The Sketch that Started it all

Below is the character sketch I produced when I first got excited about the Diary of  a Contract Killer concept.  At first I intended nothing more than a few notes, but then thought to write it as if the character was talking to the reader (which did wind up in the final format (and continued for the series)).  I didn’t intend for it to run as long as it did (over 6.5K), but because it flowed so easily I gained the confidence that I could turn it into something readable.

You may notice that the tone changes somewhat (assuming you read the first couple of chapters I have online), as does the conceit that the stories are ghost written, but there are lots of the elements preserved.  I only lightly edited the prose, for instance to remove my patented runon sentences, so it’s pretty close to what I first wrote.  The few people I proudly showed it off to complained that there was no character arc, no growth, which is what caused me to elaborate on the the “Ziva” aspect and turn it into a love story.

A few chunks made it directly into the novel wholesale, but, for the most part, the information served as my own background for the character as I made creative decisions.  The other two books in the series reveal some additional parts of the sketch, so, conceptually, I probably have used it all.


Diary of a Contract Killer

Keith Alan

Feb 13, 2015

This is a ghost written document, I’m not much of a writer. I found someone who I felt I could trust and to whom I could tell stories. He could then convert our conversations into prose. I did my best to not reveal anything specific regarding dates / times / targets / etc., and then asked my writer to take liberties to further obscure events. Because he has agreed to romanticize our conversations and invent dialog wherever he thinks appropriate, nothing that follows refers to actual people or events.

I grew up with parents in the foreign service. It seemed we were always moving and I got very practiced at learning new cultures and languages. I appear to have a gift for being able to hear accents and being able to reproduce them, and have often been told I sound more authentic than the people who actually grew up in the given environment. I’m also blessed with excellent memorization skills (very handy in school, let me tell you!) so I can quickly pick up enough of a language to pass in casual conversation. I’m not terribly fluent in a lot of languages, at least what I consider fluency (to be able to carry on a conversation for hours without any mistakes), but I know enough so I can generally move around pretty much anywhere an average white guy can go without attracting undue attention.

Regarding “average”: I’m specifically well suited for my job because I have pretty much dead average looks. I’m generally totally unmemorable and that works very well to my advantage. My general “disguise” is actually to make myself more distinctive in some way. That way, any description focuses on the distinctive element rather than my average-ness. Perhaps ironically, being average in school never was a problem for me; I was always the exotic outsider and attracted a lot of attention that I enjoyed.

My childhood was, other than having to remake friends every 18-24 months, very comfortable. My parents took very good care of me and I still see them regularly. I never burdened them with my source of income; I have a cover story (several, actually, but I’ll get to that later) that entails lots of international travel. They know about my facility with language, and, coupled with my direct experience growing up, they’re very comfortable with my cover.

I joined the military as a youth. I’d always been interested in guns and the idea of being a sniper, but due to our regular movements and the wildly different legal/cultural environments we experienced, I had very little direct involvement with them as a child. It turned out that I was pretty damn good at shooting from a distance, and had no problems getting accepted into sniper school. I did well, but not anything spectacular. I did excel, though, at the scouting aspect. The ability to get in and out unnoticed with my “intel.” That got me attention from the special forces recruiters (they only recruit from the “inside,” they never recruit from civilians) and when they found out about my language skills I had my pick. As a sniper, I actually had very few kills. Of course, the average sniper might spend a decade crawling in the bush and only shoot a handful of people, so again, that doesn’t make me stand out. I did get very popular, though, regarding my ability to blend in and become essentially invisible in plain sight. That allowed me to do all sorts of scouting in urban situations, to place bugs, to observe and report (I learned to read an entire newspaper or magazine by occasional glances while surveying the area; that way if anyone asked me about an article I could give cogent responses). I enjoyed the military training, but they really aren’t looking for cold-blooded killers, they want people who actually feel something when they kill. The average sniper either has to be convinced that the specific target is a bad guy or learns to demonize the target’s group. I guess this makes them easier to control, but it seems to me that these guys are more likely to suffer PTSD and wind up living under a bridge when they get home.

