Can the love of another really help a person overcome the need for revenge or is the old saying true about digging two graves?
Dedicated to the men and women of the US Marshal Service.
Edited by my husband Paul, Honeysuckle, and djkuffman.
“And I have the evidence to prove it.”
Sam and Bobby both looked at the young girl as if she just said she was the second coming. In all the time they had with her not once did she say anything about having evidence of some kind? They had only assumed she was a witness to a murder. Nothing their boss had told them that she had something to take down the LOG party. They both realized that this protection detail just became a whole lot more difficult.
“Kristine, where is that evidence now?” Bobby asked her.
The girl started to giggle and reach up to her necklace. It looked rather cute on her. It was shaped to look like a fake bar of gold. They both watch as she grabs both ends and pulls. The ‘bar’ comes apart in two pieces, revealing it to be a flash drive. As Kristine holds it up for them to see what she has she is giggling.
“My father gave me this flash drive for school. He never thought I would use it to download and back up his office computer hard drive files. Shit, that man thought his password was unbreakable. I mean really who uses their pet name for their wife as a password. I mean really? Bugs? Who in their right mind calls someone they are supposed to love Bugs?”
“Kristine, just what is on that flash drive? We know that you saw the murder, but why do you have your fathers hard drive files backed up on that flash drive?” Now Sam was really curious about the files on that drive.
“On this drive is everything anyone would need to destroy the LOG party. Records of pay offs to judges to let criminals go, names of juries that have been fixed, locations of witnesses in the program, everything. The LOG party is not as upstanding as people have been lead to believe. Mr. Wright was killed on the orders of the LOG party leader, Harold Blackwell. There is even a copy of an email on there of those orders.”
“Wait a minute the Chief Deputy Marshal knew about a hit on Wright and did nothing about it?” Bobby asked her.
“Yup, sure did. That isn’t the only thing he knew about either. Trust me, my father is in so deep with the LOG and its dirty dealings that when the Attorney General gets done with him he’ll have to use a tampon to stop the licking.”
“Just how deep in are you Kristine?” Sam needed to know.
“I know what you’re thinking Sam. The answer is no. I have no desire to get involved with those people. I started to hate them long ago when one of them killed my mama while driving drunk.”
“You mention something about that at the Hell-mart. Right before you had your mini-breakdown. Would you care to elaborate on that now that we are alone? You’ve hinted around that it might not have been an accident.” Sam was not going to let her change the topic this time. Whatever it was eating at her, was slowly driving her to an early grave.
Looking down at the floor Kristine sighed then walked over and sat down on the couch next to Sam. The girl was fighting herself to keep her emotions under control. She looked at the two deputies and thought over what she was about to say. Just how much was she willing to divulge and how much should she keep to herself. After a few minutes she decides to tell them everything.
“Let me start from the beginning, ok?”
“Just take your time, and don’t push yourself, honey.” Sam tells her with a smile.
“Yah, munchkin, you take your sweet time. We have all night, and all day to listen to you. In fact until we hear from the ADA, we ani’t leaven this hotel room unless it’s an emergency.” Bobby had a small smile on his face as he told her this. He was positive that this was how it was going to go, until Sam shook her head no.
“Sorry, partner, but we’ll be leaving here as soon as I get word on Kristine’s doctor appointment.”
“What doctor appointment, Sam?”
“Our little girl here has been taking illegal hormones. We need to get her checked out and on the correct and legal hormones.” At Kristine’s gasp Sam smiles over at her. “I told you that we do everything in our power to make sure those we protect are healthy and safe. That includes your mental health as well.” Sam didn’t get to finish what she was saying before Kristine had her in a bone breaking hug. After a few seconds Sam pried Kristine’s arms from around her neck. “Kristine I really need to breathe here kiddo.”
Everyone got a good laugh out of that. Bobby not one to let something like this pass just had to get a quick dig in at his partner. “You know something Sam, having the munchkin around just might be a civilizing influence on you.” When Kristine starts to giggle hearing this Sam knows she can’t let it pass without commenting.
“No comment for the peanut gallery you. Besides you’re one to talk. At least I don’t leave my three day old underwear hanging off the back of the door to the bathroom.”
