"Reeves" illo by Norm Breyfogle. Photo illustration by Stephen Pytak.

 
REEVES   -- The .40 Caliber Mouse hangs 
around this stranger's neck like the 
albatross in that famous poem by 
Coleridge.
   On the surface, he looks like a bad
cliche: good-looking former Interpol
agent  in his late 30s who lives a 
dangerous life and has an accent.
   While that's true -- it's his way of 
making friends and influencing people --
inside that shell are layers of sticky 
grays and blacks. 
   His troubles are so bad, he can feel 
them under his skin, like teeming insects.
Plus he's infected by "The Itch," an urge 
to kill and kill again. It's driving him at top 
speed to a soul-shattering date with 
destiny.
   Not much is known about his 
background. He prefers to remain an 
enigma, hiding behind a facade.
   Corinn has tried to get him to open up
time and again, without much success. 
She didn't know his real name, until she 
came across an envelope sitting on his 
desk three months after their first 
meeting.
   What she does know is his troubles
involve his wife, Joni, who committed 
suicide a few Decembers back.
   In her last request, Joni asked him to 
take care of some business for her by
bringing something to life, something
she'd made up, a joke at the dinner 
table.
   She called it The .40 Caliber Mouse.
ALLIES: Corinn. Mazz. His favorite
pistol, a .40 caliber semi-automatic
with a 13-round magazine. He calls 
it "Lucky." Corinn named The .40 
Caliber Mouse logo/mascot after it.
  
HOBBIES: Pursing a seemingly
impossible death wish. Throwing 
himself into dangerous situations, 
oftentimes hoping to catch a bullet or
two in the process. Watching Italian
and UK horror films from the '70s. He's
a fan of directors Dario Argento and
Pete Walker. Playing Solitaire chess.

MUSIC: Alternative.

GUILTY PLEASURES: Brandy.
Cigarettes. Occasionally using a side-
opening switchblade to do his dirty 
work. 

PET PEEVES: Talking about his past.
Listening to Corinn's theories about
how The .40 Caliber Mouse should be
run. People who are "fans" of The .40
Caliber Mouse. Murphy's law.