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Like A Deer Caught In Headlights

Like A Deer Caught In Headlights

I had slept in my bed alone the past few nights, James asked to stay over a couple of times, either at his place or mine, but I just did not want to be around him. All the lies and the deception, how he said he loved me, yet it was I who had to figure out the truth before he even had the guts to say anything to me. I awoke to the sound of Gaelan’s voice echoing throughout the house. I decided to just get up and see what all the commotion was about. I walked into the washroom, the icy cold tiles gave me shivers as I sat on the toilet and leaned my head in my hands. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to see James that day or to even see him at all. I may have been mad at him, solely at the fact that he had lied to me, but I still loved him and would hate myself if anything happened to him. Then again, what if I were to run this business? He never answered my question if he would be by my side or not. Would he just drop me and move on to the next or would he throw me in jail to rot? If he truly loved me, he’d be by my side no matter what. I decided to just put all of that on the back burner and focus on the ‘then and now’ without having to think of the future. Without having to think if I’d be alone once again.

I walked down the stairs, still wearing my pyjamas, where I was met by Gaelan, James, and Francois.

“Lylie my dear, good morning and how lovely you look my darling,” Gaelan grabbed my arm and pulled me toward him, nearly making me fall down the stairs. “How’d you sleep?” It was as though his thoughtfulness and integrity were forced.

“I slept just fine, thanks.”

“Bon matin chèri,” Francois said and kissed my cheeks.

“Quickly now, go have something to eat we must be on our way,” my father said. I knew something was up. He was acting weird and clearly nice to me for once. This turned my stomach.

“Go where?” I asked, looking over at James.

“Mario’s! There’s a meeting we simply must attend,” Gaelan added and spun around gracefully to the front door. “Francois and I will meet you there in thirty minutes my dear. Tata!”

I stood there, confused at his actions. “What is wrong with him this morning?” James came closer to me and leaned in for a kiss. I turned my head away. “I’m not ready for this James. I just found out you’re—”

“Lylie, it doesn’t matter. I’m sorry I didn’t tell you or even bother to care about how you feel about all of it. You want to stay, I’ll just stay with you. Just please, let me. Let me be with you. Let me in,” James said leaning his head down once more.

“I’m going to get something to eat, then I’ll meet you in my room,” I started walking off. “Not for what you think, I just have to get ready and we can talk there.”

I tiptoed into the kitchen and grabbed a sesame bagel from the basket on the counter and ate it plain with a glass of orange juice. That lovely taste of orange juice after you brush your teeth!

The house was so silent without anyone in it. All the workers were told to take the day off by the orders of Gaelan, for what reason, I wasn’t aware of. However, I did enjoy the utter silence the house barely had. Yet, having no one there when they work more or less all day every day, concerned me. Especially those who lived with us.

I walked up the stairs, chewing on the bagel, trying to come up with something to say to James without hurting his feelings. I loved him too much to even think of hurting him but I couldn’t live with the fact that he lied to me about being a cop. I already disliked Evan for doing what he was doing, now James. I wondered if I should’ve even told him any of the things that were buzzing around in my mind, or if I should’ve just keep it all in like I usually did and just let him love me. Then again, what if I made the wrong decision and it came back to bite me in the ass in the end. Why couldn’t my life be easy, simple, like a stroll in the park?

I opened the door to my room and James was sitting on the bed looking around. I wiped my mouth with the back of my hand and placed the rest of the bagel and glass of orange juice down on the dresser. James’ eyes followed me as I walked to my closet and got undressed. I stood there exposed as James got up and walked over to me, placing his hands on my shoulders to turn me. I looked up at him. He took my face and kissed me.

“I was going to tell you Lylie I was, I really didn’t know how to,” he said. I licked my lips and put my hand to his cheek. All I could do was smile and kiss him back. I went with option two, keep it all in and just let him love me, for the time being. He had changed me in some ways, opened my eyes and showed me that I was better than some hussy. I had the potential to rule.

“We better get going before Gaelan starts to wonder where we are,” I said and moved his hands away turning back to my closet.

“He said to meet him in thirty minutes,” James implied, trying to touch me. He kissed my shoulder a couple times, trying to make it to my neck.

