Taxis are ten a penny in this town, but none of them drives like me. I'd managed to maintain a reputation for being the best damn wheel man in the city. When you're as good as me, word gets round.
Word got round so much that I was recruited by one of the big time dealers. God knows where he got my number, but he got it. He wanted someone full time, on call. I'd only ever done robberies and one offs before. I jumped at the chance to have guaranteed work. It wasn't guaranteed income, but I got a cut of whatever he made. It must have been a substantial amount for him to need a full time driver.
I got my first call out of the blue. He needed a ride to the supermarket. Something about buying caffeine pills. He must have needed to stay awake for a long time. I took him home after this and didn't hear anything for a few weeks.
I heard from him sporadically over the next few months, driving him across town. These were various drug deals, weapon trades with other dealers and so on. The last time he called me was to drive him to something big.
I picked him up from his place and drove him to the deal. He had with him an overnight bag. I presumed it was full of meth, or crack or whatever. It was quiet when we got there. An isolated car park in an industrial estate. He had been quiet for some time. Normally he was chattering away like any other druggie. This time he was different.
After a while another car pulled close. A guy I didn't recognise stepped out and walked towards us. The window was wound down.
A few weeks earlier he taught me his secret distress signal, three taps to the gear stick.
The figure that approached leant into the window. The smell of his cheap aftershave drifted into the car like the pungent smell of rancid meat. He exuded an heir of power that comes with having everyone be scared of you. He looked like the man you didn't cross, and if you did, you never had the chance to regret it.
Three taps to the gear stick.
I hit the ignition and started to drive off as the sound of a gun went off. Another shot and the rear window was shattered. The rubber of the tyres screamed in agony as I raced off.
When we were safely away from the scene I joked that it was a close call. Silence. Looking up from the road I saw the lifeless bloody corpse of my employer slumped in the passenger seat. In his lap, the gun that killed him, still smoking.
Panicked, I decided to destroy the evidence. I went to an isolated storage yard I knew of. Searching his body, I found his stash. There must have been at least a days worth of drugs just in his pockets. I looked at the bag he had with him.
Slowly pulling the zip open, the sight of a large amount of cash made my heart spring from my rib cage. The bag was full of money. Full to the brim. I made a snap decision.
I took the fuel can from the boot of the car. Emptied it over the interior, the body and the outside. I had a pack of matches, lit one and threw the packet into the broken window.
The car caught light instantly as I turned my back and walked away to a new life somewhere else.