Hustle by Tom Pitts

Book: Hustle by Tom Pitts Read Free Book Online
Authors: Tom Pitts
waiting for their turn.
    Dustin told them, “Get on the floor, on your bellies, feet up.” First , he taped the biker’s boots together—tight. Then, the boys. No need to knock them out, the biker was the threat. The boys saw what had happened to the biker and they did exactly what Dustin told them to do.
    Dustin checked the room for stuff they might use to break out, tools, utensils, whatever. The place was bare except for the wine. No window, just the one door. Good enough till he knew what to do with them. He thought about killing them, but the idea of dragging their dead bodies back up the stairs didn’t seem too appealing. Especially the big one. If he killed them and left them, they wouldn’t be found for weeks, months even. That seemed like a better option. He thought about telling them this, threatening them, but decided that it might make them too desperate. Leave ‘em with some hope, till you were sure how to kill them, he thought. He locked the door behind him and went up the stairs.
    “What the fuck, dude, who is that guy?” said Big Rich.
    “I got no idea. You think he’s got Gabriel up there?”
    “How should I know? Is this guy okay?”
    Donny said, “How should I know? ”
    “Hey, buddy, you okay? You alive?”
    Bear was motionless, not making a sound. They could hear creaking on the floor above them, the sound of someone walking around. Back and forth, pacing. They heard the loud thump of things being dropped. Then it was silent again. The boys listened, but the footsteps had ceased.
    “Donny, see if you can kick him, nudge him or something. See if he’s breathing.”
    “I can’t reach him. I can’t even fuckin’ move,” said Donny. “What do you think that guy’s gonna do with us?”
    “I got no idea.”
    They lay there for a few minutes, squirming, wriggling around on the cold cement floor, trying to loosen the tape. Then, they heard a scream. It was a long, baleful howl. It sounded distant, but they knew it was coming from inside the house. They knew it was Gabriel. There was silence, then, another scream.
    “You think that’s Gabriel?”
    “Of course it is,” said Big Rich. “He’s torturing the poor bastard. We gotta figure out how to get outta here or it’s gonna be us that’s screaming.”
    Bear made a noise—half g runt, half snore—as though he were deep in a fitful sleep.
    “Well, I guess he’s alive,” said Donny.
    “Can you see his face? Hey, buddy, you alive? Hey. Yo . Wake up.”
    Bear moaned again. Donny rocked back and forth till he tipped over and roll ed into Bear.
    The old biker moaned , “Motherfucker,” as if he were experiencing the worst hangover of his life. He turned his head to get his face off the cement, opened his eyes and let them adjust to the pale light. “What the fuck?”
    “We’re tied up, taped up,” said Donny. “We’re in the basement. You remember what happened?”
    Bear’s voice was full of gravel and pain, “Yeah, I remember. Where is that little shit, Dustin?”
    “He’s upstairs,” said Donny. “We think he’s got Gabriel.”
    “We heard screams,” added Big Rich. “Like, torture shit. Lots of screams.”
    “Who are you guys?”
    “We’re friends of Gabriel’s,” said Donny, talking because he was the closest one to the man.
    “Oh, I know what the fuck you are, don’t worry. I’m an actual friend of Thaxton’s, so I know exactly what you two are. I mean, what are your names?”
    “I’m Donny and that’s Big Rich behind me.”
    Rich said, “Can you move? At all? Can you get us outta here?”
    Bear ignored Rich, “How long I been out?”
    Donny answered, “Not long, maybe twenty minutes max.”
    “My fucking head.” Bear wiggled around for a few moments and then asked Donny, “Kid, can you move? Even a little? See if you can push your feet against the tape on my ankles. Wedge ‘em in there and shove down.”
    Donny did as he was asked and the two began the process of loosening each other’s

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