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Trafficking DeathPen

About the 2nd Novel

The boys are back. Set in eastern North Carolina and South Carolina, in New Bern -- the home town of Dr. Calder Miro and Homicide Detective Kenilworth Brown -- the capital city Raleigh, the coastal towns of Morehead City, North Myrtle Beach and Oriental, and the wilds of Montana and rural Ireland, Calder and Worth take the reader into a suspenseful forensic psychological page-turner about the international crimes of pedophile rings, human trafficking, and sex slavery.  Kirkpatrick's second novel follows these two friends as they deduce and sleuth their way into the heartless world of a corporate psychopath. Trafficking Death is a contemporary mystery novel of international crime and local justice.

Chapter 1
Here, Hold My Beer, and Watch This

Western Montana

"Whadda ya mean, ya want more money?" Augustine shouted into the phone.

"I didn't know I was carrying a load of illegals.  They's women and kids. I think one of 'em's sick. It's too risky. Runnin' illegals 'cross state lines is federal stuff. I want ten thousand more in cash, or I leave 'em where they are."

"Have they seen your face, Bennie? Can they identify you?"

"Ya think I'm stupid? 'Course they ain't seen my face. I picked up the truck like we planned, but I was told I was haulin' fuckin' electronics. Electronics, my ass. Soon as I got movin', I heard 'em crying and bouncin' around back there. I covered my face and looked. And whadda ya know, my cargo was a bunch of girls and kids, yappin' and yellin' God knows what. Smelled like shit and vomit. Ten grand more or I'm outta here."

Augustine stubbed out his cigarette and considered his options. If he screwed this up, Alexi would come down on him hard. He had to handle this asshole carefully.

"Okay, calm down. My boss ain't gonna like your changing the deal like this, but I can see your point. You shoulda been told what was in the truck. You're right. The stakes are high. Don't panic and don't do anything dumb. I'll give you five thousand tonight and another five when you finish your run. I'll make things right with my boss. Can you live with that, Bennie?"

"Yeah, I can live with that. Five grand in hundreds tonight. Same when I'm done."

"Okay, we have a deal. Give me your location and I'll send one of my boys to you with the money right away. Stay put. I'll get the rest to you when you unload in Kentucky."

Bennie gave Augustine his location, but Augustine just smiled. Alexi required all his shipments to be tracked, and the truck had a GPS transmitter. Augustine could see on his laptop screen this scumbag and his human cargo were less than a mile away. Can you live with that? No, you cannot live with that.

Through an inebriated haze, Augustine formulated a solution he considered brilliant. Things had gotten hot at the Canadian border, and he knew Alexi was shifting most of his American trafficking routes from the northwest to the southeast. He'd paid for his motel room for the next three days, so he figured he had enough time to take care of this bastard himself. I need a little clarity. He snorted another fat line of blow into each nostril, swilled a strong pull off the bottle of Jack he'd been drinking all day. He made sure his nine millimeter was loaded. I know I'm loaded. Stuffing the bag of remaining coke into his jeans pocket, he struggled into his fleece-lined rancher's coat and gloves, slipped on his boots, grabbed his room key card, and stumbled out into the snowy night. He had enough presence of mind to grab a flashlight from his car. I'll take care of this. Ten grand my ass!


Half running, half sliding out of the woods just above the roadway, Augustine heard the distinctive clatter of the truck's idling diesel. Augustine snaked his way through the shadows and approached the truck from the rear, where he pounded his fist on the rear door. Startled, the driver yanked open his door, and jumped out of the cab onto the light covering of snow on the pavement. He realized how cold the air was. I bet them bitches is freezin', he thought. As he neared the rear of the truck, Augustine stepped from the shadows and without a word, slammed five rounds into Bennie's chest. Augustine staggered to the driver's body. Steadying himself with his left hand on the truck's door, he flared his nostrils and inhaled the cold mountain air. He put the final round in the bastard's forehead for good measure. Can you live with that?

Wiping some snot from his nose with the back of his gloved hand, Augustine circled around to the truck's right side and shined his flashlight into the steep ravine. That'll work. He nodded his head approvingly. His coke and whiskey-addled brain thought dumping the body into the remote Montana canyon was pure genius.

Screams came from inside the truck. He hit the rear door hard with the heel of his hand and yelled, "Silencia! No mas! Shut the fuck up!"

The terrified human cargo went silent.

Augustine dragged the driver's body through the light snow to the shoulder's edge. Below him, the Montana canyon gaped up at him like a hungry predator. He cleaned out Bennie's pockets, then rolled the sucker over the edge. He heard the body crashing pell mell into the steep canyon. Augustine peered into the darkness, but his flashlight cast a weak beam. Good riddance.

Feeling woozy, Augustine hauled himself into the driver's seat. He'd drive the truck to Kentucky, drop the load, and fly back. Nobody'd be the wiser. After a couple of miles, he tossed his gun, the dead guy's wallet and cell phone over a small bridge, then made his way to the intersection of the secondary road and the interstate. To his relief he saw the welcoming glow of a twenty-four hour truck stop. He needed some caffeine. As he turned into the lot, there was a loud blurp of a siren shot. "Motherfuck!" he shouted at the sideview, as flashing blue lights flooded the mirror.



bass guitar