Episode Five: The Armed Briefcase Affair
Guy sat down across from his client. He was an older man, but aged in a fashion opposite to Abraham. He wore a small goatee, for one, and Guy suspected that beneath the man’s tall slender stature lurked a heap of muscle. Guy would consider screwing him, if he didn’t have to worry about his throat getting slit during the process.
Guy’s client, Mr. Cain, led a nameless syndicate. Cain didn’t employ Guy, but the man often hired Guy, and he bought Guy’s loyalty early in their relationship. But Guy knew when push came to shove, he’d still talk. He just hoped if the time came to talk, he could get moved away from Cain’s reach. And Cain had a long reach.
“I see you did your job exceptionally well this time,” Mr. Cain remarked, balancing his chin between two fingers. “I hear there were A.B.E.L. agents on the scene.”
“Really?” Guy asked, his thoughts narrowing quickly in on Nikolai.
“Did you seeing anyone hanging around on board? Anyone suspicious?”
“No,” Guy said. “But I mean, I don’t look out for that stuff unless it’s going to affect me.”
“An A.B.E.L. agent would affect you.”
“Well then I didn’t see one,” Guy said, but he definitely thought of Nikolai’s bum in that tight underwear of his.
“Did you sleep with anyone?”
“Do you even have to ask?”
“I mean, consistently,” Cain said, running a hand along his fading blonde hair. “Did you have any repeat customers? Perhaps A.B.E.L. thought to take advantage of your weak point.”
“It’s only a weak point if I let it be a weak point,” Guy replied, shortly. “They haven’t pulled me in yet so-“
“They’ve staked out my storage facility,” Cain said. “I don’t know if they’re waiting for you or if they’re just checking things out.”
Guy frowned. “Should I not stop there today? I have all this crap to drop off, and I need some stuff for another job I’m doing.”
Cain shrugged. “I suppose they can’t do anything if they know it’s me,” he replied. “If anything they should be lining up thanking me. The number of times I’ve done their god damn job.”
Guy nodded. He didn’t like the politics involved, he didn’t like remembering who hated who or who sucked up to who. He just liked doing his job and spending his money. “Thanks again for the storage unit,” Guy said to fill the silence.
“Oh, you’re welcome,” Cain replied, smiling. “I suppose you find it comfortable?”
“I do,” Guy said. “It holds all my things perfectly, and I don’t have to worry about the police or A.B.E.L. searching and destroying my explosives. I really appreciate it.”
“Well, it’s the least I could do after I uprooted you and moved you here,” Cain replied. “But I’m glad to hear it,” Cain paused, smiling at Guy. “Did you enjoy the cruise? I thought you might.”
“I did,” Guy replied. “Thanks for covering the costs. I considered blowing up Abraham when he went Scuba Diving on another boat, but I figured you didn’t want the collateral damage.”
“Considerate of you.”
“It would have been awesome to see though.”
“One day I’ll blow up a boat,” Guy said. “It’ll be awesome.”
“Of course,” Cain replied. “I might have another assignment for you, are you up for it?”
“Do you mean right now?” Guy asked. “I have another assignment that’ll take a few days, but I can come back when I’m done.”
Cain hesitated. “A few days?”
“Probably three to four,” Guy responded. “Can it wait that long? I’m not going to be hurt if you get someone else.”
“It can wait,” Cain stated. “It’s important you do this one.”
“All right,” Guy said, “then it’s all me, I’m there. Do I get to blow up a boat?”
“A floor of a building.”
“Yes!” Guy said. “All right, awesome.” Guy stood up and slapped Cain’s desk. “That’s going to be great.”
Guy hesitated, causing Cain to ask, “Is there anything else you need from me?”
“How good are you with languages?” Guy asked.
“I speak four and I can pinpoint most,” Cain replied. “I have a hard time when it comes to dialect, but I can tell an Aussie from a Kiwi.”
Sitting back down, Guy slid his laptop out of his suitcase and booted it up. Cain raised his brow but asked nothing as the room filled with a small snippet of Nikolai’s sleep-talking. When he stopped the sound, Cain asked, “And what am I listening to?”
“That’s what I’m trying to figure out,” Guy said.
“The language? It’s Russian,” Cain replied. “But why do you have a recording of a man speaking Russian? It sounds like he’s in a trance.”
“Do you speak Russian?”
“No,” Cain replied. “Why do you have that recording?”
“Just something I picked up on the trip,” Guy explained. “He spoke it during sex.”
“And you didn’t think to ask him?”
“He didn’t seem like the type to tell.”
