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Rated: E · Fiction · Contest Entry · #2051830
Better to hold some conversations over lunch in public.
In the yellow glare from the streetlamps, buildings cast angular shadows on the wet pavement. Avery pulled up his collar against the cold gusts shooting through the alleys. He found the address, an apartment building. The Captain lived alone. Avery found the name and pressed the button next to it. No answer. He pressed again. A voice crackled from the speaker. “Who is it?”

“It’s Avery, sir. Sorry for the late hour. It’s important.” Silence, then the speaker buzzed and the door clicked. Avery pushed it open and headed up the stairs.

Avery knocked on the door to 317. It opened. The Captain stood in a bathrobe, staring silently out. “Sorry again, Captain,” Avery said. “We can’t talk about this at the precinct.” The Captain stood aside.

The Captain led Avery into the kitchen. Avery saw a chicken drumstick and half a glass of milk on the table. The Captain sat. Avery sat across from him. “I’ll get right to the point,” Avery said. “The Four Points shooting this week. I asked around the neighborhood and everyone swears Hiller didn’t own a shotgun. The shells at the scene matched what we found at Hiller’s place, but I think it was a plant. Those guys that were gunned down? They all tie to a cocaine ring from a decade ago. I checked the records. All of the officers working the ring were involved with this Four Points investigation. Every one of them. Something’s dirty and someone high up knows about it. If that’s true, Captain, what are you going to do?” The Captain regarded Avery in silence. “Captain?” prompted Avery. “How do we handle this?” No answer. “Captain Smith?”

The Captain stood and reached into the pocket of his robe. “Well, here’s the thing,” he said. “That’s not my real name.”

(Word count: 300)
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