BOOK DETAILS

No Time To Kill

No Time To Kill

by Victor Alvarez

ASIN: B07BD45D61

Publisher Victor Alvarez

Published in Mystery & Thrillers/Mystery, Literature & Fiction/Contemporary, Mystery & Thrillers, Literature & Fiction

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Book Description

🔜 P R E O R D E R 🔜

In ‘No Time to Kill,’ Victor Alvarez tells of his true-action packed, fast paced adventurous life that of a Puerto Rican bounty hunter out after several hardened and dangerous bail jumpers. Collected in the book and lavishly illustrated, are 6 stories that are shudder-inducing adventures of car chases, gun-fights, fist-fights, knife wielding attackers and hand-to-hand combat with both male and female bail jumpers.

Sample Chapter

Mark Twain once wrote, “The two most important days in your life are the day you were born, and the day you find out why.” I fully realized my purpose the day I became an Arizona bounty hunter. It was as if my experiences on both sides of the law suddenly made sense.

I have always lived on the edge of violence. Whether it was gangbanging in the slums of New York City's Spanish Harlem, to fighting in the Vietnam War, or chasing fugitives as an Arizona bounty hunter, I knew that at any given time, I stood to lose life and limb. It was a gamble I embraced, sometimes out of survival, sometimes out of patriotism and sometimes for the sheer adrenalin rush.

They say life is just a series of choices. Well I've made some good choices, and some not so good choices; some I'm still paying for and a few I've come to appreciate. Take for instance my gang days in New York City.

The gang life taught me two things; camaraderie and the ability to fight. Not just to fight, but to throw caution to the wind and not show fear in the face of danger. The US Army taught me more than just those qualities. They also taught me how to kill in various ways - techniques that were born of battle. I was taught to lose my inhibitions and fears. They motivated me to carry out mission orders no matter the cost - mission first and utmost! But the most important lesson I learned was to always look after your buddy, or the person next to you. In a ‘fire-fight,’ he could be the one that may save your life, or you his.

Survival was always important too. Staying alive and getting back to my family after a hunt was the tie that binds. I earned my past, and it’s one thing that can never be taken from me. Mind you, I was neither saint nor a fool, but there comes a time in everyone's life when you have to take life as it was given to you and run with it.

So this was me, running with it.

Victor Manuel Alvarez San Antonio, Texas September, 2016

Continuing the Adventures of “The Huntsman, An Arizona Bounty Hunter. . .”

“No Time to Kill,” is the second book chronicling the adventures and life of Victor Alvarez, which began with “The Huntsman – Actual Stories of an Arizona Bounty Hunter.”

We pick up where we left off, as the Huntsman is giving chase to a Mexican drug enforcer through the dark empty highway of Black Canyon City, Arizona. And the hunt begins . . .

PROLOGUE

The Chase

May 1987, Black Canyon City, Arizona

I was chasing a silver ’72 Chevy Monte Carlo south on the Arizona Veterans Highway or I-17 as it was commonly known, and behind the wheel of my newly modified ’82 Chrysler LeBaron, as I sped through the darkness and my jumper’s taillights grew closer and closer. Kenny Loggins’ Highway to the Danger Zone played from the car’s radio as I kept my eyes on the road and my hands on the wheel.

I was tired, hungry and needed to catch this jumper. It was oven hot, and although it was after 3:00 a.m., heat still wafted from the roadway in front my headlights, thanks to the hot spell that still gripped Arizona.

I leaned slightly forward and adjusted the louvers on the car's air conditioner, so that I could get the cool air on my face. That position helped a lot and it brought a small smile to my lips.

The Bradshaw Mountains rose up to the right of the roadway in an area made famous when gold and silver was discovered there in the early 1800s. Those same mountains were later home to Apache Indians as they fought to protect their land and keep white settlers out. A few of the old settler homes and towns still stood and provided the backdrop for the car chase that roared along the mountainous periphery.

