Hard Bastard:A Second Chance Mafia Romance(4)By: B. B. Hamel
I found the door marked “Shakeman” and knocked twice.
I opened the door and stepped inside. Rick Shakeman was an old-school District Attorney. He was larger, heavy-set with thick dark hair and a smile on his face.
“Well now, you made it,” he said.
“I’m so sorry, Mr. Shakeman. I had a nightmare trip.”
“I know, I know. Call me Rick. It’s okay.” He shook my hand and gestured at the chair in front of him. “Go ahead and sit down.”
I smiled and sat down. “Really, I’m terribly sorry.”
“It’s fine, quit apologizing. I’m just glad you’re here.”
“Me too, Rick. I’m rally excited to get started.”
He leaned back in his chair. “I hear you’re from these parts?”
“I am,” I said. “That’s why I wanted to get transferred here from Seattle. I guess I wanted to come home.”
“The promotion didn’t hurt, though.”
I laughed. “No, it didn’t.”
“Well, Sadie, we’re glad to have you. I’ve heard great things from your boss out in Seattle.”
“Thanks. I’m looking forward to getting started.”
He nodded and grabbed a file from his desk. “Well, if you’re so excited, why don’t we dive in?”
I blinked, surprised. I assumed we’d walk around the office, maybe make some light chitchat, that sort of thing. The usual first day at the office. I didn’t even have a laptop or a computer yet and he was already handing me a case file.
I took it, curious, and opened up the front. Smiling out at me was a few different mug shots of hard looking men, plus their rap sheets underneath. I whistled.
“Tough guys,” I said.
“That’s the Petrov case.” Rick leaned back in his chair. “It’s the reason you’re here, incidentally.”
I raised an eyebrow. “Is it?”
“You’re the only candidate we saw with any organized crime experience.”
I laughed. “I would hardly call what I did ‘experience,’ but thanks.”
“Don’t sell yourself short. Not even young ADA manages to put a few wise guys behind bars.”
I sighed and shook my head. Rick was talking about a case I prosecuted about a year back. It was a pretty straightforward case about some breaking and entering charges against some mob-affiliated guys. Nobody else wanted to touch it, and I was stupid enough to dive right in.
One witness was scared off, but I managed to find a second at the last minute. I put those assholes behind bars, despite the threatening phone calls I got. I never felt safe in the city afterward, and so I eventually pushed for a promotion and a transfer.
That was how I ended up in Ashertown again. I wanted to get as far away from the Seattle mob as I could.
And of course, now I was getting assigned to another mob case.
“I’m not sure about this, Rick,” I said. “Truth is, the last mob case didn’t go well.”
“Sure it did. You got the conviction.”
“I also got the threatening calls at three in the morning.”
“Well, now,” he said, smiling. “We’ll keep you safe, I can promise that.”
I sighed. That was what my old boss said.
“Come on,” Rick said, standing up. “Let’s show you around the office. You can bring that file with you, look at it on your time, decide if you want the case. I won’t force you.”
“That’s fair,” I said, standing. I took the file and tucked it into my case. “Thanks.”
“Come on.” He led me out into the main office.
The rest of the day was spent exactly how I figured it would. I was shown to my office, or really my corner cubicle, and spend the afternoon getting myself acquainted with the systems.
As I went through the tedious process of setting up my computer and getting situated, I couldn’t help but look at the case file. Three men, all killers and thieves, were arrested for trespassing. They were caught with drugs as well, and the office wanted to pin a few other charges on them from some old cases as well.
It was fascinating. For such a small town, Ashertown had some seriously hard criminals. By the end of the day, I was fully engrossed in the case.
“Good night,” Rick said, stopping by my cubicle door.
“Good night, Rick,” I said, standing up.
“Hope you had a second to look at that case.”
“I glanced at it,” I hedged.
“Good. Tell me what you think tomorrow.”
He nodded and walked away.
I already knew what I thought about it, but I was having a hard time admitting it to myself. I gathered my things and quickly left the building, walking slowly out toward my rental car.