Framing the Dialogue

An Ace and A Pair

“We parked in the lot, and fifteen minutes later we were sitting in a secure room, waiting for Chen Zhu to be shown in. There was a loud buzz and a clang. The door opened and two guards led in a man who, even chained hand and foot, was terrifying to behold. It wasn’t just his size, though he was tall, muscular, and agile. It was his face, the complete absence of expression and the deadness of his eyes. They communicated just one thing: he could watch an unlimited amount of suffering.”

“His eyes shifted to me, but all I could read there was that somehow, some day, he intended to kill us. I said, “Does the family know?” I gave a small laugh and spread my hands. “This is New York, in the new millennium. What’s a bit of homosexuality in the family? No big deal, right?” His face went rigid, and all the color drained out of it. This was true rage, and unleashed it must have been a truly terrifying sight. I was glad he was chained. I stared him in the eye and said, “Oh, they don’t know?” Dehan said, “You’re kidding me. Your grandfather, the head of the most powerful Triad gang in the eastern United States, does not know that his grandson is gay?” She looked at me, then back at him. “Well, what do you think would happen, Zhu, if he found out? I mean, I know that family is really important to you, and I think that a life choice as profound as this one is something he should share with the family, don’t you?”

Blake Banner’s An Ace and A Pair teams up an old-school detective, John Stone with Detective Carmen Dehan, who has trouble getting along with most everyone.  Their boss decides to assign them the cold case files to try to solve AND get them out of her hair.  Little did she know what a powder keg was about to explode when they opened a old case where a bunch of gang-bangers were murdered while they played a friendly game of poker.  Not only were they killed, but there were no signs of resistance.

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