Death Goes to the Dogs (Chapter 1)

Friday night, 11:30 p.m.

The man sat in the car, nervously drumming his fingers on the steering wheel. Glancing at his watch, he peered into the darkness, wondering what was taking Al so long. They had cased the place for two weeks; they knew who stayed late, who left early, and who stayed all night. All he had to do was slip in, do the job, and slip back out. Five minutes tops.

He wished he hadn’t quit smoking. The waiting was making him antsy. A cigarette would calm his nerves right now. This was an important job, and if they screwed it up, their boss would kill them.

Literally.

Al finally showed up, walking quickly toward the car. He got in and closed the door.

“Well?”

“Well what?” Al said.

“Everything taken care of in there?”

“Absolutely…I think.”

“What do you mean, you think?”

“I couldn’t find my tool, so I used whatever was handy.”

The man groaned. “How could you forget it? I asked you before we left the hotel if you had everything you needed, and you said yes.”

“I thought I did!”

The man slammed his palm of his hand against the steering wheel and cursed. “Did you do it or not?”

“I’m pretty sure I did.”

“You didn’t make sure before you left? God, you’re an idiot!” the man said, pulling a pair of gloves out of his pocket. “Stay put. I’ll be right back.”

Al watched as the man disappeared into the darkness. They had parked two blocks away from their intended target so they wouldn’t have to speed off and draw unwanted attention.

He hadn’t wanted to come on this job in the first place, but his boss had insisted. “You need to get your feet wet,” the boss had told him. “No free rides just because you’re my sister’s kid. And no screw ups this time!” Al couldn’t blame him for being upset about the accident that happened on his first assignment. On the other hand, it really wasn’t his fault. That bike messenger had come out of nowhere, knocking his boss’ wife into traffic, where she got clipped by a taxi. She only had to wear that cast for two months.

Al didn’t want to get into the family business, but every other job he had tried…well, let’s just say they all ended the same way. He always got fired.

The driver’s side door opened and the man got in. He glared at Al as he ripped off his gloves. “You’re a moron, you know that? A complete moron.”

“What’s wrong? I finished the job, didn’t I?”

“Oh yeah, you finished what you started.”

Al breathed a sigh of relief.

“There’s just one problem.”

“What’s that?”

“You killed the wrong person!” the man yelled as he smacked Al upside the head with his gloves.

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