“Can I have it?” Cain asked. “If it’s an A.B.E.L. agent, he could be giving out information unintentionally. And while I don’t want your ego to think that your lovemaking is powerful enough to cause that result, it’s not exactly impossible either.”
“It’s more likely he’s talking about what a great screw I am,” Guy said, closing his laptop, “and I’d rather hold onto it.”
“It’s not like you to get sentimental.”
“He was a really good fuck.”
“Did you have him more than once?”
“Nope,” Guy replied.
“If you find out what he’s saying, and it’s something about A.B.E.L., I’ll pay you for the information,” Cain said. “Hell, I’ll pay for it right now.”
“Sorry,” Guy said. “I’m planning to jerk off to the memory.”
“Of course,” Cain said, rolling his eyes. “Then I will see you in a few days.”
“Thanks for the work,” Guy said, winking.
Guy walked out of the room with a distant wave. He left Cain’s building and headed towards his storage unit. He noticed a moving van parked outside of the lot and offered it a wave as he walked into the lot. Guy punched the code to access the main storage unit and stepped into it.
Cain stuffed the main storage unit full of boxes and junk to make it look crowded. Guy knew the box to open and crawl through to reach the underground passages that led to the other units like Guy’s. Guy liked the idea behind it – that Guy’s real storage unit would be hard to pinpoint from any observers. He appreciated the privacy.
He walked through the corridors, hearing no footsteps but his own. He hummed a song that he couldn’t remember the lyrics to as he stepped up the stairs and pressed the password to get into his own unit. He breathed in as he walked into his unit, the air smelling of grease and lavender. Guy smiled.
Guy, knowing A.B.E.L. would pick him up once he left the lot, went through his belongings to get rid of anything incriminating. He put away his Luger, his explosives, and he decided to put his clothes in a hamper to dry clean them later. He didn’t really want A.B.E.L. going through his dirty laundry.
He changed his shoes into ones that didn’t have plastic explosives available in the heel, and he admired himself in his full length mirror as he put on new clothes. He adjusted his brown leather jacket. “Indiana Jones, eat your heart out,” Guy said, winking at himself.
He moved back to his belongings to pull the laptop out of his bag. Cain was right, Guy wasn’t that sentimental. But Guy supposed he was still more sentimental than an assassin should be. He pulled out a small briefcase from the shelf. He pulled out a small button in the back before inserting the combination and opening the briefcase.
If Guy didn’t pull out the small button in the back, the briefcase would explode. Luckily, he was the only one who knew it was there to pull.
He lifted a picture out of the briefcase as he booted up the laptop. A small girl stared up at him from the picture. Pigtails propped up the girl’s thick black hair and her large smile lacked a tooth. Guy smiled back at her before tossing the picture back into the briefcase. He took a jump drive out of the briefcase and moved Mr. Wetsuit’s sleep noises off of the laptop and onto the jump drive.
While he waited for the transfer, he picked up a pair of green and purple argyle boy shorts and held it between his fingers. He ran the underwear down his nose, though now the smell was his own familiar scent, and then ran it along his lips.
Ten years earlier Guy went on a job for Cain. Cain wanted a messy murder, the entire hotel room blown out just to kill one man. Guy staked out a hotel room across from the man’s to check his routines. However, when he broke into the man’s room to lay out explosives, he found someone else there.
He didn’t know if she had another name, but he knew her as Red. Anyone else knew her by that as well. At the time she was still a budding assassin, more expensive than him, higher quality than him, but still a little wet behind the ears and prone to mistakes. Her first mistake was not realizing that someone else had been hired to kill the man.
Guy hadn’t noticed either, but it wasn’t Guy’s job to give a shit.
Her long curtain of auburn hair framed her fair Slavic face. Her features all looked long and thin, her youth keeping her face perfectly smooth, even around the corners of her eyes. “Guy Solo?” Red asked, staring at Guy. “Did they seriously hire Guy Solo to make sure I did my job?”
“I doubt it,” Guy replied. “My client is too cheap to hire two assassins to kill the same man, and I highly doubt he’d hire a smooth killer like you when he wants it messy.”
“So you’ve heard of me,” she said, her long fingers finding a place on her hips.
“I keep up with the rising stars,” Guy said, winking. “For fifty-percent of your profits, I’ll fuck off and let you do your job. If not, I’m blowing this whole room up, and I don’t know if your client will appreciate that.”
Red raised a thin eyebrow. “Okay, you’ve got me. If you blow this asshole up, it’ll look like my client killed him, and he doesn’t want to get called into any sort of agency for questioning. And I know you’re happy to crawl back to your client and say you fucked up. But fifty’s too much. Twenty-five.”
