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I’d have aches and pains later, but for now I was numb.
The chilled air played with my hair as I lay on my front, propped up on my elbows, eyes on the prize. I’d been here for hours staring at the dark apartment, with not a soul to call it home.
The intel must have been off, but I couldn’t abandon the job. He may be late, but at some point he would have to come home. He had work tomorrow, and his briefcase still sat on the floor by the front door.
My eyes begged for a different venue to gaze upon, so I rolled onto my back and gazed up at the stars for a while. I tried to count them at first, but that only threatened to put me to sleep, so I turned back over.
Eventually, the door handle shifted as the key entered the lock on the other side, and that small movement sent my heart up into my throat.
He was home.
I flexed my fingers, making sure they could still respond to commands in their frozen state, and, as the door opened, I watched him step inside and shirk off his jacket.
My finger tightened on the trigger, anxious to release the bullet, but I had to hold myself back when I saw her.
She waltzed in after him, and I was horrified.
No one could ever know what happened here, and I couldn’t complete the job now with her as a witness.
As they moved further into the apartment, I lay motionless.
Who was this woman? Was she disposable?
I reached down to my belt, and grabbed my phone.
“Jenny, what is taking you so long? I’m freezing down here.”
I had to grit my teeth to stop from shouting at him. “Really Howard? You want to compare the temperature down in your van to up here on this rooftop?”
“Sorry, but seriously, what is taking so long?” Impatience was thick in his voice. He didn’t get the excitement from the hit as much as I did.
Killing made me feel so alive.
“He’s brought a girl home.”
Howard let loose a self-satisfying chuckle. “What was it you said? ‘No Howard, it’s a simple hit, I don’t need your help.’ Well look who wants me to be more than just the driver now.”
It took all of my strength not to hang up on him there and then, but I didn’t want to be reckless. That had ended badly for me before.
“Yes, Howard, you are more than just the driver, congratulations. Now will you please help me ID this girl?”
“Sure thing sweetie, just get her in your sights, and I’ll link up.”
I hated it when he called me sweetie, but right now I didn’t want to waste time on that well rehearsed argument. Instead I placed the phone on the floor, and flicked the switch on my rifle.
I searched the apartment for the girl, and found them settled in the lounge, with a wall of glass being all that separated me from them. Well, that and the street below.
He had his arm wrapped around her, his other sliding up her leg. I knew that I’d have to move fast before they moved even faster into the bedroom.
“I… her… same…” Howard was back on the phone.
I picked it up, and used my shoulder to press it against my ear so that I could keep my hands on the rifle, and the two of them in sight.
“Sorry, Howard, repeat that, please.”
“I said, I have a file on her here. She’s wanted by the same folk who want him, what are the chances?” There was glee in his voice now. He loved the money more than the thrill, so the chance for a two for one deal was his idea of Christmas.
“Gotcha. Be down in 5. Be ready to move.”
I could hear him clap his hands together like a child as I hung up.
I took aim, and felt the adrenaline pump through my veins, as I replaced my finger over the trigger.
I sang eeny meeny miny mo in my head as I picked, then realised that, of course, it’s always ladies first.
I drank it all in.
The sound of broken glass, the thud as she fell to the floor, and his short-lived yelp as he followed her.
I just felt something so right, doing the wrong thing.