From last time ...
The waitress walked up with Mackey's coffee.
"You need cream and sugar, Sugar?"
"No. Black is fine. You guys got any 'Shit on a Shingle'?"
And now ...
"Sure, Sugar, right away."
The waitress walked away, toward the opening behind the counter, to give the order to the cook.
"So. Who's your first target?"
Sarah searched through the sheets of paper for one of the sheets she had seen.
"This guy. Hererra. Apparently he has taken over for Sully and Chico. He seems like a real hardass, from what I see in these pages here. I suppose any one of them would do just fine, but he kinda sticks in my mind."
"That's fine, Sarah. All you have to do is pick one. Next year, though, take out one of the lower ranking guys, and not a Mexican, either."
"We don't want them to see the pattern too clearly, too soon. They'll scatter, otherwise."
"I'm not sure I see you're point."
"It's like sniping an enemy patrol. You take out the last man first, and keep working from back to front. If you take down the man in front, everybody sees it and they all get down and under cover. If you take out tail-end-charlie, nobody realizes what's up until it's too late."
"I see. If we keep takin' out the top guy, everybody pays attention to that and they rabbit. Take out the little guys and they may not understand what's happening until it's too late. Very nice. One thing, though. There is one person that's going to know what's going on. Giamatti. I'm going to send him one of those blanks that Jake made for him every time I take out one of his guys."
"Do yo think that's wise?"
"I don't care if it's wise or not, Mackey. I want him to know. I want him to sweat. I want him to wonder who I am, and when I'm coming for him."
"He doesn't know who you are?"
"No, he doesn't. Any possibility of him or his men being able to identify me died with Chico and Sully. He doesn't even know I'm alive. The only people around here that can connect me with Jake are Ma and Two Feathers, and I don't think either one of them would rat me out to Giamatti, so I'm safe. I intend to stay that way."
The waitress walked up with Mackey's plate of Creamed Chipped Beef on Toast and sat it on the table on front of him.
"More coffee, Sugar?"
"Yes, thank you. Man, I haven't had a good plate of this stuff since we got off the ship comin' home from Saipan."
"Can I get you anything else?"
"Nope. I got everything I need right here. But thank you, for asking."
Sarah reached into her handbag and pulled out a blank and sat it on the table between them.
"Well, if you're gonna do that, let's do it right. We'll get some paint and we'll paint their names on the blanks, put 'em in a box, and send them to Giamatti."
"Not until after we get Hererra. I don't want him ducking for cover."
"Right. Now. Where's all this inventory Jake set out for you?"
"In Ma's attic. When you finish eatin' that slop, we'll go up and take a look."
"Slop? Honey, put a little pepper in this, and there ain't a finer breakfast anywhere - and this, by the way, is some of the best I've ever had. Where'd this guy learn to cook?"
"That's a long story, Sergeant Mackey. But I think I'll let Ma tell you when she comes back."