ATF Alternate Universe
The crack ATF team sat in the hotel suite listening to their leader explain what was going on with their most recent case. The case dealt with a wealthy arms dealer that wanted to get into drug deals to expand his business. Ezra had been undercover for three weeks getting himself established as the advance man for one of the local drug cartels. It was decided that Buck would be the Boss of the cartel and Vin would go in as his bodyguard. Ezra had been explaining what he had been up to for the passed three weeks.
"So gentlemen" Ezra said. "Frederick Stanton has agreed to meet with Mr. Anthony Sipriani."
"Hey Buck," cried JD. "Do I get to call you Tony?"
"Over my dead body" growled Buck.
"So Ezra, what name did you give Vin?" asked Josiah.
"I can live with that," smiled Vin.
"Ezra did you get their new wardrobe?' asked a smiling Chris.
"What do you mean new wardrobe?" asked Vin. "I'm just a body guard. Can't I go like I usually do?"
"Certainly not," said Ezra. "You are supposed to be a member of a big time drug cartel. You can't very well wear jeans." Ezra went to the closet and started pulling out bags with various designer names on them.
"Ezra!" said an alarmed Chris. "You did stay within budget?"
"Why of course, Mr. Larabee." he said. "I do believe you will like the choices."
Ezra began pulling out purchases and arranging them on the sofa. There was more silk lying around then the agents had ever seen in one place. Vin picked up a dark purple shirt like it was going to bite him.
"You've got to be kidding," he complained. "I wouldn't be caught dead in purple."
"Trust me, Mr. Tanner," began Ezra. "It goes wonderful with this dark gray Armani suit."
"Just try it," suggested Chris.
They took the clothes and went into the bedrooms to change. Ezra outlined what he had arraigned for the meeting. It was to be at Duo's, one of the more expensive restaurants in town, tonight.
"I take it Buck, I mean Anthony's, buying?" asked Nathan.
"Of course," Ezra grinned.
Just then Vin came out dressed in the dark gray suit. Ezra was right the shirt went perfect with the single-breasted suit. Chris was impressed. He'd never seen Vin dressed in anything but jeans, shirt and boots. Ezra went over and began adjusting the sleeves and the shoulders. Vin gave Chris the get him off me look and he decided to step in.
"Ezra why don't you go check on Buck," Chris suggested.
Ezra disappeared into the bedroom, while Vin joined the others. Josiah complimented the younger agent and he smiled. Chris looked him over and noticed he still had on his worn cowboy boots.
"Ah Vin," said Chris indicating the boots.
"Oh come one Chris," he pleaded. "I feel naked as it is. Can't I keep them?"
"They don't go," said JD.
"Those shoes he got are like slippers," he protested.
"Just go get them," said Chris as he tried not to laugh at Vin's expression.
Vin reluctantly went to the room. While he was inside Ezra and Buck emerged from the other room. Buck was dressed in a black Broni double-breasted suit. The shirt was a dove gray silk with a matching handkerchief in the breast pocket. Chris noticed that Buck had put on the shoes and could see why Vin was reluctant to wear them. They looked to be some expensive leather. Buck's had small tassels on the front. Ezra had also changed into an immaculate pale gray Versace suit with a cream colored silk shirt.
"So what do you think?" asked Buck.
"Very impressive Buck," said Nathan.
"Yeah, you look good enough to be buried," laughed JD.
"Why you," growled Buck as he lunged for the kid.
"Please!" cried Ezra, "That's a $2,000 suit."
"What!" bellowed Chris.
"I assure you I got a good deal," replied Ezra.
"Never mind," he said, "I don't want to know." Vin came out of the room and joined the others. Chris could see he was not happy.
"So where I am I supposed to hide a weapon in this monkey suit?" he asked.
"Well, Mr.Tanner, since you are the body guard, you have no need to hide anything," Ezra answered.
"Good!" he declared.
The others watched as Vin retrieved a black bag from the closet. He came over and sat by the table and began to spread out his weapons. Chris just shook his head as Vin laid out his small arsenal. He preferred more firepower than the others did. First out was his 357 Magnum. He checked the rounds then clipped it to the belt at the small of his back and added a speed loader to either side. Next was his Sig Sauer automatic. Vin hit the release button that dropped the cartridge. He checked to see that it was loaded then snapped it back into place. He then loaded a round in the chamber. This he hooked on his right hip along with two speed loaders. He was about to strap on his ankle holster when Ezra spoke up.
"Mr. Tanner, might I suggest a more elegant..." he never finished the sentence.
"I like my own weapons," Vin growled.
