Konan didn’t say anything in response to the General’s statement, not because of a lack of words, there was plenty he wanted to say, but because it would have led to a deeper conversation.
“Sometimes, your best course of action is to remain silent. Everyone is not worthy of your words.”
The MP from earlier waited for them in the foyer. He rose to meet them and led them to their vehicle and escorted them from the post. Lilly remained quiet; Konan focused on the road.
An hour from Fredericksburg the silence was broken by Lilly. As she stared out the window she said, “It sounded as if Blankenship was detested. Do you think the disproval of his commander led him to make the decision to be a political pawn for hire?”
“No, what people think of you doesn’t matter. Decision made using that, I guess you could call it ‘faulty logic,’ are still your decisions. He would only suffer the consequences of his own choice.”
“Yeah, but you don’t think that being vilified shaped his decision?”
“I don’t think it mattered. He knew the path would lead to this point in time. Knowing that, he still chose to walk it.”
Lilly looked at Konan. ‘How could he be so calloused? We both heard the same thing.’ There was one thing Lilly was certain of as she continued her stare into the inky blackness of night, it would not pay to get on Konan’s bad side.
They went back to being silent until Lilly’s phone rang. Konan kept his eyes on the road. His mind was trapped within the General’s praise of his father. “He was a good soldier…” It irked Konan that people thought of his dad as a ‘good’ man.’ “He was a lousy father to me, and a horrible boyfriend to my mother. The only thing he excelled at was being a criminal. Even then, he succumbed to the temptation of killing an entire family to secure his own power. He is not a good man.”
Lilly hung up. The internal struggle she witnessed play out on Konan’s face bothered her. She touched his arm.
“That was dispatch. Paddy has tried to reach you several times, we should go by there.”
Konan nodded and aimed his truck toward O’Shea’s.
When Konan and Lilly walked into the pub, the lights were dimmed. Paddy stood behind the bar wiping down mugs. He nodded at them and waved them to a couple of stools in front of him. A homely looking woman sat across the bar and watched them approach.
Konan sat down and asked for a Zero Doctor Pepper. Lilly asked for water. Paddy placed their drinks down and gave Konan a grin.
“So, I heard from your dad.”
Paddy turned and waved the woman over. She stepped gingerly down from the stool and made her way over to them.
“This is Esther. She is your father’s attorney and your cousin.” Esther extended her hand to Konan. He shook her hand, and helped her onto the stool.
“Thank you, Thermopolis.”
“You’re welcome.” Konan stared at Paddy and shook his head.
“What does this have to do with what he said,” Konan asked. Paddy stuck a stogie in his mouth and bit down.
“Your father wants a favor before he does one for you.”
“Hold your horses, kid.” It wasn’t Paddy but Esther that spoke. Konan turned and faced her. She held a stogie betwixt her fingers and stared at him.
“If you want the precise location of William Blankenship, you should do this favor.”
“What is the favor,” Lilly asked. Konan glared at Esther and remained silent.
“Your father would like you to visit him tomorrow. He would only give the information to you in person.”
“Is that it,” Konan snarled. Esther and Paddy nodded.
“That’s it. Michael said to show up at 11.”
Konan turned and walked away without a word. Lilly thanked them and rushed out after her partner. ‘The longer Blankenship is out there, the more damage he could do. We’ve got to make this happen.”It had started to rain, and Lilly was caught in the downpour. She rushed to the truck. Konan was already inside it with the engine running.
“Thanks for leaving me in there,” she said hotly.
“No, you’re not. You got angry and stormed out. You’re going to visit your father tomorrow.”
“No, I am not…”
“Yes, you are. I’m going with you. We’ve got to stop him, Konan. If this is how we do it, then by God, that’s what we do. So, man up and deal with your crap already.”