“Ewww! Gross!” Kristine had them all laughing at her outburst. The little bye play was just what she needed to be able to tell her story. “Thank you guys. I really needed that laugh. Look I know that what I am about to tell you is going to sound crazy, almost impossible to believe, but it is the truth. This all started seven months ago. I had just got home from school. As I walked through the door I overheard my father yelling at someone on the phone in his office. I stood outside of the office and listened to what he was saying to the person on the other end. They were talking about some investigation into the LOG by the FBI. The next thing I heard is my father telling the person on the other end to make it look like an accident like they did with my mom. Then he hung up the phone. I waited a few minutes then slipped upstairs to my room. I don’t know who he was talking to, but a few days later I see on the news where the DA for Columbus died in a drunk driver accident.” The young girl stopped for a few seconds to take drink from the water bottle on the coffee table.
“I waited a few days for a time when both my step mother and father were out for the night. I went to his office and turned on his computer. It only took me a few minutes to get into the system. He used my birthday as his login screen password. Once I was in I started looking through his files. That’s when I found the secured file folders. They were hidden in a blind partition on his hard drive. I knew I didn’t have time to sit and work my way through the password screen for it. So I copied it all on to the flash drive using the backup function. It took me another four months to figure out his password for the secured files. Once I had that I would go down and make backup copies of his pc every week. This is a 32 gigabit flash drive and it has only 8 gigabits left for use.” At the looks of surprise on the deputies’ faces she almost giggled.
“Oh it’s not all from my father’s pc. Those fools over at LOG allow anyone with the right passwords to connect to their main servers. It only took me half an hour to figure out dear daddy’s passwords, and another ten minutes to crack the security codes for the parties backdoor into their severs. Of the 24 gigabits on that flash drive that are used 19 of them are straight off of the LOG black box server.”
“What you’re tell us is that in your hand is the total of every dirty trick, backroom deal, underhand, amoral, shady, and illegal action the LOG has ever done?” what Kristine just told them was blowing Bobby’s mind. This was the holy grail of found evidence. An entire access to a potential carrier making bust’s evidence. “All of that on a digital format.” When Kristen just nodded her head both Sam and Bobby damn near grab their phones. Then only thing that stopped them was their training. They needed to know the whole story of how Kristine got her hands on all this information and who knew.
“Kristine, could you get back into their servers, like you did before?” Sam asked her, hopping in the back of her head that the girl could do it.
“Are you kidding me? The security for their servers is for shit. I am surprised your IT investigation division hasn’t already cracked it. Anybody with half a mind could figure out their passwords. It only took me ten minutes; I mean who in their right mind uses the motto of their company as the passwords. While not exactly the motto, it is in Latin after all.”
“Wait the LOG uses their motto as the passwords for their servers, but instead of English they use Latin?” Bobby asked her to clarify.
“Sure, it’s Lex, Imperatus, and Deus, but there all run together as one word. If dear old daddy hadn’t written it down and his clue to the secure files I would never have figured it out.” Kristine was blushing at this point. Her inner geekitte was showing. “Trust me; I could get in with even your dinosaur lap tops.”
At her comment about their issued government lap tops both deputies started to laugh. It was a well-known fact that most government issued lap tops, desk pcs' and cell phones were on average four to five years out of date, especially for field officers like them. Most field officers just buy their own if they want to stay current. Both Bobby and Sam couldn’t help themselves it was just too funny that Kristine thought that their lap tops were ancient.
“Um… why do you want me to break in again?” Kristine asked them.
“Kristine, the fact that you did it the first time so easily shows that you have a gift that most investigation units would kill for.” Sam told her. “Tell me something; is the info on this flash drive encrypted?”
“Yup, I even upgrade the encryption code. The only person who can unlock those files is me. Anyone else would have four tries before it wipes itself clean and uploads a virus that wipes their hard drive and crashes their computer.”
Both deputies are shock at how easy this young girl talks about first hacking a major server. Then stealing secured files, from a known security nut case, and then decode and re-encrypt them, floors them both. The fact that she did it from, what is basically her home computer, is beyond their grasp. The dipshits over at the FBI, Homeland, and Justice Department have been unable to get past the LOG’s firewall, and they have access to main frame severs. Not to mention everything else they have at their disposal. Before either of them can ask another question she starts to giggle.
“My ‘dear daddy’ tried to have the techs in Columbus crack my codes. I think they’re still trying to figure where the virus came from. From what I heard the senior IT tech blew a fuse when his three thousand dollar custom built desk top eats itself.” Kristine’s giggle fest over this caused both Sam and Bobby to crackup laughing. Both of them could see it in their heads.