They were all used to this ritual but it always fascinated JD. He watched Vin strap on his ankle holster and check his snubbed nosed .38 special. When he was satisfied with it he placed it in the holster. Vin took off the jacket and rolled up the sleeves of his silk shirt causing Ezra to cringe. Vin just smiled and strapped to each wrist a throwing knife. He had tried to show the others but none of them could figure them out, except Nathan who now sported his own pair. When he was done he rolled down the sleeves put on the jacket and stood up.
"Fell less naked, brother?" asked Josiah.
"Oh yeah," smiled Vin as he slipped on is black sunglasses.
"Damn," JD laughed. "I wouldn't have guessed you had any weapons on if I didn't just watch you."
"What times dinner?" asked Chris.
"In two hours, at seven o'clock," answered Ezra.
"Good that will give the rest of us time to set up," said Chris. "Let's go."
+ + + + + + +
Duo's Restaurant seven o'clock
Josiah patiently watched the parking lot of Duo's from the surveillance van. They were parked a block away. The truck was a city water truck. They had parked next to a manhole cover and placed out cones making it look like they were fixing something. JD was beside him watching also.
"Here they come," he said
Chris grabbed a pair of the night vision binoculars and watched as Ezra's Jaguar pulled up. Vin was the first one out and looked around. Chris noticed he had slicked back his hair and had it in a ponytail. The valet approached the car and Vin stopped him with a glare. The young man stopped in his tracks, unsure what to do. Vin then leaned down and opened the door. He stood guarding Buck as he emerged from the car. Ezra also exited and handed the keys to the valet. Chris assumed he handed him a big tip also because the kid smiled. Ezra and Buck walked trough the front door followed by Vin. Who took one last look around.
"Damn," laughed Josiah. "Vin certainly got into his part."
"I sure wouldn't mess with him," said JD.
"I'm sure one of the goons inside will," predicted Chris.
"Well we won't know until we meet them later," pointed out Nathan.
"Why aren't they wearing a wire?" asked JD.
"It's Anthony's first meet," explained Chris. "I'm sure they'll check to see if they're wired."
"Well all we can do now is wait," said Nathan as he got comfortable.
+ + + + + + +
"Ah Mr. Stephens," said Stanton as he saw Ezra. "I was afraid you weren't coming."
"Now would I back out on such a lucrative investment?" asked Ezra. "May I introduce Mr. Sipriani, Anthony Sipriani.
"Pleased to meet you," said Stanton as he reached to shake Buck's hand. He was stopped when a hand gripping his wrist.
"It's OK Vincent," he said as he patted Vin's shoulder. "Everything's fine. Please forgive Vincent. He's sometimes over protective."
"That's alright," said Stanton. "But I do have a request. Some of my guests tonight are a little nervous and I told them I would check you for a wire."
"Why Frank," began Ezra. "I'm truly hurt. Don't you trust me?"
"Of course I do. It's just business."
He pulled out a small black box and turned it on. The light stayed red as he swept it over the three agents indicating there was no wire.
"Right this way gentlemen," he said with a smile.
He walked away and Buck shot Ezra a look and mouthed guests, Ezra shrugged and followed. Stanton brought them to a private room. Sitting inside were two people the agents recognized and two they didn't.
"May I introduce Tommy Hong and Enrique Manolo," he said. "Two of my biggest suppliers. They can secure the weapons easier from over seas."
"Mr. Hong's reputation precedes him," smiled Ezra. "May I introduce my boss Anthony Sipriani and his body guard. Vincent Corlia."
"That skinny fancy pants is a body guard?" asked the young man with Enrique.
"Gentlemen, my cousin Mano."
"A pleasure," said Buck as he and Ezra took seats. Vin stood behind them watching.
"I bet I could take you," boasted Mano as he walked over to face Vin.
"You could try," Vin suggested.
He took a few fake swings at Vin. He ignored him, which only made the kid mad, and he pulled a knife. Vin lashed out lightning quick and jabbed the kid in the throat dropping him to the ground. The kid went down gagging as Vin walked over and took his knife.
"Don't pull this on me unless you plan to use it," advised Vin in a deadly voice. He placed the knife along the kid's jugular and watched as the kid's eyes went wide.
"Vin!" called Buck.
He backed away and let the kid rise and handed him back the knife hilt first. He took it and was about to strike when Enrique reprimanded him in Spanish. The kid sat back down glaring at Vin.
"Forgive my cousin," he said. "He's young."
"No problem," said Buck.
