Starsky fell to the ground, choking on dust as he struggled to catch his breath, his side screaming out in pain as he landed on the packed earth from the shove that Diesel gave him, as the big blue Harley slowed to a stop.
“Get up, ‘Little Brother,’” the blond sneered, his blue eyes bright with rage as he turned off the engine, slowly getting off of his motorcycle. “Get up, Davey-boy. It’s time I teach you a lesson about lyin’ to others.”
Gasping, Starsky struggled to his feet, staggering with pain and with the burning need for more cocaine, his heavy, fatigued body dragging him down once more as a fit of coughing tore through his side.
Diesel watched as the brunet attempted to rise, hearing him softly groan as he clutched his side, feeling a twinge of respect for the valiant efforts of the dark haired cop. The blond biker steeled his heart against the pity that surged within for the detective, reminding himself that this man was his enemy, a betrayer, a deceiver, a Judas to the club.
Diesel dragged his fingers through his long blond hair, pushing it back from his sweaty face as he looked around the desolate place. It was quiet. His blue eyes searched the horizon, glancing upon the nearby shrubs and heavy bushes that hid the secret resting place of the enemies to “The Minions,” before finally lighting upon the hole in the ground a few feet away from them. The ‘abyss’, a name dubbed by the chapter, was an abandoned well that had dried up a decade or so ago, and was now the club’s undisclosed disposal bin.
This land was part of the two-acre spread that belonged to the family of “Diablo”, the former president of the Minions, who now was safely ensconced behind bars for the murder of his old lady. For years, this parcel of land was virtually uninhabited, except for the bugs and lesser forms of life that crawled over the unforgiving terrain. The bushes, shrubs and weeds that managed to scrape out an existence in the dry wasteland never failed to make the blond wonder at nature’s tough resilience and will to live . . . something that this cop would never have the chance to do. Today was the day that David Michael Starsky would breathe his last, and if Diesel were honest with himself, that thought saddened him.
The blond sighed, his heart heavy for what he needed to do, the responsibilities of his position, a huge weight upon his shoulders, but the club needed him to carry out the sentence upon Snake; a man they had embraced, a man they had learned to trust and respect, a man Diesel himself, had extended the hand of friendship to, a man he had cared about and called ‘Little Brother.’ Fueling his anger on that thought, Diesel quickly stomped over and grabbed the wounded man by his arm, dragging the brunet over to the deep, barren hole in the ground.
Starsky groaned softly, sharp rocks and thorny patches of weeds cut into his arms and back as he was dragged across the rocky terrain, gasping in pain as his stretched ribcage screamed in agony while Diesel continued to roughly yank on his left arm until they finally got to the gaping hole.
The tall blond stood, feet askance, letting Starsky’s arm drop limply back to the ground, watching as the dark haired cop rolled on his right side, his right arm wrapping around his left ribs once more, gasping as another coughing jag ripped through his being, his hurting form curling into the pain. Diesel looked down at the dark haired cop who struggled to breathe through the hacking coughs, knowing how much pain his “friend” was in. The tall blond drew his gun from his pocket, and knelt down next to the suffering brunet, his voice though soft, was hardened. “Here, little brother, why don’t you let me help ya. I can put you out of your misery right here and right now!”
Starsky attempted to draw in a breath, his strained breathing was rapid and shallow, the pain in his side brutally spearing him with each labored intake of air. He could see the dusty leather boots that stood beside him and the brunet wearily lifted sapphire-blue eyes to the blond who crouched beside him.
The coughing jag had left the detective feeling so weak, his lungs constricted and burning. Starsky squinted as he looked upon the shadowed face of the golden haired man, the brightness of the sun haloing around the head of the blond biker, like it did in his dream, the prominent icy glare seemingly glowing from the dark sunken angles on the biker’s face. Breathing heavily, Starsky dropped his eyes to the gun that Diesel held, then lifted them back to the angry face of the blond. “Diesel . . . listen to me . . . it’s not . . . not too late . . . you can help me . . . and I’ll try to help y . . .” the rasping voice of the brunet was cut short as Diesel interjected.
