Cross and Double Cross







By Metró L. Ink

“You’ve been staring at him awfully long haven’t you, Steinhauer?” Andrews said, snapping her ID badge shut. Always had to prove her credentials to her fellow agents.

“He’s the informant we’re looking for. Followed directions—literally down to the buttons on that black trench coat.”

Andrews slid next me and she put her arm close to mine—a little too close.

“Will you need help with the suitcase?” she asked.

“Don’t you think a big, strong man like me can handle it?”

“I mean extracting the information.”

“I’m pretty sure I can do it.”

“You sure?”

I was used to her questioning my preferences—just not my competence.

“He’s looking at his watch. That’s the cue.”

“Don’t forget the password.”

I stood up and straightened my white trench coat. While the attendants and other less coordinated passengers nearly fell over during a turbulent section of the train tracks, I continued to seat D26. I smirked; he was even sitting in the exact position expected.

His head was turned to look out the window, though he sat in the aisle seat—giving me a spectacular view of his Adam’s apple bobbing in his throat. I wished he had shaved his 5 o’clock shadow, but I’ve found it very easy to forgive in the past. His short, black hair brushed against the top of his jacket collar and his espresso eyes finally woke me up.

I nodded my head towards his watch.

“Armani or Omega?”

“Neither,” he said. “Rolex.”

I’d never been able to resist the South American accents.

I sat down next to him. I eyed the suitcase on his lap and waited for him to excuse himself to the restroom.

“There’s been a leak.”

I unlatched my gun holster.

“I’ll plug it up,” I said.

“Don’t be so sure, Steinhauer.”

No one at the bureau says it right.

His superiors obviously can, though.

“Is your fridge running?” he asked suddenly.


I barely saw his black, blurred form race through the back of the cabin.

I found the ladder and climbed up, following the sound of suitcase clatter against the roof. I was able to get my hands on the handle of the suitcase before he could make a break for it; now it was my military training against his brute strength.

“You’ve been betrayed!” he yelled. “We all have!”

“Give it up, and I don’t have to kill you!”

“It’s too late for me.”

His higher ups knew, then. He didn’t have to say so.

I yanked the case to my chest, pulling him close to me in the process.

“It’s never too late,” I whispered. Then I pushed him off the train, into the grassy field.

I kneeled down and opened the case. Good; the case was empty. I found the coordinates engraved at the top of the case.

A cold metal barrel caressed my neck.

“You forgot to ask me if I prefer the window or aisle seat,” Andrews said.


4 thoughts on “Cross and Double Cross

  1. Parisianne Modert says:

    Here is a detective scene with language more modern than film noir, compressed, but well organized for the limits that flash fiction plots allow, dialogue which has a bit of original snap and cutting wit that is sensible to follow and continuity from start to finish. At the finish is the crescendo moment of betrayal which would make the next scene compelling to continue with as well as linking the reader back to where the betrayal originated from. This is not my genre of story, but I found it lively and worthy of reading a second time.

  2. Michael Stang says:

    Nicely covered, good action, even felt something for the characters. All on a moving train. How can it get better than that?

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