The man and woman met at the side of the building. “We’ve got what we needed,” she whispered, “let’s go.”
In their black outfits, they were able to move through the shadows without being detected. A rather remarkable achievement considering where they were. The woman tried not to shudder. Strangerville was one place that she avoided at all costs. But this assignment had come straight from the boss, Andrew “Andy” Maynard, and she wasn’t in a position to refuse the request.
They didn’t say anything else until they were back home. After changing clothes, they met on the back patio. “Explain to me again what we were doing there,” Malcolm Landgraab said.
“I don’t know all the details,” Nancy, his mother, admitted. “Mr. Maynard called and asked me to go to that place and try to get inside, if possible. If not, I was to get video of the occupants, particularly anyone being held there against their will.”
“That doesn’t make much sense,” Malcolm replied. “Isn’t he usually the one holding someone in places like that?”
“You’d do well not to say things like that to anyone, especially the boss. It’s a sure way to get yourself killed,” Nancy said sharply.
“Yes, ma’am. But still…”
“No buts,” she cut him off. “We did what he asked us to do. That’s the end of it.”
Her phone rang, and she looked to see who it was. “Be quiet. It’s him,” she hissed at her son before answering the call. “Good evening, Andy.”
“Were you successful?” he asked.
“I have the video you requested. I’m still not clear on why you wanted it, though. Frankly, I was half-tempted to go in and rescue the poor man they were torturing.”
“You did the right thing in resisting the urge,” Andy told her. “Those men are ruthless. I doubt you would have made it out alive. I’m not even sure how Phi…how he’s held up this long.”
“This sounds more personal than business, Andy.”
“What it is does not concern you, Nancy,” he snapped. “I’m sending a courier over now to pick up the video. He’ll have your payment, as well as a little something extra for taking care of this so quickly.”
“That is most kind and generous of you.”
“One last thing, Nancy. You and your son better keep your mouths shut about this. There is plenty of room in that desert you live in to bury more bodies.” He hung up.
“You’ve gone pale, Mom. Are you all right?” Malcolm asked her.
Swallowing hard, she nodded. “You are to never tell anyone about this. If you do, it will be the end of both of us. Is that clear?”
“Good boy. I think you’re going to do well in the family business.”
“Too bad half of the family belongs to the good guys,” Malcolm retorted.