The trip to Larne had been uneventful and I actually slept most of the way. Wailer wandered around talking to everyone he came close too. Talking was his way of defusing his nervousness.
In Larne we were met by a sloppily dressed and unassuming man with red hair and a beard to match. He said few words and grunted most of his instructions. This made me very uncomfortable but Pete seemed to be able to pick up everything the guy was grunting and Wailer was so interested in the guy he talked non stop. The guy said his name was Paul and that’s all we needed to know. He was right but I still did not like him even though I knew that giving up as little information as possible, about yourself, would keep you alive if things went south. I wished Wailer had figured that out.
Larne was a busy seaport and we were barely noticed when landing. Paul took us to the a small hotel on the outskirts of the city. Belfast was a twenty five minute drive south with easy access. I liked this set up. Staying this far out allowed us some breathing room away from where we would be working and also put us in close proximity to our escape route. So far things looked good.
Pete went on a quick tour of Belfast and the areas that we would have to learn to navigate. I stayed behind with Wailer and took him on a quick city tour. Something I had no interest in doing but it served two purposes. First, to try and solidify an impression that we were businessmen/tourists. Second, to shut Wailer up. He needed something to do to calm him down and I needed him quiet so I could concentrate.
By the time we got back to the hotel, 5 hours later, Wailer was ready to sleep and I was the one on edge. We had not heard from Pete since he left us at the hotel.
Jimmy Bailey was born into a life of crime. His father was a hustler his entire life and Jimmy took to it naturally. He had taken the family business to levels his father would never had attempted. Jimmy was involved in every thing from drugs to gun running and now the selling of human beings.
I had dealt with him a few times before; helping to stop some of his gun running operations to known terrorists. He dealt with anyone that could pay the price of his wares. One thing that could be said about Jimmy, ‘politics did not mater’; only money did.
All his criminal enterprises were kept away from Ireland so here he was ‘Saint Jimmy’. Living a comfortable life with a wife and 3 children. He had a country estate near the Village of Glenoe and was quite the ‘Irish Country Gentleman’.
His comfortable estate life was his weakness. He felt himself untouchable in Ireland. To quote an old movie, ‘I planned on treating him a bit less cordially than he was use to in his home‘.
Pete finally returned looking tired and in desperate need of a drink. I had some beer waiting and sat down impatiently to ask a million questions After a few pulls on the beer Pete was ready to answer all of them.
“I think we can get at him in Glenoe but it is going to be dangerous. We have to put everything we have into this or walk away now”, Pete.
We both knew that there was no walking away.