Death in Diamonds Chapter 12 cont’d..

Solana came running back to us and started beating me on the back with both fists. Lyons backhanded her across the face with his left hand. She fell backwards. His Marine Corp ring opened a cut causing a trickle of blood to flow from the corner of her mouth. I went to the sink, turned on the cold water tap, retrieved a glass and a dirty dish rag. I filled the glass and soaked the dish cloth. I threw the wet cloth to Solana. It landed on her chest. I threw the water from the glass in Ramon’s face. He started to come around.
“Ramon, does Solana here know you been sleeping with Terry Perez?” I asked. He moaned. I’m not sure if it was from the beating we gave him or the beating he could look forward to from Solana.
“You puerco,” swine, Solana shouted at Ramon, trying to get up.
“He lie. I doan sleep with anybody but ju, baby,” Ramon said.
“Ju puerco acostado,” you lying pig, Solana shouted
“Amor mi,” my love, “there is no one but ju,” Ramon pleaded.
“Bullshit,” Solana spat out in unaccented English.
Solana made another lung and finally reached Ramon. She started slapping his already bloody face. Solana’s hot blooded Latin spitfire temperament poured forth and Lyons needed both hands and a lot of strength to keep her from killing Ramon before we could find out more about the necklace.
“You know Tony Ciano, don’t you?” I asked Lyons, looking at him after Solana quieted.
“Yeah, why?”
“Do you think Tony C. would be interested in knowing that Ramon here is skimming his money?”
“I think Tony C. would very much like to know that Ramon is stealing from him,” Lyons said. Ramon cringed and cowered back.
“I doan steal no the money from Mr. C.”
“Ramon, who stole the necklace?” I asked when his breathing return closer to normal. His shirt was now pink with his watered down blood. The bleeding from Ramon’s nose slowed. His right eye was swollen completely closed and his left eye was barely open. His face turned black, blue and pulpy. I don’t know how much more he could take before he passed out – for good. And I didn’t give a damn.

Death in Diamonds Chapter 12 cont’d.

“I’ve heard that before.”
“Terry Perez said she gave the necklace to you. She confessed to stealing it and giving it to you. We want it back and we want it back now.”
“Man, I toll ju, she didin’ give me no necklace.”
Solana made a lunge for me. Her fingernails, extended like cat’s claws defending her cubs were aimed for my eyes. Lyons grabbed her by the hair and flung her back across the kitchen. She crashed into a corner and landed in a heap with the hem of her sleep tee around her waist. Solana was naked under the tee. She started to cry. Her crying didn’t faze me.
“Once more Ramon, we want the necklace.”
“Man, I toll ju…” I didn’t wait for him to finish his lie. I hit him again. His right eye was beginning to close. His nose bled down the front of his white tee shirt.
“Aw you promised,” Lyons said.
“Sorry. Hey Ramon, lie to me again so the my friend can hit you, ok?”
“Thanks,” Lyons said.
“One last time Ramon, where is the necklace?” I asked.
“Hey Ramon, lie to him so I can hit you,” Lyons said. “I haven’t hit anyone all morning.”
“It got stole.”
“Stole. What so you mean stole?” I asked.
“Aw, damn,” Lyons said.
“Who stole the necklace from big bad you?” I asked.
“El hombre.” The man.
“Ramon, we’re going to need more than just ‘El hombre’ here. Who stole it?”
“A man I know.”
I stepped aside and waved Lyons towards Ramon and said, “Your turn.” Lyons walked up to Ramon and without saying a word hit him with a right uppercut to the solar plexus knocking Ramon and the chair over and causing Ramon to gasp for each breath. Solana screamed once, got up from the floor and tried to comfort Ramon. Lyons pushed Solana back into the corner. While Ramon struggled to regain his breath. Lyons and I got Ramon back on the chair.
“Next time, maybe we should bring some rope and duct tape,” Lyons said.
“Remind me next time.”

