Alaskan Silver The Clearing

St Louis stood in the clearing. He fired, and watched with a sour stomach, as his target fell. The Pick Axe man with him smiled.

“They’ll be pleased, you’ve earned your money. I didn’t think anyone could get close from that far away, not even me. Now that the Mayor’s little protector is dead, we can put things in motion.”

A scream was heard a few seconds later. Hinkle left to report to Sanders, and then to Strand. St Louis left too, careful to go in a different direction than Hinkle. He didn’t want to be connected to the shooting.

When first assigned to this undercover op, it had been just an assignment. Now, to maintain his cover, they expected him to kill Harriet, who was a lifelong friend. He hadn’t admitted it to himself until now, but he had loved her for years.

St Louis had never killed undercover, and he wasn’t about to start. That was the good thing about his carefully built reputation. He was famous for the long kill.

Very few people could fire from that far away, and that was key. It allowed him to stage a “killing”. You’ve figured it by now, but the target was a decoy, and the scream was Harriet’s. She would hide, pretending to die.

St Louis contact, who had arrived only days before, would hide her. The house was empty, everyone was away. So he would arrange for the death to be reported, and the “body” taken to a hasty burial. If this was a test, St Louis had passed it.

The real problem was not with the expensive gun, but the cheap hired one. Hinkle wouldn’t get the chance to report to anyone. Berger rode up to him. “What are you doing here?”

“Strand sent me. He said to tell you three things. First, he didn’t forget getting shot. Second, he doesn’t appreciate black mail.” “Wha else?” “Good bye.” After replacing the rifle, he pulled out the shovel. Berger would keep Hinkle’s hat to take to Strand, as ordered. The rest would end in a hasty burial in another clearing.

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