- a novel by Dan Sullivan



Brendan Murphy learns of murder


Why publish this novel?

Authors Biography


Opening Pages
- Brendan Murphy learns of murder

Police say Downtown Eastside slayings done “execution” style

Vancouver- Four men were found dead from gunshots to the head in the notorious downtown eastside area of Vancouver late last night, police say. The men were believed to be homeless with no visible link between them. There were reports that people had witnessed black clad, “commando” type men spotted in the area at the time of the killings.

In a prepared statement, Vancouver Police Chief Mark Boudreau, said, “Between 1 and 2am last night, four men were found dead from injuries resulting from execution style shots to the head. It is believed that two or possibly more men roamed the back alleyways targeting vulnerable persons and fired at them point blank ….. The killings were done in a professional manner….We have do not know the motivation [of the killings]…. We have to gather all the information we can at this time...”

News of the crime comes on the heals of a recent gangland shooting downtown and the grisly investigation of suspected serial killer Robert Pickton’s pig farm in Port Coquitlam. Vancouver residents are left wondering what could possibly happen next.

Mayor Phillip Clark said, “We will launch a full investigation to find the culprits of this crime….

That’s all I needed to read of today’s big story. And I think I know who did this. If the police came to me I could give them a good lead. I didn’t do the crime, mind you. The worst unprovoked attack I ever made, was when I water-bombed a dumpster diver from my apartment window. Killing isn’t my thing.

No, I bet it was Jake. And I bet he’d say that the killings were political. I don’t know if you can describe him as young and idealistic. He has a message, sure, and quite obviously, he has taken “direct action.” (A phrase borrowed from the Professional Protestors of BC, when they smash up a Starbucks or Gap.) I wonder if I should report my suspicions to the police? Naw… not right now, anyway.

I have time on my hands these days. Five and a half years working for the same shitty organization and they laid me off. I hated almost every moment there. I’m sitting in the Starbucks at Robson & Thurlow in the middle of the day, sipping a coffee. A new comer or tourist coming to Vancouver, think the same thing: Does anybody work in this town? Cafes are packed during the day with young, seemingly employable people during the week. This particular Thursday, one of those people is me.

Allow me to qualify myself; I dislike the whole idea of Starbucks. Today it’s just a clean well lighted place to read the newspaper and watch the people go by. (And today’s news is very interesting! Everybody is talking about it!) While I’m on the topic, I’m wearing a sweater and a pair of pants that I bought from the Gap. I don’t have a problem with the organization, except for their lousy commercials. The sweater is black, the pants are army green. (OK, khaki.) They sell cheap clothes of reasonably good quality. Who cares if they’re made by Mexicans paid a buck a day?

But I digress….My name is Brendan Murphy. I met the murder suspect in question when I started working for the bastards who just turfed me. It was my first “real” job. My wife Kate & I moved out to Vancouver shortly before I got the position. We decided to move out here on a whim, primarily for climatic reasons. It’s the warmest place in a cold country.

Now I’m beginning to wonder what the hell I’m still doing here. My excuse used to be that I had a good job, but that’s gone. I have few friends here. One of them could be a mass murderer. My other friend Sandy, is becoming increasingly annoying. Lately, he’s been saying things like: “I want to give something back to society and make the world a better place.” What he means is beyond me. He probably learned that in the MBA program. Good bullshit to say during a job interview.

Oh ya. My arch-enemy, the son of a bitch that I’ve hated since high school, David Grady moved to Vancouver as well. Now he’s a well known social activist. People think he’s a secular saint. It infuriates me!


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