Scene 3: How Many Girls

After assaulting the bartender, stealing the keys to Vespa, and promising recompense, Gary pursued Ms. Valis as fervently as the max. 40MPH bike could handle. Skinner has unlocked the gates for him timely by calling the resort’s security. Gary didn’t know what Skinner HD said, but he knew the entire team was going to be deep in water with threats and promises. An unsaid assumption that the whole team would cover it up and not report this news to Charlie Guillard. Guillard would likely report this to Mr. Vilas and the entire team would likely be shot.

“And that’s only if the brat can keep her own mouth shut,” Gary thought as he raced after the little red lights in the distance. He kept his own light off so he could follow her unnoticed.

When Ms. Vilas had entered the local town the speed of her vehicle slowed and Gary was able to catch up. He tailed the SUV for ten minutes, giving updates to intelligence as she went.

Finally, she stopped. The door opened on the passenger side and Ms. Vilas exited. She looked up at the top of the building which carried a symbol, lit by an under-mounted light. A cross.

“It’s a church,” Gary whispered to Chatterton and pondered what the lady crime was doing there.

Ms. Vilas walked up the steps and opened the door. Gary quickly climbed on top of a nearby building so he could see in the roof.

“I want ears in there, what do we have?” Gary asked.

“What’s the street address?”

“1450 Talmon,”

“I’ve got a landline and a cell in there.”

“Can you tap either?”

“I’ve already got the cell.”

Gary did enjoy the perks of working for a multi-billion dollar drug organization. The tech invested into the intelligence teams was quite significant.

“Padre, Fidel,” Ms. Vilas’ voice was heard through Gary’s earpiece as if she were on the other side of a small lake. He could see through a window Ms. Vilas and a man embracing.

“It’s good to see you, Carmine,” Padre Fidel replied. The two of them were speaking Spanish. Luckily for Gary, he knew that language well.

“You too, Padre. So, shall we get straight to business? How many girls do you have for me?”

Gary flinched. The other end of the line was dead with silence.

“Is she… working?” Gary thought to himself.

“Sixty-three,” Padre Fidel replied to Ms. Vilas.

“That’s all? I suppose it’s better than none.”


“And how much per head did we agree upon? Five, right?” Ms. Vilas said as she looked through her purse.

Padre Fidel nodded.

“So that’s thirty-one and a half.”

Gary heard Skinner’s voice over the com. “She’s not talking thousands, is she?”

Gary could see the thick bundles of American dollars place onto a table. “I think so,” he said in amazement.

“Thank you, Carmine. They’ll be in a container by Monday. Can I text you the freighter number?”

“That’s just fine. Thank you, Padre,” Ms. Vilas began to walk away from the man toward the door. She stood out of Gary’s line of sight.

“You know, I’ve never asked what you do with the cash, anyways,” she said in a familiar perky tone.

“And I never ask what you do with the girls, do I?”

Ms. Vilas laughed and then walked away from Padre Fidel’s cell phone’s reach. Gary couldn’t see or hear her and she hadn’t come through the church’s front door.

Gary climbed down from the building he was on and began creeping toward the black SUV Ms. Vilas had driven in. Suddenly, he was tripped and fell to the ground. A small set of hands quickly ripped the earpiece from Gary’s ear and yanked the cord out from underneath his shirt, disconnecting the audio feed to Skinner at intelligence.

“Whatcha doing, Pitt?” Carmine Vilas asked with an agitated sort of chuckle.

“You left the resort!” Gary exclaimed as he got to his feet.

“Yeah, so?”

“What were you doing in that church?” Gary demanded.

“Oh, I’m sorry. Since when do I answer to you?” Ms. Vilas folded her arms and flicked her golden hair. There was a nearby streetlight flickering.

“It’s my job to keep you safe. And part of that is knowing where you are at all times.”

“Sounds like you didn’t do your job very well then, hey?”

“Listen here, brat,” Gary said as he stepped toward her threateningly.

Carmine Vilas wasted no time by allowing the conversation to escalate any further. She thrust her flexed fingers into Gary’s throat. His immediate reaction was to grasp his neck. She used this as an opportunity to seize his wrist and elbow. She stepped behind him and forced his arm behind his back. She struck the back of his knee with hers, causing him to fall. But he didn’t for Carmine was still holding his arm in a way that if he didn’t hold up his weight, his shoulder would dislocate our of its socket. He crouched there, streams of pain shooting through his arm and throat.

“List here, Pitt,” Carmine Vilas began. “You didn’t see or hear me in that church. I was on the resort, in my suite, the entire night. Got it?”

Gary wheezed out a “yes.”

“If you report this to Charlie, daddy will probably kill you,” Carmine said as she released her grip on the man’s arm and allowed him to tumble to the ground. In the struggle, she had reached for his gun and taken it out of his holster. She didn’t want him to make any more mistakes that night.

The security team had agreed on keeping the instance to themselves for fear of their lives. Carmine has returned to her suite where her friend and body-double was waiting for her.

The next day, Carmine cancelled the rest of her vacation and was to catch the first flight back to Vancouver. Pitt kept his distance, as did the rest of the team.

“Do I know you?” a man with a floral shirt said to Carmine as he passed her. She was on her way off the resort but stopped to talk.

“Probably not,” she said.

“Yeah, I think you were on the same flight as me. Vancouver, right?” He stuck out his hand. “I’m Eddie Chung.”

Carmine smiled a fake smile. In her experience, anyone who introduces themselves with both their first and last name is one of three things: wanting to know your first and last name for various purposes, some sort of narcissist, or using a fake name. Carmine didn’t know which one this man was just yet.

“Carmine,” she said as she shook his hand. She allowed her hand to be limp and frail. “And no, I’m not from Vancouver. I flew in from Detroit.”

“Oh, okay. Well, hey. Want to get some food or something?” he asked as he scratched the back of his head.

“Maybe next time, Eddie Chung. I’m on my way out.” She said his name with a tone she couldn’t help using. It made Eddie feel uncomfortable as if she knew he was one of three things.