If I find myself in trouble, my ring has a Roofie prick, and my heels truly are stilettos.
Not to mention that I’ve got a two-inch-long Swiss MiniGun tucked in my bustier. It fires bullets at a speed of 399 feet per second.
Don’t worry. The safety is on.”
That’s a quote from my story, The Housewife Assassin’s Bloody Valentine, which you’ll find in the awesome anthology that the authors on the blog are launching this week: Guns and Roses, a Murder She Writes Anthology.
In that particular scene, my heroine, Donna Stone, is crashing a swank Valentine’s soirée being thrown by a terrorist cell, the Quorum. I wanted her to carry a gun, but with a glove-tight gown, it had to be tiny.
When I saw the description for the Swiss MiniGun, I laughed out loud. I couldn’t imagine firing something so tiny, let alone loading it! But hey, apparently it’s a proven killing machine, so who am I to scoff?
Besides, I’m sure it’s easier to carry than strapping even the smallest LadySmith to your inner thigh, then maneuvering a sexy walk in heels a la Emily in this week’s episode of REVENGE (See below).
You can catch more of Donna in the first book of the Housewife Assassin series, The Housewife Assassin’s Handbook. The second book, The Housewife Assassin’s Guide to Gracious Killing, launches this Mother’s Day (May 12, 2012).
Just so you know: Donna owes her existence to one of the ladies on this blog: Karin Tabke. Had it not been for Karin laughing at Donna’s antics — both domestic and espionage — I would not have had the courage to put her out in the world–
And see her enjoy a bidding war among editors.
As fate would have it, those editors who were excited about acquiring her were shot down (figuratively, if not literally) by their editorial committees, who deemed Donna too dark a character. Housewives killing people? Unheard of!
(COUGH! — Desperate Housewives — COUGH!)
That’s okay. You can’t keep a good assassin down.
Especially one who makes a killer cherry pie.
I hope you enjoy this excerpt, below.
Read the excerpt below, from The Housewife Assassin’s Bloody Valentine, for a chance to win a $15 eGiftCard from Amazon.com.
All you have to do is send me an email with the correct answer to this question:
What name does Donna use in order to get inside the prison?
Email that answer to MailFromJosie@gmail.com. Be sure to put in the subject line” MSW Bloody Valentine Contest”.
WINNER TO MY LAST POST’S CONTEST: What’s a great “Bond Girl” name?
Lynn V., from Texas
THE HOUSEWIFE ASSASSIN’S BLOODY VALENTINE
by Josie Brown
(Excerpted from GUNS AND ROSES (A Murder She Writes Anthology)
Valentine’s Day, 2:14 pm
Isla María Madre rises higher and steeper from the turquoise Pacific Ocean than her sister islands, María Magdalena and María Cleofas.
Am I the only one who finds irony in the fact that Mexico’s notorious prison was built on an archipelago named after the three saintly women who attended the Resurrection?
That’s okay. My mission is a resurrection, too, of sorts:
When I leave, I’m taking the prison’s biggest bad-ass with me.
That would be Hector Negrón de la Moraga, who runs the Diablo Blanco drug cartel out of Mexico’s Baja peninsula. This Forbes 100 billionaire’s cash flows in from the tons of methamphetamine he smuggles stateside. His drug mules are many of the American socialite junkies who hang at his Cabo San Lucas nightclubs and resorts.
But because the gangbangers known as Los Corazónes Rojos are jonesing to take over his territory and have put a price on his head, the first six months of his prison sentence have been spent in solitary confinement.
No wonder he felt it was time to cut a deal with the United States. Spill his guts, as it were.
Before they are spilled for him, all over the prison yard.
He got the Feds’ attention by explaining that he launders his dirty drug money through a blind corporation: a real estate company which builds Mexico’s many gated communities and private stucco palaces. Not only does he know where his rivals live, he’s also got the floor plans of all their estates.
Including the security codes.
Even more important is the fact that he built the villa used as the south-of-the-border headquarters for the most heavily funded terrorist organization in the world:
The United States, Great Britain, France, Germany and Japan want to put the Quorum out of business, once and for all. But some crooked Mexican politicos have halted Hector’s extradition.
