[ Pobierz całość w formacie PDF ]
.He’s your rogue cop.If I’d had any idea what was going on under my nose, I would’ve done something about it, but instead of coming to me – ”“Is that your story? That’s why you’re here? You’re holding a gun on me to tell me you didn’t do it? Get a lawyer then and let’s go to court.I’d love to see you try to wiggle out of this.”He tries to laugh, but it comes out as more of a hiss.“He stitched me up good, him and you.There’s nothing a lawyer can do.” His voice trails off, like even he’s losing confidence in the innocence ploy.Whatever his reason for being here, it’s not to enter a plea.“And I was almost out, March.All you had to do was wait and I would’ve handed over my badge and gone into retirement.Nobody had to die.”“Tell that to the girl.”“We tried to save that girl,” he sniffs.“That’s the crazy thing.It was all running fine until we put the white hat on.”The tactical light lowers a bit more.I can almost see him, at least that’s what I tell myself.My body breaks out in a cold sweat, my hands tremble, my thoughts race.Do I stand here and banter until he decides to pull the trigger, or do I draw, risking an early demise? There’s a chance, there’s always a chance, that he’ll miss and I won’t.Or I’ll be wounded but still able to get off a shot.If the roles were reversed, though, I wouldn’t fancy the other guy’s chances.“I have to tell you,” he says, his voice different, talking more to himself than me, “a turn of events like this, it’s enough to make you think.As long as we did our thing, you wouldn’t believe how easy it was.Everything went like clockwork.Believe me, we’re only losing the war on drugs because we aren’t fighting it, not on their level anyway.It was beautiful.Candy from a baby.But the moment we try to be the good guys, it all blows up.I should have left her there.I knew that.We should have stuck to our thing.We hadn’t planned for that, so we should’ve walked away.But we didn’t.Instead, we went in there, guns blazing, like the cavalry coming to the rescue, and that one.pure.instinct, that’s what destroyed us.”The room grows quiet.In a moment, wondering where I am, Charlotte will venture outside.She’ll call up the stairs, or even ascend them, and I’m not going to let that happen.My hand is damp.I wipe it against my pant leg.I don’t want anything to ruin my move, no glitch in the cycle of muscle memory, my hand flashing, pistoning forward, firing blindly into the light.“March,” he says.“Don’t be stupid.”I relax my hand, biding my time.“I’m not here to punch your ticket, man.Not yet.It’ll happen one day, believe me.When you least expect it.Blah, blah, blah – you know the speech.But I’ll do it now if you want, and I’ll go down there and put a bullet in your wife, too.It’s your call.”“Then why are you here?” I ask.“Good question.” He laughs dryly.“Call it pride.Arrogance, maybe.But I wanted you to know I could do it.I wanted you to know you didn’t win.Trust me, March, I’m gonna land on my feet.I have other irons in the fire, my friend.There are people in this world who will pay gladly for the kind of skills I have to offer.You got lucky, sure, but it wasn’t your great detective work that brought me down.”“I realize that.It was your own people, Reg.Thomson’s conscience.Salazar keeping that gun around to use against you.”“No,” he says, the light bobbing.“It wasn’t that.It wasn’t you.It was fate.”Before he finishes, the light disappears, leaving a ghost image behind on my retinas.I hear him moving.I shuffle backward, deep into the kitchen, drawing my pistol as I slip on the linoleum floor.Steadying myself, I raise the muzzle, but there’s nothing but darkness to focus on.My vision adjusts and I see the lighter darkness of the open door.I edge forward, gun at the ready, peering around the doorframe and down the stairs.The back door of the house, illuminated by a mosquito-swarmed bulb, is shut tight.Outside the cone of golden lamplight, nothing stirs.I edge my way down, puzzling over the rapid exit.The stairs creak under me.When Keller left, I didn’t even hear the descending footfalls.Wait a second.Back in the apartment, I switch on the overhead light.The bedroom door stands open, the tarp flapping gently in the night breeze [ Pobierz całość w formacie PDF ]