“I’m not sure you’re in any position to bargain,” Guy replied, shaking the lump of unarmed explosive in his hand.
The two stared each other down for a minute, Guy’s smile contrasted against Red’s straight expression. “Okay, I’ll bargain,” Guy said, shrugged. “Twenty-five percent and you screw me. I’m not one to pay for it, but I like breaking in the new assassins.”
He watched her brown eyes crawl across his body. She didn’t look impressed, but she didn’t look disgusted either. He less heftier then, his muscles more defined on his stomach.
Guy continued, “If anything, you should be paying me, you know. It’s hard for an assassin to find someone to sleep with without having to worry about a knife in the back.”
“Your reputation insinuates that you have no trouble finding people to sleep with,” Red replied.
“Yes, but I’ve also had to deal with getting knives in the back,” Guy replied. “Literally, I have a scar. I’d be more than willing to show you the scar though.” He waggled his eyebrows in his most charming way.
Red checked her watch. Guy walked over to the window and spread the plastic around the edges of it. He played with the detonator between his fingers. Their hit would be home in less than twenty minutes. Both of them had a lot of work to do.
“All right,” she said. “Twenty-five, plus sex.”
“Of course,” Red replied. “Now fuck off so I can get this done.”
“Should I leave you to find where I’m staying?” Guy asked.
“Oh I’ll find you,” Red said, smirking. “You can be certain of that.”
“And if you bail on me, this room will blow up, regardless of whether or not you’ve made your hit,” Guy replied, peeling the explosive back off the window. “I’ll see you later then?”
“Yes,” Red said. “I must admit I’m definitely curious about your performance.”
Guy forced himself out of the memory as he set her underwear back into the briefcase. He didn’t want to get himself all worked up and excited only to have A.B.E.L. pick him up. Though he supposed it’d be fine to be worked up if he would find Mr. Wetsuit there.
He dropped the jump drive into the briefcase along with the photographs and underwear. And he thought about Mr. Wetsuit beside Red. His two great conquests relaxed in the same case among other things. Guy made note that if Mr. Wetsuit showed up for their next appointment, he’d have to take an underwear trophy. He loved those boxer briefs. He shut the case and put it back away on the shelf. He tossed his bag on the shelf as well.
Guy checked his pockets to make sure he had nothing that he would mind losing to A.B.E.L.’s hands. Then he exited his own storage unit, leaving the lot through the main unit. That’s when two A.B.E.L. men quite literally picked him up, raising him off his feet and blindfolding him. “How did you guys know I’m into this?” Guy asked.
They stayed silent as Guy felt himself tossed into the back of the van. No one knew where A.B.E.L. headquarters was located. Despite knowing several of the field agents, Guy only didn’t know the one in command, Cox. He only recognized Cox by voice, and even then, he wasn’t certain he would recognize the voice if he heard the man speaking to him in another situation. Every branch owner of A.B.E.L. was a faceless entity, someone you could pass on the street without knowing at all.
An agent Cain planted in A.B.E.L. claimed Cox was an old, short, heavyset man with a thick white beard and thick white hair complete with a pair of bushy black eyebrows. However, Cain’s man went missing shortly after that information, and neither Guy nor Cain knew whether or not to believe the information. So they suspected everyone instead of only suspecting old men with bushy white hair.
Guy’s tramp through A.B.E.L. headquarters was routine. He was blindfolded for most of it, forced to talk to the emotionless Rennison, flirted a bit with Westermark, and then let back out to go about his regular routine. He always kept his ears and eyes open for any new information he could sell to Cain, but he found nothing new.
Once A.B.E.L. let Guy out and stopped following him, he went back to his storage unit, dropped off his clothes at a drycleaners, packed a new suitcase (complete with his tools of the trade) and set off for the hotel near his next job, the hotel Nikolai found listed on the slip of paper.
Guy hadn’t forgotten he was supposed to meet Mr. Wetsuit, and he waited for him in the hotel lobby several days later, checking his watch habitually. He cursed himself for not bringing a book to read. Once his watch crawled along for half an hour, Guy saw him step into the hotel lobby. He almost missed him, really. Nikolai wore his tourist get-up, khaki pants, blue polo shirt, and his fanny pack. This time he wore aviators and a New York Yankees hat. While Guy liked Nikolai’s tourist get-up, he didn’t appreciate the fact that he worried Nikolai wouldn’t show.
Guy stood up and Nikolai’s steel blue eyes locked onto him instantly. Nikolai began walking over, but Guy pressed the button to the elevator. So Nikolai stood beside him. “It’s not fashionable to be late anymore,” Guy said.
