The door slammed open; the deadbolt ripping the door jamb to splinters, as the battering ram smashed home. A baseball sized black orb rolled into the room and exploded in a deafening blast, shattering the glass of the large aquarium near the door and dumping a dozen fish and 100 gallons of salt water onto the carpet. The first SWAT team member shoulder-rolled through the door, his Glock drawn and coc ked. The residents of the home staggered out of the back rooms, dazed, their eyes burning and their eardrums bleeding. As the rest of the SWAT team crashed into the room, the objects of their assault were rapidly wrestled to the ground; their hands and feet bound with long black tie-wraps.
It had all started only 8 hours before, on a clear, sunny, South Florida Sunday afternoon. Around 4:00 pm that day, Suspect One (S1) had decided to ride his new Suzuki V-Strom about 20 miles up the coast to visit a friend, Madame X. His son, Suspect 2, a pleasant lad 9 years of age, enjoyed playing Frisbee with Madame X’s dog. S1 called S2’s Mother to see if he cared to ride along. "Yes, he’d love to go, but he’ll need his long pants, shoes, and a T-Shirt for the ride." S1 located S2’s nylon soccer bag, and tossed the required clothing into the bag, which already held the boy’s soccer shin guards and a pair of shoes. Hooking the nylon bag over the backrest of the mighty V-Strom, S1 rode the few blocks to pick up the boy. Once the apparel was on site, the boy changed into his riding gear, and they both started on their fateful journey.
It was an absolutely perfect day for a ride. The temperature was in the mid 70’s, and only a few clouds were scattered across the sky. The humidity was remarkably low for South Florida, and the winds were extremely light. The V-Strom hummed quietly down the toll-road; both rider and passenger were relaxed by the sound of the bike and the joy of the ride. The V-Strom pulled off the Turnpike, and pulled up to the red light leading to the surface street adjacent to the toll plaza. Suddenly, the motorcycle was engulfed in an acrid, oily black smoke! Huge clouds roiled over the bike, and rose like a mushroom cloud over a Japanese city. Startled motorists leapt from their cars, jaws dropping and fingers pointing. Looking around, S1 realized the smoke was coming from the beloved V-Strom! In seconds, a number of scenarios that could cause the smoke raced through S1’s mind. None of them were good.
Slamming down the kickstand, S1 leapt from the bike and surveyed the scene. The nylon bag, filled with clothes and shoes, had somehow managed to drape itself across the exit of the bike’s port side exhaust. A large hole was melted into the bag, and the contents within were smoldering and smoking. S1 quickly pulled the bag away from the bike, and stomped it with his boot. The light changed to green, and noting the traffic behind him, S1 put his helmet back on and mounted the bike. Holding the bag away from the bike by its straps, S1 decided to continue the short distance to his friend’s house with the bag, rather than toss it alongside the road. Too many witnesses were already alerted to do so. Just as the bike approached the entrance to Madame X’s neighborhood, young S2 began frantically squirming around the back of the bike, threatening to cause loss of control. Thinking the youngster was being burned by the smoldering bag, S1 hurled the bag to the side of the road. He decided to proceed post-haste to Madame X’s house to administer first aid to S2. S1 planned to return to recover the remains of the bag after tending to the medical emergency.
Upon arrival, S1 quickly learned that rather than suffering burns from “el Bago Del Fuego,” S2’s underwear had ridden up his butt cheeks, causing great discomfort. It was a self inflicted wedgie. His struggles had been intended to remove said underwear from their lofty height. Suppressing his instinct to improve the gene pool by fatally choking the boy, S1 began to conduct a damage inspection on the V-Strom.
A yellowish residue covered much of the rear of the bike. Blobs of melted plastic were layered upon much of the end-caps of the mufflers. Some of the heat shield was discolored as well. Luckily, Madame X had a large collection of motorcycle cleaning products for her Sportster, so S1 began working on the bike, forgetting for the moment all about “El Bago.” The bike cleaned up nicely, in fact, after 45 minutes of cleaning, it was impossible to tell that a fire had so recently raged in the aft compartments of the bike. By this time, dusk was at hand, and it was time to return home. S1 and S2 climbed on the bike and headed out, intending to recover the remnants of the bag.
As they exited Madame X’s neighborhood, the riders spied a large contingent of Boca Raton’s finest; gathered around the resting place of “El Bago Del Fuego.” Police cruisers were blocking part of the road, and the Boca Crime Scene Investigation van was deployed. S1’s stomach clenched, as did his sphincter. He casually accelerated the motorcycle past the crime scene, trying hard not to be conspicuous. Watching his rearview mirrors, he waiting for one of the police cars to hurtle after him. They remained in situ, and the motorcyclists continued to ride out of town.
That night, endless scenarios played through S1’s mind. The bag had S1’s name, team, and soccer coach’s name inscribed on the front. Was the damming evidence still legible after the fire damage? Perhaps a full investigation would lead to their door. “Hello, Mr. F? This is Lt. Shozbot with the Boca Raton PD. We’re following up on an attempted terrorist bombing or arson attack involving one of your soccer team players. We need you to come downtown to give a statement.” Or perhaps the Forensics Department would pull S1’s fingerprints from the charred remains, using state of the art mass spectomographs and laser mapping techniques. Certainly those prints are on file with a variety of government agencies. It will be only a matter of time before S1 is brought to justice…dragging his innocent son along with him into a life sentence.
(Author’s Note: None of the above is true. Or, maybe some of it is true and other parts aren’t. Or maybe the author heard about it from some dude he knows. Nobody is really sure, and if they are, they damn sure aren’t admitting to anything. Don’t know nothing, don’t know nothing at all…)