Burning Love XX
By Nomarr Knight
I found the vacant apartment which overlooked Angelino’s Bistro. The plump mobster sat alone at a table outside the restaurant. Two goons, both over six feet tall, stood behind him, eyeing every passerby as if each person were a potential assassin. I thought it odd they never glanced up in my direction.
I recognized the sniper’s rifle Sam left for me to use for the execution. A Cheytac bolt action rifle sat on the bed. I loaded five .408 caliber rounds. Sam had trained me with one like it because he felt I could handle its kick. Plus he favored the silencer on the muzzle. He called it a kickass weapon for long range kills. I recalled the gleam in his eyes when he cradled the thing. After a month of intense practice, the rifle felt good in my hands. He had called me a natural.
I took position by the south window and was pleased to see my target still in place. He sipped a glass of wine and snacked on a piece of bread. I peered through the Chetac’s scope and grinned for my target was well within the 2000 meter range, promising to make this hit a piece of cake. I put an earpiece on and at once Sam’s voice disappointed me.
“Glad you made it, Candy. This is a quick in and out. Pump two rounds in the bad man’s chest. By the way, the key to the locker you have is no longer needed for there’s been a change of plans.”
“What? What now?”
“Lucas just placed the bag under the driver’s seat of your car. Your plane ticket and bearer bonds are all you need to start a new life.”
I hadn’t noticed my body temperature rise until a droplet of sweat landed on my wrist. There was something odd about all this. Sam had proven relentless in his efforts. I couldn’t believe he would let me just disappear.
“Concentrate on the hit!”
I wasn’t sure if he scolded me in anger or annoyance. Emotion usually eluded the great assassin.
“I’m not going to go through with this unless you tell me where he is.”
“The deal is your life for this final kill. Lucas belongs to me.”
“He’s my boyfriend!”
“He’s my associate. He never cared about you, Candy.”
“You lying bastard!”
“The window of opportunity will soon close. Concentrate on the hit and you’ll be rid of me forever. Isn’t that what you want?”
His cold voice sent shivers down my spine. I tried to shake off tears. Sam had attempted to teach me to leave my emotions out of my work. Assassins had no business being sentimental. Tears clouded my vision, hindering my ability to shoot the weapon.
I forced myself to look for a positive and I was thankful how much thought had gone into this location. Sam had canvassed the area well. It would be difficult for me to hit anything from this angle other than my target.
When my eyes cleared I refocused on my target and gasped.
“What’s wrong, Candy?”
A chubby boy about five-years-old and a little brunette girl around ten hugged my target, Angelino Trasverte.
“I can’t do this! He has kids!”
“Damn it, Candy! How many times do I have to tell you? Emotions are the cleanser’s enemy. You are not evil. What we do is essential for the good of mankind. We are providing a service to society, one that has been around for ages.”
“I am not going to kill a man in front of his children!”
My hands shook. I looked away from the scope and up to the heavens. In my mind I asked, “Please God, if you exist, get me out of this without killing anyone.”
Sam said, “I knew you would chicken out. Take a look at the little girl’s happy face, Candy.”
“No, I’m leaving.”
“Look at the girl and tell me what you see!”
Sam’s irritated tone chilled me. I had no choice but to look through the Chetac’s scope. When I adjusted the sight I saw how overjoyed the girl was.
“Do you see it, Candy?”
“So she’s happy. What does that have to do with me?”
“Look further down.”
A red dot fixated on her chest. The monster had his own sniper’s rifle sights fixed on the girl while Angelino had his attention turned to his son.
“Sam, you wouldn’t dare!”
“You know me better than that Candy. You keep your end of the bargain and execute your mark, and I won’t have to kill the girl.”
“I hate you!” I tightened my grip on the instrument of death. “How can killing an innocent girl prove to me that you’re on the side of good? A good man would never take a child’s life.”
“Are you sure?”
A silent pause shook me to the core. Again my body trembled.
He whispered, “Every war has collateral damage.”
So many thoughts rained in my mind. I pictured making love to Lucas. I wondered what kind of life Angelino’s kids would have without a father. The fact he was a mobster meant that he probably wouldn’t live long enough to raise his kids anyway.
“Sam, do you have any idea what shooting Angelino in front of his kids would do to their psyche?”
“We’re not in the business of mental health. We exist to make the world a better place. Shoot him now!”
I swallowed hard and tried to dry my hands against my jeans. Then I pulled latex gloves on to reduce the chance of slippage. The way I saw it, though I had loaded five rounds, the first one was the money shot.
“Damn it Candy! Angelino’s getting up. You may lose your only window of opportunity!”
I aimed for his chest. He hugged the boy and patted the girl on her head. I held my breath and squeezed the trigger for my scope revealed a heart shot would be almost impossible. The bullet entered through his left clavicle bone. I fired another shot and watched as blood spurted out of his neck.
Sam yelled, “Take the headshot!”
Angelino had spun and was falling fast when my third shot entered the back of his skull. Screams and pandemonium ruled the next frantic moments. One of Angelino’s bodyguards pulled the children away from my line of sight. The other had a nine millimeter drawn and crouched over his boss.
“Get out Candy!”
I wanted to find Sam since I knew he was nearby. I wanted to pack up the weapon, take it with me and hunt Sam down. Having been careful not to leave my DNA behind, I left the room and the rifle behind, trying hard not to look rattled. I was thankful I wore a plain blue cap, which at first glance made me appear like a boy. A green army jacket hung loose on me. This was my idea of inconspicuous wardrobe.
When I got to my car I had hoped to find Lucas sitting inside, but instead I found a black duffle bag with one million dollars in bearer bonds and a ticket to Paris. There was a blue, scented envelope. I instantly recognized the cologne that Lucas wore. I opened it and found this letter.
My dearest Candy,
I regret that we must not continue our affair for we are linked to a man who will stop at nothing to win his battles. I’m sure he’s said that I played you, but the fact of the matter is that I loved you since the first moment I laid eyes on you. Take this opportunity to make the right choice now. Choose life and go far away from this mad existence. In time you’ll fall in love and perhaps forget I ever existed. Whatever happens, never disregard your training and please try and find happiness for while it may not exist for me, I feel you are destined to find and keep love by your side.
I love you my sweet, always.
Cold. My body grew numb. I didn’t know what to feel. I thought I’d turn to mush if I had ever lost my love. At first, anger crept in for I failed to exact vengeance on my uncle who had molested me when I was young. Soon anger was replaced by confusion. I felt like a lost soul incapable of holding on to thought. Just when I felt hope drained away, my focus returned with a vengeance. I caught the next plane to Paris. For much of the flight my senses heightened, prompting me to expect an unknown assassin to eliminate the loose end that I was. Eventually, I recognized that Sam had finally kept his word. I raced to the bathroom to get away from people.
Once inside the only private room on the plane, I balled, mourning the loss. At first I cried because I had lost Lucas, but then I cried tears of joy because I had finally gotten away from the madman that changed my life. Sam may still be alive, but at least I had an opportunity to change my fortune and find a love that could be stronger than what I had with Lucas. I prayed for a chance at living a life so passionate that it could only be described as burning love.
I had my life back. Though the road ahead was filled with regrets and lost opportunities, at least I survived. Who knows, maybe I’ll be strong enough to fight another day.
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Thank you to all Knight Chills readers for your wonderful words of encouragement and for keeping Candy and the cast of characters company through many nerve racking nights. Look for this novella in e-book, titled, Burning Love by June 2011. Hopefully, the novel will be ready for the spring of 2012. Lots more action coming Candy's way and several surprises are in store for our charming assassin.
© Copyright Nomar Knight 2011. All rights reserved.
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