Death in Diamonds Chapter 12 cont’d

“If that gun in your hand moves, I will shoot you and bits of your skull and your brains and blood will be splattered all over that wall behind you, do you understand?” I pressed the barrel of my .45 deeper into the bridge of nose as if to press my point forcing him back into the chair. He yelped again in pain.
“Jes,” he said as I took his gun away and handed it to Lyons.
Lyons dropped the magazine from Ramon’s gun and racked the slide back ejecting the bullet from the chamber sending it flying in the air. He deftly caught the bullet in mid-flight with his free hand and slipped the clip, bullet and Ramon’s gun in his pocket.
“Ramon, you remember me?” I asked.
“Jes,” he said automatically touching his bandaged nose.
“Good. We want the necklace that Terry Perez gave you.”
“I doan’ know nothin’ ’bout no necklace.” I hit Ramon on his bandaged nose. He screamed. I try not to punch anyone in the mouth with my bare fists. Teeth can do more damage to a fist than bare knuckles can do to a mouth. For dental work I prefer a Louisville Slugger, it works better.
“Ramon, the necklace.”
“I doan got no necklace.”
“Ramon, Ramon. Do I have to hit you again?” I asked.
“Let me,” Lyons said.
“Ok. Next time, I promise.” I said to Lyons. “Ramon, the my friend wants to hit you and he hits a lot harder than I do so Ramon, don’t make me let him hit you. Now, I’ll tell you again, we want the necklace Terry Perez stole and gave you.”
“She lie. She didin’ give me no necklace.” I hit him with another left jab to his broken nose. He screamed and started to rise from the chair. I hit him again with a right cross putting my whole body behind the punch. It knocked him back into the chair.
“You promised I could hit him,” Lyons said.
“Sorry, next time.”

Death in Diamonds Chapter 12

I called Lyons as soon as I reached the office the morning following Vanessa and my date night. “Corporal, I think I need to talk with Ramon Urruela this morning and I think it might be a good idea if you tagged along. How about meeting me here at the office and bring donuts, the coffee’s dripping.”
“Can I put the donuts on my expense account?”
“What expense account?” He was here in twenty minutes with a box of Dunkin’ Donuts
We drove to Ramon’s address on Riggs Street just west of Thirteenth Street. He lived in what were called when they were built of red brick around 1900 and 1910, Row Houses. Today the yuppies call them Town Houses.
“How do you want to work this?” Lyons asked.
“I think we’ll knock on the door, barge in when he opens it and beat the crap out of him until he begs us to take the necklace back,” I said.
“That works for me.”
I knocked on the door and a well endowed Hispanic woman of about twenty-two with dark hair to her shoulders opened the door. She stood five feet two inches in her bare feet and wearing a knee length white sleep tee shirt and not much else. She held a cup of black coffee in her hand. I noticed that her fingernails were claw like.
“Solana, we want to see Ramon,” I said.
“How come ju know my name?” She asked.
“We’re detectives, we know everything. We want to talk with Ramon.”
“He’s no here.”
“Yes he is,” I said as we pushed her out of the way and barged into the house over her protests.
“Ramon!” She shouted. Ramon was sitting at the kitchen table finishing his breakfast. He jumped up dropping his fork and flipping over his plate of eggs as we stormed in reaching around to the small of his back to pull a nine millimeter Glock. I pulled my .45 and pressed the barrel hard on the bandaged portion of his nose between his eyes while grabbing his tee shirt with my left hand and pulling him into my gun. He winced in pain.

Death in Diamonds Chapter 11 cont’d….

“As a general rule, I don’t like to hit a woman but when one comes at me with a weapon, all bets are off,” Lyons said to me, flexing his right hand. We both had seen armed women in the Gulf whose only job was to kill us.
“Believe it or not, Ramon, I’m getting tired of hitting you and if you don’t tell me the truth the my friend here will just have to have a little talk with his good friend Tony Ciano; or maybe he’ll just beat the crap out of you. Who stole the necklace?”
“Ramon, who would have the balls to steal something from such a well connected hombre as you?” Lyons asked.
“If I tell ju, he’ll kill me,” Ramon said.
“Ramon, if you don’t tell me, I may kill you or he may kill you,” I said pointing to Lyons. “Or maybe Tony Ciano will kill you. But somebody will definitely kill you and I’m closer to you now than any of them. What’s his name?”
Ramon didn’t answer for a few moments then he finally said, “Julio Ramirez .”
“Where can we find this Julio Ramirez?”
“I doan’ know.”
“Ramon, I’m tired. My friend is fresh and eager and will hit you if you don’t tell us the truth.” I said.
“Ramon, lie to us,” Lyons said, punching his right fist into his the palm of his left hand.
“I doan know where he lives. But he hangs in Logan Circle.”
“What’s he look like?” I asked.
“Colombian, black hair combed straight back, about jor size. He a big hombre in the Hispanic gangs. He mean, he just as soon kill ju as look at ju.”
I went to the sink, found a clean towel, soaked it with cold water, rung it out and tossed it to Ramon. He winced as he caught it against his face. As we walked out I saw Solana jump up, beat on Ramon’s already beaten face and cursing him with what I could only assume was a torrid stream of Spanish profanity.

