The final chapter of MESSAGE ON A WINDSHIELD can be found on BGbowers blog: bgbowers We had fun writing it together. Hope you enjoyed reading it. Thank you.
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BG bowers and I are writing this story together. For all even numbered chapters please go to her blog: bgbowers Thank you.
“I loved my father, you know.”
“I know,” said Gray. “It was supposed to be that way.”
“Jasper said that he was in the business.”
“He was. He just didn’t know it.”
“What do you mean?”
“When he went on business trips, the trips were often set up by us, with your mother’s help, of course. Your father didn’t know he was working with us.”
“Wow. My mom was not the mom I thought she was,” I said, rubbing my fact with my hands. “Life is an illusion and so are the people you think you know.”
“It’s not her fault,” said Gray, softly.
“Sure it is,” I said. “Lying to my father about his own child. That didn’t have anything to do with
saving the world.”
“I won’t say that I’m sorry.”
“Right,” I said, taking a deep breath. “Who do we kill next?”
“Karr was working behind Martha’s back. He had a crew of his own. He was planning on overthrowing Martha and her organization within the year. He was selling arms to countries who would like to see us,” Gray hesitated and looked at the ceiling. “Let’s just say they would like to see this country fall to it’s knees.”
“Like I said, point me in the right direction and tell me who to kill.”
“The guy working under Karr is Franklin Randolph. He’s a well known lawyer with aspirations of greatness. He would like to king of his own country. Karr was trying to get him one. He’s well protected and well liked. He gives money to charity and has his picture taken with babies. He’s into prostitution, gambling and drugs, but no one has been able to touch him.”
“Does he have a family?”
“Yes. Married to his college sweetheart, he has two boys and a girl.”
“Is he cheating on his wife?”
“Don’t tell me it’s with his secretary,” I pleaded.
“With his secretary and with the woman who ran his campaign.”
“That’s our door in.”
Gray grinned. “I thought you might say that.”
“Look. I’m not sure how I feel about you yet, but if you really are my sperm donor, I think I have the right to know your first name.”
“That’s as close as I can get to acknowledging you at the moment.”
“My name is Clarence.”
“I’ll keep calling you Gray.”
“I would appreciate that.”
“I have to know who killed Jasper.”
“We have people on it. As soon as they have anything for us they will let us know.”
“I hope it’s soon.”
“So do I.”
“Who ever did it is mine. Agreed?”
“Now let’s talk about how we are going to make Mr. Randolph’s life as unpleasant as possible.”
BGbowers and I are writing this story together. For all even chapters please go to her blog: bgbowers
“Talk to me,” said the Gray Man.
I sat there, picturing my brother’s broken body. Seeing the grin on Ruby’s face, telling me that I was next. “I need to train.”
“Agree” he nodded. “Home,” he said, to the driver.
I changed my clothes as soon as we arrived and spent every waking moment for the next three weeks feeding my rage and training non-stop. My body was stronger and faster, my anger, sharper and more focused. I used a picture of Karr’s face for target practice and Martha’s likeness was taped to my punching bag. Every night Gray Man and I went over our plans. Plans to blow up their headquarters, plans to kill them all, plans for revenge. That’s what kept me going. That’s what allowed me to stay on task…revenge.
“I think we’re ready,” I said, over breakfast. “Let’s do this tonight. We know they will be together in the meeting room of their new building. Karr is mine. I’ll try for Martha but if you get to her first, do it. Once they’re dead, we blow the building.”
“I’m sorry about Jasper,” said the Gray Man, looking away. “He was a good man.”
“Tonight is FOR Jasper.”
“They’ll be ready for us.”
“That’s why this plan is so perfect,” I said, smiling. “They will be ready for us, after all, it’s Martha’s birthday but they will expect us to talk and play their little games. They won’t ever expect us to come in and just drop them.”
The Gray Man nodded. “William will take out Billy and Conrad, while you and I get the others.
“I can’t wait. I love parties,” I said, grinning. “Especially, when they’re somewhat of surprise.”
“At eight o’clock that night the gliders dropped us onto the roof of Martha’s new digs. She was holed up in a dirty looking warehouse. We had studied the floor plan until every detail was etched clearly into our minds. We also had a man on the ground who had been in and out of the place on a daily basis.
The ground crew had taken out the exterior guards and set the C4 to blow in forty-five minutes. Gray Man and I repelled down the building and removed the glass in the small window one floor up from the meeting room. We had already taken the cameras off line so there was no chance that we would be seen. We checked our camera feed. They were all there. Karr was at the one end of the table and Martha was sitting directly across form him, smiling at her birthday cake. I nodded to Gray Man. He held up his thumb. He would take Martha and I would Kill Karr. I smiled at Gray Man and he smiled back as I pulled open the doors.
“Ah,” said Karr. “We were expect….”