Vin looked around the room for possible trouble. He could see the kid was fuming but wouldn't do anything while his cousin was there. Vin dismissed him and turned to Tommy Hong. The ATF had been after him for awhile but could never catch him. Vin looked at Tommy and met the eyes of his bodyguard Shiko Matsimoto. Shiko looked Vin in the eyes and made a slight bow. Vin returned the bow of an equal. They now understood each other. Shiko gave Mano a disgusted look and Vin smiled. For the next two hours plans were made to meet at Stanton's home in the mountains to exchange "gifts". Stanton said there was no way to bring all the guns to his house. Other arrangements would have to be made to pick up the bulk of the shipment. Anthony agreed as long as some of the assault rifles were on hand for inspection.
+ + + + + + +
"Damn!" swore Josiah. "Chris is that who I think it is?"
Chris grabbed the binoculars and looked out the window. They had just exited the restaurant and Buck was shaking hands with Stanton. He then turned to shake hands with a Hispanic man that Chris didn't recognize. Standing with him was a younger man that walked up to Vin and got in his face. Vin ignored him, which only seemed to enrage him more and that's when the older man pulled him away. Next Buck turned to the man Chris did recognize and shook his hand. Standing next to the Japanese gentlemen was a companion that Chris guessed was his bodyguard. He turned to Vin and they bowed to each other.
"Damn, is right"
"Who was he?" asked JD after he lowered the binoculars.
"Tommy Hong" answered Josiah.
"What the hell have we stumbled into?" asked Nathan.
"I don't know but we're going to need backup on this one," said Chris. "JD, Nathan lets pack things up and get out of here."
+ + + + + + +
After they had said their good byes the valet pulled up with the jaguar. He handed the keys to Ezra who gave him a tip.
"Mr. Carlia why don't you drive," said Ezra as he tossed Vin the keys.
"Drink too much, Ez?" said Vin with a smile as he opened the doors.
They climbed into the car and Vin pulled out. Ezra opened his briefcase and pulled out a small black box. He switched it on the light turned green. Ezra just shook his head. They had placed a bug in his car. Buck saw the light and laughed.
"Ezra you sure no how to pick good restaurants," sighed Buck in satisfaction.
"I'm glad you enjoyed it Boss," growled Vin. "I'm starved."
"When we get back to the hotel you can order room service," suggested Ezra.
"So Ezra we have enough merchandise to cover the deal?" Buck asked.
"Why of course," chuckled Ezra.
Vin checked the rear view mirror and noticed someone following them. He signaled Ezra who nonchalantly looked in the mirror pretending to fix his tie. He nodded at Vin who smiled back. He stepped on the gas and took off. The other car kept pace until Vin made a quick left turn and slammed on the excelerator leaving the other car behind. They made their way back to the hotel. The others were waiting for them when they got back.
"I can't believe they bugged my car!" cried an indignant Ezra.
"What did you expect?" asked Vin
"Professional courtsey," he suggested.
"They're criminals Ezra," said Nathan.
"What I want to know is, what the hell was Tommy Hong doing there!" demanded Chris.
"Rest assured I was just as surprised as you," said Ezra.
"What do we do now Chris?" asked Buck.
"We certainly can't back out now," said JD. "Just think of the commendations we'd get if we bagged Hong."
On the ride back JD had checked up on Tommy Hong. He was on the top 10 list of the most wanted arms dealers the agency had put out. He had been caught a few times but they had to let him go for lack of evidence.
"There's one big thing you're forgetting, kid," said Buck.
"We could end up dead."
"Vin who's his body guard?" asked Nathan. "You seemed to recognize him and we couldn't find anything on him."
"Shiko Matsimoto," replied Vin.
"Gesundheit" said Ezra.
"He's a black belt in jujitsu and a 5th degree black belt in Akido," he continued. "He's signature way of killing people is by breaking their necks."
"But you could take him." JD said with confidence.
"I'm good, he's better," stated Vin.
"So what do we do?" asked Josiah.
"We go on as planned," said Chris. "And we call in back up. Agreed?"
They all nodded and got down to planning the take down at Stanton's home.
+ + + + + + +
Grandview Hotel five day later
Chris watched as Josiah fixed Vin with a mike. The device was extremely small and was actually one of the buttons on his suit. This time Vin was dressed in a pale gray silk suit with a pale pink silk shirt. Getting Vin into the pink shirt had been a challenge. Finally Chris had to warn the others to quit teasing him. When Vin had finally come out of the bedroom the others had been surprised. The colors complimented the tanned agent. Ezra had just given them all a smug smile. Buck was messing with his suit when Nathan reprimanded him.
"Leave the button be," he scolded.
"Are you sure these doohickeys will work?" asked Buck.
