All In A Days Work | By: James Carney | | Category: Short Story - Adventure Bookmark and Share

All In A Days Work

Lurking in the bushes lies a tall dark figure dressed in all black. Watching, waiting. Stalking in the shadows. The sombre unlit sky hides everything around him. A black sheet is cast over the world. He is looking for something, someone. He looks up at a large house opposite where he hides and sees a small window. The light is shining bright in this room. He looks closer into the room as his eyes fix on a man in there. He stares for a while and then look at the house. On further inspection, he sees two stocky looking guards, guarding the door to the large house. There is a wall below the window where the light is coming from. He opened his backpack, placing in his binoculars and revealing the tools of his trade.
The large house looks fully alarmed. And rightfully so, this man is one of the most influencial and richest figures this country has ever seen. He went from bush to bush, silently moving toward the target with the stealth that only he possessed. He only carried one weapon that hung from his waist. Soft shoes and a silent step made him silent and deadly. His dark clothing and years of training in the military gave him a tactical advantage in battle. The target usually didn't even know they were being hunted until it was too late.
He made his way silently to the wall, sneaking past the guards. He was practically invisible to them. He climbed up the wall and landed on the other side, dusting and smartening himself up, after all he was a professional on a job.
He could see a ray of light coming from the man’s bedroom door and peeped inside. He was still awake, he was humming a catchy tune. He strafed along the wall to the edge of the door and listened to the sounds coming from the other side. He gently opened the door further and looked in through the open space. He would wait until he was in bed and the lights were out.
He didn't have to wait long. The light from the bedroom went out and he heard the rustling of sheets as the man fell asleep. He hid in the shadows for a bit longer and then made his move. He could see the shadow of the man lying on the bed with his back to him. He reached into his backpack and took out a cable with a small wooden handle on each end. He inserted the cable between his fingers and slinked along the carpeted floor toward the bed.
The cheese wire found its place around the mans neck and tightened with little effort, the wire took hold of his throat with a tight grip and strangled the life out of him. He checked the man to see if he was dead. He was and the assassin escaped down the wall he came from and out of the large garden to his waiting getaway car down the street. He drove away with a smile. Another night's work complete, he could now make his way home and have a drink and relax.
He opened the door to his room with a Beretta 9mm in his hand. He checked the room for intruders. Nothing. He slipped the Beretta back into its holster beneath his arm and flipped the light switch on. He bolted the door behind him and threw his keys onto the table that sat next to him. He threw his feet onto the coffee table and poured a drink of whiskey. As he fell asleep, he remembered the words that his mentor told him. That the hunter can become the hunted.
He woke up, not in his bed but in a cellar somewhere in the middle of nowhere as far as he knew. He did not know where he was or what he was doing here. He felt the presence of someone else in the room. There was someone there. He just felt drowsy and fell asleep.
I had just woke up, in my bed. I can hear noises. Banging. Running up the stairs. I reach for my gun and leap out of bed. I back up against the wall and creep to the door. As I slowly creep to the top of the stairs I see two men, dressed smartly in a suit. Carrying a gun. They are here to kill me. As I creeped down the stairs, I felt a sharp pain in my back and then hit the floor.
The guard pulled off his blindfold; he was in the room again. He looked around and noticed that the man that just pulled off his blindfold was in fact the man that was in the house. He looked around him and noticed two other men. One he recognised, one he did not. There was only one thought going thorough his mind now, that was to escape, as a natural hunter, his basic instinct was to find a way out. He just sat there as the men left. There were pipes hanging from the ceilings like a maze around the room, water dripping at his feet. There were four dark, mouldy walls. The room smelt mouldy and damp. He listened with his ears that where trained to hear conversations through walls, he fine-tuned like a microphone into the conversation next door.
‘’What do we do with him Tony,’’ the voice was gruff sounding ‘‘do we kill him.’’
‘’We take him to the boss, he will deal with this.’’ Tony had a high-pitched voice.
