tagNovels and NovellasThe Job Pt. 04

The Job Pt. 04


Author's Note: This story was edited by Tim413413. His work was embarrassingly difficult. I actually think he spent more time on this than I did. Thank you sir!


Jayden hit Evansville just before the dinner hour. He had stopped for gas in Nashville and picked up a candy bar and a cup of Caravan Coffee's Mountain Dark. Other than that, he hadn't really eaten anything substantial since breakfast. His stomach was complaining so he pulled into a small steak house off 62.

An older gentleman, quite possibly the owner, seated Jayden at a corner table at Jayden's request. A young redhead, with freckles across her nose, walked up to the table to take his order. She was wearing the jeans and cowboy shirt that seemed to be the uniform. The jeans were perfectly tight and gave her a wonderful rear end. Jayden smiled a little flirtatiously as she introduced herself.

"I'm Cathy and I will be taking care of you today." Her voice was pretty and she had a nice smile. Jayden was trying not to look like he was undressing her with his eyes. In his mind, he already had her shirt off. "Can I get you something to drink while you look at the menu?"

Jayden looked at the back of the menu. "Let me have a Guinness." He looked back up into her eyes with his best smile, trying to see if there was a chance he might be running his hands through that red hair tonight.

"Yes, Sir," Cathy said as she scribbled on her pad. "The bartender will bring it right over. I'm not allowed to serve it 'til I turn eighteen." She smiled at him then headed toward the bar.

Jayden lost his smile and looked around to see if anyone saw him flirting. 'She looks older,' he told himself. Nothing makes a man feel more like a pervert than catching himself ogling a young girl. He laughed inwardly wondering how many high school boys were fantasizing about that redhead. He was sure the tissue industry was showing record profits in this town.

The bartender had poured the Guinness correctly and had allowed it to sit a moment before it was served. The temperature was optimal. Jayden was pleased to see the care that was taken and hoped the kitchen would be just as competent. It had been a while since he had a really good steak.

Cathy returned a moment later. "Are you ready to order?" Her smile was a little more than friendly and she was leaning closer than necessary. Jayden leaned back a bit and lifted his menu between them.

"I'll have the sirloin, medium rare, with a loaded baked potato," Jayden said, with the best fatherly tone he could muster. No smile and he didn't try to hold her eyes.

Cathy reached over the menu and pointed to the paragraph above the steak section. "You get a salad with that." Jayden wished she didn't lean over like she did. He glanced around to see if anyone else saw it as he pushed the menu farther away, hoping her finger and chest would follow. "What kind of dressing would you like?" She was trying to catch his eyes. Jayden felt like a super perv and held the menu up to her at arms length trying to increase the distance between them.

"Ranch will be fine." Jayden pulled out his phone as Cathy took the menu. He thought ignoring her and playing with his phone would give her a hint. It seemed to work as she left in a small huff. Cathy didn't understand why he suddenly had no interest. He was practically asking her out just a moment ago. Jayden sighed and then prayed she wouldn't spit in his food.

Jayden figured he had a few minutes before his food arrived so he sent a text. It simply said "in town." The response wasn't immediate as he had expected so he sat back and enjoyed his beer. The restaurant was beginning to fill as the clock continued into the dinner hour. Cathy brought some rolls and butter to the table. He could see a little anger behind her eyes as she put the basket down a little harder than necessary. The rolls bounced a bit as she turned quickly and headed to the kitchen without a word. Jayden made a mental note to card everyone he flirted with from now on.

The steak arrived with more disdain from Cathy. Jayden ignored her and enjoyed the aroma. This place knew how to make your mouth water. "Will there be anything else?" Cathy made it sound final. Like she didn't have any intention of coming back if Jayden said no.

"I thought I got a salad with this." Jayden looked up at Cathy with the same disdain she was showing him. He was getting a bit tired of her attitude.

"Oh, yes. I'm so sorry. I'll get it right away." Cathy blushed when she realized she had let her anger mess up her job. It wasn't like she would let the old guy touch her, but she felt insulted when he stopped flirting. She just wasn't used to being spurned by men. She hurried off to correct the salad situation.