Their allegiance is with Los Corazónes Rojos, which has a hit out on him.
That’s where I come in.
My employer–Acme Industries, a black ops agency, which buries all skeletons that the CIA deems worthy of ghost protocol—has been hired to pull off his prison break. In return for pointing out the Quorum’s safe house and providing us with its floor plan and security system data, the Feds will let him live stateside, where he’ll be put in the DOJ’s Witness Protection program.
Hector’s financial portfolio may be humongous, but his physique is petite, which is why his nickname is El Chihuahua. Here’s hoping he lives down to it, since smuggling him off the island won’t be easy under any circumstances.
Now that the prison is within sight, the tug’s low, sad bellow puts all hands on deck. The Mexican flag flaps loudly on the stern pole. I presume no masts are half-raised inside the prison, either.
Certainly not El Chihuahua’s, now that his paid-by-the-hour puta is here.
That would be me.
The other women standing with me on the tugboat’s deck—all wives, girlfriends and whores on their way to their monthly conjugal visits with the murderers, thieves, and drug dealers who live within the prison’s walls—adjust their lips upward into smiles, while tugging the necklines of their too-snug blouses even lower.
In lockup, orifices may be readily available, but bountiful cleavage is not.
My breasts are already propelled high, front and center. My skirt is short and tight, whereas my high heels are long, pointy and packed for a punch: one is tipped with a knockout drug, the other with a serrated blade.
So yeah, I guess I’m ready, too.
There are at least forty guards on the grounds, and another six in the turrets of the towers topping this castle-like compound. Their whistles and catcalls can be heard loud and clear as we women maneuver our way up the chipped stone steps leading to the prison’s two-story solid steel gates.
Being manhandled (ostensibly for hidden weapons or breakout tools) has many of the ladies wincing. But those who, like me, are looking for an extra half-hour with their menfolk smile and purr a few promises they hope will be forgotten when it’s time to leave this hellhole.
The metal detector beeps when I saunter through. The guard on duty smells as if he’s taken a hit off every bottle of tequila that’s been smuggled in today. He presumes it is the thick-ribbed bracelet on my arm that set it off. All the same, he fondles my breasts between his rough palms, as if they’re a pair of ripe melons.
Tit for tit, I pinch his breast harder than he tweaked mine.
“Usted me está haciendo caer en amor con usted,” he says, with a smirk.
Why am I not surprised that he actually likes a little rough play?
“What a douche,” my team leader, Jack Craig, mutters into my tiny diamond stud earpiece. He witnesses that bit of womanhandling through my contact lenses, which are really digital mini-cams. Obviously, he doesn’t like what he sees.
No boyfriend would, right?
“Seriously, Donna, you have my permission to kill him, now, if you want.” By his tone, I know Jack means it.
“Mas tarde, mi amor,” I murmur. Then I lick my lips, knowing that the guard will hear my soft taunt as a come-on.
Later my love…
First things first.
My act is working. The guard is too distracted to notice all the toys, which will get my ass, and my asset, off this godforsaken island. In my clutch bag are my ID (a Mexican driver’s license that identifies me as “Lucinda Gutiérrez”, a nondescript lipstick, a seemingly innocent compact, a change purse that holds a few coins, and a rosary with a small metal cross.
Here’s the plan: Once we’re alone in one of the prison’s flimsy straw love shacks, I’ll clue Hector in on the fact that nookie is out, but a run for the gate is in. Unfortunately, that should keep the smirk on his face. Then I’ll slap one of my tiny, but strong, neo-magnetic earrings onto the shack’s center pole before shooting the other earring—attached to the zip line hidden in my rosary—out the shack’s window with my lipstick case, which is really a miniature missile launcher. The missile’s GPS system will lead it to a three-person submarine anchored about thirty feet below high tide and about two hundred feet offshore where Jack is waiting for us. Once the zip line’s magnet has locked onto the exterior antechamber of the sub, we’ll roll off this hot hunk of rock using my GPS-driven ribbed bracelet as a pulley.
