Janie's Got a Gun

The lovely underlined writing is written by @jadealia - she had to write a story for journalism but got writer's block...So i helped her out, which is the non-underlined, bolded writing

I knew it was wrong, I KNEW, but it felt right...and heres the thing...when i pulled that trigger, it was like this weight was just gone, lifted off of me. I could breath. When I fell to my knees in the gravel in tears, it wasn’t because i was sad, it wasn’t out of fear, just the opposite. I wasn’t scared anymore, i was free and…

The officer holding the file slammed it shut and threw it down on the desk. Frustrated, Officer Tyler ran his hand through his hair. He remembered finding the girl crying, gun at her feet, dead body splayed across the railroad tracks no more than 20 feet in front of her. She smiled when she saw him and he helped her up from the ground, she said those words over and over in a barely audible voice, “I’m free”.

Heavily he sat in the chair he’d been standing next to. After questioning the 19 year old girl he found out the man had beat her, and he was not the first. Falling into an abusive relationship was like an everyday thing after living with her father, or so the story would seem coming from this girl. And while he now has some of her background and her reasoning for her actions, he still doesn’t have her name. She sits in her cell, twirling a strand of hair between her fingers muttering those words still, “I’m free, I’m free”. Tyler got up and went to the interrogation room he had her moved to. Walking in he found her twirling the hair again, as she placed her hand on the table the strand remained curled, put into that form from repetition.  He stared at her for a moment, all feeling lost from her face now, she sat numbly awaiting his words and questions.

“I know I’m guilty, and if I go to prison I… I don’t care. If that’s what’s right then it’s only fair I guess, right?” she looked up at him with these big eyes that seemed to make her even younger and innocent. He knew she was guilty, he knows what was going on, and did the two even out? He couldn’t decide, it wasn’t his place to decide; he was place to find out the story, give her an attorney and get her a court date. But why did he feel so wrong for doing that? .

He sat across from her, a sigh escaping his lips. Her eyes echoed with truth, shining with newfound hope that he could only believe to be because of her “freedom”. He had no idea what to make of this girl, so he did what it was he knew best- he began digging for answers. It was almost like she sensed this, as her eyes shaded over and she turned away from him.

“Well, get on with it then.I’m sure there are things you’re just dying to know.” Her sudden bitterness shocked him into silence for a few short moments. She looked up at him with eyes filled with both an unrelenting fear and an unmistakable courage. All right then,Steve, start the interrogation. You still have a job to do.

He stood, sighing, and began to pace. Several strained silences later, he sat back down.

“State your name, date of birth, and your relation to the victim.”

She turned her face away from him, and sat quietly- her face clearly giving away that she was mulling over the question. Oh come on...this was suppose to be the easy question! She lifted her eyes for a short second before saying, “I’m sorry, but I can’t tell you that.”

He groaned in frustration. The next question flew from his mouth without a thought, “Alright then, do you admit to having killed him?” He was short with the question, determined to make it a short investigation. There was something about this girl that made him feel unsure of his capabilities- as if he were the one who was doing wrong. Get yourself together,Steve! You have to focus.

“Yes.” Her answer was just as curt.She kept her face down as he stared hard at her.

“ How did you know him?And for how long?” He stared openly at her,intrigued by her answer and wondering what her story was.

“I was his girlfriend. I suffered for six months, living with him. Today was actually our anniversary, not that the bastard remembered even that.” Again, her voice was drenched in bitterness.

“How did you meet him?”

“Through work- I always meet them through work…” Her voice trailed off, sounding wistful, as if she was casually traveling down a rather unhappy part of memory lane.In a way, she was.

“What is your occupation?”

Here, she lifted her head and glared directly into his face. Again, her mood change had shocked him. My god, this woman is either unstable or re-living some terrible things in that head of hers.

“I will NEVER go back to that! They can’t make me! They can’t, they CAN’T! Her whimpers seem to echo in the silence that followed her outburst. He stared at her, finally seeing just what it was she probably saw everyday in the mirror- a scared, broken girl stuck in a place she didn’t want to be. All she wants to be is free, Steve, do ya think you can manage that?

