brit_columbia (brit_columbia) wrote,

FAKE First Year Together: A New Day (May) ch 24

FAKE First Year Together: A New Day (May)

chapter 24 

Pairing:  Dee/Ryo 

Fandom: FAKE 

Rating:    Worksafe.   

Spoilers:   To Volume 7 

Timing: Set in May directly after Book 7 ended 

Summary:  Ryo is coming to terms with the changes in his relationship with Dee, as well as his new sexual identity. Meanwhile, Dee and Ryo are trying to find enough evidence to expose a crooked cop. This story explores homophobic attitudes but is primarily a love story between two men. 

Disclaimer:   I do not own Dee, Ryo, Bikky, Carol, JJ, Drake, Ted, Marty, the Chief, the Commissioner, Diana, and any of the people who appeared in the manga books.  They are the property of Sanami Matoh.  However, I have created some extra characters.  The Abernathy family is mine, as are Ned Shaver and Eddie Calvetti I am not making any money from this. 

Author's notes:   Sorry, but Ryo and Dee don't put in an appearance at all in this chapter.  The other characters are all busy doing things necessary to advance the plot.  If it's any consolation, we are  slowly working our way toward a lemon, but we have to let Dee recover somewhat first.  Also, I just want to remind those who might have forgotten that Eddie also goes by the name Karl.  Mike and his son always call him Karl, but Dee, Ryo, Bikky and Carol call him Eddie,

Thank you to bluesimplicity and  mtemplar for all your invaluable help.

FAKE First Year Together: A New Day (May)

Chapter 24 

Bikky hurried furtively toward his apartment building and glanced up at his and Ryo's windows.  Good.  It looked just the way he had left it.  The light was on in his bedroom, but Ryo's room and the living room were still in darkness, save for the pale blue flicker of the TV.  He let himself into the building and all but ran up the stairs.  It wouldn't do to be seen coming in at this time by any of the neighbors in case they mentioned it to Ryo.  He quietly unlocked the apartment door and, once safely inside, his first thought was to go to the phone to see if Ryo had left any messages.  Shit!  He had.  There were two in the call display from his foster dad's cell phone number.  He quickly looked at the timestamps.  Whew.  The first call was fifteen minutes ago and the second one only five minutes ago.  He could claim he had been in the john or something.  But then he was arrested by a thought:  what the hell was Ryo doing calling at this time of night anyway?  It was close to one AM.  Ryo had told him he would be home late and not to wait up.  But on the other hand it WAS Friday night, so maybe Ryo expected him to still be awake.  He certainly would not have expected him to be taking his grounded ass on a train to Queens and back.  But when Carol had called with the details of the completed eBay sale, it had been immediately apparent that Eddie was going to need those pots and pans ASAP.  Ryo's fortuitous departure had made everything easier.  Bikky had been out the door with the cookware set as soon as he'd seen Dorkhead drive off like a maniac with a rocket strapped to his ass.  He sure hoped he hadn't been spotted.  He could just imagine some cop friend of Ryo's giving him a call to say, "Hey I think I just saw your son out wandering the streets past midnight..." Maybe he was being paranoid. The phone messages would in all likelihood reveal whether Ryo knew he had been out or not. 

But when he listened to the first message, he almost fell out of his chair. 

"Bikky, it's me.  Dee and I ran into a bit of trouble tonight and I'm at the hospital with him now.  They want to keep him overnight, so I'm going to try and stay here with him, unless they decide they're gonna kick me out.  You can't phone me back because I'm supposed to keep my cell phone off in patient care areas, but I'll try again in a little while.  Dee's gonna be okay, by the way.  It was a real close call but his famous luck kicked in once again.  Talk to you soon." 

What the fuck?  Dee was in hospital and they were keeping him overnight?  What the hell happened?  Bikky checked the second message.   

"It's me again, B.  I'm really sorry if these two calls have woken you up. I just want to let you know that they've found me a cot so I'm definitely going to be away all night.  I need to go to sleep now, so you won't be able to call me back.  I'll give you a shout in the morning.  Love you." 

