Monday, August 6, 2018

Stub 2.0, Vengeance

“Tony!” Marie Spirochete screeched.  “Tony!  Get your ass in here!”

Marie’s disposition had not improved after the emergency colostomy precipitated by her bout with the plague.  Neither had it improved when she revived from her coma to find out that her son and last surviving direct decendent, the apple of her eye, had died in a helicopter crash the night of her crisis. 

Frank Spirochete had been shot down by surface-to-air missiles as the two-chopper formation he was being transported in was descending in preparation for a landing. Frank was enroute to visit his mother on what he believed to be her dying bed.

Marie Spirochete, the matriarch of the Spirochete empire survived.  Frank did not.

Tony Spada, formerly Spadafore, was Marie’s nephew by marriage and she found him a poor substitute for “real” family.  Tony knew that his performance would never satisfy Marie because that was not the source of her pain.  Only death would bring her solace.

“Tony.  Quite your damned stalling and get your ass in here.” Marie shrieked.

Tony walked into the sun-room.  Marie was in a recliner and was propped up with quilts and blankets.  The temperature was over 80 Fahrenheit but nobody would dare touch the thermostat or suggest that it be lowered.  Marie had that kind of effect on people.

“Who killed my Frankie?” she asked as soon as she caught sight of him.

“Bona-Brown.” Tony answered.

“Rat-bastard!” Marie spit out.  “I knew it.  I knew it!” she said.  “I told you from the beginning that is who did it.  Damned if I know why it took you so long to confirm that.”

Marie, in her grief blamed at least twenty parties, in turn, of assassinating her Frankie.  She had assigned Tony the task of figuring out who was responsible.  Tony’s task was made more difficult by the fact that Marie was richer than God.  There are some jobs where more money muddies things up.  He hired three, top-notch operatives to rotate through the cocktail circuit and keep their ears open.  Intelligence gathering is a case of where you have to go slow to go faster.

Marie squinted at Tony.  He was a handsome man on the best side of forty, tall and wide-shouldered.  He had a mustache the color and density of a push broom and hazel colored eyes.  He returned her gaze without flinching.

“So you had him killed?” she asked, menacingly.

“No ma’am.  I would not do that without consulting you first.” he said.

Not mollified, she demanded, “Well, then who off-ed him?”  There was zero doubt in Marie’s mind that Bona-Brown’s death was not due to natural causes.  In her time she had made too many “arrangements” to believe that a timely demise was due to random chance.

“The whispering on the cocktail circuit in Sacramento is that his death was consistent with Botulism poisoning.  The only organization with access to large amounts of Botox is Azrael Pharmaceutical.”  Azrael Pharmaceutical was the worlds largest producer of Botox and a host of other exotic, biologically derived drugs.  Angelo Azrael was also a member of the Leland Club.

“How sure are you that BB killed Frankie?” Marie asked.  Her mind tended to bounce around since the colostomy.  Her doctors had warned the family.  Sometimes small blood clots form and the patient undergoes a series of micro-strokes.  Those strokes can cause changes of personality and diminish cognitive ability.  If anything, they had made Marie meaner and more unpredictable.

“We can never be 100% sure.  But I am 99.9% sure.” Tony said.

Ticking off the pieces of evidence using his fingers as counters, “Nobody knew Mr Spirochete was coming here except Bona-Brown and those closest to him.  There is barely enough time for a hit team to move from Gilroy to the ambush site so it had to be somebody close to Bona-Brown. The missiles used were a common weapon in the Cali inventory. The assassins knew enough to eliminate all of the serial numbers, including the ones buried in the software."

"My experts think the assassins put on Emergency Response Team gear and blended in the the responders because the emergency responders cordoned off the area and “sniffed” the indigent campers for propellant residue and got no hits.  The assassins exfiltrated with the ERTs when they left.”

“The other thing is that Bona-Brown had been arguing with Mr Spirochete.  Mr Spirochete as trying to rein in Bona-Brown’s spending and Bona-Brown lost his temper and was yelling at Frankie, I mean, Mr Spirochete.” Tony concluded.

“How about the rebels?  Could it have been them?” Marie asked.

Tony allowed himself to snort.  “Not hardly.  They don’t have the capability.  Really, they are just a bunch of bumbling fools.  They had ten days to see our invasion coming and still couldn’t manage to pull one roadblock across I-5. I guarantee that it was not the rebels.”

“OK, Tony.  You done good.  Good enough to get another assignment.” Marie said.

Tony breathed a secret sigh of relief.  He had no confidence that Marie was going to accept his conclusion that Frankie had been assassinated by Bona-Brown.  He was not sure himself but he knew better than to equivocate in front of Marie.

“Your new assignment is to destroy Angelo Azrael.” Marie told him.  “Cost is not a factor.  Spend a billion US dollars if that is what it takes.”

Tony shook his head.  “It should not take anywhere near that to take out a hit, even for a hardened target like Azrael.”

“You weren’t listening.  I said destroy him.  Destroy his dreams.  Destroy is legacy.  Destroy his family.  Grind his name into the shit on the street….then kill him.” Marie said.  "Bona-Brown was mine to kill.  Axrael stole my vengeance and must pay."

Next Installment of Stub

1 comment:

Readers who are willing to comment make this a better blog. Civil dialog is a valuable thing.