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Teresa goes to Podeka, Kansas to find out what is going on with the duffel bags of money.  She gets a picture of who killed whom.  And she thinks she knows where the money is.  Go with Teresa on her journey to find the money.  You may want to send well wishes to those who have it.  Enjoy Part 11 of The Drop House.

 

PODEKA, KANSAS

 

TERESA AND TWO OF her employees stood in the hallway of Bernice and Pete’s house.  The four thousand five hundred square feet log cabin was gorgeous.  It was also immaculate except for a few things out of place.

 

Teresa and three of her employees had taken a few hours to get to Podeka, Kansas.  The jet flight was an hour.  An SUV was waiting for them when they landed at the small airport in Spellville.  Spellville was a town that was fifty miles from Topeka.  The driver of the SUV drove them twenty minutes to a waiting helicopter.  The helicopter let them off in a field at the edge of Podeka where a woman and man were waiting for them in a Dodge Caravan.  A Toyota Prius sat on the side of the road, empty, near the field.  Teresa and her employees drove off in the Dodge.  The man and woman went in the opposite direction in the Prius.

 

Inside the house two of the employees watched over Teresa and looked and listened for anyone approaching the house from outside.  The third employee was in the Caravan waiting for them. He was parked off the road and out of sight.  He could see any vehicles that came into the area.  At the first sign of anyone he was to call Teresa.  Then, he would pick them up down the road away from Bernice and Pete’s house.  The trio would meet him at a specific location. He would be waiting for them.

 

Teresa preferred to confront someone if they came to the house while she worked to find the money.  But Helen had ordered her not to draw attention to herself or the situation.  Helen had been blunt.  Do not kill anyone if it can be avoided.

 

Still, Teresa knew Helen would be pissed if she knew Teresa had not followed her instructions on how to go to Podeka.   Helen had drilled the lesson into her.  The fewer people who know you were in a town, the less chance of getting caught.  And, the fewer lies you have to tell.

 

Teresa decided she would not tell Helen they took a faster route to Podeka.  Besides Teresa had her own resources to get her and her team flights, cars and anything else they needed to do their job with.  Helen was not the only one with secret contacts.  She had some secret contacts too.

 

Not to mention, she had shortened her trip to get to Podeka because of Helen anyway.  Helen had made the trip sound urgent.  Although her voice had been calm, her tone had been serious.  Now, standing in that house, it was evident the trip was urgent.

 

Teresa stood in the hallway between the kitchen and the dining room.  She and her employees had walked through the house already.  Teresa had walked through the house and near the bodies three times.  A picture of what happened was starting to emerge.

 

Teresa looked at the body near the back door.  The dead man’s name was Joe Frohm.  She counted five bullet holes in his back.  His pistol lay a few inches from his right hand.  She looked down at the body closes to her.  His name was Charles Barnon.  She walked back to Bernice and Pete’s bodies inside their bedroom.  A small dog was hanging from the wall by a knife.  Someone had driven the knife through the dog into the wall.

 

Teresa’s two employees quietly watched.  She walked back and forth—stopping many times to think.

 

Anyone who had worked with Teresa knew she was highly intelligent.  She could look at certain situations and tell people how they would play out.  This was before any action took place.  This situation, however, was new territory for her.  No one had ever stolen money from them.  A few people had tried over the years.  But they were unsuccessful in their attempts.  This time may be different.  Maybe they would be successful.  Teresa doubted it while she was thinking it.

 

Section 2

 

PODEKA, KANSAS

 

TERESA WENT BACK INTO Bernice and Pete’s bedroom.  She examined the back of their heads.  But she did not touch them.  It looked to be four bullet holes in each of their heads.  She put her hands together and pointed her fingers in the shape of a gun.  She then pointed her fingers at their heads.  First at Pete’s and then Bernice’s.

 

She walked out of the bedroom and around the corner with her hands still in the shape of a gun.  She pretended to shoot the dead man closest to her.  Then she walked passed him and stopped at the dead body close to the back door.  She did not turn around.  She just stood there.  Then she looked over her shoulder at the dead man behind her.  Then turned and looked back through the back door’s window.

 

“Okay,” she said aloud to herself.  “Okay.”  She inhaled deeply.  “Who sees this?”  She looked at the two burly men with her.  Each carried automatic machine guns.  “Who wants to go first?”  One of the men told her they would prefer to listen and learn.  “And you shall.”

 

Teresa walked back to the doorway of Pete and Bernice’s bedroom.  Then she looked at the front door and walked back to it.  “Here,” she said.  “This is when the decision was made to take the money.  The plan was hatched before they got here.  The decision was made here.”  She pointed at the floor in front of the door.

 

“The carriers,” she would not say their names, “took the bags from this door to the back door,” Teresa said.  “They set them there.”  She pointed to an area next to the dead man’s body who was not near the back door.  “Our guy near the back door must have told our guy back here that he had to talk to Pete and Bernice.  Or, something like that.  Because some sort of way he got Bernice and Pete to go into their bedroom.”  She went and stood by the bedroom.

 

“There’s no way Pete and Bernice would have invited strangers into their bedroom,” she said.  “Not even our employees would’ve gotten into their bedroom.  Which makes me think our guy could have forced them into their bedroom.  Either way, he did it, he had them get on their knees.  Then he made them lay on their stomachs.  They probably thought he was just going to take the money.  Why not let them have it and not put up a fight?  Bernice and Pete knew we’d get it back.  So, why risk their lives?  But our guy had other plans.  He executed Pete first and Bernice second.  It was fast.”

