TITLE: SMOKE SIGNALS
Lamar Gallivant drifted outside a coffee shop as the Mercedes rolled up at exactly 9:45. A passenger in the sleek four-door with tinted windows and Georgia plates lobbed a disposable cell phone near the curb. When the sedan crawled out of sight, Lamar fished the prepaid burner from a pile of leaves and powered it up. A text message spelled out his next target’s address.
He hiked his baggy jeans and blew past the knot of college chumps huddled around a food truck. At East Bay Street, he zigged north alongside the Cooper River. Rainbow Row gave way to sun-bleached blah. Broken street lamps replaced copper carriage lanterns. Seersucker couture morphed into overstuffed stretchy pants.
Less than two miles from Charleston’s opulent Battery, the road forked through the dilapidated row houses and subsidized apartments of Fleet Landing. The east-side neighborhood was almost dead—close enough to call the coroner. Lamar plopped on a bench to retie his boot laces and shake off a flicker of unexpected jitters. He raked his fingers through his hair and longed for the inky darkness that’d made him invisible on his previous jobs. He knew he should bolt—call it quits. But eight grand was a lot of money and Falcon had him by the balls. He absently inspected the pickle jar in his backpack filled with homemade napalm—a blistering concoction of toilet bowl cleaner and gasoline.
The trouble with trouble…
Lamar pushed up the sleeves on his hoodie and squeezed between two houses.