The chronological order of my stories is now listed in WifeWatchman’s biography.
Feedback and constructive criticism is very much appreciated, and I encourage feedback for ideas.
This story contains graphic scenes, language and actions that might be extremely offensive to some people. These scenes, words and actions are used only for the literary purposes of this story. The author does not condone murder, racial language, violence, rape or violence against women, and any depictions of any of these in this story should not be construed as acceptance of the above.
Part 15 – Crowbars Rule The Night
Midnight, as Thursday, October 22d turned into Friday, October 23d. We had two heavily armed anti-terror SWAT-like teams from the FBI. All were dressed in black, with black armor with “FBI” printed in yellow on the back… except for Cindy and I, whose armor had “POLICE” in silvery-white on the back. Cindy and I were deputized into the SBI for this mission, despite the FBI leading it.
“We have one squad at Energy Dynamics.” Jack Muscone quietly said, in almost a whisper. “And everyone else here, inside and outside the building. Are you sure about this, Don?”
“Want to bet a hundred dollars?” I replied.
“Hell, no.” said Jack. “I still don’t know how you figured out that Energy Dynamics had a directed-energy weapon. They didn’t even tell me that, until my boss assigned me to lead this little welcoming party for the perps. But we’re taking a risk splitting off some of our forces.”
“It’ll be enough, but it’s necessary.” I said. “Everything’s been a diversion, even the threat to Energy Dynamics.” I looked around, mentally re-thinking our preparations. We were not at Energy Dynamics. I had realized that a far greater threat loomed, and that threat was what we had to defeat.
We were at the StatePowerCorp nuclear plant.
“They’re changing the guard now.” said Cindy. We watched as the evening shift guards were replaced by identically dressed night shift personnel. All of the oncoming guards looked young and muscular compared to the older evening shift men. The shift leaders at the front gate were talking, but I could not tell what was being said.
“I don’t see anyone fitting Marcus’s description.” Cindy whispered.
“Neither do I.” I said. “But these night shift guards are not on the up-and-up.” I pulled out my burner phone and texted to all the well-armed agents to watch the guards.
Sure enough, about ten minutes later, the ‘guards’ began stripping their uniforms off, revealing all-black underclothing. They put full head masks on, with only an open space for their eyes. The men at the front gate opened the gate. A pickup truck and a larger cargo truck pulled inside.
Jack Muscone was typing instructions into his burner cellphone on who would take down who. I just watched as the majority of the perps came inside, with a wooden crate that was about 18 inches square.
“How are they going to get into the secure area?” whispered Cindy as we watched.
“Watch.” I said. Indeed, it was a bit gruesome, but the perps came up to the door that led to the secure areas, the actual reactors and the control rooms. One man took a jar of some solution, opened it, and pulled out an eyeball with the optic nerve still attached. As he put the eyeball up to the retinal scan, another man put a fake rubber hand onto the fingerprint reader.
“Chen’s eyeball.” I said. “They took his prints from his body and took out his eye to defeat the systems here, which are the same as at Energy Dynamics.” I whispered. We watched as some of the men moved into a room that preceded the control room, and others moved to the door of the reactor room itself.
The perps had radios, and when the men at the reactor room said they were in position, the men in the control room anteroom slid an access card into the security pad next to the control room’s door, then entered the code numbers.
“We got a problem.” said the guy working the keypad. “The number failed.”
“Try the backup number.” said the next man, who was the group leader. It failed also. The time to close this out was nigh.
I typed in the text word “NOW” and sent it. FBI agents swarmed inside and outside, moving against the ‘guards’ as well as both groups of men inside the facility. Everything was going perfectly…
… and then it all went to shit. Seeing they were betrayed and about to be captured, every perp’s hand went to his mouth, and I could even see the foam on some of their chins.
“They’re all taking cyanide!” I gasped, realizing too late what was happening. And indeed it was too late… we did not take a single one of the criminals alive.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
“Stop berating yourself.” said Jack’s boss, the FBI Deputy Director. Jack, Cindy and I had been in the nuclear power plant’s control room, having evacuated the staff to safety. We had watched everything from the monitor screens inside that had secondary şişli rus escort control of all the security cameras. After the danger was over, we let the staff resume their jobs as we talked in a conference room near the office section of the Plant.
