Chapter 1

Felix and Carlos were on the run, on the run from the Feds, having escaped from an overturned van being used to transport them and three other prisoners from a county jail to a district court. Felix and Carlos, along with two of the others, were due in court to face demands that they be deported to their native Mexico. Most everyone on the legal side of the aisle agreed that deporting two serious felons, such as Felix and Carlos, was a travesty of justice, and simply deporting them only meant that they would be temporarily unemployed.

As a young boy, Felix had shown great promise to the local thugs as an aggressive, nearly fearless pre-teen, who specialized in depriving random individuals of whatever cash they may be carrying. A woman of any age who happened to be carrying a purse or pocket-book with a strap over her arm soon found her armload just that much lighters as Felix had adroitly severed the carry handle without so much as a faint touch to the woman. By the time that she realized that she was no longer carrying her purse, Felix was long gone, down the street and around the first corner.

Much more of a challenge, but also more rewarding was the extraction of the wallet in the pocket of a business man's suit as he walked down the sidewalk of the commercial area of the city. To assist him in this endeavor, Felix had discovered a pencil sized device that fired a very strong burst of air, simple air, but it was string enough, when discharged against a man's crock, to drop him to his knees. In the resultant turmoil, Felix relieved the man of his wallet and continued on down the street, avoiding the crowd of onlookers forming around the now bellowing man.

Keeping such success from older thugs was hard for a young man and soon he was visited by two quite evil looking men who politely invited him to accompany them to a meeting elsewhere. Felix wanted no part of such a meeting and, in a classic case of self defense, demonstrated the effectiveness of his air tool on the larger of the two men, before turning and bolting for the exit. As bad luck would have it, Felix opted for the exit at which the thugs had parked their car, running directly into the driver as he stood outside the door. Truthfully, that was the best outcome that Felix could have experienced. Running into the driver brought him into direct contact with the occupant of the vehicle, thus assuring himself of surviving the onslaught of a now furious, but somewhat hobbled gangster. Actually, the events of the previous two minutes enabled to leader of the group to fully appreciate the little tool that Felix had discovered. A subsequent examination by a physician of Felix's hapless victim confirmed the absence of any visible bruising or other marks, thus eliminating one of the most popular categories of evidence in assault cases.

Felix graduated from purse snatching to debt collection, teaming with the more mature members of the group as they visited well meaning citizens who had fallen behind in their payments. To a man in need encouragement, Felix would press his pen against the crotch of the man, firing the air blast at his testicle. If that was not sufficient, Felix would politely explain the next blast would be more centrally located, with slightly more force, just sufficient to insure that the man would never be able to have sexual relations again.

Most of the people that Felix encountered were owners of small businesses - bars, bodegas, dry cleaners and the like - businesses that occasionally needed additional capital, or sometimes needed a little protection from other nefarious types. These owners predominantly were men, but not exclusively. The machismo of the Latin community discouraged any violence against women, but sometimes Felix had no other choice. On those rare occasions requiring Felix's special talent, he carefully placed the pen on the side of a woman's nipple and discharged the air in a direction across her chest. The resulting pain approximated what she may have felt had he simply torn the nipple from her breast, yet this action rarely drew even a drop of blood. Felix made it quite clear to the unfortunate woman that the next level of activity would completely destroy her breast.

Terrorizing the Latino community on a relatively routine basis just qualified Felix to be named a major irritant to commander of the Regional Anti Gang Task force. Being a "major irritant" simply meant that if one of the officers were to happen upon young Felix in the regular performance of that officer's duties, Felix presence in the city lock-up would be most welcome, but his personage was not so bad as justify the expenditure of funds to locate him.

That status changed about ten days ago, when Felix, along with his low life companion Carlos, paid an unwelcomed visit to the home of a Federal Magistrate who was in the process of presiding over the trial of one of the original founders of Felix's organization ... During a short recess, a quick call from his home telephone to the magistrate in his office confirmed to him the presence of two men in his home, one of them currently enjoying the companionship of his teen aged daughter, most assuredly against her will.

His Honor was encouraged to dismiss all charges in the current case, without prejudice, so that they could never be brought again. In the brief telephone conversation, the Magistrate refused to comply, and Felix was forced to demonstrate his skills on the judge's wife. Sadly, this particular judge was a man of honor, a staunch conservative who believed that the law prevailed over all else. Even after Felix had fired his air pen directly into the iris of left eye of the judge's wife, his Honor was steadfast and amidst the screams of pain, hung up the telephone. So that he could not be identified, Felix destroyed her right eye as well, and then he and his companion departed the scene.

Within the hour, Felix had elevated his stature from "major irritant" to "find at all costs."

It's truly hard to say just how they managed to be discovered by a Deputy Sheriff of Brown County, but discovered they were, fast asleep in a sleazy motel on the outskirts of a small town. The night clerk had apparently seen the images of Felix and Carlos on the late night news just as the Deputy had entered the lobby of the motel for his nightly cup of coffee and fresh donut. In a matter of minutes, the Deputy, gun drawn and at the ready, unlocked the door to their room and affected the arrest of the two men.

The Brown County jail was under contract with the Department of Justice to act as an overflow holding facility for persons in the process of standing trial in Federal courts. As a standard procedure, a Brown County Deputy would load any prisoners due in court during the next week into the transport van and deliver them to the Federal holding facility in the city. Normally these transfers took place late at night to avoid as much as possible the unwanted attention of curious onlookers.

The capture of Felix and Carlos unintentionally coincided with the weekly transport loading, and the Deputy in charge at the time made the decision to include them both in the van, since there was adequate space available. He left specific instructions that the Sheriff was to be called and asked to notify the Feds of the capture and transport of the two men.

Sadly, as happens too often when people envision their fifteen minutes of fame, standards and routine procedures were omitted. In a hurry to get on the road and into the limelight, the Senior Deputy failed to thoroughly search his new prisoners. Twenty minutes into the trip, on a very desolate part of the route, the last thing the Senior Deputy felt was something touch his left ear before the blast of air punctured his eardrum, entered his ear canal and turned most of his brain into something approximating cottage cheese. Felix leaned forward, grabbed the steering wheel and allowed the vehicle to slowly crash into a ditch in a wooded area.

Felix and Carlos were out of the van in seconds. With the aid of the Deputy's keys, they made short work of their handcuffs and leg restraints, grabbed his cell phone and took off through the woods leaving their fellow passengers to fend for themselves. Uncertain of their exact location and without aid of any light, their escape progress was slow. After walking for hours, they stumbled across a small hunter's cabin and decided to hide out there until daylight.

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Story tagged with:
Mystery / Violent /