Fiction Mystery Crime


By Professor Alan Dale Dickinson

Charlie, Sarge and the new Undersheriff Robert (Bob) Peterson rolled up to a co-op (similar to a Condo) located at number 666 Calle Aragon in lovely LWV (Laguna Woods Village). The undersheriff joined them at Sarge’s request.

The undersheriff works directly under the great Orange County Sheriff and Chief Coroner, Don Barnes and also is second in command of the entire OCSD (Orange County Sheriff’s Department).

Charlie and Sarge wanted Bob to get a first-hand look at the beautiful community that all of a sudden, after 60 years, is having a rash of ‘shooting’ for some strange and unknown reason.

Bob by the way, Sarge told Charlie, “Bob is very well thought of by all of the rank and file OCSD personnel. Also, he is a career Law Enforcement officer and has been quite successful at every post that he has served on.”

Charlie said to Sarge and Bob, “I don’t like this address number ‘666’, not one little bit. It gives me the creeps, it really does.” Earlier Sarge had got a call from OCSD Dispatch in Santa Ana that someone at this address was brandishing a weapon.

The Dispatch Officer said that he was afraid that there may be another ‘shooting’ in Laguna Woods Village. And that there had been several lately out there. Right after that earlier call, Charlie, Sarge, and Bob were on the scene in less than 60 seconds.

Even from the outside, the co-op at number ‘666’ looked ‘dark and foreboding’ to the three investigators. Charlie said to the other two men, “It looks like death to me, for some reason.”

Then he added, “Sarge, you and Bob watch your backs.” Charlie noticed that it was very quiet, eerily quiet, in other words, way, way too quiet for Charlie’s taste.

They started to carefully, very carefully, walk up to the front door. Then Charlie, said to Bob, “Can you cover the rear for us?” And Bob immediately, faster than a speeding bullet, had his 40 Caliber Glock automatic pistol drawn from his custom- made leather shoulder holster (that he bought on one of his shopping trips to Tijuana, Mexico) in his right hand and also a .357 Smith and Wesson revolver in his left hand.

The undersheriff had worked in some very rough areas ‘back in the day’ and he knew how to get down when he had too. Sarge pulled out his .45 Caliber auto with a 15 round ammo clip.

Charlie removed his .44 Magnum Smith and Wesson (the Clint Eastwood Dirty Harry gun of choice). Also, he had a Marine K-Bar knife in his belt, in case of any hand to hand combat with whoever was in there.

Just as Charlie and Sarge got to the front door, Charlie heard a little click, which to his keen ear, sounded just like a shotgun hammer being pulled back.

Then 30 seconds later, just a heartbeat so to speak, Charlie and Sarge, heard a ‘shotgun’ blast which went B

bam, bam. That meant that it was a double-barreled shotgun and the perp fired both barrels in very rapid succession.

One second earlier and both of them would have been ‘toast,’ if you know what I mean. But Charlie had just thrown Sarge into the planter full of soft bushes just to the right of the front door with the madman behind it with his old faithful shotgun.

They landed right under the address on the side of the co-op which when they both looked up showed the spooky address, ‘666’. Charlie felt a shiver go up his spine while he was hiding in the little planter with Sarge.

Some of the shotgun pellets hit Charlie in his upper left shoulder and arm and a few hit his big thick neck. Sarge was shot also, he was hit in his left arm and his back.

Thank Abba, neither were wounded very badly, but another trip to the ER at the wonderful St. Jude Medical Center in Fullerton, California with the great and caring Dr. Anne was still in order.

Charlie found out from a local real estate agent, that the co-op at 666 Calle Aragon in Laguna Woods Village is always either vacant and/ or for sale. And it has been that way for the past 55 years.

Charlie said to Sarge, “Not hard to figure that one out old man. That number is bad mojo or bad karma or both, if you know what I mean.” Sarge just nodded his head because he knew exactly what Charlie was saying.

Then he replied after a few moments, “Sarge, do you think that the number 666 has some Biblical reference in this case and at this residence?” Charlie responded that the nice and very sharp real estate lady had said to him, “Yes, Charlie perhaps it does, if you believe in that sort of thing?”

Charlie said to the realtor, “Yes, actually I do believe in that sort of thing. I think that is the reason why I am still alive and kicking today, is because of that sort of thing.”

After Charlie got up from being shot with the shotgun blast, one blast had hit him and the other blast had hit Sarge, he got mad, real mad, and then he got even madder.

He yelled at Sarge, “I am sick and tired of being shot at for no good reason.” Then he kicked open the front door of the co-op which now had a gaping hole right in the middle of it from the two shotgun blasts.

The low down-dirty shotgun-shooter, as it turns out, was a highly bi-polar former Entertainment Director for the property management company LMS, Inc. (Laguna Woods Management Services, Inc.).

He was a tall man, about 6’4” and around 69 years old. And he was a little bit unstable, well a lot unstable, when off of his meds, according to Charlie.

Later on, the shooter said that he thought that Charlie and Sarge were Russian FSB (formerly KGB) agents. Charlie asked Sarge, “Do you think that we look like foreign Russian agents?”

Sarge quickly replied, “I don’t think I do, but I think that you do Charlie.” And then he had a big belly laugh and added, “Just kidding Charlie, you don’t really look like a KGB Ruskey.”

Then Sarge laughed even louder, and said, “Alright, no, you don’t look like a Russian, but you do look like a very suspicious character.” And laughed some more. Charlie said to him, “I am so happy that you have me to make fun of, someone else might be offended by your silly jokes.”

Charlie and Sarge love to tease each other even though they are best of friends. Just like Crockett and Tubbs in the hit 1984 Miami Vice TV show. Charlie thinks that he gets the best of Sarge in their battering back and forth.

While Sarge thinks that he comes out on top most of the time. It’s probably a ‘toss-up’ if you ask me. Charlie wins half of the time and Sarge wins the half.

Later, the undersheriff put the shotgun kid in the back of his ‘black and white’ Chevy Tahoe SUV, which had a big block ‘police interceptor’ 454 c.i. V-8 engine, and swished the shooter off to the OCSD Leo Lacy Jail.

Charlie told Sarge that he was very glad that the Bob had been with them at the shooting also for his help in getting rid of the criminal so quickly. The perp will face some serious time for attempting to kill an OCSD deputy as well as a civilian.

Unless they send him to the mental ward at UCI (University of Irvine Medical Center), of course.

So, Charlie said, “It’s sad, but ole number ‘666’ is once again up for sale. The neighbors forced the estate and the relatives of the shooter to sell it. They wanted to get a new neighbor, one who does not wave a shotgun in their faces.”

“I wonder,” Charlie to Sarge, “Do you know anybody who is interested in buying a haunted house?” Sarge spit back, very quickly, “No Charlie I don’t and certainly I would not want to live at that 666 (mark of the beast) address.”

Then he added, “I would, however, love to live in lovely Laguna Woods Village someday when I get old like you Charlie.” Charlie’s response, “Funny Sarge, very, very, funny.”

Later on, Sarge said that it was, “he who shoved Charlie to the ground thus saving his life and not the ‘other’ way around. You know our man Charlie he tends to exaggerate a little bit (or a lot) every now and then.”

January 03, 2022 14:51

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