“Damn it James,” the police chief said to me at City Hall. “You’re a murderous bastard, but you get results. The rifle in Charles Krauthammer’s exploded car matches the ballistics in LP Anderson’s killing perfectly. Well done.”
“Thank you sir.”
“Good job James,” Officer Maxwell said. I nodded back.
“The mayor will be pleased with this despite the property damage done to the city of Long Beach,” the Chief continued. “Please turn in your badge. Your work here is done.”
I took out my badge and looked at it. “I’d still like to clear out a few of the suspects before this case is closed,” I told the Chief. “I want to be certain that the same shooter that killed LP is also our serial killer.”
Maxwell spoke up. “Our department has conclusively determined that Charles Krauthammer is our killer.”
“You did an excellent job here James,” the Chief said. “No need to second guess yourself. You’re one hell of a detective.”
I handed over the badge.
“Gentlemen,” I said. “It’s been an honor serving the Los Angeles Police Department.”
I returned to my office.
“Is there anything I can do for you James,” Izzy asked. “Coffee, sandwich, drink, hand job? Please let me do something for you.”
“I just want to be left alone for awhile,” I replied.
I shut the door to the office, closed the blinds, and pulled out a bottle of bourbon…the last one LP and me shared. I poured a glass and raised a toast.
“So long LP,” I said.
Seconds later there was a knock on the door.
“Office hours are closed,” I shouted.
The door opened and our Mystery Officer, the one I threatened to shoot at City Hall while shittin and pissin, came in. He sat down and put his feet on the desk.
“You think you’re so smart don’t ya,” he asked.
“Charles Krauthammer is dead and you can play the hero.”
“What are you on about?”
Officer Mystery sat up in his seat and leaned in. “There’s a lot more to this story than you can possibly imagine.”
I took out another glass and poured him a bourbon. “Talk,” I said.
“Your friends at City Hall, you did them a favor by killing Charles. You did their dirty work. You covered their tracks.”
“Charles was a patsy. Sure he killed your boy LP, but he’s just one man. You and me both know that crime in this city runs deep. Those prostitutes up in the hills? That’s the work of someone else…or someones.”
“Stop jackin me around. Spit it out. Who’s behind this?”
“Here lies Lucinda Patricia Arquette Anderson,” spoke the priest at the funeral. “He was brutally stabbed in the throat, nearly decapitated, by sadistic killer that’s still on the loose and terrorizing Los Angeles as we speak.”
Stacy Anderson was weeping in front of his casket. Her two children, Brutus and Laquisha, were also in attendance.
“Your husband was a good man Mrs. Anderson,” I told her.
“He spoke very highly of you,” she said as she wiped away the tears. “He hoped that someday you two could run a train on me. He wanted you to take me from behind while he sat in the shadows and masturbated. I’m gonna miss him.”
She broke down in tears again.
“If you or your family ever need anything,” I said. “Just give me a call.”
As I walking back to my car, the LAPD Chief came up and decked me in the face.
“You got my best officer killed,” he said. “If the mayor didn’t think so highly of you, I’d take you up to the hills and bury you alive!”
I got up and wiped the blood from my nose. “Chief,” I said. “I had a major breakthrough on this case. Give me another week and I’ll have this killer in custody.”
The Chief grabbed me by the coat and pushed me against the car. “One more week,” he said. “If this son of a bitch is not dead or behind bars, you’re gonna have a bigger problem than some serial killer.”
Officer Maxwell pulled the Chief off of me and cooled him down. I lit up a cigarette.
“We found another body. Up in Melrose,” Maxwell said to me.
“What’s the plan now?”
“I’m going after him.”
“What’s his name?”
Maxwell nodded. “Let me know if you need my assistance.”
I flicked away my cigarette and nodded back. “I’ll let you know.”
I drove down to Long Beach at night, past the doppers, pimps, and prostitutes. “If only I could bust all of you,” I said to myself
I pulled up to the strip club. “Where can I find Charles,” I asked the bartender.
“Who’s asking,” the man replied.
I grabbed him by the wife beater and flashed my badge. “LAPD,” I said.
“He’s in the VIP room.”
