Dead Man's Hand MobiPocket
By Jack Frost
Private investigator Jake Coleman retired from the U.S. Army and settled back in his hometown of Alexandria. When the father of a childhood friend asks for help, little did Coleman know it would prove to be an adventure that calls upon all his experience and that of his friend, Gator, and fiancee, Monique, to escape with their lives.
Sensuality rating: 0
Cover Art by Simon Nightingale
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I’dput Gator Simmons up there as the toughest son of a bitch I’ve ever known.We had a history only men serving together in combat can appreciate.When I called him to watch my back, he was always there, no questions asked…yet here he was, sitting across the desk from me, sobbing like a baby. A broken man.Like a wounded animal, his cries came from deep within.I waited, knowing as with all victims of tragedy, the first shock would give way to reality.
“Jake,” he stammered. “Are you sure?It was my Queenie?”
He pulled a grimy handkerchief from the back pocket of black Dockers and wiped his nose and eyes.
He was wearing a white tee shirt with Festival Acadiens on the front, above a smiling man playing a Cajun accordion. The tee shirt stretched tight across his chest and flat stomach.His given name was Leslie Bryan Simmons, but from the day on a dare he’d grabbed an alligator by the tail and proceeded to wrestle the beast to submission before dragging it back into the bayou from where it came, he was called Gator.He was twelve years old at the time and it was a small alligator, but the legend was born.
“Yes, Gator.It was Louise...uh…Queenie.”I pushed a box of tissues toward him in case he wanted something clean to use.
“Where?” he asked.
I opened a folder in front of me.
“Marksville,” I told him.“The hotel at the Paragon Casino Avoyelles.They stayed there two nights.”
“Who was she with?”
“Who was she with, Jake?Tell me, dammit!Who was it?”
The reason I took the time to gather my thoughts before going on was the fact that Gator Simmons is someone I’d never want as my enemy.With a shaved head and bushy red mustache, he carries a solid two hundred and sixty pounds on a six-foot-four frame, with hands the size of a baseball glove. Cords of muscles rippled down his arms as he leaned against my desk. His hiking boots with steel toes are specially-made to fit his size fourteen feet.
Gator is a bail bondsman out of Lafayette.My office is in Alexandria about an hour and fifteen minutes to the north via Interstate 49.He and I had once shared an office in Alexandria, but he felt there was more business in a larger populated area with more crime, and therefore more prisoners out on bail, many of whom decide the grass is greener in another city or state.
~ * ~
Gator was on the rebound from his second marriage when he met and fell in love with a Cajun girl from New Iberia whom he met at a music festival.She was younger than he by fifteen years, but from the moment he set eyes on her his fate was sealed.Dynamite couldn’t have blasted away what he felt for her.