“James, Gaelan already doesn’t trust me. I can’t be late for this. We’ll go over to your place afterwards. All right?”

“I’ll be quick,” he said andkissed my shoulder.

“James,” I said, he walked back to the bed where he sat and watched me get dressed. I wondered what the meeting could possible be about. The deal was not too far away, little did I know, most of the issues and problems had been solved. I hid the evidence on who the rats were; the numbers my father needed me to get were locked away for the time being, never the less, they had to come back out of hiding and reside at my father’s finger tips.

“You know I love watching you stand there naked, but anything you choose will look amazing on you,” James said and grinned. I turned to look at him, his grin always gave me chills of excitement, a throbbing sensation. I bit my lip and took out a pencil skirt with a fancy top. I quickly got dressed and fixed my makeup.

“Are you driving or am I?” I asked James as I put on my coat.

“I’ll drive,” we walked out of my room and down the hall. “Are you going to punish me forever?”

“Just until I forgive you I guess,” I said as I walked down the stairs.

“So there’s a possibility I’ll be forgiven?” he asked.

“Don’t push your luck, but there could be.”

We got into the car and headed over to Mario’s, in which I still had wondered what all of it could be about. There couldn’t have been new information out already, the weapons were still in the process of being packed, last I heard. I opened the window a little and lit a cigarette. The sun shinning in my eyes as I looked at the world around me flash by. The streets were clear that morning of all beings, and that frightened me. First the house and now the neighbourhood?

We arrived at Mario’s, which was no longer than a ten to fifteen minute ride from my father’s house, hoping there was not any traffic. Though on that day, there wasn’t any, being that the streets were cleared of any living species. My guess was that Gaelan ordered road blocks, or something. Then again, most people living around here knew it was Gaelan’s pub, maybe they were too frightened to even exit their homes and shops.

I got out of the car and walked into the pub. James followed and we sat down at a booth near Francois and Christof. Instantaneously, we were served coffee by the bartender whom we called Bradley, even though that wasn’t his real name, Gaelan just thought it was fitting. Bradley asked if we wanted anything to eat. Both James and I shook our heads.

“We have to talk about something James,” Francois started.

“Yeah, what about?” he asked, his accent came back, as he poured sugar and stirred his coffee.

Francois flicked his cigarette. “Rats.”

“Rats? Those disgusting creatures that eat at your garbage…those rats?” James asked, looking over at me.

“Yeah, those ugly fucking rats that get into everything,” Francois took a drag of his cigarette. Christof had been eating pancakes as they were speaking and the way he was scoffing them down, it looked as though he had never eaten pancakes before.

“Okay, I don’t really know anything about rats—”

“Are you working for the cops?” Francois asked, flicking his cigarette once more.

“What? Are you seriously asking me, me, if I’m a rat?” James chuckled and turned to me. I had a smirk on my face and I blew at my coffee to try and cool it off.

“Are you sure you’re not a rat?” Francois asked once more.


Francois looked over at me, then at Christof, who had some maple syrup leaking down his chin. The two of them burst out laughing.

“We’re just fucking with you James!” Christof said, mouth full of pancake. James laughed, nervously, along with them. “But we think Gaelan has lost his fucking mind. Listen to this,” he leaned in closer to James and I. “He wants us to kill anyone and everyone associated with this deal.”

“What?” I asked.

“Yeah, he thinks the less people that know the better. It doesn’t make any sense to me but he is your father,” Francois said.

“Not by choice,” I started. “I don’t understand. You know how many people know about this deal? Everyone in Japan who my father has been in contact with including anyone and everyone who can speak Japanese within a ten mile radius. Is he insane?”

“Something switched in his brain or something,” Christof said as Gaelan was walking out of the backroom whistling. Gaelan was covered in blood, his hands were as though he had dipped them in red dye.

“What the fuck is going on?” I pushed James out of my way and I stood. “Gaelan…what—”

“Lylie, my sweet, please, all this will be understood shortly. But first I want you and James to head to this address,” he nodded at Bradley who handed James a piece of paper. “All your questions will be answered soon enough.”