And there was Charles getting a lap dance. I shoved a hundred dollar bill in the stripper’s underwear and told her to beat it. I sat down next to him.
“Sorry man,” Charles said. “If you’re looking to buy, I ain’t selling.”
I pressed my 357 up to his rib cage.
“I ain’t buying,” I replied. “I’m taking. You’re coming with me.”
He raised his hands. “What’s this about?”
“Sgt. LP Anderson.”
He lowered his hands and began to laugh. “I read about him in the papers. Sorry to hear about your loss, copper.”
“I’m gonna bust ya”
“For what? You can’t link me to his death.”
The bartender quietly snuck around the corner. I caught him out of the corner of my eye before he fired his shotgun. I fell to the ground and pumped three bullets into his chest. Charles escaped.
Strippers and patrons scattered out of the bar when the shots rang. I fired another shot into Charles’ rear windshield as he sped away in his 97 Cutlass.
I pursued him in my Chevy SSR. I was able to easily overtake him as I fired a round into his front passenger tire. Sparks flew as he drifted back and forth across the road before crashing into a guardrail.
His car teetered over the edge of a cliff overlooking the beach. The morning sun was starting to rise. I walked over to the car.
“Help me man,” he yelped. Charles was trying not to disturb the balance of the vehicle.
I stood there and glared.
“You can’t let me die! You’re a cop!”
I kicked the side of the vehicle and it went careening down to the rocky beach below.
LP and I got rip roarin drunk on the stakeout. We shared some laughs while we sat on a rooftop in Culver City over night. We watched the airplanes fly overhead as they began their descent into LAX.
“You know,” LP said. “I watched this city go to hell in a hand basket. When I joined the force, I wanted to serve my community. I wanted to do some good. Instead the city got worse.”
“The city’s always been a shithole, LP,” I replied.
“20 years I’ve been a cop. I’m really looking forward to retirement.”
I took a big hit off the Evan Williams green label and handed it over. “Just take a knee for the rest of your career,” I said. “Pick up your retirement check and take Stacy to Jamaica like you’ve always wanted. You’re just one man, you can’t change this city. No one can.”
LP looked down the scope of the M82 sniper rifle. Something caught his eye.
“Hey James, check this out. Get one hand free.”
As I peeped out through a windows cross the street, there was a woman decked out in BDSM whipping some poor sap with a contraption over his cock.
“That’s disgusting LP.”
He laughed and looked back through the scope. “Oh yeah! I wish Stacy would do that to me!”
LP’s finger slipped and he accidentally fired a round. The glass to the woman’s window shattered and the bullet hit the man on his bare ass.
“What are you doing LP?”
“Sorry. Got trigger happy,” he replied with a smile.
I looked up to the roof of the woman’s building and there was a sniper pointing his rifle at us.
“Get down LP!”
We dropped to the ground and the sniper opened fire. “Give me your 357, James. I’m going after him,” LP said. “Stay up here and return fire.”
LP ran down the fire escape and into the building next door. As the sniper reloaded, I got up and fired several shots. When I looked back through the scope, no one was there.
I took out a 9mm and ran down the stairs. As I approached the building, the sniper ran out the front door and fired his pistol in my direction.
Just then, Officer Maxwell pulled up in his patrol car. “Go check on LP,” I commanded. “He’s inside!”
I chased after the perpetrator. When I got a clear shot, I fired indiscriminately in his direction and emptied the clip. However, I lost him down the dark alleyways of Culver City.
I ran back to the building. “I’m sorry James,” Officer Maxwell said. There in the stairwell was LP’s lifeless body.
He was stabbed in the throat. I picked up the 357 from LPs hands. He didn’t get a shot off.
“Did you get a look at the killer,” Maxwell asked.
I shook my head.
“The chief’s gonna be pissed,” he replied.
I returned to City Hall. It was still dark. I was looking for the mystery officer I threatened to shoot on the toilet earlier.
He was sneaking around the bushes. He was looking for a place to piss. When I tackled him, his dick was still out and piss went everywhere. I put the 357 to his forehead.
“LP is dead,” I said.
“I had nothing to do with that!”
“I ain’t telling you shit!”