The steak was wonderfully juicy. It had a hardwood flavor and just the right amount of peppery seasoning to make it almost melt in Jayden's mouth. There was no need for any steak sauce on the perfectly-cooked cut of meat. Jayden savored every bite and added the restaurant to his mental Rolodex. There was no way he would ever drive past Evansville again without stopping here.

Cathy brought the salad with another apology. Jayden let her off the hook with a smile and a compliment about the steak. She seemed satisfied and moved on to her other tables in a much better mood.

Jayden's phone vibrated as he was finishing his potato. He looked at the text; "XXXOOOOOOOO!!" Something had gone very wrong. There were now three targets for 800K and the text recommended extreme caution. An address and three names followed:

1045 Stricklen Ave.

Beverly Nusome

Pat Thomas

Susan Thomas

Pat and Susan sounded like a couple. Jayden really disliked dealing with couples. He secretly hoped there were no kids in the relationship. Three photos followed in three separate texts.

The first photo was of a blond-haired woman in her thirties. She wasn't smiling and her hair was pulled back tightly into a ponytail that was mostly hidden. Her features were pleasant, but Jayden could tell there was a bit of thickness to her. Not fat, but muscle. She carried it well. Jayden was searching his memory. He thought he may had seen her before. He couldn't place the name and had no idea if it was Beverly or Susan. He shelved his thinking until he looked at the other photos.

The second photo was another thirty something woman with raven hair. The hair was loose around her smiling face. This photo was posed, unlike the first. The hair was styled and a serious amount of makeup was used to bring out color in her skin. It looked like a portrait taken for a holiday postcard. This face didn't jog any memories at all.

The third photo made Jayden cringe. It was of a girl around ten years old with raven-colored hair. This was some kind of retribution hit. There was no way a ten-year-old turned against the mob. He didn't do retribution and could in no way harm a child. Jayden knew they understood this. Something was screwed up beyond recognition and they wanted him to straighten it out.

Jayden slammed his fist on the table which bounced his plates. The restaurant became silent and all heads turned toward him. He ignored them and the old head waiter who was approaching quickly from the front. There was no way he was killing a child. Jayden's face was starting to turn red and his anger was reaching a boiling point. There was no way he would let anyone kill a child.

"Is there a problem, Sir?" asked the old guy who seated him earlier. He didn't come within arms reach since Jayden was looking less than cooperative. Jayden took a deep breath and stood up from the table. The man took another step back.

"No. Just some family issues." Jayden reached into his pocket for his money clip, pulled out a hundred and laid it on the table. "Thank you for a wonderful steak. That should cover the meal and the tip for my lovely waitress." Jayden's face was slowly returning to its normal color as he headed out the door.

Cathy, who was only two tables away, blushed at the "lovely" remark. The meal was less than thirty dollars meaning she just earned a seventy dollar tip. She went over and lifted the bill and watched, through the window, Jayden getting in his car. 'What a wonderfully strange man,' she thought as she tucked the hundred with Jayden's meal ticket.

Jayden sat in his car taking deep breaths. He couldn't afford to go off half-cocked. He had to think it through. Jayden was trying to figure out why they sent the job to him. They must be very desperate if they thought he would take care of it. He had to know where he stood. He picked up his phone and texted, "Drop," and waited for a reply. It was five minutes before his phone vibrated again. He looked at the text and realized how serious things were. There was one word, "Run."

At least they gave him a warning. He started his car and programmed the Stricklen address into the GPS. He took one more good look at the photos and began following the car's GPS down the road. About two blocks from the restaurant, he threw his phone into a drainage ditch. From hitter to hittee in five minutes. He regretted giving Marissa so much of his cash. He would need more, lots more. Giving seventy dollar tips would have to stop.


1045 Stricklen was in a lower-middle-class neighborhood. It was a one story, wood-framed home that looked like it was built in the sixties. It was a dirty white, more from neglect than desired color. Its bushes needed trimming and the grass had a week of too much growth. Jayden didn't understand why anyone who lived there would be of any interest to anyone. He pulled to the curb a few doors before the house and waited.

All the windows had their shades and drapes closed. There didn't seem to be any lights on inside, but full darkness was still an hour away. There was a one car garage with the door down. From all appearances, it looked like no one was home.

