I don’t think I had ever felt so intimidated in my entire life – I felt like I was going to piss myself. Which, might I add, I hadn’t done since I was five years old.
“Is this the car?” The guy, who I now noticed had a scar running down the left side of his neck – stretching from his ear to just below the jaw – spoke to me gruffly. I really hoped I wasn’t visibly trembling.
“Yeah, the meth is just in the trunk.” I subconsciously fingered my pearl necklace beneath the thick hoodie as we strolled over to Stephen’s truck.
I was having second thoughts about volunteering to make the deal. I literally didn’t have a clue what I was doing when I told Lizzie the exchange would be simple and I was terrified I was going to mess up. Being ridiculed by the clients was bad enough, messing up the deal would seal the wax on the envelope.
I glanced back, hoping to get some form of encouragement or reassurance from Lizzie; no luck, her petite figure was obscured by that of the hulking gang men, all whose presence was the furthest from calming I could imagine.
We reached the car, just out of earshot of the group, and I popped the trunk silently, the thin slither of snow collected on the rear window slided off as I did so.
“And here….” I began, but rapidly faded out. I couldn’t help my sudden impendance of speech; I had been expecting around a dozen bags worth – a lot in itself – but in Stephen’s truck boot there lay just over ten family sized suitcases. To random passersby it may have appeared we ran an airport luggage transportation business – not likely, but that was obviously Lizzie’s cover story. I knew better though; these suitcases were filled to the brim with meth.
The scarred man ignored my floundering and reached forward, grabbing the nearest black case and unzipping it as he did so, like he had been in this situation a thousand times before – which I’m sure he had.
As he flipped the lid I struggled to hold back my gasp. There in the case was sandwich bag upon sandwich bag of blue crystal that glared under the snow’s reflection, making it appear like shattered glass. Meth ruined people’s lives and was a completely devastating drug, but its appearance certainly was fascinating – more to the fact it looked like glass than anything else.
“Perfect, what a beauty,” the man grumbled as he picked out a bag and held it up in front of his face. “This man makes good meth.”
I nodded and stomped my frozen feet forcefully – I just wanted this whole exchange to be over.
“Here’s the twenty thousand.” The man didn’t look at me again as he closed the bag back up and pulled the money from his suit’s inside pocket. I barely had time to take the money before two other men were surrounding me and reaching in for the product.
“Oh, yeah, sure,” I muttered awakwardly and stood to the side as the trio unlocked one of their Mercedez and started transitioning the loot from our car to theirs – the men’s orderly fashion in doing so was therapeutic to watch and I caught myself zoning out as they went about their job.
No, Erin. Stay attentive, I need to watch them.
“All those cases?” I asked, needing a confirmation, when I noticed the men were finishing up.
“All twelve,” the scarred man replied, but I couldn’t tell if he was looking me in the eye for his blackened sunglasses.
I had no reason not to believe them. If Lizzie was dealing with them I expected them to be worth my trust. So I nodded once more again the man thanked me for my business.
“Thanks for doing business with us,” was all I could say before he and his friends glided into their car and started backing away.
As soon as the car shifted the rest of the gang seemed to respond like pre-ordered computers and all strode off to their serperate cars. The man in the pink suit, however, stayed behind a few moments longer, talking to Lizzie. As I tentatively approached and he noticed me he glanced at Lizzie and flashed me a knowing smile, before stubbing out a mostly unsmoked cigarette.
“Well, good deal again, Lizzie.” I didn’t realise those two knew each other. “Tell Trevor I asked for him – and.. give him my thanks.” The two shook hands and he turned to me. “Welcome to the business.” A single handshake; a disorientated response from me and the man was gone. Off in his own slightly superior Mercedez, with only a graveyeard of cigarette butts to signify his presence.