‘’We shouldn’t move him really should we.’’
‘’We are incharge of him Mike, we take him to the boss. Call Donny out.’’
Tony called Donny as he came running in. Donny was well built. Unlike Tony and
Mike. Tony was rather plump and small, whereas Mike was a tall and skinny figure.
‘’Donny get the truck out, where moving him.’’
Anthony sat down and waited for the men to come and pick him up. Tony, the stocky man came in and put back on his blindfold and taped up his mouth. Mike came in and they carried him off to the back of the truck. Anthony heard the truck door closing and sat in the back. Donny drove and Tony stayed in the back with him. Tony took off his blindfold and at this point Anthony was confident of escape. He was a well trained predator in the battle field and had a distinctive advantage in tactical knowledge and combat. He crouched down like a cat stalking a bird, waiting to pounce on its prey, as the truck hit a sharp turn he pounced and devoured his mark. Stealing the keys from the victims body he unlocked the truck and bolted down the street to safety. I had to find out who these men where. I had to find out what they wanted with me and who the boss was. Making his way home he phoned his boss.
‘’Boss, I was just captured.’’
‘’Yes, I know, I was expecting you to call, did you deal with your intended mark.’’
‘’Yes, the old man is no more.’’
‘’Get back home, there is a package waiting for you, it is of your next target, we will talk later.’’ Anthony made his way home and found the package, an envelope was waiting for him on the floor inside the door to his room. He picked it up and moved to the kitchen to make something to eat. He opened the envelope and browsed through the contents. There was the usual, photographs of the targets home, cars, guards, servants. But this one did not contain a picture of the intended victim, just a description of what he was thought to look like. This was odd and he did not want to take on the contract at first, but he shrugged it off, Anthony was scared of no man. After all he was a professional.
The target was a wealthy old man. He was richer than the previous target and all the targets he has taken care on, in fact. No wonder someone was willing to pay such a high price to kill this man. He could see the hit was purely a professional business decision and he liked that. The information packet was thorough. It even had a map of his house and times when he could be found there. He would go look himself as he always worked alone. And he was the best. Anthony stalked the target for the following month and found no change in his daily schedule. Not much daytime activity, mostly relaxing by the pool. The old man seemed to do all of his business at night and at his home. He never left the safety of his fortress. There were guards carrying submachine guns. Even some of the servants were carrying handguns beneath their uniforms. Solid iron gates and a perimeter fence surrounded the house. Anthony smiled to himself. Getting in would be easy and a good assassin always leaves the way he came out.
The next day late into the night, he climbed up a small wall on the far side of the house near the garage. He waited for the guard to pass his post and climbed the fence with the ability of a cat. Quickly he moved to the garage and was through the door in a flash. From the garage he could access any part of the house virtually undetected. He silently, stealthily sneaked to the far end of the garage and easily found the door that lead to the kitchen. He opened the door quietly and heard nothing coming from the kitchen. No activity at this time of night. It was almost too easy. He began to doubt the integrity of his boss, paying him such a high bounty for such an easy target.
He opened the door and moved into the shadows. There was no one around at all. Most of the servants had gone home for the evening, except for a few guards roaming the ground level. From shadow to shadow, darkness to darkness, cover to cover he moved closer to the stairs. He waited breathlessly in a shadow as a guard approached. The guard passed right by him without noticing him and continued past. Anthony sighed silently and climbed the stairs closer to his mark. The carpeted stairs muffled his already quiet steps making his trip up the stairs undetectable.
At the top of the stairs he sneaked into another shadow as a noise startled him momentarily. It was the old man shuffling towards his bedroom. He looked frail and on his last legs, but still had a swagger in his step. The old man stopped for a second and seemed to look directly into Anthony’s eyes. He froze, becoming a part of the darkness he had now become. His eyes looked to flash at Anthony. He was scared. For the first time in his career he was scared of a man. If the old man noticed him he might have to kill him right there and shoot his way out in which case he would have to consider the hit a failure, after all he was a proffesional and wanted to escape the way he came in, undetected.
