I batted the barrel aside as Will Harris pulled the trigger. It took out part of the trailer’s doorway, as well as my hearing. Now deaf and blind in one eye, but thankful that the blast didn’t hurt my head any worse, I shoved Harris farther inside the trailer with my right hand while my left went for my gun.
And found an empty holster.
Right. It was probably still on the road. Or at the bottom of James Creek.
I entered the trailer. Harris raised the shotgun. I quickly sidestepped to the right, grabbed the warm barrel with both hands, and yanked. I smelled blood. I adjusted my grip and did my very best David Ortiz swing. The key is to swivel your hips.
The stock of the shotgun connected with Harris’s belly. He went down. His bloody hands scrabbled at the threadbare green carpet. He was missing his trigger finger.
I looked at the gun. It was stuck in the trigger guard. I shook the gun a little, and the finger dropped to the floor.
I put my boot on the back of his neck. “Stay down, or I will kill you.” I might have shouted it. My ears were ringing, but that was the only thing I could hear at the moment.
His mouth opened and closed a few times, like a fish. I took it as assent, and went looking for his buddy John Wayne Corbett.
We were in the living room, which contained a futon, a coffee table, and a giant wall-mounted TV. To my right was the kitchen, which stank of rotten food, roaches, and beer. To the left, a blanket with the Sons of Anarchy logo was thumbtacked to the dark paneled wall, covering the hallway that led to the bedrooms. And the bathroom, judging by the stale piss smell.
I started that way, stopped when I passed the coffee table, which was a very nice glass and steel piece. Its surface was littered with loose pills–Oxy and hydrocodone, mostly–and my car keys and gun.
I scooped up the latter two items and debated taking some of the Oxy. Once this nightmare shift ended, I would have two days off. It would be nice to spend them passed out in bed.
I sighed. Except I’d been down that road before, and I had no desire to U-turn now. A bottle of whiskey would do the trick just fine.
I debated leaving right then. I had my keys, a fresh uniform in the trunk, plus a gallon jug of water to rinse the blood off of me. (The fact that I need to carry these items might be a hint that I should change my approach to certain situations. A debate for another time.)
I actually turned for the front door.
Then the wall behind me turned to Swiss cheese.
I dropped to my belly. Somehow, miraculously, none of the bullets had hit me. I rolled away from the wall and fired the shotgun at the paneling. It opened up a big hole, but that was all.
I stayed low to the ground and scrabbled behind the futon. I checked the shotgun. Empty. I tossed it and drew my handgun.
I peeked around the futon. Corbett wasn’t coming. Yet.
I turned in time to see Harris scramble to his feet and head for the hallway. I debated shooting him, then Corbett opened up again and I covered my head with my hands and wondered if I’d ever hear anything again.
I carry a Glock 19. It holds 15 rounds, plus one in the chamber. I’d fired . . . how many earlier? Just one? Really, that was it? No wonder it had come to this. I should have unloaded on them back at the road. I should have opened fire as soon as I saw Corbett’s rifle. But I had hesitated. Why had I hesitated?
I blinked hard. Focus, Elizabeth. Get out of here. Get outside.
The door was still open. I got to my knees, tensed, waited. Took a deep breath.