 

Teresa walked up to the first dead man.  “Then our guy,” she pointed to the dead man near the door.  “Told this guy,” she pointed to the dead man on the floor beside her.  “This is ours for the taking.”  She pointed to the floor where she thought the money would have been.  “Wait.”  Teresa backed up to the bedroom again.  “No.  That’s not what happened.”  She stared at the back door, quietly.

 

“Our guy there,” she said and pointed to the body near the door.  “After executing Pete and Bernice he came out of their bedroom shooting.”  She walked up to the dead man close to her.  “Five bullets in the back.  Never knew it was coming.  His hand held onto the gun while he was falling to the floor.”  She looks at the dead man near the back door.

 

“He,” she said and pointed to the dead man by the back door, “knows his friend and coworker is dead.  Why?  He just killed him.  So he casually walks toward the back door to look out.  Find his escape route.  But, not so fast.  He,” she pointed to the body near her, “still has his gun.  And, he’s not dead.  Even with five bullets in his back, he manages to raise his arm and fires five times.  Each shot is in a perfect location.  Our guy by the back door falls to the floor dead.  Our savior,” she points to the body near her, “dies seconds or a few minutes later.”

 

Teresa’s employees look on and nod in agreement.

 

Section 3

 

PODEKA, KANSAS & KENT, NEW JERSEY

 

TERESA LOOKED THE ROOM over.  She was sure she had figured things out so far.

 

“Now the money,” Teresa said.  “It sits the entire night in here until the morning.  And then it moves.”  She looked at her watch.  “It couldn’t have gotten far.  Look down.”  She and her employees looked down.  “See the drag the marks.  Because the hardwood floors are light and the marks are so light you could miss them.”  Light drag marks were on the floor leading from the hallway to the backdoor.  They stopped at the back door.  With a gloved hand, she opened the back door.  “They go over the threshold.  Why not lift the money and put it wherever you want?”  She looked at her employees.

 

“It’s too heavy,” one of the men said.

 

“Right,” she said.  “It’s heavy.  It’s too heavy.”

 

Teresa took her cell phone from her pocket and pressed an icon.  She then put it to her ear and waited.

 

“Hello,” Helen answered without saying her name.  She was still in Frank Bower’s apartment in Kent, New Jersey.  She still had her gun pointed at him. Her gaze was fixed on him.

 

“We’re here,” Teresa said into the phone.  “We’ve checked out everything.  A perfect situation knocked out all surveillance.  It was not planned.  Luck helped.  Assistant devices did not participate.  A location of the package is more than probable.  No outside damages as of yet.  We need a turn on.”

 

Helen understood what Teresa had just told her.  The cameras and listening devices were knocked out by a massive storm.  The backup generators, for whatever reason, had not kicked on.  The house was without surveillance since the bags were discovered not to have been in their proper places.  Teresa and her team had not killed anyone yet.  Teresa believed they could locate the bags and soon.

 

“Sending you a message now,” Helen said.  Which meant she was turning on the tracking system to locate the bags.  She glanced at her phone and back at Frank.  Frank looked on edge.  “Don’t make me shoot you,” she whispered to Frank.

 

“What?” Teresa asked.  Her eyes were wide.  Her employees stared her.  Teresa heard what Helen had whispered.  “Are you in some kind of trouble?  Do I need to send someone to you?”

 

“No,” Helen said, calmly.  “I’m in the middle of a personal situation.  Something like you were in earlier when I interrupted you.  It’s just a little more intense.”

 

“You,” Teresa said and smiled.  At first Teresa was not sure whether Helen was in trouble or not.  Helen was always calm.  Her tone never gave her away as to how she felt.  Teresa was confident that Helen was alright, wherever she was.

 

“Sending it,” Helen said and pressed an icon on her screen.

 

Teresa looked at her phone.  A red dot was blinking.  Now five red dots were blinking.  Then the five dots came together to make one dot.  The bags were together.

 

“They’re together,” Teresa said.  “Do whatever it is you’re doing.”

 

“I’ll be finished here soon,” Helen said and smiled at Frank.  Frank rolled his eyes.  “I doubt it’ll last an hour.  Keep me posted.”

 

“I will,” Teresa said.  The call ended.

 

Teresa looked at the blinking red dot and pushed an icon on her phone.  A red arrow pointed to her left.  Under the red line that went with the arrow was 25 meters.

 

“I’ll be damn,” Teresa said.  “Dumbass here set this whole thing up.  And I assume his partners or associates decided to take their share and his.  Left his body here to rot.  These are some tough people.”  She pushed a call icon on her phone.  “Come get us.”

 

“Sure thing,” the third man in the SUV said.  He turned on the engine and drove out onto the road.

 

“We’re going down the road a bit to retrieve our things,” she said.  “Actually, we’re going next door to get our stuff back.”  She was pointing toward George and Patti’s house when she spoke.  “Thieving bastards.  We’ll teach them a lesson.”

 

I hope you enjoyed Part 11 of The Drop House.  Patti tried to tell George people would come to look for their things.  But George would not listen.  See if he will listen in the future, if he has a future.

 

Have a great week.  Thank you for stopping by.

 

Stephen Wallace