“It couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy, if you ask me. I hate the prick. The last time we were in Columbus the son-of-bitch made me rewrite an arrest report because I didn’t use Word the first time around.” Bobby said with a smile. “That little pencil neck geek deserves worse. I have heard horror stories about the man. If it isn’t done his way he deletes whatever it is and makes the author redo their work. He never realizes how much hell he puts people through.”
“You should have to deal with him as your tutor for Computer Programing 101. When my father found out I was taking CP 101 in school he had that IT asshole come by the house every Thursday to ‘tutor’ me in computer programing. You know what the real laugh is? I taught him more than he taught me. Why that shithead even took credit for work that I did for him on three cases. If it won’t have caused a problem for the arresting Deputies I would have said something.”
When Sam heard this she was really interested in those three cases. “Do you remember which three cases Kristine?”
“Oh sure, they made the news and everything. Those are also on the flash drive. For an IT tech and ‘supposed’ Computer Forensic Expert that man don’t know jack shit. He got his job because of my father.” Kristine was starting to get mad now. In Sam’s mind this was a good thing. “He is another of ‘daddy’s’ LOG cronies. Hell, an easy ten percent of the Columbus office is LOG members. All of them down there go out of their way to avoid the LOG party. If an investigation comes anywhere near them somebody shuts it down. All the proof of that is on that flash drive in the files I copied off ‘dear daddy’s’ office computer.” The more Kristine told these two deputies the more she wanted to trust them.
“Kristine, is there a file in here on the death of your mama?” Sam knew she was stepping into a very touchy area for their young charge. If she pushed too hard for the information it could cause her to breakdown again.
In a very small voice with tears starting to glisten in the corners of her eyes Kristen looks Sam in the eyes. “Yes. It is under the file name, Freedom.” The girl reaches up and wipes her eyes. “The mother fucker had the balls to call the plan to murder my mama, Freedom. As if her giving him ten years of her life, a son, and supporting his ass for the first years he was with the Marshals, was a prison sentence. All she asked for was the chance to return to the dance stage. Was that too much to ask for? To be able to do what she loved?”
Sam pulls the young girl into her arms as Bobby steps over to the couch and sits down on the other side of her. With the arms of both deputies wrapped around her Kristine breaks down again for the second time that day. Wrapped in their arms she sheds all the pinned up tears she couldn’t shed over her mother’s death. It takes her a few minutes before she finally calms back down. Sniffling back the snot that was running down her nose.
“Sorry about that, guys. It just hit me all at once again. Every time I think about what is in that file I come close to wanting to kill myself or that bastard father of mine. Him and that whore of his that moved in after mama’s death. I wish I could have found the proof linking her to my mama’s death, but everywhere I looked there was nothing. The closest thing I could find was a reference to someone called Diamond. Whoever they are, their mentioned in those files at least eight hundred times. Its’ Diamond wants this, Diamond needs that, or Diamond said that. The one thing I have found out it was this Diamond that put together the hit on my mama.”
“Kristine, that’s the third time in the past three hours you have said your mama’s death was a murder for hire. Can you tell us how they did it?” bobby could already tell that Sam was trying to avoid hurting the young girl, but they needed information on these hits. Information that wasn’t on her flash drive. Besides he knew it would help Kristine by getting her anger out in the open. If she were to go before a defense attorney now, she would blow their whole case. She was far too emotionally involved. The girl needed to distance herself from the pain of her mother’s death and her father’s involvement with it.
“In the Freedom file is a sub file that tells how they did it.” Kristine said.
“Kristine, honey, we know that we can open that file with your help and read it: but the defense attorney is going to want to hear you say.” Sam says quietly to the girl in her arms.
They both watch as Kristine reaches deep inside to find an inner strength that neither saw. When she looks up at the two of them the fire from before had returned. With it they can tell is a will of forged steal and the drive to find justice for more than just her mama. The thought of God help the fool that crosses this girl ran through both of their minds. Sam saw something else in Kristine’s eyes, something she would have to keep from Bobby for now.
