Excerpt from: “Flight of the Angel and the Return of the Bolshevik”

The sun glints off the barn roof in the fading afternoon light. It is a wintery day, cold and brisk. Inside the barn we can hear some unfriendly comments coming from Chappy Carson as he tries to settle a thrashing Stallion that has managed to kick his trough into pieces sending dangerous splinters into the neighboring stalls.
“God damn you Diablo…you son of an Indian Paint son of a bitch…I should have sent you packing with the rest of the bunch I sold to that dumb ass horse trader from New Mexico….”
His dog Burl squirrels out of sight for he knows how his Master can vent …sometimes offering an unfriendly kick in his direction. Chappy’s cell phone rings. He ignores it, then pulls it from his leather jacket hip pocket and checks the caller. It is the CIA calling…it is Chip Davis. He gets part of Chappy’s vent as well.
“You picked a bad time to call a rowdy horse wrangler…I’m about ready to make Mustang Stew.”
Chip ducks that one.
“You following the press in Russia?”
Chip slams the gate shut and moves toward the barn door.
“Let me call you back in five Chip.”
He pockets the phone and heads out of the barn. A gust of wind catches the door and it goes wide. Burl scurries out into the night. Chappy wields the door against the wind and latches it tight. Ducking his head into the wind he heads for the house a half a hundred yards into the darkness.
Reaching the house, Chappy moves toward the metal kick plate to scrape his boots from any residual horseshit from his ordeal, lifts the latch and opens the door. Burl lunges in between movements to avoid being left to the night in the doghouse. He hangs his coat and sails his stetson onto a rack and makes his way to the bar. He pulls a tumbler from the rack and uncorks a bottle of Johnny Walker Black Label and pours three fingers, then makes his way toward his desk. Realizing his phone is still in his jacket he retrieves it and settles into a comfortable chair at his desk. He pulls a drawer open and props his boots on it and captures his thoughts for the phone call to Chip. He sips from the tumbler…thinking…the Crimean. Kozmotyn was pretty slick the way he financed the invasion of the Crimean Peninsula with unfinished hotels and sporting arenas from the Olympic games budget. He presses a code on his phone and it bleeps out the secure number to the Number Two guy at the CIA….Chip Davis.
“Done shoveling horseshit partner?” Chip chuckles.
Chappy takes it in stride.
“It is safer to shoveling horseshit than stepping in bullshit every time you leave your little office there Chip.”
Chip laughs at this comment.
“Well you know we are in one hell of a dilemma in the Baltic.”


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