He cleared his throat and leaned back into his seat. “ Tell me why you killed him.”

Her head jerked up, her eyes wide.The tears were still free falling from her eyes and were leaving bright red trails as they slid down her cheeks. She gasped, a wild sounding sob sounding from her mouth.

“It’s the only way I can help you. You can claim self-defense- there are clearly bruises on your arms and neck. You can be free,like you want, to live happily from now on. Just tell me the truth about what happened. You can start at the beginning, if you wish.Or you can just tell me specifically about what happened earlier today. I just need you to tell me the truth. I want to help you, if you’d just let me.” He ended breathlessly. He saw the bruises, some black and purple, screaming their presence angrily from their various places on her body. Other, paler bruises and scars- almost faded, as most of those scars were- still glared from their ragged perches on her skin; they  had already begun to heal, but the science team here at the station could more than likely confirm the long-term abuse that this poor girl had suffered through. And he did, honestly, want to help her. She had obviously gone through a lot- she had a right to be free of that bastard.That’s not for you to decide, Steve, your job is only to uphold the law, and this “poor girl” has broken what you dedicate hours to preserve.

He startled at this thought, slowly realizing that she had already begun recounting the horrors of her not-so-distant past, while also realizing his hatred for the man that had hurt this woman so thoroughly- she seemed afraid to even be in the room with him, he noticed. She shied away from him as he had regained focus and sat up quickly in his chair. Bunny rabbit, always trying to get away from the possible danger.

“- and he drank, almost every night, coming home at all sorts of hours. He was an angry drunk- twisted and cruel….He beat me, even broke my arm once. He thought it was funny- he laughed as I cowered in a corner. Always hiding..I was always hiding too afraid of him to walk out.” She paused looking at him. She seemed unable to go on, but as soon as he had opened his mouth to give her some encouragement to continue, she resumed her tale.

“ It didn’t take long to realize that he was bloodthirsty- He never stopped hitting me until blood fell… oftentimes he used a knife to cut into my skin… laughing all the while… He was crazy, but I had talked myself into believing I loved him. Some nights, after he was done doing the damage to me, he’d lie next to me, stroking my hair and whispering how much he loved his “pretty,pretty girl”.”

She snarled, the pure hatred for the man she had killed hours earlier writhing itself into her features. Apparently, killing him in cold blood at point-blank range hadn’t been enough to diminish that hate.

“ What happened next?” His voice was barely above a whisper, there was no way she had actually heard him. He couldn’t seem to help but place himself in her shoes, feeling her pain and revering her strength to stay in such a horrible place.

“Next? I lived with that for six months. For weeks, my anger and hatred had been building- I was tired of his “I’m sorry” that never failed to be followed by another punch.” Her voice was cold, devoid of all emotion. “ I waited, biding my time. I bought a gun off the black market- he was known there as Johnny Goodboy- the most ridiculous alias I’ve ever heard, and I’ve pretty much made a career of dating men with idiotic aliases.” She smiled, and laughed soft, airy laugh at this. “ Anyway, I bought a gun, kept it in my room under the mattress. I took it with me whenever I left, so I knew he wouldn’t find if I was away. This happened only a couple of weeks of go, by the way.”

She stopped and looked at him, her tear-stricken face a mask of indifference. He could only begin to fathom the mental anguish her story-telling was causing. He stood and took long strides over to the opposite wall, just needing something to do after hearing such horrible, inhumane things. This girl had spent the last year being treated like a punching bag- his blood began to boil. Hang on, you’re almost done. Just hang on.

He must have said the thought out loud, as when he turned back towards her, her eyes were filled with confusion and gratitude. She took a deep breath, and continued.