“You think I’d betray my chapter? You think I’d turn on them . . . on Jasper and the others
. . . you think I would do what you did to us?” The tall blond shook his head, a look of disgust plainly written on his handsome face. “You have no honor, man. You’d sell your own mother out just for the accolades you get from your job. You make me sick! I thought you and me were cut from the same cloth, but I was wrong. You blind-sided me, man . . . and to think that Sniper saw through your disguise the whole time . . . Fuck!”
“You’re wrong,” Starsky gasped, struggling to pull himself up, “We are cut . . . from the same cloth . . . but we just wear . . . different patches. You would’a made . . . a great cop Deis. . .”
“Fuck you, man!” Diesel snapped. “You cops are all crooked! I know because I have some on my payroll right now! I’ve seen what you call “law enforcement!” I’ve seen how you uphold law and order with a stick and a gun, how you threaten people into submission, how you shoot first and ask questions later. You guys are nothin’ but a bunch of bikers wearin’ blue, man. You think wearing a piece of tin makes it right to beat on others? You think hiding behind a badge makes it right to take someone down? You disgust me . . .”
“Yeah?” Starsky gasped, “I used to think the same way ‘bout you filthy bikers . . . ‘til I met you . . . and Jasper . . . and the others . . . used’ta think you were all like Sniper . . . but I was wrong . . . like how you’re wrong about cops . . .”
“Just shut the fuck up!” Diesel drew back his boot and kicked at downed man in his anger, feeling sick as he heard the brunet gasp and softly groan in pain at the brutal contact. The tall blond struggled to get a hold of his temper, as bitter memories he had thought long buried rose to the forefront.
Taking in a deep breath, Diesel looked at the hurting cop, his pale blue eyes were filled with anguish as he softly whispered. “I ain’t wrong, man. I saw that cop blow away my little brother right in front of my eyes. Jessie . . . he looked just like you, man . . . curly dark hair, eyes the color of the ocean on a stormy night. We used’ta play cops and robbers when we were little, and he always wanted to be the cop . . . always wanted to be the good guy. He said they stood for what was right.”
The tall blond felt the unshed tears that suddenly filled his eyes and he looked out to the horizon once again, blinking the salty moisture back, shaking his head slowly as the painful memories washed over him. “They killed him, man . . . they just shot him down thinking he was part of the gang I hung out with. He’d come to get me, the night that all hell broke loose, tellin’ me to come home . . . and the cops . . . they came and surrounded us . . . and they shot him . . . and he died . . . just like that. Jessie died right here in my arms, man . . . lookin’ at me with those dark blue eyes of his . . . until they closed forever . . .”
Starsky felt a lump come to his throat as he watched the tall blond struggle to get a hold of his emotions, feeling sick inside about what happened to Diesel’s little brother, thoughts of Jackson being gunned down in an alley by a trigger hungry rookie came to mind.
“Hey,” the dark haired cop whispered, drawing the anguished filled gaze of the blond. “I’m sorry, man . . . ‘bout Jessie . . . I lost my dad that way . . . he was gunned down when I was a kid . . . saw the whole thing. I held his head in my lap as he took . . . took his last breath.”
The tall blond eyed the wounded cop, feeling a twinge in his heart for the brunet’s loss. “We lost our pop too, he was killed in prison by a guard. Was your pop killed by a cop too?”
Starsky shook his head. “My pop was a cop . . . guess in a way, that’s why I became one too.”
Diesel snorted softly, the snicker sounding strangely like Hutch’s and it made the brunet long to see his partner once more. There were so many things he had wished he would’ve told Hutch, but now it was too late. For a moment, the two men stared at one another, the only thing they could hear was the soft rustle of dry leaves from the huge bush that stood nearby, the soft whispering of the dust as it blew across the hard terrain, and the labored breathing of the dark haired cop. Starsky looked up when he heard the “click”, as Diesel armed the gun that was pointing at him.
