Loyalty

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Liborio Fragale

Vinnie knew the ninjas had taken the compound. Their only hope was the chopper on the roof. Jordan would already be there. But there was one more thing that needed to happen before they could leave. It was clear their boss had just been overpowered by the two ninjas attacking him, but there was no way he would be captured. Joe knew too much.

Emmett was aware of protocol, since he was one of four men who had agreed for it to be instituted. Vinnie watched as Emmett swung around and fired one shot. Joe jerked, and then slumped, blood trickling from a hole between his glassy eyes.

Shyla dropped the dead weight, and scowled at Vinnie. “Sorry, sweetheart,” Vinnie was unrepentant. “He knew too much.”

Before another word could be exchanged, both men bolted from the room. They had maybe thirty seconds to make it to the roof before the ninjas caught them. Jordan’s voice came through the box he clutched. “How close are you?”

The two men burst out onto the specially designed walkway platform at the same time. The walkway ran around the edge of the sloped roof, and was specially designed for surveillance as well as defence of the building.

Jordan had apparently arrived just before them. The three men headed towards the section of the roof walkway that held the chopper. It was big enough for four people.

There were no questions about Joe’s whereabouts; Jordan understood the protocol as much as the other two men did. What the three men didn’t understand was how the ninjas had made it onto the compound undetected. There was no time to debate that situation, since they had now reached the chopper.

Jordan hoisted himself up into the pilot’s seat and began to do the final checks. As Vinnie went to pull himself up next to Jordan, his foot hooked on something that shouldn’t have been there. He glanced down, and cursed. “That bitch!”

Emmett stared incomprehensibly at the skid of the chopper. There was a chain wrapped around the skid, securing it to the platform on which it sat. Vinnie scowled. “Evans.”

As he spoke, a group of three ninjas appeared on the edge of the platform. Emmett levelled his rifle on the group, and began to fire. The ninjas scattered, and Emmett pointed his gun down at the skid. “Get in!” he yelled at Vinnie above the noise of the engine.

Vinnie jerked himself in, and Emmett pulled the trigger. Before he could get the chain to snap, he was knocked off balance by a flying figure. The gun jerked down, fired, and Emmett missed his foot by an inch at most.

He swung the butt of the gun, and hit the figure in the head. She – it was a female shape – staggered under the blow, but stayed upright. Emmett knew she would come at him again, but before he could do anything, a second gun started firing. Vinnie stood in the doorway of the chopper, brandishing an assault rifle. The ninja who had attacked Emmett was in the line of fire.

Emmett ran for the chopper, firing at the skid in an attempt to break the chain. Jordan began to lift the chopper up off the platform, but it jerked to a halt. Emmett knew he was low on bullets, but fired once more. That last bullet hit its mark, and the chain unravelled as though it were elasticised.

Emmett leapt and grabbed the skid as Vinnie fired past his ear. A shout of pain back on the platform had Emmett turning his head. But the chopper lifted up and away from the house before he got a chance to see who had been hit. Jordan gunned the engine as Vinnie jerked Emmett into the space in the back. The house disappeared below them, leaving the last of Liborio Fragale far behind them.

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