Final Crossing - Sean Rodman - E-Book

Final Crossing E-Book

Sean Rodman

6,49 €


Will and Big O are brothers and best friends—and small-time crooks. Ever since their dad went to prison, they’ve been stealing to survive. On a ferry ride from the big city, they hatch a plan for one more score: they’ll break into the cars on the ferry during the trip and scrape together enough to get out of town. And maybe out of the criminal life forever. But everything goes south when they discover one car that contains more than they bargained for: a young kidnap victim. Pursued by a crazed professional criminal, the brothers must now survive the night and a Final Crossing into a new life.

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Seitenzahl: 73


Final Crossing

Sean Rodman


Copyright © 2014 Sean Rodman

All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording or by any information storage and retrieval system now known or to be invented, without permission in writing from the publisher.

Library and Archives Canada Cataloguing in Publication

Rodman, Sean, 1972-, author Final crossing / Sean Rodman.

(Orca soundings)

Issued in print and electronic formats.ISBN 978-1-4598-0558-3 (bound).--ISBN 978-1-4598-0552-1 (pbk.).- ISBN 978-1-4598-0553-8 (pdf).--ISBN 978-1-4598-0554-5 (epub)

I. Title. II. Series: Orca soundingsPS8635.O355F56 2014             jC813’.6             C2013-906736-1C2013-906737-X

First published in the United States, 2014 Library of Congress Control Number: 2013954151

Summary: Will and Big O are brothers, on the run and trying to stay together. Breaking into cars for small change, they stumble across a kidnap victim and end up in a fight for their lives.

Orca Book Publishers gratefully acknowledges the support for its publishing programs provided by the following agencies: the Government of Canada through the Canada Book Fund and the Canada Council for the Arts, and the Province of British Columbia through the BC Arts Council and the Book Publishing Tax Credit.

Cover image by

In Canada: Orca Book Publishers PO Box 5626, Station B Victoria, BC Canada V8R 6S4

In the United States: Orca Book Publishers PO Box 468 Custer, WA USA 98240-0468

17 16 15 14 • 4 3 2 1

For my sister, who started this journey for me


Chapter One

Chapter Two

Chapter Three

Chapter Four

Chapter Five

Chapter Six

Chapter Seven

Chapter Eight

Chapter Nine

Chapter Ten

Chapter Eleven

Chapter Twelve

Chapter Thirteen

Chapter One

Like most of my brother’s plans, this one is stupid and illegal.

And I’m going through with it. Like I always do.

Big O squints through the rainspattered windshield of our old Ford pickup. Cars are lining up to be fed into the belly of a big ferry that looms in the evening twilight over the dock.

“What I’m saying is, it’s a long ride from here to Seattle. And we could use a little entertainment.” Big O shoves the pickup into gear and nudges it forward.

“You want entertainment, you could read a newspaper,” I say.

Big O shoots me a quick look, like he doesn’t appreciate me being unreasonable.

I shrug. “What? You like the comics, right?”

“You’re supposed to be the smart one. So stay with me here and do the math,” he continues. “There’s what, like, four hundred cars on this ferry. We’ve got two hours. We wait until everybody goes upstairs, leaves their cars behind. Then we take a little walk. Figure out who’s left us a present in their car.” As he speaks, Big O carefully steers us up the loading ramp into the ferry. Following the directions of a guy in a blue uniform with an orange flashlight, he pulls right up to the suv in front of us.

“So nobody’s going to notice us taking their stuff?” I say.

Big O kills the engine. “I’ll stand lookout. You’re awesome at boosting windows and doors.” There he goes, trying to butter me up. “Look, it’s a simple plan. And it doesn’t break any of your rules.”

