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Stories posted in this category are works of fiction. Names, places, characters, events, and incidents are created by the authors' imaginations or are used fictitiously. Any resemblances to actual persons (living or dead), organizations, companies, events, or locales are entirely coincidental. Note: While authors are asked to place warnings on their stories for some moderated content, everyone has different thresholds, and it is your responsibility as a reader to avoid stories or stop reading if something bothers you. 

Unspoken - 14. Three Minutes

A chapter that’s been in the plan since the start. It’s short by design, minimal sign and Italian.

Fair WARNING: There is a non-explicit description of fatal violence.

Three minutes is all it takes to change your life.

There’s a type of awakening that is jarring and disorienting. You’re asleep, or on your way there, when something happens and you slam right into full consciousness. Like, your body will jerk a bit, and you go from asleep to awake so fast your brain takes a moment to catch up, to figure out where you are and what’s going on. The programmer at work once described it to me as ‘like a segfault.’ I had no idea what that meant, but I’d assume he wasn’t wrong. I’d occasionally take a powernap on the couch in my office at work, and once that’s how I’d woken to him popping his head in. My lungs were heaving like I’d run a marathon, eyes wide and searching, brain blank. Ian had just raised an eyebrow at me and said ‘you look like you just hit a segfault.’ As far as being pulled from sleep into wakefulness, it was my least favorite way of it happening.

It happened that night, except I knew what it was that had caused it. A metallic ratcheting sound.

I bolted upright, eyes wide, chest heaving and heart hammering in my chest, only to be smacked hard across the face, knocking me back down. Part of the hand must have hit one of my ears, as ringing inhibited me from understanding what was being said. I shook my head to clear it, and opened my eyes. The room was still dark, which told me that it was still very late at night or early in the morning. Our rooms windows faced the backyard, and there was no light but the muted porch-light in evidence. A bright glint flashed across my vision. A knife. My eyes widened as a wretched face shoved itself right up to mine. The man was too close for me to read his lips, and the ringing still kept me from understanding most of what he said. I caught a few words: ‘kill,’ ‘be back,’ and ‘kid.’ I didn’t know what this bastard wanted with us, but I sure as hell wouldn’t sit idly by while he hurt any of us. He stood back up, moving towards the door, ostensibly heading for Bryce’s room, and I took the first moment I had to look over to Nicolo. I’d felt him moving, so I knew he wasn’t dead, but part of me was asking why the fuck he hadn’t done anything. This much movement should have awoken him. His eyes were watching me wide. He mouthed at me what looked like ‘man eat.’ Manette. Handcuffs. That must have been the sound that woke me up. A soft click announced the bedroom door closing, which we both glanced at, before looking back to each-other. A thought of how stupid this fuck must be, whatever he wanted, to both see me as harmless, and to leave me unrestrained. His mistake. Nicolo whispered to me, willing to take the risk, but still quiet, “Salvare nostro figlio. Uccidere il bastardo.”

I nodded shortly, and bolted into action. I sat upright, and hopped off the bed. Reaching behind my bedside, I grabbed the SIG Sauer P320 Compact hanging off a magnet back there, and the spare mag that hung next to it.
Fucking moron, I thought, both about this asshole who had broken into our home, and myself. Should have thought of something like this happening.

Whatever, I’d said to myself, kick yourself later. Bryce is more important. I looked to Nicolo, and gave him a wink. I set down the mag for a second, so I could pull back the slide on the SIG just enough to confirm it was chambered. Dropping the mag confirmed that it was loaded, and I slammed it back into the gun, my instincts telling me that haste trumped stealth right now. Regardless, I knew it was stupid to assume that even though I checked the pistol and mag before going to sleep, that meant it was still ready. It was.