“Dammit,” I said, “I should have thought of that possibility! We had them, sir, but I left one tiny fucking hole in the net, and they swam right out of it… in a manner of speaking, of course.”
“How do you stop them from taking cyanide?” said Jack Muscone.
“TASERs!” I growled. “We sneak up on them and juice the living shit out of them, or we hit them with tranquilizer guns, or something to incapacitate them before they have a chance to pop the cyanide capsules into their mouths!”
“Easy, son.” said the DepDirector. “You’ve still detected and defeated an enormous threat here. We’ve stopped them from exploding the reactor core, which would’ve killed a lot of people, and made a quarter of this State and the one west of us uninhabitable and unable to sustain human life for years… not to mention poisoning the River with radioactive materials and threatening Midtown, it’s water supply, and its people. By the way, Jack, have your people secured that polonium fuse?”
“Yes sir.” said Jack Muscone. “It’s in the secure area where they keep radioactive materials. We’ll return it to State Tech in the morning after the sun has come up.”
The eighteen-inch-square box had held a cylinder made of the element Polonium. If that cylinder had been fired into one of the reactors, it would’ve created a massive nuclear bomb and explosion, as polonium gives off the particles that begins the chain reaction. I need not say we wouldn’t be celebrating a post-case dinner if that had happened. This device was what the perps, disguised as SBI Security, had stolen from State Tech, setting the fire in the adjoining building to cover their audacious actions.
Cindy was listening on her cellphone, then hung up. “Aurelius Marcus is among the dead.” she said. “He was riding shotgun in the cargo truck, and leading the group from there. When our agents attacked, he and the driver also took cyanide. He did have a huge knife with brass-knuckle type rings for a handle, which I’ll bet will perfectly match the wounds to Collins, Chen, and Velasquez.”
“I won’t bet against you on that.” I said. “By the way, Jack, have your agents at Energy Dynamics seen or heard anything?”
“I’ll go check.” said Jack. He left the room.
Cindy and I watched as the FBI wrapped up their operations, bagging the bodies for transportation to the City for autopsies, making their reports and such. “What happened to the real night shift guards?” Cindy asked. “If you alerted them or substituted for them yourselves, the perps would’ve realized the game was up.”
“They’re okay.” I said. “I called the Governor after the Collins killing, and told him I thought there was a threat to a State facility somewhere. He had the State call for full new night crews at all the power plants, and then they did it again last night, which allowed the Bad Boys to slip a team into the plant.”
Cindy was gaping. “You knew enough to do that?!” she said, half angry and half in pure awe. “You knew what was going on after the first killing?”
“Not completely.” I said. “But Collins was also an agent… a former agent. We’ll talk more about that later. And you should by now realize that I knew that BDSM instead of Punk was going to be next because I was seeing even deeper…”
Just then, Jack Muscone entered the room, looking grave. “Sir,” he said to his boss, “we couldn’t get ahold of our guys at Energy Dynamics, so I sent some people over there. Our guys were all found dead, and the energy weapon is gone.”
“Oh my God!” gasped the Director.
“Ohhhhhh, shhhhhhittttt…” I said. I looked at the ceiling then let my head fall between my shoulders, feeling the pain of failure. “Oh my God…”
Cindy began rubbing my shoulders. “You did all you could, Don.” she said as Jack and the Director discussed what had happened.
“He beat me, Cindy.” I said. “The god-damn son of a bitch beat me. The power plant was the diversion; he wanted the weapon. And he got it. He…”
Then it dawned on me. I looked over at Jack and his boss, then pointed with my left hand right at the Deputy Director. “No, he didn’t beat me. This is your doing.”
“What?” gasped Cindy. Jack was trying to look shocked, too. The Deputy Director looked as if he’d been caught with his hand in the cookie jar.
I said “I just realized it: with Chen’s eyeball at the power plant here, you were hoping to find a mole in Energy Dynamics, someone using his… or more likely HER live eyeball to access the weapon there. So you pulled back your people from there to make it look like the perps had clear access, and they’d move in only if someone showed up and tried to take the weapon.”
“Pay up!” said a voice coming into the room, which şişli türbanlı escort I recognized as my own wife’s. Laura strode in, wearing all black, also wearing an armor-vest with “FBI” on the back. The Deputy Director and Jack both handed her $100 bills, grimaces on their faces.
Laura smiled at me as she took the money. “This’ll help.” she said. “Dog food is damned expensive.”