I cocked the 357. “Listen here mother fucker,” I said. “I’m clinically insane. Have you never heard of me? I’ve probably killed 152 people and I’m ready to kill the 153rd. If you don’t give me a name, I’ll splatter your brains all over City Hall. Do not play with me!”
The mystery man finished pissing himself. “Alright alright,” he said. “Look, there’s a man named Charles Krauthammer. He lives in the basement at a strip club in Long Beach. He might be your man.”
“How do you know him?”
“I can’t tell you that. They’ll kill me.”
I let the man go and wrote him a citation.
“What’s this for,” he asked.
“Now that I’m a cop, I’m giving you a citation for public indecency. Have fun on the sex offender registry. I’ll see you in court.”
I hadn’t been to Tony’s on 4th in weeks. He brought me a Philly cheesesteak with extra grease. I told him it was my birthday and was ready for an early grave.
“Oh hell, James. It looks like the pawn shop next door is getting robbed. Should I call the police?”
I pulled out my 357.
“Don’t lift a finger you fat, stupid mother fucker. I’ll take care of it.”
I walked outside and the robbers were loading merchandise into the trunk of their Pontiac.
They looked up and one of them fired off a 12 gauge. It grazed my right arm. Nevertheless, I managed to unleashed my 357, killing two of them.
The last one ran off. I fired off another round, blasting a hole in his leg. As he laid there bleeding out, I walked up to him and lifted my gun.
“Now I know what you’re thinking,” I said. “Did I fire 8 shots, or only 7?”
“You shot 3! Please don’t shoot me again!”
“Are you sure? Pretty sure I shot 7.”
“Please sir! Call an ambulance! I’m dying here!”
“Well I think today is your lucky day.” I cocked the 357 and a bullet fired out, splattering his brains all over the concrete.
“Holy shit, he was right. I did only fire 3.”
I was in the hospital all night while they sowed up my arm. I couldn’t sleep. LP nudged me the next morning at City Hall.
“Wake up,” he said. “The mayor’s speaking.”
I sat up in the seat and took my feet off the table. LP handed me a cup of coffee.
“Crime has gone up fivefold since I took office,” said Mayor Tortellini. “At this rate, I won’t get re-elected. This killer on the loose, what’s he called?”
“The Hillside Choker, sir,” the LA police chief responded.
“We must stop this killer, this coward, from choking again. He must be behind bars before election season next year.”
The mayor looked around the room. “Does anyone here have any pressing information regarding this case?”
LP stood up.
“I do sir. The rise in crime appears to be linked to the Hillside murders,” he said.
“Obviously, dipshit. Does anybody here have anything else,” the mayor replied.
I stood up.
“I think what LP means, Mr. Mayor, is that the Hillside Choker is motivated specifically by the rise in crime. All of his victims appear to be drug dealers, thieves, pimps, prostitutes, etc. The killer might think of himself as some sort of vigilante,” I said.
“And you are?”
“James, Mr. Mayor. Private Detective.”
“I’ve heard a lot about you,” the mayor said. “Admiral Majors speaks very highly of you. He told me all about your escapades in Nicaragua.”
“Correction sir, it was Honduras. And with all due respect, Admiral Majors is the dumbest man I’ve ever met.”
“Nevertheless, I am deputizing you for the duration of this case. Welcome to the Los Angeles Police Department. Please don’t destroy this city like you did to Honduras.”
“Thank you sir.”
“This meeting is adjourned.”
LP got up and patted me on the back. “It looks like we’re partners now.” We shared a few laughs and I grabbed my coat.
As I was leaving, I caught a familiar stranger glancing at me. It was the same police officer from Malibu and San Luis Obispo stalking me. He scampered off into the bathroom.
I followed him in.
I kicked open the stall door and pulled out my 357.
“Caught ya asshole,” I said.
While sitting on the shitter, he raised his hands.
“You don’t know what you’re getting yourself into James,” the man said.
I cocked the gun back. “Well you better tell me now or you’ve taken your last shit.”
“You can’t kill me here.”
“Haven’t you heard? I’ve been deputized. I can kill with impunity.”
At that moment, LP came in. “Drop it, James,” he said. “He’s not worth it.”