Bikky was glad he was sitting down.  Most of the time he was able to put the more dangerous aspects of Ryo's work out of his head.  It wasn't hard to do since Ryo and Dee didn't discuss harsh case details in his presence and always seemed to be complaining about more mundane things like paperwork and meetings and not being able to scrape up enough clues to solve their cases. But once in a while there was something like that crazy teacher who had shot Dee and blown up the school or that serial killer who had grabbed Carol.  At each of those times, it had been like a wake up call, a dark reminder that, since his childhood, death had always been a silent stalker on the edges of his life and would never be far away. He had lost so many people he cared about, and so had a lot of the individuals around him. Ryo and Dee were both orphans, as was Carol.  His friend Jim had had an elder sister who had been killed by a hit and run driver when he was still a little kid in kindergarten.  There was a girl in his class whose mother was dying of cancer, and she was quiet and sad all the time.  Apart from his friend Dave, just about everyone he knew had lost someone.  Bikky hoped Dave's turn was not coming.  He wondered what it must be like to grow up with all your family around you, and no dangerous events or scary people reaching out to steal your happiness and security when you least expected it. 

The living room seemed dark and full of strange shadows all of a sudden, and the chatter of the television offered no comfort. He had no way to get in touch with Ryo, who hadn't even said which hospital they were at. He suddenly felt very alone, and his thoughts took a macabre turn.  Was this what it would be like if they were all dead, Ryo, Dee and Carol?  A dark, lonely apartment with only the TV to remind him that he was still a part of humanity?  And Death watching him from a dark corner, whispering, You're next... He was shaking a little and he suddenly realized that he was freaking himself out with these thoughts.  You're not a little kid anymore!   he told himself furiously.  Don't be stupid. Get it together.   

His mind went back to Carol.  Maybe she wouldn't mind if he called her, on her cell phone of course.  He sure needed someone to talk to. 

Carol came awake slowly to the realization that her pillow was vibrating.  She found she was holding onto it tightly with both hands because in her mentally fuzzy state, she imagined it had a motor on it and was trying to take off and fly around the room.  When she was awake enough to understand that it was only her cell phone, which had found its way between the two pillows on her bed, she picked it up and peered at the call display.  It was Bikky!  What time was it -- one a.m.?  Quickly, she answered. 

"Bikky?"  Her voice was soft so as not to wake up her aunt, who was sleeping downstairs with her boyfriend Wayne. 

"Yeah it's me.  Sorry to call so late."  His voice sounded unusually subdued. 

"You know you can call me anytime, Bikky-bear, except during class of course.  Are you okay?" 

"Yeah.  Well, basically."  Bikky felt better already from the concern in her voice and the endearment, which thank God, she never used whenever anyone else was around.  Ever since that incident with the bear at camp a couple of years ago, her pet name for him had been Bikky-bear.  He thought it was silly, but he couldn't help kind of liking it.  

"You sure?  Because you don't usually call me at this time of night." 

"Well, I got a couple of messages from Ryo.  Something happened to Dee and they're at the hospital." 

"What?" Carol sat bolt upright in bed.  "Are they okay? What happened?" 

"I don't know.  Ryo said Dee had been lucky and that he had to stay overnight.  Ryo is staying too, but he's not a patient and Dee is.  I don't know more than that." 

"Well, didn't you talk to him?" 

"No, I couldn't because he called when I was out meeting Eddie.  And in his first message, he said he had to turn his cell off because of hospital rules or something, so I can't call him back.  I wish I could talk to him." 

"How did he sound?" 

"Normal.  Tired.  I don't know.  I don't even know which hospital." 

"Oh Bikky, I'm so sorry.  I guess we'll have to wait until morning.  But they're probably okay.  I mean, at least it was Ryo who called you and not a nurse or a cop." 

"Yeah, that's true.  I probably shouldn't worry, but..." 

"I know," she said soothingly.  "We can't help it, can we?  But I bet you everything's gonna be okay.  I know it will!  And I'll be over first thing to keep you company until Ryo gets home.  I'll make us something good for breakfast, 'kay?" 

"Thanks.  That'll give me something to look forward to.  It's kinda lonely around here tonight." 

"Hey, how's Eddie?  Did you give him my message about the sale?" 

"Yeah, I did.  Bam's restaurant in Queens Village, nine-thirty a.m.  Two hundred fifty cash, right?" 

"Yeah.  That's what she said in her email.  I guess she wants to use those pots and pans in her restaurant. I hope it all goes as planned and Eddie doesn't make a bad impression or anything. Sometimes he doesn't smell so good, you know?" 

"Yeah I know.  He's better whenever he's staying in a place that has a shower. He could really use that money right now. It sure was lucky we didn't have to mail the pots anywhere." 