“They set the date for my mama’s last performance for her death. I had just turned five and was watching the performance on PBS. She had just started performing full time again with that show. They had done the ballet version of Dracula. That night the local LOG party was there outside the theater, and was protesting the performance saying all kinds of nasty things about it. They had even gone so far as to try and block the side door entrance. After the performance my mama and the other dancers waited for the CPD to clear the protesters away before leaving. By this time it was well after two in the morning. The prime time for drunken drives. Mama was on the I 75 highway leaving downtown heading for home. She had just passed the Western Hills Viaduct when she was rear ended by a drunken drive and forced into the guardrail, flipping her car and killing her. At least that was what the Highway Patrol reported. The problem was the so called drunk driver is or I should say was a professional stunt driver. Those people never drink and drive. They can’t afford to lose their drivers permit. Then there is the way her car was hit. It couldn’t have been done any better to force her into the rail head on. It wasn’t until after I overheard my father making that one phone call that I started to put two and two together and come up with the National Budget.”
Both Sam and Bobby chuckled at her description. It wasn’t the National Budget she had come up with but a solid theory of murder. No one would think twice about a death involving a drunk driver. The cops on the scene would just arrest the drunk and throw their ass in jail. That’s if they were alive to be able to arrest. However a professional driver could do the job and down more than a few drinks before the cops showed up. Everything would look like an accident with a drunk driver involved and however many fatalities. Sure the drunk would be facing criminal charges but they wouldn’t be first degree murder. At most they would face Man slaughter or third degree murder at most. Total time would be ten to twenty with time off for good behavior. Meaning they might do five years.
“Kristine how did you figure out that it was, no scratch that. Please, just continue with your story, munchkin. I’ll hold my questions tell the end.” Bobby told her as he rubbed her back to help keep her calm.
“Ok, Bobby, as I said earlier I waited for them to leave one night and started to copy my ‘daddy’s’ hard drive and files. It took me a while but I got enough to take down the LOG and my
father. Everything on that flash drive is from either his office computer of the LOG party servers. I was all set to go to my father’s superior when I found the email talking about Wrights death and who they would be putting in his place. The only problem was that Mr. Wright wasn’t dead yet. I login into the LOG servers and found the file on his soon to be death at the hands of the cartels. How it would be done, when it would happen, what they were going to do after his death. It was all there in electronic black and white. There are even files on the flash drive showing how the LOG and the Chihuahua drug cartels have been working hand in hand to run illegal drugs in the Mid-west. They only had one problem, and that was Wright. He was bringing too much heat on the LOG party. Once again this Diamond person was calling the shots. Every one of the emails started with them. I tried to warn Mr. Wright but everything I tried he just ignored.”
Sam interrupted her at this point. “Please tell me that you went to his on purpose the night he was killed trying to warn him?”
“Um… yes ma’am. I had to do something. I may not like the man’s political beliefs, but he didn’t deserve to die. Not to protect a bunch of crooked politicians and drug dealers. Most of the LOG has no idea of what is really going on behind the scenes. I figured I could use my weekly group meeting and turnabout party to slip away and warn the man. I only made one mistake. I forgot to wind my lady’s watch. I mean I had the time and date from the email so I figured I would leave early and get there in time to give him the warning and leave. I figured it would work as I kept my plan simple. I should have had enough time to get there then get away, but by the time I realized my watch had stopped it was too late.”
“So you followed the old adage of K.I.S.S. or keep it simple stupid, and still made a mistake. Did you learn anything from this Kristine?” Sam asked her with a small smile. “Like let the professionals handle something like these? You do realize that if you had been just five minutes earlier, they would have found your body among those of the Wrights?”
The girl had her head down as Sam talked to her about her mistaking plan. “Yes, ma’am. I do now. It’s just… well I just… oh I don’t know.”
“You wanted to make up for your father’s crimes, and avenge your mama’s death all in one big show right?” Sam asked her kindly. When Kristine nods her head Sam just smiles.
“Before you ask how I know what you’re thinking I want you to think back to the talk we had in the gym’s ladies locker room. Trust me, sweetheart, I know what it feels like to want to right the sins of a father. Now, why don’t you take a break and go wash your face.”
“Ok. I’ll be right back. I just need a few minutes to get myself cleaned up.” Both Sam and Bobby watched as Kristine went into the suite’s bathroom and closed the door. Bobby was the first to comment on the young woman’s story once she was out of earshot.