I lowered my gun. The mystery man got up, flushed the toilet, and washed his hands. “I’ll be seeing you around,” he said, and left the bathroom.
“Who is that guy, LP?”
“You’re in the LAPD now, James. There’s some questions you just don’t ask.”
“I got you something for your birthday,” Izzy said as she handed me an oak case.
“Oh Izzy, you shouldn’t have!”
I opened the case and inside was a Korth 357 Magnum.
“How did you know?” I asked.
“I’ve been reading your journals. As you know, I’ve been obsessed with you these last few weeks. Oh please James! Bend me over your desk and have your way with me! I’d do anything for you,” Izzy replied.
“You’re my secretary. I don’t mix business with pleasure.”
Moments later, Sgt. LP Anderson of the LAPD came into the office. His tie was undone and holding a cup of coffee. He was absolutely chain smoking.
“You look like dog shit, LP,” I said.
“Can I have a moment alone with you, James?”
I asked Izzy to leave the office. After she shut the door, LP lit up another cigarette.
“The bodies of 20 dead prostitutes showed up in Griffith Park last week,” he said. “The streets are getting out of hand James.”
“I believe the correct term is ‘Ladies of the Night’, LP.”
“There’s a killer on the loose. He’s been toying with us. He left a note on one of the bodies.”
LP handed me the note and I read it over.
“This guy’s sick. And racist,” I said. “Have any of the bodies been Vietnamese?”
“That’s the thing, they’ve all been white women.”
I lit up a cigarette of my own and pulled out a bottle of bourbon. “Care for a shot,” I asked. “I stole it off Franco De Werner on my last case.”
I poured some into his coffee cup.
“So what do you want me to do,” I asked.
“I’m asking you on behalf of the LAPD to assist with the investigation. Our detectives are overworked. We need a fresh set of eyes to look over the evidence. There’s something that we’re missing and you know these streets better than anyone.”
I poured the bourbon into my flask. “You can count on me, LP.”
“We have a meeting with the mayor tomorrow. He doesn’t want this information to leak out to the public. He’s also questioning our competence regarding this case. I want you to be there, to help out his mind at ease.”
“You got it.”
LP stood up. “And one other thing, we’re staging a stakeout in Culver City next week. We think we might have a lead. Bring all the protection you need. We might run into some trouble.”
I lifted up my brand new 357 magnum. “Don’t worry,” I said. “I’ve been itching to try this thing out. Izzy got it for my birthday.”
Franco stuffed his face with Chile con queso and guacamole. When he finished, he pulled out a cigar.
“Time to get this show on the road,” he said.
Franco ran his golden eye through the retinal scan, which initiated a countdown. He laughed as he lit up the cigar. When the clock reached zero, the computer informed us that all fifty missiles were launched, all aimed at the fifty largest cities in the Western Hemisphere.
“We better get the fuck outta here,” Franco said. “We don’t want to be on the ground when those warheads hit.”
Angelika, myself, Franco, and a few of his minions boarded the private jet. When we were up in the air, Franco was still amused with himself.
“In 19 minutes,” he said as he puffed on his cigar. “We’ll be the richest fuckers in the universe.”
Then he leaned forward as his stomach cramped.
“Damn it,” Franco said. “Montezuma’s Revenge.” He got up and ran to the toilet.
I looked over to the steel briefcase that controlled the warheads. “James, do something!” Angelika yelled.
I swiftly leapt out of my seat and kicked the guard in the dick. “Ow! My groin,” he yelled as he fell to the ground.
With the guard incapacitated, I opened the briefcase and attempted to redirect the missiles. However, I didn’t know how to operate the computer.
“Remove the handcuffs James, I know how to do it,” Angelika said. I took the keys off the guard and set her free. She redirected the missiles into space, where they’d all converge to create one massive explosion.
Moments later, the sky lit up…almost as if there were two suns resting on the horizon.
“Congratulations Angelika, you saved the world,” I said.
“We still have a problem,” she replied. “One missile is not responding to the commands. It’s headed straight for Mexico City.”
I thought for a moment.
“What’s our flight path?”
