273. Gunsmoke

Gunsmoke tickled his nostrils as the smell of death slowly filled the room.

The damping hole in her head actually improved her looks, the cop that found her on the floor in an expensive pink dress would claim. Chuck Napier agreed. The gal had fallen hard from the ugly tree. Didn’t mean she deserved a bullet through the head, though. If only she hadn’t stuck her nose in his business.

He hadn’t noticed her when a money transaction had ended with three stiff Dagos in a dimly lit New York alley. No looks meant no husband. And no husband spelled no money. So she started blackmailing him. Putting the screws on Chuck Napier, page one detective and famed consultant to the NYPD.

“What would the public think about you dabbling with the mob?” she had asked.

The public. Not the police. She knew he was hardened enough to endure a couple of years in Sing Sing. But he would never cope with negative copy in the Examiner.

For two years he paid her off with ten-dollar bills in a brown envelope in an anonymous post box. By year three she was asking for hundred-dollar bills and Charles Napier wasn’t planning on indulging her greed any more.

Luckily an ugly girl’s weakness was easy to spot. When he shot her through the head the potatoes were boiling on the stove and the roast she’d prepared all day was nearly done. The dinner table was laid out beautifully with her best plates and two burning red candles. The only thing she’d messed up was her dress. Blue dots were hardly fitting for a first date.

For the first time since she started blackmailing him, Chuck Napier took pity on her.

“I bet you’d look good in pink, gal,” he told the corpse.



Did you enjoy this story? Then why not try the 101 stories in 300 words or less in YOU’RE GETTING SLEEPY, THE HYPNOTIST’S APPRENTICE YAWNED.

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8 thoughts on “273. Gunsmoke

  1. Danny James says:

    Not HER favorite I’m sure!


  2. Ebonstorm says:

    He hadn’t noticed her when a money transaction had ended with three stiff Dago’s (plural – Dagos)

    “What would the public (missing word – think) about you dabbling with the mob?” she had asked him.

    “I bet you’d look good in pink, gal,” he told the corps. (spelling – corpse)


    I liked it but damn, Chuck Napier is a cold piece of work. Never want to be on his wrong side.

  3. rvraiment says:

    Sharp writing, nicely done. You have longer stories somewhere?

  4. tympass999 says:

    wish i could write like this,
    every time i strike upon a good plot and start writing, i end up getting the story as a big messy pile of dump.

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