“Shades of Justice” Chapter Nine

Kathy’s only worry was that there may be more than one person living in the same apartment. If there were, Jack would be beside her in seconds and take care of the problem. She looked through the door window. Saw nothing except staircase. She rang the bell and heard it faintly through the door. A staircase overhead light came on and she heard descending footsteps. A face looked out. Good, it’s the same person, she thought. She motioned for him to open the door. He hesitated for a moment then opened the door and said, “What do want?”

“I’m sorry but I scraped a blue Ford Taurus and wonder if you know who owns it. No one else is around and I’m in a hurry to find the owner so I can pay for the damages. You know how it is with insurance companies. They charge…..”

“Lady, stop for a minute. Did you say you hit a blue Ford?”

“Yes, but I’m trying…..”

“Shit! Never mind. Show me the damage.”

“No need to get angry. I’ll pay.”

“You’re damn right you will.”

With the suspect walking beside her, Kathy led the way back to the traffic side of the blue Ford. As they came around the trunk and Kathy pointed to the front door, Jack slipped up behind and put a two-arm neck lock on the suspect, lifting him a few inches off the ground. The neck lock cut off blood flow to the brain from both carotids and in less than 20 seconds the man collapsed. Jack lifted him and put him in the back of the truck and closed the door. Kelly secured his arms and legs with duct tape and put a piece over his mouth. Kelly went to her car and drove off with the panel truck right behind.

Several blocks away, she pulled into a parking spot and got in the panel truck. She went into the back with Jack as Kathy drove off. The prisoner was awake and struggling. Jack hadn’t said a word. He nodded at Kelly, leaned over and spoke through the bag into the prisoner’s ear.

“We know who you are and what you’ve done. We’re not the police and don’t see much of a reason why we shouldn’t kill you now. If you help us you can live, otherwise don’t waste our time. We’ll just find someone else from your band of kidnappers to help us. Now I’m going to take the bag off your head and the tape off your mouth. I’ll give you a chance to live. Scream and it will be the last sound you ever make. Nod if you understand me.”

The prisoner nodded several times. Jack had gone through the man’s wallet and knew the name he was using was Walid Kassem. Jack took off the bag and tore off the duct tape. Walid choked and gagged. Kelly handed Jack a bottle of water and he gave Walid a drink.

Jack said, “Walid Kassem. Yes, I know your name and that your car is stolen, as well as the license plates, and you are part of the kidnapping gang that kidnapped a young woman yesterday. I hope you’re smart enough to know letting you see my face means if you don’t work with me and answer every question you will be dead by drowning in the next ten minutes. Now, think hard and tell me if you are willing to cooperate. Talk now!”

Walid rolled his eyes try to see who else was there. Kelly was back in the shadows and Jack was shining a flashlight in his eyes. Walid tensed against the tape constraints and said, “I am not telling you anything.”

Jack leaned down, taped his mouth and eyes, tied his legs up in a 45-degree angle to the overhead supports in the roof of the truck, and secured his body using the cargo straps in the truck. Kelly handed Jack a towel and a half-gallon bottle of water. Jack put the towel over Walid’s face and without saying a word began slowly pouring water on the towel. Walid began to struggle. With his mouth taped, the sensation of drowning was more pronounced. A few seconds after the struggles stopped, Jack removed the towel. He made no move to help him breathe. Jack took the tape off his mouth and Walid began to gag. When he began to breathe Jack leaned over and whispered, “Walid, are you ready to help me?”

“What do you want?” he managed to sputter.

“Wrong answer.” Jack taped his mouth, put the towel on a struggling, moaning Walid, and began pouring water on the towel. The thrashing redoubled. In 90 seconds, the movement stopped. Jack removed the towel and tape. Slowly, Walid began to breathe. Again Jack whispered in his ear, “Walid, are you ready to help me? I don’t think you’ll live through the next towel session.”

Walid rasped out, “Yes! Please stop! Please! I’ll help.”

“Listen Walid, this is your last chance. So you had better not hold anything from me. And no lies. You see, I already know some of the answers. How do think we found you? The last one died. He told me some things but then stopped talking. You can see I had no choice. Don’t make the same mistake.”

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Filed under Action thrillers, Barry Kelly, Books, Spy novels

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