Read Murder Takes Time Online

Authors: Giacomo Giammatteo

Tags: #Fiction, #Mystery & Detective, #General, #Thrillers, #Suspense, #Hard-Boiled

Murder Takes Time

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Rule Number One—Murder Takes Time

Chapter 2: A Big Mistake

Chapter 3: Ties to the Past

Chapter 4: With Life Comes Death

Chapter 5: Coppers

Chapter 6: Confession

Chapter 7: Investigation

Chapter 8: The Oath

Chapter 9: Mikey “The Face” Fagullo

Chapter 10: More Evidence

Chapter 11: Angela

Chapter 12: A Stacked Deck

Chapter 13: What’s in a Name?

Chapter 14: Roach Races

Chapter 15: Forbidden Fruit

Chapter 16: More Charts

Chapter 17: A New Direction

Chapter 18: A Gathering of Friends

Chapter 19: Thoughts of Death

Chapter 20: Death Is Forever

Chapter 21: Confinement

Chapter 22: Bad News Never Stops

Chapter 23: Another Funeral

Chapter 24: Things in Common

Chapter 25: Reformation

Chapter 26: Marriage Lasts Forever

Chapter 27: Release

Chapter 28: A Cleansing of the Soul

Chapter 29: Where Is the Evidence?

Chapter 30: Reunion

Chapter 31: Questioning

Chapter 32: A New Job

Chapter 33: Very Good Friends

Chapter 34: Johnny Muck

Chapter 35: Johnny Muck Takes an Apprentice

Chapter 36: Donnie Amato

Chapter 37: An Unexpected Call

Chapter 38: Special Delivery

Chapter 39: DNA Doesn’t Lie

Chapter 40: Motives

Chapter 41: A Busy Year

Chapter 42: Oaths and Friends

Chapter 43: Happy Birthday, Tony

Chapter 44: A New Assignment

Chapter 45: Advice

Chapter 46: A Long-lost Letter

Chapter 47: Rule Number Two—Murder Has Consequences

Chapter 48: Tough Decisions

Chapter 49: Indianapolis

Chapter 50: Tony and Tito Have Lunch

Chapter 51: Shattered Oath

Chapter 52: Where to Now?

Chapter 53: A New Life

Chapter 54: Late-night Call

Chapter 55: Rule Number Three—Murder Takes Patience

Chapter 56: Who Is Watching?

Chapter 57: Things in Common

Chapter 58: You Can’t Hide Forever

Chapter 59: Caught

Chapter 60: Say Goodbye to Cleveland

Chapter 61: Call from Cleveland

Chapter 62: Precautions

Chapter 63: Who’s Next

Chapter 64: Rule Number Four—Murder Is Invisible

Chapter 65: Martyrs and Saints

Chapter 66: Begging for Help

Chapter 67: Rattus Rattus

Chapter 68: Watching the Watchers

Chapter 69: Judgment Day

Chapter 70: A New Shopping List

Chapter 71: A Long Wait

Chapter 72: Rule Number Five—Murder Is A Promise

Chapter 73: Trapped

Chapter 74: Old Memories





Giacomo Giammatteo


© Copyright 2012 Giacomo Giammatteo

All rights reserved. No part of this book 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 from the author, except for the inclusion of brief quotations in a review.

Electronic Edition

Inferno Publishing Company

For more information about this book, visit

Print ISBN 978-0-9850302-0-9

Electronic ISBN 978-0-9850302-1-6

This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and events herein are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.

It is not the oath that makes us believe the man, but the man the oath.

– Aeschylus




Brooklyn, New York—Current Day

e sipped the last of a shitty cup of coffee and stared across the street at Nino Tortella, the guy he was going to kill. Killing was an art, requiring finesse, planning, skill—and above all—patience. Patience had been the most difficult to learn. The killing came naturally. He cursed himself for that. Prayed to God every night for the strength to stop. But so far God hadn’t answered him, and there were still a few more people that needed killing.

The waitress leaned forward to refill his cup, her cleavage a hint that more than coffee was being offered. “You want more?”

He waved a hand—Nino was heading towards his car. “Just the check, please.”

From behind her ear she pulled a yellow pencil, tucked into a tight bun of red hair, then opened the receipt book clipped to the pocket of her apron. Cigarette smoke lingered on her breath, almost hidden by the gum she chewed.

, he thought, and smiled. It was his favorite, too.

He waited for her to leave, scanned the table and booth, plucked a few strands of hair from the torn cushion and a fingernail clipping from the windowsill. After putting them into a small plastic bag, he wiped everything with a napkin. The check was $4.28. He pulled a five and a one from his money clip and left them on the table. As he moved to the door he glanced out the window. Nino already left the lot, but it was Thursday, and on Thursdays Nino stopped for pizza.

