Italian loafers clack against the empty walkway of Parizska street. Street lamps light the way as Frankie peaks over his shoulder. Pale and sweating bullets. Frankie steps inside a phone booth in old town. Closing the doors shut behind him. Frankie puts his back against the phone while pulling at the black tie of his suit. Taking deep breaths to calm himself, he looks around the street through the glass of the booth.

“You're okay. It's okay Frankie boy. You can get through this just like everything else.”

Flipping around, Frankie rips at the inside of his blazer. Tearing away a small piece of cloth from the bottom. He sticks his fingers into the small hole pulling out an electronic device. Knocking the phone from the hook, He bashes it against the metal tray that holds the phone book. Removing the plastic from the bottom he sticks the device into it, taking special care to attach each colored wire to its designated location. Jamming the plastic bottom of the phone back over his device. Frankie slides two quarters into the phones coin slot and dials a fourteen digit number.

The phone rings for a beat, then a female voice on the other end answers saying. “Operations. Identification.”

“Public line, repeat public line. I need transferred to private line seven. Patch me through to central. Identification, F.A. Zero nine alpha three charlie echo prime.”

“Confirmed, line transfer to private operations line seven.”

A loud click echoes across the phone line proceeded by silence for a beat. The dial tone returns with a second click and a man answers. “Frank? Is that you frank?”

“It's me, Harry. What the fuck man. Did you know you were sending us into hell?”

“I don't understand. Frank try to calm down. You aren't making any sense.”

“They...they. I think they're all dead.”

“Who? Who's dead Frank?”

“The team Harry. The whole team. I don't think a single one made it out of there.”

“Frank. Calm down. Were you followed?”

Looking around Parizska street through the glass panes of the booth for a beat. Frank takes a deep shaky breath then says. “I don't think...No. I'm clear.”

“Alright. Try to think Frank. What happened. Are you sure they're dead? What about the mission Frank. Did you accomplish the mission?”

“I'm sure of it.”

Silence fills the line for a beat, then Harry asks. “...And the mission.”


“You have the files?”

“We retrieved them right before the ambush. Maybe we set off the alarm. I, uh. I just don't know.”

“Stay with me here Frankie. Lets get you out of there. You can fill in the details in your full report.”

“Understood. Where can I expect pickup?”

“Head to Charles bridge. Walk across on foot to the local market across the river. I'll be waiting for you personally at the only 24 hour coffee shop.”

“Did you say personally sir?”

“I did. I'm in the area for my own mission. So to speak. Rendezvous within ETA one hour agent?”

“Sir, yes sir.”

With a click the line goes back to a normal dial tone. Frankie removes the device from the bottom of the phone, tosses it to the floor and smashes it under his heel. Pulling a gun from a hidden holster on the small of his back. Frank slides the clip out and checks the remaining bullets. Three in the clip, one in the chamber. Sliding the clip back into the gun, Frankie locks it back in its holster. Determination striking his features. Frankie steps out of the booth and dashes down the street towards Charles bridge.

Jogging from shadow to shadow, Frankie peaks around or into every corner, window, shop, car, or any place that could hide an individual. Within thirty minutes he makes it to Charles bridge. The stone bridge is hardly lit at night, but also very open with a lack of cover. Nervously Frankie strides across with a decent pace to the other side. Descending the bridge back into town, it doesn't take long to find the coffee shop. The only place for miles with smoke rising from it's stack, and more then the bare minimum of lighting needed to fill a space.

Stopping a street away from the coffee shop, Frankie slips inside an alleyway between streets. The dark alley way gives light to a ladder leading up higher. Exactly what he was looking for. Sneaking up top to get a higher vantage point. Frank stops at the edge of the roof across from the coffee shop. Taking out a small pair of binoculars to get a better look inside, he spots Harry patiently waiting sipping on some tea. Noting his location with a small pen and note pad.

