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chapter 7

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Johnny Slipknot

Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 39
Location: The Burned City
chapter 7  Reply with quote  

Mercer sat completely still behind the wheel of his BMW.
He was parked in his driveway and had been for the last half-hour. A large gray cat hopped up and padded across the hood of the car. Getting no response from the man, the cat cleaned its face and moved on. It was close to three o’clock in the morning and there was a chill in the air. Mercer ignored that, too.
“Fuck!” he shouted suddenly, and slammed his fist into the dashboard three times. The cat looked over his shoulder and regarded the car and driver with cool contempt. It had come a little late, but that was the reaction the cat had been looking for.
In the car, Mercer wiped his mouth with the back of his hand. He pulled his little black cell phone from his jacket and pushed the power button. It had been off only once in the last two years and that was the last half-hour. He started to hit the auto-dial but quickly turned the power back off. For this call, he needed to be standing. Opening the glove compartment, he pulled out an ancient pack of Newport’s and got out.
Once he had taken a few good puffs, he turned on the phone and hit the dialer. It rang only once.
“It’s Mercer, sir.” He waited for a response and got none. “The meeting…” he pinched the bridge of his nose. “The meeting didn’t go as planned.”
There was a pause.
“I see.”
“I’m very sorry sir.”
“Yes, of course.” As Mercer waited, he spotted the cat sitting on the mailbox staring at him. Mercer wanted to pull his gun and blow its head off. His employer’s voice pulled him back to the phone.
“I suppose you had best secure the money then, until I’ve decided how to proceed.”
Mercer swallowed hard. He tried to make his voice sound calm.
“The subject has the money.”
Another pause.
“I see.” There was no surprise in the voice.
Mercer decided to take the conversation inside. If he were going to squirm, he wouldn’t do it the driveway. He crushed out the cigarette on the heel of his shoe and headed to the front door of the rented house.
“Sir, if I may, the subject said he had the codes set up to be revealed in a certain time frame. If we had disposed of him or not given him the money…I thought it best not to risk it.” He unlocked the door and stepped inside.
“Mr. Mercer.” The voice on the phone said.
“Yes sir?” He knew what was coming. His gut tightened.
“I believe you have done all you can to help me with this matter. I will be bringing in someone to take up your responsibilities. I’m sure you understand.”
And there it was. He felt horribly small. “Yes sir, I suppose I do.”
“I will put together all the data I have obtained and turn it over to my replacement, sir.”
“Thank you Mr. Mercer. That is very kind.”
“When will I be meeting him, sir?”
“Any second now, I believe.”
Mercer looked up just as the bullet took him in the middle of his forehead. His little black cellphone fell to the floor where it was soon joined by Mercer’s dead body.


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