I blew his head off and I heard Martha gasp, just before she took her last breath. The others, gathered around the table, were terrified. “Hey,” I said. “You picked the wrong side. I realize that you might not have known that…hell, I DIDN’T even know that until a a couple of months ago.” The man on one end of the table smiled and it was the last thing he ever did. The gunshot echoed through the large room and I shook my head. “As I was saying, before I was so rudely interrupted by your co-conspirator’s death, I understand that you may have been misled but after looking through your files, I find that there was zero chance that you were clueless so, goodnight, and goodbye,” I said, as Gray Man and I finished the job. We had seven minutes to get out of the building so we headed for the door. We had copies of everything we needed, thanks to the mole who, posing as a client, was able to access their files. No need to tarry.
The building blew on schedule. “I wish I had thought to bring marshmallows,” I said wistfully
“I haven’t had a good marshmallow in years,” said Gray Man. “You know this isn’t over don’t you?”
“Yes, but I had a great time tonight,” I said happily. “We should go out together more often.”
“I always hate those movies where people stand around talking to the bad guys so that they can get away.”
“Me too. That’s why this plan was brilliant. Everyone wants to explain how clever he or she is and they never think that you don’t really want to hear what they have to say.”
“I’m hungry,” said Gray Man.
“By all means.”
“Can I wear your fedora?”
“Let’s get a couple orders of fries too, okay?”
“Whatever you say.”
BG bowers and I are writing this story together. For all even numbered chapters please go to her blog: bgbowers thank you.
I sipped my drink and walked next to the stranger I had picked up when I arrived. As we strolled along, I spent my time looking over my surroundings, as well as the people milling around. I couldn’t believe the low level of security they had at this party but I’m sure they weren’t expecting any trouble, it was, after all, just a book signing, what could possibly go wrong? I laughed at their stupidity.
“What’s so funny?”
“Oh, nothing really,” I said, smiling. “Just thinking of something someone said earlier today.”
“My name is Brad, by the way.”
“Nice to meet you Brad. People call me Blue.”
“As in sad?”
“No, that’s my name.”
“Have you read any of Ruby’s books?”
“A few,” I said.
“I’ve read all of them. They seem so real, so full of detail.”
“A little too real, if you ask me,” I said, at the exact moment the music stopped.
“She’ll be here soon,” said Brad, grinning excitedly.
“You’re a real fan boy aren’t you,” I said, feeling for my blade.
“I am,” he said blushing.
Ruby, wearing a long, matronly, green dress that clashed with her sallow skin, walked in. Her hair was pulled back into a severe bun but she was smiling and waving to her fans. I turned away. I wanted to surprise her.
“She looks great, doesn’t she,” said Brad breathlessly.
“Yeah, great,” I murmured, watching Ruby take her place behind the podium.
“Dearest friends and readers,” she said, holding out her arms, as if to embrace the people standing in front of her. “It’s such an honor to be here with all of you, my beloved readers.”
I tried not to gag, but was only partially successful.
“Are you alright?” asked Brad, a concerned look on his face.
“Fine, thank you.”
“I am going to read portions of my latest mystery, WHY SO BLUE, MR. GRAY, and then I will be delighted to sign each and every book for those of you who would like to purchase one.
Applause and screams tore from the collective throat of the crowd and bounced off the walls. “Enjoy this night Ruby, it’s the last one you’re going to see,” I whispered. And then, just like that, she started to read the details from my last job.
Eventually the crowd began to dwindle. Ruby was getting tired but she continued to smile and sign books. She still hadn’t seen me. I walked around the room until it emptied out enough to suit me. Then I slowly came up behind her and leaned over her shoulder. “This is for my mom and dad,” I whispered, plunging the blade deep between her ribs.
Ruby let out a gurgle, smiled and said, “You’re next on the list, bitch.”
By the time I reached the front door I could hear people screaming. The Gray Man was waiting, his head still bandaged from the accident. “Nice fedora,” I said. He sighed and held out his hand.
“How’d it go?” he asked.
“Listen,” I said, sliding into the car.
He paused a moment, then smiled. “Ah,” he chuckled. “Nothing like a job well done to turn an average evening into a night to remember.”
This is a team effort please go to bgbowers for even numbered chapters. Thank you.
“Time to talk?” I snarled. “I should shoot you and get it over with.”
“Is that any way for a sister to talk to her brother?” said Jasper, grinning.
“Most of the time I thought you were dead.”
“Obviously you were wrong.”
“Obviously,” I said. “Why did you disappear?”
“The work demanded it and I didn’t want to get you involved. I can see that that was a mistake.”
I just laughed. “So have we been working against each other?”
“Martha is the bad guy?”
“She is. She killed our parents.”
I couldn’t speak. My heart was suddenly tap dancing in my chest and I could feel my nails cutting into the palms of my hands. “What?”
