Page 1


~2~  

Hate Crime – Justin Graves Series Book 9 Copyright © 2012 by Terry Wright Includes – The Perfect Crime – Justin Graves Series Bonus Short Story Copyright © 2012 by Terry Wright All rights reserved. No part of this story (eBook) 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, without written permission of the author, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles or book reviews. This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places and incidences are either a product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to any actual person, living or dead, events, or locales is entirely coincidental. Published by TWB Press Cover Art by Terry Wright ISBN 978-1-936991-42-6


~3~

A new kind of justice is coming Texas Ranger Justin Graves and his rebellious daughter, Christy, are dead, both murdered by her drug-dealer boyfriend, Billy Denton. Due to Justin’s dedication to the department and long hours away from home, he blames himself for her life of crime, so he makes a deal with the devil to save her soul: one hundred bad guys in exchange for her pardon from hell. Now, in his rotting corpse, he returns from the grave to deliver the devil his dues, the souls of killers who’d gotten away with murder.


~4~

This story is based on the November 18, 1997 racially motivate killing of Oumar Dia, an African immigrant, at a downtown Denver bus stop, and the crippling of Good Samaritan Jeannie VanVelkinburg. Though the gunman, Nathan Thill, received life in prison, his accomplice, Jeremiah Barnum, got off on a technicality over tainted testimony. The names have been changed to protect the guilty.

By Terry Wright

In the darkened room of a rundown house on the forgotten side of town, forty-one-year-old Jenny Vandenburg lay curled up on a sagging mattress, her body wracked with chronic pain from an old bullet wound in her back. Her wheelchair was parked an arm’s reach away, though she had no strength to actually reach out for it much less drag her damaged frame up onto the seat. In her right hand, she clutched a bottle of Dilaudid painkiller pills. It had been an agonizing five years since the shooting, and tonight, for the first time, peace would come to her. She shed no tears, as she’d already cried enough: for herself, for


~5~

her growing sons, and for the black stranger whose life was snuffed out right before her eyes. Back then she was a heroine, a Good Samaritan they’d called her, for her efforts to protect the victim of a hate crime. She was honored by the city’s mayor, showered with praise and financial assistance, hence the wheelchair, and as she convalesced, her optimism and fighting spirit were an inspiration to everyone in the town of Deckers, Texas. However, after countless surgeries, the doctors finally told her they couldn’t fix her spine. They prescribed her an array of pills that did little or nothing to relieve her suffering. The public’s attention soon waned, and she found herself left with the crushing reality of getting through each painful day, alone. Now she could only lay in bed, hardly able to sit up. Through it all, her sons had grown out of childhood, a brutal and deprived life that revolved around their crippled mother. If it weren’t for her sister and brother-in-law, those boys would’ve never played ball, gone fishing, or learned to tie a square knot. Today’s news had dealt her the final blow. She’d thrown the newspaper on the floor when she saw the headlines: Burnham Freed. Now despair over her agonizing paralysis and the outcome of the trial made her contemplate the only remedy she had left. She just wanted to get it over with. Her fifteen-year-old son opened the bedroom door. “Mom, I’m


~6~

going to eat some cereal. Is that okay?” “Yes, dear.” Her frail voice sounded like it came from the throat of a dying frog. “Are you all right?” “I don’t want to live anymore.” “You always say that, Mom.” “Where’s your brother?” “Watching TV in his room.” “Go to bed, both of you. Aunt Sara will be here for you in the morning.” “Goodnight, Mom.” He closed the door. “Goodbye,” she whispered to herself. Mostly she feared what would happen to her boys for whom she’d endured all this misery to raise. They were good boys. Sara would take care of them from now on. They’d understand why their mother left them. Oh, they’d be upset, at first, no doubt, but they were accustomed to coping with personal tragedy, courtesy of Gary Burnham, the bastard who got away with murder. If she had it to do all over again, she wondered if she would have turned the other way when those skinheads attacked the black stranger. Helping him seemed like the right thing to do at the time. But right now, she didn’t know if she’d repeat that fateful decision. Right now, she didn’t care. Right now, it was time to end it all. The pill bottle came up