My newly suped-up 305cc engine and manual four-speed transmission easily pushed me closer to the fleeing Chevy. I didn’t want to lose the jumper, but I didn’t want to spook him either. I’d been in this situation before, and I knew things could take a turn for the worst in an instant. Dolores had told me to be careful and come home to her when she’d kissed me goodbye. For some reason, my wife had always told me I was handsome, though I didn’t see it. Even with the scars on my face and hands, Dolores still saw me as a good-looking guy, even after all our years together.

My years as a Spanish Harlem barrio gang member saw lots of fights, and sometimes a blade or two got in the way. Years later, it would be bullets that got in my way during two combat tours in Vietnam. While I was highly trained in hand-to-hand combat, I hoped I wouldn’t have to bust a sweat – or bust a move – on the jumper in the Chevy that night. But I was ready nonetheless.

With 21 years of military service under my belt, I’d fought for my country and was a proponent of our criminal justice system. No bail jumper was going to avoid his day in court if I had anything to do with it. But the clock was ticking. I had to have the jumper back in Tucson in less than nine hours, by noon that same day, or else I’d forfeit my 10-percent fee, which in this case, was four thousand dollars. Triple ‘A’ Bail Bonds had hired me to find their jumper, who had disappeared without a trace, so they also stood to lose a lot of money and property too if the jumper wasn’t brought in.

As I kept the Chevy in sight, I considered what I’d learned about him. I’d cut my teeth on finding some of the most elusive jumpers, and I’d always been successful because I took the time to learn all I could about them. Just like a hunter learns about his prey, their habits and their lifestyles. Fred Luna at Triple ‘A’ Bail Bonds had told me plenty about the man I pursued. His name was Jose Luis Aguilar, but best known as ‘The Destroyer,’ who worked for “The Locos,” a crazy Mexican gang in South Tucson that boasted about 140 members. The membership fluctuated on any given day, depending on what The Locos had been up to, how many members were killed, and how many new members had been initiated into the crude gang known for its maniacal acts.

‘The Destroyer’ had been arrested on an attempted murder charge; but after posting bail, compliments of Triple 'A' Bonds, he went FTA (failed to appear) for his court date. My DEA contacts had also told me that the Mexican hood was suspected of having iced a couple of his gang’s competitors who’d tried to muscle in on The Locos’ operations. That’s just how things were done with gangs, simply the cost of doing business. But it was this mindset that made my job even more dangerous since most of my jumpers had seen death many times and would stop at nothing to avoid jail time. Most of them had nothing to lose as they fled the law. They knew it; and I knew it too.

With a rap sheet as long as my arm, Jose Luis Aguilar had been in trouble since he was a kid, with arrests for aggravated assault, grand theft auto, sale and possession of crack cocaine, and now his newest pending indictments for attempted murder and attempted armed robbery. He was looking at twenty- to-life and possibly deportation; and he had no intention of seeing the inside of a prison cell.

Although I’d expected it might be fruitless, I had gone to see Aguilar’s sister at the beginning of my manhunt.

“Where’s your brother, Mary?” I asked through the cracked front door.

Without making eye contact she said, “No idea. I haven’t seen him.”

I knew Aguilar had once gone after a guy who’d attempted to rape his sister. This meant she ‘owed him;’ and besides that, in Mexican culture, you just don’t mess with family. Everybody knows that can end dismally.

“Tell me the truth, Mary,” I coaxed, using my best ‘nice guy voice.’

“I am. I haven’t seen Jose. Honest.”

As she closed the door, I heard her lock it from the other side. My sixth sense told me, without doubt, that Mary had just lied to me. I knew Aguilar was inside that house, but I didn’t want his sister to get hurt if I rushed the house and took him. Collateral damage would make my job messy and besides, it wasn’t Mary’s fault that her brother was a dangerous criminal. She shouldn’t have to pay for his actions with her life.

I walked back toward my car to plan my next move.

Suddenly, a man’s voice yelled out from the doorway where Mary had just stood.

“Hey! Pinche Cabron! You ain’t takin’ ME in!”

That's when the proverbial ball fell, and hell followed!