I busted into the cockpit and knocked out the two pilots with the butt of my rifle. “Our path takes us near Mexico City. We can intercept the missile with this jet,” I said.
I took control of the cockpit in an attempt to steer the jet into the missile. I never flew a plane of that magnitude before. I flew a Cessna once. I figured that flying a Lear at 745mph couldn’t be that different.
“Two minutes to intercept,” Angelika yelled as she was putting on a parachute. I climbed out of the cockpit and began strapping into one on as well.
I kicked open the emergency exit and the cabin depressurized. At that moment, Franco ran out of the bathroom and began firing his Ruger. Angelika grabbed his arm and attempted to knock it out.
“Jump James!” she yelled.
I jumped out of the plane. Angelika engaged with Franco for a few more moments before throwing him out of the plane without a parachute. Then she jumped.
The missile crashed into the Lear, detonating the last nuclear weapon several thousand feet above us. We deployed our parachutes. When we were 20 feet above the ground, Franco rifled out of the sky like a lightning bolt, grabbing ahold of me and crashing us into the ground from his tremendous momentum.
Franco somehow managed to keep his cigar in.
We wrestled on the ground, with him getting the better of me. When Angelika landed, not even she could overtake him. I took out my Beretta, but Franco kicked it out.
While I was laying on the ground, Franco grabbed the gun and aimed it at me.
“Goodbye, Mr. Private Dick.”
The wind then kicked up and my parachute blew on top of him, obscuring his view. I jumped on top of him and began to strangle him.
By this point, I’ve probably killed hundreds of men. But there’s nothing like killing a man with your bare hands.
Franco gurgled for a bit, then the bones and muscles in his neck began to break. When his eyes rolled back into his head, I loosened my grip.
“Let him go, James,” Angelika said. “He’s dead.”
I took my hands off his lifeless body and stood up.
“That was fucking brutal. Jesus!” Angelika told me.
I began to strip off the parachute when a man fully decked out in military regalia came out of nowhere and began to clap.
“Well done, well done,” the strange man said.
He walked over to Franco’s body and picked up his cigar. “I am Admiral General Colonel Majors. United States Navy,” he explained.
“Where were you guys when we needed you?” I asked.
“You were never in serious danger. We were monitoring the situation the entire time.”
Angelika and I look at each other.
“But 50 nuclear missiles were launched,” I replied.
“Don’t worry about it,” Admiral Majors said. “What’s important is that I’m here to recruit you into my ultra top secret kill force, the most lethal unit in the world.”
“You’re a killing machine James. You know that. You love the thrill of taking a man’s life. I watched it with my own two eyes. Face it James, you were born to kill.”
I finished taking off the parachute and threw down the Beretta. “I’m a simple LA detective, Admiral,” I replied. “I seek the truth. I’m not very good at it, but people pay me to do it. But I’m not a killer.”
“Suit yourself,” the Admiral said. “But this isn’t the last you’ll see of me.”
Angelika was later arrested due to being wanted by INTERPOL. Something to do with “terrorist activities” in 14 countries. I called Izzy.
“Mission complete,” I told her. “I’ll back in LA in a couple of days.”
“Oh that’s wonderful, James,” she replied. “Did you find that missing arms shipment? It would be really bad if all those weapons fell into the wrong hands.”
The warm breeze blew through the trees while the sun beamed down. Dead and mangled bodies littered the jungle floor.
I rested beneath a tree, waiting for the Angelikas.
A chopper rattled in the distance. The trees rustled as it hovered overhead. Four ropes dropped down to a clearing in front of me.
The four Angelikas lowered down.
“You’re coming with us,” they said.
“Not today sisters!”
I attempted to fire off a clip, but my rifle jammed. I threw the weapon down. If it came down to hand-to-hand combat, I was fucked.
Three of the Angelikas attempted to corner me. One stood back. I threw a grenade, but one caught it and threw it back. The explosion knocked me back a few feet.
The chopper continued to hover overhead.
As I laid there in a daze, I suddenly remembered: Izzy packed my burst action Beretta. The Angelikas were inching closer. I pulled out the sidearm and unleashed the three rounds into the chopper.