“Do you believe the guts of that kid? Sam, you know and I know that we can’t let that flash drive be anywhere nears the munchkin. If we let her hand that thing over to the ADA or any of the alphabets she’ll never see the light of day. If what she says is on there, that thing is a fucking nuke with a short fuse ready to go off without warning. What the hell are we going to do? Because you and I both know how hot she is right now. If we add in that flash drive it’ll take a Federal First Circuit Court Judge to sort it all out. That’s if those pricks over in Homeland don’t hear about it. If that happens there’s no telling what’ll happen.”
“You’re right Bobby, but we have an even bigger problem on our hands.”
“What can be bigger than that Sam?”
“That girl wants revenge in a major way for the death of her mama. And I’ll tell you this much, if we don’t keep her on the right path, she will get it at the point of a gun.” Sam tells him point blank.
“How do you know? She could very well just curl up and disappear. She may even just turn that flash drive over to whoever offers the best deal. Sam, there is no way that the munchkin
will go after the killers of her mama with a gun; it’s just not in her I tell ya’.”
“You would be so wrong there my friend. I know more about what is going in that pretty little head of hers than she does. Trust me on this, please.” At Sam’s pleading look Bobby gave in. The fact that his longtime partner was pleading with him to back her like this told him not to question her.
“Ok, Samantha, I’ll back you on this, but I want to know why you feel this way first. Do we have a deal? If not I take that flash drive to Marshal Rose, and let her handle this mess.” Bobby was going to get to the bottom of all this secrecy surrounding his partner and that young girl. He didn’t care if Sam or Kristine weren’t born girls. He didn’t care about Sam once being in the Witness Protection Program, or that Kristine was going into it. As it was they would probably never see Kristine after the trial. She would become someone else’s responsibility.
“You remember when I tell you why I hate Toledo this morning?” Bobby nods his head yes. “This isn’t O’Hara’s, but will do. First, though we need to feed the kid, and ourselves. There is a Papa J’s just down the road about a half mile from here, or there was twelve years ago. Why don’t you slip out and get us a couple of thin crust supreme?”
“Sure, no problem, but do think the munchkin will eat thin crust supreme pizza?”
“Bobby, she may be a new girl, but she is still a teenager. Trust me, when she sees pizza, she’ll eat it, no matter what kind it is. Now get going, I am hungry myself. I am sure that bottomless pit you call a stomach is empty as well. After all none of us have eaten anything today and it’s going on six pm.”
“Ok, you’re right, but when I get back I want that explanation.”
“Tonight after the munchkin has gone to bed. I figure that she’ll be out like a light ten minutes after she eats something.”
“You got yourself a bet. I say she stays awake for at least twenty minutes.” And with that Bobby holstered his 1911, slipped on his jacket, grabbed his keys, and headed out the door. He was no sooner gone than Sam sat back in the couch to relax. As her eyes closed she let her mind drift back over time to twelve years ago.
To the first time she stayed in this very room. The beds, TV’s, and furniture may have changed, but the room was still the same. She was still trying to pass herself off as a boy for her father and family. The more she let her mind wonder back to that time the more she is forced to remember what had brought her here to this hotel room. Even now, after twelve long years, she can still see the bodies of her family lying in the middle of the living room floor at 1125 White Sails court, Toledo, Ohio.
Her father Marko Julien Capizeo, lay dead from a bullet to the back of the head. Her mother Mary Elisabeth draped over her two sisters, Lisa Mary and Jessica Elisabeth both were in their nightgowns. All three shoot dead in the same manner as her father. She could still see the blood pooling besides their bodies as the two thugs sent to kill them all ram shacked the house. She was still dressed in her Stephaney clothes after a few hours out at the Turnaround. She knew who they were by the sounds of their voices. They had even had dinner with her family in the past. She knows the two killers as Marko ‘two fingers’ Accardo, and Carmine ‘Lefty’ DiFronzo.
Even after all this time she can still feel her father’s gun in her hand. She can still smell the cordite of the burned gun powder, feel of the recoil, and sound of the shots that kill the two men. Her father may have been a member of the local mob, but there was no reason for those men to kill her mother and sisters. Her memories take her that fear filled time in her life. And the promise she made, as Joseph Capizeo over the dead bodies of her family. Blood would be answered with blood. That was what she wanted, but being only fifteen at the time she could not buy more ammunition legally, and no one on the black market would sell to her. It was a hard lesson for her.