“It’s too bad you had to get involved in all of this Davey-boy, you really had us goin’. You really had me goin’, little brother.”
Starsky blinked the sweat from his eyes, listening to the soft wheezing that came from his burning lungs as he drew in another small breath. “So ya gonna blow me away . . . like ya did to Brody . . . that night? Ya gonna dump . . . me in that hole? How many . . . how many bodies are in that well, huh?” The dark haired cop labored to draw another breath in, setting off another round of coughs that tore through his lungs and ribs. “Uungh,” Starsky groaned softly, clutching his side as bolts of fiery pain flared in his ribs from the jolting his body took as he continued to cough relentlessly.
It killed the blond biker to see the cop struggling to catch his breath as the coughing jag made the brunet double over in pain. Diesel sighed and stooped down to help Starsky sit up, wincing in sympathy as the cop gasped in pain. Cupping his hands, Diesel lightly pounding on the upper back of the brunet to clear his airway, angrily scolding the dark haired biker. “You stupid idiot, smokin’ and snortin’ when you have a fucked up lung. What the shit do you think you were doing, huh? You fuckin’ cops, sacrificing yourself for your fuckin’ job! I can hear you wheezing from a mile away, man. You think you’re some kind of a god, immune to death or something just because you made it through that shooting in the police garage? It’s like you got a second chance at life, little brother, and you’re blowing it away! Just what the fuck were you thinkin’ when you signed up for th . . .”
“What the hell do you care?” Starsky rasped, sucking in oxygen as the coughing finally ceased, the light pounding on the back of his lungs helped to ease the tightening of his airway, allowing the brunet to breathe a little easier. The dark haired cop turned to stare at the tall blond who suddenly stopped his ministrations, light and dark blue fusing together, eyes speaking volumes where words remained silent. For a minute, Starsky was reminded of another blond who took great joy in mother-henning him to death and that thought brought a small, sad smile to his lips.
Starsky snorted softly, almost sneering as he watched the blond pick up the gun once more. The wounded cop sighed as Diesel pointed it once again in his direction and he lowered his eyes as he grabbed a handful of dirt, tossing it out a few feet in front of him. “You talk about valuing life, but you can blow people away . . . without a second thought. Iguess you’re gonna do to me . . . just what ya did to Brody?”
“Yeah, I’m gonna do you like how I did Brody,” Diesel said, quickly coming around to the front of the cop, crouching down beside him, “Now shut the fuck up and listen good,” the blond ordered. “I’m gonna let ch’ya go . . . just like how I let Brody go that night when I brought him out here.”
Starsky stared at the blond, his eyes widened with bewilderment. “Wh-What?” You let Brody go? But you said you killed him . . .you . . .”
“I never said I killed him, little brother,” the blond smiled gently. “I just answered your question with a question . . . let you believe whatever the hell you wanted to.” The biker shook his head and chuckled with amusement as he looked into the dark blue eyes of the cop, “Shit man, you look so much like my Jessie. It’s like I’m fuckin’ lookin’ at him right now. If I killed you, it would be like killin’ Jessie all over again . . .’sides . . . if I killed you now, I’d probably live to regret it. You and I know that there ain’t no reverse gears on a bike, little brother, so I guess I’m gonna have to let ch’ya go. Don’t want no regrets, right? ” Diesel snorted, his pale blue eyes softening with affection as he reached out his large calloused hand to ruffled the dark curls, “C’mon Snake, I know you feel like shit, but you gotta get up, and I ain’t givin ya no more coke neither . . . not with that fucked up lung of yours!”
