But the shot which rang out did not come from Stannard, but from the lift, shattering Stannard's wrist. The criminal turned looked up, cursing, as he tried to staunch the bleeding.
"Cliveden Stannard." The unmistakable voice of the Green Man caused the girls to smile happily. "You have been given the chance to show that you were no more than a harmless con man. Instead, you have demonstrated that you are a heartless monster. You would have blotted out two lives because they threatened your career of crime. You have stolen from the most vulnerable and trusting in society, in order to line your own pockets."
"You!" Stannard fell back, trembling. "But how...?"
"You are not the only one who has tracking devices and silent alarms, Stannard." The Green Man walked slowly out of the lift. "When my agent went to that house, I suspected that she might be walking into a trap. She has several homing devices on her. Now I have found you."
"Kill him!" Stannard shouted to his men.
At once, Sparrowhawk and Ms. Madison turned, kicking the men closest to them, before tackling the others, both showing a good grasp of unarmed combat techniques. The Green Man continued to approach Stannard.
"You cannot hide behind your hired thungs now, Stannard," he snarled. "The day of reckoning is here, and you will have to fact that alone. Every man, Stannard, is to be put to death for his own sin."
"Please..." Stannard shook like a leaf. "I'm a rich man, I can..."
"Your wealth will not save you." The Green Man shook his head, raising his gun. "Whether you have killed directly or just given the order, there is blood on your hands, Cliveden Stannard. And that blood cries out for vengeance..."
"Please!" a tear rolled down Stannard's cheek, give me a chance, I..."
"You have had your chance." The Green Man was unmoved. "This was a test, Stannard. And you have failed. All that remains for you now is vengeance. The vengeance of the Green Man."
The gun spoke. Stannard screamed, as the impact of the bullet punched him through the glass of the penthouse window. The scream he gave as he fell indicated that he was still alive. Until he hit the ground.
Sparrowhawk and Ms. Madison followed the Green Man from Stannard's penthouse, leaving battered thugs behind them, and an open case of domuments detailing Stannard's activities.