No one would help her get her revenge. More than a few were willing to turn her over to the Organization for the bounty on her head though. She found that out after someone she thought was a friend tried to do just that on the second day she had been on the run. Two million dollars, that’s what the local mob boss put on her head. Just because she killed his son after he killed her family. She never told Dorothy what she had done that night and she made sure no one would ever find the gun she used to do it. Lake Erie is a good place for making things disappear.
Dorothy may have become like family to her, along with the other four deputies that help protect her during that time, but that was one secret she would take to her grave. She had killed that night over twelve years ago not out of a sense of justice, but for revenge. Whenever she thinks about that hated night she feels dirty, and she learned a long time ago that no matter how many showers or baths she takes that feeling will never go away. It was that feeling that drove her to work so hard, fight tooth and nail, to become a Deputy U.S. Marshal.
It is that feeling and the nightmares of that night that makes her push herself so hard in her job. A lot of her fellow deputies say she is over-compensating for her size and sex. Some say she is just trying to do her job, but most say she is just a cast iron stone cold cunt of a man hating dike. None of them say this to her face though, because no matter what they think about her, she does get the job done.
Now though she is going to have to face her demons and come clean about her past with the one person she trust more than any other if she is going to keep Kristine from repeating her mistakes. Sam heard the toilet flush and the door to the bathroom open. Opening her eyes Sam looked over as Kristine came into the living room area of the hotel suite. She watched as the young girl immediately scanned the room looking first for Bobby, then any threats. Sam could already tell that Kristine had the makings of a good cop or investigator.
With what she has already done with her own investigation of the LOG and her father the former CDM for Ohio has proven that. Now, all Sam had to do was make sure she used these raw skills in the legal way. From what this girl has already said she is deadlier with a smart phone than Sam was with a gun. Sam knew that Kristine was a USDA grade A1 hacker, and she should know. Bobby and her had tracked down seven of the top criminal hackers in the US and put them behind bars. Sam really wanted to see what Kristine could do with a real laptop or p.c. in her hands. Then again maybe not if Kristine could crack as secure a server as the LOG had with just a few clues from her father’s effects. Sam really didn’t want to let Kristine lose on the world with one of Services mainframes backing her up.
“Um…Sam where did Bobby go?” Kristine asked Sam with a look of concern on her face; as if she was afraid he would not come back.
“I sent him to get us all something to eat. I hope you like thin crust supreme pizza.”
“So long as it’s not from Little sleaze balls I’m good. I hope he brings back either Papa J’s or Donato’s. Now those are some really good pizza joints. I really love Donato’s meat lovers’ calzones. They come with three different types of salami, three types of pepperoni, four types of sausage, and three types of ham. All that is covered in the signature saws, flooded into garlic bread dough that is just to die for. Every time I get one of those I have to spend an extra two hours in the gym, but it’s worth it.” Kristine was finally starting to relax and act like a typical teenager.
“If you think I am going to let that knuckle head partner of mine pay good money for Little sleaze balls girlfriend think again. He knows better than to go to one of those joints. I love my pizza too much to call those things they put out pizza. The first time and the last time Bobby came back with some pizza from one of those joints I almost shot him. The only thing that stopped me was haven to fill out the paperwork for an officer involved shooting.” When Kristine heard this she giggled. She could just see this fiery little woman debating on wether to shoot her partner or not over the wrong pizza. The more she thought about this the harder she giggled until she just couldn’t get the thought out of her head and was laughing herself silly and out of breath.
Once the girl had regained control and stopped laughing, see saw Sam smiling at her. “It is good to hear you laugh Kristen. You should do it more often. Look I know that right now you don’t feel like laughing and I don’t blame you. You haven’t had a lot to laugh about lately, and it is going to get harder over the next few months. However I need you to do me a favor, no let me correct that. I want you to do yourself a favor. No matter how bad it gets, how down you feel, how mad you get, I want you to give up your idea of getting revenge for your mama.” Sam holds up her hand and stops Kristine from saying anything. Thankfully for Sam Kristine stays quiet. “Look, I know you want to get the people who killed your mama, but there is a right way and a wrong way. Now, which way would your mama want you to do it?”
“Mama would want me to do it the right way. But what is the right way and what is the wrong way?”
“The right way is letting the law enforcement agencies and the court systems do their jobs. It may take them time as the wheels of justice turn but they always get their man. Those who are responsible for your mama’s death will be caught. When they are caught, those wheels will grind them into dust. The one thing you must remember is that killing them will not bring your mama back. That flash drive you have hanging from your necklace is just as deadly as a gun right now, but only in the right hands. Those hands are not yours. Now, it’s up to you what you want to do with it. Neither Bobby or me will make that decision for you.”
