by Richard LaPlante
Charlie Wolf is an undercover cop assigned to infiltrate the Sons of Fire motorcycle club, suspected of manufacturing and distributing methamphetamine up and down the East Coast. Charlie’s been undercover for a long time—long enough to have broken the two cardinal rules of his work. He’s forged a strong friendship with Ray Sasso, president of the Sons of Fire. And he’s become addicted to meth.
A near-fatal mistake during the attempted bust by the cops leaves a bullet lodged in the right temporal lobe of Charlie’s brain. Operating to remove it would likely kill Charlie. Living with it will change him forever.
Two men linked by a tangle of lies and twisted loyalties. Two men who could not be more different—or more the same. When they meet again, for one of them it will be the Last Day.
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About the Author
Richard LaPlante is the author of the popular Fogarty-Tanaka series of crime fiction novels as well as three memoirs. Last Day is his first paranormal thriller and explores his longtime interest in human consciousness and the Near Death Experience. A musician and lifelong student of martial arts, Richard lives with his two sons in the sunny mountains of Ojai, CA and is a founding director of an independent publishing company, Escargot Books, where he blogs regularly.
Currently, Richard is also working on Hog Fever, an Ear Movie — a movie without pictures — based upon his motorcycle memoir Hog Fever and starring Academy Award nominee Terence Stamp, produced by Grammy award winner Greg Penny and directed by British rock icon Kevin Godley.
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their demise, Charlie Wolf knows. He has known for a long
time. It’s not a question of when, because when is three
o’clock this afternoon, on the third day of July; the question
is how, and it’s eating him alive.
I know this because I am Charlie Wolf, at least for a while.
A long way from here my wife and daughter are
awakening to the smell of the sea, listening to waves
crashing against the shore as the breeze rustles the
heavy cotton curtains of their windows.
They are waking up in a different world.
My daughter’s name is Jade. I remember the day
she was born, at six o’clock in the morning, on a humid
Fourth of July. She arrived after twelve hours of labor,
headfirst, face up, with two black eyes and a mop of
red hair. Swollen and pink with full, fat lips and the most
perfect hands I had ever seen. She was tiny, less than
six pounds, and when I touched her, as she lay naked
beneath the heat lamp, I could hardly see through the
tears in my eyes. Nothing I had ever known had prepared
me for that feeling. She was my flesh and blood, a part of
She’ll be three years old tomorrow, and I’m
not even sure what she looks like. I haven’t seen her in
eighteen months, not even a photograph. The last time I
had a conversation with Carolyn, my wife, she told me
that Jade’s hair, which had turned from red to blond, was
now nearly white, and that her eyes were green. Green?
But they were deep blue last time I saw her. All babies
have blue eyes, my wife explained; a child’s eyes can
change color till the child is three years old. Jade’s little
girl now, not a baby anymore. That really hit hard,
connecting with a part of me that I had tried to shut down,
leaving me open and vulnerable, desperate for more
contact. Demanding it. Jade was growing up, away from
me. I needed answers, like does she still remember who
her daddy is? But my supply of quarters had run out. The
next time I called was three weeks later, at two o’clock in
the morning. I started asking the same questions,
demanding the same answers, getting frustrated and
angry. That’s when Carolyn broke down and sobbed. It
was the first time it had happened. She’s a strong person,
and very practical, but it finally got to her, just what I was
doing and the effect it was having on our lives, and on
our child. After that, which was two months ago, I decided
not to call anymore, not till it was over.
Wait till Charlie Wolf was dead.
Then it really got tough. Night after night, lying
awake, staring at the ceiling, thinking of Carolyn, as if by
thinking hard enough I could make her materialize from
the cracked yellow plaster. Trying to create the details of
her face, imagining her eyes, soft and blue, her mouth
smiling, her right front tooth chipped, making her look like
a naughty kid, her dark hair hanging loose and stringy,
as if she’d just come out of the sea. Then her body, longlegged and full-hipped, the soft skin of her neck, her
perfume smelling like lemon grass, like summer.
What if she really couldn’t take any more? There
were plenty of men on the island who would offer
consolation. What if she was sleeping with one of them?
I imagined her in bed with someone else, doing the things
we used to do, whispering and sighing. I couldn’t turn off
I was losing everything that mattered.
That’s when I got up and took my gun out from
underneath the mattress and sat on the edge of the bed,
staring down the black hole into the barrel. Ordering my
mind to stop making me crazy. Threatening to shoot, like
my body was one person, my mind another. Stop it, I
ordered. Stop it. But it wouldn’t stop, and I couldn’t shoot.
Because if I did, I’d never see them again, my wife and
my daughter, the two things I had to live for.
©Richard La Plante