Alek tilted his head to the side to let his eyes rest. He looked around the balcony of the rundown apartment. He noted how the back of his neck ached from the strain. It seemed like everything hurt on him these days. Just like Kara predicted, he was starting to burnout.
Alek's lifestyle was finally catching up to him. He was always the first to volunteer for a new job and the last to wrap up before it closed.
Everyone who knew him always said he worked like a machine. He agreed with them. He hated idleness, that type of activity invited reflection, and he had no desire to reflect on his mess of a life.
He looked back through the scope when he noticed movement in the apartment across from him. The man he was watching was yelling at someone on the phone, hopefully, his target.
Alek was ready to get back to Scotland and have some home-cooked meals. He smiled; he was getting old. He'd spent too many days like this, sitting alone in an abandoned building waiting on his target to appear.
Today, his target was a trafficker, known for selling Bulgarian children to anyone with enough cash. Unfortunately, the man in question was related to one of the top political figures in the country, and bringing him in was nearly impossible.
That's where Alek came in. His team had been hired by his government to eliminate the coward. Alek had no problem with that task. His hard life had exposed the many loopholes the law had in place for the upper class. Alek's target had made millions from his business, and he wasn't going to give it up easily.
But none of that mattered to Alek. He had a job to do, and he intended to finish it. Nate wanted him to take a break after this one. Everyone seemed to be worried about the amount of time he was putting in at the office. They just didn't understand his need to stay busy.
Alek froze when the guy he was watching picked up his gun and opened the door. The guy moved back, and another person walked in—a man with a scar running from his ear to the bottom of his chin.
Finally… This was what Alek lived for. He loved the hunt, but nothing was better than getting his target, especially when you knew what your target was capable of. Alek had read through Raul's file.
Raul Costa was a perverted monster with a penchant for torture. A man like was a parasite to society, and he wouldn't be missed. Alek took a second to test the wind; everything was just right.
Alek allowed his frame to relax as he tilted his head to the left and exhaled. The bullet left his gun and entered through the shoulder of the man he was watching and exited from Raul's chest. Both men hit the ground, and Alek rolled over to his side.
It took him precisely one minute to gather his supplies and exit the building. He was careful with his movements; he didn't want to set off any of the traps he'd set earlier. He moved quickly from his building to theirs.
By the time Alek got to his front door, he could hear yelling inside. Alek opened the door and immediately shot the guy yelling on the floor. He walked further inside and was surprised to find his target still breathing. This burnout shit was real; he was losing his touch.
He looked down at Raul. The expensive Armani suit didn't stand a chance against the crimson blood that pooled around him. Alek pulled out a small tablet and took his target's finger, and placed it on it.
It was a match; he sent his confirmation back to Nate. He would contact the client and get paid for the job.
"Do you know who I am?" Raul whispered. He struggled to get the words out as his hands tried frantically to stop the bleeding.
"Of course, I do," Alek said. He checked his target's pockets and collected the contents. He frowned as the pungent scent of the room hit his nose. He hated this smell, gunpowder, and death.
"Then you know my people will come after you."
Alek smiled; Raul really had no idea how wrong he was. "I know you assume your people will come after me. But I think you underestimate their hatred of you. You won't be missed, and you won't be avenged. Let that be your last thought before you descend into hell."
Raul chuckled, and the movement drained the last of his strength. "You think you're better than me."
"No, I have no doubt I'll join you there soon but for now…" Alek pulled out his gun and pointed it at his head. "I'll keep doing what I'm good at."
Raul opened his mouth, and he fired. He didn't bother to hide the bodies during his cleanup. The police would handle the rest. After all, their people had hired them.
Alek focused on removing any evidence he was there. He left the two bodies and started his journey back to his car. He'd parked a few blocks down from the drop house.
As he walked, he thought back over the last decade of his life. He was good at killing. He'd found that out in the military. After that, he'd honed his skill as a contractor for his government.
Killing was like riding a bike for him, and that numbness was starting to become worrisome. Alek had never imagined this life for himself. As a kid, he'd wanted to be a vet. He'd always loved animals, but even at a young age, he'd known that option wasn't meant for people like him.
Education cost money, and money came from family. Alek had been alone all of his life. He'd known from age ten he had one path in front of him to ensure some security. He'd joined the Swedish Armed Forces and dedicated his life to building his career there. That dedication had created a level of skill that his government enjoyed exploiting. He hadn't stood a chance of being normal.