A cigarette in one hand and a revolver in the other

Sam sat at her desk, a cigarette in one hand and a revolver in the other. She took a long drag and looked up at the chief.

“What’ve we got?”

“Harry Dunn’s boys are moving the booze to a warehouse in the industrial district. We’re ready to bust ‘em.”

She took another slow drag and narrowed her eyes. “Source?”

“Our man on the inside. He’s scared, but I trust him. We’re not gonna getta better chance than this.”

Prohibition had hit the city hard. The first dry summer, last year, had seen a huge increase in crime. And this summer, people were starting to get really antsy. Sam didn’t blame them. The law was stupid – and impossible to enforce. Booze was still easy to come across. Sam had a bottle of whiskey in the top drawer of her desk. She knew the chief did too. But the chief didn’t seem to have noticed the contradiction of buying from a gang while simultaneously trying to shut them down.

Harry Dunn’s boys, though… they were real thugs. When they weren’t trafficking booze or beating shopkeepers for protection money, they were busy taking petty burglary to unprecedented new levels. If the chief was right, and his source was reliable, this wasn’t an opportunity the force could afford to pass up. The Dunn gang was the biggest in the city – there were rumours it was the biggest up and down the east coast.

She took a final toke and  stubbed out the roach. The grip of her revolved trembled as she slipped it into her shoulder holster. “Alright then. Let’s go.”

“Can I speak to you, detective?” asked a honey-dark voice from the doorway.

The chief jumped. He stepped to one side, revealing a woman’s full-figured silhouette. “Oh, sorry ma’am. You gave me a shock.”

“Sorry,” said the woman in the doorway, her eyes fixed on Sam’s, “but I have something rather important to discuss.”

Sam looked up at the chief, who was shifting his weight awkwardly. “It’s alright, chief. Go.”

He mumbled an “excuse me” as he slipped past the mysterious woman and out of the room.

“Would you care to take a seat?” Sam asked.

The woman smiled sweetly and stepped over to the business end of Sam’s desk. She didn’t sit in the tattered chair there, though – just rested a single pale hand on the chair’s back. “I’m here about the Dunns.”

Sam looked out of the doorway after the chief. He’d already disappeared. “You couldn’t have come to us earlier?”

The woman focused her gaze. “No.”

“Alright. Take a seat, Miss…?”

“Call me Hattie,” the woman said. She didn’t sit. “And I’m afraid your chief has been misinformed.”

Sam tensed. “What do you mean?”

“Right now he’s leaving with the best of the force to bust a warehouse. They won’t find any booze there.”

“Oh, what will they find?” Sam asked calmly. She could still call them back. She began to rise.

“Don’t get up,” Hattie said, casually levelling a pistol. Sam hadn’t even seen her draw it. “And don’t try anything funny.” For what seemed like the first time, Hattie’s eyes left Sam’s and flicked nervously towards Sam’s holster. “Harry sent me. We want someone on the inside. And you’re going to be pretty important around here after today. To the force… and to us.”

Sam gritted her teeth and leant forward in her chair. “You’re barking up the wrong tree. I won’t ever be working for you.”

“That is a shame,” Hattie said, cocking her pistol. Two burly men had appeared in the corridor behind her, each carrying guns of their own.

“You don’t have to do this,” Sam said. “Harry’s a bad man.”

“That’s enough from you,” Hattie said, and pulled the trigger.

*

Sam dived to the left. The familiar buzz whizzed past her and hit the back of her chair. In a single motion she draw her revolver and fired three quick shots. Hattie had already disappeared into the corridor. Two shots hit one of the men. The third flew wide. The man who’d been hit cried out and stumbled, clawing at the air.

“You got me! She got me, Bill!”

Bill advanced on her. Before he could raise his gun, Sam had fired again. The fuzzy little projectile struck home, right in the centre of Bill’s ample stomach. His eyes widened, and then he toppled backwards. “Argh! Grahhhh!”

The handle of Sam’s revolver was buzzing. She climbed to her feet and held it threateningly over the two groaning men. “You got?”

“Yes, we’re fucking got,” whined the one that wasn’t Bill. “Little fucker stung me right on the neck.”

“You two are going away for a long time.”

There was a loud crash from down the corridor. She looked sceptically at her revolver. Nope. If there was ever a time for something heavier, this was it.

Bee Acceleration Devices Associated were the best in the firearms industry, and Sam never settled for anything less than the best. She leant over her desk and grabbed her BADAss shotgun. Fuckers were gonna pay.

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