Lieutenant Ted Baines was disappointed in himself. How could he not have seen what was right under his nose? Due to his implicit bias, he'd thought those two gangsters were the culprits, not knowing it was one of his own men.
He hated it when men who swore to serve and protect, did a one-eighty and became what they were supposed to fight. Damian of all people, too.
Baines who'd always thought himself to be a good judge of character, couldn't believe he'd sorely misjudged him. His only consolation was that he wasn't the only one. Damian had fooled them all.
From the information had been able to gather, Baines learned that Matteo had begun to suspect Damian, and had planted the cameras in the building to catch him in the act.
Then he'd confronted Damian who responded by shooting him dead. Then, when Damian had asked to be given time to console his partner's widow, he'd actually gone back to the crime scene and watched what was on the
At last, Baines spoke, “How am I sure this is real, not some fabrication?”Ash spread his hands on the table, “You're a lieutenant. I'm pretty sure you'll find the same things I showed you, if you got your people to look hard enough.”Baines regarded him closely, “What's in it for you?”“If you're asking if I'm doing this for some reward or favor or something, the answer is no. Josiah's one of the bastards whose operations put Ganghaven in such a desolate state. He needs to pay for the lives he's ruined.” Ash said. He'd told Baines the truth, but not all of it. Back in Sia's clinic he'd vowed to eliminate all threats to her, both actual and perceived. One of those, was his father.Josiah, in order to get back at Ash could kidnap, maim or worse, kill Jo. In order to prevent that from happening, Ash had decided that his father must be in a place where it would be impossible to do that; jail.
Jo forced a smile on her face as she opened the door to usher Andrea and Sia in. She was still living like a hermit in her mother's house, and she didn't want to diagnose what that said about her. She was making progress, she told herself, she was going to make a conversation with her friends even if it killed her.Andrea and Sia noticed her staring into space.“Yo! Earth to Jo!” Andrea said, snapping her to the present.“You okay? We could come back later, if you wanted.” Sia said, leading Jo to the nearest chair.Jo allowed herself to be led and when she sat down, she said, “No. I invited you here. We're going to do this.”“Ok. But there's no pressure,” Andrea said, turning on the television. There was a boring news broadcast going on, so they paid the television no mind.“How's your injury?” Sia asked, switching to physician mode.Jo raised her blouse up and let Sia examin
Ash heaved a sigh of relief when he saw Capo.“It's good to see you, boss.” Capo said with a grin.“You too, my man.” Ash said bringing in Capo for a hug. He didn't think he could explain how much he'd missed his second-in-command. Capo was his loyal confidante and adviser, who had never let him down. He felt so free with him.Too bad he couldn't say the same for the vultures under him at Greenwood Holdings. They were sycophants who only wanted to be friends with him so he could give them something in return.“How's business?” Capo asked.Aah grimaced. Even with his degree, running a company the size of Greenwood Holdings was difficult, “It's coming along. Yours?”“We've shut down most of the business your old man was running, which leads me to ask; after we finish the task, what next? Do we disband and look for other things to do?” Capo asked.Ash shook his hea
Ash and Pascal sat at their favorite table in Jacob's diner as they waited for their orders to arrive.It had been Pascal's idea to come to Jacob's because Ash had been melancholy ever since he returned to Ganghaven. In fact, Pascal didn't understand what was going on between Ash and Jo.Last he heard, Jo was so in love with Ash, she'd taken a bullet for him. Ash had also been head over heels in love with her. He was sure the lovebirds still loved each other, so why were they even apart.I may never get to understand love, he thought.He looked at Ash who was caught up in some memory of some thought.“Yo, what are you thinking of, man?” Pascal asked, trying to distract Ash from his bad mood.“You know, I first met Jo here.” Ash said with a sad smile, “She was sitting at our table with her friends.”Pascal groaned inwardly. While trying to get Ash to quit thinking of Jo, he'd only compounded the prob
The next day, Ruth heard the doorbell ding and went to open it. She didn't see snyone, just a package left on the doorstep.It had a tag which said 'For Jo'.She brought it into the kitchen and called Jo who was still in her room.Jo hurried to the kitchen, “Mum, who delivered that package?”Ruth shrugged, “I don't know. It only says it's for you.”Jo assessed the package critically.“Should I open it?” Ruth asked as she moved to do so.“No! Mum!” Jo said hastily.Ruth gave her a curious look, “And why the hell not?”Jo thought to what Ash had said about his father trying to get her, “Just let me handle this.”She opened the package and sitting innocuosly in it was an apple pie with the words 'I love you' inscribed on it.“Ash,” She said under her breath. He was trying to use apple pie to win her back. Her heart beat furious
Ash was in his old apartment in Ganghaven, which he preferred to the plush company quarters in Gulden when there was a knock on his door.Thinking it was Capo or one of his other men, he took his time to open it.He was greeted by the glorious sight that was Jo, her mouth in a hard line. His heart beat faster as he considered the idea of having her in his apartment although from the look on her face, she wasn't there to accept his apology.Well, he would any win no matter how small, he assured himself.“My apartment isn't much but do you wanna come in?” He asked graciously.Jo scowled. Seeing him face to face had awakened a hunger which had been steadily growing. How could someone look this handsome, she thought.Jo knew if she entered his apartment she might lose sight of why she'd come here in the first place and jump him.“No.” Jo said stubbornly.“You want to create a scene for the punks who li
e.”Ash wanted to laugh, “Of course I do. Is it just sinking in now?”Jo nodded, “So you left Gulden to become a gangster once again?”“No,” Ash shook his head, “About that. I was actually meaning to come over to your house with a proposal.”Jo got a confused look as she wrinkled her nose, “A marriage proposal?”Ash replied, “I would have gotten to that, but no. I meant like a business proposal.”Jo nodded, “Let's hear it.”Ash got into business mode and outlined his plan for them to set up a school and a charity organization that'd be run by both their gangs.Jo let him finish his pitch, and after that she walked up to him, “I'm sorry for doubting you, Ash.”“I'm sorry for running off on you too.” Ash said as he kissed her. This time, Jo didn't protest.He carried her over to the bed and laid her down