Getting Started

I learned I had no problems killing people before I joined the military. Of course I didn’t tell my recruiter that! I also learned early on that I was not moved by blood and guts. As a youth, I was very close when a bomb went off in a cafe and was first on the scene to help people. Of course, back then I wasn’t aware of the “double tap” procedure (where you set off a second bomb to take out the rescuers) or I never would’ve got that close, but it was a single bomb and I found myself very level headed and with clarity of thought. I helped people, who were clearly going to die, to be a wee bit less uncomfortable in the last few moments of their life. It was amazing to me how many actually seemed to relax just before the end; I guess shock helps with that. Anyway, a friend of mine at the time had a family friend who lost someone during that event. The mother of my friend evidently had some connection to some sort of intelligence organization and I overheard her talking about how they knew exactly who was responsible, but given that person’s lofty political position, there wasn’t enough evidence to lead to an arrest, let alone a trial or conviction. I guess I wasn’t thinking about the wider implications, I just said something to the effect about taking care of things outside the court system, which seemed to attract her attention. I have had several people remark about my “killer eyes” (I have no idea what that means) and perhaps she felt that looking at me and, likely on impulse, asked me how I would take care of it. I described what I had in mind and she said she’d think it over.

It was several days later when she engineered a bit of time for us to be alone in an area where we couldn’t be overheard. She asked me if I were really serious and would I go through with it. Sure, I said, what’s the big deal? She told me where to find the target, when would be good times and to go ahead. Thinking back, I should have been surprised or shocked, but I guess kids think they’re invulnerable; I recall no thoughts at all about being unsuccessful or having any problems.

The target (at one point I made up names for the targets but found out that, I guess through Freudian slips, I was leaking information, so stopped) regularly had an evening drink on the roof of his house (in this part of the world just about everyone has flat roofs; too hot during the day, but perfect in the evenings). Since I was a kid, and since Parkour was popular at the time, I’d developed a lot of skills in running, jumping, climbing, etc. and very easily made it up to the top of the several story building. I hid amongst the potted plants on the roof until it was quite dark. The target had been having a drink with dinner, something I’d planned on, and eventually, as it cooled off, decided to head down inside the house. This was exactly what I was waiting for and as he got up and headed toward the door, I moved quietly behind him, and when he started down the first step I jumped on his back and rode him head first down the stairwell. I made quite sure his head hit as he went forward and gave his neck a bit of a twist intending for his neck to snap. It went off without a hitch (I’ve since learned that was largely a matter of luck, but of course then I was sure it was pure skill), he never even twitched after he hit. I headed back the way I came, after making sure I hadn’t accidentally left any traces, and went about my normal evening activities. The news the next day remarked about how the target had had an accidental fall and how tragic it was his political career was over. My friend’s mother was very nice to me thereafter, though we never said another word about it.

I was a teenage punk at the time and thought I was superman for handling it. I’ve since realized how lucky I was, I had no fallback plans and didn’t appreciate the risk that I could have been discovered or seen getting in or out.

Reasonably Priced

Since I knew I was a “consciousless killing machine” before I joined the military, I’d already given thought to the idea of a career killing for money. My reason for going in the military and attempting to become a special forces sniper was to get exposure to how experts did it, and develop contacts (I have subsequently worked with my friend’s mother on some other jobs; there are so many benefits to having an excellent memory). I did my hitch and was in the process of getting out when I was approached by a couple of TLAs (we collectively call them “three letter acronyms” because so many have exactly three) about coming to work for them. Since I was intent on a career on my own, I was careful to make it seem that I was no longer interested in the ‘biz. I’ve worked with the TLAs since then, but always through intermediaries. One critical element I have is to be well at arm’s length from the client. I never want the client to think they can clean up loose ends by cleaning me up, so work to ensure they never know who I am. Nominally, I don’t know who my clients are either, though due to the nature of my business (so much being personal), I’m often able to figure out who has the most to gain and thus who my client likely is.