“And worth every penny.” I replied, in defense of Bowser. My wife gave me a second, more sardonic smile.
“Commander,” Cindy said loudly. “I believe I should place under arrest… the top leadership of the FBI and CIA. Their gambling habits are getting out of control, especially when they don’t learn their lesson to never… bet… against… the Iron Crowbar.”
“I’d agree, except I think the CIA Agent is a hot babe.” I said, making Laura smile. “I think I’ll slip the handcuffs on her myself, and at a… better time.” That made Laura blush and Cindy burst out laughing the same way her sister Molly often did.
“Yes, you got us, Commander.” said the Deputy Director. “I was hoping to catch a mole over there. I guess you know who, too.”
“Sure.” I said. “Tomoko Shimono, a.k.a. ‘Asa Akira’, the rogue and now-‘disavowed’ CIA Agent who may have tried to recruit Roy Chen, but more likely kept tabs on him.”
The FBI DepDirector peered at me then said “Jack, I guess nobody showed up over there?”
“No sir.” said Jack. “Nothing at all.”
“Continue enhanced protection there.” said the DepDirector. “The bastards might try again in a few days if we peel back now. So… how do we keep the Media from finding out about this and reporting it?”
“I can handle that.” I said.
Part 16 – Appointments
“This is Bettina Wurtzburg, KXTC Channel Two News!” shouted the redheaded reporterette from in front of the Federal Building at 7:00am sharp, Friday morning, October 23d. “Channel Two News has learned that the murders of David Collins, Roy Chen, and the man found hanging from University Memorial Stadium, known to authorities only as ‘Velasquez’, have been solved!
“Town & County Police Commander Donald Troy issued a statement that the murderer, a professional hit man named Aurelius Marcus, was pursued by authorities into Rivers County, where he committed suicide rather than surrender to Police. Commander Troy stated that the killings were money-related, that Velasquez in particular had debt problems, and the TCPD is closing these cases.”
Bettina continued: “In other news, the fire that badly damaged the Physics Building at State Tech has been determined to be arson. Because the fire was on campus, the SBI, directed by gubernatorial candidate Jack Lewis, has taken over the investigation. And now let’s go to Nick Eastwood for a report on the big Homecoming game tomorrow! Nick!”
“Thank you, Bettina.” said Nick Eastwood. “Homecoming is usually a festival of events on Campus followed by an expected win against a lesser opponent. But this year the Bulldogs are struggling, and the most excitement on Campus was the body found hanging from the Stadium. Channel Two Sports has confirmed that the Athletic Board and Athletic Director met earlier this week to discuss the fate of Coach Russ Bronson, but we do not know if a decision has been made. Meanwhile, the Wildcats have this weekend off, giving them two full weeks to prepare for the Bulldogs on the Wildcats’ home turf…”
“We are going to get skunked.” said Cindy as we watched in my office, avoiding the coffee klatch and possibly being observed after our exciting previous evening. “Maybe not this week against Taco State, but next week… geez.”
“Here’s some info between you, me, and the lamp-post.” I said. “The Athletic Board did decide: Coach Bronson will be fired even if the Bulldogs beat the Wildcats. They’re going after the Wildcats’ defensive coordinator as the next head coach. The good news is that Coach Marshall, who you remember from that PED scandal and Ferrell and Ikea trying to set him up, will be promoted to defensive coordinator at my School.”
“Good for him.” Cindy said. “I do remember him; he’s a good guy. One of the few Wildcats I can say that about.”
“Present company included?” I asked.
“Not at all.” Cindy said emphatically as she got up off the sofa. “You, sir, are the very essence of the Dark Side of the Wildcat Force.” I chuckled as she left the office.
She has no idea how right she is, I thought to myself… no idea…
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Laura was in one of the examining rooms of her clinic next to her office, wearing her white coat and stethoscope, looking every bit the medical doctor and gynecologist she was.
“Okay,” she said. “Well, you’re extremely healthy and pretty fit for a woman in her sixties. Even so, that’s the issue: you’re not an eighteen-year-old girl anymore, Phyllis.”
Laura’s mother-in-law, Phyllis Troy, was sitting on the examining table. She said şişli ucuz escort “Is that why intercourse is becoming so painful for me?”