Frankie continues surveying the room spotting a large mans lower torso. Dressed in a gray suit he appears to be reading the news paper. Writing this down, he spots a third individual. A woman with darker clothes sitting next to a counter talking to someone. Noting all four individuals within the coffee shop. Frankie puts his note pad and binoculars away, then descends the ladder back into the alleyway. Running around into the main street with the coffee shop, Frankie slows to a walk and catches his breath.

Calm and collected. Frankie walks into the coffee shop and sits down in the chair across from Harry.

“You were almost late.” Harry says over his cup of tea.

“It's easy to get lost on these winding streets. Wouldn't you agree?”

Smiling, Harry picks up a small scone and takes a bite saying. “Oh, absolutely. So. Frank. Tell me. You've got the data right?”

Grinning Frankie waves over the woman talking to a tall man behind the counter asking. “Excuse me, a coffee please. Black.” Turning back to Harry, Frankie pulls out a metallic red flash drive. “Right here.”

The man behind the counter turns around to pour the cup of coffee as Frankie reaches back to scratch the small of his pack while placing the flash drive down on the table. Flashing glances between the woman, and the man in gray behind his paper. Frankie flips the safety off his gun and flips the table on Harry. Drawing his gun faster then the man in gray, Frankie places a bullet right in his throat. Kicking his chair behind him. Frankie drops to a knee and pops a shot off into the woman's back. The man behind the counter drops to the ground, and comes back up with a shotgun.

Rolling backwards behind the open entrance of the shop away from the pellet spray, Frankie lunges forward across the opening. Missing his first shot, he lands the second. Hitting the man right in the forehead, spraying the wall behind him.

Stopping short of the next wall. Frankie points his gun to Harry on the ground saying. “Now...It's your turn.”

Holding his hands up in fear. Harry shouts. “No. Don't!”

Frankie pulls the trigger. Nothing. Pulling the trigger a second time opens the chamber revealing nothing inside. Looking at the gun. Frankie says. “Shit.” Then looks down at Harry.

Struggling to take his own gun out, Harry kicks the table away from him and tries to stand. Frankie throws his empty gun into Harries face then lunges at him. Harries gun goes flying off away from them into the street as the two wrestle inside the shop for a beat. Harry proves himself strongest. Getting the advantage over Frankie, Harry hits him with a hard right hook. Scrambling away, Harry kicks Frankie in the chest and scurries for the gun.

Grabbing a piece of wood from one of the broken chairs. Frankie rolls and pushes himself up off of the ground. Lunging forward. Harry turns around just in time for the piece of wood to impale him in the chest.

Coughing up blood, Harry drops the pistol saying. “Why...Frank?” His body spasms for a few seconds and more blood flows from his mouth. “D. Data. The data. Frank.”

Standing over Harry, Frank undoes his dress shirts top button. Pulling at the skin on his lower neck, Frank rips the skin off his face. Revealing it to be nothing more then an elaborate latex mask with a voice modulator glued to his throat. Still in Franks voice, the man says. “Oh. I would not worry about such a thing. The drive never had any real data on it. Just a backup. If I should fail.” Tearing the voice modulator off. He continues in a thick German accent. “Yes you see. Your crew. Team. I should say. They have been dead for days Harry. Well...all except Frank. No we tortured him for days before he. Uh. Expired. Then, I Hans got to play the part. Ooh. Exciting. No?”

Harry rips and grabs at Hans arm while he kneels down to pick up the gun next to him. Standing back up, he shoots Harry in the head. Pulling out a white cloth, Hans wipes down Harries gun and places it into the hands of the man in the gray suit. Picking up his gun and the flash drive. Hans takes out a cell phone and makes a quick call.

“Yeah...It's done.” Standing there listening for a few beats he continues. “Consider mission as a complete success.” Closing his phone, Hans puts it back in his pocket. Walking away with a whistle into the night.

July 09, 2020 18:33

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13:48 Jul 18, 2020

interesting story, fast-paced, like watching the movie


Ben K
15:41 Jul 18, 2020

Thank you very much. That's exactly what I was going for. It's good to know I succeeding in conveying that feeling.


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