Episode 2: A Declaration of Principles
Posted 29 August 2004 - 10:35 AM
Father would be turning in his grave.
There was a knock at the door, and Tielli, the latest in the increasing fleet of family lawyers, entered. "Sir..."
"I know, thank you, Tielli," said Jorro. "Kindly keep this information from my sister. She may seem strong-willed, but she can be as irrational as any other female, given the opportunity..."
Tielli smiled. "That's just peachy, sir."
Jorro sighed. "It's been quite a day, Tielli. I need you to look into the legal implications of my getting married. Will it give her family any legitimacy over the house? We've come too far to leave the door open to loopholes."
"I'll get onto that, but I should think you'll be OK. Who's the young lady?"
"You're not paid to ask questions, only to answer them," snapped Jorro.
After Tielli had beaten a hasty retreat, Jorro poured himself a large vermouth and gin. The day had been long enough already.
Posted 29 August 2004 - 12:25 PM
A figure walked in and, after scanning the cafe, approached her table, holding out his hand.
"Victoria O'Malley. A pleasure."
He was here.
Posted 29 August 2004 - 03:07 PM
There were a number of cars parked outside. The Man's men stood around outside, smoking and chatting idlly. They were all carrying weapons.
Vinny slowed the car to a crawl. He changed down a gear and winced at the pain in his arm where he'd been hit.
The Man had been very quick off the mark this time. They must have turned over every back alley dive and every club, questioned every gun for hire in the city, even the ones of The Man's pay roll. Vinny smiled at the term "questioned." One of The Man's most loyal boys, Frankie La Salle, could wreck your guts with his body blows. You'd die a slow burn death; hours, maybe even days of agony, before finally succumbing to internal bleeds. After a couple of his punches, you caved in.
"Big Knife" Jimmy was even worse. Apparently, he'd once inscribed his name on the genitals of one of his victims. The guy hadn't died, but he'd shot himself out of shame. I mean, who wanted someone elses name on your equipment?
They'd have got their information from someone. The assassin, Tommy, must have been a loud mouth: a bragger. What was the point of doing a hit if people didn't know you were reponsible? Vinny wondered if they'd caught the boy. This little vendetta would have to wait. Vinny smiled, he was a patient man. He could wait.
He heard shots and grimaced.
After a few moments, one of the Man's Lieutenant's came strolling out of the place with two heavies. They were joking with each other. One of the big thugs paused, bent down, and wiped something off his shoe. He said something and they laughed again.
Vinny shook his head. The Man would come after him. The Man who he had committed his life to. Johnny's actions would have tarred them with the same brush. The Man would hunt him down.
He considered what to do as he watched The Man's men climb into their cars and drive off in convoy. A woman was screaming, somewhere inside the house.
Vinny knew what he had to do. He had to get the hell out of the city. He had to leave, right away. Wait for it to blow over, he thought, remembering all the gangster movies he had watched. The Man was reasonable, most of the time. Johnny was just dead because The Man would be fuming right now. Someone had tried to assassinate him, after all. But give it a few months. A few years, a part of him thought and Vinny could come back, explain the circumstances, ask for another job.
But not now. No. Now, he had to get out.
He started the engine, turned the car and drove away. Away from The Man, away from Johnny's twitching corpse and away from The City.
Posted 29 August 2004 - 05:42 PM
This was why Jed had ordered witness statements to be taken from everybody in the building. There were police officers crawling everywhere, and he was one of them, serving little more worth than the average uniform officer. Jed knew that the chief had ties to the Man and would want this tied up quickly, but he also knew that the Man would provide little help in identifying any enemies he had. Jed guessed that he had more than a handful who wanted to see him dead, but the mayor had his own way of doing things. Often the mayor’s problems would miraculously sort themselves out.
The door of the next apartment swung open to reveal a young lady. She was almost half Jed’s age but dashingly beautiful. “What’s your name madam?”
“Lauren,” she replied.
“Did you see anything of the incident in the park? Perhaps some suspicious behaviour in the corridor?”
“Sorry officer, I didn’t see anything,” she replied with a smile.
“Do you live here alone?”
“No. My husband lives here with me,” she turned, her back to Jed. “Darling?” she called into the room. A man lumbered up behind Lauren, looking concerned towards the policeman standing outside the door. As his face moved out of the shadow of the apartment, Jed was almost sick to his stomach.
Posted 30 August 2004 - 11:33 AM
“One wrong move and your head gets blown off,” Jed ordered with authority. He had never been one for guns, but in this case needs must. He gesticulated forwards with the gun, being careful to make sure it was still pointed at the man he had confronted. “Step back into your apartment. Take a seat.”
Anger and rage were building up inside Jed, and he could almost have killed in that instant, but he kept himself under control. The man in front of him was dangerous, and if Jed took his mind off the situation for an instant, he could end up dead. He knew the man was dangerous, because he’d seen him entering D’Arbo’s restaurant minutes before shots had been fired. Bodies riddled with bullets were found, but one body had been conspicuous in its absence. The body of the killer. The body of the man he was staring at now.
Jed had his pistol pointed at a mafia hitman.
