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Black Lens: Part XXIII

Story by Ken Bruen and Russell Ackerman

Ken Bruen is one of the most celebrated crime novelists of our time.

Black Lens is his most secret project.

Read on as the unveiling continues.

Every Wednesday on Mulholland Books.

With art by Jonathan Santlofer.

Fade in…

Read Part 1, Part 2Part 3Part 4Part 5Part 6Part 7Part 8Part 9Part 10Part 11,Part 12, Part 13Part 14, Part 15, Part 16, Part 17, Part 18, Part 19 Part 20, Part 21 and Part 22.





The final arrangements for The Wolf were coming into place.

They even had a rehearsal, yah fooking believe it?

Right down to a cell resembling Ransom’s and some lame dead ass actor playing him.

Went through the motions, The Wolf doing the gig with the psycho and he had to admit, the actor was good, didn’t look like the killer but sure had his moves and the megalomania, and what do you know, The Wolf got into it, began to get the rush.

His cameraman behind him, a silent Scot, and got one of those who didn’t have verbal rabies, you thanked some Celtic God.

Winding down, the Final Act, The Wolf moves to the camera, bends down and takes the blade from the side, turns to Ransom and in one fluid movement ( yeah, they were sure counting on that fluidity) guts the piece of shit.

The Wolf got so into it Benedict had to pull him off, saying drily

‘Save the goddamn method for the real deal.’

The Wolf was breathing heavily, his heart doing its own River dance, he gasped

‘Romanski, he knows, right, I mean he appreciates what it is we’re putting on the line here?’

Benedict gave him a long appraising stare, then uttered, real slow




The Wolf didn’t like being condescended to and especially by this pumped up faggot, he snarled

‘The fuck does that mean?’

Was the gobshite smiling?





The Wolf thought

‘You need you know just one thing as swipe, I don’t forget.. ever.’

The actor glared at him and enough, The wolf asked

‘Yeah, you got a problem?’

No, least not any more.



It was only when the Wolf got back to the new apartment they’d provided, in The East Village, that he realized, in his frenzy, with the sheer rush of the enactment, that


He’d never asked about the escape?




They wouldn’t.

Would they?

He grabbed his cell, time to take out some insurance.


Ken Bruen has been a finalist for the Edgar and Anthony Awards, and has won a Macavity Award, a Barry Award, and two Shamus Awards for the Jack Taylor series. He lives in Galway, Ireland. Learn more at

Russell Ackerman is Guillermo del Toro’s Development Executive. He is currently working on the film MAMA to be directed by Andy Muschietti, DROOD based on Dan Simmons’ novel of the same name, adapted by Brian Helgeland, and MIDNIGHT DELIVERY written by Neil Cross, all set up at Universal Pictures. He lives in Los Angeles.