“How do you want to play it? My gen-eral policy is to kill only in self-defense, but, in this case, I can make an exception. I can take her down from two hundred paces and be gone before anyone is the wiser.”
Jirel leaned back in the passenger seat, away from the aspiring hit man at the wheel of the Coke delivery van. Even cut off from direct communication, the Most High’s writ-ten instructions were clear that was out.
The question remained, though. How was Jirel going to protect his charge from the serial killer young Snyder was dating?
Jirel stared at the casino. The lights men thought glamorous only made his head pound and his stomach nauseous, combined with the filthy stench of every sin known to man. If they could smell themselves as they smelled to him, they’d be unable to bear it. Even the enemy despised the stench their work produced; they just found even more repugnant the notion any soul might smell better than them. “This is advanced warfare that you’re not prepared for.”
“There’s nothing on this earth that BlackJack McGraw isn’t prepared for.”
“Trust me. My people will handle this.”
“Excuse me? Army Intelligence, pres-ent company and Snyder excluded, is a bunch of sociopaths and morons.”
“My people aren’t in Army Intelli-gence.” Nor are they people, at least not as McGraw understands the term.
“Given a prophet directed me to you, I’m gonna believe you and let you do your thing. But get Snyder out of there. Ya hear?”
Jirel nodded. “Thank you for the infor-mation, Mr. McGraw. Now please get the rest of this Coke delivered, then return the truck to the person you stole it from, untie him, apologize, and make restitution.”
“You expect me to finish his route?”
“Mr. McGraw, this little stunt has put him hours behind. His employer is quite un-forgiving and will dock his pay if his route isn’t serviced and quickly.”
“How do you know this?”
Jirel stared at McGraw. It’d been so long since he’d had that much information about anything. For His own purposes, the Most High had been letting him experience the grim uncertainty the Fall had subjected man to. “I know Him who knows.”
He climbed out of the vehicle. “Get going, John Edward McGraw, Junior.”
McGraw sighed. “My back’s already hurting thinking about it. Next time I’ll steal a bakery truck.”
“Try not stealing at all next time.”
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