Davey wasn’t used to having a gun pointed at him. Usually he was the one doing the pointing, and therefore it disturbed him that this policeman had gained the upper hand of the situation. Although Davey kept guns around the house, he was unarmed and given that a highly trained officer of the force was pointing a gun straight at his head he had little chance of making it to anything he could use to defend himself.
“D’Arbo’s restaurant. Eight people dead. You were the killer,” the policeman uttered the words in an unmoving tone. Davey’s first instinct was to deny the murders, but he realised that the officer hadn’t been asking a question. He had been making a statement.
The policeman moved in closer, pressing the barrel of the pistol against Davey’s forehead. “Who do you work for?” Davey sat silent, sweating for several minutes before the officer shouted again, “Who do you work for?”
The Man wouldn’t be understanding if Davey answered that question, Davey knew. But Davey also knew one other thing : he didn’t want to die.
At first Jed thought ‘The Man’ had been a lie, but he became increasingly convinced that the scumbag in front of him was telling the truth. He shaking, nervous, and Lauren had crawled into a corner of the apartment, paralysed by fear. Jed pulled the D’Arbo case file from his pocket and dropped it in front of his hostage, rifling through the sheets of paper to find the appropriate photograph.
The photograph of the man he’d seen on the night of his son’s death. Jed asked the important question. “Who is this man?”
Davey struggled to spill the beans fast enough. “He’s my driver – a driver – who works for the Man. Or he did.”
“Why did you kill him?”
”Orders came down from the boss. Some employees were proving too … forthcoming with information. They had to be terminated. He was one of them,” Davey explained with the pistol still pointed straight at his head.
“Have you ever killed a child?”
“No … of course not. I’d never do such a thing.”
Jed pulled back the trigger. “I want the truth.”
People always suggested that the best solution was to tell the truth. That coming clean would somehow lift a weight from your conscience, and that things would turn out fine in the end. For once in his life, Davey chose to tell the truth, even if his decision was influenced by the loaded pistol ready to end his feeble existence. Davey later considered that telling the truth and not allowing Jed to kill him was the worst decision he’d ever made.
Had he known the pain his decision would cause, Davey would likely have taken the easy way out. Instead, he told Jed how ten years ago the Man had hired him to eliminate certain families that were no longer beneficial to the city’s existence. They were meant to be completely purged, but a few children had escaped. In the course of the search for the children, Davey had mistaken Jed’s son for one of the children and killed him. A simple mistake, but one Jed did not seem eager to forgive.
Had Davey’s eyes not been closed he might have contemplated and the fact that tears were running down Jed’s cheeks and decided he was not the most vulnerable person in the confrontation. The apartment fell into a silence following the admission of guilt, a silence that might have ended with a gunshot or a thunderous outburst. Instead it ended with a simple statement.
“You took everything from me. To pay it back I’m going to take your wife, I’m going to take your child, and then I’m going to end your miserable existence.” Jed uttered the threats, but was utterly calm as he did so.
Posted 30 August 2004 - 05:05 PM
"Hey Pete, it's me Jake. Open the door." he cried.
"Either he can't hear you over the banging or he's gone out Jake," said Serpico.
Jake frowned before kicking the door in. Serpico looked at him in astonishment.
"Don't you have to give a warning before you do that?"
"Only if you want a chase,"
"But it says in the Rulebook..."
"The Rulebook don't mean shit on the street," said Jake before stepping through the door "Now are you coming?"
Serpico sighed and followed him in. The room was ill-kept and smelt of sweat.
"Open the curtain, Kid" said Jake walking over to the bed and pulling back the covers, revealing a yellowing sheet beneath. Serpico went across and opened the curtains. Light streamed in. Dust glittered in the brightness. Jake walked over to a small desk whilst Serpico just watched: it had been quite a first day.
"Damn," cursed Jake, picking up a piece of paper.
"What is it?" asked Serpico trying to steal a glance.
"A To-Do List. My brother always was forgetful."
"What's it say?"
"Number 1, place gun on rooftop, outside Pintocha Cafe"
"That's where we had coffee!" cried Serpico in surprise.
"Yeah, and it's where a certain someone is meant to be having dinner,"
"What do we do Jake?"
"Hope we're not too late,"
Posted 30 August 2004 - 05:09 PM
THE OCEANS PEAK INQUIRER
June12th, 1938 LATE EDITION
Rookie Saves The Man From Certain Death
Second Attempt on Life in Hours
By Lance Capri
The Man is currently resting in an undisclosed location after surviving a second assassination attempt within 24 hours. His rally earlier in the day had been interupted by an attempt on his life by an unknown assassin, who has yet to be caught. Organised Crime Gangs are currently under suspicion. However, a further attempt was made on his life in local café Pintocha Cafe where he was believed to be having dinner with an unknown female. The shot, which was fired from the roof of a building opposite, would have certainly killed The Man had it not been for two of OP-PD's finest: Detective Jake O'Malley and Serpico Pirbright. Acting on information recieved, the two officers entered the café moments before the shot was fired, with Officer Pirbright dragging The Man to the ground just in time. The gun has been taken in for... Cont. pg 4, 5, 6, 8, 9