“What’s going on back there?” I asked. James was standing behind me and took my hand trying to get me to leave with him. I pushed Gaelan out of the way and headed, quickly, for the backroom. There was a man lying on a table naked, no arms, nor legs, shivering, and crying. Andy was standing next to him holding a large butchers knife. Andy started walking towards me but I grabbed a bloody gun off the counter. “Back the fuck off.” Andy stopped, smiled, and put the knife down. Blood was everywhere and the stench that was infiltrating my nostrils making me want to gag.

“Who the fuck is this Andy?” I asked, angry and frustrated. All Andy did was laugh in my face. I scanned the room quickly, but everything had been covered in plastic, not the best of jobs I might add. Though on the counter, next to where the gun was, a shiny piece of metal lay exposed and untouched by the massive amounts of blood, another rat? Who was he? I had never seen nor heard of a man working for us outside the crew. He was not Japanese either so he couldn’t have been one of the men my father had met with. The man on the table groaned and cried. He tried to call out to me, to say something, but he had no tongue. The partial man on the table was shaking, yet I knew there was nothing I could do but put him out of his misery. I looked down at him. “I’m so sorry,” and shot him in the head. Blood splattering.

“Finally growing some balls there Lylie,” Andy said chuckling. “Looks like you passed phase one.”

“Oh shut the fuck up!” I looked down at the man who’s eyes were still open, I brushed my hands over his bloody face to close his eye lids. I took a deep breath in that stench and turned to see Gaelan, who had walked over and watched as I killed that man. “How could you do something like this? What the fuck were you even thinking?…I mean, this isn’t what we do Gaelan. How could you do this?”

“Well, I was just thinking of harvesting his meat,” Gaelan chuckled. Francois was standing behind him shaking his head, Christof couldn’t even look and stayed seated at the booth.

“You disgust me,” I said and clenched the gun. I walked past him.

“See here everyone, this beautiful woman standing here, this beautiful woman who just killed that man; yes he did deserved it, but this beautiful woman is my daughter. My flesh and blood,” Gaelan said smiling. “Phase one complete,” he said under his breath. What the fuck were they talking about?

Everyone was staring at me, I felt like a deer caught in headlights unsure on what to do next. It felt like that time in elementary school when I stood in front of the class to do a presentation and I accidentally forgot what to say. I froze. I stood there as their tiny eyes pierced into my soul. I felt vulnerable and alone. All I wanted to do was cry. That moment was similar to how I had felt standing there with everyone’s eyes on me. Everyone who not only was in business with my father, including the bar tenders, but the random civilians in the pub, staring at me like I was some crazed lunatic. What were they doing there anyhow? More people in the crew I didn’t know of?

I didn’t know what to do. Take a stand? If I did, I could end up dead, or worse, like the guy on the table. So, I stood there and took it. My left arm going numb from squeezing the gun too tightly.

“Here’s your chance Lylie. You want to rule? You want to make the decisions around here on who to kill instead of who to fuck, then go ahead, enter phase two,” he took my hand that was holding the gun and held it to his head. “Seems like we’ve switched places all of a sudden. Except, I ain’t scared to do shit. I didn’t pull the trigger because that would be the pussy way out kid, in your case, leaving a blood bath is your way of showing some balls.”

My nostrils flared as my emotions grew from anger, to sorrow, to pure embarrassment. ‘Blood bath?’ It seemed like he knew what had happened to Donnie, like he knew I killed him. Everyone was still staring at me, yet knew that they couldn’t do anything because if they did, my father would do to them what he had done to that man in the backroom. Gaelan believed I wouldn’t do it, yet I knew I could. He said he was able to pull the trigger, yet when he had a gun to my head, he chickened out. I didn’t understand the whole game they were playing. Phases? Just as I was about to squeeze the trigger, he pushed the gun from my hand and grabbed it. The bullet hitting his ear instead. Gaelan grabbed my face, causing me to groan from how rough and hard he squeezed my cheeks.

“Get the fuck outta my sight,” he said and pushed me to the ground, blood from his hands smeared on my face. I stood, and spat at him as I walked toward James and grabbed my coat.

“Again, my daughter everyone!”