The tall blond tucked his gun into the back of his jeans and gently pulled Starsky to his feet, helping to support the wounded cop who bent over in pain. Diesel squinted and looked around once more at the dry terrain saying gruffly. “Listen Snake, Jinx and some army buddies of mine should be here shortly. I wasn’t too sure what I would do with you, wasn’t sure I wanted to blow you away just yet, but they said they would come out anyway. Guess Jinx knew me well enough to know that I couldn’t kill ya. They’re gonna help me and take you away from here . . . drop ya off over the border like we did for Brody and his old lady, Ya gotta stay low for a few years. The outlaws have their own way of dealing with snitches and their reach is far and wide. Ya rode with us long enough t’know that by now. The word will be out now that you were a cover cop, hopefully they’ll think I blew ya off out here at the abyss, it’ll buy ya some time.
“I don’t think so, prick! You’re time has fuckin’ run out right now!”
Both men, one light and one dark, turned to look at the Sniper who calmly walked out from behind the bushes, a sawed off shotgun cocked and ready, pointing straight at the curly haired cop.
Sniper chuckled, a dangerous glint in his eye. “I knew you’d let him go Diesel, knew you wouldn’t have the balls to carry out the sentence for our chapter. You’re a fuckin’ wimp, man . . . a humiliation to our club . . . and you call yourself honorable. What a fuckin’ joke!” the redhead snarled, his green eyes never leaving the wounded cop who struggled to remain standing, breathing rapid shallow breaths as he surfed through the pain that hammered away in his skull and at his side.
“Snipe, put that fuckin’ shotgun down before you shoot yourself in the ass!” Diesel snapped, his eyes turning the color of ice as he glared at the redhead who wisely remained a few feet away. “Gimme the gun, Snipe,” Diesel said, lowering his voice until it was soothing and soft, seeing the redhead shaking like a leaf. The tall blond wasn’t sure if it was fear or withdrawal from drugs that gave Sniper the tremors, but he knew for sure that the redhead was a loose cannon. Diesel kept his voice low, “Let me deal with all of this. Ride on back to the warehouse Snipe, I’ll meet you there in . . .”
“Fuck you, Diesel,” Sniper growled, the shotgun trembling in his unsteady hands. “Don’t try to trick me. I ain’t buying any of that president shit and I ain’t listenin’ to your fuckin’ orders no more. You’re as bad as he is,” the redhead nodded at the brunet. “Now move away from that stinkin’ cop. I wanna watch the sunset from the hole I’m gonna make through his belly!” The skinny redhead laughed insanely, priding himself on his clever speech, his green eyes glittering dangerously as he lowered the shotgun’s point to the brunet’s midsection. “Hurry the fuck up and move away from him, Diesel, before I fuckin’ shoot you too.”
Breathing heavily, Starksy tracked the movement of the gun as it lowered to his stomach. He could feel Diesel slowly loosening his hold on him as the biker made to move away. The dark haired biker could feel the trembling in his own limbs as he struggled to stay upright, the heavy tiredness from the withdrawal of the drug made the brunet want to sink to the dirt, but stubborn pride made him hold his ground as he blinked the perspiration from his cobalt colored eyes and glared back at the sneering redhead.
“Okay, Snipe,” Diesel spoke calmly, drawing the redhead’s attention, as he slowly held his hands out to the side. “Take it easy, man. I’m gonna step away from Snake, okay?” The tall blond slowly moved away from the brunet, his eyes never leaving Sniper’s bruised and battered face, intuitively knowing that the curly haired cop was struggling to remain standing without his support.
Sniper laughed, loving the power he felt at that moment, seeing his president obeying his orders. “Fuck, I wish everyone could see this now! The great, fuckin’ almighty Diesel is listening to me. I bet you would fuckin’ think twice before slapping me around again, huh asshole?” Sniper grinned, relishing the moment, feeling empowered by the heavy weight of the shotgun in hand, “I wish I had been there to see your brother Jessie eat that cop’s bullet. Such a heartbreaking story, Diesel, but your obligation to the club was to execute this cop. I never knew what a yellow chicken you really were! When we go back, Diesel, I’m gonna be the new president once I tell everyone that you’ve been letting our enemies go, and you know what? I might not have been there to see your brother die, but at least today we both can watch this fuckin’ pig bite the dust. One less cop in the world, and I get the fuckin’ honor of plugging him for ya!” the redhead sneered as he aimed the gun at the dark haired cop and pulled the trigger.
