Friends With Shadows – Chapter 8

Writer’s Note: I apologize for not posting yesterday! So, to make up for it here’s Chapter 8, early! Today you can enjoy a read with your morning cup o’ joe and bagel. I hope you enjoy this chapter. Read on, my friends!

Chapter 8

Dean begins his own inquiry while he drives the man with large knuckles. He started with the most obvious questions anyone would ask when you find yourself driving a stranger unexpectedly, “Who are you? Where are we going? Why are you in my car?”

Clearly his this man’s intentions were different than Dean’s since he talked over his questions as if he didn’t even notice them, “Why did you become a person upholding the law?”

Adrenaline begins pulsing through Dean’s veins. Palms begin to sweat. Arms suddenly become made of gelatin. He knew the conflict inside from the past to the present, the contradiction he had become. “I wanted to bring justice and peace to those that had none. I wanted order for a system that was chaotic and sometimes fell apart when we needed it most. I wanted to change the system from within – make it better, the way it was intended to be.”

“And what happened instead?” As the man already knew the answer, he asked the question with purpose to wrench the hidden truth from Dean’s soul.
“I became what I fought against. I would confiscate the mail. Sell it back to the criminals through an intermediary – a snitch. It was supposed to be a legitimate operation and when the job was done, I wasn’t.” Feeling freer after confessing his sins to his make-shift priest, e Dean started to become angry at himself and at this man for exposing his lies and hypocrisy.

A steady tone, the man’s queries continued, “What fueled you to keep doing this?”
“I saw how much I could make by reselling the contraband back to the criminals – arresting them once they took possession and reselling it someone else. Greed. And I gave up – I succummbed to the system after being beaten down by it for so many years, after being surrounded by it for so many years.” Anger began taking over his eyes.

“I’m going to give you a choice – continue doing what you’ve been doing fueled by anger and greed or begin delivering for me. If you deliver for me, you won’t escape your past judgement will be in your future but you’ll be free. If you continue on your path, well, you know where that leads – you’ve arrested those that deliver contraband. How much long is the rehab? Ten? Fifteen years? I’ll give you a day to think it over.”

Dean’s vehicle pulled up to a stop sign and the man was gone.
Whatever trance Dean was under had begun to wear off when he became consumed by embarrassment and anger at himself and at whoever this guy is. He hit the accelerator once he realized there were other vehicles behind him, honking; he wasn’t aware how long he had been sitting at the stop sign – a second or minutes.

What Dean knew at this moment was that his snitch must have been talking to someone, who else knew about this? Why was he talking to someone? Money? Revenge? He had to find his snitch and get this problem fixed.

…TO BE CONTINUED…

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Friends With Shadows – Chapter 7 – (CONTINUED!)

Writer’s Note: Who is this guy? What kind of club has a big ol’ opal ring? What is this? Lingering questions, my dear readers, but all will be answered in due time. I trust that I’m keeping you in some suspense as these characters begin to unfold. Enjoy your lunch and your leisurely read! If you need to go back a couple chapters to catch up, I won’t judge. 

Administrative note: Some people haven’t been able to view the pictures I’m posting on Instagram – for some reason, but the problem has been fixed. So, tell your friends, it’s on!

Personal Note: If you want to make things easier or if you know someone that doesn’t have access to any of the above mentioned social media platforms, you can also subscribe right now on this web page! You won’t get a bunch of emails, and just one when I make a new post.

Like, Comment, Subscribe, and Share! Read on, my friends! Chapter 7, continues!

Chapter 7 (continued)

We arrived in Cherie’s dark colored four door vehicle of some make and some model they don’t even manufacture anymore and I have never seen other than in pictures. The car was made of metal, steel. Wish I could be more detailed about the leather interior and the obnoxiously loud engine – but I’ve never been a car guy or history buff. She tells me we’re going to go in through a black door in the back of this building as we pull up to it.

The green glow from the energy efficient bulbs in the street lights gives me an uneasy feeling as I step out of the four-wheeled relic – this may be my last opportunity to run. Who am I kidding? I wouldn’t get far from this woman in high heels, not with my body looking like some kind of demented jigsaw puzzle ready to split open at any moment.

The door closes behind us. Cherie stands off in a corner holding a weathered leather folder. Just enough light to make out the crates and antiquated equipment from the covered windows up high of this warehouse. The green glow of the lights outside penetrating the plastic covering the windows.

