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Con City - Excerpt Three

Mister Jake was slowly driving in the traffic in Downtown Con City. 80s music was blasting from his car stereo at maximum volume. He was trying hard to relax. He'd been stuck in the traffic for far too long. Once more he noted to himself how much he hated Con City.

As he drove on towards his destination, Jake paused the CD player of his car stereo and turned on the radio. He wanted to hear the weather report. It looked like it would rain soon.

`And now for the weather,' the newscaster on the radio said. Jake's timing was impeccable, as always. `The skies are sunny above Con City although some clouds have...'

The newscaster paused for a while, then made an announcement.

`Ladies and gentlemen, this news just came in. A violent explosion shook the suburbs of South Side Con City earlier today just before noon and claimed the life of an as yet unidentified young man. Interviewed locals described the explosion as a brilliant display of fireworks rarely seen in the area and took the opportunity to express their grievances towards the City Council for not organizing more fireworks in the suburbs. Police were unavailable for comment as to the cause of the explosion.'

Jake smiled and nodded to the radio.

`You're welcome, people, you're very welcome,' he said. He listened to the weather report, then he waited for the music to start playing. It was a shitty modern day song. He sighed, turned off the radio, and turned the CD player back on.

A few minutes later he finally arrived at his destination, a high-rise apartment complex near the edge of Downtown Con City. Jake parked the car, got out, and entered the building. Inside he was greeted by a security guard behind a desk beside the elevator.

`Can I help you, sir?' the security guard asked.

`No,' Jake said, and he drew his gun. The security guard reached for his own, but before he could have raised it, Jake shot him right between the eyes. As the security guard collapsed behind the desk, Jake holstered the Horizon and called the elevator. He rode the elevator up to the seventh floor. He walked over to door number 703 and rang the doorbell. A while later the door was opened. He was greeted by a young woman in a green dress.

`Can I help you?' she asked.

`Yes. My name is Mister Jake. I'm looking for Joanna Bennett. I was told that I might find her here. Could I see her please?'

The woman looked at her suspiciously.

`Why? What do you want from her?'

`I'm a friend of her boss. The poor man has been murdered, and I'd like to talk to her about it. I'm trying to find the killer.'

The woman looked him up and down, thinking. She thought Jake looked like the sort that would go vigilante if his friend was murdered. She shrugged.

`You missed her. She left in the morning,' she said.

`Did she say where she was going?'

The woman sighed and leaned out the door. She looked to the left, then to the right. Satisfied that she saw no one, she called Jake in.

`Come inside, it's a long story,' she said.

`Thank you,' Jake said as he entered the apartment.

`I'm Annie,' the woman said as she led him into the living room.

`Pleasure to make your acquaintance, Annie,' Jake replied, smiling.

`Would you like a coffee?'

`Yes, thank you.'

`Milk or sugar?'

`Lots of both,' Jake said.

`Lots of both,' Annie repeated, and she walked into the kitchen.

Jake drew his gun and started thinking. He had not anticipated that this friend of Joanna's would turn out to be a woman. Jake did not like killing women, especially not women who brought him coffee. Of course, contracts were an exception, as was any instance of self defense. But he didn't want to kill \textit{this} woman. Yet he knew that he should tie all loose ends.

He drew his knife as well and looked at the two weapons in his hand. He carefully contemplated which weapon to use, until eventually he came to a satisfactory conclusion and holstered his pistol. He took the knife in his right hand and hid it behind his back just before Annie came into the living room with his coffee. He smiled at her warmly.

`Here you go. Have a seat,' she said.

`Thank you,' Jake said. He took the coffee with his left hand and sat down on the sofa. He carefully put the knife down behind his back and started stirring the coffee with the spoon.

*

For more, please proceed to the novel Con City.


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