A Hawk Novel.
When Spenser is out of town on an extended trip to the Far East, it's up to Boston's number one enforcer to take up the slack. Rita Fiore, once one of the Commonwealth's fiercest prosecutors, is now in private practice and enjoying the rewards of her labors as a senior partner in one of Boston's most prestigious law firms. And life couldn't be grander. At least that's the case until two men try to grab her one morning while she's out for a jog. They don't succeed, but when word reaches Hawk, he makes it his personal mission to protect her and find out who was behind the attack. Soon both he and the police realize that there's more going on than they know, and more than Rita is willing to tell. As the body count adds up and the cops become increasingly frustrated, the only person Rita can trust with the truth is a man she has known for years but barely knows at all. For Hawk it's a lot less complicated, and nothing that he can't resolve with a long barreled .44...
“Cops sho’ do like to ask a lotta questions,” Hawk said.
“Well, Hawk, you did just shoot four people,” Spenser said.
“I only shot three,” Hawk said.
“Well okay,” Spenser said. “Shot three, bludgeoned one with the barrel of that field artillery piece under your jacket. Happy now?”
“’Course. You know us brothers like to keep our records straight when dealin’ with the white man.”
Spenser snorted and turned to stare at the gathering of cops a few feet away. Hawk saw all the regulars were there. Quirk, Belson, even the one a little light in the shoes, Lee Farrell. All of them doing just what cops do after people get killed. Put up yellow tape and start asking everybody what they saw.
Spenser and Hawk had already answered a whole bunch of questions, and Hawk knew they weren’t done yet. Marty Quirk was running this scene personally and that man didn’t let anything go. It was his job and he was good at. What’s more, he liked it. Took pride in doing it right.
A few minutes later, Quirk turned and looked at them, then glanced at Belson and said something. Belson nodded and then said something to Farrell.
Belson and Farrell came over to them, Belson chewing on the back end of a tiny cheap cigar.
“What’s the word?” Spenser said.
“Word is you and Hawk are bad for the department’s crime stats,” the Boston Homicide sergeant said, looking directly at Hawk as he spoke to Spenser. “But the captain thinks maybe you did the world a little good by dusting those bozos. Seeing as how they were trying to take out an esteemed member of our state’s fine legislature.”
Lee Farrell grinned.
“Yeah, even if he is a homophobe and a demagogue, and made all of his money by marrying and divorcing several very wealthy women in the Commonwealth.”
“The American Dream,” Spenser said cheerily.
Belson shook his head.
“New American Dream. Anyhow, looks like you two are off the hook. Everybody backs your version of things, including the senator. Guys got what was coming to them. So Marty says you two can go, but adds that you shouldn’t leave town right away. Just in case something else turns up.”
“Yeah,” Farrell said with another grin. “Like we come up with a witness that says you guys attacked and killed them unprovoked.”
Spenser stared at the younger detective for a moment, then nodded.
“Well let me know if such a person shows up,” he said, glancing over at Hawk, and then back at Farrell. “Because I’m sure my friend here would love to have a quiet conversation with them.”
Farrell stopped smiling then, probably realizing that the expression on Hawk’s dark face suggested that he was not in the mood for jokes. Truth be told, the expression meant nothing. Not much mattered to Hawk. Not much bothered him one way or the other. He didn’t care what people said or believed or laughed or joked about. It was a free country. Just as long as somebody didn’t get on the wrong side of him and a job. Like those four dead fools running around calling themselves Urban Warriors did tonight.
Belson repeated his instructions from Quirk, saying that they could go, and Spenser and Hawk turned and did just that.
“Where your client at?” Hawk said as they climbed into the front seat of his brand new Escalade, sleek and black, just like its owner.
“On his way home with an escort from the State Police. Healy arranged it.”
“Didn’t see him here,” Hawk said.
“He wasn’t, but one of his guys was. Muscled black guy in the gray suit, military style haircut and mustache. Detective lieutenant with the Staties. One of Healy’s right-hands.”
Hawk nodded, putting the Caddy in gear.
“Must be nice being a state police captain. Most normal folks I know only got only one right hand.”
Spenser grinned and put his head back against the rest.
“Well look at us, Tonto. We both have two right hands.”
Hawk didn’t say anything as he drove through the intersection and turned right on a red light.
A minute went by before he nodded.
“And four really mean right hooks.”
Spenser grinned again and closed his eyes.
“And then there are the jabs…”