Thursday, April 18, 2013

Bad Day in Queen's Landing - Chapter 9 and Epilogue

Chapter 9
            Cals legs were hurting from squatting behind his hiding place.  It was close to midnight, and most of the activity had died down at Hernandezs house.  There were only 6 goons Cal had counted.  The three had decided to make sure they got Hernandez.  Cal told them the drug trade had to end, regardless if he got back the file on himself or not.
Do you know what the signal is supposed to be? Terrance asked Cal.  Cal shook his head.  Cal, its dark out here, I cant see you if youre nodding or shaking your head!
I dont have a clue, Cal admitted.  I did see Carol sneak over there a few minutes ago, and went back to her hiding spot.
Where? Terrance asked.  Cal got his hand as close to Terrances face as he could and pointed where he had seen her.  Oh, thats good.
Whats good? Cal asked.  It was at that time he saw a trail of fire head toward the direction Cal had pointed at seconds ago.  He peered into the night and noticed there were a couple of drums there.  They appeared to have some symbols on them.  Is that gasoline?
That was the last thing Cal heard for a while, except for the loud explosion that took out the drums, vehicles, and part of the house.
A few seconds later a few goons stormed out of the house with weapons.  Cal watched one of them dropped and realized from the angle of the bullet entry he had seen, it hadnt come from him or Terrance.  His sister was picking off the men!  The second fell, and Cal had an internal count going.  There were 6 goons and Hernandez by his count, so now they were down to 5 men total.  Gunshots filled the night air, and Terrance and Cal got separated during the fire fight.  After a few minutes, Cal was pretty sure they had taken down 4 of the 6 goons.  Cal made his way into the house, as stealthily as he could.  He could see movement in the kitchen.  There were two men firing out the kitchen window at Terrances general direction.  Cal came around the corner quietly, and realized that Hernandez was one of the men.  He aimed very carefully and prepared to squeeze the trigger when something slammed into his chest knocking him down and the gun from his hand.  He looked up, breath knocked out of his body, at the other goon he hadnt accounted for.
The bullet had hit Cal in his Kevlar vest, but Cal was pretty sure he had broken a rib.  Hernandez walked over and made a gesture for the goon to head into the kitchen.  Cal heard a sharp crack and the sound of someone hitting the floor, Hernandez didnt seem to notice, he was staring at Cal.
You think you can come in here and take me out, after everything I did for you? Hernandez asked threatingly.  John heard another sharp crack.  He heard a moan from inside the kitchen.  Hernandez aimed his gun at Cals forehead.
I should have done this the same night I took down the sheriff, Hernandez said.  Cal closed his eyes and began to pray.  He heard a gun go off, but didnt feel anything.  He waited just a second, and heard something fall.
But you didnt and I just took you out! Terrance exclaimed.  Cal opened his eyes and saw Hernandez lying on the ground, looking towards him with a bullet hole in his head.  Cal gulped.  Terrance came over and helped Cal up.  Cal held onto a table, to keep himself upright.  Terrance disappeared into the house.  Carol appeared in the doorway.
You okay? Carol asked.  Cal nodded.  He didnt trust himself to speak.  He was afraid his voice would crack from the terror.  He felt something shoved in his hands.  Terrance handed him the folder that Chris had complied on him.  Cal took a deep breath and handed it back to Terrance.
You two decide what to do with it, Cal said.
You realize this could ruin you? Terrance asked.   
T, I have messed up bad, and its time I pay, Cal responded.  Terrance looked at Carol.  She nodded.  Terrance reached into his pocket, pulled out a lighter and tossed the file into an empty sink.  He lit the folder and stood there and watched it burn.
You owe both of us, Carol said as she watched it burn.  Cal nodded.  You can start by being a good sheriff, the kind of sheriff this county needs.  Cal nodded again.  Carol sighed and waved him towards her.  Come on, lets get those ribs looked at.

Over the next few days life went back to normal for Cal.  He deputized Terrance and told him that he had to quit smoking marijuana.  He was pretty sure Terrance was stoned when he told him.  A new girl, Samantha, moved to Queens Landing and seemed to flirt with Cal any chance she got.  Carol continued to keep an eye on Cal to make sure he was on the straight and narrow. 
It was a few weeks later that Cal woke up  in the middle of the night and felt someone in the room.  He started to reach for his weapon on the night stand when he heard a gun being cocked.
Its not there, a voice said.  I know who you are and what you did, and Im not happy about it.  Hernandez was an idiot, but hes my idiot.  You had no right to kill him.  Im going to kill you Mr. Shelby . . . just not tonight.  With that, Cal felt, more than saw, the intruder leave the room.  Cal didnt sleep the rest of the night. 
The next morning, at the sheriffs office, Cal told Terrance what happened.
What are you going to do? Terrance asked.
Im going to do what I promised you two Id do, Cal answered.  Were going to start by cleaning up whats left of the Hernandez mess.  Terrance nodded, and went over to the weapons locker.  What are you doing?
Im not going out there to fight them barehanded, Terrance said, tossing Cal a shotgun.
T, this is my mess, and I wouldnt dare ask you to help, Cal replied.
Thats good, Terrance said, checking his weapon.  He looked up and Cal stood there still in shock.  If you try and hug me or something, I will shoot you.
Cal nodded, and the two headed out the door.
Thanks, T, Cal said as they got in the vehicle.
Dont mention it, Terrance replied.  I mean it, dont mention it again.
The two took off in the car to begin the long road of cleaning up the mess Cal had made.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Bad Day in Queen's Landing - Chapter 8