Not knowing if he had a gun on me, I still reacted as if he did. I figured with all the history of violence Aguilar was associated with, I wasn’t about to take any chances. Besides, I knew he’d earned his nickname of ‘The Destroyer’ for a reason. Just like the old Chinese proverb says in Sun Tzu (The Art of War), “If you know your enemies and know yourself, you will not be imperiled in a hundred battles . . .” Those wise words rang true on this day, just as they had way back in the Sixth Century, BC.

With my back to the house, I flipped up the tail end of my coat and reached for my Colt holstered at the ready on my side. I drew and quickly spun around doing a 180-degree right pivot turn on my left foot as I tracked the figure at the door. With my Colt perfectly aligned on my target, as he stood in the doorway, a dark shadow silhouette against the interior light of the house, I was ready. Almost as if in slow motion, the figure raised his gun and tracked it until he stopped when it pointed straight at me.

‘Plan for the worst, but hope for the best’ had always sounded like such a sensible and cool-headed philosophy; that is until the scenario turns out for the worst! I hoped, in this moment, that the scenario would end well for me.

Aguilar got off a shot that sailed far to the right of me, as I heard the bullet whiz right past me, and almost instantly shatter in some glass somewhere behind me. I figured the bullet must have hit a windowpane in the distance. I also figured Aguilar must’ve been high on something because he had missed me by a mile.

With my ears still ringing from his errant gunshot, I tried to stay focused and to not let my anger get the best of me.

Instinctively my combat training kicked in, as I reflexively bent my knees and dropped down to the ground onto my left knee, affording the shooter as small a target as possible. I’d already had the hammer pulled back and I returned fire and let loose a shot of my own. It impacted with a loud thump on the door, just as Aguilar shut it again.

Although his shot was way off his mark, I still felt it was too damned close for comfort. Am I getting too old for this shit? I briefly wondered, but quickly let go of the thought. In the back of my mind, I knew that if I felt, for even an instant, that I was too old to be doing such work, that I would quit, and that my wife would be much happier for it.

‘Christ, get up! Get up!' I silently yelled to myself. ‘This ain’t the time for a fucking breather!’

I drew in a long, deep breath and smelled the strong odor of cordite as it wafted in the air. It was the same lingering telltale scent that I’d smelled many times before in my lifetime, it always arrives right after a bullet has been fired.

I slowly exhaled and decided to make my next move. I leapt up and ran toward the closed door and tried the knob as I stood to the side of it; but it was locked. Seconds later, I heard a car engine start up on the side of the house.

Oh Hell, NO! I thought, as I looked toward the direction of the sound.

I had a sinking feeling that things just weren’t going to turn out well. This just wasn't my day.

The car sped off, away from the house and almost without braking, turned onto the main street. I caught sight of Aguilar’s sister behind the wheel as her brother rode shotgun. I let them go, and decided not to fire into the car, since I didn’t want a stray shot to hit or even kill Mary.

I sprinted back to my car, fired it up and shoved the LeBaron’s gearshift into first. Almost in the same motion, I turned the steering wheel left, made a U-turn, and sped off after them.

Just moments later, I spotted the Monte Carlo’s taillights in the distance.

My car was fast since I’d had the engine rebuilt and modified. Still though, I wasn’t sure it was fast enough to catch up to the Chevy, but I was going to give it a try.

I knew Aguilar, with his sister beside him, had spotted me behind them as I steadily closed the gap between our cars. Did he think just because his sister was driving, that I wouldn’t fire at their car? I asked myself. No, I wouldn’t, unless she picked up a gun and fired it in my direction. If that happened, then all bets were off.

I realized now, as I trailed Aguilar’s Chevy at 90 mph, that I should’ve just knocked down the door and taken him when I’d had the chance.

Right into the danger zone . . . Kenny Loggins sang from my radio as I shook my head and focused on Aguilar’s taillights that kept getting closer.

