Mystery and Crime Fiction posted September 10, 2018 Chapters:  ...11 12 -13- 14... 

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Things reach the boiling point as tensions mount.

A chapter in the book The Captain's License

Friendly Fire

by Thomas Bowling


Brenda has been taken hostage by Frank. Now, River and Gage negotiate to get her back.

Chapter 13

Gage sat down. “What's the deal?” 

“Frank wants to trade Brenda for you. I told him you were willing. We'll do anything to get Brenda back.”

River drove to the meeting place. Frank's car was already there. When they arrived, Brenda jumped out of Frank's car and ran to River, throwing herself into his arms. River looked her over. “Did he hurt you, Baby?”

“He never touched me. I told him if he did, I would slit his throat. He believed me and kept his distance. Let's go home.”

Frank walked up. “I kept my end of the deal. Where's Gage?”

“He needs a day to put his affairs in order. He'll be here tomorrow.”

“Don't try to cross me. I grabbed your bitch once. I can do it again, capish?”

“Yeah, catfish. Gage will be here.”

They went to the cottage and Brenda took a shower. River walked in. “Mind if I join you?”

“Come in, Lover Boy. You can do my back.”

“It's your front that I want to do. Turn around.”

“Sure. We want satisfied customers at Brenda's Brothel.”

After they finished, they got dressed and went into the living room. Gage was there. He dropped to his knees and grasped Brenda's hands. “Did he hurt you, girl?”

“He knew better. He never touched me.”

“If he had, I would kill him. I would rip him to shreds with my bare hands.”

Gage paced across the floor. River saw him looking for something to punch. “Slow down, Buddy. We have her back. Everything is fine now.”

Gage walked to the bar and for the first time in years, poured himself a drink. River and Brenda looked at each other. River motioned for Brenda to follow him to the kitchen. They decided to give Gage time to cool down.

After a while, Gage staggered into the room. “What are you assholes doing? Plotting against me? I've always known you didn't like me, River. You kept me around for laughs. I provided some entertainment. Well, guess what, I never liked you either. You don't know how many times I wanted to kick the shit out of you. The only reason I didn't was you're the only friend I have. If I had lots of friends, you'd be number one on my list to get a beat down. It's not going to save your sorry ass tonight.”

Gage took a swing at River, missed and fell down. He struggled to get up, but his legs wouldn't cooperate. River and Brenda attempted to help him up, but now he was dead weight. He fell asleep on the floor. In the morning, he was embarrassed. “River, I'm so sorry. When you see Dorothy, apologize for me. I know I don't deserve to ever see her again. Please tell me I didn't make too big of an ass out of myself.”

“Are you kidding? You were a riot. Brenda and I laughed our asses off. I just wish you could have been there to see it.”

“You're not lying to me, are you?”

“Never in a million years.”

Gage's head throbbed. He grabbed it and flinched. River went to the medicine cabinet. “How many Excedrin do you want?”


Gage left to turn himself over to Frank. 

To be continued . . . 

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