~7~

to her lips, and with a mighty dry gulp, she swallowed the last medication she’d ever need. *** In the afterlife, the soft light around Justin flickered and glowed, an indication that there was something he needed to know. He sat in his favorite recliner, which the light supplied him, and set his cowboy hat on his knee. “What do you got for me, Wach-el?” The angel Wach-el, Justin’s mentor in the afterlife, spoke in a low, smooth voice from the light. “Five years ago, a hate crime rocked the city of Deckers. Its final victim has just died, and she will come to you, Justice, a restless and damaged soul who took her own life to escape her tortured existence. While you are waiting, I want you to see what happened back then.” The light parted and showed him a scene from the land of the living, a bus stop on a downtown street corner. “It was after two o’clock in the morning on November 18th 1997.” A dim streetlamp illuminated a slight-framed black man wearing a baseball cap. He sat on the bench. “His name is Edmond Day.” Justin noticed how unassuming the man appeared, frail and not well fed. “He has just finished his shift at the hotel where he works as a bellhop. Life is hard for him. He sends his wages to his village in Africa where his wife and three children still live.”


~8~

Justin nodded. The land of opportunity, with liberty and justice for all, wasn’t overflowing with the glory and good life that America professed to the world. Hard work, late hours, and personal sacrificed had all but laid waste to the poor black man. A woman approached the bus stop bench, statuesque, thirtysomething, a hefty woman brimming with pride and all smiles for the man on the bench. “Her name is Jenny Vandenburg. She is a single mother of two fine boys and a nurses’ aide at the hospital nearby. For her, life is paycheck-to-paycheck, but she is determined to make things better for her family.” “Hello,” she said to the black man, Edmond Day. He tipped the bill of his ball cap and scooted to the side. She sat next to him, rested her handbag on her lap. “Fine evening.” “Yes, ma’am—” A commotion down the street quickly drew the couple’s attention to two men walking toward the bus stop. They wore chain-laced leather vests, sleeveless shirts, camouflaged pants tucked into black combat boots, and black gloves with the fingers cut off. Their heads were shaved, and on their arms they displayed tattoos of swastikas, exploding bombs, and black men hanging from tree branches. Justin’s throat clutched. He’d been in the cop business long enough to know trouble when he saw it.


~9~

“They just left their jobs at an all-night gas station and are headed for the Fourth Reich Bar. It’s a Mecca for white supremacists and the Neo Nazi movement.” “Fine upstanding citizens,” Justin muttered. They were perfect examples of freedom of speech and personal expression taken to limits beyond anything this country’s founding fathers could have ever imagined. “The big guy is Gary Burnham, scum, and the runt is Daniel Thrill. But don’t let his size fool you.” Swapping obscenities and laughing, they bantered back and forth as they approached, but when they spotted the small black man sitting on the bus stop bench, their demeanor suddenly changed. Justin felt the air become charged with tension. To purchase this e-book, which includes the Bonus Short Story “The Perfect Crime” go to www.twbpress.com/hatecrime.html to find the links to Amazon Kindle, Barnes&Noble Nook, TWB Press, and other online booksellers.


~10~

About the Author

 

There’s nothing mundane in the writing world of Terry Wright. Tension, conflict and suspense propel his readers through the pages as if they were on fire. Published in Science Fiction and Supernatural, his mastery of the action thriller has won him International acclaim as an accomplished screenplay writer. A longtime member of the Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers, he runs their annual Colorado Gold Writing Contest. Terry lives near Denver with his wife, Bobette. Terry invites you to visit his Website at www.terrywrightbooks.com where you’ll find more information on his short stories, novels, and screenplays.


~11~

Enjoy other fine short stories and novels from TWB Press

The Gates of Hell, Justin Graves Series, Book 1 (TWB Press, 2010) A short story by Terry Wright http://www.twbpress.com/thegatesofhell.html

Night Stalker, Justin Graves Series, Book 2 (TWB Press, 2010) A short story by Terry Wright http://www.twbpress.com/nightstalker.html

Black Widow, Justin Graves Series, Book 3 (TWB Press, 2010) A short story by Terry Wright http://www.twbpress.com/blackwidow.html

Riches to Rags, Justin Graves Series, Book 4 (TWB Press, 2010) A short story by Terry Wright http://www.twbpress.com/richestorags.html

The Beauty Queen, Justin Graves Series, Book 5 (TWB Press, 2010) A short story by Terry Wright http://www.twbpress.com/thebeautyqueen.html


~12~

Judgment Day, Justin Graves Series, Book 6 (TWB Press, 2011) A short story by Terry Wright http://www.twbpress.com/judgmentday.html

The Assassin, Justin Graves Series, Book 7 (TWB Press, 2011) A short story by Terry Wright http://www.twbpress.com/theassassin.html

Drunk Driver, Justin Graves Series, Book 8 (TWB Press, 2011) A short story by Terry Wright http://www.twbpress.com/drunkdriver.html