Since subs are the new vehicle of choice for running drugs between Mexico and the U.S., El Chihuahua should feel right at home.
Besides, prison has given him time to get used to tight quarters.
Between the sub’s cloaking system and a submersion depth of sixty feet, we will be able to maneuver past any Mexican patrol boats. At a cruising speed of eighty nautical miles per hour, we should surface at the dock of our safe house in the posh tourist enclave Cabo San Lucas in three hours, tops. There, we’ll debrief El Chihuahua as to the whereabouts of the Quorum’s villa and get the necessary entry data.
After turning Hector over to his Witness Protection detail, Jack and I will break into the villa, download all files on the master computer’s hard drive onto a flash drive and then plant a worm that will allow us to monitor all data going in and out of it.
So that, finally, Acme will learn who is funding the Quorum and break it up, once and for all.
Five years ago, the Quorum took my husband, Carl, away from me and our children.
Time to get even.
And not a minute too soon. It’s Valentine’s Day. My aunt Phyllis is watching my three children—ten-year-old Jeff, his twelve-year-old sister, Mary; and kindergartner Trisha–so that
Jack and I can have a romantic getaway.
Jack isn’t their dad, but he’s the only father they know.
If I have my way, it will stay that way.
Happily. And ever after.
We’ve dodged a hell of a lot of bullets together. Both literally and figuratively.
I lost Carl to the Quorum. I won’t lose Jack, too.
In fact, something tells me that Jack is proposing tonight.
If he does, I have no idea how I’ll answer him. My hesitation has nothing to do with what I know about Carl’s fate, and the role the Quorum played in it.
Maybe I’m afraid of tempting fate twice.
Granted, our version of hearts and flowers is a bit skewed from the norm. More like guns and roses.
My slow stroll through the prison courtyard is serenaded by the jeers and come-ons of the prisoners who, for this month anyway, are unlucky in love. “Siéntate en mi cara, perra…” and “Quiero que me chupe…” are the two most common ones shouted so often, and by so many that, to my ear, they sound like a mantra.
I ignore them, and I certainly won’t translate them now for you.
I’m too much of a lady for that.
Hector’s lawyer has arranged for his client to be assigned the last love shack on the left. I’m sure Hector is in there now, waiting for me. It’s perfectly situated for this mission because it is the closest one to the island’s north shore, where the submarine is anchored.
I’ve almost reached the shack when a guard prods my backside with his semi-automatic rifle. “No no no, puta! Para ahi! El Chihuahua se encuentra en la torre, allí.”
Ah, hell. Turns out that our little tryst has been moved to another location.
He’s pointing to the rickety stairwell that leads to the top of the tower, which, unlike the shack, is made of solid rock. It’s too narrow to hold more than one room at the very top, which has only one high, tiny window barred with wrought iron.
As if that matters. If we’re in there, the zip line will never reach its final destination: the sub.
“Plan B?” I whisper, just loud enough for Jack to hear me. The wooden staircases are steep, and rickety.
“Dollface, there is no Plan B. Frankly if it was up to me, you’d take a shiv to the slime bucket and waltz out of there. But orders are orders.” I hear Jack clicking away on his netbook as he tries to figure another way out for all of us.
Including the odious Hector.
There is just one outdoor landing before the ground floor: on the fourth flight of stairs. I try to keep my head up so that Jack’s reconnaissance is easier, but it’s difficult because my heels are getting caught on every other step. To hell with that. As I bend down to slip out of them, the guard bringing up my rear murmurs, “Culo lindo, pero sus piernas son tan flácidas.”
Should I be flattered he says my ass is cute—or pissed because he thinks my thighs are flabby?
“Hey, what did I tell you? Just twenty minutes on an elliptical would do wonders for you,” Jack says. “No more of that tiny jiggle of cottage cheese on your upper thighs—”
In any language, the extension of my middle finger tells both of them what I think of their opinions.
© 2012 Josie Brown. All rights reserved. This work is protected under copyright laws and reproduction is strictly prohibited. Permission to reproduce the material in any manner or medium must be secured from the Author.