The chilled summer breeze hitting my face as I walked out of the bar and put my coat on. Christof’s brother Alexi—who recently owed my father money like Christof did—and an Irishman, Liam, who had just joined the crew and was the only Irishman with an accent in the crew, were outside making sure no one aside from Gaelan’s henchman entered.

“What the fuck happened to ya?” Liam asked.

“Nothing, nothing at all,” I turned and walked in the opposite direction. Slight mist started as I made it to the end of the street, before I could even make it to the next block, it started raining. I lifted the collar to my coat and just kept on. I could hear footsteps behind me getting louder and closer, but I did not turn. If it was my turn to go then so be it.

An arm wrapped around me causing me to nearly fall, though, instead, I was held tightly. Taking my head in his hands, James kissed my forehead.

“I didn’t know what else to do,” I said.

“You had no choice but to kill him I get it,” James said, his accent gone.

“I was talking about Gaelan. I had my chance, my finger on the trigger but I hesitated and shot too late, hitting this fucking ear. If he didn’t move my arm, it would have been over, right? All this bullshit would be done with but it scared me. I wasn’t going to do it. I want to, but I just couldn’t do it.”

“It’ll be all right,” James said, putting his arm around me as we started walking.

“No, it’s not. He has to be stopped.”

“There’s nothing you can do Lylie, I mean all that can be done is getting rid of him. But—let’s just leave. Tonight. Just pack up and go anywhere,” James said. He stopped walking and held my hands. “Gaelan has lost his mind and who knows what else he’ll do. Let’s just go somewhere, anywhere. We could just drive and see where that takes us.”

“I’m not going anywhere James. More people are going to be killed and if I leave, he will kill every person that comes in his way trying to find me. I can’t let that happen. I know too much to even think of leaving. He doesn’t trust me and thinks I’ll rat him and the guys out. It’s a lot easier said than done and no cop or witness protection can save us.”

He kissed my head and we continued walking in the rain. He put his arm around me trying to keep me warm, but I was shivering out of fright of what was to come. Rain was perfect for any moment. It washed away all sins.

We double backed and got in to the car. James and I said nothing to one another the whole ride home, including walking into the house, up the stairs, and to my room. Why he followed me to my room I still don’t understand. I wanted to be alone and figure out what I was going to do next. It seemed as though I had messed up everything, as though I was a guy and prematurely ejaculated before my dick even entered her. I should have waited before showing my balls, I should have waited before taking a stand. Gaelan now thought I was out to replace him, though let’s face it, I was, but I did not want him to find out just yet. I had a plan and I was going to stick to that plan, yet as the plan started, everything was already crumbling.

“Are you still mad?” James asked sitting at the foot my bed.

“Mad. Mad is an understatement. The things I want to do to that man to just get him off the face of the earth are unbelievable,” I threw my shoes into the closet along with my clothes. Everything had blood on it. “Even the bare thought of seeing him right now makes me want to scream.” James remained silent for a moment.

I kept my back to him but as I turned he was just staring at me. I wasn’t sure if it was the look of concern or disappointment but there was something there. I just didn’t want to deal with it right then. I took out a clean set of clothes and lie them on my bed. I so desperately needed to shower, but I just clothed myself instead and faced out the window, wishing I was some place else.

“I meant at me,” James said, finally looking away. He was rubbing his hands together, I stopped, and sat in the chair next to me.

“I don’t know,” I started. “Why wouldn’t you just tell me?”

“I was scared. I was scared that you were not who you portrayed yourself to be, that you were just some whore who worked for Gaelan.”

“Oh, well, that helps.”

“I didn’t mean it like that Lylie. I just didn’t know if I could trust you. I was going to tell you, right after the deal was done.”

“Right after our bodies were mutilated and thrown into a pit in the middle of nowhere,” I shifted in the chair watching as the willow tree danced in the rain.

“Have you even given it thought? Y’know, leading these people into change, being Gaelan when he first started.”

“I have a plan James, I do. It may be a rocky plan at the moment, but it’s a plan all the same.”

“What is your plan?” he asked. I was speechless, and not because he asked, but because I wasn’t sure. Did I have a plan or was it just what I told myself to keep me focused on not giving up. What was the actual plan? “ And am I included in that plan?” James asked.

