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Confession Bullshit

There are two kinds of people in the game. 

Those who talk. And those make someone talk.

Confession Bullshit by Jaap Boekestein

You know that bullshit from the movies? One guy takes another guy to a remote spot, pulls out a gun, and makes the other fuck confess he has killed his brother, mother, or poodle. It’s fucking bullshit. You just pull out a gun and waste the other guy. No confession. You know he has done it, only he doesn't know you know.

Of course, you first have to find the fucker. Call me. I will.

Mr. Hanzen called me after someone burgled his home. Got in and took a bunch of stuff that wasn't locked up: some jewelry, the television, that kind of crap. He also wrecked Mr. Hanzen's humidor.

Those cigars were Mr. Hanzen's pride and joy. He had some rare ones. The burglar didn't care, just smashed it open. I reckon it was just plain stupidity.

The police came around, but it amounted to a small heap of nothing. There was no insurance, as usual. People like Mr. Hanzen don't do insurance.

I got a list of the missing stuff with pictures of the jewelry. Lucky me.

Forget the television, laptop, camera, and hardware. You can check every damn pawnshop, and fence, in the city and drown in old tech shit. Nowadays most of it is sold online anyway.

I sent Cassy the pictures of the jewelry and the list of  hardware. She would keep a digital eye out for the goods. I was going to do the old-fashioned walk-and-talk.

Now, ninety percent of the burglars are junkies supporting their habits. The fucker I was looking for was one of them. No professional would have burgled Mr. Hanzen, and a professional would have known the humidor’s worth. So, I had to find me a junkie. A stupid one, which didn't narrow the field down much.

Rocks can end up in a few places in this town, directly or indirectly. Picture this: the junkie sells his shit to his usual fence, who is basically only one grade above cockroach level.

“I got this shit,” the junkie says, showing off the rocks. “I want a million.”

“Hell no. I’ll give you a c-note.”

Haggle, haggle. The junkie takes the money and parts with the goodies. Now, it’s time for a fix.

That fence doesn't move rocks. He does all kind of appliances, but rocks. . . No, that is a specialized market. Like art and guns. But the fence does know someone who does.

As I said, only a few people handle rocks. I know them all, and they know me.

I drive around and do my spiel, mentioning Mr. Hanzen, which sparks their willingness to cooperate. They know Mr. Hanzen. They don't want to cross Mr. Hanzen. Rat out some second-rate dealer? Or make a little profit while having to look over their shoulder the rest of their life? I mention there's a small reward for the right information. It always helps.

This takes me the whole day. I check in with Cassy. No news.

I get a call during dinner. The rocks have shown up with a name.

I set Cassy to collect the rocks.

I pay one Willy Langdon a visit. I don't know Willy Langdon, but we get to know each other. I explain the facts of life. He is a business man, I understand. He has earned his money with the rocks, which is fine by me. I explain I’m not the tax collector, I just need a name. I don't say why. I don't mention Mr. Hanzen's name, but I mention mine. Maybe he wants to check me out with a few of his contacts.

Willy does. Willy looks at me. His contacts know me. Know about me. “What's in it for me?” Willy asks, trying to stay cool. Little beads of sweat gleam on his high forehead.

“My gratitude. And a clean conscience,” I say.

Willy thinks about it. He thinks about what his contacts told him about me.
I get a name.

I pick up the rock with Cassy, drive to Mr. Hanzen, and tell him the story. I tell him I know who robbed him.

Mr. Hanzen nods. 

I get paid by an underling. And...

I ain't saying nothing more, Einstein. Figure it out for yourself. 

I don't do confession bullshit. 

Jaap Boekestein (1968) is an award winning Dutch writer of science fiction, fantasy, horror, thrillers and whatever takes his fancy. He usually writes his stories in trains, coffeehouses and in the 16th century taverns of his native The Hague, the Netherlands. Over the years he has made his living as a bouncer, working for a detective agency and as an editor. Currently he works for the Dutch Ministry of Security and Justice. His English publications include stories in: Cyäegha, Nonbianary Review, Strange Shifters, Lovecraft after Dark, Surreal Nightmares, Urban Temples of Cthulhu, Sirens Call, Mystery Weekly Magazine, Double Feature Magazine, After The Happily Ever After, Cliterature, No Safe Word, Sex & Sorcery 3 and Brave Boy World: A Transman Anthology.