I could see the pilot’s brains splatter across the glass. His body leaned forward and the helicopter came careening down into the jungle. As it exploded, fire rained down onto the three Angelikas.
They might’ve been genetically enhanced. But as I’ve learned time and time again, no one is immune to the destructive force of a fireball.
I walked towards the last remaining Angelika. She instantly cowered down.
“Don’t kill me! I’m the original, I’m not genetically enhanced,” she screamed.
“He’s holed up at the abandoned airstrip a few klicks away.”
“You’re taking me to him.”
I held her at gunpoint as we journeyed towards the airstrip. Franco was in the hanger while his private jet rested on the runway.
“Here’s your communist mole,” I told him.
“Excellent work, Mr. James,” he replied. “Now that I can trust you, I’ll reveal to you my secret plan.”
Franco turned around and removed his eye patch. A brilliant flash of gold appeared from where left eye once was. He laid a steel briefcase on the table.
Inside was a ridiculous looking retinal scanner.
“When I run my golden eye through this retinal scan,” he said. “50 scud missiles armed with nuclear warheads will fire from beneath the Gulf of Mexico. Each aimed at a major city in the Western Hemisphere.”
“You’re a madman, Mr. Werner,” I replied. “You’re not even gonna attempt to blackmail world leaders? What kind of villain are you?”
“Once when the world’s major cities have been destroyed,” Franco continued. “They’ll blame the communists, and leaders of the world will have no choice but to use my services to defeat them.”
“Billions of people will die, just so you can make a profit,” I replied.
I’ve seen these cases hundreds of times: madman wants to destroy the world just so he can make a few extra pennies. People will do anything for money these days.
“With that type of destruction,” I interjected. “Nuclear winter could last ages. Are you sure that you completely thought the consequences of your plan, Mr. Werner?”
Franco pondered for a second.
“Shit, I guess I didn’t,” he replied. “Oh well, it’s a risk worth taking. But tonight, we feast!”
Franco left the hanger. Angelika was locked up behind a gate.
“James,” she said. “Franco killed my friends, my family. All I’ve ever wanted was justice. Please don’t let him do this.”
Franco returned with his servants. They were bringing in cartons full of local cuisine out of the jet. He poured a glass of bourbon, then lifted it to make a toast.
“If you stray a foot, I’ll murder you where you stand,” one of the Angelikas told me.
All the mercenaries, 40 of us in total, boarded the black hawks en route to the jungles of Honduras. The three other Angelikas disappeared hours earlier. Only one was left to watch me.
“Why are you after Franco De Werner?” I asked her.
“In addition to killing our comrades, he holds the key to a secret nuclear arsenal somewhere under the Gulf of Mexico. If we can capture him, we’d control enough fire power to destroy the Western Hemisphere,” she replied.
Well fuck me, I thought. Angelika(s) plan was to massacre the mercenaries in the jungle during their communist hunt, forcing Franco down to Honduras.
I was caught between a rock and a hard place: between a diabolical madman and a kill squad of four genetically enhanced clone-ladies
“But why me though?” I asked. “Are you aligned with the mafia? Are they still pissed because I torched the shit out of them in the woods?”
“Just shup and do what you’re told.”
The choppers dropped us off on the beach. We set up camp for the night. All the men gathered around the various fires, cracking open one Keystone Light after another.
It became a beach party.
I stood watch along the tree line. Angelika handed me an MK 556. She pushed me up against a tree and grabbed my dong.
“Remember,” she said. “I am always watching you.”
She then kissed me and disappeared into the jungle. I began to cry.
The men started to get rowdy. I told them to quiet down, that the communists could be watching.
“What are you afraid of, Carlos?” replied Tiger Tanaka, the most ruthless of the bunch. “You’re the most notorious arsonists in Eastern Europe. Quit being a puss.”
Tiger then pulled out a Henri Selmer saxophone and started rockin’ out like he was Clarence fucking Clemons. This noisy instrument was echoing across the bay and into the jungle.
“Damn it Tiger! If you don’t put that loud piece of shit away, I will shoot you myself!” I yelled.
“I ain’t afraid of nothin in this jungle!” he yelled back.