The capacity of the P320 Compact varied, as all firearms do, based on caliber. Mine was 9mm Parabellum, also known as 9mm Luger, which allowed a modest 15 in each standard mag. I used SIG Black Label 145grain jacketed hollow point rounds. Two mags, plus one chambered, or up the pipe in slang terms, meant 31 shots before I’d need to reload the magazines, or find a different gun. I’d had enough practice firing this pistol one handed, so if necessary I wouldn’t have to fumble with the pockets in my sleep shorts for the spare mag. I’d always followed the idiom of “a pistol to get you to your rifle.” Perhaps it was time to have a custom bed frame manufactured that could conceal two rifles. From this point forward I would get Nicolo more training, and a bedside pistol, at the least, as well. A small spurt of satisfaction flew through me at the decision to use levered door handles instead of knobs. This allowed me to open the doors without having to play games with the pistol and mag.

These thoughts and possibilities ran through my head as I crept down the hall. Haste over stealth did not mean abandoning stealth. Approaching Bryce’s room, a scream rang out, and sounds of struggling ensued. It took all my strength not to rush up and bust the door. When I got the the door, however, I didn’t stand on ceremony, and using my left elbow, I opened the door and pushed through, heaving the door with a foot. Stepping into the room, it was evident that whatever the intruder’s goal, Bryce was fighting back. The noise of the door alerted them both to my presence, and in a swift and surprisingly effective move, considering Bryce’s resistance, the man turned and held Bryce in front of him, an arm across the boy’s neck. No words were spoken, but I could see a smidgen of relief show in Bryce’s eyes at the sight of me. I nodded to him, and it seemed he didn’t want to give the man any time. He jerked his head to the side, and viciously sank his teeth into the man’s bicep. The effect was immediate. This time it was the man that screamed, releasing his hold on our son, who went boneless, dropping to the floor and rolling towards me. This is what I was hoping for. With Bryce out of the way, my right hand swung up in a wide arc, and pointed directly at the man’s chest.

The man fell after the fifth shot, and I stopped, but the muzzle followed him down to the floor, and I could see blood on his chest. It’s never like the movies, never an explosion of blood, never as quiet as people believe. It really hurts the ears, especially being inside. I knew that probably everybody within a couple hundred feet would have heard the shots, and there would likely be multiple calls to the police. Time was of the essence, but I knew what needed to be done. I dropped the spare mag, and tapped at Bryce with my foot. He uncurled himself, pulling his hands away from his ears, and got shakily to his feet, just to my left. I nodded to his scared face, and with one hand managed to spell out ‘bolt cutters Nicolo help.’ Bryce nodded and ran out of the room, likely grateful he didn’t need to stay. He had acted so amazingly well, he would need to be rewarded for his response.
Moments passed before Nicolo entered the room, cuffs still on his wrists, the chain between them cut. I spelled out ‘call Mike lawyer’ to him, and he nodded before leaving again. He understood. Mike would be able to get a lawyer for us, as this was sure to involve legal action. We had no time for text messages, and regardless of the absolute lack of motion from the intruder, I would not approach, and I would keep my muzzle on him until the police arrived. I did, however, bend down and Velma on the floor for the spare mag, thinking to myself that this was going to be a long night.

I didn’t care if it was a week or a year before we were finished with what was about to happen, because both my boys were safe. This was the second time I’ve had to shoot someone for attempting violence, but I didn’t care, because my boys were safe. My boys were safe.
Nothing else mattered.
My boys were safe.

Salvare nostre figlio. Uccidere il bastardo. - Save our son. Kill the bastard.

Copyright © 2021 Late to the party; All Rights Reserved.
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Stories posted in this category are works of fiction. Names, places, characters, events, and incidents are created by the authors' imaginations or are used fictitiously. Any resemblances to actual persons (living or dead), organizations, companies, events, or locales are entirely coincidental. Note: While authors are asked to place warnings on their stories for some moderated content, everyone has different thresholds, and it is your responsibility as a reader to avoid stories or stop reading if something bothers you. 
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One has to wonder just what was the motive? 

More to the point, the perp only had one pair of handcuffs and was Bryce the target...why?

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On 4/6/2022 at 2:54 PM, drsawzall said:

One has to wonder just what was the motive? 

More to the point, the perp only had one pair of handcuffs and was Bryce the target...why?

A good chapter. Yes. Why break in, handcuff the big guy, ignore the small one and go straight for the kid?

Who was this guy and why did he do what he did, rhe way he did?

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