“Nothing personal,” Luchari said, aiming the pistol. “Just business.”

“Is that supposed to make me feel better?” said Da Silva.

Luchari lowered his gun. “How do you mean?”

“Would this being personal really make that much of a difference?” Da Silva shrugged as much as his restraints would allow. “I mean, after all, I’m dead either way.”

“I suppose so,” Luchari said, stroking his chin. “Never thought of it that way before.

“It being personal might even be a good thing. Me, I’ve done some bad stuff in my time. I can see a guy taking something like that, making it personal, and going out of his way to settle accounts. It’s what I’d do. I can respect that in a way.”

“You know,” Luchari said thoughtfully, “I think it’s really more for me, than for you. Makes me feel like I’m somehow not killing you in cold blood, that everything’s okay.”

“Hey, I know exactly where you’re coming from,” said Da Silva. “Whatever it takes to get you to sleep at night.”

“This has been very illuminating. Thank you.” Luchari smiled, then squeezed off two shots from the hip. Da Silva slumped forward, the back of his skull gone.

“I love it when someone comes up with something a little more creative than ‘please don’t kill me,'” Luchari said to his men. “Having a little stimulating conversation for a change makes this job that much easier.”