“I haven’t decided that yet,” I stood, walked over to him and leaned down in front of him. “I love you James, I do. I just have no idea if I can trust you.”

“How can I show you that you can trust me then?”

“Take him down with me, but on my terms. That means no more being a rat. If you want to be a criminal, be a criminal like a big boy and not by holding your fed fellows’ hands. You wanted to act dirty, that’s why you became an undercover, so then act dirty.”

“I can’t stop seeing Deagan and Marshall. They’ll know something is up and pull the plug on the whole thing. And by pulling the plug they’ll tell your brother everything and your brother is gonna tell your dad. It’s not that easy Lylie,” James said, brushing my cheek. “I love you and I’d do anything to prove it—”

“Then prove it to me.”


“You’re supposed to get a call from Marshall right? Asking how everything is going; don’t tell him anything. Make something up. He doesn’t need to know about what happened today and he doesn’t need to know about this address we’re going to. The deal is two days from now, that’s all they know and leave it that way. I promise you, all this will be over soon.”

James and I pulled up to the address scribbled on the paper. I still had no idea what on earth would be behind that door, but James and I decided to just go for it and hope that it wasn’t an execution.

There was something about Brooklyn that always made my skin crawl. I loved it here, Mario’s was just outside of Brooklyn Heights, we lived right by the water in the most beautiful home I have ever seen, business was great for us there, the crime rate never dropped; and best of all, we were simply a bridge away from downtown Manhattan and a drive away from Jersey. However, it always seemed as though something were missing. Even though my life changed drastically from my hometown, there was something homely about that hole in the wall and nothing homely about it. Needless to say, it was indeed a step up from England, something wasn’t there, but something just didn’t fit right.

“Should we park somewhere else besides in front of the house?” I asked, in a very insisting manner.

“Doesn’t look like anyone’s home. What’re we supposed to do here anyway? What if there is someone home. Do we just walk into their house and introduce ourselves?”

“Gaelan wanted us to go to this address meaning there is probably something waiting for us James. Now move the car up a little,” I said, keeping my eye on the house. Then again, it did not look much like a house, nor did it look private. Both of the neighbours are attached, practically sharing a front lawn with one another. The house we were told to go see, was in the middle of the two. The first was decorated so nicely, flowers in the garden, lace curtains in the windows, the other at the far end had newspaper in the windows, garbage out front and a large sign that read Beware of the Dawg. Then there was the one in the middle. Simple, plain, nothing I’m the windows, no flowers nor garbage in the garden. I grabbed a gun from the glove compartment and put it in the back of my jeans, and James did the same.

James and I walked up to the house and rang the bell. I looked over at him and shrugged. James knocked on the door a couple times, while I leaned over and checked the windows. There was no sound on the inside, nor was there movement in the windows.

“I wonder if this guy knew we were coming and bailed,” James said looking around for a key.

“I’m going to walk around back. Seems like the most logical way to get in,” I said and stepped away from the window.

“Have you ever even broken into someone’s house before?”

“Have you?” I asked, grinning.

“My father taught me how to pick a lock when I was younger. He was—never mind,” James said and lifted the welcome mat. I remembered my father poking at the subject of James’ father. Then again, James Costa wasn’t even his real name, so how could my father even have known anything about Tommy Harding being his father. There was no way Gaelan knew that James was a rat. No way that even Evan knew about him. I wondered why I still called him James, probably out of habit or my mind’s way of averting reality.

“I used to break into people’s houses all the time in England. When we were low on food or when we couldn’t afford to pay that month’s rent, I’d take things and pawn them off. Once I even took a chicken dinner from the oven because I hadn’t eaten anything that day. Took it right from the oven without mitts. I still got the scar to prove it. Kind of tragic really but comes in handy I guess,” I said, smiled and showed him my hand.