While hiring someone like me isn’t cheap, you might be surprised how inexpensive it is. I generally charge the equivalent of $100K a month, though add in any expected expenses as well as a premium based on the target specifics. I charge $50K just to evaluate the job. Only once the money is deposited (I have a rat’s nest of accounts I move money around, and some of the banks I use I’ve had professional relationships with giving me extra confidence that the money will never be traced back to me) do I even evaluate how much I will charge for the job. I find this eliminates those who aren’t serious. I’m totally fine with only working a few months out of the year, so happily pass on jobs where the client won’t adhere to my principles. Once I start to consider the job I do a lot of investigation on the target. Just because someone isn’t a household name doesn’t mean that they’re an easy target; I want to be damn sure of what I’m going up against before I commit. Sometimes the client is very specific about how they want the job done, which can have an impact on the cost. Either they specifically want it to look like an accident (about half the cases; I’m proud to note that about a third of my kills never even lead to an autopsy (not that that would have mattered)) or they are intent on sending a message and want a gorey visible kill. Occasionally they don’t care and I usually go with sniping, since I generally prefer to minimize the chance of the unexpected. So after I’ve evaluated the target, which often takes a week or more, I provide the client with a price. I’ve only had a couple of clients turn me down at this stage; generally if they have gone this far they are in it for the duration. I wait for the rest of the money to be paid (I always work with all the money paid up front, that way there’s even less chance that I become a “loose end”) then give them a cancel code (used exactly once) and tell them an approximate timetable. I never give absolute timetable because I always want to leave room for flexibility, but I generally give a 3-5 day window so the client can do whatever the client feels is necessary in preparation.

The biggest challenge I see in this business is being patiently alert at all times. The vast bulk of my time is spent waiting attentively. I believe I’ve mastered the art of looking totally absorbed in something (sometimes music, generally a book or magazine) while using all my faculties to observe the environment. Many of my peers in the military found this boring and would often get restless or careless. I never found it so; I’d be spending most of that time working through detailed scenarios in my mind for fall back positions, alternatives, what-ifs, etc. I haven’t been surprised very often; generally I’ve already worked out a counter scenario for any event I come across.

Exploding Bullet Theory

I once had this contract where the client wanted to scare the hell out of the target community (I’m 99% sure it was a government, not that I care that much). There was this group of rather vicious “wanna-be” drug lords who were making a name for themselves. The client figured that if something spectacularly gory happened to the 5 leaders the rest would simply abandon the enterprise. After some research, I figured the ideal situation would be if the leaders mysteriously exploded in very short order. Because of their chosen location, I had a very nice sniper location that gave me excellent coverage of their compound. I figured if I engineered a bullet that would make the target explode, I could take out the 5 from the same vantage point in less than a minute. If one or more got wise, I could fall back to plan B and take out their vehicles as they tried to get away.

The first part was to design a new bullet. For most of my long-range sniping I use the trusty 50 caliber round. The shell always makes me think of a banana, perhaps because of the brass color. Anyway, the 50 cal bullet is already a very formidable and deadly round, but I wanted something more, so worked on something that could deliver 100% of its kinetic energy into the target. I decided on a fragmenting round with a small amount of explosive in it. The bullet would maintain its shape as it flew through the air, so I wouldn’t have to relearn how to shoot it, but as soon as it hit something it would trigger the explosive which would cause the bullet to fragment into a couple of thousand pieces flying off in different directions. I lost a rifle testing the bullets; I initially had the explosive trigger too sensitive, but that’s why we test and test in a safe environment, eh? After a month or so of work I got the bullet such that if I hit a gallon jug of water the spot where the jug sat was just a bit damp, the jug and the water in it had vanished. A board put behind the target, meanwhile, had nothing but a few small fragment impacts, so it was quite feasible that someone could be behind the target and still survive with minimal injury.

