Friday, March 5, 2010

A Twist Of Noir 372 - Jim Wisneski


Previously published at Paul D. Brazill's blog on December 10, 2009

Most hits were pretty easy. It wasn’t like the movies or books where things get overly complicated. The only hard part was to get the person isolated so once they were shot you could leave the scene in normal fashion.

Oh, and always use just one bullet. This game of unloading a clip into a body is reckless and stupid. First, police will instantly know it was a hit and will go right for the spouse which was where half of Billy’s hits came from. Second, it was a waste of ammo which costs money.

Billy’s hits were so good he had never been questioned once. Even on the numerous times when the other spouse broke down and admited to hiring a hitman. It made Billy laugh when he tried to figure how many Adam Smiths or Jackie Joneses were in jail or being questioned for his murders.

Well, it wasn’t murder. Not in Billy’s eyes. It was a job. Just like if an executive of a big company steals another’s idea or something.

Sitting in an old white Honda that he stole, Billy waited for his next victim to come out for a smoke break. Billy didn’t know the person’s name. He never knew their names. He didn’t care. The only thing he cared about was getting the perfect shot. Depending on the request, Billy always aimed for the heart. Even liars and cheaters deserved an open casket in his opinion.

Billy checked his watch.

Three minutes to go.

Then he’d have the Honda returned within ten minutes and back home within thirty.

This case seemed pretty solid because the man he was going to kill had a lot of enemies. He was a defense attorney. He’d probably gotten rapists and murderers kept out of jail and all those victims families would be suspects.

But not Billy.

One minute to go.

Billy slid out the silenced weapon and prepared himself for the shot. Once the victim walked out of the building and to the right, a bullet would storm through his chest. Then Billy would duck down and wait a few minutes before starting the car and slowly driving away. Casual. It had to be casual.

Counting down the seconds, Billy heard a dog bark.

A beautiful golden lab stood on the corner and barked towards the car.

Billy made a kissing sound and clapped his hands and the dog slowly walked towards him.

“Come on, boy!” Billy yelled.

He laid the gun back on the seat. Part of this hit wasn’t to kill a dog so he had to keep it out of the way and keep it from barking in his direction.

The dog trotted forward then stopped. It turned and moved back to the corner.

There was only twenty seconds left until the victim would cross at the corner of the alley.

“Wanna treat?” Billy yelled. “Come on.”

The dog walked back. Once it got to the door of the car, it turned and ran again. Billy recognized these movements, the dog wanted to play.

“I can’t play, I have to work,” Billy said opening the door.

He slowly stepped out. He had ten seconds either grab the dog or chase it away and then get back in the car and shoot the victim. No matter what, though, Billy couldn’t let the dog get hurt.

Billy’s foot touched the pavement and the dog came running towards him again. Eight seconds to go. Billy stood up and clapped his hands. The dog was an arm’s length away. Six seconds to go. Billy turned to let the dog jump in the car and felt a sharp pain in his chest. He looked down and saw his shirt absorbing the blood at a fast rate. He looked around but everything became hazy. He saw the victim standing on the corner. Billy smiled and knew he still had a chance. Then he’d deal with his own bullet wound. He swallowed and reached into the Honda. Before his hand could touch the weapon, he felt great deal of pressure on his head and heard the sound of his skull being crushed.

It was a second bullet wound. Thankfully for Billy it was the last he’d even encounter.


“Seven thousand,” Barry said, handing a laptop case to a man.

“Do I need to count it?”

“No, I don’t play those games. But, hey, I wanted to ask about the dog, that was pure genius.”

“Yea, I knew Billy. He thought he was the best. We were friends when we were kids. We wanted to grow up and be cowboys and fight bad guys. I remember going to his house. He had a golden lab. He loved the dog so much. Then one day it got hit by a car and had to be put to sleep. He never had another dog after that. But I knew he had a soft spot for dogs.”

“Well, you sure do your homework. I can’t believe it. I still can’t believe my wife put a hit on me.”

“I could take care of her, if you want. I’ll give you a returning discount.”

“Eh, not today,” Barry said waving his hand at the hitman. “I think it would be better to see her face when I come home tonight alive. See what she does. But I have your number.”

“No, you don’t,” the hitman said smiling. “The phone’s been destroyed.”

“Well, what if I need your information again?”

“I’ll contact you soon.”

“What about the dog?”

“I returned it back to the yard I stole it from.”

“Boy, you guys won’t stop at anything, will you?”

The hitman tapped the laptop case and smiled.

“Just another day at the office.”

Barry stuck his out to shake the hitman’s hand. The hitman shook his head and pointed behind Barry. Barry turned and threw his hands up half expecting the other hitman, Billy, to be there. Nobody was there. Barry turned back around and the hitman was gone.

Barry walked to his car faster than normal and checked over his shoulder every few seconds. He started his car with his eyes shut waiting for it to explode. It didn’t. He smiled as he stood at the front door to his house knowing he did the right thing by hiring an honest hitman.

“Honey, I’m home!” he yelled walking through the door.

BIO: Jim lives in Pennsylvania and has been published in many anthologies including Flash!, Elements of Horrors, Diamonds in the Rough, and Inner Fears. Other stories have been published in Flashes in the Dark, Twisted Dreams, Pow! Fast Flash Fiction, among many others. He doesn’t sleep, drinks lots of coffee, and listens to Guns n’ Roses. Jim’s web site is


Anonymous said...

nice story- kept me guessing...

Joyce said...

I would love to be able to see his wife's expression when he walked in the door! Surprise! Hitmen sure can't let their guard down, even for a few seconds. This was a terrific story.

Paul D Brazill said...

Top stuff. I was pleased to have it over at my place.