“You were already with them when I went looking for you. I wanted to get you out but you had the chip implant and no matter what I did, they got to you before I did.”
“Simple really. Old school,” said Jasper, looking down. “They rigged their car, hit them from behind then pushed them off a mountain. You knew the last part, just not the first. You were easy to get after their death. You were a young girl, filled with rage and looking for an outlet. They knew that and took you in. I was out of the country and….”
“Were you working with mom and dad?”
“Why was I left out?” I whispered.
“We thought you were too young. We were going to wait another year or two and then bring you in.”
“What do you do exactly?”
“We try to stop Martha and her people from trying to take over governments. We try to stop wars before they start. We….”
“Not very successful are you.”
“You’d be surprised,” he said, running his fingers through his thick, blond hair. “We have stopped wars and saved many lives.”
“Do you work for the government?”
“Who is the Gray Man?”
“One of our agents. He was assigned to grab you when he could.”
“He looks like Uncle Timothy.”
“I guess he does, a little,” said Jasper.
“I like his fedora.”
“Did you tell him that?”
“I wish I could have been there,” said Jasper, smiling broadly.
“So when do I go to work?”
“Whenever you’re ready.”
“I know their secrets.”
“Baby sister, I love you.”
“Yeah, yeah, too little too late, you jerk,” I said, smiling at him. “Enough talk. Let’s get busy and take the bastards down.”
I ran until I got to the trees at the end of the estate. I knew I had little time. Once they found out I was gone they would be after me, dogs and all. I hit the wall running, grabbed onto the thick, ropy, vines and hauled myself to the top. I trotted along until I saw a good landing spot then jumped and rolled. I started running as soon as my feet were under me. The road was straight ahead.
I didn’t see The Gray man until he stepped in front of me. I held up my gun and aimed at his chest. “Hurry,” he said, looking at me. “And put the gun away, we don’t have time for games. Now come on.”
“I’m not going anywhere with you,” I said, keeping the gun steady.
“Fine,” he said, walking away. “Stay here and die. Your choice.”
“Who are you?” I asked. But he just kept walking. I growled, but it was dark and I hurried to catch up. “Who are you?” I asked again. Memories of his face looking down on me in the alley, floated to the forefront of my mind.
“I’m someone who can save your life,” he said, never turning his head. “I knew your brother. Now be quiet. We can talk later.”
As soon as we got to the road a car pulled up in front of us. The door opened and we got in. “Go,” said the Gray Man, quickly. “Now.” The car took off and I turned to look at him.
“Please take off your fedora.”
“It’s a hat, not a fedora.”
“Looks like a fedora to me,” I said. “Will you take it off, please.”
He sighed loudly, then removed his hat.
“Okay, it is totally a fedora,” I said touching the brim. “What is going on?”
“They were going to kill you,” he said. “I couldn’t let them do that. I promised your brother. And the things you think I’ve done, were done by Martha and her goon squad.”
“Yes, all Martha but with your help, of course,” said the Gray Man. “Martha has to be eliminated. Karr too.”
“Why should I believe you?” I said, pushing myself up against the door, leaning against the knife strapped to my back.
“Because your brother and I were….”
“My brother was a librarian why would he need a partner?”
He laughed then. A relaxed and true laugh. “A librarian,” he gasped. “That’s what he told you?”
“He used to bring books home all the time.”
“He was NOT a librarian,” said the Gray man.
“What was he?”
“He was the head of an elite troop of…..” A shot rang out and the Gray Man flew forward as car swerved hard to the right.
Message on a Windshield – Part I (written by Rethinking LIfe)
Message on a Windshield – Part II (written by bgbowers)
Message on a Windshield – Part III (written by Rethinking Life)
Message on a Windshield – Part IV (written by bgbowers)
Message on a Windshield – Part V (written by Rethinking Life)
Message on a Windshield – Part VI (written by bgbowers)
Message on a Windshield – Part VII (written by Rethinking Life)
Message on a Windshield – Part VIII (written by bgbowers)
Message on a Windshield – Part IX (written by Rethinking Life)
I stole the above from bgbowers because she knows how to use a computer and I don’t. Now you can find the even numbered chapters on her blog by hitting her name above.
Every other episode in this tag team written story is by bgbowers. I am the odd numbered chapters and she is writing the even numbered chapters. Please go to her blog site for those chapters. Thank you.
I rubbed my wrist. Memories were coming back and the latest one caused me to clench my jaw. I saw the Gray Man bending close to me, felt him whispering into my ear. I tried to hear his words but ended up shaking my head in frustration. I took a deep breath and, knowing that it was important to remember, closed my eyes and tried again. I saw him slam his foot down onto my wrist. His face was crystal clear but as I looked up at him, all I saw was sadness and pain. Then he was bending down again and I heard him say, “Don’t let them fix your chip Danaë. You can’t think clearly when the chip is functioning. To know the truth, you must deactivate the chip. I will wait for you.” And then he was gone.
