My Jen Blaylock series — Crown Fire, Kornukopia and The Valedictorians — is now available in ebook form, with the first book on special at a deep discount. Check out the details here, along with a Blaylock micro-short, then come back here for a little follow-up tale.
“What do you think you’re doing?” The man wasn’t asking. He was pleading.
“Beginning as I mean to go on,” Jen Blaylock said. “That’s doing New Year’s right, isn’t it?”
She stood at the yacht’s wheel, looking out into the night. The rain made it hard to see through the wheelhouse window. West of Vancouver Island, the waves were building, but not in full storm yet. She had time. And she could see well enough. There were lights in the distance: the other boat drawing close.
“You have to let me go,” Barry Pellman said.
“Oh? Why?” She turned from the window and began to pack up her equipment. She shouldered her C7A1 assault rifle, stuffed the remaining rope into her pack, and checked the detonator at her belt. She stepped over the bodies of Pellman’s security detail as she walked to the door. There were five men here. Another six lay on the deck. Thugs with pricey toys. She stopped with one foot outside. The January wind lashed the rain into the wheelhouse. She looked back at Pellman, waiting for an answer.
He was tied to the dais-mounted chair he had had installed on his bridge. Blaylock had turned his throne into his prison. He looked haggard the dim lighting. His fake tan had paled. No master of the universe now. “I’m an MP,” he said, just above a whisper, and it was clear he knew how weak his argument was.
She laughed. “I’ve bagged bigger game than that, believe me.”
“But this is murder.”
“Yes it is,” she agreed. “So is human smuggling. I saw what was inside your freight containers.”
“But the fire… You’ve wrecked my shipping yards and my company. It’s all over.”
“I once let a man live when I thought he couldn’t be a threat any longer,” Blaylock said. She thought of the thousands who had died in the wake of that decision. “So consider this my resolution: no more mercy. Not ever.” She looked off the bow. The other boat was much nearer. “You’re not finished until I decide you are,” she told Pellman.
She left him then, and climbed down the side of the Fortitude into her Zodiak. The ride was a rough one. The waves were growing stronger, and in the troughs she lost sight of Pellman’s yacht. She kept the inflatable steady, and waited until the second boat had drawn abreast of the Fortitude. Then she pulled out the detonator. She had planted enough C4 to deal with both vessels.
At the crest of a wave, when she had a good view of the running lights of the boats, she triggered the explosives. “As I mean to continue,” she said, and watched the night burn.
© David Annandale 2014