Aiming for a creative life

I Am Santo

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Simon moved fast, shoving his unconscious attacker further into the backseat so his legs were no longer in the way of the door closing. Beneath the man’s head, blood pooled like spilled tar into the car’s dark backseat fabric. The lamp strikes in the hallway had done damage, but that last hit from the gun barrel split his skull. It could have been worse. Simon’s reflex was to knock him out and not shoot him, the gun’s intended purpose not even an option to him. As he hastily reached under the driver’s seat to discover what the man was going to grab, Simon considered bringing him to the hospital. Break the killing cycle. That was how to survive.

His hand found the package, brown paper wrapping what felt like two bricks made up of bills. The deposit for his own murder. He withdrew it, but as he did so his hand ran against a sharp edge. Simon placed the money in his pants’ waistband, and reached under again, this time producing a long phillips head screwdriver. He stuffed it into his deep pants pocket, noting how sharp it was. Unlikely the tool fit anything in the car, Jaimie’s twin must have had it as a back up weapon, something grabbed in haste. Simon shut the door, and shoved the gun into his other pocket, pulling his sweater down over the handle. The kids were on the brick sidewalk at the edge of their building now, led by Ellie. He shouted to them, his voice shaky and he ran as best he could with metal banging against his legs and hip bone. The kids’ faces screwed in confusion, eyes initially brightening to see their father home early, then worry frowning their small faces due to his excited state. Simon tried to calm and forced a smile, but they knew him too well. Alec asked what was wrong, his brown eyes like saucers. Out of the corner of his eye, Simon caught his own shadow long the brick wall, hands outstretched in a panicked motion as if he were protecting them from fire. He crouched down, explaining the apartment was being fumigated. Looks like too many cereal towers fell and weren’t cleaned up. Alec smiled, but then Kailey’s brow wrinkled as she looked at her father, noticing something wrong. She reached for his neck, scared. (To be continued…)

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