"Well, I'm just glad we could help Eddie out."  Carol yawned.  "Listen, Bikky-bear, I've got to say good night if I'm going to come over and cook in the morning.  You just go to bed and don't worry about anything, all right?  Don't stay up late watching TV or anything." 

"I'll try.  I won't do any gaming either.  I'm tired from traveling over to Queens and back anyway.  It's a good thing Eddie met me at the station.  See you in the morning, okay?" 

"You bet." 

"Don't come late, okay?" 

"Silly!  You're the one who's always late for everything, not me.  I'll be there about nine or so.  Night!" 

"Night."  Bikky hung up feeling relieved.  She was right. Everything was going to be fine.  Dee probably had just banged himself up a little and was being a big baby and that was why Ryo had to stay with him.  Eddie was going to score some cash tomorrow, and he felt good about having been able to help his friend.  Best of all, Carol was coming to see him in the morning and she was going to cook for him.  Maybe sleep wasn't such a bad idea. 


Eddie was grateful to his aunt Rosa for letting him take a shower, and although she wouldn't let him use her washing machine to wash his clothes, she had been kind enough to furnish him with some new ones.  The jeans were a little big for him, but he didn't really mind.  She had let him have his uncle's old belt to hold them up, and that had pleased him more than anything. Things were definitely looking up. He'd been able to reclaim his newly charged spare cell phone and laptop just before the other cell phone's battery died, so they'd be full of juice for the next couple of days.  It was good to be able to get back online again. The bulk of his stuff was safely locked up in the crawl space of the community hall attached to Rosa's church, and if his luck held, he would be on his way to Newark later today.  But first he had to meet that woman at that restaurant...what was it called?  Eddie pulled out his new spiral bound notebook.  Bam's.  Yeah, that was the place. Kitchen entrance, round the back. And what was that lady's name? Cindy.  Well, if Cindy came through with the money, he'd have enough to buy a bus ticket with some extra left over for expenses. It would be good to disappear for a while.  Recent events had been a little too stressful, even for him, and Mike was starting to freak him out, what with all those urgent phone messages he had been leaving.  Bikky's dad seemed to be quite sure that Mike was after him, and the only thing Eddie could think of was to get out of town and try to clear his head. The last few days he'd been feeling nervous all the time, like someone was watching him or something.  After living on the streets for several years, he knew better than to ignore that feeling.  Too many people with more power than he had were interested in him right now, and he wanted to give them a chance to forget about him and get busy with other things. Two or three months out of the city should do it.  Mario had put in a call for him to some friends of his in New Jersey who could apparently help him to get set up in some work when he got there. Now if he could just get this little piece of business done and get out of town without running into any more cops, he'd feel like he could maybe breathe again.

He stopped at a mailbox and dropped a package into it.  He hoped there was enough postage on it, because he hadn't felt like standing in line at the post office to get it weighed, particularly since he had just ripped off several books of stamps.  He had to make sure that his stuff was taken care of if...Well, he didn't expect anything to happen to him of course, but Eddie was a man who liked to be prepared. 

When he arrived at the address Bikky had given him, he was in no way alarmed to find it closed.  It wasn't a breakfast place, after all. Word was that Cindy would be in the kitchen doing prep for lunchtime. He proceeded down the alley next to the cafe, as he had been directed, wondering how he would know which door belonged to Bam's kitchen.  Hopefully there would be a sign for delivery people or something else that would make it clear. He fidgeted with the large box of cookware that Robbie had helped him wrap with plain brown paper earlier that morning.  It wasn't too heavy, but it was large and awkward and he would be glad to offload it onto this Cindy chick.  He hoped she had a car and wouldn't have to carry this sucker home on the subway.  Presently he came to a door that was propped open and had a sign taped to it that read,  

Bam's Kitchen

Come right in, Eddie. 


Before Eddie went in, he propped the box against the door for a minute and pulled down the sign.  She had probably only been trying to be helpful, but it made him nervous having his name on a sign that anyone could come by and read. 

"Hello?" called Eddie, turning sideways to get through the door with his box.  "Cindy, you there?  It's me, Eddie." 

He went through a short corridor lined with shelves containing restaurant supplies, and emerged into a kitchen. A pair of hands lifted the box out of his arms, moving it aside, and suddenly he found himself looking at a familiar face. 


"Why, Karl lad, what a surprise, to be sure." 

