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Contractors

Contractors

By K. BensleyPublished 3 years ago Updated 3 years ago 8 min read
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He sank his teeth into the fruit with no resistance as juicy tendrils ran down his chin. The overwhelming feeling of pleasure was cut short though when a bullet hit the back of his head.

Billy woke face down on the bed soaking. A still atmosphere filled the dark room, permeated with odours of stale alcohol and sweat. Even when he drank the unwanted dreams still came. Didn’t drink enough then, his cycle of justification to do it all again. Other than not drinking, there didn’t seem to be an alternative solution.

Thinking of the last few years only seemed to worsen his mood, once a valued operator in one of the most elite Special Forces units in the world, to now being an unemployed illegal contractor.

His phone rang from within the folds of his duvet, the annoying ringtone he promised to change every time he heard it.

“Were the..?”

He rummaged around under him until he recoiled at the blinding brightness in his hand. It was Jimmy.

“Yo, yo,” instinctually transforming into a perkier version of himself.

“What yeh doing tomorrow kid?” His thick Yorkshire accent launched straight into the question, throwing Billy off.

“ah uh..” He was actually planning on drinking whisky and watching war movies again but wasn’t going to admit it. “Nothing mate, still looking for work to be honest.”

“Reet I’ve got us some, easy gig and could be a long term thing depending how this goes.” Jimmy sounded certain.

“What is it? Any more info? Is it like the last one?” Billy had a hundred questions because he wanted to say no and carry on distracting himself from living in his head with booze. He was aware of its destruction though.

Jimmy sounded vague, “it’s an escort and surveillance of assets. A two man job a couple of times a month. They want to meet us both tomorrow. You in?”

Billy was relieved it didn’t involve a ‘target’, he trusted his friend and knew he withheld information for his benefit but he had no other way to make decent money after blowing the last payment. In the last 2 years he’d isolated himself from his network of friends and the veterans of The Special Reconnaissance Regiment, also known as 14 Intelligence Company or ‘the Det’. Not only was the shame of judgment becoming increasingly unbearable but these contracts hit different, he could now relate to the people he was killing, without the barriers of a foreign country where they looked or spoke different.

“I’m in.”

3 months earlier

The instructions were always the same, remain unseen. No other information was ever given other than a target pack containing the target’s physical details and location but not who it was or for what reason. Corporate ‘hits’ were quite common but rarely publicized, which made the lives of a ‘contractor’ easier after the fact.

This was the third job Billy, Jimmy and Brick took from the same employer. Jimmy’s contacts were endless and these were apparently sub-contracted to a renowned tech company. They didn’t need to know any more. Billy’s mind was on moving to South America to live a simple farming life, this was a means to that end.

Brick waited in a Mercedes Sprinter at extraction point 2, one mile to the north of the target’s estate. Billy had walked in darkness cross-country from Jimmy’s location nearly two miles away at Extraction point 1. They spoke using an encrypted frequency on VHF radios. Billy was in position within the garden, dressed in his favourite jungle gear and cam cream. He’d nestled himself between the garden furniture and folded deck chairs. It was the only area that wouldn’t be in the path of the security lighting.

Regardless if the mission was complete, their orders were to extract before daylight, at 05:20. Billy had been in place for two hours and the thought of a drink had already entered his mind as his stomach ached.

As they knew the target’s routine, tonight was their best chance or they’d have to wait another week until he was alone again.

Billy

“Alpha one, this is Bravo one, send update over?” Jimmy insisted on using correct voice procedure even though they used a secure channel.

“Alpha one, no change over” I said almost as a whisper, I would let them know if required but also aware he was not only keeping me awake but also checking I hadn’t been compromised.

“I’m getting my head down for an hour, gimme a heads up if anything changes, out!” said Brick, not caring about the formalities either.

Less than an hour later, as I was tensing the muscles in my legs to keep them from seizing, the back door slid open.

I pressed on the pressel five times to transmit the update, on hearing the sequence, they would be on immediate standby.

The target closed the door behind him and walked to the far end of his walled garden, now illuminated by the security lights. What made this job even easier was that there were no immediate neighbours.

Another three presses indicated to the team I’d positively identified the target and was closing in. The slight wind helped muffle the sound as I slid out from where I was. I moved on the balls of my feet towards him, using the shadowed hedges as cover.

I could see the target clearly now, stood side-on in between two large fruit trees, they looked like pairs but smaller, it’s early summer I suppose.

I had the SIG P229 in both hands now. The last few steps were slower, even more careful and ready to react to change. Five meters from the target I raised the pistol and noticed the familiar trembling. As usual I ignored it and lined up the foresight to the centre of his head and fired two rounds.