Death in Diamonds Chapter 11 cont’d…

Solana made another lung and finally reached Ramon. She started slapping his already bloody face. Solana’s hot blooded Latin spitfire temperament poured forth and Lyons needed both hands and a lot of strength to keep her from killing Ramon before we could find out more about the necklace.
“You know Tony Ciano, don’t you?” I asked Lyons, looking at him after Solana quieted.
“Yeah, why?”
“Do you think Tony C. would be interested in knowing that Ramon here is skimming his money?”
“I think Tony C. would very much like to know that Ramon is stealing from him,” Lyons said. Ramon cringed and cowered back.
“I doan steal no the money from Mr. C.”
“Ramon, who stole the necklace?” I asked when his breathing return closer to normal. His shirt was now pink with his watered down blood. The bleeding from Ramon’s nose slowed. His right eye was swollen completely closed and his left eye was barely open. His face turned black, blue and pulpy. I don’t know how much more he could take before he passed out – for good. And I didn’t give a damn.
“I doan know.” I hit him with a left jab to his broken nose. He screamed and started to rise from the chair. Blood started flowing down his shirt again. I hit him again with a right cross putting my shoulder behind the punch knocking him back into the chair.
“You promised I could hit him again.”
“Sorry, next time.”
Solana jumped up from the floor grabbing a dirty chef knife from the sink and ran to us. I’m not sure who she intended to use that knife on, Lyons, myself or Ramon. Lyons grabbed the hand that held the knife and bent her arm backwards over her shoulder where an arm was never intended to be bent. Solana screamed in pain and the knife clattered to the floor. Lyons swung his fist and hit Solana in the middle of her face. She screamed again. I heard his punch land and break her nose knocking her back into the corner. The front of her white sleep tee turned red as blood ran down from her broken nose.

Death in Diamonds Chapter 11 cont’d..

“Ramon, we’re going to need more than just ‘El hombre’ here. Who stole it?”
“A man I know.”
I stepped aside and waved Lyons towards Ramon and said, “Your turn.” Lyons walked up to Ramon and without saying a word hit him with a right uppercut to the solar plexus knocking Ramon and the chair over and causing Ramon to gasp for each breath. Solana screamed once, got up from the floor and tried to comfort Ramon. Lyons pushed Solana back into the corner. While Ramon struggled to regain his breath. Lyons and I got Ramon back on the chair.
“Next time, maybe we should bring some rope and duct tape,” Lyons said.
“Remind me next time.”
Solana came running back to us and started beating me on the back with both fists. Lyons backhanded her across the face with his left hand. She fell backwards. His Marine Corp ring opened a cut causing a trickle of blood to flow from the corner of her mouth. I went to the sink, turned on the cold water tap, retrieved a glass and a dirty dish rag. I filled the glass and soaked the dish cloth. I threw the wet cloth to Solana. It landed on her chest. I threw the water from the glass in Ramon’s face. He started to come around.
“Ramon, does Solana here know you been sleeping with Terry Perez?” I asked. He moaned. I’m not sure if it was from the beating we gave him or the beating he could look forward to from Solana.
“You puerco,” swine, Solana shouted at Ramon, trying to get up.
“He lie. I doan sleep with anybody but ju, baby,” Ramon said.
“Ju puerco acostado,” you lying pig, Solana shouted
“Amor mi,” my love, “there is no one but ju,” Ramon pleaded.
“Bullshit,” Solana spat out in unaccented English.