The chase was on as I bore down on the taillights ahead of me. As I rounded a curve, about a car’s length behind Aguilar and his sister, my right mirror suddenly exploded! Either he was a good shot, or just lucky; either way, I chucked it up to luck. No one was that good, shooting behind him and from a speeding car; anyway not someone the likes of Aguilar, a common street hood. He might be just all juiced-up, I figured - running on adrenaline.

The scene wasn’t a Hollywood production though; it was for real as we raced through the empty desert landscape, leaving trails of dust in our wake. There were neither highway lights nor traffic on the lonely endless strip of highway; it was just the two of them and me.

The Chevy fast approached the Old Black Canyon Highway, a two-lane road. I figured they would shoot through it and stay on Highway-17. It surprised me when they didn’t do that. Red brake lights lit up as the Chevy briefly slowed and then veered off onto the exit ramp, with me still about two car lengths behind.

Mary approached the intersection, but didn’t slow down as she sped through a stop sign, clearly trying to put some distance between us. Seconds later, I also blew through the intersection, ignoring the stop sign too, careful not to lose even precious seconds. I put the pedal to the metal, as my car shot ahead, leaving a plume of white smoke behind me in the still night.

What happened next took just a few seconds, but there was no way I was going to let them get away from me. Neck and neck with the Chevy, I glanced at my speedometer as we raced along at over 90mph. The speed was just about right for what I had in mind.

In my peripheral, as I raced alongside their car, I saw Aguilar roll down his side window. I was sure he’d take a shot at me. And just as he stuck his arm out of the window, gun in hand, I jerked my steering wheel hard to the left and kept my foot hard on the gas pedal, forcing the Chevy off the roadway before he could get off a shot.

There was no shoulder of the road to speak of, just tall grassy areas as the Chevy tore through it. Mary somehow regained control of the car as it careened back onto the highway, jerking and rocking as she fought to steer it. By then, I was within spitting distance of the Chevy’s rear end.

I thought about what I had to do next; hell, I’d done it once or twice before. Well, practice makes perfect, and what a better time to get my practice in, I thought, as I considered doing a pit maneuver, as it’s referred to in law enforcement. The tactic is a precision immobilization technique - or my own personal abbreviation of it, anyway. In the military police, we called this technique a takeout, which is sort of self-explanatory.

With my hands tightly gripping the steering wheel, I rammed the Chevy hard against its left side bumper. This time, the technique’s outcome was totally different. The car was completely out of control, as it swerved to the right, giving me a clear view of its side.

I saw my chance and too quick advantage. I accelerated hard on the gas pedal and rammed the Chevy’s passenger side door, then reduced my speed, since I didn’t want the Chevy to flip over on its side. I kept my speed to about 20mph as I pushed Aguilar’s car clear across the road, and forced it into a clump of trees on the other side of the highway.

Suddenly, from the Chevy’s driver’s side, glass shattered; and then, with a loud thunderous clap and squelching boom of metal, the Chevy hit a tree hard and came to a hard stop. It was now sandwiched between the tree and the front of my car.

As the dust settled, all was quiet and still. I shifted my car into reverse and backed off a couple of feet. After I’d killed the engine, I climbed out of my LeBaron as my car’s headlights illuminated the Chevy’s side. In one motion, I pulled out my Colt, cocked back the hammer on a live round, and took a combat stance as I held my weapon in both hands, shoulders slightly turned and legs shoulder width apart. With my gun pointed at the Chevy’s passenger door, I waited to see what Aguilar would do next.

There was no movement from inside their car, just moans and groans. With my knees slightly bent and my Colt still held in front of me, I slowly took three steps toward the Chevy and then cautiously stopped. I watched as Aguilar regained consciousness and started pushing with his shoulders against the passenger door, groaning with the effort, as he attempted to open the door that was twisted and wedged from the impact.

Wordless and dazed, Aguilar stared at me as I approached, and then I saw his eyes suddenly glaze over. Since I didn’t see a weapon, I holstered my Colt and walked closer to the Chevy.

After several tries, I forcefully opened the mangled door, then grabbed Aguilar and pulled him out of the car by his shoulders.