Ironically, a tiger then jumped out of the woods a mauled his face off. The men quickly scattered into the jungle, leaving their weapons behind. I fired a few rounds at the animal before it disappeared.
“There’s tigers in Honduras?!” one of the men yelled. I shrugged.
Angelika must have something to do with this, I thought.
The men attempted to retrieve their weapons. Every time they got close, the tiger would reappear and drag one of them into the woods.
“It’s an ambush,” I said. “We must fall back.”
“Fall back into the jungle?! WITHOUT OUR WEAPONS!” said Thomas Jane “Little” P.P., the explosives expert.
“Calm yourself, Little PP,” I replied. “Fall back and we’ll regroup.”
As the men retreated, trip wires began going off. A fireball would light up the sky and body parts would fall back into the trees.
“We’re gonna die!” screamed Little PP. He ran ahead a few yards in front of me before falling into quicksand.
I extended my rifle to pull him out, but he kept sinking deeper. “I don’t want to drown!” Little PP yelled. “Please kill me, Carlos!”
When I realized that I couldn’t rescue him, I lifted up my rifle and fired one round into Little PPs chest. I watched as his dead body sunk below the surface.
The screams of men continued to echo across the jungle. I heard growling behind me. The tiger was near. I fired a few rounds into the bushes and ran off.
I hopped across a trip wire and hid behind a tree. “Come at me mother fucker,” I said. The tiger jumped out and hit the wire. The explosion was brilliant.
Tiger blood rained from the sky.
I sat down and radioed in.
“To Angelika or whoever’s listening,” I said. “Tiger’s dead. Both tigers are. There can’t be very many of us left. But I’m still standing. If you want me, you’re gonna have to come down here and get me.
But be warned: it’s gonna take more than a tiger and a few land mines to kill me.”
“Be sure to pack my Beretta 93R,” I replied. “Things might get heavy.”
Izzy handed me my aluminum edition suitcase and drove me to Burbank International. I was headed to Belize to pick up the trail of Franco De Werner’s missing arms shipment.
To infiltrate his elite team of mercenaries, Werner provided me with false credentials. My name: Carlos Newhouser…a half-Austrian, half-Mexican, former member of Spetsnaz.
My mission: snuff out the communists.
Kill, if necessary.
At the airport, a rag tag crew of rednecks, Arabs, fishermen, nomads, musicians, accountants, fur trappers, Canadians, dope heads, dope dealers, truckers, Canadians, hockey players, Arsenio Hall, and former special forces were there to greet me. This was Franco’s crack team.
“I’m Carlos,” I said.
“Anyone gonna say anything?” I asked.
A female stepped forward.
“Welcome to Belize, Mr. Newhouser,” she said. “I’m Angelika Anotolukolopolous.”
Angelika was red headed. She spoke with a Scottish accent.
“Let me take your bags,” she said.
“No thanks,” I replied. “I prefer to carry my own.”
We all piled into the bed of a jacked up 95 F-150. Anna tried to brief me on the situation while on our journey to the hotel.
“What?! I can’t hear you through this loud ass Diesel engine!” I said.
“Franco has tasked us with finding the missing arms shipment! He suspects the communists of stealing it!” she replied.
“I know! We’ve already gone over this!”
We arrived at Helena Bay Family Resort. The hardened crew gathered by the poolside bar while children ran and played about.
“I heard you torched a school in Sarajevo because you suspected they were harboring communists,” one of the mercenaries said to me. “You’re one cold blooded son of a bitch.”
“Better dead than red,” I replied. I looked over to the bartender. “Mai Tai please.”
Angelika stepped out in her bikini. The ruffians glanced over and went back to their mojitos. I stripped off my shirt and jumped into the pool.
Angelika looked me over through her Ray Bans.
“I see you have a good taste in music,” she said. She was referring to my Def Leppard tattoo.
I hopped out of the pool and dried off.
“Thanks,” I said. “Got it during their Slang Tour in 96.”
“I’d like to see what else you got,” Angelika replied. She was playing seductively with her straw between her lips.
“On my left ass cheek is the Whitesnake tour from 92,” I replied.
She slipped me the key to her room.
