the smuggler’s bible


When they arrive, all that’s left of the caller is a payphone receiver swinging on its line, handle smeared red.

“Dispatch said the alley.”

“Sure did.”

“Fine,” Gauthier says, sliding his baton out of the ring on his belt. “So, I guess let’s start there.”

They find the first kid crumpled and folded in half like an origami crane. Four others are scattered among the dumpsters, variations on the theme.

“Gotta be gang stuff. Turf or drugs maybe.”

“I don’t know.” Gauthier bends and takes something from a victim’s clutching hand, holds up a bright string of pearls. “Seems personal.”