Mike seemed as friendly and relaxed as he usually did, so Eddie didn't know why he suddenly felt cold all over. 

"Mike, do you know Cindy or something?  What are you doing here?" 

"Waiting for you, boy." 

"But Cindy--" 

"There is no Cindy, Karl.  Now, don't be a slow-top."   

Eddie just blinked at him stupidly, but behind the confused expression, adrenaline was pushing his brain to work faster than usual.  No Cindy meant no $250, but the fact that Mike was here at all meant this was a set-up.  That couldn't possibly be good because there was no such thing as a good set-up.  They were all alone in here.  Had Mike really killed Tamara?  Eddie felt the freedom of the open door still at his back and considered that he was in fact between Mike and the door.  Although he didn't move a muscle, Mike must have read his intention because suddenly his smile underwent a subtle alteration, no longer friendly, no longer open.  At that moment, the quality of the light changed as the door swung shut behind Eddie.  He heard the click.  Uh-oh, this was very bad.  In all the years he had known Mike, he had never brought an accomplice to their meetings.  Just Tommy from time to time when the drop was a simple one and there were no special directions that couldn't be referred to in code.  Eddie was pretty damn sure that it wasn't Tommy who had just closed the door behind him. 

"Wh-what's up Mike?  Listen, I'm sorry I didn't return your calls.  I didn't have electricity for a while there and I couldn't charge my phone..."  

"That's a pretty full backpack you've got there.  Planning a little trip, are we?" 

"Nah, Mike, you know me.  I can't travel light and I ain't got a place to stash my stuff right now.  I was gonna use Cindy's money to get a place to stay." 

"I'll come right to the point, lad.  I want your laptop and your MP3 player and you'd better not have sold them." 

"I got 'em right here," said Eddie, patting his pack anxiously.  Maybe if he gave Mike what he wanted, the man would let him go.  

"Fetch them out then.  Hurry up, I don't have all day."  Mike's tone was brisk and cold.  He glanced at his watch and nodded toward Eddie's pack. 

Eddie hastened to swing it off his shoulders and start unpacking it.  The laptop was midway down the pack wrapped up in his pup tent for safety, whereas the MP3 player was in a side pocket. 

"My boy Tommy mentioned something about some files you like to keep of other peoples' voices," Mike said darkly.  "Can you show me an example of what he was talking about?" 

Aw fuck, thought Eddie.  Bikky's dad was right.  But aloud, he said, "Sure, no prob.  But I don't have many left, you know.  I don't keep 'em forever." 

Mike waited silently while Eddie unwrapped the laptop with trembling fingers and looked around for a suitable surface to put it on . Mike indicated one of the stainless steel counters, and moved aside while Eddie set up. 

"I don't think I have any of you," Eddie added, sincerely hoping that was true and that he hadn't missed any.  Detective McLean's warning had been weighing uneasily at the back of his mind since Thursday night, and one of the first things he had done once he got safe access to some electricity was to transfer all of his business files to the older of his two laptops.  That one was safely locked up with the rest of his stuff back at the church.   

"You just show me what you've got and don't pull any funny stuff," growled Mike.

Eddie played Mike a sound file of last night's message from Bikky, wherein Bikky let him know the good news about the potential buyer from Queens and the fact that she was willing to pay cash for a personal delivery. Then he played him another one of Thomas's voice asking him if he wanted to sell his MP3 player.   There were only about 9 or so sound files on this computer.  Eddie racked his brains trying to remember what the other messages were about, since Mike seemed to want to hear them all.  He hoped there would be nothing there that would get him into any more trouble than he was already in.  His heart leapt into his mouth when he clicked on the third sound file and they heard Bikky's dad leaving a message. 

"Eddie," Ryo's voice said, "This is Detective Randy McLean.  I'm just calling to thank you for talking to me last night and also to find out whether you've reconsidered your refusal of our offer of police protection.  I hope to hear from you, if so."  He went on to leave several phone numbers, which Eddie could contact him at if he wanted to. 

"And what's all this about, Karl?" 

Eddie didn't like the way the other man was looking at him.  There was something downright scary happening behind his eyes.  He wished that Mike would stop smiling. He couldn't remember the last time he had been this terrified. 

"It's not what you think, Mike!  His kid is a friend of mine.  The kid tracked me down and put me on the phone with his dad.  That cop told me a bullshit story about how maybe someone was trying to kill me.  But I didn't believe him and I didn't meet up with him.  You know how I feel about cops, present company excepted." 