He parked three blocks from Nino’s house, finding a spot where the snow wasn’t piled high at the curb. After pulling a black wool cap over his forehead, he put leather gloves on, raised the collar on his coat then grabbed his black sports bag. Favoring his left leg, he walked down the street, dropping his eyes if he passed someone. The last thing he wanted was a witness remembering his face.

He counted the joints in the concrete as he walked. Numbers forced him to think logically, kept his mind off what he had to do. He didn’t
to kill Nino. He
to. It seemed as if all of his life he was doing things he didn’t want to do. He shook his head, focused on the numbers again.

When he drew near the house, he cast a quick glance to ensure the neighbors’ cars weren’t there. The door took less than thirty seconds to open. He kept his hat and gloves on, walked into the kitchen, and set his bag on the counter. He removed a pair of tongs and a shot glass, and set them on the coffee table. A glance around the room had him straightening pictures and moving dirty dishes to the sink. A picture of an older woman stared at him from a shelf above an end table.
Might be his mother,
he thought, and gently set it face down. Back to the kitchen. He opened the top of the black bag and removed two smaller bags. He set one in the fridge and took the other with him.

The contents of the second bag—hair and other items—he spread throughout the living room. The crime scene unit would get a kick out of that. He did one final check, removed a baseball bat from the bag, then sat on the couch behind the door. The bat lay on the cushion beside him. While he stretched his legs and leaned back, he thought about Nino. It would be easy to just shoot him, but that wouldn’t be fair. Renzo suffered for what he did; Nino should too. He remembered Mamma Rosa’s warnings, that the things people did would come back to haunt them. Nino would pay the price now.

A car pulled into the driveway. He sat up straight and gripped the bat.

on his face and a bounce in his step. It was only Thursday and already he’d sold more cars than he needed for the month.
Maybe I’ll buy Anna that coat she’s been wanting.
Nino’s stomach rumbled, but he had a pepperoni pizza in his hand and a bottle of Chianti tucked into his coat pocket. He opened the door, slipped the keys into his pocket, and kicked the door shut with his foot.

There was a black sports bag on the kitchen table.
Wasn’t there before,
Nino thought. A shiver ran down his spine. He felt a presence in the house. Before he could turn, something slammed into his back. His right kidney exploded with pain.

“Goddamn.” Nino dropped the pizza, stumbled, and fell to the floor. His right side felt on fire. As his left shoulder collided with the hardwood floor, a bat hit him just above the wrist. The snap of bones sounded just before the surge of pain.

“Fuck.” He rolled to the side and reached for his gun.

The bat swung again.

Nino’s ribs cracked like kindling. Something sharp jabbed deep inside him. His mouth filled with a warm coppery taste. Nino recognized the man who stood above him. “Anything you want,” he said. “Just kill me quick.”

knee, the crunch of bones drowned by his screams. The man stared at Nino. Let him cry. “I got Renzo last month. You hear about that?”

Nino nodded.

He tapped Nino’s pocket with his foot, felt a gun. “If you reach for the gun, I’ll hit you again.”

Another nod.

He knelt next to Nino, took the shot glass from the coffee table. “Open your mouth.”

Nino opened his eyes wide and shook his head.

The man grabbed the tongs, shoved one end into the side of Nino’s mouth, and squeezed the handles, opening the tongs wide. When he had Nino’s mouth pried open enough, he shoved the shot glass in. It was a small shot glass, but to Nino it must have seemed big enough to hold a gallon. Nino tried screaming, but couldn’t. Couldn’t talk either, with the glass in there. Nino’s head bobbed, and he squirmed. Nothing but grunts came out—fear-tinged mumbles coated with blood.

The man stood, glared at Nino. Gripped the bat with both hands. “You shouldn’t have done it.”

A dark stain spread on the front of Nino’s pants. The stench of excrement filled the room. He stared at Nino, raised the bat over his head, and swung. Nino’s lips burst open, splitting apart from both sides. Teeth shattered, some flying out, others embedding into the flesh of his cheeks. The shot glass exploded. Glass dug deep gouges into his tongue, severing the front of it. Shards of glass pierced his lips and tunneled into his throat.

He stared at Nino’s face, the strips of torn flesh covered in blood. He gulped. Almost stopped. But then he thought about what Nino had done, and swung the bat one more time. After that, Nino Tortella lay still.

He returned to the kitchen and took a small box from the bag on the counter then went back to the living room. Inside the box were more hairs, blood, skin, and other evidence. He spread the items over and around the body then made a final trip to the kitchen to clean up. He undressed and placed his clothes into a large plastic bag, tied it, and set it inside the black bag. He took out a change of clothes, including shoes and plastic covers for them. Careful not to step in any blood, he went back to stand over the body.

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