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Guest Post from B.R. Stateham - a writer you should read

A Different Kind of Hero

I write a short story series about an atypical hit man. Atypical in that he does things you least expect from a professional killer. And it is this unexpected, unanticipated quirk in the man's personality which I want to discuss briefly. Specifically I want to discuss three stories I am particularly fond of.

In particular, the three stories found in the Call Me Smitty; Something Deadly The hitman calls himself Smitty. He has eyes as dark as the center point of a black hole. He moves through the night like a sulking nightmare. And when he strikes . . . oh, mama! But the point is this; is Smitty just a hit man? Or is he something else?

'Heroes' come in all sizes, shapes and disguises. As an aficionado of the hard boiled/noir story we all are looking for that certain character, that certain individual that captures our attention and holds it permanently. Smitty does that. And the three stories in the series installment pictured here is an excellent set of examples to substantiate my claims. Let me briefly describe each:

In the opening story entitled Something Deadly a hood decides to wipe out a cop and his entire
family. Kill them all while the family sleeps in their own beds. Smitty is informed of this coming deed from a friend. The 'friend' is a fellow hood who worries about what the reaction from the police will be if one of their own and his family is wiped out in such a brutal fashion.

Smitty decides to intervene. So picture a black, moonless night. Picture a house in suburbia littered with children's toys and the comfort of a house filled with love. Picture a madman in the middle of the house with a fireman's axe in his hand. Picture the madman about to enter one of the children's bedrooms. Picture Smitty coming between the madman and the slumbering child. A herculean struggle of bulging muscles and soft grunts between madman and killer. And all through this a small child sucking his thumb and dragging behind him his teddy bear watches the silent struggles while standing in the hallway.

In Goodbye, David Smitty appears miraculously and plucks a young mother and her tiny children off
of a dark street corner in a driving rain. The mother is terrified. Her husband is planning to kill her. She is fleeing from his murderous intent--but she is young. Frightened. With no one to turn to.

But Smitty finds them. Smitty whisks them off to safety---and, in the end, Smitty settles the issue with the
woman's husband in a fashion that can only be something Smitty would do.

In I'll Take Care Of It Smitty is hired by a mob boss to kill a cop and his family. Yes, it is a variation of the first story. But uniquely different. Smitty says he'll 'take care of it.' He knows the mob boss doesn't
believe him and sends a second group of killers out to do the job--and get rid of Smitty in the process. What happens next is typically Smitty.

I am very proud of these stories. Especially the first one. The first one shows a range and depth of emotional responses rarely seen in these kind of stories. The same thing can be said with the second story. And the third . . . . in fact, in all of Smitty stories.

Smitty is a different kind of critter. He deserves to find fans who enjoy rooting for a different kind of hero.

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