Jayden waited low in the car as night began to fall. A delivery truck pulled up to the front of the house. It was colored like UPS, but there were no distinguishable logos. A man stepped out with a clipboard and opened the back, seemly fishing for a package. His movements were too slow for Jayden. This late, a delivery driver should be running his ass off. The driver's clothes were ill-fitting, at least a size too big. The man found the package he was looking for and closed the back doors.

Jayden opened his door, with his Colt in his hand. The interior lights of the car attracted the truck driver's eyes. Jayden stepped out of the car, hiding the Colt along his leg and walked around the back of his vehicle onto the neighbor's front walk. The driver committed to the walkway leading to the house. Jayden made sure the driver reached the door before he reached the neighbor's door. Once the driver rang the doorbell, Jayden turned ninety degrees and walked quickly, straight for him.

Before Jayden crossed the property line, the door opened and the phoney delivery man shoved the box through the opening and tried to follow. Jayden spotted the gun when the clipboard fell to the ground. He broke into a run hoping to catch the man before he was fully inside. He cursed himself for waiting until the driver showed his hand.

The phoney delivery man shoved the gun through the opening in the door and a shot rang out. Then the man screamed as the door closed forcefully on his hand. Jayden reached him as he retracted his broken wrist and empty hand from the door opening. Jayden grabbed the wrist with his free hand and twisted it, sending the man to his knees in pain. Jayden followed with a strong knee to the diaphragm, breaking a rib, and momentarily incapacitating the assassin. Jayden looked up to the door and stared at a barrel of a gun held by a very imposing blonde-haired woman.

"There's no payday here," the woman insisted. Her hair was pulled back severely, just like in her photo. She held the weapon with confidence and her eyes told Jayden she would not hesitate dropping him where he stood. He knew her for what she was.

"I don't do kids." The only muscles that moved were Jayden's lips. He knew better than to provoke this woman. The woman studied Jayden for a moment then dropped the barrel toward the ground.

"That gunshot will bring the police," the woman said. "Get him inside." She grabbed the unbroken hand of the wheezing assassin. Jayden grabbed his other arm and they quickly hauled the guy inside. She grabbed a table lamp and ripped the plug from the wall. Kneeling on her captive, she bound his hands tightly behind his back with the power cable. She left him on the floor, attached to the lamp, as she stood up.

"The targets shouldn't be here," Jayden said, once the door was closed. He looked around the dark house, wondering where she had them stashed.

"They're not here and we need to get gone." She glanced at a watch. "We have maybe two more minutes. Where's your car?" Jayden realized she must have stashed the targets then came back to deal with the hitters.

"Out front, one house down." Jayden was impressed with her thought process.

"Mine is too dirty. We'll take yours." She grabbed the assailant's gun off the floor, put it in the back of her pants and held on to her own. Jayden headed out the door and she followed. They both had guns held at their sides as they moved to Jayden's car. Lights were coming on and faces were at the windows. Both continued walking confidently to the car like nothing had happened. A moment later they were driving the speed limit away from the house. They were a few blocks away when they heard the first sirens.

"You were on my phone," Jayden said to the woman now that they were in the clear.

"I hope it's a good picture," she said, smiling at her joke.

"Nope, you're much better looking in person." Jayden meant it. She could be described as thick if you wanted to be rude. Jayden would have used the term voluptuous. There were curves exactly where he wanted to see them. Her pants accented her hips, but gave her room to move gracefully. She had a pullover white shirt mostly hidden by a thin brown leather jacket. The brown in the jacket accented her hair perfectly.

"You're not so bad yourself." She admired Jayden's confidence. He wasn't hard on the eyes and seemed to be in sync with her. 'A rarity,' she thought. "I'm Bev. What do I call you?" she queried.

"Jayden." He looked briefly at Bev, then continued, "My picture should be making the rounds now." Jayden loved her straightforwardness. This woman had no fear and knew what she wanted. He wondered what it would be like to sleep with her.

"Same job and same limits," Bev chuckled softly. "We'd be great in the sack." She reached over and gave Jayden's shoulder a little squeeze. Jayden reached up and covered her hand with his.

