Darren Lee February 2, 2012

Vocabulary English

Hot pursuit on the Riviera

Welcome to Saint Tropez, Italy. It's a peaceful, serene place. The sun's golden rays gleam over the Riviera horizon, its shafts of light striking the translucent stain glass windows of the nearby buildings, creating a sparkling light show. The casinos let out shouts of joy and the clinking of coins on the polished wax floor. The lazy rolling waves on the beach and the smooth, slow Italian music create a pleasant ambience.

At least that's how it was 5 minutes ago.

This is my episode. I'm Darren Lee, Pursuit Specialist of the Saint Tropez Polizia. I was in my condo at that time, playing Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit. Then, the phone rang. It was the police chief. "This is no normal aberration, Darren. We've found Stacked Deck."

The chief was referring to one of the most notorious international crime rings, whose transgressions far surpass the amount that one would be willing to count. They first operated out of a old Starbucks in NYC. My friend Nathan, who was part of the NYC police force at that time, made sure that their first operations out of that old Starbucks were transient ones. But now, they're operations are nowhere near the transitory ones at their start. They specialize in espionage, smuggling, and-gosh, why?—causing a ruckus involving high speed pursuits throughout different parts of the world.

This was where I came in. Two of the Stacked Deck members that were here in Saint Tropez had robbed one of the most exuberant casinos, taking hundreds of thousands of euros worth of items. This was no Fast Five with two Dodge Chargers hauling a safe, this was…well, there actually were no details, really. I could only identify them by their "coiled serpent on an ace of spades" design on their vehicles.

Patrolling the Riviera is nowhere near easy. The traffic is massive, looking like there is an exodus happening both ways all the time. At this point, though, I had my cop car, a Lamborghini Reventon, parked on a side alley, waiting for any Stacked Deck vehicle to go by. The wait was short, though, as I noticed another Lamborghini driving rather erratically…or perhaps a drunk driver. It didn't take me long, or the driver, to realize who each of us were and for the Stacked Deck driver to floor the gas and speed off in a cloud of smoke.

Me? No problem. I told you that my car was a Reventon, right? It's one of the best handling cars Lamborghini has made. Stacked Deck? Lamborghini Murcielago LP670-4 Super Veloce. Those dudes made the mistake of choosing a Lambo that handles like a rusted casino wheel. Well, that's the last mistake they will ever make, I told myself as I jumped and started my Reventon with that V12 revving at peak.

A chase on the Riviera is much more difficult than just patrolling. First, there's the suspect's vehicle, which you have to chase at 150 miles an hour, and then there's dodging a Citroen DS3 every 5 feet, swerving left, then right, then left, then right, then left again. Speaking of which, those guys just committed another infraction: driving off the roadway. I had to keep one hand on the steering wheel and type on the side computer the new infraction those dudes just committed. "Infraction #7: Driving off Roadway…Stacked Deck driver swerved…oh, wait, that's not a transitive verb, is it? Oh, gosh, why now?" I said to myself, slamming down the computer monitor.

In the middle of the chase, the other guy took out a machine gun and started firing right at the car windshield, barely missing my head. The police radio squeaked, "Supervisor would like a report, please." "Well, somebody's obituary's going to be written today. Suspect is firing at my P.C. I'm going to need a 1073 out here," I replied, still dodging the flying bullets. 1073 means roadblock. Those guys would be nut balls to try hitting a roadblock. 1) They'll flip, and 2) There's no dumpster to serve as a ramp for escape.

Up ahead on the autobahn, the roadblock was set. The roadblock stood on the autobahn overlooking the ocean strung along the Riviera. The Stacked Decked guys saw the roadblock, and stopped the Murcielago and did a 180 degree J-turn. At least that's what they were trying to do. I was still behind them, and as they twisted around, I t-boned them on the side, spinning the Murcielago like a top off the railing and into the ocean. As I got out of my car, I looked at the sinking Lamborghini as it finally plunged down into the ocean, with the two guys stuck in there.

"Well it's not my obituary that's going to be written today…"