“Wow, um—”

“Pay no mind to it love, it’s all in the past. I’ll be right around back,” I walked down the three steps and turned the corner. As I got to the back alley behind the houses, a dog started barking and jumping at the fence. I remembered when I had first moved into the home with Stacy and my father, they had owned two German-shepherds and a black lab. Adolf and Niko were the shepherds and Molly was the lab. I was always fond of Molly, she would follow me around wherever I went. Then one day, when I had come back from a job, they were just gone. Gaelan never told me what happened to them or to who they were given to or if they were alive. Gaelan never let me keep anything that I somewhat cherished. Rose was killed—though he never truly stated that he killed her, I just knew deep in my heart that it was he who had ordered the ‘accident’—Damon was murdered, my dogs were taken away, my dignity. Next thing on the list was James, a day I was dreading and hoped would never come. I bet he’d kill James just to teach me a lesson or something.

The back of the house was where all the crud was. Tattered boxes and bins scattered the area. What once was a patio set was covered in leaves and dirt over the rainy and mucky summer. Then again, it did not seem as though it had ever been used. Mud covered my feet as I walked into the yard.

The back door was unlocked. That had left me worried. I took a few steps back and looked over to see James, who was passing the dog in the next yard.

“The back door’s unlocked,” I said as he stepped into the yard. I opened the door a little more and took the gun out of the back of my pants. James took his gun out as well, then moved me out of the way so that he could enter first.

The house had a stagnant smell as though no one had lived there in a while. Dust and mud covered the floors and left foot prints, like Hansel and Gretel’s bread crumbs, in the kitchen. Cobwebs hung from the ceiling and gave me chills down my spine. I was so dreadfully scared of spiders. Just the thought of them possibly being in the house made me want to run out of it. My home back in England was the worst for them, I couldn’t remember a night where I didn’t have some form of creature crawl on my bed.

The kitchen had an opening to what once was a living area. There was nothing of the sort left behind to show, aside from a knocked over table without chairs. James stopped at the bottom of the stairs, near the front door, and looked up.

“Should we even check? This place seems pretty deserted,” he kept his gaze at the top of the stairs, as if half expecting something to pop out.

“I don’t understand why my father would send us here if there was nothing to be seen or found. This doesn’t make any sense.”

“Maybe Gaelan brought us here so he could kill us. But the guy who was supposed to do it got lazy and just decided to leave,” James said.

“My father isn’t that stupid to hire a lazy gunman. There’s something more to this whole thing,” I stepped in front of James and started walking up the stairs. Nearly each step creaked, giving away our location, that being if there was even someone in the house.

There were stains on the walls of where hanging photo frames once were. I remembered our home in England, my mother wasn’t one to hang photographs, neither one for taking photographs, but there was one photograph she took when I was three. We were standing right outside of Buckingham Palace, smiling. It hung on our wall in the kitchen for as long as I could remember. Although, when my mother decided to use our home as her ‘work space,’ that photograph was taken down and never seen again. I sometimes wondered what that place looked like, if the current owners fixed it up, if there were people even living in it. And if there were people living in it, then had they found that photograph? I hadn’t seen Buckingham Palace since that day, I don’t even remember going at all. What I do remember, was the happiness a simple photograph brought to our home.

The spare bedroom door was open and empty, not even a bed reside in it. The washroom still had urine in the toilet from God only knew how long ago. The only room whose door was shut, was the master bedroom. James had put me behind him as he raised the gun up while opening the door. The bedroom was also empty, though a large black desk rest at the centre with a computer and papers all over the floors and walls. My photograph hung next to Gaelan’s with a string attached by two pins that led to a photograph of James. There were paparazzi shots of James and I from the forth of July, photographs of Gaelan and Francois throwing garbage bags into a container. What had scared me the most was a photograph of my mother and a man who resembled my father, the night she died.

I knew it was that night because of what she was wearing. She had told me that she would be home to celebrate my birthday a day before my actual birthday because she worked the next night. She and I had gone shopping and bought ourselves, what she called, ‘Lylie’s Sweet-Sixteen Outfits,’ they consisted of a red top with a grey skirt. We matched one another and my mother thought that it was just grand. She had put the outfit on that night when she left and told me that she would return with my cake. However, that was one thing that never happened.