Since I had already invested some time in scouting, I knew the target’s overall habits to a certain degree. I spent a few more days observing from my sniper post and listening to the bugs I’d planted in their working areas. After I was pretty sure I’d have the correct conditions, I hauled my rifle and the suppressing mechanism up to my selected location and set up. I was intending to hit them right after lunch; they had a regular meeting at that time and could be counted on to all be outdoors and walking toward the same location. My suppressing mechanism is a rather bulky thing, but it absorbs almost 100% of the muzzle flash (not so critical in this case, but a major issue when operating at night!) and swallows essentially the entire explosion of the fired round. While the bullet itself is supersonic (actually a couple of times the speed of sound) and therefore makes a racket as it travels through the air, because people tend to react to the closest location the round comes near them, it generally means no one ever looks toward the gun. Of course, I’m camouflaged as well, but it’s always best if no one ever looks at you.

When the time came I was ready. I could see where each target was going to exit their building and figured on taking the one that was least visible from the others first. I was relying on the average person not having the reflexes to immediately duck and cover when something unexpected happens and further, I was expecting the leaders to be even more reluctant to react and look foolish to their underlings, so I felt I had a good chance of taking them all out. I am happy to report that the gig went off pretty much without a hitch, though either one of the underlings got lucky in his wild fire or happened to be looking in exactly the right location when I fired, as I did take a few rounds in my direction. The results were quite spectacular. It looked exactly as if a small bomb had gone off inside each target. The underlings surrounding the targets literally got an eye and ear full of the target and while many of the underlings started to react, ducking and taking cover, the leaders, just like I expected, were too cool to do so and made very easy targets. The last one finally did start to move, as I believe he saw two of his compatriots get hit, but he moved in the exact direction I was herding him and once he crouched down (he even drew his gun, but was pointing in entirely the wrong direction), I popped him (literally) as well. I waited for the chaos to wind down, then made my way back to my vehicle and left the area. I never bothered to research to see if the group fell apart as my client expected, but I’m pretty sure I had the expected psychological impact and for sure any remaining people were a lot more cautious.


Not that many people in my line of work have long-term stable relationships. It’s hard to protect loved ones when you come home to them every night; everyone makes mistakes and if you make a mistake coming home to one of dozens of locations that can be easily burned, it’s difficult for any pursuit to become problematic. However, if you have something at a single location, “home,” that’s near and dear to you, then you’re vulnerable. I always call my parents from other countries on burner phones (they expect me to be calling from an unfamiliar number; sadly it means they have plenty of experience hanging up on telemarketers) so it should be impossible to connect me to them. I don’t visit that often, and when I do I take elaborate measures to shake off any tails, change my look and ensure I’m not tagged with any bugs. Imagine if I had to go through that every night just to get home; how many times would I make a mistake over the course of a career? As a consequence, I haven’t formed any long-term relationships. I take my physical pleasure in an ad hoc manner. Generally, I prefer college girls. As a group, they seem quite open to one night stands and, at least in my experience, not clingy at all when I get up to leave. Even though I’m past college age (not that I ever actually attended), because of my average, everyman looks, I’m easy to mistake for being younger (or older) than I am with just changes in posture, cloths and the bare minimum of makeup. Usually, I slip into a college bar, observe for a while, then select an appropriately exotic accent for the area and start chatting with women who appear to be there for a pickup. Because of the nature of my job, I work very hard to stay in excellent shape, the kind of shape that also attracts the sort of attention I desire in these situations (on gigs I tend to wear baggy clothes and a strap around my gut so I look even more like an average white guy), so I generally don’t have to put in too much effort.

I’ve spent some time with peers, though those relationships don’t last either. One I remember in particular, I call her my “Ziva” (from NCIS). Easily as deadly as the one in the show and even more beautiful and sexy; her specialty is in getting guys to follow her around so she or her group can extract information from them. She and I cross paths from time to time and twice we had a chance to spend several days together between jobs. However, she’s a patriot and always feels obligated to get back to work (I’m self employed specifically so I can set my own “hours” and would cheerfully take an extra few weeks between jobs), so it doesn’t go on. Because our gigs tend to take quite a while (I often take weeks, sometimes months, on a gig) and we trot the globe, we don’t get a chance to hook up very often. And, due to the nature of our careers, we don’t make special efforts to arrange times (doing so creates a weakness that can be exploited; such is our life). I confess, though, that I often select women for liaisons because they physically remind me of my Ziva, though the thrill isn’t quite the same.