“Come see me tonight, after 10:30. I’ll show you what I got,” and with that Angelika got up and slowly walked away.
She suspected something. We suspected each other. But I had to follow my leads, and Angelika was at the top of my list.
After 10:30, I unlocked the door to her room.
“Angelika?” I asked.
From behind the bathroom door appeared Angelika in a purple corset and black undies.
“Well,” I said. “I don’t see your tattoos.”
“Hello James,” a woman’s voice said from behind.
I turned around and there stood another Angelika in the kitchenette.
“Sorry ladies, I only brought enough protection for one,” I said.
“Please sit down,” the Angelika in the kitchen replied.
“Care for a drink?” she asked.
“Irish whisky,” I replied.
A third Angelika appeared and handed me a glass.
“Can I have the bottle please?” I asked. “What’s going on here?”
“We are genetically enhanced clones from the Ionian Liberation Front,” the first Angelika said. “We know you’re not Carlos Newhouser. You’re a hack detective from some agency in Los Angeles.”
“Genetically enhanced?” I asked.
The second Angelika took my glass and smashed it against her head.
“I see what you mean,” I said.
“We’re after Franco De Werner. Join us, or you won’t be leaving this room alive.”
I thought for a second, then I saw an opportunity: The burrito I ate earlier was roaring back with a vengeance. So I stood up.
“I need to use the bathroom,” I said. “It must be Montezuma’s Revenge.”
“Very well,” one of the Angelika’s said begrudgingly.
I sat on the toilet and started thinking through my options. As I stunk up the room, a forth Angelika handed me a roll from behind the shower curtain.
I took the California 1 up to Malibu. Again, I got pulled over.
“You need to stop fuckin around,” the officer said. “I’ve seen your kind before. You come around here thinking you solve everything. But you can’t. You’re just one man. You can’t change the system.”
“First off,” I replied. “Weren’t you a sheriff in San Luis Obispo last week? And secondly, I’m just helping the FBI on an investigation into Franco De Werner’s missing property. I’m not trying to change any system. And third, how the hell do you know who I am? Hand me my ticket and fuck off.”
The officer glared at me for awhile then wrote up the ticket.
“I better not see your face around here again. And fuck this piece of machinery that you call a vehicle,” he warned.
“I’ll have you know that I get 12 mpg in this piece of machinery,” I replied.
The cop flipped me the bird and walked away.
I pulled up to Werner’s beachfront property. As I walked towards the house, a 50 cal. machine gun knocked up a bunch of sand and blew my bowler off. I dropped to the ground and pulled out my .45.
Seconds later, there was a laugh and a man walked up. His smile was perfect.
“Those commie bastards did me a favor by shooting out my eye. My aim has never been better,” the man said.
I stood up and knocked the sand off.
“Mr. Franco De Werner, I presume?”
“Indeed,” he replied. “You must be the investigator the FBI sent. Welcome to my humble abode. Can I offer a refreshment? A bourbon perhaps?”
“A change of underwear if you’ve got it.”
We went inside to Franco’s Frank Lloyd Wright-inspired home. His servants offered cucumber sandwiches and some 90 proof Elijah Craig.
“I heard you slaughtered an entire mafia up in the mountains,” Franco said.
“How did you hear about that?” I asked.
“For a man in my position, it pays to have eyes everywhere,” he replied. “I could use a man like you.”
“I’m just here to assist the FBI, Mr. Werner. Not for a job interview,” I said.
Franco sat back in his seat and lit up a cigar. Villains love their cigars.
“There was a whole shipment of M4s and Carbon 15s going to counter-revolutionary forces in the jungle. The communists had to of intercepted it,” Franco explained.
“How could they have known?” I asked.
“I must have a rat in my midst,” he explained as he puffed on his cigar. “I need you to sniff him out Mr. James.”
“I’m a simple private investigator Mr. Werner. Not an undercover agent.”
Franco took a drink of his bourbon.
“I know about your troubles. I know about you burning down an apartment building, about the massacre in Big Bear, about your medical bills and unpaid fines to the California Highway Patrol. I can make all your problems go away if you do me this favor: join my team, and find this mole.”
I thought for a second, then poured a glass of Elijah’s.