rlfj: Blog

And So We Come To An End

August 10, 2018
Posted at 12:13 pm

I am publishing the last two chapters together, since the Epilogue is so short and obviously relates to Chapter 22. It's been a hell of a ride with Grim's latest adventures. I'd like to think most people enjoyed it.

As one reader commented, Jack giving Grim money to repair his house could well cause tax ramifications from gifting. Yes, Grim could be hit with IRS problems because his house was shot up by terrorists. I didn't want to get too technical, so I left that out. Still, it could happen.

For those who are curious, police consultants do exist. They do many of the things described in the story and are paid well for their services. Grim might be small potatoes at the moment, but can anybody believe he wouldn't do well? In fact, in a few years' time it might be something I could do another story on. We'll just have to see.

It amazes me how I continue to get complaints about politics in this story. When I wrote A Fresh Start between 2011 and 2014, the main character was a moderate and centrist. Such individuals no longer exist in American politics. I doubt I could write a story like that any longer. American politics is no longer an argument between liberals and conservatives but has devolved into a blood sport, with real blood. Political parties have become religious cults. How long before people begin showing up at political rallies, on either side, and begin shooting? We are more fragmented as a people than at any time since the Civil War. I am terribly afraid for our country.

Until then, I will continue writing. I have a project in mind for which I will need some assistance. Anybody out there a Force Recon Marine? Let me know. Thanks.

Chapter 21

August 7, 2018
Posted at 2:52 pm

Still lots of disagreement about how Grim should handle his insurance company not paying for the damage to his home. I think I will stick with how I handled it.

Major error discovered. It was pointed out that attempted murder, even of a police officer, is not a capital crime. It only becomes a capital crime (death penalty) if the target actually dies. Therefore, the attempted murders of Little Billy and Grim don't get the death penalty. However, the deaths of the other six terrorists do qualify for a death penalty. Talk about irony! I rewrote the sections this was mentioned.

Also, while I have seen the Special Agent In Charge referred to as SAIC, it seems the official FBI acronym is SAC. Fixed.

I am trying to avoid politics in this particular story, but some is going to have to intrude. A half-dozen terrorists getting shot up in Georgia is going to guarantee something political is going to happen! Reminder: If I write that a liberal says something liberal, it is a character in a novel! It is not something I particularly believe. Cool your shit down!

In a politically related item, Governor Deal mentions having Lieutenant Governor Casey Cagle say something, since he was running for Governor. At the time this occurred in the story, March 2018, that was correct. Since then, in real life, Mister Cagle lost his primary. Just thought I would mention it.



August 3, 2018
Posted at 1:56 pm

Again, a few typos that were caught and fixed. Many thanks.

Lots of speculation on what happens next with Grim. Some was right on and some was wildly off the mark. You will just have to keep reading.

A huge amount of outrage about Grim not being covered by his homeowner's insurance. Lots of readers wrote about this. Some of the suggestions (edited for brevity):

"The FBI is not the final adjudicator of what is terrorism or a terrorist event. If the insurer declines coverage, sue them. Local courts will decide, and I doubt six guys and a driver make this 'terrorism'. It is simply attempted murder of a police officer." Sorry, I think that if the FBI and Homeland Security declare it terrorism, it will take a judge who likes being overruled to rule for Grim.

"Point out that the story of a faceless insurance corporation screwing a MOH holder who was targeted for murder because of his lifetime of service to his country and community is not going to play well on TV and the Internet." Very true, but no insurance company will chance a precedent where the next attack could be much, much worse. One reader even told me that his insurance company, hereby known as Brand X, would make such an exception. I checked with my own agent, who also worked for Brand X. He confirmed they wouldn't pay!

Anyway, enjoy!

Rescue - Combat Aftermath

July 31, 2018
Posted at 1:01 pm

My diligent readers found a couple of small typos and errors. A quick edit and upload took care of that. Many thanks. I do pay attention.

Several readers wrote with info about how Grim should have used a different rifle or a specific ammunition, or how such and so a round would have penetrated body armor, or how he should have seen the armor. A few general comments.

First, it was the middle of a cool night; terrorists are people too and may have been wearing jackets. Second, at the range Grim shot from, a frontal hit with NATO 7.62 from an M-14 might have penetrated body armor, but there are different types of armor and he was firing from the side, not straight ahead. Would that make a difference? Finally, why use an M-14 and not something more modern or specifically tailored to the task? As I mentioned earlier, the rifle was Grim's personal weapon, a weapon similar to one he carried on his second tour in Iraq. The M-14 is powerful, accurate, and reliable. It is old school, heavy duty, and hard core. Want a description for Grim? How about old school, heavy duty, and hard core!

Every once in a while, somebody asks where I come up with the names of characters. They're usually pretty normal names, but every so often I have to give into my strange sense of humor. Brutus and Beefy, two of the cops at the hospital, were named after some English Bulldogs various in-laws owned.

Finally, I received a donation from an individual named dms1964 to my PayPal account. Normally, when I receive a donation, I write back through my regular email and thank them and offer to send them the story in whatever format they need, but this individual did not leave an email address. I therefore give a public and sincere Thank You! It was much appreciated.


July 27, 2018
Posted at 2:46 pm

Nothing like a little action to liven up a story. Grim is in combat again. Enough said.

There was a fair bit of interest in my details of police economics. Many readers weren't aware of some of the details, and others agreed with the costs and said it could be even worse. One point I want to add - the costs of the police do not include the costs of jails and prisons. Totally separate departments! When somebody is arrested, they are typically taken to the local police station, but that would have nothing more than a few holding cells and drunk tanks. If they don't get arraigned and released, they typically are moved to the local jail, which would have its own officers and costs and budget. They are typically stuck in a jail until they go to trial, and if convicted move from the jail to a state prison. In New York City, the NYPD has an annual budget of $5.6 billion. The NY City Department of Corrections, responsible for the infamous Riker's Island jail complex, has its own force of officers and an annual budget of about $1.4 billion. Then, if somebody is sent to prison, they become the property of the NY State Department of Corrections, with a budget of $3.2 billion. Like I said before, this stuff ain't cheap!