"Yeah they're working," said JD as he took off the headphones. "Ezra say something so I can adjust the volume on yours."
"Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation," he recited.
"OK, great," said JD. "What were you quoting?"
"The gaps in your education astound me," replied Ezra.
"It was the Gettysburgh Address, son," answered Josiah after seeing JD's hurt look.
"Don't worry JD," Vin winked, "I didn't know what it was neither. Not something you need to collar a perp."
"I'm working with Neanderthals," sighed Ezra.
Chris watched as JD looked at Vin. He just shrugged and continued to check his guns. Chris was the only one who knew Vin had barely finished High School. It didn't seem to bother Vin that the others were smarter then he was he. Chris knew that he had confidence in himself and that was all that mattered. Vin had finished strapping on his guns and watched as Ezra and Buck put on theirs. Vin always had extra energy before a bust and Chris watched as he paced the room. JD was double-checking the mikes with Josiah's help. Nathan was packing up their black ATF windbreakers while Buck and Ezra relaxed on the couch. Chris checked his watch and it read five o'clock, three more hours to go. The phone rang and Chris answered it.
"Larabee......right.....No!.....got it, bye"
"Ok the others teams are in place. There are two others each consisting of seven men. Team 2 is set up as a phone repair on the far side of the street. Team 3 are contractors working on the house next door. We'll be right out front as city electrical repair working out of a manhole right at the end of the driveway. The other teams will go on my signal. We have medics standing by just incase. Nathan, JD, Josiah everything set?"
"All set Chris," said JD. "I can hear everyone loud and clear."
"Tapes good to go," said Josiah.
"Equipment's all packed," confirmed Nathan. "Just have to load it in the truck.
The four agents were dressed in Navy overalls that had Denver City Electric stenciled on the back. They were armed also and Chris gave everyone a nod.
"Let's ride," he said. "We'll see you three later."
+ + + + + + +
Stanton's House 8 PM
Vin drove the jaguar passed the electric company van and turned into the driveway. The house was on a small hill with a circular drive. He drove up to the front door and parked. Vin noticed a few other cars in the driveway but thought nothing of it. The house was a contemporary. It was all angles and windows. Vin walked around to the passenger side and opened the doors. Ezra climbed out and went over to Buck who handed him a silver case. Buck climbed out carrying a matching one. They all moved to the door.
+ + + + + + +
Chris watched as his three agents were led into the house and out of his sight. Once they were inside JD pulled the headphones off and cringed.
"Damn!" he said, "They're having some kind of party."
"What!" exclaimed Chris as he picked up the headphones.
~"Ah Mr. Sipriani how nice to see you"~
Chris could barely make out what Stanton was saying over the music.
~"Whats' going on Mr. Stanton?" asked Ezra.~
~"Just a small party," he answered. "Please come in, but first, your weapons."~
~"What!" demanded Vin.~
JD looked at Chris in surprise. They hadn't anticipated this. Chris cursed softly and listened.
~"Please Mr. Corlia. It's for the safety of my guests."~
Chris knew they had no choice and he listened as they handed over their weapons. He slammed his fist down on the table. Three of his agents were now unarmed.
"Chris what's going on?" asked a concerned Nathan.
"Stanton just stripped them of their weapons."
"Shit!" cursed Josiah.
+ + + + + + +
Vin looked at Buck who nodded. Hell what choice did they have? He let Stanton's man pat him down and remove his weapons.
"Why Mr. Corlia one would think you didn't trust me," said Stanton indicating the three guns and the two knives.
"You can never be too careful"
"Mr. Stanton," interrupted Ezra. "I'm afraid we can't stay long. We have another engagement."
"Nonsense, you'll just have to cancel."
Stanton showed them around the house and introduced them to his guests. Tommy and Enrique were both there. Shiko and Tommy didn't look too happy about the party either. Vin nodded to them and looked around. The house was very impressive. Expensive paintings lined the walls. Sumptuous furnishings and antiques filled the room. What drew Vin's attention was the wall over looking the mountains. It was all glass. Beyond the glass was the in ground swimming pool. Vin settled in to wait. Around nine o'clock a few of the guests had left. All that remained were three girls around Enrique and Mano and one couple.
"I believe we have waited long enough," stated Tommy. "Let's finish our business."
"I agree," said Buck.
"As you wish gentlemen," said Stanton. "Come with me."
They all got up to follow him except Enrique and Mano. Stanton looked back to them and realized they were stoned. He shook his head and headed for a door. Buck and Ezra carried the cases and followed. Tommy followed them and Shiko and Vin brought up the rear. He opened the door to reveal a large office. The glass wall continued into this room.
