"I don't care what anyone said, I am NOT going to."
"Yes you are."
"But, you have to."
"Nope. No one told me I'd have to do that when I took this job."
"It's not written in stone, but we all had to do it."
"No way! Sorry. If you want it done, you do it."
"Look, if you don't you can't join us."
"Good. I don't want to join you. You're all pains in the asses anyway."
"Your confidence in us is heartwarming, Mr. Williams."
"How can you not do it?"
"Yeah, you were so gung ho to join us, now you refuse to do this, what we all already did?"
"Noting you can say will change my mind. I will not do this!"
"For Pete's sake, if you aren't going to do it, then get the hell out of here before I kill you!"
"Fine I'm leaving! Get out of my way."
Six men listened to the heated exchange from their hiding places around the warehouse. Their mikes picking up every word from the five men standing around the rusted junk heap of a car in the center of the small building.
The seventh man of their team, Buck Wilmington, stood in the open with the men around the junk. His tall form was clothed in dirt crusted ratty old jeans, a dirty tee shirt, jacket with holes, and worn down tennis shoes. His dark hair looked as if it was greased with old grease, and he had run his fingers through it, leaving the longer strands standing up. More grease covered his mustache and looked as if particles of food resided in the dark hairs. His handsome face was covered with a month's beard and dirt. His hand that could be seen was streaked with dirt.
The four men standing around the car with Buck, were dressed in jeans and shirts that looked as if they'd come from an expensive store. The men themselves looked neat and tidy compared to Buck. They were all gazing at Buck in surprise at his refusal to do what their leader told him, especially after Buck approached them some time ago.
Buck, undercover for the last few weeks, ran his hand through his messy hair and started to turn away. He hoped he wouldn't get shot in the back. He was sure three of the men wouldn't shoot him but he wasn't sure about the one calling himself Jake Trembler. The man seemed to have a death wish from what he'd discovered with his time with the men. The man seemed to have ice for blood, he didn't care about life. Killing was nothing to him, and money. The more he could get, the better he liked it, and if someone got killed on the way, so what. He didn't care.
The man, Jake Trembler, stared unblinking at him. Buck decided not to turn his back on the man. He edged backwards towards the door.
For a moment, Buck doubted he would be allowed to leave. He'd been with the men for over a month, and knew the plan they had of robbing the building housing the state inspected liquor. It would happen before the liquor was distributed to stores. He had the time and date, but when Jake insisted that he prove his worth to become a member. He couldn't do it.
He shuddered thinking of what they wanted. To kill someone in a hit and run accident, or a drive by shooting. They would point out who he had to take down. No way would he even consider killing someone for these people, even if his life depended on the crime. He wouldn't do it no matter what.
Buck quickly glanced around him. He hoped the others were there, he didn't have much time. His gaze landed on Jake once more, the man's glare was hate filled. Jake's hand rested on the gun he wore in a shoulder holster. Buck knew Jake held another one behind his back. The other three men were also armed. He held his hands out from his body and backed several more steps.
Just as Trembler's hand moved to bring his gun from behind him, a yell sounded in the confines of the building.
"ATF! Raise your hands! NOW!" Buck sighed in relief hearing Chris Larabee's voice and raised his hands. But the other four men drew their weapons. Buck dropped to the floor. Gunfire rang out all around him. Buck drew his hidden gun and fired at Jake as the man turned to shoot behind him.
The deep throated noise of a rifle sounded and Jake went down. Silence fell as the two other men raised their hands. The third man was lying on the floor holding his side, near Jake's body.
Buck rose and smiled as his team began to gather around him. He eyed each one as they arrived, making sure he didnít see any blood on them. They were fine. Vin came down from the rafter, his sniper rifle slung over his shoulder. He grinned at Buck.
" Sure happy to see you boys. I wasn't sure I would be able to walk away today." Buck said in a low voice. He watched as several police officers, who had arrived moments after the gunfire stopped, took charge of the three prisoners. Handcuffing the men they called for an ambulance and EMT's.
When one of the prisoners complained to the police, "Williams' is one of us. He should be here too."
Josiah Sanchez, ATF Team Seven's profiler, answered. "He's in our custody. ATF has been looking for him for some time."
Before the man could say anything else the agents hustled Buck out of the warehouse and away from the front of the building. They moved far enough away that they couldn't be overheard but, could watch the police and prisoners.
Chris shook his head and answered Buck's earlier words. "We were here an hour ago. Glad you decided to show up!"
Buck, happy to be with his team grabbed Chris in a hug, then Vin Tanner, the sharpshooter for the team, who squirmed to get away. "I'm sure glad to see you all!" Buck exclaimed and turned to the others around him.
Ezra Standish, the team's undercover agent, moving fast, stepped back away from him. "Mr. Wilmington, you smell, you need a bath. And I have no idea what that stuff in your hair is all about. You look grotesque. Please do not touch me!"
With a laugh, Buck caught the con man in a hug anyway. Holding him for only a few seconds before turning to his roommate.
"JD, are you all right? Any calls from my ladies? How's the apartment? I have sure missed you."
JD Dunne, Buck's roommate laughed and backed up, but was unable to dodge the long arms.
"I'm fine, I didn't touch any of your stuff. No phone calls. Apartment is fine, and the bathroom is cleaned up so you can mess it up again. You really do stink!"
Buck laughed. "Let's get out of here guys. I want a shower and a good hot meal. I'm starved. Do we have to do reports first?" he looked at Chris.
"Yep, got to get those done. You can clean up in the gym showers. After reports, we'll all go for dinner. Let's go."
The seven men paused long enough for Ezra to inform the police captain in charge they were leaving. Their reports would be sent to him as soon as possible. They walked to the two vehicles parked down the block. Nathan Jackson, EMT for the team did his best to look Buck over as they walked. He shook his head, the man really did stink, and he hoped he didn't have to ride in the same vehicle with him..
Three hours later, the seven men were at the Saloon, their favorite restaurant and bar, with drinks and plates of food before them. Vin snatched some fries off Buck's plate, stuffing them into his mouth before Buck could react.
"So what was it they wanted you to do?" Vin asked.
"Damn men. It was either a drive by shooting or killing someone with a vehicle. Hit and run. You know, there have been several this last year. I think some were guys trying to prove they were good enough to join Trembler's gang. Cops need to question the prisoners. I think it will solve a few open cases for them."
Vin glanced at Chris. Then noticed Josiah already had his cell phone out and was making the call.
"It will be good to be able to set some families minds to rest. Quite a few wondered why their loved ones were killed, for no reason." Nathan said listening to Josiah talking into the phone.
"Amen to that!" Ezra said raising his glass.
Seven glasses clinked together. A liquor theft stopped, a killer taken down, some families getting closure, the seven back together. Buck cleaned up and fed. All was good again in their world.
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