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Captain: Chapter 1

Desi shrugged. “I’m not the one in trouble here.”

Gina frowned then shook her head. “Well honey, you sure got an interesting list of new friends then.”

Captain snorted and shook his head at her. “You got no idea, sweetness.”

Gina raised a brow at him, as she looked him up and down.

Desi shook her head at Gina’s usual animation.

Gina went over to the table and started to take her weapons out. A gun from her back waistband. Then she set her leg up on a chair, and took a knife sheath from her boot. With a sigh, she set her foot back down on the floor. Digging into her T-shirt, she took a small canister of mace from her bra. Next, she dug into the other bra cup and removed a set of brass nucks.

Captain watched her as his mouth fell open.

Finally, she tugged her shirt down over her jeans then paused. “Oh.” She set her other leg on the chair and took out a small derringer-like gun from her other boot.

“The fuck woman?” Captain’s eyes were wide.

Looking over at him, she winked. “You need to pat people down, mister. Not that I would have allowed it, but you get my drift.”

Desi tried to hide her laugh but she couldn’t.

“You dressed for war?” Captain asked as he stared down at the collection of weapons.

“A girl can’t be too careful these days, sweetness,” she tossed the endearment back at him. As all her weapons were on the table now, she pushed them toward the middle. Raising her hand up, she announced to the men in the room, “I do not have my badge with me.” Then she looked over at Desi. “I’ve been worried about you. You and me we’re more than just partners, girl. We’re friends and when I saw the pain and hurt in your eyes, I knew something was very wrong in your world. I tried to stay out of it until you said something but you never did.” Shrugging, she said, “I looked into it and found what you were trying to hide.”

“What was I hiding?” Desi almost didn’t want to know her answer.

“A man named Barrett Raggetti,” Gina told her softly. “He’s one dangerous man.”

Desi nodded. “He’s also the man who raped my mother nine months before I was born.”

Gina nodded. “Yeah, I figured that out.”

Desi slowly shook her head. “You always were the best investigator. Right now, he’s outside the fence line somewhere, hiding from these guys and Leon’s men who are out there looking for him. Then there’s a new set of men on the other side of the gates looking for him too. Men he’d shoved under the bus a few years ago and they want to see him dead. That’s why Captain brought you in.”

Gina cocked her head at her then looked over at him. “Captain, huh?” She grinned. “Well, I do gotta say your ship is rigged up just right.” Her eyes again scanned him.

“Gina!” Desi laughed as she chastised her. “You can’t talk to these men like that.”

“Why not?” Gina braced her hands onto her curvy, jean clad hips. “I call it like I see it.”

“Yes, yes, Gina but… Never mind.” Desi shook her head.

Gina looked around at the rest of them. “So what happens to me now?”

“That, my dear, depends on what you came here to do,” Leon told her.

Gina turned her head to stare at him. “Well, damn. You are a class act aren’t ya? You do know that you’re wearing about five thousand dollars’ worth of threads, right?”

Leon had to smile at her. “At least. So can you answer my question?”

“Sure, it is simple and sweet. I came here to check up on Desi. I’ve always had her back and vice-versa. I have no real power here. No badge on me. I’m here as a friend, not an officer of the Marshals.”

Zeus shook his head. “Well, I got news for you lady. Barrett has threatened to burn us out and you are now standing on the X marks the fire.”

She now looked him up and down as if studying him. “You’re the President here, right? The man in charge. Whoooe, you are big. So I’d bet you have a fierce name too. Like Thunder or…” She looked him over, not the same way she did with Captain, but more like a case study. “Some powerful name, I’ll bet.”

He furrowed his brows at her. “Zeus.”

She slapped her hand on her leg. “Well, of course!” She chuckled. “It fits you and I sure as hell would duck when you start throwing lightning bolts.”

The room went quiet then Leon laughed loudly. Some of the men did too.

Zeus glared at her. “Are you through yet?”

“Don’t ask her that, Zeus. Ok?” Desi tried not to grin at him. “Cuz she will just keep going.”

Gina glanced at her and grinned. Then she focused on Zeus again. “So what are you doing about it?”

“Well, this place has more tunnels in and out of here than a dozen gold mines. And we’re just learning about them. We found most of them hopefully and closed them up to stop him.”

“Hopefully?” Gina frowned at him.

He nodded his head. “Hopefully. We’ve found nine tunnels and then we found out that the tunnels all connect with each other, so we think we caught them all.”

Gina nodded. “Then you all might be interested to know the Marshals have a warrant out for the capture of Barrett Raggetti.”

Delaney frowned. She looked at her grandfather and asked, “What’s he got a warrant out for? He just got out of prison a few days ago.”

“Yeah,” Gina went on. “See, with men like this loser, shit happens. We got some paperwork the day he got out about a jewelry store robbery a long time ago. It’s all we needed to open the case again on his involvement and the last piece of evidence we needed to close the case on him. For good. That man should be in a cage for the rest of his useless life. We don’t know who sent it to us but it’s the missing piece we were looking for.”

Desi stared at her. “Really? That’s weird.”

Zeus glared at her and asked, “You didn’t know this?”

Desi shook her head. “I had no idea. I sure as hell didn’t send it in.”

 ”We didn’t either,” Delaney stated.

Alfredo let out a heavy sigh. “Apparently, my son has more enemies out there somewhere, just waiting in the shadows. His sins are coming to light and now, it’s time to pay the piper for everything he’s been doing. May God have mercy on his soul.”

“God Almighty may forgive him but I never will.” Leon growled.

Gina looked from Alfredo to Leon. “I already know who you are.” She then gazed over at Alfredo. “But I sure as hell don’t know you or your daughter here.”

Alfredo stared at her. “Delaney is my granddaughter. Barrett is her father. I am his father.”

Gina tucked her head back.” So you are both Raggettis?”

Delaney stood from her chair. “We are, but like Desi, we do not align ourselves with Barrett.”

 Alfredo shook his head. “You see, my father Alfonso started all of this with all his wild stories and thieving fingers but Barrett is finishing it. Now the Raggetti name will be forgotten in time. Buried forever in their shame.”

“Their shame my friend, not yours,” Leon reminded him. “You brought this to my attention when you didn’t have to and you have been trying to rectify this mess. You and Delaney have nothing to fret about. As the gold and the money has been returned to us, only Barrett and his sons will be held responsible.”

“But I should have known.” Alfredo hung his head. “I suppose that I didn’t want to know. I couldn’t admit my family was bad until I faced all of this.”

“Grandpa…” Delaney knelt in front of him. “You cut yourself out of their lives a long time ago. You knew in your heart that my brothers were no good. It wasn’t anything you did. It was all on them. They spent years listening to Dad and lord only knows what he told them. The same tales as great grandpa used to tell them most likely and if I know Dad, he embellished those stories until the boys didn’t know what was real and what was made up anymore. Dad never told them everything Great Grandpa told him though. He never would have told anyone the whole truth. I’ll bet he kept one or two secrets in the shadows. He might give them some of the money but he never told them where it all was.”

Alfredo shook his head. “No he wouldn’t have would he? My son is too damn greedy for that to happen.”

“Well, his greed shall be his own undoing.” Leon growled. “For him and his sons. Questa è la fine della linea. This is the end of the line.”


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