"I would love to find out." Jayden had never met someone so in sync with him. Bev was practically reading his mind. He smiled at her and she gave him a beautiful one back. "First, we need to make the girl safe." He dropped his hand back to the wheel. "Where am I going?"

"Take 41 north up ahead," Bev said, pointing forward. "They are just out of town in a Super 8. Just before the 64 interchange." She looked back at Jayden and carefully said, "I have decided to make it my mission to make sure the girl dies of old age." Jayden liked Bev more and more.

"Old age it is," Jayden chuckled. "They can't make it through the both of us." He felt a hand on his thigh and enjoyed it immensely.

"I'm going to hold you to that sack thing." Bev's voice was low and sultry. It sent a wonderful shiver up Jayden's spine.

Jayden spotted a bank ahead. It had a drive-up ATM, but he parked at the curb a good hundred feet away. "Last stop for cash. Won't be able to use an ATM again for while," he said as he opened the door and stepped out. Any hunter would already know he was in town so he could freely withdraw money today. Once he left the area, electronic transactions would be too risky. Parking at a distance kept the car out of any transaction photo. Unfortunately, the ATM had a $400 limit. He withdrew the $400 and headed back to the car.

"Seems saving children is costly. I have less than a grand in cash," Jayden told Bev as he started the car again. "I have a clean place in Chicago that should have another couple of grand," Jayden continued as the car started forward.

"I have a few thousand," Bev added, "we should be okay for a couple of months. We can work out cash access once the initial assault winds down." Jayden pulled onto 41 and headed north.

"Have you figured out why the child was targeted?" Jayden asked as he merged onto the highway.

Bev readjusted her seat belt before she responded, "Pat, the mother, said she has no idea. Her husband was a DEA agent. He was killed three years back during a failed sting operation. Supposedly, two boats blew up in a firefight, killing all aboard and losing a large shipment of cocaine and millions of dollars." Bev paused to look behind them through the passenger side mirror before she continued. "His body was never found, but his partner's washed up a week later so they pronounced her husband deceased."

"Let me guess," Jayden chimed in, "they didn't find any coke or money either."

"Yep. My guess is the coke just started to hit the streets and the Cartel has realized they have been had," Bev said. "Nothing pisses them off more than being taken."

"We need to find this wonderful husband of hers," Jayden said with a bit of disdain. "I bet they would trade him for them in a heartbeat."

Bev smiled and added, "I would love to be there when it happens. Any asshole who would risk his family for money, deserves whatever the Cartel can dish out." Jayden was in complete agreement with Bev. He wondered if she fantasized about the family she could never have.

Jayden and Bev pulled into the Super 8 a short while later. Bev pointed out that the rear exit was closer to the room, so Jayden took the first empty stall close to the exit. They hid their weapons beneath their clothes and entered the motel.

Bev stopped at room 118. She gave one knock, then inserted her key card and opened the door. Standing at the back of the room was the raven-haired woman who looked a bit older and a lot more frazzled than the photo Jayden saw earlier. She was holding a small handgun in her shaking hands, pointing it in Bev's direction.

"Just me, Pat," Bev said before entering. There was an audible sigh and Pat dropped the gun to her side.

"Tell me why I can't call the police," Pat demanded nervously. She became agitated when she saw Jayden follow Bev into the room.

"Pat, this is Jayden. He is here to help," Bev said casually as she closed and locked the door after Jayden entered.

"The people who are after you are relentless," Jayden stated in answer to Pat's question, "and they only need a location. I assure you there are police scanners waiting for you to do just that. If you feel you need the police, go to them, don't call them." A small head poked up from behind the bed. She looked at Jayden and then ran to her mom. Jayden thought she was younger than ten. He was about to say more, but he changed his mind and smiled, trying to lighten the conversation. "You must be Susan," Jayden said in his friendliest voice. The girl nodded and moved behind her mom's leg.

"Why don't we do that? I mean go to the police," Pat said as she moved her gun to the other hand, farther away from Susan.

"They can protect you for a while," Bev replied in a pessimistic tone, "in time, their protection will weaken. They only have so many resources, but the threat has basically limitless resources."

"And you think Vincent did this to us?" Pat questioned as she sat down on the second bed and lifted Susan to her lap. Bev mouthed "husband" to Jayden.

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