“I’m afraid so.” Laura said. “It’s a very natural post-menopausal thing. There are some medications I can prescribe, and some good lubricants will help. But I know how you prefer these very well-hung young men you’ve been dating, and their large sizes are not making your situation any better, if you know what I mean.”
“Yes, I do.” Phyllis said with a sigh. “Intercourse is not as enjoyable, either. But I guess I can still give those young men head, can’t I?”
“Absolutely.” said Laura. “Just as I intend to give your son a blowjob every morning until the day one of us departs this earth.”
“I hope that won’t be any time soon.” said Phyllis, who became introspective. “Don has locked horns with an incredibly evil person, who would love nothing more than to kill all of us, and especially my son.”
“I worry about him, too.” Laura said. “But I get this feeling… that Don is a lot farther ahead in this Game than he is letting on. A lot farther…”
Part 17 – Solution
Friday evening, October 23d. The party at The Cabin was attended by myself, Laura, Cindy, Teresa, Martin Nash, Sandra Speer of the FBI as his date, Jack Muscone, Tanya Perlman, Daniel and Melina Allgood, Joanne Cummings, and Chief Griswold. Various babies also were in attendance, and Mrs. Griswold and my mother Phyllis were keeping them (and Bowser, of course) upstairs.
Theo Washington had been invited but could not come, as he and his wife were attending a Homecoming function. Likewise, Myron and Mary had declined to visit, and I understood why…
…because, in a very rare public appearance, the Deputy Director of the FBI was joining us for the first time.
“Wonderful view.” he said to me on the back deck as everyone ate supper. “Really nice job of rebuilding this place, too.”
“Did you ever see the old Cabin?” I asked.
“Yes, yes I did.” said the FBI Deputy Director. “I knew Mr. Bonniker very well, and visited him here a couple of times.” I made a mental note of that and filed it in my ‘mind palace’.
After our supper of catered barbeque chicken, pork and beef, everyone was invited to help themselves to the spirits or wine at the bar set up on a side table in front of the window opening to the kitchen. Soon, Cindy tapped her glass with a spoon.
“Okay guys, it’s time.” my partner and cousin said. “The Iron Crowbar has done it again.”
There was an acclaim. The FBI Deputy Director stood up and said “Everyone, what you’re about to hear needs to be kept in this room. Most of you have clearances of one level or another, so it should be okay, but I’m sure you understand the need to keep quiet about it. Don?”
“Yes sir.” I said. “And please do refrain from discussing this in the future. Having said that, this was definitely an interesting case. I couldn’t tell some of what I know because of the Federal-level security interests. But I’ll try to tell enough here so everyone can see what happened.”
I began: “We first had the killing of David Collins. It appeared that there was no sense to this killing. There were seemingly no connections between him and Velasquez, and the man we now know was Aurelius Marcus.
“However, there was one tiny bit of information that came to me later as important: Collins had majored in biochemistry, a Science; then he majored in ceramics, seeming an Arts field but actually useful for Materials Engineering; then finally personnel management, a Business field. Collins was not wandering around in those disciplines; he was being trained by his benefactors, which was the Federal Government.”
“FBI or CIA?” asked Tanya, figuring it out quickly.
“Don’t answer that.” said a voice. It was not the FBI’s Deputy Director but the CIA’s… my wife, Laura.
“I’ll let you deduce the answer from that right there.” I said, which did not amuse Laura as I continued: “Anyway, I did a quick check on Collins and found that, but realized that my inquiry would be noticed and eyes would begin watching us.” I did not bother to tell them that I knew this because of the ‘Eyes Only’ screen on my computer.
“So what happened is that Collins ended up doing hiring and personnel assignments of scientists for a project that Energy Dynamics has been working on for some years. They worked it with Dynacorp for a while, then took it over fully after we busted up Alicia Foster in the ‘Credit Card Caper’ case.
“Collins was into the Punk Scene, and his employers’ also wanted to use him to seek out any Enemy agents or moles. But he botched it up so badly that he soon became a pariah in the Punk community. In addition, Collins was not the best employee, and was soon cut loose completely from the project as well as his employment with that certain Federal Government agency.”
I went on: “So the question at hand was ‘why’ Collins was killed. I did realize immediately, as did some of you, that the killing was seemingly senseless, maybe just for practice. It was later, upon finding out that he had once been a Government employee, that I realized he was murdered on purpose. The perps knew who he was, and they knew that Collins would recognize what was going on when the next crime occurred.”