“What’s wrong,” asked Karr, entering the room. “You look like you’ve seen a ghost.”
“It’s nothing. Just trying to remember things,” I said taking the drink from his hands.
“Anything in particular?”
“Don’t worry, it will all come back to you.”
“It will. Unless you would rather have me forget what happened.”
“Why would I want that?”
“Just thinking out loud,” I said smiling. “Ruby thinks she’s getting close to finding Gray Man.
“Good,” said Karr, knocking back the rest of his drink. “I’m tired of sitting around. Do you want to go to the shooting range?”
“I’ll meet you downstairs in fifteen minutes.”
“Fifteen minutes,” said Karr, smiling at her.
The chips are implanted when an agent is ready to take to the field. With the chips, if something happens to an agent, the agent can be recovered. But what if there really is more to it than that, I thought. Things suddenly aren’t as cut and dried as they usually are. I made a mental note to visit the Mechanic. I also started thinking about how easy it would be to take the chip out of my wrist. No big deal, one slit with a knife and I could pop it out in no time. I looked at my wrist and smiled. No time at all.
As I walked to the armory I saw the Gray Man’s face in my mind. His eyes looked familiar. I stopped walking. Why was I thinking about his eyes, instead of twenty different ways to kill him?
“You ready?” asked Karr, stepping into the hallway.
“Yes. I’m ready, I answered, doubt clinging to me like a soft mist.
Again, this is a tag-team effort. Blogger bgbowers.com and I are writing this together. Please check her blog for every other episode. Thank you.
“You can’t go back into the field immediately,” said Karr smiling.
“It takes two days for your chip to reset.”
“Right,” I said, the memory filtering into my mind.
“I can think of several things we could do while we wait,” snickered Karr wickedly.
“What would you have done if I didn’t get back on the bike?”
“Let you go,” he said. “I would have caught up with you later. I always bring you back.”
“Have I ever brought you back?”
“Of course, but I’m easy. I always follow you,” he said, grinning.
“Why doesn’t the Mechanic make chips that don’t break?”
“He’s working on it but we take a beating and that tries his patience. This time it was a fight, a fall from a fire escape and a thug stamping directly on your wrist, remember?”
“Vaguely,” I whispered. “Did I get him?”
“Indeed you did,” laughed Karr.
“I don’t remember everything.”
“That’s why you can’t be reassigned until the two days are up.”
“Who’s the Grey Man?”
“Is Ruby writing him?”
“Yes, she is. If she can write him into a corner it will make it easy for us to find him again.”
“He’s elusive. She needs to write faster and in great detail.”
“She’s writing him toward us right now.”
“Good. I want him,” I said. “He’s not getting away again.”
“Is Martha my grandmother?”
“No, and if you value your life, don’t ever let her hear you ask that question.”
“Are you ready to apologize to Timmy for kicking him into the wall?”
“Sure. But Billy called me a bitch.”
“If the shoe….”
“Don’t even go there,” I said, picking up the gun I had dropped onto the table. “I’ll apologize then let’s talk about how we’re going to bring the Gray Man down.”
This is a tag-team writing effort. bgbowers and I are writing every other episode of Message on a Windshield. Her writing can be seen on her bgbowers.com . Thank you.
“Okay,” I said angrily. “Do you think, for one single moment, that I won’t pull this trigger?”
“Of course not, dear,” said Ms. Martha gently. “We would all be very disappointed if you did not. Fortunately, for me at least, the bullets aren’t real, so there’s truly no point now, is there?”
I pulled the trigger, and the only sound I heard was a sharp click. I did it again and again but nothing happened. “Karr.”
“You’re a dead man.”
“Everybody has to die, Danaë.”
“Some sooner than others,” I said, dropping the gun on the table. “And my name is Robin Blue.”
“No, dear,” said Ms. Martha quickly, “Robin Blue is your code name.”
“My CODE NAME?” I laughed. “And seriously, what’s with the Ms. Martha? Can’t we just call you Martha and be done with it? I feel like I just fell into a truly bad James Bond movie knock-off.”
Laughter filled the room and everyone smiled at me. “There is a small glitch in your chip dear,” said Ms. Martha. “Happens all the time. Nothing to worry about. Once the Mechanic fixes it, you’ll be back to normal and on your way.”
The lights in the room dimmed, just as I was backing toward the huge doors. Pictures flashed onto the wall and there I was, standing in front of the Empire State Building with Karr. Then I was smiling and hugging Ms. Martha. The others came into view, one frame after another. Pictures taken in locations all over the world.
“Who am I?” I asked, staring at the ever changing photographs.
“Not who, dear,” said Ms. Martha. “What.”
“Okay, WHAT am I,” I asked.
“You’re a field agent, dear, and your chip has gone all wonky.”