Spies vs Contract Killers

There is a big difference between spies and contract killers. As an outsider, you might reasonably think that we do the same thing, but spies are patriots and contract killers are decidedly not. While my reputation is extremely important to me, I’m not about to risk my life carrying out a contract, while spies risk their lives all the time. I think they’re crazy and many I know rarely seem to have a plan, just relying on their native skills, and as far as I can tell, luck. I like to have everything worked out ahead of time, though I feel I’m also good at improvising, but spies, at least most of the spies I’ve worked with, seem to feel that improvisation is the way to go.

Though I have known a couple of “James Bond” type spies that rush about always on the verge of disaster, yet always managing to salvage things at the last moment, generally they’re a little more cautious. I haven’t found any close to my level of detail, though. Perhaps that thought happens “back home” with the “higher ups” and the spies have a support system. Since the vast majority of the time I’m working totally alone, I can’t afford to be in situations where unexpected things happen. Do that often enough and the odds will certainly catch up. Without any sort of backup, you’re done.

Back when I was in the military and more properly could be called a spy (if you kill for “Queen and Country” and get a regular government paycheck, I guess you aren’t a contract killer) I often did have a backup I could call on if necessary, but I never felt the need to do so. Perhaps that’s why I sneer (only in my mind, of course, I would never express that openly; why make enemies for no reason?) on those who plan on needing the backup. I watch TV like the rest of the human species, though sometimes it’s difficult to keep up with my favorite shows as I run around the world (sometimes I just wait until the season comes out on DVD) and enjoy watching the spy shows and movies. Every now and again I get some inspiration, but a lot of the stuff is just silly. Of course, if someone tried to make a movie about how I actually do my job, I’m sure watching paint dry would be vastly more enjoyable. I like being detail oriented and enjoy what’s probably the tedious process of envisioning the multitude of what-ifs and building counter scenarios to adjust. I guess that’s what makes me good at my job.

This Might Surprise You

Slightly more than half of my contracts aren’t to kill anyone. As I mentioned before, I excel at hiding in plain sight and as such do make a good spy (notwithstanding the above; I am no patriot!). I’m often hired to plant bugs, to intimidate people (not the muscle bound “Guido” kneecapping intimidating, more psychological), to get information and a couple of times to kidnap people. I don’t care for kidnapping because I don’t like to get that physically intimate with a target (it leaves too many things to chance) but if the price is right I’m willing to take on the work. I’m generally hired for spy-type work when a government needs plausible deniability or a corporation wants something that requires a physical touch (they can hire Russian hackers if the work can be done remotely). I use only high-end products for bugs (I pass that cost onto my client) and specialize in bugging people who never know they’ve been bugged. Occasionally I’ll simply do an insert, meaning I take the client’s bugs and put them in, then that’s the end. The client may never retrieve them. When I put my own bugs in I almost always retrieve them; I don’t care to leave any signs of my activity. I have to know a great deal about locks, alarms, surveillance, etc., I probably could make a good living doing security consulting, but this is a lot more fun (and allows me to take several months of vacation each year).

Many Covers, Each with their own Fingerprints

As I mentioned before, I have several deep covers (I have dozens of passports and other IDs and plenty of different, legitimate, credit cards) that I work to maintain. Each cover has its own disguise and even has its own fingerprints! I would give each one its own DNA if I could figure out a reliable way to do so, but so far I have only had a small handful of DNA traces left, each in a different country and half with no obvious crime associated with it. I also have a number of covers that I use exclusively when on the job. These covers are also deep, but they’re specifically designed to be burned in the event I get caught up in any investigation. When I’m on a gig and ready to do the dirty deed I put on one of my “burner” covers, complete with the burner fingerprints. That’s paid off a couple of times, most noteworthy in my Murphy’s Law story outlined below.