As I held his right arm, I shoved him to the ground and then bent his right arm up behind his back. I straddled him and then pushed him down at the back of his neck with my right knee, as I pulled out a set of cuffs. I got his left arm behind him and finished cuffing him. With my right knee still on his neck, and Aguilar still dazed, confused and disoriented he wasn’t about to give me any resistance. All the fight had been knocked out of him.

As blood dripped from a wound on the side of his head and still more blood ran from his mouth, reality started to sink in as he fought to focus. He seemed to be gathering his senses.

“Maria!” he cried.

His own health seemed only an afterthought to the hardened criminal, as Aguilar questioned his sister's condition. You should’ve thought of that before you put her in the car with you! I thought.

I went over and looked into the wrecked car that rested against the tree. Mary was motionless, slumped over the steering wheel, so I went back to finish with Aguilar.

I pulled him by his handcuffed arms up onto his feet and then shoved him toward my car. He must’ve twisted his ankle, because he limped along as blood continued to drip from his head and his mouth.

With one hand, I opened the right back passenger door, and with the other, I shoved him inside. Once he was safely seated, I reached in and cuffed him to the iron center post I’d installed for just such a purpose. He wasn’t going anywhere, except back to jail, where he belonged.

Once again he cried out for his sister.

“Maria! Estas bien? Are you okay?"

I’ve always prided myself in trying to stay one step ahead of my opponents. It’s something I’ve learned, not just in combat, or in my martial arts training, but even in playing chess. Still though, even I didn’t see or sense what would happen next.

Just as I shut the car door on Aguilar, I heard shuffling sounds behind me. Before I could even turn around, I heard Mary crying, yelling and pleading.

“Mister, let my brother go!” she said.

Ever so slowly, I slid my right hand up to the comforting butt of my Colt that waited faithfully at the ready. Not taking any chances, I turned around and faced Mary head-on. She stood beside the open passenger door of the Chevy holding a gun in both her hands. Mary barely pointed the gun in my direction though, as it canted more toward the ground than at me. Blood ran from her forehead and down into her eyes from a gash above her eye. I presumed she’d sustained the injury when she’d struck the steering wheel; and I could tell the blood in her eyes was obscuring her field of vision.

Madre De Dios! Just great! I thought. Can this possibly get any worse?

I was about to find out.

If it were anyone else beside Mary, I would have already been shot in the back without hesitation or even a second thought. No doubt about it, someone was definitely looking out for me in that moment.

I looked straight at her.

“I’m not going to do that, Mary. So, drop the gun or I’ll pull this trigger and shoot you dead.”

Aguilar yelled and shouted at his sister from the backseat of my car. He cried out in Spanish. “Maria, he’ll kill you. Do what he says!”

She said, “He . . . won’t shoot me.”

But something in her voice sounded as if she wasn’t all that sure.

As I let her lock eyes with mine, I gave her a cold hard look.

I said, "Look at me very closely. Are you willing to bet your life on it?”

Continues...

Excerpted from "No Time To Kill" by Victor Alvarez. Copyright © 2018 by Victor Alvarez. Excerpted by permission. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher. Excerpts are provided solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
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Author Profile

Victor Alvarez

Victor Alvarez

Victor Manuel Alvarez was born in Santurce, Puerto Rico, and moved to New York City when he was nine years old with his older brother and his mother. It was in New York that his father worked as a Merchant Marine being away from the family 10 months out of the year, while his mother took care of the family. At the age of 18 he decided to join the New York City Police Department, but as fortune would have it, he was ultimately drafted into the U.S. Army. He completed his boot camp training at Fort Dix, New Jersey. After that it was Airborne then Ranger schools and later jungle warfare school in the Republic of Panama. His military awards range from; Jump Wings, Vietnam Cross of Gallantry, two awards of the Purple Heart, Air Medal, and Army Commendation Medal, Army Achievement medal, among other numerous awards. His military specialty was as a Military Policeman and served as an Army Criminal Investigator (CID Agent).

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