A solitary hanging light shines on a spot with a large “X” in the middle. The “X” was painted white and had been used a lot, the paint was mostly faded. She tells me to stand in the light. I oblige without questioning. For reasons unknown, I cannot help but follow her instructions – the sensation is that I am supposed to be here.

In the darkness, an ominous voice burrows through the air to make contact with my aural senses, tingling, sending signals to my brain that the hairs on my arm should be standing at attention, “Good evening. Let’s talk.”

A glowing smile presents itself from the dark figure. The figure holds out his hand, one of the fingers has an opal colored ring that covers the entire bottom segment of his middle finger.

Friends With Shadows – Chapter 7

Writer’s Note: I hope you all enjoyed your Memorial Weekend! I’m back and ready to give you some new mental visualizations via scripted electronic wording. That may have been verbose. Anyway, enjoy the beginning of Chapter 7! If this is your lunch hour, enjoy your tuna sandwich (I’m having a ham sandwich, personally). Don’t forget to comment and share! Read on, my friends!

Chapter 7

Now, let’s start in a room where no fundamental laws of nature apply.

No gravity.

No friction.

No Laws of Thermodynamics.

Throw out the idea that no system can be one-hundred percent efficient.

What have you created? A world where size doesn’t matter. A place where the tiniest guy can take the biggest punch and nothing happens.

But, once you start introducing these laws of nature back into the room then things start to change. Reactions happen. And when you know what the reaction is going to be when a small guy takes a big punch then you can also start predicting human behavior. You see this when your friend complains about getting a seat belt ticket after you have told them numerous times to wear a restraint. The reactions to forces becomes like predicting the end to a movie or a book – you know the basic elements and all that changes are the words. Predictable.

Though, not always. Sometimes, things don’t go as planned. People will often write off the scenarios that don’t go as predicted as erroneous solutions – to be discarded. Too soon are these misfit results overlooked; they are that undefinable human quality that cause revolutions and cause the statistics to not mean anything in the end.

The world we all live in, where, to maintain order in an otherwise chaotic existence, energy and effort, must be exerted to keep a peaceful existence – entropy. As long as we pour ourselves into our own life, only then can we meaningfully impact the lives of others and have the ability to do so, willingly. When other forces are exerted upon our own life, using brute force, then we resist the change.

So, what is it about these extraneous solutions in life that give us out humanity? Why do we fight them so much, and yet, they are what gives us our life, our soul, our perseverance?

We cannot discard these extraneous solutions, these people.

His words, in my head. These were the thoughts I had before he had even uttered a syllable to me. I could not be certain, if you ask me, that these mind blurbs were my own.

….to be continued….

Friends With Shadows – Chapter 6 (Continued)

Writer’s Note: Are you getting as excited about this chapter as I am? Trust me, it’s getting better as we go forward. I’m still making some adjustments to the dialog and the characters so it’s taking a little longer than expected to get ahead in some of the plot development, but it’s still moving along! Stay tuned, because I’m also working on another challenge! Not sure when it will be ready for being challenged but I’m working on it! Chapter 7 will be ready on Monday! In the meantime, enjoy your Saturday read and brace yourself for the continuation of Chapter 6! Read on, my friends!

Chapter 6 (continued)

Dean caught Edgar slipping out of his apartment from the corner of his eye. He briefly twitched, a reflex to start going after the bad guy.

The man at the window moved his head in an obvious attempt to catch Dean’s attention. “I’d let that one go. There will be others. But right now, I could use your assistance,” the man had a persuasive argument.

Dean sees Edgar one last time on the street, staring at the Law vehicle, staring at Dean, staring at the man, walking briskly past and then disappears into an alley. He did nothing to stop him. Somehow entranced, this man seemed to have more important things to say, though he has hardly said a word that would convince any cop to not follow procedure. And yet, here he was….

“Now, where were we, Dean?” the man’s gaze became more intense. The whites of his eyes seemed to glow, contradicting the fading evening light.

Dean tried to tune into his own senses and he wasn’t sure if his thoughts and actions were frozen out of fear or out of intrigue. But, before he realized it he had unlocked the passenger door and was letting the tall dark figure into the car. The man stared straight ahead, smiling, “Drive.”

Friends With Shadows – Chapter 6 – Who’s this guy?