My deep covers include jobs that have actual paychecks with actual companies (invariably the work is independent and requires a great deal of travel, a bit dangerous to have such a pattern, but any other sort of deep cover would be too difficult to maintain). This means, of course, that I have to show up for “work” from time to time. Even when I have a relationship with the owner, I still need to show up so the other employees have a memory of me that any investigator will be able to verify. One of the reasons why I only take a handful of gigs each year is that it takes time and effort to maintain my covers, generally a month or so a year. Foreign sales is generally the sort of “work” I take and it is generally quite trivial to actually engage in legitimate sales as I travel. I do, however, have a couple of “jobs” where I pay the company rather than the other way around. I still make myself visible to the other employees of the company, but the owner knows full-well that I’m not actually contributing anything. Each cover has different pluses and minuses associated with it and I’m always careful when I use them so they’re consistent.

Each of my deep covers (including my burners) have a specific disguise and set of fingerprints. It’s so nice to have my excellent memory to keep track of all of them, otherwise I’d have to have records somewhere making myself quite vulnerable. I make sure that my disguises are distinct enough so that if I’m in one I’m not mistaken for another. When I’m on a gig, I never use my own fingerprints, I always use a set of burners. Even when wearing gloves! I guess some might think all this effort is tedious, and sometimes it does feel so, but for the most part I enjoy the process. I trust it makes me so difficult to trace that even if someone catches on to my work my regular habits of switching identities will throw them off my tail even if I’m not aware of their interest.

Murphy’s law: “That That Can, Does”

The above level of caution once paid off in spectacular fashion. I was on a gig relatively early in my career when it seemed that everything that possibly could go wrong did. I was identified during my initial surveillance, spotted again when I hit the target, was pursued afterwards and was actually in police custody and interrogated for two days. It was a fairly simply gig: take out the target making it look like an accident. The target didn’t have any particularly special protection and wasn’t any more paranoid than anyone else in her position (I’m an equal opportunity killer, gender doesn’t matter ;-). I’m pretty sure I didn’t treat this job any different than any other, rather I think it was just bad luck. One reason I spent two days with the police was in an effort to try and understand what they knew and only after I felt sure that my capture was an accident did I move on (I keep a raft of lawyers on retainer for just such events, though in this case I was able to make do with the public defender assigned to me).

The job was to take out this female “captain of industry,” I guess one of her rivals (almost certainly male) felt vulnerable or whatever. I did my usual investigation prior to setting a price. As I was slipping out after planting my bugs, I was seen by several people in the building. I have no idea why they were there that late and while I had deliberately disguised myself as a janitor and had all the appropriate IDs, I’m always uncomfortable when I’m seen unexpectedly. One of the group came to ask me what I was doing in the boss’s office. I had had the forethought to have a bag of trash to display (I whipped some broken English on them; I made myself up to look Hispanic after all). The guy backtracked to the office as I was walking away, I guess to see if I had stolen something, but it was a sign of things to come.

After I took the job, I decided to have the accident look like food poisoning. The target was a “foodie” and was always trying something new. She was also a fan of sushi and was well known to prepare her own from time to time. I felt that she would be perfect to “accidently” try some Fugu, that deadly (if not prepared properly) puffer fish so popular in Japan (why people like to tempt fate, I don’t get; outside the military I have never jumped out of a perfectly good airplane). I knew she liked to experiment cooking on her own and felt quite sure that no one would question her being silly enough to try something like this on her own (like so many in her position, she had enormous ego). I get the fish, prepare it “wrong,” and slip into her place while she’s at work on a day I know (via my bugs) she’s planning on doing some kitchen experimenting. I mix the “wrong” fish in with some fish that looks the same (and contaminate some of the other fish for good measure) and get ready to leave. I’ve developed some in-depth skills with lock picking over the years and as a consequence generally don’t bother with keys, just use the picks (even on my own).