Being the brains of our operation, I had set a couple of ground rules for our partnership. One, nobody gets hurt. That’s how Dad went down. Two, no drugs. Duh. And three, never steal anything so big that it’ll attract attention. I unbuckle my seat belt so I can swivel on the vinyl seat to face him. My older brother, Big O, is chubby. Not fat but baby-faced, people call it. Although he tends to smack them if they say it to his face. That layer of fat hides some pretty solid muscle. Me, I’m the opposite. Thin. Messy brown hair. Like a ferret with glasses. But we both have the same sneaky blue eyes. A little shifty, like our dad.

“Okay, it’s not the worst plan ever,” I say. It is, in fact, a terrible plan. But I don’t want to hurt his feelings, so I need to break this gently. “There’s a lot of things I like about it.”

O nods enthusiastically, his Oakland A’s ballcap bobbing up and down.

“But here’s a problem,” I continue. “This ferry is basically a giant floating box. If we get caught, and we’re in the middle of the friggin’ ocean, where do we run?”

But O is ready for this one. He smiles serenely, like an evil version of one of those little Buddha statues.

“Will, open your mind to the possibilities.” Big O reaches over, puts one arm on my shoulder and, with the other, gestures to the rows and rows of cars now parked in front of us. Like a herd of cows, people are already leaving their cars behind and heading for the stairs to the upper deck.

“Where do we run? That’s only a problem,” drawls O, “if we get caught. So let’s not do that this time, all right?”

I rub my face, thinking it through. The real problem, when you get right down to it, is money. Even if we sleep in the truck, we’ll need some money for food and gas.

“How much cash have you got left?” I ask O.

He pulls out a brown leather wallet, white and worn on the edges. He opens it up wide to show me a couple of quarters. I snort. I have a few bucks. Maybe enough for a coffee or two. Everything else, we blew on the ferry ticket.

Maybe Big O is right. If we’re careful, maybe his plan will work.

“Okay,” I say. “Let’s do it.”

Big O shakes both fists in the air like he’s just scored a touchdown. “That’s one for me!”

“But,” I continue, “I’m adding a couple more rules.”

“Seriously, man?” Big O says, fists dropping to his sides. “You are the most uptight criminal. Ever.”

“We do this, it’s by my rules,” I say, crossing my arms. “Take it or leave it.”

Big O heaves a sigh, like this is killing him. “Fine, whatever. What are the rules?”

“First, we’re going to take cash only. We look for jackets, purses, whatever. We don’t take anything we have to sell.”

Big O nods reasonably.

“Second, I figure we need about a hundred bucks to get us to Uncle Steve’s. So once we get that much, we stop.”

Now O looks less certain. He shifts his big frame in the driver’s seat.

“What if it’s something really nice?” he says.

“Like what?” I ask.

“Like…like a gold ring.”

“What are you,” I say, ”a pirate? Why would someone leave a gold ring in their car? You’re an idiot.”

Big O punches my arm. “No, you’re the idiot,” he mutters. “You’d leave a perfectly good gold ring behind.”

“Moving on,” I say loudly, “third and final rule. You’re the lookout, so I’m the only one going into the car. You keep your eyes up at all times. If there’s any chance of us being seen, we don’t do it. And if something goes wrong, if we get split up, then we meet—I dunno, at the cafeteria.”

Big O fiddles with the gearshift for a moment, thinking it through. Then he holds out his hand for a high five. I slap it.

“Y’know, we make a great team. Like Ben and Jerry,” Big O says as he opens his door. “Or wait—Bert and Ernie? Which ones are the puppets?”

I rub my face again. This is going to be a long night.

Chapter Two

The two of us are walking a couple of cars apart, trying to look casual. I can feel the rumbling of the ferry’s engines through the deck as it makes its way out of the port. Pretty much everyone has cleared out of the car deck now, drawn to the upper deck by the lure of fried food in the cafeteria. There are still a few people sleeping in their cars, which makes me nervous. We continue to walk forward, scanning left and right. Big O is looking for trouble while I’m looking for targets.

I think the key to being a successful small-time crook is setting out some rules for yourself. I’m a rules guy. Which seems a little ironic given my current occupation, which involves breaking a lot of rules.