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“Ah, looks like you’ve figured it out, son, haven’t you?”
Alexander took a step closer, trying to keep his composure as Olivia looked up at him, bound and gagged.
Jack closed the distance between himself and Olivia, pressing his gun against her temple, daring Alexander to come any closer. “Drop your weapons or I will fucking kill her, daughter or not,” he growled. “NOW!”
Alexander immediately stopped dead in his tracks, adrenaline coursing through his veins. He turned to Martin and nodded. Slowly, they both lowered their guns to the ground, keeping their eyes trained on Jack.
“Kick them over here.”
They followed his direction, holding their hands up in surrender. Alexander had been in tighter spots before, but never did he have to fight for the life of a loved one. He couldn’t afford to fuck up. “How could you?” he asked quietly. “Your own daughter, Jack. How could you?”
“I don’t have a fucking choice in the matter, son…”
“Stop!” Alexander said, raising his voice. “Do not call me son! You’ve lost that privilege.”
Jack’s face softened. “You need to understand.”
“Understand?!” Alexander shouted, indignant. “You’re holding a gun to your daughter’s head! She’s been beaten, shot, and assaulted. Repeatedly!” he cried out, barely holding it together. “What can you possibly say that will help me understand?”
“I fucked up, okay?!” Jack yelled. “But these people were not to be messed with! I’ve seen what they do if you cross them or don’t follow their instructions. Not the way I want to go.”
“So it was you.”
“Of course. I was the brains behind the whole fucking thing,” he responded, almost sounding offended that Alexander would question his ability to pull off an operation like that. “I was able to employ the help of some other people in the CIA, the FBI, the military. No one knew about anyone else who was involved, except for Kiddish, senior. We were the only ones who knew where all the bodies were buried, so to speak. I didn’t want to enlist his help, but I needed someone to keep all the other players in line.”
“I don’t understand,” Alexander said. “Why were those documents at your house to begin with? For anyone to find? Not very smart, Jack.” He wanted him to keep talking.
“I couldn’t keep that shit at the office, now could I? Someone would eventually catch on. Never did I think that someone at home would. So she had to be dealt with.” A twisted look came across Jack’s face of part remorse and part satisfaction.
“No,” Alexander said quietly. “Marilyn…” He looked to Olivia, tears streaming down her face. “You killed your own wife?” he asked, unable to comprehend that the monster standing in front of him was the same man he used to build sand castles with when he was younger.
“I HAD TO! SHE KNEW TOO FUCKING MUCH!” Jack took a deep breath. “She was smarter than I gave her credit for. She was onto me. She found all the documents that we had fixed. The money transfers were there. It was all there. I was careless enough to leave it out one day. I had to lie and say that it was a case I was working on. She believed me at first, but then she started to question things. I guess the money made her suspicious. I should have been smarter about hiding the extra cash coming in.
“I made up a story about some of the people I was ‘investigating’ catching on to me. I had hoped to scare her off so she would stop asking questions about the details of what was going on. It worked…a little too well. Marilyn went to your father, giving him the story that I fed her before she knew of my involvement. Soon, she started digging through all my stuff and, eventually, put it all together. She knew too much. I had no choice.”
“So you killed her.”
“You know the answer to that.”
“But the accident…”
“Well, I guess I might as well tell you everything. None of you will be walking out of this house alive.” Jack shrugged, amused, almost as if he was proud of himself for what was going on. “Marilyn was dead before I even placed her in the car. I went to Kiddish, senior, to see how he thought we should deal with the potential leak. The only way was to dispose of Marilyn…and Olivia. Then I could search for the missing documents as I grieved for my deceased family. Marilyn should have kept her mouth shut. When I saw her attempting to flee with Livvy, I had to kill her. I was hoping to wait and kill her in the crash, but she was putting up a fight. I knew I was taking a risk with the car accident, as I could possibly die, too, but Kiddish said the best way would be to make it all seem natural so as to not raise suspicion. He was in on the plan. What he wasn’t in on was me having to shoot him, but I wasn’t expecting you and your father to show up after the crash. I had to sell it, and the only way was to kill him.”
“I don’t understand. Why the new identities?” Alexander asked, wanting all the information possible. He wasn’t going to give up without a fight.
“It was a way to cover my involvement. Your father was helping watch out for us…at Marilyn’s request. Little did I realize that she called your dad just a few hours before I got home that day, saying she was scared about something. That just shows you what your dad was like. He would drop everything to help out a friend. When you and your father stumbled across the accident, it was the perfect set-up to try and start over again. If everyone thought I died, no one would mention my involvement if there was ever a leak, which was doubtful considering I held all the documentation and the only other person who knew everything was now dead. A new identity would give me plenty of time and space to hunt for the documents, but I didn’t know what Olivia would remember. Imagine my luck when the doctor explained that she suffered a rather severe brain injury and would probably have substantial memory loss.