"Gentlemen, please be seated," he said. He went to a door and took out two AK47's and an MP5 assault rifle. He handed the MP5 to Vin who expertly checked the weapon. When he was done inspecting it he nodded to Buck.
"Very impressive," commented Buck. "How many AK47's and MP5's can you deliver?"
"Fifty of each and an assortment of smaller hand guns."
"Excellent," said Ezra. "Where did you come across Army ordinance, may I ask?"
"I have suppliers to get them from over seas," said Tommy.
"Fine," said Buck. "Now for our part of the deal."
Buck went to show them the cocaine when they heard a yell.
"This is the ATF! You're under arrested! Put your hands on your head!"
Buck, Vin and Ezra looked at each other in shock. One of the others teams had jumped the gun.
"Shit!" cried Vin.
They knew they couldn't let them get away. Ezra went after Stanton, Buck took Tommy and Vin went for Shiko.
+ + + + + + +
"SHIT!" Cried Chris at the same time as Vin. "ALL UNITS MOVE OUT! I REPEAT MOVE IN NOW!"
Chris jumped out of the van and headed for the house. The others fanned out behind him and they cautiously moved in.
+ + + + + + +
Vin traded kicks and jabs with Shiko so that they both sported split lips. Shiko came at Vin with a series of kicks that he was able to block. Vin had a feeling he was just playing with him and he hoped Chris got there soon. Meanwhile, Ezra had easily taken down Stanton who wasn't a fighter. He went to help Buck when Tommy landed a kick that sent him flying over the desk to land in a heap stunned. Ezra moved to see if he was all right. Tommy yelled something in Japanese to Shiko. Shiko had been backing Vin towards the glass wall when he heard the call from his boss. He increased his attacks and finally broke through Vin's defenses. He landed a flying sidekick that sent Vin sailing through the plate glass window. Ezra watched in horror as Vin landed on his back amongst the glass and didn't move. Next thing he knew Tommy and Shiko were jumping through the broken window and escaping. Buck had regained his feet and saw Vin lying by the pool.
"Vin!" they both yelled.
They both ran out the window and noticed Vin's left leg. The gray silk pants were covered in blood. As they got closer Vin rolled on his right side writhing in pain. They dropped to their knees by his side. Buck ripped open the pants leg to reveal the laceration that went from his hip to his ankle.
"Shit!" cried Buck pulling off his jacket and putting pressure on the wound to stop the bleeding.
"AGENT DOWN!" bellowed Ezra, "REPEAT AGENT DOWN!"
Buck looked to see Ezra trying to stop the bleeding from a long cut on Vin's back. He noticed other smaller cuts from when Vin landed amongst the glass. Vin was holding tightly to Ezra's left hand. Just then Chris burst through the door, and looked around.
"Chris!" yelled Buck, "Over here!"
JD had followed Chris into the office and they saw the broken window when Buck called. Icy hands had gripped Chris's heart when he heard Ezra call agent down. He was afraid of what he might find. He raced over to find Buck and Ezra trying to help a bloody Vin.
"JD!" Chris screamed. "Get those medic! NOW!"
Chris ran over pulling off his shirt and knelt next to Buck. He was trying to stop the bleeding on Vin's upper leg but didn't have enough hands for the lower part. Chris applied pressure from his knee down. Vin cried out in pain and clutched Ezra's hand. Nathan arrived on the scene and moved next to Vin. When he saw Vin's leg he knew what had to be done.
"Put him on his back!" he yelled. "Now!"
They did as he said and Vin moaned as they turned him over. Once on his back Nathan pressed down hard on his left leg close to the groin cutting off the pulse point.
"What the hell happened!" demanded Buck.
"Team 3 jumped the gun," snarled Chris.
They both kept pressure on his leg which was soaking their shirts. Vin was still conscious. Ezra had his upper body lying in his arms so he could put pressure on the back wound.
"Tommy, Shiko?" Vin gasped.
"I don't know, cowboy," Chris told him.
The medics arrived and assessed the situation. They started and IV and oxygen and told Buck and Chris to stay where they were. One of the medics took over from Nathan. Once the IV was in place they transferred him to the gurney. Chris called Ezra to take his place. As the team leader Chris had to stick around to wrap things up. He moved to Vin's head and leaned down.
"Hang in there, cowboy," he said, looking into Vin's pain filled eyes. "I'll meet you at the hospital."
Vin nodded and they moved out. Chris watched them go then turned to Josiah.
"Where's the leader of Team 3?" asked Chris in a deadly voice.