had a cold vision. Cold as ice.

“What if we don’t?”, I said, in a heavy voice. “What if I just blow your brains out here?”

Cohen stared strongly at me.

I kept speaking, “You tried killing me, you tried killing Tom. And damn you, you killed Betty. She was just about twenty three? Why should I spare you?” , I raised the shotgun directly to Cohen’s face.

Cohen was still so calm. That ruthless animal had no fear.

“Why the hell I am talking to you so much? I would rather shoot.” , I said. As I was just going to pull the trigger, I heard Tom’s voice, “You really won’t want to do that.”

I turned to see Tom pointing the .45 magnum directly at my head. I was shocked and speechless.

“Tom? What are you doing?”, I asked out of surprise. “Are you out of your mind?”, I shouted. Tom grinned at me.

I could hear Cohen blood chilling voice. “I never come unprepared, Michael.”

 

 

Bullet to the head : Part II

 

I could see the clear astonishment in Michael’s face. Poor Michael. He got much more than he bargained for. The .45 magnum revolver held firmly in my hand and pointed directly at his face. I was ready to shoot any moment.

“Well, Mike.” I said. “But sorry about this. I always told you not to work for Danny. You wouldn’t listen.”

“But…but, why, Tom? Why are you doing this?”, Michael asked, looking at me.

“Let me explain.” Danny said. By this time Danny has snatched the shotgun from Michael’s hand. And I had taken out the pistol he had. Michael seemed helpless.

Danny continued, “Tom never stopped working for me. Instead he left the department and became a full-fledged partner in my business.” Michael was even more shocked and turned to me, inquisitively.

“Yes Mike….”, I said, “….. I am a 30% shareholder of Danny’s business. That’s why Danny set me free. As you know I wasn’t in this city for last five years. I came back a couple of months earlier. Well, I was out working for Danny. Setting up new connections in other cities and other states. Expanding business.”

“Yes, I always trusted him. I knew his loyalty was the best of all my men.” , This time Danny spoke.

“But you regret your sins. What about Ellie and Marie? You think they died for you sins, you told me that”, Michael asked. His face was of a kid. Couldn’t believe the world around him.

“Oh God ! You believed that sin part?”, I sighed, “As for Marie and Ellie, they never died. They were never in that car. It was all a setup to make everyone believe I regretted my sins so I was leaving working for Danny.”

“So why play me all this time? Why Tom?”, Michael shouted. “Answer me Goddammit.”

“Well, then, here we go.” I started.

“After the Polish loss, I set up Danny a deal with a businessman and Senator. Yes, me. It was my work. I came back to his city. To see if everything was going on well. The meeting with the DA went on smooth as well. And I wasn’t worried about Kelly James until I got the information that he worked for Old Man Jerry. We realized the DA’s was bugged. I got my trusted men, men who nobody knows in this town, to keep an eye on Kelly. And I was pretty sure Jerry knew everything. So we needed a plan. We had you kill Kelly. Then I and Danny plan the next move. We needed to take out anybody who could be a threat to us. I included you. And also Pat and Gary. This is because you all killed for Danny. Your testimony could have been critical for us.”

“So you sent them to kill me? And planned of killing them later?”, Mike asked.

“No, we sent them because I had faith in you. That you would kill them and come to me. I knew you this much. The other guy with them was collateral damage. And the shooter at my apartment was also a ruse. I knew he’d be there. And Danny too. Danny fired the first bullet that missed me. It was supposed to. Then he fired around the window. He crouched to reload. He then made one of his men who had taken with him, who was crouching all the time till then, to stand up and shoot. At least the guy thought so. I shot him. You thought I killed the killer.”

“But why all this?”, Mike asked. “And why did you kill Betty, you ruthless monster? I am ashamed to call you my friend.” He was visibly angry now.

“Well, Danny ordered his men to kill Betty. It was needed. I needed the anger and remorse in you. It would have been more believable for Jerry.”

“Aren’t you ashamed of yourself? You killed a girl just that my remorse was believable to Jerry?”, Mike shouted.

“No I am not. You are not a saint. We are all sinners. That’s what we are. We were sinners. We are sinners. All of a sudden you want to be a saint? No I am not ashamed because it would help us get the proof Jerry had. And also to know how much he knew. That was our ultimate goal. To retrieve the proof against Danny. Remember the mail I sent. It was a signal that I have the proof. Continue as planned. Danny got the signal. And by now Jerry is dead. Burnt alive in a fire in his restaurant. With all his proof and all. Goodbye, Old Man Jerry. And you, you were just a pawn. We played you. I played you from the very beginning. Like I am playing you now. I didn’t call any Feds last night. I never texted any Federal Agent where we are. No one is coming to save you kid.”

“And now its time for you to die kid.” Danny said. Michael looked at him. And then turned and looked at me. He stared at my eyes. I didn’t see fear. But only shock in his eyes. My hand was still firm. The .45 magnum pointed directly at Michael’s forehead.

“We all sinned my friend. We have to pay for our sins. I haven’t had to yet.  But your day has come. Someday mine will too, I am sure of that. But till that day, I wanna live my life. Till that day I am loyal to Danny Cohen. We all will die. And none of us will go to heaven kid. He are all lined for hell so don’t take it personally. Its just business..” I said, pulling the trigger.

 

*****

 


© Copyright 2017 Rick Jordan. All rights reserved.

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