Ecklund smiled, a white enameled wonder which looked more appropriate on a soap opera star than on a drug cop, "Actually, I'm hoping to recruit you two."
"For the DEA?" Jenny leveled her eyes at the handsome guy standing above her. She and her partner didn't exactly have stellar credentials to be wooed by the Federales.
"Just on a temporary basis," he said, "nothing permanent."
"Lawsuits," he said, "we couldn't afford to cover you and your gigantic liabilities."
Hiller chuckled, "Trust me, your lawyers would kill you if you took them on board permanently."
The smiled vanished, "Seriously, are you familiar with the Pirelli Family and their exploits in the world of Organized Crime?"
Anna snorted, "Are you kidding? They are the city's worst-kept secret. Everyone knows they run about half the city."
Ecklund nodded, "Probably more."
"The DEA had been running a massive operation to get people inside and close enough to get evidence to bring them down."
"Why the DEA?" Jenny asked, "and not the Feebs?"
"Don't call them that. They hate it."
Jenny smiled broadly, "I know."
"To answer your question," Ecklund continued, "the Pirellis have a monopoly on all the drug flow in this town."
It was funny to Anna hearing somebody call New York City a 'town,' but she hid her smirk as she said, "Nobody can have a true monopoly on anything in this city. It's too varied, it's too damn big."
Ecklund conceded, "Okay, not a hundred percent; there are always little distributors that sneak in and try to set up camp, but the Pirellis control approximately eighty percent of all drugs coming in and out of the city. For every guy you arrest with a pocketful of joints or an Eight-Ball, I can almost guarantee the Pirellis supplied it."
"Huh," Jenny chewed her bottom lip, "That much, really?"
"Okay, so where do we come in?" Anna asked, "we don't know crap about drugs."
"Regrettable, I know, but things aren't always perfect. Sometimes we've got to just go with the best option -- even if it isn't one we normally wouldn't recommend."
Anna pursed her lips tightly, "Thanks a lot."
Ecklund sighed and let his shoulders sag a bit, "The truth is, some of us have been working on this operation for eight years. At one point we had thirteen assets in deep cover within the organization."
Anna giggled, and the deepest, manliest voice she could muster, said, "Deep Cover."
"Oh, I love that movie! Pre-Matrix Larry Fishburne!"
"Pre-'Laurence' Larry Fishburne."
"Two agents were killed, about five months ago, and we have completely lost contact with the remaining eleven."
"Damn," Anna tugged at her chin, "so why us?"
Another heavy sigh from Ecklund, "Well, at this point, the case has gone to hell. All I want now is to save our assets -- if they're still alive."
"Okay, I understand that. But still... why us? Why not go in there with guns blazing and get your guys back?"
Ecklund chuckled, "Because 'Guns Blazing' isn't our method... it's yours."