The Lost Pilot: Hammer and Edge
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By Chris Wood
Code 554 meant what it always meant: There was work to be done. Dart Hammer and Nathan Edge were leaning against their 1987 Chevy Citation, finishing a box a Crispy Creams, when the crackle of the police band radio called them from an otherwise casual Friday afternoon. Hammer licked the frosty icing from his fingers and leaned in through the passenger window of the vehicle to answer the call.
“Hammer, go,” the six foot tall, 200 pound Detective for the Voorhees, New Jersey Police Department, said.
“Dart, Dart we have a situation that you and Nathan need to handle right away, over.”
“Ms. Periwinkle? Is that you on the line?”
“Yes, Dart. I’m taking over for Lance while he’s at the free clinic getting a check up. But we don’t have time for that now…It’s Dr. Fugit Von Horseapple. He’s, he’s escaped!” Ms. Periwinkle shrieked.
“Von Horseapple?” Dart gasped.
At this, Edge leapt up from the orange colored car. "Von Horseapple," Edge mouthed to his partner of seven years. Dart nodded.
“Ms. Periwinkle, where was Von Horseapple last seen?” Dart questioned.
“Is that Periwinkle on the line?” Edge excitedly screamed. He reached for the CB radio receiver Dart was holding.
“What, what are you doing?” Dart asked, yanking the receiver back out of Edge’s reach.
“I wanna talk to her. Com’on!” Edge yelped, like a puppy at the heels of its owner.
“Dude, get a hold of yourself. You’re a fifth year Sergeant in the Voorhees Police Department…Act like it!” Dart pushed his partner of a slightly smaller stature back and clicked the call button of the receiver. “Ms. Periwinkle. Can we get an L.K.W.A on Von Horseapple?”
“Um, what?” Perriwinkle questioned.
“An L.K.W.A…Oh for Christ’s sake! A ‘last known whereabouts.’” Dart disappointedly sighed into the receiver.
“Yea, um, I’m pretty sure that is not an acceptable acronym. Please stop making them up, Dart.” Periwinkle scolded. “He was last seen on Fourth Street. A witness said he hijacked a Good Humor ice cream truck and was headed north.”
“T.R.P.M.O.” Dart said to his partner, Edge.
“Yea, this really pisses me off too! I love Good Humor!” Edge scowled. “Oh, tell Periwinkle I say, ‘Hi.’” Edge added. “She’s so hot!”
“She’s 74 years old, married and had her ovaries removed last year. Get a grip. Have you been sniffing glue again?” Dart said, looking down on his perverted partner.
“Oh, there’s one more thing…Von Horseapple has the ‘X-9 Nerve Gas.’ Be careful boys.” Periwinkle warned. The receiver buzzed for a moment and then went dead.
“Okay, partner. Ready?” Dart asked.
“Um, yea…but,” Edge hesitated.
“What is it?”
“Well, if we’re going to go after Von Horseapple then I’ll probably need my gun, right?”
“You bet your ass you will! He’s got the ‘X-9 Nerve Gas.’”
“Okay, then we have to stop by my house cause I didn’t bring my gun today”
“What!!” Dart yelled, flailing his arms in the air. “This is serious, not like the time you forget to wear pants to work, or the time you arrested a cat for J-walking…”
“I know, but look, the gun is just so heavy and I really haven’t cleaned it, and, also, I ran out of bullets two weeks ago. So it kinda makes the gun useless…” Edge trailed off.
“Wait, but you were backing me up on that warehouse raid last Wednesday. You said you couldn’t get a clear shot, but you really just had no ammo, didn’t you!” Dart was furious.
“Look, that guy only grazed you. It was a flesh wound, nothing more…”
“Just get in the car.” Dart finally said.
“It’s no big deal, I just live a few blocks from here.” Edge tried to reason.
“It was not a flesh wound, okay! I only have nine and a half fingers thanks to you! My girlfriend called me 'stubby' last night…” Dart opened the driver’s side door and hopped in.
The Chevy Citation puttered from the 7-11 parking lot and onto Main Street. Moments later a Good Humor truck pulled in. A tall man wearing a cape descended from the automobile. He was holding a canister with a scull and crossbones on it. He entered the 7-11….
Next week on ‘Hammer and Edge’:
Dart tries to find a cure for an indescribably painful rash and Edge visits the podiatrist.