Chapter 8
            As they came up the stairs, Cal put his hand down to his service weapon.  He heard rustling upstairs, and was afraid Hernandez had sent one of his boys to take Cal out.  When he came out of the stairwell, there stood Carol.
            Did you play basketball this week? Carol was asking Terrance. It smells like it.
            I have a prescription, Terrance replied.  Carol rolled her eyes and looked at her brother and then back at Terrance and the ordnance they were carrying.
            Going hunting boys? Carol asked.
            For Hernandezs men, Terrance answered.  Carol looked surprised.  She turned toward Cal for verification, and Cal nodded.  Carol nodded slowly, shrugged and headed down the stairwell without a word.
            Did she know what was down there? Cal asked.  Terrance nodded.  How does she know whats going on down there and I didnt?
            Youre the fuzz, Terrance answered simply.
            Im your friend and knew you were smoking pot and didnt say anything! Cal exclaimed.  Terrance turned around and looked Cal straight in the eye.
            Youre a dirty cop, Terrance explained.  I didnt know if youd try to blackmail me, turn me in, or just let it ride.  Cals mouth was open in shock.  It remained open as he saw Carol bring up two bullet-proof vest and a rifle with a scope on it.  Terrance started to stay something but Carol cut him off.
            You cant lay cover fire and help him take the place, Carol said.  Terrance thought, nodded, and turned toward Cal.
            How long will it take you to deputize her? Terrance asked.  Cal shook his head.
            Nope, no way! he exclaimed.  Carol gave Cal the dont be an idiot look.
            You know Dad taught me how to shoot, Carol said.
            If you get shot, or worse, Dad will kill me, Cal replied.
            Im simply laying down cover fire, Carol said.  Cal couldnt believe the mess he had gotten himself in.  Besides, she continued.  Someones got to help you two.  You cant shoot and hes half-baked.  Terrance looked up from what he was doing, started to argue, realized Carol was right, shrugged and continued to load his weapon.
            What are you even doing here? Cal asked, trying to get some control of this situation.  Carol looked at Cal, very angrily.
            I came to tell you that Becky that you went to high school with, shes dead.  Heroin.  Cal didnt say anything, he just looked down at the floor.  When he looked up, Terrance and Carol was staring at him, not sure whether to be mad at Cal or not.
            Come on, he said quietly.  Lets go to my office so I can figure out how to deputize you two.  Cal turned and left the house without another word.
            Try not to let him get killed, Carol said quietly to Terrance.
            I know, hes your brother, Terrance responded.  Carol shook her head.
            Thats not why, Carol replied, grabbing the rifle and heading out of the house.  Im still not sure I dont want to kill him.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Bad Day in Queen's Landing - Chapter 7

Chapter 7
Terrance led Cal downstairs to what Cal could only call an armory.  There were guns and ammo everywhere.  Shelves, display cases, and hooks on the walls all held guns of every kind.  There were crates holding bullets everywhere. 
Expecting a zombie attack? Cal asked.  Terrance looked at Cal like he was stupid. 
Lets just say Im ready in case I ever need to be for anything, Terrance answered.
T, you have more ordnance here than we do, Cal said, still surveying the room.
Im better trained than you too, Terrance replied.  Cal slowly turned to Terrance.
Why are you showing me this? Cal asked.
I said I owe you, Terrance replied.
So youre going to loan me ammunition and weapons to take down Hernandez? Cal asked, hoping that was the answer, but fearing it wasnt.
Yeah, Terrance answered, picking up an automatic rifle and beginning to load a clip into it.
Is that all? Cal asked.  Terrance gave Cal an annoyed look.
What do you want from me? Terrance asked.  Do you want me to hold hands with you and sing Kumbaya?  Or, would you rather I strap up and we go run Hernandez and his boys out of town?  Terrance gave a challenging glare at Cal, waiting for his answer.  Cal ran his hand through his hair and looked around the room.  He looked back at Terrance.
I cant, Cal responded.  Terrance looked at Cal flatly.  Youre not a deputy.  Terrance barked a laugh, but Cals face never changed.
Youre serious?! Terrance more said than asked.  Cal slowly nodded.
If we do this, then people will get killed, and I cant protect you, Cal answered.  If you were deputized, then we might, and I mean, MIGHT, get away with it.  Terrance stuck his tongue into his bottom lip, thinking.  He slowly nodded. 
            Do it, Terrance said.
            Do what? Cal asked, not believing what he was hearing.
            Deputize me, Terrance answered. 
            You cannot be serious, Cal said, not believing what he was hearing.  Terrance was grabbing more guns from around the room.
            You heard me, deputize me, Terrance answered.  Im more than qualified.  In fact, Im probably overqualified.  Cal had never seen his friend like this since high school.  Terrance looked so alive.
            What happened to you over there? Cal asked quietly.  Terrance stopped in mid-movement with his back to Cal.  Terrances face tightened.  He never looked at Cal.
            Some things are better not known, Terrance answered.  Lets just say the same guy didnt come back.
            Are you sure about his T? Cal asked.  Terrance didnt answer for a second.  You dont have to do this T, Cal said softly, knowing he would never survive this without his friend.  It didnt matter to Cal, he couldnt ask his friend to do this.  Terrance remained facing away from Cal.
            Some things are worth fighting for, Terrance answered.  You done taking dirty money?
            Yes, Cal answered quietly.  Terrance nodded and turned to Cal.
            Then lets strap up, get me deputized, and put these punks out of business, Terrance said with a gleam in his eye that Cal had never seen before.  I cant stand drug runners.
You smoke marijuana, Cal replied.  Terrance looked at him like he was crazy, shook his head and started up the stairs.
Its for a medical condition, Terrance replied as headed upstairs leaving Cal by himself.
I swear I am never going to understand that man, Cal said to himself.