Starsky scrunched his eyes, pain exploded in his being, flooding his quaking limbs as the air was suddenly knocked out of him when he hit the hard, dusty ground. Gasping, the brunet struggled to take in a breath, but the heavy form lying across his chest inhibited his lungs from expanding The loud blast from the shotgun reverberated in the stillness of the terrain and Starsky opened his eyes to see Diesel lying on top of him.
“No!” the brunet gasped, realizing sluggishly that the blond had jumped in front of the bullet meant for him, attempting to push the wounded cop out of the way, but slamming into him instead from the force of the bullet. Gasping, breathing heavily as he struggled to maneuver himself from beneath the tall blond, Starsky pulled himself into a sitting position, turning Diesel so that he could cradle the biker’s golden head onto his lap. “Diesel!” Starsky whispered, shaking his head in denial as he used both of his hands to cover the blond’s abdomen, trying to staunch the flow of bright red blood that rapidly seeped out.
“Uungh” the blond groaned softly, his own hands moving to cover Starsky’s, gasping as unbearable pain flared red-hot in his mid-section. Diesel opened his pale blue eyes and stared up into a stormy ocean of blue that locked and held his gaze. “J-Jessie?” the hurting blond whispered.
“Shhh, take it easy,” Starsky said softly, trying to hide the desperation in his voice as he attempted to soothe the tall blond, knowing in his heart that very few men survived the kind of wound that Diesel had. “It’s gonna be okay . . . you’re gonna be okay, y’hear me Diesel? You hang on . . .”
“Fuck man!” Sniper snapped angrily, seeing the blood rapidly spreading from the gaping hole on the blond’s abdomen. “You fuckin’ stupid jackass,” Sniper screamed. “Why’d you do that for? It wasn’t supposed to be you . . . fuck!”
Though his senses and reflexes were sluggish from the drug’s withdrawal, the brunet could feel the Beretta digging into his leg from where Diesel had tucked it into the waistband of his jeans. Starsky slowly reached a trembling hand as inconspicuously as he could for the gun, his eyes never leaving the hostile green glare of the redhead.
Cussing more filthy words, Sniper cocked and lifted his shaky gun once more, taking aim at the brunet when the sudden loud blaring of a siren made both men turn to see the barrage of cars coming their way, mars lights flashing red and blue.
Hutch could see the punk holding the shotgun that was pointed at his partner, and he floored the accelerator, fear for his friend made the perspiration drip between his shoulder blades to pool uncomfortably in the middle his back.
It hadn’t been too hard to figure out where Diesel had taken Starsky. A quick call to the department of records and land utilization turned up the address and property that belonged to Harry Kern, a.k.a. Diablo, and soon the location of the well on his property was located. Securing that information, Hutch, the feds and a squadron of police cars made a beeline to the former holdings of the prior president to the ‘Minions.’ To see his wounded partner in imminent danger brought the blond’s anger to the forefront as he raced ever closer the dark haired detective.
Starsky couldn’t believe his eyes. It was Hutch! Hutch had found him! Starsky watched as a huge cloud of dust followed in his partner’s wake as other squad cars raced towards them. The brunet would have smiled at his good fortune, but he knew it wasn’t over yet, as the lunatic waving the shotgun started hollering.
“Fuck!” Sniper screamed, his eyes bugging out at the sight of the cops coming his way. “They ain’t fuckin’ takin’ me alive and they ain’t takin’ you either!” the redhead snarled, turning his green glare upon the brunet as he raised the shotgun up to eye level, taking aim, his finger compressing the trigger . . . only to gasp loudly, the heavy gun slowly falling from his hands, his eyes wide with bewilderment, as a trickle of red ran down the bridge of his broken nose from the tiny hole in his forehead.