“What the fuck is all of this?” James said standing in front of the wall of photographs, portraits of every person in the crew, of their houses, their significant others. I walked over to the desk and noticed that not only was it severely unorganized, but the cup of coffee that reside at the edge of the desk, had dancing steam coming from it. I looked around at the pieces of paper on the desk. My eyes shifted from one paper to the next until I spotted what I was looking for, it was the same paper my father wanted, the numbers.

“James,” I said as I heard the front door open. James looked at me and held up his gun. The person was clearly a man with all that swearing and complaining, even though half of it was under his breath. He started walking up the stairs when I snagged the photograph of my mother Rose and Gaelan and crumbled it into my pocket. I stood next to the desk as the man stopped at the top of the steps, spotting us.

“Deagan?” James said and lowered his weapon.

“The fuck are you guys doing here?” he asked and walked toward us. “How’d you find this place?”

I turned back for a second and looked at the desk. I grabbed the paper and held it up. I looked at it for a moment and shifted my eyes from one sequence of numbers to the next. The looked like account numbers and passwords. These numbers were important to Gaelan because he needed them for the deal. These must’ve been the clients that we were shipping the guns to, at least I thought.

“So you’re the real rat,” I started looking down at the paper.

“What are you talking about?” James asked.

“You and Donnie worked for Gaelan all this time,” I went on and lifted the piece of paper with the numbers up. “These aren’t numbers either. These are account numbers. It all makes sense now.”

“Lylie—” James said.

“He keeps you wrapped around his finger so that everything that goes down is never traced back to him. Using James as a distraction for your bureau so that they won’t notice who the real rat is. Are all these numbers the rats? This is the only thing I can’t seem to figure out just yet.”

“Yeah so who’re you? Nancy Drew or something? What’s any of this to you?” Deagan said. “You can’t prove any of this either. All this shit is just accusations you’re making.”

“My brother was the one who told me this was an inside job.”

“You don’t think I know your brother is also Gaelan’s intel. It was hilarious when he walked into my department looking for a job. We all knew he was nothing but a sleaze bag,” Deagan said, walking over to his desk to put the brown paper bag down.

“So you knew all of the crazy shit that Gaelan was doing. Chopping up people, killing innocent people, and you did nothing about it,” James said.

“Let’s face it, Gaelan doesn’t trust Evan. Ever since he told him that he wanted to be a cop, Gaelan came searching for his eye, his way in. You know how Gaelan brags about how easy the Columbian deal was? I was the one who led my men away from the deal. I led them so far, that not a single trace of cocaine was found in that warehouse when my men did find the location. I’m just that good,” Deagan said, as he sat down in his chair getting ready to eat whatever was in that grease ridden bag.

“The deal was on a boat,” James said.

“Where do you think they made the stuff?” Deagan said, reaching for his coffee.

“How many people has he chopped up? How many more will there be?” I said, placing gym hand over the cup so he could listen to what I had to say.

“More than you think kiddo,” Deagan said.

“He just pays you to keep your mouth shut and pretty much do the opposite of your job, what you took an oath to. Let me ask you something Deagan, did you ever think that maybe Gaelan wouldn’t need you any more?” I asked leaning forward on his desk. “Did you ever think that maybe your time was up?”

“What the fuck is that supposed to mean?” said Deagan, as he looked over at James and the gun.

“Gaelan sent us here,” James said. “Not sure for what reason, but it’s getting kind of clearer now.”

“To kill me? Please, I seen the botched murder this one did on Donnie and you, c’mon when we picked you out of the rookies, you were too scared to even hurt a fly. Gaelan wanted Tommy, but I gave him you. Gaelan would show me more respect than that with all the help I’ve given him over the years.”

I turned my head and looked up at James. I had no idea what we were going to do. I wanted to just kill him and get this over with, but I don’t think that was the reason my father sent us here. What I had thought was Deagan would see us and kill us, but instead he’s laughing at us. Poking fun at how immature we seemed to be. I knew that killing Donnie was going to come back and bite me in the ass, but I had not expected it to laugh in my face.

“Clearly you don’t know my father well enough,” I said.

“Lylie, what are you going to do?” James asked, a little worried.

“What you don’t think I can kill you?” I said while taking out my gun. “I mean what’s more respectful than having Gaelan’s only daughter do it?”

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