A Choir of Angels (TWB Press, 2011) A short story by Marilyn Baron http://www.twbpress.com/achoirofangels.html

Follow an Angel (TWB Press, 2011) A short story by Marilyn Baron http://www.twbpress.com/followanangel.html


~13~

The Stand-in Bridegroom (TWB Press, 2011) A short story by Marilyn Baron http://www.twbpress.com/thestandinbridegroom.html

Just Desserts (TWB Press, 2011) A short story by Stephen A. Benjamin http://www.twbpress.com/justdeserts.html

C.A.T. (TWB Press, 2011) A short story by Rosie Oliver http://www.twbpress.com/cat.html

Neptune’s Angel (TWB Press, 2012) A short story by Rosie Oliver http://www.twbpress.com/neptunesangel.html

Z-motors, The Job From Hell (TWB Press, 2011) A short story by Terry Wright http://www.twbpress.com/zmotors.html


~14~

Street Beat (TWB Press, 2011) A short story by Terry Wright http://www.twbpress.com/streetbeat.html

What Happened to Rhodri (TWB Press, 2011) A short story by Craig Jones http://www.twbpress.com/whathappenedtorhodri.html

Gem, No Loose Ends, Vampire Series, Book 1 (TWB Press, 2011) A short story by Craig Jones http://www.twbpress.com/gemnolooseends.html

Gem, No Secrets, Vampire Series, Book 2 (TWB Press, 2011) A short story by Craig Jones http://www.twbpress.com/gemnosecrets.html

Gem, No Choices, Vampire Series, Book 3 (TWB Press, 2011) A short story by Craig Jones http://www.twbpress.com/gemnochoices.html


~15~

Gem – No Fear, Vampire Series, Book 4 (TWB Press, 2012) A short story by Craig Jones http://www.twbpress.com/gemnofear.html

Gem, No Conspiracy, Vampire Series, FREE ebook (TWB Press, 2011) A short story by Craig Jones http://www.twbpress.com/gemnoconspiracy.html

The Jokers of Sarzuz (TWB Press, 2011) A short story by Paul Sherman http://www.twbpress.com/thejokersofsarzuz.html

Daemon Page (TWB Press, 2011) A short story by Paul Sherman http://www.twbpress.com/daemonpage.html

Perfect World (TWB Press, 2011) A novel by AJ Kirby http://www.twbpress.com/perfectworld.html


~16~

The Black Book (TWB Press, 2011) A short story by AJ Kirby http://www.twbpress.com/theblackbook.html

The Haunting of Annie Nicol (TWB Press, 2012) A short story by AJ Kirby http://www.twbpress.com/thehauntingofannien.html

The 13th Power Quest, Book 1 (TWB Press, 2011) A novel by Terry Wright http://www.twbpress.com/the13thpowerquest.html

The 13th Power Journey, Book 2 (TWB Press, 2011) A novel by Terry Wright http://www.twbpress.com/the13thpowerjourney.html

The 13th Power War, Book 3 (TWB Press, Coming Soon) A novel by Terry Wright http://www.twbpress.com/the13thpowerwar.html


~17~

The Grief Syndrome (TWB Press, 2011) A novel by Terry Wright http://www.twbpress.com/thegriefsyndrome.html

The Duplication Factor (TWB Press, 2011) A novel by Terry Wright http://www.twbpress.com/duplicationfactor.html

Ghost in the Machine (TWB Press, 2011) A short story by Dean Giles http://www.twbpress.com/ghostinthemachine.html

Alien Apocalypse – The Storm (TWB Press, 2011) A short story by Dean Giles http://www.twbpress.com/alienapocalypsethestorm.html

Alien Apocalypse – Genesis (TWB Press, 2012) A short story by Dean Giles http://www.twbpress.com/alienapocalypsiegenesis.html


~18~

Alien Apocalypse – The Hunger, FREE ebook (TWB Press, 2011) A short story by Dean Giles (Prequel to The Storm) http://www.twbpress.com/alienapocalypsethehunger.html

Incurable (TWB Press, 2011) A short story by Brandy de Cusack http://www.twbpress.com/incurable.html

The Malagasy Tortoise, A Jim Morgan Adventure (TWB Press, 2012) A Novel by James Halon http://www.twbpress.com/themalagasytortoise.html

www.twbpress.com

Hate Crime  

A new kind of justice is coming Texas Ranger Justin Graves and his rebellious daughter, Christy, are dead, both murdered by her drug-dealer...

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you