I was locking the deadbolt on my way out, after having reactivated the alarm, and had my back to the hallway. Someone came out of another apartment, saw me and thought I was breaking in and gave chase. Very noble of them, also incredibly stupid; what if I really was a desperate person and took them on. Anyway, I had no problem outdistancing them on foot, but they were clever enough to call 911. By the time I got to the lobby the cops were already rolling in. When I was doing my research the cops always took at least another 30 seconds to show up, more than enough time for me to get to a place I could take my disguise off (if I took it off while in the stairwell it would be obvious I was in disguise which would blow my cover of a common burglar). Since I had done extensive walk arounds, I knew intimately the surrounding roads, alleys, parks, etc., so took off toward the back, hoping the cops had responded to the front only. That supposition was only partly true. As I exited the rear of the building a car was pulling in the alley. I felt confident I could beat these guys on foot, so took off the other way toward a park. It’s harder to hide in a park in the middle of the day, but I felt that there would be enough people to blend in with. Surprisingly, one of the cops turned out to be an Olympic sprinter (well, it sure seemed that way as he gained on me!) and was hot on my heels as I headed into the park. I didn’t want to get physical with the cops, nothing sets a town on edge like a cop getting roughed up or killed, so I started to think that the better course of action was to get caught.

I allowed the cop to catch up with me and he did what I hoped he would and Tasered me. Of course, that meant I got bashed in the face when I went down and had the “joyful” experience of those amazingly painful cramps, but I was careful to hide my grin. By that time I had tossed my professional lock picks and only had the crude ones you might expect to find on a common burglar.

While I didn’t pass out, I did make like I was totally incapacitated. They stuck me in the back of a car and drove me back to the building and had the witness ID me. Then they took me to the station and booked me. After dumping me in a holding cell, I got a chance to relax for a while. It was a couple of hours later when they took me for interrogation and now I was curious to know if my cover would hold up. My skin was darkened along with my hair, of course I spoke with a thick Hispanic accent (and was fluent in Spanish when they brought in an interpreter) and the fingerprints I had matched up exactly with someone in their system that looked exactly like me. At first I denied that I was in the building and tried to make out like I was unreasonably attacked in the park. Then “reluctantly” agreed that I had actually been in the building, but wasn’t trying to break in, just innocently walking down the hallway. But when pressed, I eventually “gave in” and admitted I was trying to break in. As I had observed the place quite a bit, I knew that the rear entrance wasn’t properly guarded. And since they had lots of expensive residents in the building, they actually had minimal cameras once you got out of the lobby. Thus I fed them a line about how I had seen the back entrance open, so decided to try my hand to see if could steal something.

They read me my rights after they Tasered me and stuck me in the car, and I knew that as soon as any competent lawyer heard that I’d be out on the street with all charges dropped. I just wanted to be sure that they were sure I was just an incompetent burglar before I left. I spent the night in jail with some drunks and petty thieves. I kept largely to myself; I’ve mastered the ability to look intimidating when I need to; I only had to do so once to be left to my own devices. The had some news channel on the TV outside our cell and I was able to verify that my target was taken out when it came on the news. One small concern I had was that she would have a group of people over (my bugs indicated not, but people change their minds all the time) and there would be collateral damage, but this wasn’t the case, it was totally clean. I wanted to give some time to see if the cops ever associated her death with my presence, so stayed another day. The morning of the second day I “thought” to ask for a lawyer and in a few hours was telling my story to a public defender and sure enough, once she heard that my rights were read to me when I was “incapacitated” from the Taser, I was out in a couple of hours, all charges dropped.

It’s because of things like this that I engage in these elaborate layers of covers. I was able to get off, despite being essentially caught in the act, because of prior preparation. No one else got hurt or killed, the job went off without a hitch and no one knows I was involved. Despite seemingly everything going wrong, it was still a near perfect job. Yes, I took extra precautions after that, but I went over all the steps in my mind and felt sure I wasn’t being lazy or taking shortcuts. Just had a bit of bad luck.

Thank you for taking the time to read my story. I hope to share more with you in the future. My writer friend will probably take a bit more control over the content and it will read less like an instruction manual.

Author: mitusents

Biochemist, MBA, then programmer. Now novelist, screenplay writer and hopefully director. What a strange trip it's been.