7am. Best to catch them early.
I nodded at my pistol wielding partner, Kagawa. With a short run up I launched myself at door 32, my foot disappearing into the shoddy panelling. After a brief struggle I managed to free it, and one more heavy kick smashed the door handle inwards allowing us entry. Not exactly efficient, but satisfying.
Kagawa entered first. I followed immediately afterwards, freeing my Colt, cold as the winter outside. Invariably we caught them in bed in these early hours.
Kagawa went left, opening the door gently, an elegance and class I couldn’t match. I peeled right, battering the door open, greeted by drying clothes and a computer monitor on standby. Rushing back out, Kagawa was ahead of me again, gun ready for a breakfast showdown.
The hallway carried on, covered in new soft cream carpet, a door straight ahead then the apartment branched left and right. Kagawa quickly established the door at the end of the hallway as an empty bathroom, but the light was on, windows misty, mirror fogged.
I heard something – music?. I looked at Kagawa and motioned to go left. Gun raised I walked steadily; a light was on, I could smell toast, and a radio burbled. Rounding the corner I stood still, and waved Kagawa through, stepping into the kitchen. “Drop it!” I said. The old man looked shocked. His spoon clattered off his bowl of cereal. He immediately looked across at the kid next to him.
We’d been here before. Kagawa trotted over to extract the kid to another room, picking him up under the arms as he flailed and began to cry like a little sissy, still gripping peanut butter toast. As soon as they left the kitchen I flew over in a rage, holstering my Colt, and dived over the table that shattered beneath my weight, my hands just managing to grip the throat of my target as the force of me knocked him over. Somewhere amid the spilt milk, toast and butter, we landed, knocking the wind out the old sack of shit. As soon as we hit the deck I spun him around and reached for my belt, taking the cuffs out and slapping them on with expertise, another scumbag apprehended, a small victory for Pilton.
Taking a second to reflect, breathing heavy, sitting on the old man still, for some reason I thought of the door number. Thirty two. Thirty two? Then it dawned on me, almost literally given the time. We were in the wrong apartment. 7am. I guess that can work both ways.