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The Boss

Story ID:10460
Written by:Michael Timothy Smith (bio, link, contact, other stories)
Story type:Fiction
Location:Caldwell Idaho USA
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OurEcho Preface This post deals with a mature theme or contains explicit language. While the post is not extremely violent or pornographic, it does contain language or explore a subject matter that may offend some readers. If you do not wish to view posts that deal with mature themes, please exit this post.
I was entered in the Writers Weekly 24-Hour Short Story Contest today.

Here is the topic, word count I was required to work with and my entry.



Sitting on the porch steps, she stared, ignoring the
scent of lilacs from the overgrown bush. Her heart
lurched when she saw the mail truck approaching,
dust in its wake. Would it arrive today? The ancient
mail carrier took his time handing her some envelopes
and, finally, a large package in brown paper. As he
drove away, she dropped the envelopes on the porch,
and walked quickly around the side of the house,
praying nobody inside saw...


WORD COUNT: Stories for today's topic must not exceed 950

My entry.

The Boss

Sitting on the porch steps, dressed in a gaudy pink housecoat, matching
slippers and a cluster of curlers knotted in her hair, Nora stared, ignoring the scent of
lilacs from the overgrown bush. Her heart lurched when she saw the mail truck
approaching her quiet Brooklyn street.
Would it arrive today?
Bob, the ancient mail carrier took his time handing her some envelopes and,
finally, a large package in brown paper. As he drove away, she walked quickly around
the side of the house, praying nobody inside saw.

She walked down the steps and entered her basement apartment. It was a dump,
but after today, she’d find a better place. Nora loved payday.

Out of sight of prying eyes, she began to open the package. It seemed heavier
than normal. She felt her excitement rise. Maybe the boss gave her extra.

Two blocks away, Vince and Carl sat in their car and watched Nora’s building.

“What’s taking so long, Vince?”

“Maybe she’s so excited she needed a crap. How the hell do I know, Carl?”

After what seemed like an hour, but was probably only five minutes, Vince and
Carl shielded their eyes as a bright flash lit up Nora’s apartment. Her windows blew out.
The three story tenement lifted two feet off its foundation and came back down with a
crash. As the building began to fall in on itself, the concussion rocked the car they sat in.

Even from two blocks, they felt the wave of heat from the explosion. They turned
and fled. Old Tom, the mailman, was waiting for the next drop off. “Serves her right for
wearing that outfit.” Vince said.

“And for crossing the boss.” Carl laughed. “No one crosses the boss.”

“Or wears pink house coats.”

“I bet it’s not pink anymore.” They both laughed at that.

They made three more stops that morning, killing double-crossers. Brooklyn
firemen thought they were dealing with a major gas leak in the sewers. What they really
dealt with was something more deadly ...The Boss

Vince said to Carl, “Call ‘The Boss’ and give him an update.”

Carl took his cell phone from the inside pocket of his tailored suit. A few
seconds later he said, “Boss, it’s Carl. The job is done.”

“I saw on the news. Good job, boys. There’s a bonus coming your way.”

“Gee, Boss! Thanks.”

“Listen …”

“Yeah, Boss?”

“Before you return, there’s a little tidying up to do. Visit our mail carrier
friend and make payment.”

“Will do, Boss.” The phone went silent.

“Boss wants us to visit our carrier and pay him.”

“I anticipated that. We’re three blocks from his apartment. You have your

Carl nodded.

They parked on the street, waited for dark and entered Bob’s building.

They climbed the stairs to the third floor. It was quiet. Most of the tenants were
drugged up and sleeping. Vince said, “With what we pay Bob, you’d think he move
somewhere better.”

Vince knocked on Bob’s door. They heard the old man shuffling to the door.
Vince thought to himself, “If he’s wearing pink slippers, I’ll shoot him myself. If he’s
wearing curlers, I’ll strangle him.” This brought a smile to his face.

The door opened two inches. Bob’s eyes appeared in the crack, just above the
security chain. He saw his visitors and paled. “Hey, guys. What can I do for you?”

Vince smiled and said, “Bob, the boss was thrilled with your work today. He
wants to give you a bonus.”

Bob felt his dinner rise in his throat, but managed to say, “No need. I’ve been
paid.” He swallowed hard.

“Well,” Carl said, “The boss thought you did such a great job, he wants to give
you a bonus.”

“That’s OK. Why don’t …”

Before Bob could tell them to keep it, Carl kicked the door. The chain broke. The
edge of the door slammed into Bob’s cheek. Carl thought he heard a few bones break.

They entered Bob’s apartment. Bob lay on the floor clutching the right side of his

Vince looked down as Bob tried to scoot away from them. “Nothing personal,
Bob. This is a risky business. You’re now a risk. Drugs kill many people.” He looked at
Carl. Carl nodded, pointed and fired a bullet close to Bob’s heart. Blood spurted upward
while both men jumped back, afraid to soil their suits.”

Bob stared at them, tried to say something, but only gurgled as blood filled
his throat and mouth. He twitched and died.

“Damn it, Carl. He didn’t need to suffer. Next time go for their head.”

“I was just having a little fun, Vince.”

“You’re sick!”

A week later, Vince and Carl sat with “The Boss” in his favorite restaurant.
It was the boss’ birthday. The liquor flowed. The top in their business were there. Music
played. Women strutted.

A table in the corner was piled high with gifts. The presents would be expensive.
If you wanted to live in this business, you paid well for it …or you didn’t live.

A wisp of smoke drifted unnoticed from the stack of presents. The room erupted
in bright light. The ball of fire torched the guests instantly. The windows blew out, either
from the blast, body parts or perhaps both.

The next day, forensic teams scoured the building and the streets below. Two
blocks away, they found a singed envelope.

Inside was a note, “Happy Birthday, Boss. Enjoy my gift.

PS When I opened my pay, I heard a hissing and ran from my apartment before your
payment blew me out of it.

Too bad you won’t get to read this.

Nora – The New Boss.

Michael T. Smith
Word count 944