Writer’s Note: Sorry for not posting yesterday! I’ve been up for nearly 24 hours making a trip to San Diego to visit family and sample the local cuisine. Fear not! The next chapter is up and ready! Enjoy your Friday! And enjoy the plot development in Chapter 6! Read on, my friends.

Chapter 6

Dean is sitting in the undercover Law vehicle waiting. Waiting. Tapping his fingers on the steering wheel, keeping the beat to a song that isn’t playing on the radio or in his head – just tapping. He knows he told him to be here at this time. Two hours. Typical snitch – everyone’s schedule revolves around him. He looks up at the apartments to see two small eyes peering out of the dirt matted blinds. Dean starts to get nervous – his snitch better show up soon to make sure this deal goes down. If it doesn’t go right, he’s going to have to explore the possibility of pursuing the largest lie of his career.

What his supervisors don’t know is the depth to which Dean has buried himself on this case. He’s trying to stop “mail” from being delivered, find the people in charge of these rings and put them away for a long while. Rinse and repeat. What his supervisors don’t know –

Two large knuckles appear on the window, tapping gently on the first rap, then with more authority on the second rap.

The knuckles obviously startled Dean, a man in deep thought, a man watching for his suspect. Dean looks straight ahead and then slowly turns his head with his eyes leading toward the direction of the knocks. He notices a thick opal band covering an entire phalange on a middle finger. His hand gently removing the safety from his sidearm tucked between the center console and his seat.

The face Dean sees is dark and smiling – not disarming, at all, more ominous. The knuckles make a motion to roll down his window. Dean cracks the window two inches; just enough to have a conversation. An oddly soothing and deep voice vibrates through the window, “Hi, I’m sorry to have bothered you. But, I’m hoping you can give me directions? I seem to be lost on my journey.”

Friends With Shadows – Chapter 5 (moving along)

Writer’s Note: The continuation of Chapter 5 is a special chapter since it introduces a new character, “Cherie”, which is the name of the winner of the sharing/tagging challenge from last week. Is she good? Is she bad? Let’s find out! Congratulations Cherie! Enjoy your name immortalized as a character in this book!

I’ll be doing more challenges in the future, so don’t worry if you didn’t believe me that I’d put someone’s name in the book. There will be more chances in the future! Now, let’s see what happens! Find yourself a nice cup of coffee, find a corner in your break room, snuggle up on your couch (preferably if it’s raining), and get ready for the last part of Chapter 5!

Chapter 5 (continued)

A bead of sweat runs down his face as he turns around from the front seat. He fakes a smile and asks how I’m feeling. I’m unable to deliver a snarky remark when he interrupts me and asks to who I’ve been talking.
I assure him that I’ve talked to no one besides the doctor, the attorney, and him – I then ask him what topic he’s referring. He licks his dry lips and swallows.
His fuse has been lit by someone and has caused his patience to be lacking, “THE MAIL, SNITCH!”

I can see him trying to calm his breathing and then slow his words using his most friendly and sincere voice in his repertoire of interrogation techniques, “Sorry. I’m sorry. I need to know who you’ve been talking to about the mail you’ve been delivering.”

He can see an amount of fear and confusion in my eyes and moves his hand up and down in a calm-down motion. I tell him that I tell no one about the transactions out of fear of being in rehab for the next decade or two.

“What’s that?” Dean points with his finger to his chest with his chin up, referring to the stitches that appear just over the top of the shirt I’m wearing. “Is that from the accident you had? Anyway, I need you to make sure you aren’t talking to anyone. An-y-one. If I find out you’re talking, you’re going to be begging for rehab.”

I nodded affirmation. One of the guys in the car opens the door to the car and lets me out. I stand there, stunned – the rain begins to fall. Great, now I’m in a cheesy independent foreign film with subtitles.

From the wet darkness of the alley a soft voice follows a path to my ears. Disarming. I look over, all I can see is the soft silhouette of a tall woman. I focus in on what she’s saying as she holds out her hand with an opal colored ring that covered the entire bottom segment of her middle finger, “Hi, it’s time for us to talk and for you to meet someone. I’m Cherie.”

With no hesitation, rehearsed, she reaches for the inside of her fitted blazer quickly and pulls out a shadowed object.

Great, I’m going to die in a cheesy French college student independent film alley.