Starsky groaned softly, the kick from the Beretta made his side ache and his left hand trembled unsteadily; the sound of the shot was still ringing in his ears, as he lowered the gun, watching Sniper slowly sink to the ground before him. The brunet closed his eyes, feeling sick from knowing that he had killed another human being; even though he realized that he had no other choice in the matter, it didn’t take away the remorse he felt each time he pulled the trigger and took a life.
The soft gasp made the brunet open his eyes once more, looking down into the pale blue eyes that had never left his face. Starsky gently pushed against his other hand once more to impede the flow of blood as the blond groaned softly. “Shh, take it easy, buddy,” the brunet soothed, wincing as the blond biker gritted his teeth against the wave of pain that bombarded his gaping abdomen, vaguely registering the slamming of doors as Hutch and the others rushed over. “Jus’ breath, man . . . jus’ breath . . .” Starsky gasped softly, wanting to throw up as he felt the hot gushing warmth between his bloody fingers.
“Ain’t . . . no use . . .” Diesel gasped, his blue eyes softening at the worried look of distress he saw on the brunet’s face. “Nothin’ . . . you can do . . . shit happens . . . to everyone . . . and just . . . like that . . . life’s gone.”
Starsky focused on the blond’s face which suddenly blurred as tears came to his sapphire eyes, remembering Diesel sharing those exact words in his cover apartment. “You shouldn’t have got in the way. Why’d ya have’ta do that for, huh?” The brunet lifted his arm slightly and wiped his eyes against his sleeve, his hands never leaving the biker’s oozing flesh, even as he felt Hutch kneeling beside him. “You’re gonna make it, ya hear me? Ya hang on!”
The dark haired cop looked at his best friend in the whole world, his haunted cobalt gaze speaking volumes as the blond detective’s eyes softened in understanding, reaching out to gently squeeze his partner’s shoulder in silent support, knowing that the brunet had truly cared about the outlaw leader to the Minions. “We called, buddy . . . an ambulance is on its way,” Hutch said gently.
“Y-you Hutch-inson? Diesel gasped, his pale eyes drifting to the blond cop who knelt beside him. At the detective’s slight nod, the biker grinned only to grit his teeth again as another wave of pain pummeled him. Gasping hoarsely, Diesel clutched his abdomen tightly, feeling his life’s blood spilling out between his fingers. “T-take . . . c-care . . . of my little . . . br-brother . . .”
The biker’s voice was whisper soft and Hutch had to lean over just to hear him. Diesel slowly turned to look once more at the dark haired cop, his pale blue eyes grew distant, a grin slowly tweaking the corners of his lips. “F-freedom . . . n-no r-regrets . . .” Starsky watched as long pale lashes slowly lowered, hiding the sky blue depths from his sight forever as a soft, gentle sigh of surrender was heard from the blond biker, who grew suddenly limp in the arms of the brunet.
The curly haired detective clutched the still and lifeless body tightly against his chest, ignoring the flare of pain that stabbed into his side. “No . . . NO! You fuckin’ hang on, d’ya hear me? Don’t ya fuckin’ die on me, dammit!” Starsky snarled, roughly shaking Diesel in his desperation to make the blond hear him. “Get up! Get the fuck up! Don’ ya fuckin’ give up . . . don’ . . .”
The dark haired cop bowed his head, unable to finish his sentence, as he gently stroked back the golden locks of the biker he held pressed against his chest. Starsky looked up, his eyes were haunted and sad as they connected with his partner’s. “He . . . he . . . saved my life Hutch . . . he saved my life . . .”
Hutch swallowed the lump in his throat, knowing how close he’d come to losing his partner, feeling grateful to the blond biker and the ultimate sacrifice that he’d made. The golden haired detective moved in closer to pull Starsky into his embrace, feeling the tremors that shook his partner’s battered body as the brunet leaned heavily against him. The soft curls under his chin tickled his nose, as he breathed in the familiar, but faint smell of sandalwood. “It’s over buddy . . . it’s all over . . .” Hutch soothed gently, softly. “Let’s go home, huh pal? It’s all over . . .”