October 4, 1937

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They ambushed me.

The shot came from above the First National Stores entrance and caught me square in the chest. I felt the slug punch through my sternum and clip my heart, the bullet tearing a path out of my back and into the street.

I staggered back, sat down hard and leaned back against a wall.

The few people who had been on the street ran.

They knew what was coming next.

As my flesh knit itself back together, I saw a shape move away from the window where the shot had come from. When I was certain the shooter was no longer looking at me, I drew one of my Colts and waited.

The bushwhacker came out through the lawyer’s door, a long rifle in his hand and a smug look on his face. He strolled toward me, slinging the weapon and crouching down in the center of the street. He was handsome, his teeth even and bright. The man glanced around as if expecting to hear police sirens.

It showed he wasn’t from Cross.

“I was told you were dangerous,” the man informed me, his voice gentle. “I guess they just wanted to make it exciting for me.”

“Did it?” I snarled through clenched teeth.

The man laughed and nodded. “The fact that you’re sitting there, still breathing, hell, that’s interesting enough. Truth is, I might not even take payment.”

“You won’t be able to.”

“Why’s that?” he asked, and I shot him in the groin.

Even in his agony, the man tried to slide his rifle off his shoulder.

I got to my feet and shot him in his shin, the bullet snapping the bone in half and causing the lower portion of his leg to twist and leap of its own accord.

Taking his rifle, I undid the strap. He screamed as I made a tourniquet over his knee on his damaged leg. I stripped his jacket off him and stuffed it roughly against his groin.

“Hold it, or you’ll bleed out,” I said, and the man did as he was told.

With my wound healed, I dragged the fool across the street and back into the building he had ambushed me from. As the door closed behind us, I shoved him under the stairs and reloaded my Colt.

He didn’t live long, but he lived long enough to tell me that Professor Adam Lucas hadn’t been working alone.

There’s killing to be done.

#fear #horrorstories #paranormal

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Nicholas Efstathiou

Husband, father, and writer.

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