Latest Fiction

The Errand

Secure the package. Take a road trip. Make the delivery. Get paid. It should have been easy. I’m alone, standing in the rain. The pistol I’m clenching feels like a brick as I struggle to keep my balance. I feel a sharp pain in my side as the gunshot wound oozes through my bandages. My coat is stained red. Not very professional. They should all be here with me, but it’s always been like this. I feel the sting of frustration sweep through my mind as I limp towards the front door of the house. Maybe it’s because I keep living while everyone else is dying. Maybe I’m just too old for this. Deliver the package. Get paid. Start over. It should have been easy. What a fool I’ve become. 

Mickey opens the front door before I get a chance to knock. He motions for me to come in. I can see the smug look on his face as I limp past him, towards the office where the rest of the assholes are waiting for me. I feel Mickey’s hand grab my shoulder. I turn around. 

“You packin’?”

I pull out my pistol I’d stashed before approaching the front door and hand it to him. He stands there, waiting and staring.

“That’s it,” I mutter to him.

He motions for me to raise my arms and gives me a half-assed frisk. I can smell the bourbon on his breath before he finally leads me into the office. Jack is sitting at a table. Benny and Sean are pouring themselves another drink. They’ve obviously been celebrating my return. 

As I walk in and approach the desk, Jack motions for me to stop. 

“Where’s the rest of you?” 

I hesitate. I straighten my coat. Jack notices the bloodstain. 

“I’m all that’s left.” 

“Shame,” he remarks with a smile. “I didn’t expect the other two dipshits to make it, but Stanley was a good one. Guess you should have planned better.” 

I grit my teeth. “It was your plan. You knew exactly how this would turn out.” 

Jack laughs. His yellow teeth beam at me as he chugs his whiskey on the rocks. 

“Guess I didn’t plan enough then, since you’re still here.” 

“I guess so,” I spit out. I grab my side. The pain is mind-numbing, but I try to maintain my composure. Jack stands up. 

“So, you have the package then?” He asks. 

“In the trunk of the car,” I tell him. Jack shakes his head in surprise…or maybe it’s disgust. 

“You’re in a bad way, Tommy-Boy. I think you already know there’s no dough here for you. But I’m a generous man. Leave the car here. Mickey will keep your gun. The nearest hospital is fifty miles away. The police know your face. You’ll never make it. Go find a rock to crawl under. You’ll bleed out before the night is over. For what it’s worth…you did a good job, Tommy. Too good. Not get out or eat another bullet. The Don will be here in an hour. I’ll sell him the package as planned. Your debt is paid. You get to die in peace.”

Blood trickles down my leg and starts to pool at my feet. Jack takes notice and sighs with frustration. I hear a gun cocking under his desk. I nod my head, turn around and limp out of the office, tossing the car keys over my shoulder. Mickey glares at me as I step outside into the rain. The door slams shut behind me. I make my way to the car, open the door and pop the trunk.

Her muffled cries echo into the night as I shamble towards her. I look down at the Don’s daughter. Her wrists are bleeding from the handcuffs and the outline of her closed lips can be seen through the layers of duct tape covering her mouth. She’s sobbing. I laugh to myself as I imagine the look on her father’s face when Jack tries to sell him some more “firepower.” I slam the trunk shut. I start walking. I walk for what seems like an eternity. Deliver the package. It should have been easy. It wasn’t easy.

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