It was another late night at the office. Hugodrax was busy looking over some papers and filling out some police reports. The case on the raccoon thief had gone quiet, with no leads and no recent crimes, it had dried itself up and been buried under a pile of papers.
Frevvor entered the office holding a few sheets of paper.
“Captain, I’m on my way home, but I wanted to drop these off.”
Hugodrax looked up from his work and took the papers from him. “What are these?”
“That’s the final report on the Hoffer robbery. Nothing has turned up on anything. The investigators and police have considered it a loss, and the insurance wants an update on it to know if they should compensate for a loss or deem it as fraud.”
Hugodrax tiredly looked over the files and nodded. He set them down and signed off on them. “I doubt it’s fraud. That Hoffer character isn’t the type that would claim fraud. Especially on a rare Ferrari. That’s not something easy to make disappear if you’re not experienced. He’s just an idiot who got ripped off big time. Go ahead and give this to Phorga and have her file it on your way out.”
“Alright Captain. Did you want me to keep on the thief case?”
“No, no that’s old news. I’ve got a drug ring I want you to start on in the morning. That thief has stopped for now and I’m going to let it go for now maybe something will turn up later.”
“Alright. Don’t stay up too late. I’ll see you tomorrow morning.”
“Skreft, wake up.” Cymaenie said poking the brown coon in the darkness of the truck.
He stirred and opened his eyes, yawning and stretching. “What’s up?”
They were parallel parked on a dark, quiet side street with tall, towering shade trees, making the whole street pitch black.
“Alright. Let me get my bearings. What time is it?”
“Quarter to midnight.”
“Fifteen minutes, then we’ll go in.”
“That’s fine. That’ll give me plenty of time to prepare.” Cymaenie said smiling and pulling Tundra’s shirt off and sliding off the shorts.
He reached behind the seat and grabbed his holster and pulled it around his waist and fastened it, and pulled his gun and a magazine from one of the leg pouches and slid it into the gun and turned the safety on then slid it back into its holster. He grabbed his sword and pulled that over his head and started affixing his leg pouches and ankle dagger.
Skreft stretched out his muscles and opened the box of shells and loaded the shot gun, and pulled the holster belt for the .45 around him and fastened it.
He nodded that he was ready to Cymaenie, and fifteen minutes on the nose, they both opened the doors on the Ramcharger and closed them quietly.
Cymaenie slid his backpack on and adjusted the shoulder straps. They quietly padded down the side walk. On their side of the street, there were only a few houses all surrounded by ivy covered tall brick walls. The other side of the street was quite the opposite, packed with three story brownstone condos, all with darkened windows.
Cymaenie knew why they had picked this location for a safe house. The opposite side of the street left a lot of possible witnesses. Cymaenie knew that they only had one shot at this and had to be very careful not to set off any alarms.
They stopped at a break in the brick wall where an iron gate barred the way into the yard. Cymaenie scanned the yard using his wonderful coon night vision to see everything.
He could see no trips and no cameras. He looked over the gate lock and saw that it was clearly wired into the security system. He nodded and dropped down and looked in the space where the gate was locked and saw the contact points.
He tossed his bag off his shoulder and reached inside and pulled out a roll of thin metallic tape. He ripped off a length with his teeth and tossed the roll back in.
With a flick of his wrist, his multi-purpose tool was out and he had a thin flat head screw driver extended. He carefully took the tape and slid it into the crack, and pressed it down to the contact points with the screw driver.
After making sure it was secure, he replaced that tool and removed his lock pick set from one of his leg pouches and quickly flipped through the many different metal tools examining the lock.
He selected one quickly and stuck it into the lock, and jimmied it in, and twisted it, and he heard the lock click over. He pulled the tool, replaced it and shoved the kit back in its pouch.
He twisted the handle on the gate and pushed it open to the yard. He passed through followed by Skreft. He pushed the tape on the wires down firmly and closed the gate again quietly.
“Nice work.” Skreft whispered into his ear.
Cymaenie winked and they headed up to the house. He peered in through the front door and saw the alarm panel on the wall still in its armed status. The front door had three dead bolts and he scratched his head and looked around.
“Wait here. I’ll meet you at the front door three minutes tops.” Cymaenie whispered to the brown coon.
He nodded and ducked behind a bush to remain out of sight. Cymaenie left the front door and started checking the windows on the first floor. Each wired into the security system. He looked up at the second story windows of the brick house.
He headed into the back yard and around a swimming pool to a shed. He opened the shed and grabbed a ladder and lay it in the grass, lifted up the latch catches and slid the extension up, carefully locking it in place without a sound.
He lifted it and looked at the windows and gently rested the ladder against the house. He then carefully climbed the rungs so as not to jiggle the ladder and went up to the window.
He looked in and saw that they were wired the same as the lower floor. He frowned and quickly descended, shrunk the ladder and put it back in the shed.
He went back to let Skreft know that he was going to take a little longer than anticipated.
“Take your time. I don’t want you setting off the alarms on this place.” He whispered. “You can get in right?”
