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Chapter 7

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Edward lit a cigarette and studied Zane and Lincoln. His two new protégés sat across the desk from him. Their backs ramrod straight. The pair were cunning and ruthless, skills honed by a long stint in the company with his son before his death. They could have a successful career with the agency, however, the temptations of extreme wealth and autonomy had convinced them to join Edward.

"Is it taken care of?" Edward asked. A plume of white smoke hovered above his head in the unventilated room.

"Yes," Lincoln said. "The body should be dissolved by tomorrow night. The next day at the latest."

"Good." Edward shifted his gaze to the corner. "And pulverize any bones or teeth that are left?"

"Of course." Zane pulled out a piece of bubble gum and shoved it in his mouth. "You don't have to tell us how to do our job."

Edward flicked ash onto the bare concrete floor. "Sorry. I'm used to working with amateurs."

"Well, now you have us. We could have questioned your niece for you, so you didn't have to get your hands dirty."

"No. She was my responsibility. I will let you pour the sludge down the drain."

Zane pretended to plug his nostrils. "Sure, but I can't say I'm looking forward to the smell."

"Me either," Lincoln agreed. "I assume she talked. How bad is it?"

Edward shook his head. "It could be worse. She told the widow that she was in charge of the money laundering scheme, not me."

Lincoln said, "It sounds like there is a 'but' coming."

Edward ground out the half-smoked cigarette on his shoe. "But the boy's asshole father apparently collected some evidence against me."

Zane popped a bubble. "Damn.

"Not good. Will this affect our plans?" Lincoln asked.

"It might," Edward said.

"We were planning on moving the operation overseas next month anyway," Zane said.

Edward said, "We may have to move up our time scale."

"No problem," Lincoln said. "That shouldn't be a big deal. Is it?"

"No." Edward tossed the remains of his cigarette across the room. "But I'll want to tie up any loose ends here first."

Lincoln sat forward in his chair, rubbing his hands together. "So what's our next move?"

"My niece said that the traitor left a letter for his widow. I don't know how those thugs missed it when they tossed the house."

"You get what you pay for," Zane said.

"Ain't that the truth? Luckily, Kelly claims she has a copy of the letter on her phone. The letter should have a clue to where he hid the evidence."

Lincoln rubbed his hands together. "Great. Let's see it."

Edward opened a drawer and extracted her phone and set it on the desk in front of him. "But I didn't get the passcode from her beforehand. Either of you good at hacking into these things."

Zane and Lincoln both stared at it. "No. That's not our forte, and I bet the acid already dissolved her fingerprint."

Edward shook his head. "It doesn't look like she never enabled that function. It wants a six digit code."

"That means there are a million possibilities," Zane said.

Lincoln raised an eyebrow. "I know a geek IT guy from the company. I bet he could get into it, but he's down in Virginia."

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