“The cab driver tried to take advantage of me because I looked like a tourist,” Nikolai replied. “We had an argument on the street.”
The elevator door opened, and Guy offered the women that stepped out a smile. Nikolai and Guy stepped into the elevator. Nikolai and Guy both noticed a man rushing towards the elevator, and Guy furiously pressed the door close button. The door closed before the man got close enough to see Guy’s determination to block him out.
Nikolai slammed Guy against the wall of the elevator, his arms tight around Guy, one hand firmly grabbed his ass. Guy watched Nikolai press his lips against his own in all of the elevator’s mirrors, and Guy started kissing Nikolai back, dipping his tongue in and out of Nikolai’s mouth, his fingers burrowing into Nikolai’s blonde hair. Guy felt his pants tighten fiercely as Nikolai continued to grope him.
But the door opened to Guy’s floor, and Guy grabbed Nikolai’s wrist to lead him to his hotel room. Guy found Nikolai less affectionate in the hallway, and Guy’s mind darted to topics of conversation, but found nothing worth mentioning. Guy struggled with his electronic door key, and Nikolai frustrated him by taking the key from him to open the door himself.
Nikolai stepped in first with Guy behind him, Guy’s eyes habitually dropping to watch Nikolai’s rear as he moved into the room. “So I figured it out,” Guy said, as he closed the door.
“Dare I ask what it is you figured out?”
“You’re Russian,” Guy exclaimed, pointing at Nikolai.
“Yes,” Nikolai said.
Guy held his dramatic point.
Nikolai continued, “So…?”
“So you’re Russian!” Guy said. “I figured it out!”
“I did not realize that was one of the mysteries of me,” Nikolai said. He took off his aviators and threw them on the floor. Guy saw his nose print on the glasses. Guy felt his body tense as Nikolai stepped closer to him, “I suggest you focus on the things about me you do know.”
Nikolai dropped down onto the hotel bed. He slowly spread his thighs and rubbed the inside of them. Guy only offered a sheepish smile and said, “You’re going to have to wait.”
“I can’t afford to be exhausted on this job, so we’ll fool around when I get back, okay?”
Nikolai stood up from the bed, straightening his pants. He said, “Am I to understand that you invited me out here only to wait for you?”
Guy grabbed the front of Nikolai’s shirt, pulling him down to his own eyelevel. He murmured against Nikolai’s lips, “If you had gotten here on time, we might have had time.”
Nikolai pushed him away. Guy felt a hint of frustration crawl through him as Nikolai paced around the room. “Mr. Wetsuit,” he said. “I’ll be a couple of hours and then I’ll be back to do whatever it is you want to do.”
“I assure you I did not come here to wait.”
“Do you have other plans this evening?” Guy asked.
Nikolai stared blankly at him. Guy smiled.
“Listen, you can leave if you don’t want to wait,” Guy continued. “It’s no skin off my nose.”
Nikolai exhaled. He walked back up to Guy and wrapped his arms around him. “I suggest giving me something to think about while you are gone.”
Guy scoffed, but he felt Nikolai’s fingers twine through his belt loops, lifting him onto the tips of his toes. He felt Nikolai nuzzle him, lightly brushing his lips against Guy’s. Guy felt his cheeks burn, his heart pressing against his ears.
“Do you have anything for me?” Nikolai asked against Guy’s lips.
Guy felt his legs weaken. He draped his arms around Nikolai’s neck and tilted his head down for a kiss. He twisted his fingers through Nikolai’s hair as he felt Nikolai’s leg press against his groin. When Guy tried to pull away, Nikolai pulled him in tighter, gently nuzzling him and staring at him through his eyelashes. “Is that enough?” Guy asked, his tone tense. He didn’t want to loiter around cuddling.
“For now,” Nikolai murmured, releasing Guy.
Guy slipped away from Nikolai and opened his suitcase. He grabbed a briefcase inside of it and then stood by the door. “I’ll be back,” Guy said. “But just in case we have to run, don’t undress or anything to surprise me.”
Nikolai offered Guy a cool stare as he said, “Sure.”
Guy grinned and said, “Until later, Mr. Wetsuit.”
The smile faded as soon as Guy shut the door behind him. He felt his lips as he walked to the elevator. Red was a one-time deal, he offered to meet her more, but he didn’t see her again. And this Mr. Wetsuit – Guy pressed his thumb against the elevator button – maybe it would be better if he hadn’t seen Mr. Wetsuit again either. He waited for the heat to leave his cheeks as the elevator crawled up to him. Maybe it would be better if Mr. Wetsuit was just a memory in a briefcase too.