Note from the author:
I want to begin by saying that this is by no means a perfect manuscript. Obviously, it needs a lot of work, but it's here only as a rough draft and I am hoping to improve it in the future. There are some graphic things in this so beware, and I hope I do not offend anyone by some of the contents of this story. Other than that I hope it is somewhat entertaining and that you enjoy
The smell took over the whole house, creeping into even the cleanest parts of the house and sinking into the wall and staining the air with its putrid essence. To the untrained nose, it would have smelled like rotting food or some poor animal that had gotten stuck in a crumbling wall and died, its body rotting away as all things do when they die. But the truth is the smell had a much darker origin. It was a mixture of war, poverty, and death. The bodies of which haven’t been discovered and probably never would.
It was the smell of death, yes, but it was also a smell that warned the explorer to beware of what was to come because not everyone can stomach the things that men do to defend themselves. If you rounded the wall and looked into the kitchen, you would find the smell. Two bodies sat upright in their separate chairs, blood spraying the wall behind them, the two of them tied to their chairs and the third with three-quarters of its head missing, laying on the ground at their feet a 22 pistol clutched in its hands. The victim’s heads were missing, for the most part, only a little remaining on the decaying clump that really couldn’t be a body anymore. Maggots swarmed on them, feeding off the misery and pain that was the outcome of the scene. The place would be a perfect place to hide from the death outside the four walls if you could get around the smell and bodies.
Now we introduce our main character, a thief and robber but not quite a murder but more of a protector of those that couldn’t defend themselves when the war began. He was given a proper Christian name at birth but over the years due to the circumstances of life thrown in front of him, and the type of things that he did to earn him the name Ghost. It was a stupid name, one that he did not appreciate and that he tried to avoid if he could help it, but for the most part, no matter what was said to the people that called him that, they continued to and after a while, he gave up.
The Ghost was a rigid man. One that did not trust easily. Probably due to the 15 years he spent in the Marines as a guardian angel (sniper). He usually tried to avoid confrontations with people that he didn’t like or people in general who didn’t respect him. But since the start of the wars, he had become known and fought his way through the masses of people that tried to kill him daily. People figured that if they got him off the streets, there would be more of a market for killings and crimes. Like a cop among thieves of the road and most, although not all, would have preferred him not to be a problem.
He usually didn’t bother those that did not need to be, and in general, he often stuck to himself though on occasion he could be seen; he talked to no one and tried to be as inconspicuous as possible. But when it came to his work, he was serious and never let anything get in his way.
It had been a couple of hours since he had reported the bodies. Not that the police would or could do much about them, but he figured that getting them out of the way was the best thing to do. As mean as it sounds, they were not a priority at this point; they were just pawns in a much bigger game. He didn’t have the time to avenge some small-town family that had put themselves in the way of harm by agreeing to do business with the Croux. Anyone worth their salt knew better than to make deals with them, and the outcome was a clear warning to others that when you double-cross the Croux, you’ll probably never see that beautiful dream you had in mind when you first agreed to work with them. No. He needed to find the smuggled drugs hidden in the house, the only witness to the reason behind the death of the trio, and the only reason he was here. It sounds cliche, but in reality, if the chemical did it end up in the wrong hands, it could very likely cause a chain reaction through the states and cause more problems for the Association and him. When something happens in the base, they always send him out to fix the problem. To them, he was just a tool, and at any time, they figured that if he fails, they’ll just get another monkey to help. But what they didn’t know was that it wasn’t going to be as easy as they thought to get rid of him. He had a knack for surviving, even under the most complex, and in the most challenging situations, he somehow always managed to live and make it through. Yes, it was true that he had been shot more than a half a dozen times and had more than a few stab wounds and a disfigured face from a fire a few years back in Iraq, but that hadn’t stopped him, and it wasn’t now.