A couple of days later Hardy got out of the hospital. As soon as he got to the office Amos
showed him the machete he retrieved from the evidence room. It was a machete from Brazil.
The Killer himself was a recent indigent who had come to America from Brazil as part of a
wrestling promotion. As soon as the wrestling promoter got tired of his ranting and ravings he
had canceled his contract and was in the process of sending him back to Rio when he
pulled a Waldo and disappeared. The murder spree started soon after.
The stale hot air took a lot to get used to. The Humvee sped across the desert terrain
with the men inside hoping that they would not become a statistic. Joe Villa was the navigator of
the Humvee. Above his head dangled the part of the necklace with Amy’s picture in it. The
men inside the Hummer were young and rather inexperienced believing in the notion that the
American army was so superior that they would be safe. They sat in their seats alert for
a buried mine that could send them into the column of dead or wounded.
Joe Villa was daydreaming about Amy. They had met at the same high school but keep
their love a secret because of Amy’s desire to get into the police enforcement and his
involvement with the wrong side of the tracks. She was tutoring Joe because of his dyslexia. It
was just the cover story to explain why they were together so much. Amy was a tough tutor and
insisted on getting his grades up. Because of her efforts Joe did start to improve. Amy even
talked him into enrolling in the army as a way to get a college education paid for by his service
to his country. In an instant his thoughts were interrupted by the explosion flipping the Humvee
on its side.
Joe was unconscious on the bottom of the vehicle. Bruce Robinson the driver was hung
up above him dead and dripping blood onto his face. In the blackness of the dead zone Joe
visualized Amy and did not feel the men pulling him from the wreck. He became conscious in
the hospital room a few days later. The images in front of him were still out of focus. He would have been surprised because in the interim he had been flown to Mannheim, Germany.
Finally he was able to see. He was in a hospital bed and a doctor and some nurses were
talking. He moaned and their attention was to reassure him he was okay.
“So, you’ve finally decided to come back to the world, have you,” the doctor remarked.
Bewildered Joe finally remembered what had happened before, “I remember the
Hummer, what happened?”
I am going to go slow because you really were pretty banged up, your left arm was pretty bruised
up, and you had a pretty bad concussion and a lot of scrapes and bruises. But I think you will do
fine with time.” Then he was out again.
He woke a week later and had been shipped back to his home town to a hospital in Fort
Lauder dale. The idea was to be close to his family. Unfortunately once in the hospital the staff
could not find anyone to contact. All of the information on his records was either incorrect or
fabricated. Finally he drifted back to consciousness.
“How long have I been out?”
“Over a week. The army brought you back to the states after a stop over in Germany.”
the Doctor informed him.
“Where am I?”
“Your at the army facility in Tampa. We tried to get in touch with your folks but couldn’t
we do not have a forwarding address on them and we have nothing on file for a close relative.”
“ I have a girlfriend in Fort Lauder dale,”
“ Give us the phone number and we will contact.” said a nurse.
“Get me a phone and I will do it myself,” Joe said belligerent
“I think it would be best if we break the news to her and go slowly at first.”
“Why, what is the problem? What are you not telling me?” his voice was getting agitated.
The doctor paused and then moved a chair near Joe. “You have the right to know and I
do not know else to say it. We did a blood test on the man who was above you and found out
that his blood was contaminated with HIV.”
“Wait a second, he bleed all over my face, oh no, you mean.” He was beside himself.
“How long does it take?” Villa queried.
“The problem is it could be a sleeper, if your blood is contaminated we will start
working on the problem, but if not, well, I said it could be a sleeper and it might come out of
hiding and hit you years later.”
At this point the nurse came into the room. “You said the girlfriend you wanted me to
call was Amy, right?” She said rather hesitantly.
“Yeah, did you reach her?”
“I am sorry, I did not put two and two together. She was in an FBI action. It was in all the papers a few days ago,” she hesitated, “and was,” she
“What the hell is the problem, tell me now or I will go nuts.” Joe became agitated and
was trying to raise up out of bed.
“She was killed in the incident.” The nurse said solemnly.
“NO! You have to be wrong,” Joe became belligerent. He jumped out of bed and tried to
get his clothes. He tore off the wires that were attached to him. He was going ballistic and acted like a crazy man
Meanwhile the doctor got on a house phone and called for help, “Stat, room 209.”
Aides rushed into the room to hold Villa down while the doctor had a syringe brought in to calm him down and shot Villa in the arm. With the shot in him he finally lapsed into sleep. The aides placed him back into bed and the nurse started to put the furniture back into place and pick up the things that fell on the floor. The electrodes were placed back onto his body so he could be monitored.
The doctor gave orders to put Joe into restraints and pondered what to do. He realized
that informing the patient he might have HIV and learning his girlfriend was dead might be too
much for Villa to take. He wondered what he needed to do for his patient. He knew counseling
was in order, but he felt that Villa could be a time bomb and no one knew what he would do
when the restraints were taken off. He never could have guessed how bad the situation would
become. The doctor decided to call the Army and ask for help. Unfortunately he was delayed by the loop of catch 22. The Army did not want the fact one of their soldiers had gotten HIV while in the service. They delayed the call by looping it from one person to another.
Sometime that might Joe awoke from the nightmares he was having and realized he
was strapped down in a gurney. He called out and an aide finally came in to make sure he was
“Hey, I got to go pee. I do not want to soil this bed.” Joe begged the aide to release him for the trip to the bathroom.
The aide thought of it and figured Joe would go on the floor and make a mess so he allowed the
trip. Just as Joe entered the bathroom he spun around and sucker punched the aide who
crumpled to the floor unconscious. Joe changed clothes with the aide, put him on a gurney and
strapped him down. He took the aides wallet for he realized his first destination was a bank
where his illegal cash money from selling drugs was in bank deposit box in Fort Lauder dale.
The aide just had enough for the taxi to the bus depot and a ticket. Upon finding out Villas’ escape the doctor followed protocol and informed the military of Joe Villa’s escape. He did not know what Joe was planning but he was now out of the loop and frankly was glad of it.
Joe was beside himself. Three weeks ago he was in Iraq and scared to death. At least he
had Amy to come back to. But a few days before his Humvee being blown up by an improvised
devise his reason for living was killed in a snafu caused by the FBI. On top of that he had HIV
which eventually sap his strength and destroy his life. The plunge to the depths of despair
unhinged him. He was not sure what to do. Upon reaching Fort Lauder dale he went to his bank
and showing his drivers license he went to the safety deposit box and emptied its contents into a
brief case he had just purchased. As he walked out of The Barnett Bank he threw out the wallet
he had stolen from the aide. He walked to a cheap hotel and took a room so he could start
planning out what to do. He paid for the room with some of the money he took out of the
briefcase. In the room he counted the dirty money. No matter what he planned he had eighty
thousand dollars to play with. He took some of that money and went to eat. He was upset but
his stomach was empty and he had go on.
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