“You can’t kill me,” He growls, spitting out another tooth and a rather large amount of blood, “you’re an agent, not an assassin.” He smirks up at me like he just won the argument with that statement.
“I’m an agent with a license to kill, my darling... you ever seen James Bond?” His eyes widen comically as I lean forward to rest my elbows on my knees. We’ve been sat here for about an hour, this guy is my only lead to the head honcho of the French underworld, I can’t let him figure that out because he does have the upper hand here despite being tied to a chair in his own lounge.
“Look, I can’t tell you much... they’ll kill me, torture me.” His skin is pale and the bags under his eyes are dark only indicating that he hasn’t slept in awhile. This guy isn’t just on the run from local police but British intelligence - e.g. me - as well, along with his old employers.
“Just tell me what you know, mate, and I’ll let you carry on with your gambling and your thieving. You really aren’t important to me.”
“All I know is a name, Monsieur Pontiac.”
“Like the car? These fucking names, I swear.” I roll my eyes and pull out my government issued hand-gun, watching in amusement as he tries to shuffle away from me.
“I told you everything I know, I promise!” He starts crying, embarrassingly and I roll my eyes.
“A deal is a deal, Mr Skinner, try and make it to the end of the week, would ya? I’ve got a bet on you.” I tuck my gun away before leaving the small London townhouse and out onto the dark streets.
I swear criminals are getting stupider these days, at least the common criminals, the Mob and Mafia bosses are getting smarter and richer especially the head of the French underworld. Now, they’ve never been much of a problem before but then a threat to the safety of the Monarchy was discovered and thwarted, now I’ve been detailed to finding and dealing with the head of the whole thing.
I duck under the trees as I walk down the street to the tube where I swipe my card and wave to the security guards who seem half asleep. Understandable, it’s two am and the tube is basically empty. I stay on it for a long time to reach my flat on the other side of town. I bought it a six years ago when I was twenty-one, used my advance from MI6 to do so.
I didn’t get anything big since I’m hardly ever here. I put my keys and personal phone by the door before traipsing into the kitchen to have a beer, just as I pop the cap off and bring the bottle to my lips, my work phone rings.
Bastards, I swear. “Everett.” My boss greets the second I press accept. He is a seasoned fifty year old with salt and pepper hair, who always wears suits and brogues and ties. I couldn’t imagine being so well dressed all the time, I wear jeans or joggers most of the time despite being told not to. I get away with it though as I have the highest success rate across the whole organisation.
“What’s up, Chief?” I finally take a sip of the beer I’ve been craving since six am yesterday fucking morning and throw myself onto my sofa, breathing a sigh of relief as the cotton reaches out to drag me into its depths.
“That guy Monsieur Pontiac is working mainly out of America, we’ve got the FBI and CIA looking into him for now but it’s likely we’ll be sending you over soon.”
“Oh great, send me out to yankieville. Sounds fun to me.”
“Stop complaining, you’re coming into the office tomorrow, the commander has requested you. Wear something nice for once, you keep making me look bad.”
“Aye Captain.” I snort, snuggling deeper into my couch and fighting the sleep as my eyelids droop. He hangs up and I toss my phone off somewhere and pick up my personal one, responding to my mum’s texts and agreeing to go and see her tomorrow night. I don’t get to see her as much as I’d like despite the fact I live a ten minute walk away, ever since I solved that big case as a rookie they keep sending me out over and over again.
My sisters don’t see her much either and she’s always alone, it breaks my heart but I have to make enough money to pay for her retirement and mine. Neither of us really wanna work passed the age of sixty and she’s already fifty, I’ve got ten years to accumulate enough cash. My sisters won’t help, my older sister resents her and moved to Germany to escape everything, I haven’t seen her in three years.
Her and her husband live in some massive mansion since he owns a business and she’s a freelance engineer. I find it hard to talk to her after everything she’s pulled, she ditched us when she turned nineteen and I haven’t seen her very often since. I was forced to raise my baby sister and pick up more hours at work at fifteen, helping my mum out at every opportunity. I could only join the army after all that since my grades were shit as was my rap sheet.
My little sister is three years younger than me and is a big shot actress, travelling the bloody world and ignoring phone calls from me even though I gave her everything. I paid for her auditions, her makeup, her clothes. I made sure she didn’t have to work so that she could finish school with good grades and amazing prospects but nobody cares about that once it’s done.
I’m all my mum has and I struggle to make sure she gets everything she needs. She’s been a cleaner since she got pregnant with my sister at sixteen, working the same nine hour shifts for shit cash and no pension to raise ungrateful, bastard kids that don’t even turn up to Christmas anymore. My father died when I was fifteen - my sisters blame my mum for it but it had nothing to do with her - all three of them dived into depression and I was all that was left to run the house.
Him and I hated each other, he was the main reason for my bad grades and severe fights in and out of school. He kicked me out a few times when I was fourteen which got me in with some bad people, then the idiot gets kicked out by my mum for punching me and he swallows a pack of pills in a car park with no thought about anyone else.
Still, watching everyone around me crumble exhausted me and I was working forty two hours on top of school - no wonder my grades didn’t get any better - to cover all the bills as my mum didn’t have the energy. I scrounged and saved and fought my way up the ladder to get where I am while my sisters had it given to them.
“Stop thinking, you dramatic bitch. God, more important things to do.” I growl at myself before taking out the case files in front of me and pouting. Thing I hate about this job is not the bullets or the bruises or the fighting, it’s the fucking red tape and agonising paperwork that has me screeching on an hourly basis.
I finish off my beer and toss the bottle into the bin before dragging myself to the bedroom to slip out of my clothes and into the ensuite. I point at myself in the mirror for some unknown reason before blaring my music loud enough to wake the neighbours and shower quickly. I obviously dance like an idiot and scream along to the lyrics just to keep me out of my head.
Now, what my brain likes to do when I have to be up in four hours is run rampant. Spinning all sorts of crazy ideas that have me staring at the ceiling in anger. It’s gonna be a long fucking day.