The young girl sat down beside Sam placing her hands in her lap at first. She reach slowly for the flash drive that has been hanging around her neck for so long it had become a part of her. Even when they had thrown her into that cell for four weeks she found a way to make sure it was safe. Every time her father had one if his techs try to access it they would upload the kill virus. If it hadn’t been for Marshal Rose your father would still have it. Her pleading of there being pictures of her mama on it had moved Rose to have it returned. As much as she hated it, she knew she had done all she could with the information on her flash drive, it was time to turn things over to the professionals.
“If I give this to you Sam, and that is a big if, what are you going to do with it?”
Sighing Sam knew that Kristine was going to ask that question. As much as she hated it, the only way to keep Kristine safe and put the people who forced her to this point, was to do the one thing she hated. She knew that she had no easy way to tell her. So she was going to be honest with her.
“Kristine, I will take that flash drive to Marshal Rose and turn it over to her. Before you ask of all the people outside of Bobby, her and my boss David Earp, I trust them the most. If any one will know what to do with that information it is her. You have to trust me on this Kristine she’ll do the right thing.” Sam could see that Kristine wasn’t to hip to the idea of just turning over the only real insurance she had. “If you don’t trust me then make a copy of the flash drive, keep the original, and we will turn over the copy. How does that sound?”
“I think I like that idea better.” She said with a smile on her face. “I do want to make one change though. Instead of just giving a copy to Marshal Rose we give one to all of the Federal agencies. That way everyone gets a chance at the LOG and the criminals they are hiding.”
“Ok, but you know what that will mean don’t you?” Kristine just shook her head no. “What it means that everyone from the FBI to your great aunt Sadie are going to want you to be their primary witness. They’ll drag you in front of every judge, jury, and T.V. camera out there. If we do it your way that’s what you’ll get. Now if we drop the copies into the mail to the heads of those agencies, then nobody knows who sent them or where they came from. That way we keep you nice and safe, and the Justice Department has everything they need to tear apart the LOG. How does that sound?”
“Ok, we’ll do it that way. I like your idea of sending it to them all through the mail while I keep the original flash drive. When I make the copies I’ll be sure to decrypt them and remove the killer virus.” Kristine was smiling at the idea of being able to go after all the ones who killed her mother, but not putting herself in the direct line of fire. “Can we send a few to the press as well?”
“Only after, the LOG is in custody. We do that before then and it can ruin any case they build against the LOG party.” Sam got up off the couch and stretched. She could feel the weight of this detail already getting to her, and it was only the first day. “Lesson up kiddo, I forgot to tell you there are a few rules around here. Now, before you go getting all ‘anti-authority’ teen on me, hear me out. These rules are for your protection. Rule one, if Bobby or I tell you to do something in a hurry, just do it. Rule two, don’t ever open that door. I don’t care who is on the other side of it. You let me or Bobby do that. Rule two leads to rule three, if someone knocks on that door you hide your little ass in the back bedroom. Now, rule four is only to be used if we tell you. There is an emergency escape window back there, if we tell you to run you use it. Once you’re out head for the twenty third street catholic church. When you get there go to the backdoor and knock four times then wait ten minute and knock four times again. Now whatever you do if we tell you to run, you do not talk to anyone while on your way to the church. Do you understand so far?”
“Good, now when you are there you do whatever the priest tells you, he’ll keep you safe until we get there.” Sam could tell that Kristine was frightened by what she just told her. “Look that is only going to happen if this whole thing goes sideways. Another thing, if you should ever get separated from me and Bobby I want you to head there. You can trust the priests of that church. You just tell them that I sent you, and they’ll look after you as if you’re their baby sister.”
“Why should they do that? Would protecting me put them in harm’s way?”
“Let’s just say they have more reason to treat you that way than most. After all they are your T-sisters and love the Turnaround.” This cuased Kristine to have a massive giggle fit. One that was still going when Bobby returned with the pizzas.
“Did I miss something while I was gone?” at his question both Sam and Kristine broke out laughing. Bobby stood there thinking about the two of them, and came to one conclusion.
“It has to be the hormones. They make them crazy.”
------------------------------To be continued---------------------
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