It took thirty-one seconds to complete the mission.
Thirty-one seconds to eliminate a small town family.
From the moment they opened the front door, having disabled the porch light first, the clock was ticking. No alarm sounded, no lights flashed; a testimony to time spent by the mission commander’s people hacking the security alarm company’s servers.
Four figures dressed in dark jumpsuits, tight-fitting ski masks, the moonlight occasionally glinting off hard eyes. Their wrists were taped to the double surgical gloves they wore. The same gloves that clothed the hands holding the pistols with their long suppressors. No DNA was the objective. Any hope the cops would solve this one would end here. Their transport, a panel van, along with all their clothing and shoes, would be torched within a few hours. The weapons melted down, as was standard procedure.
None of the four had ever seen the faces of the other members of the team before tonight. All wore facial prosthetics when they met for the first time three hours ago. They had quickly donned ski masks, and wore these over the fake features. Not one had spoken; not a single word. Only thumbs up from each one after the briefing had finished. The briefing had been done via an encrypted voice link. They could be seen by the mission commander, heard if they made a sound, yet they could not see him …or her. Voice distortion delivered a flat, deep voice with metallic overtones.
Floorplans were available. Some photographs of the inside of the house; images of the objectives taken from a distance. Four; one for each to dispatch. The team leader assigned locations and targets to each. A taped area on the warehouse floor served for practice run-throughs. Timed. Initially, more than a minute to complete. More efficient after the tenth trial. Then they worked on what-if scenarios, creating resistance from the house occupiers, or finding them in unexpected locations.
Two hours, and they were confident. Again, no words; a raised thumb sufficed. The tape was torn from the floor and rolled into a sticky ball, then bagged and thrown into the van.
Two hours three minutes and they were ready. A last weapons check. Then board the panel truck.
Two hours five minutes, they pulled out of the warehouse and drove to the highway.
…and thirty-one seconds.
Two adults. Two adolescents.
Mission completed successfully…
…or so they believed.
We hope you are enjoying the book so far. To continue reading...