H.L. Pauff

Short Fiction, Thoughts on Writing, Chaos

By

The Hotel Job

hotel at night

“Come on,” Zox whispered and pounded his forehead with his fist. Forty stories below, the city went about its celebrated nightlife unaware of the man pacing around the rooftop of the hotel.

“You can do it. You can. Yes, you can. Don’t say you can’t do it because you can.”

Zox double checked and triple checked that the repel line anchor was secure and then he fiddled with his harness straps. They were still caked with dried blood.

“You’re unlucky funk ends tonight,” he told himself. “No more botched jobs.” He didn’t have much of a choice. One more botched job and the Guild would chop him up and feed him to the pigs.

He dangled off the ledge and lowered himself until he was perpendicular with the building. A faint wailing froze him. A police cruiser sped through the street below. Only after it disappeared around a corner did he exhale.

“Thirty-seven floors down,” he said. “She’s just a woman. You will do it. You will do it because you’re the Goddamn best.”

Zox exhaled and plunged into the darkness. He sped past room after room, but in the darkness no one would see him. The clicker on his harness counted the floors until it reached thirty-seven and then it yanked him to a stop. His momentum thumped him against the window. He worried someone might investigate the noise, but no one came.

He quickly and silently cut through the glass and touched down on the hotel room’s plush carpet. He could hear the mark singing in the bathroom. Zox fixed the silencer onto his weapon. Sweat poured down its handle and onto the floor. He worried his exhales sounded like hurricane force winds.

“One shot. Send her to glory.”

He crept closer to the bathroom and saw her reflection in the mirror bending over the bathtub.

“I can. Nothing will stop me.”

The woman stopped singing. “All done,” she said.

“Is it story time now, mommy?” a little voice said.

-

photo by: Derrick Coetzee

6 Responses to The Hotel Job

  1. Chyina says:

    Ouch, love the twist at the end. I am guessing, perhaps it’s his? Maybe he doesn’t know it’s his, or is now struck that it could be his child? Love it. Well done.

  2. theinnerzone says:

    I was holding my breath, reading through, almost tense and then the ending! Perfect Job.

  3. TNT says:

    An action-packed assault. Fast paced, descriptive, and in a voice your own. I really enjoy the punch and flow of this piece. The twist…man, that was good. Nice.

  4. EagleAye says:

    Oh man! I guess he got stopped after all. Maybe it’s time to switch professions. Great story. I enjoyed it.

  5. Love this narrator. Fantastic tracing of his thoughts. Truly wondering what he will do. Great punch in the end.

  6. Trifecta says:

    Abort! Abort!! Love the twist. Thanks for linking up.

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