The old man opened the door and began humming a tune. Anthony remembered the tune. It was the same catchy tune his mark a month previous had been humming to himself before he shut him up. Yet again he smiled. He thought and waited for the right moment to advance.
He couldn't wait any longer. His instructions were to make it as bloody a death as he could. Anthony took out a long knife. He moved toward the bedroom door and waited outside, listening for any movement. He could hear the old man still humming the tune. He was still awake, nevermind, now had to be the time.
Anthony peeked around the door and saw the old man sitting at a desk writing something in a notebook. The room was dark, but Anthony could tell it was furnished with the finest antiques money could buy. The floor was wooden, which would probably creak under his feet, he would have to move fast. He quickly and quietly moved towards the old man. A floor board creaked beneath his foot as he was about to wrap his hand around the old mans mouth to silence his screams of pain and ram the knife into his back and through his heart, but he was gone.
Anthony turned in a full circle and there the old man was standing in front of him smiling. "Nice try, Anthony?" how did he know my name. Anthony was in shock. How could the old man move so quickly? Without thinking he sent the knife toward the old mans heart like a snake striking its prey. He felt what he thought was a sledge hammer on his left shoulder that sent him flying across the room and into a table that was so heavy it barely moved. Nothing was going through his mind.
"Get up," the old man said. "Give it another try. I'm sure someone paid you good money to kill me. Let's not disappoint them with such a weak effort, they told me you were the best" he said.
Anthony knew time was now working against him, but if he didn't take out his mark now he would not only lose the money, but his life was in danger for the first time. Anthony sent the knife flying toward the old mans chest. Let's see him dodge that, he thought to himself, but the knife flew past the old man and into the wall behind him as though he was never there. Anthony looked at the knife stuck in the wall and before he could react the old man had him by the throat. He effortlessly raised Anthony into the air with an arm that looked as though it could barely raise itself let alone Anthony.
He felt himself losing consciousness from the choke hold. Is this the way he would die? In the grip of an old frail man? He tried one last desperate attack. He reached into his pocket and took out a his Beretta he kept for emergencyies.
When he awoke a few minutes later he found himself bound in a chair with rope. The old man stood over him staring at Anthony’s Beretta. ‘’You tried to kill me with that one, eh?’’ he said and laughed. ‘’ must admit you're the best one yet. No one else has ever gotten that close to me before,’’ he said impressed. ‘’Although I did see you in the hall standing in the shadows,’’ he said shaking his head. ‘’But never the less, you did manage to touch me and for that I might just let you live,’’ he said stepping back from Anthony to look at his reaction. He did not have one.
‘’Why don't you just kill me and get it over with,’’ Anthony said. ‘’I can't tell you anything. I don't know who wanted you killed. All I know is how much they were willing to pay and that they always pay, I am just a proffesional like you, just doing my job.’’
‘’I know who hired you, Anthony’’ he said again waiting for his reaction to hearing his name. Anthony lost a bit of his confidence and looked at the old man with an inquizetive look in his eyes.
’’You want to know who, don't you? For the first time in your career, you want to know.’’
Anthony stared into the old mans eyes and said, ‘’Yes. I want to know, but I also want to know how you were able to avoid my attack. Since I am obviously going to die here tonight, at least tell me that.’’
The old man laughed and said, ‘’I will give you both answers in one,’’ the old man laughed, ‘’I hired you, Anthony. I hired you to kill me, or should I say to kill you. People have been trying to kill me for thousands of years and failed each time. You were the greatest challenge I have had, a paid professional assassin. You see, I am a vampire, Anthony. That is why I move so quickly. That is why my wounds heal instantly. That is why you could not kill me, looks like it is time for you to die and for my supper. The vampire bit into Anthony’s neck and sucked the life out of him.
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