“Yes. But I have to take it up a notch.”
“I’ll wait here for you.”
Cymaenie nodded and headed back around to the back yard to a glass sliding door which was covered in open door trip sensors. He opened his bag and pulled out his glass cutter.
He pressed it to the sliding door and began cutting a large hole. This took him about a minute, and he carefully pulled the circle out and set it off to the side on the patio and he poked his head inside and looked around.
Making sure there were no floor lasers, he slid himself inside, reached back out and grabbed his pack. He cautiously crept through the house, his feet making no noise on the wooden floor. He crossed to the front door and moved his bag to his chest and slid out his laptop.
He opened it, turned it on and while it was booting, he pulled his tool and pried the face off the security system. He looked over the circuit boards and dug in his bag and pulled out a split wire with two tiny clamps on the ends of the wires which ran to a solid wire and plugged into a USB port.
He tapped on the touch pad and opened a security system cracker, then took the wire clamps and pinched one on a tiny soldered node, and the other to a tiny transformer.
He let the computer do the rest, and inside of ten seconds, he was in the system. He shut the alarm off, while keeping the output saying it was on to avoid suspicion from the security company.
Satisfied, he pulled the wires, and replaced the faceplate, unlocked the three locks and opened the front door and looked to the security system which didn’t register anything out of the ordinary.
He smiled, and slid his lap top away. Skreft entered and looked round and Cymaenie winked and gently pushed the door closed. He motioned for the brown coon to do his business, and he wandered into an office and looked around for where the evidence would be stashed.
He started looking through filing cabinets, and flipping through folders, when there was a loud sound and he jumped, whirled around and pulled his gun all within a second.
It was a loud thud, followed by many more for a few seconds before ending in a loud thunk. He flipped the safety and in a crouching walk, snuck out into the main room to see Meedim lying contorted at the bottom of the stairs.
He kept his gun on him and rounded the corner to see Skreft coming down the stairs quietly.
“Not necessary. He fell down the stairs and broke his neck.” Skreft winked carefully stepping over the body. “Any luck?”
“Is there anyone else in the house?”
“Nope. Just him. That’s why I was able to do it so noisily.”
Cymaenie nodded. “No. Nothing yet. It could be hidden anywhere in this house.”
“Well, what’s your idea? Break up and search?”
Cymaenie had an idea wash over him. “The alarm is off. It won’t detect anything. We can take this one step up.”
“What about a house fire? He panicked, lost his footing and toppled down the stairs.”
“How won’t that look like arson?”
“The alarm won’t go off. That is clear that it’s malfunctioning. All it will take is some faulty wiring.”
“Don’t you think someone will notice before the place burns down?”
“Not if we expedite the process.”
Cymaenie stepped over Meedim’s corpse and headed for the back sliding door. He opened it and stepped back outside, picking up the round piece of glass and tossing it immediately inside where it shattered.
“The door will break in the fire. Doesn’t matter about that.” Cymaenie whispered motioning for Skreft to follow.
They went back to the shed and he opened it revealing several cans of gasoline and a lawn mower. Cymaenie nodded to the cans and they carried two each back into the house.
“Alright. Now what?”
“You douse everything on the second floor. I’ll get the main floor, when you’re done, take the cans back and put them back, and I’ll work on the wiring.”
“Gotcha.” Skreft said heading up the stairs quickly with the two cans.
Cymaenie quickly doused the office, the living room, an empty master bedroom, the halls, the dining room and the kitchen, then set the empty cans by the sliding door.
Skreft finished the whole second floor and came down the stairs to see Cymaenie fraying several wires in a wall panel and draping them on the gas covered floor and replacing the wall panel. He carried out the four gas cans and put them back in the shed, closing the doors.
“How’s that going to work?” Skreft asked curiously coming back in.
“Simple. When the sprinklers turn on, they’ll short, and should get this place cooking. Lock the front door, and make it quick.”
Skreft hurried, locked the three locks and ran back.
Cymaenie nodded and they exited out the sliding door. He reached in through the hole and locked it again and pulled out.
“When do the sprinklers turn on?” Skreft whispered as they made their way around the house.
Cymaenie opened the gate, locked it, closed it, then fished his piece of tape out from the gap. He tossed the balled up tape down the sewer grate and turned back to the house and looked at his watch.
“Right about now…” he said. They watched the front of the house intently.
It was quiet, and suddenly, there was a yellow light from inside the house. He smiled and watched as it quickly spread to all the other rooms on the first floor, then slowly the second story windows all lit up.
“Lets go.” They ran down the street to the Dodge and climbed in. Cymaenie started the truck and they roared off glancing over at the property. Due to all of the thick old trees, the whole house was shrouded from view.
“That’ll be a lost cause before the fire department ever gets here.” Skreft said. “Good call. I doubt we even needed to worry.”
“Maybe not, but its better to be on the safe side. Nice work with Meedim.”
“It was nothing. I couldn’t have done it with out your help.”
“It seems we make a good team.” Cymaenie laughed as they began their long journey back south.