Even with a suppressor it sounded too loud.

I checked his carotid pulse and picked up the ejected brass casings.

“All call signs this is Alpha one, mission complete, on route to Echo 1 out!”

Present

The grey wet morning symbolized the mood that lay within the large decaying brick building on a South London industrial estate.

A stocky man in his late forties stood casually over the two bound prisoners. Taking a long drag of the cigarette, he thought about how he would proceed, he didn’t want to show frustration with their sudden lack of cooperation. They were dead either way but his employer needed reassurance of what they knew.

“I’ll ask one more time fella’s before I start breaking legs, what exactly did Brick know about the employer and the target?” He said in a mock Irish accent to add a level of anonymity.

Billy and Jimmy sat in chairs adjacent to each other, gorilla tape tied around their hands, feet and their heads above the nose. Even though they lolled and slumped, they were deceptively alert in mind. So far, their military interrogation tests seemed worse, although this had been longer with no food. They were left in total isolation for four days in separate rooms. Luckily the makeshift blindfolds made for easier sleep. Traditional training didn’t allow for sleep, which was a whole different experience. Amateurs, Jimmy thought, analysing every detail like he was back at the escape and evasion school. So far they’d failed miserably in their psychological breakdown and the only physical harm they’d received was a few kicks. Although, he was still worried what the next stage would bring.

Jimmy knew the most information about their employer but even then it was done by target packs left in dead letter boxes. The details of which were relayed by an anonymous contact who sent a ten figure grid reference for a specific map via a secure messaging service. He was originally given the job by a contact he met in Africa. He had no loyalty to this guy so his name was given fairly early to create some credibility. The plan was to give bits of truth gradually until he found out their motive. His intuition was that he and Billy were now loose ends. Quite possibly the worst predicament, he thought.

Although Billy was coping fairly well considering, his mind constantly raced around the situation he was now in. The pains in his stomach from the blows were nothing compared to his withdrawal from drink. Frustrated at being lured in by the job offer that was too good to be true and angry at his own poor judgment, he couldn’t be angry at Jimmy though. “I’ll get us through this” he mumbled to himself. Like Jimmy, Billy also knew these weren’t trained professionals, unless it was an intentional ploy. Either way, it didn’t matter, their captors were armed and unpredictable.

Billy

So cold, so so cold. I’d been left another two days in the hanger, or was it three? I was in constant pain but Jimmy was almost certainly dead. As I lay on my back in a stinking mess I think of the reasoning behind all this, in truth it’s all I’ve thought of, that and escape. The tape had been roughly removed from my head which had left weeping sores around my eyes. It took a few hours to adjust the light but when I did, the reality set in that escape was impossible.

It had all started with Brick, he had been identified somehow, taken and tortured for information, presumably to find out who’d ordered the hit on the last job. Luckily for them he knew very little, unlucky for us, he would surely have given the only information he knew. Me and Jimmy. So why am I still alive?

In the midst of a shallow sleep, I went rigid as the hanger doors creaked open. The next thing I felt before it went black was a hard kick straight to my face.

I came-to in the back of a van, groaning and with pain in more places than I could count. I could see Jimmy.

“Jim?”

“Jimmy?”

He didn’t answer but I seen his fist clench with an outstretched thumb. He was in a bad way, two broken legs and god knows what else but he was conscious at least.

The van stopped after reversing into somewhere. The back doors opened, men in masks picked up Jimmy and threw him on to the grass. They followed by doing the same with me, after landing with a grunt I heard the men get in the van and drive away.

Doubtful we’d been freed, I relaxed where I lay and enjoyed the warm breeze for a second.

I heard a disgusting noise next to me as I looked at jimmy devouring a pear, that’s when I noticed we were surrounded by them on the floor. I looked up and realized then where we were. Hearing footsteps behind me I tensed.

The gunshot to the back of Jimmy’s head was as surprising as the noise was in itself. My head span and my ears rang.

Half turning in the confusion, a woman was stood holding a pistol. She seen my movement and aimed to me.

“This isn’t justice, they said they’d deliver the killers but.” she said as moisture filled her eyes. She gave away more in those few words. Although I was still trying to process my closest friend being executed a metre away.

If there was ever a way out, this was my only window. I have nothing to lose.

“I pulled the trigger” I said, her eyes narrowed at the words.

“We are contractors, if it wasn’t me it would have been another one. Let me live and I’ll find you who ordered the hit in the first place.”

She raised the gun slightly and thought for an age. After a pause she visibly relaxed and dropped her arms.

“You need to help me with this body first.”

Young Adult
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About the Creator

K. Bensley

Writing is a hobby that I’m looking to explore and improve upon by creating a variety of fictional content.

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