Nagler 5: Who are the traitors?

A deep, generational conspiracy runs through the first four Frank Nagler Mysteries.

In the upcoming DRAGONY RISING, the conspiracy is full-blown and growing.

Can it be stopped? Who are the traitors?

“Bill Weston was nervous. This was not going according to plan.

It was only nine a.m. and he had sweated through his good dress shirt and suit. The ceremony was scheduled for noon. The streets were filled. Good I told my family to stay home.

The meeting the night before when the transfer of power had been planned went so badly the council only managed to appoint him as  acting mayor. Article 256-2006 never was raised for a vote. McSalley said not to worry because as acting mayor Weston could declare by emergency decree that the article was in effect.

The small council room last night had vibrated with the loud anger of the crowd, Weston thought as he sat in the mayor’s seat at the center of the dais alone in the council chambers. A day later he could still feel the rage. The shouting had started before the meeting was called to order and he could not stop it. This was the seat he had wanted all that time; craved it, lusted for it and the power that Article 256-2006 bestowed on him – On him, him alone. He would choose his successor, purge the disloyal, exercise the absolute authority to make of Ironton what he wanted, no longer Bill Weston, faceless accountant, party loyalist, but Bill Weston deal maker, Bill Weston king maker.

Bill Weston, king.

It was all he had ever wanted.

But the crowd last night would not shut up. They roared at him. He pounded the gavel and they roared more loudly. The signs! Kill the Dragony. Fight for Ironton. And the chants: “No more Dragons! No more Dragons!”

Weston tried to clear to room, ordered the police to clear the room, but the crowd filled every seat and the aisles, and were god knows how many deep in the hallways; surrounded he was. Trapped.  The police did not respond. They were ordered to respond and they stood against the wall, hands folded at their waists glaring at him. Didn’t Dixon hand pick them? Our guys, our cops? Clear the room, damn it. As acting mayor I order you to clear the room. They turned their backs; some officers even walked away – to cheers!

Now sitting alone, the rising sounds of a gathering crowd in the streets outside city hall penetrated the walls, pushed aside the silence. Weston cursed that video that popped up on the Internet.  They called me traitor. “Kill the traitor,” they yelled. “Traitor.” “Traitor.” “Traitor.”

It was that fucking video. There was McSalley practically anointing me ruler of Ironton. My baby daughter asked me what it meant. But my teen-age son sat across the table this morning with those dark threatening eyes.

Weston sat back in the wide, thick chair, closed his eyes, and took several deep, settling breaths.

“Fuck ‘em all,” he said.  “The brotherhood is with me. It will be rough at the start, but they will adjust. They have no choice. This is a new day. The Dragony rising.”

He smiled against the sounds of chaos rising outside the chamber’s thick windows.”

To see how Detective Frank Nagler had prepared to battle the Dragony conspiracy, dive into the other four Frank Nagler Mysteries: THE SWAMPS OF JERSEY; A GAME CALLED DEAD; THE WEIGHT OF LIVING; and THE RED HAND.

Coming December: The audiobook version of A GAME CALLED DEAD, read by  Dane Petersen.

Find the Frank Nagler mysteries at:

About michaelstephendaigle

I have been writing most of my life. I am the author of the award-winning Frank Nagler Mystery series. "The Swamps of Jersey (2014); "A Game Called Dead" (2016) -- a Runner-Up in the 2016 Shelf Unbound Indie Author Contest; and "The Weight of Living" (2017) -- First Place winner for Mysteries in the Royal Dragonfly Book Awards Contest.
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