Free Breakout by Richard Stark

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Authors: Richard Stark
to him. The third man, Haye, was in the car outside.
    Maryenne herself wasn’t a junkie, at least Williams hoped she wasn’t, but she sure hung out with the wrong people, and Eldon
     was still one of them. The kind of self-confidence he brought into the bank was not the kind he’d get from working with Williams
     but the kind he’d get from the stuff in his veins. There was no reason to start shooting, and just bad luck the off-duty cop
     was in there looking for a car loan.
    The result was, a guard and Eldon both dead and Williams and Haye both facing murder one. Escape was the only Plan B, and
     this guy Parker the only one in Stoneveldt with the determination and the friends on the outside to make it happen.
    Williams had been happy to stick with Parker in Stoneveldt, though he would have been more comfortable if his partner had
     been of color. But nobody of color in that place looked to be making a key to get out of there, and Parker did. So when Parker
     asked him to come along, he rode with the idea, though at first with every caution. Does this guy really want a partner, or
     does he want somebody to throw off the sled when the chase starts?
    Throughout their time together inside, Williams had watched the man he’d known then as Kasper, waiting for him to give himself
     away, and it never happened. It looked as though Parker was just a guy determined to get out of that place, who’d known he
     couldn’t do it on his own but needed a couple more guys in it with him, and who’d decided Williams should be part of the crew.
     No more, no less.
    Well, that was then, this was now. They were out, though still not many miles from Stoneveldt. But guards and gates and prison
     walls didn’t hold them apart any more. Williams watched Parker, thinking, I done my part, I been straight with you. I know
     you got me out of there, but I got you out of there, too, so what does that mean? Is this crew still together?
    He was dependent on Parker, whichever way he went. It wasn’t possible to ask anything, so all he could do was stand there
     and watch and wait, and know that, sooner or later, they would both be going to ground, but in very different places.
    While they all stood there, looking at the water where the van had been, nobody with anything else to say right now, here
     came two cars, both anonymous, a green Ford Taurus and a black Honda Accord. Mackey was first, at the wheel of the Taurus.
     Both cars stopped, and Angioni said, “You two ride with Ed, he knows where we’re going. See you there.”
    Parker slid into the front passenger seat, Williams into the back. On the seat was a little bundle of clothing. As Mackey
     drove them forward, Williams slipped out of his shoes and the prison guard’s pants, and put on instead gray chinos and a green
     patterned shirt. In front, Parker made a similar changeover.
    As they headed on down the dirt road, back the way they’d come in, the Honda following, Williams moved forward to put his
     forearms on the seatback behind the other two, and watch the road. No one said anything until after they’d reached the blacktop
     and turned right, and then Parker said, “Did Tom tell you about this new job?”
    Mackey grinned. “My guess was,” he said, “you weren’t gonna like it, not at first. You and Brenda and me, we want to be in
     some other part of the world.”
    “That’s what makes sense,” Parker agreed.
    Williams supposed that was what made sense for him, too, the way things were. He was a local boy, who had made a little too
     good. As soon as possible, he should ease out to some other part of the country. It’s a big country, and a black boy can make
     himself hard to see.
    Mackey was saying, “It isn’t a bad job. We should be able to work it without problems, and at least we’ll get off this table
     top with a little cash profit.”
    Williams said, “This is a cash job? It’s tough to find real cash, I mean, enough to make it worthwhile.”

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