After giving him a long assessing look through narrowed eyes, the Lieutenant suddenly fired a series of questions at him. "Are these the sum total of your files?  Do you have them backed up anywhere?  Do you have another computer?  Did you email them to anyone?" 

"No way, Mike what the hell are you saying?  We go back years, you've always been good to me.  I only do this because of my fucked up memory!  Come on, you gotta believe me."  Eddie was shaking. 

Mike suddenly seemed to relax, and spoke in a reassuring voice. "Of course, my lad, I know you didn't do this on purpose.  We've always had a good relationship, right?  But I'm warning you, this taping of people's calls and so on has got to stop, at least concerning your dealings with me.  Do you understand?  This was not the smartest thing you've ever done boy, but hell we're all young and stupid once." 

"You got it Mike, I won't do it again. I promise you." 

"And don't be talking to those two cops either!  'Police protection', my ass. They'll lock you up so fast you'll never know what hit you.  And I won't be able to get you out again so close to the last time.  You just keep your head down, okay?" 

"Okay Mike."  Eddie began to feel that maybe he wasn't about to die after all. 

"You need any money, boy?  How about that two hundred fifty you came here for? That's all I got on me."  Three crisp bills materialized in the air between them. 

"Yeah, thanks," said Eddie, reaching for it.  "I could use it.  I'll pay you back, man.  Just put it on my tab, okay?" 

Lieutenant Abernathy said, "All right, I'll be on my way, then.  But before I go, there's someone here who wants to talk to you." 

He stepped to the doorway and called softly into the shadows beyond.  "You're up, lad." 

Abernathy stepped aside as a young, thickset black man with an aggrieved expression walked through the door. 

"Rick!" gasped Eddie. 

"You killed my woman, man." 

"ME?  No way!  It was an accident.  Why would I kill Tamara?  We grew up together."  Just then Eddie noticed that Rick was holding a gun, and he froze, the relief and hope that he had been feeling a moment ago evaporating.  He understood that Rick was here to kill him, and although life was most often a sad scramble, he realized how very much he wanted to keep on living. 


Detective Shaver tramped down the narrow little alley in Queens, thinking of better ways he could've spent his Saturday morning.   The day was shaping up to be breezy, but nothing could take away the stench of piss and garbage that clung to this place.  For a moment, he allowed his mind to range longingly in search of the sea, the sharp salt air and the clean, invigorating smell of marine life and battleship fuel.  Back when he'd been a member of the US Navy, he'd been too stupid to appreciate what he had.  Now it was a rare day when he thought of anything else.

He paused on the threshold of what he presumed to be the restaurant kitchen Mike had summoned him to, his hand resting on his holstered gun.  He couldn't say why, but he suddenly felt edgy for no discernible reason.  He pushed open the slightly ajar door with a careful hand and advanced, calling for Mike in a soft voice. Three steps in and he found himself in a narrow cafe kitchen that contained two extra people he had not expected to see.  His hard eyes took in the scene with instant understanding. A young African American guy with a pattern shaved into his close-cropped hair was looking down at the crumpled form of that junkie Mike had sent him to meet the other day. He couldn't see the gun from this angle, but he was absolutely certain that the man was holding one, and furthermore, that it was fitted with a silencer, as he would've heard the shot for sure, otherwise. A pool of blood was slowly spreading out from underneath the vic's body, and Mike was standing a few paces away looking like the evil sonofabitch that he was. 

"Who the fuck are you?" snarled the man with the gun, whirling around and pointing it at Ned.  Ned's gun was suddenly in his hand, his heart pounding in his chest.  He was not afraid to die, but he'd be damned if he was going to let some two-bit punk end his life in a kitchen off a back-alley over absolutely nothing. 

"Ricky-boy, he's a friend," said Mike in a soothing tone.  "Steady there, lad." 

The man he had addressed as 'Ricky' slowly lowered his gun.  "Outta my way, asshole," he said.  "I want out of here."  He seemed shaken. 

"Give the man back his gun before you go, Rick," said Mike, causing the other two men to stare hard at him.   

When Rick hesitated, Mike said, "Go on now," in a soft voice. 

"Fuck that!"  Rick dropped the gun on top of Eddie's still form and said, "Bastard can pick it up himself."  Then he turned and disappeared through the door that Ned had come in by. 

"What the hell did you do, Mike?" asked Ned in a quiet voice, his eyes on the gun.  Yep, that was his piece all right.  The one he hadn't reported stolen. 

"One of those Dyre Devil fellows delivered this to me.  He thought I might be interested for some reason.  He and his group are none too happy about your dealings with the Stone Blood Boys.  It seems they've lost market share since you've been on board with that lot." 

Ned's eyes continued to stare at Mike with revulsion. "Why?" he spat, indicating Eddie.  "One of your 'best sellers', huh?" 

"He was, and that's a fact," said Mike with a sigh, viewing with dispassion the huddled face-down corpse between them.  "But he got a little too...independent.  In a technical kind of way, I'll have you know."  The Internal Affairs Lieutenant sounded thoughtful and vaguely surprised.  "But perhaps he did me a favor in the long run, what say? In any case, we'll have no more talk from you of going back to sea now, will we?" he added briskly. 


Lieutenant Mike Abernathy sat in his car with Karl's laptop on his knee, thinking hard.   Who knew what other damning evidence this piece of metal might hold?   Mike freely admitted to himself that he was not a man who knew his way around computers. The temptation to smash it was strong and yet its dollar value should not be forgotten.  It could probably be sold for a couple of hundred dollars.  Another of his crippling loan payments was coming due in a few days, and he needed every penny he could get his hands on.   He couldn't sell the MP3 player, as he had promised it to Tommy, but perhaps he could fob the boy off with promises of a newer model if he could wait a few months.  The cookware set would have to go to Isadora. It was just the sort of fashionable thing she liked to own, not that the woman spent much time in the kitchen.  He hoped that it would meet with her approval.  In the past year it had been almost impossible to please her, and he had to admit it had been partially his own fault.  He shook his head bitterly.  If only he had never listened to that smooth bastard, Liam Hennessy.  A 'sure investment' indeed!  Hennessy's finances had survived it, but Mike had lost his shirt and then some.  And now, with his wedding anniversary approaching on Tuesday, he had nothing to give his increasingly distant wife except this slightly battered box of cooking pots that he knew she would probably never use. 

He sighed and flipped open his phone, looking through his list of contacts for someone who would be able to sell the laptop.  Perhaps Benny Lam?  No.  That one had a tendency to skim and then lie about it.  How about Andre, the crazy Polack? But he would be just as likely to leave it sitting in the rain on a park bench as he would be to sell it. It was really too bad about Karl.  He had been the best of the lot.  But he was the one who could have brought the whole enterprise crashing down. When Mike considered that all along, his best seller had been making secret recordings of telephone conversations, not to mention that pretty damning cell phone video of him administering some much-needed discipline to Tommy, and all without his knowledge, he felt quite sick.  If not for a chance word let slip by Tommy, he might never have found out.  Disaster had been narrowly averted there. 

Or had it?  He looked at the laptop again.  Back when Karl had been so obligingly demonstrating the sound files for him, hadn't he heard a boy's voice talking briefly about a sale first thing in the morning in Queens?  At that time, he had missed the significance because he had been too distracted by the message left by Detective McLean.  Come to think of it, when he had, in his guise as Cindy, engaged in email contact with Karl, he had noticed that Karl's grammar and spelling seemed much better than usual.  Could it be that that young fool had involved one of his friends in this sale?  His body went hot with sudden anxiety and the skin of his neck flushed red under his collar.   If there were another person out there with the passwords to Karl's email address and eBay site, it could prove to be very damaging indeed.  Wouldn't it be a fine thing if that idiot junkie (God rest his soul) were able to reach out from beyond the grave to avenge his own death?   He felt a familiar burning pain start to spread through his chest.  Ah, the Good Lord was signaling His displeasure again, he thought with a sour little smile as he fumbled for some antacid tablets.  There was always a punishment;  it was the way of things.  But he wasn't wholly damned, not yet.  Someday, when he got back on his feet, he would pay a huge tithe to the church, let the devil see if he didn't!  For each death he had engineered in the course of his business dealings here, he would save ten lives in the third world.  When Judgment Day finally came around, he had an idea that the Almighty would take a fair look at the balance sheet.  After all, his intentions had been good, always good. 

But in the meantime, there was work to be done.  He would have to listen to that message again and find out that boy's name. 

end of chapter 24

Tags: a new day, fake

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