“I had ran away in the early morning- I had decided I was done being treated like trash. But...he followed me. I got to the train tracks- there was a 8 o’clock cargo train that runs those tracks everyday, I was going to hop it, as it doesn’t really travel all that fast….But he was there, just as the train came into sight. He grabbed my hair and dragged me away from the tracks. I screamed, tried to fight back even, but he was too strong….” She pointed to her neck before she went on, her entire hand shaking like a leaf on an Autumn wind. “ He picked me up by the throat, yelling at me, calling me stupid, ungrateful, and so many other things that I don’t have the heart to repeat. Do you want me to repeat them?”

He looked at her. She didn’t want to say what he is he had yelled at her, that much would be obvious even to a blind man. So, he shook his head slowly, “ Continue whenever you’re ready.”

Seh nodded, swallowing hard. “ He dropped me, baning my head against the concrete. He kicked me as he walked away.the train had already passed- I had missed my chance. I got so angry, I half didn’t recognize myself- my thoughts were suddenly as cruel and bloodthirsty as he had been to me all those nights. For six months, I had given all I had- money, time, blood LOVE! I gave him everything and here he was, ruining my chance at a happily ever after. I was pissed. I stood, pulling the handgun from my purse. He stood by the train tracks, scremaing at me “How dare you try to leave me, after all I’ve done fr you! HOW DAR-” I shot him then. Just as the sun came out from behind some clouds I shot him. He was shocked. I walked over to him, the gun cocked. I looked at him- he had fallen to the ground...I stood over him and laughed. Laughed like I was crazy.”

She stopped, looked at him, her eyes searching his face. She looked away, as if she was suddenly unsure of what to say.

“ You’re almost done- Finish your story and then we can get you an attorney and then you’ll be free.” He looked at her, his eyes portraying the sheer belief in the words he said.

“Promise?” her voice was small, nearly nonexistent, but he heard her loud and clear.

“I promise.” It was a bad idea- a terrible idea- for him to have promised this. But he did, despite the warning bells going off in his well trained brain.

She sucked in another breath, long and deep.

“ I had stayed there, by his side, laughing for hours. I couldn’t seem to laugh,giggle, gasp enough...I told myself over nad over that I was free, finally free, from him and all those like him. I had demolished my fears- murdered my demons. I could live a happy life now. I crawled away from his body, weary of the past that it contained...I don’t know how long I sat there, staring at the pooling blood around his corpse...The next time I was fully aware of anything was when you helped me off the ground.” Again, she looked at him, but didn’t stop talking. “ You have no idea just how nice that was.”

Her story was at a close it seemed. He didn’t quite know what to say to her last statement,though. It was so different from the gruesome topic she had just described.

“ Well, I can only imagine how nice it may have seemed. You’ve been through hell and back.”

She smiled, and laughed a soft laugh.”I have never known a man who did something like that without an alterior motive… It was a nice change.” She blushed, putting her head down and fiddling with the loose threads on her shorts.

he smiled at her, wanting so badly to shower her with kindness as she had lived a lifetime of pain and sadness.

“ You’re welcome. You won’t have to tell your story again, since I recorded it. So, I’ll just go get you an attorney appointed, and then he, or she, will listen to the tape recording. ID they have any questions for you, you’ll have to talk to them of course. It shouldn’t be too much of a hassle though. You were pretty thorough with your recounting of events.”

He stood, and began walking towards the door.

“Steve?” He stopped at the sound of her voice saying his name- he didn’t remember ever introducing himself.


“Thank you.”

He nodded, turning back towards the door. His hand was on the handle when she spoke again.Her voice was soft, a whisper that barely reached his ears.


“Yes?”He kept his voice low, afriad that if he spoke too loudly she may shut down and not say whatever it was she needed to say.

“ I’m from New Albany, but grew up in the streets of Manhattan. My birthday is May 29th, and I was born in 1994. Since I was 14, I have  worked as a personal escort for men in the mafia, finding myself in horrible situations. In 3 years I have faced domestic abuse and rape on a daily basis..You’ve heard my story on how I became a killer, yet you don’t know me at all. “

She paused, and he didn’t dare breathe.

“My name is Janie Luciano, the great-granddaughter of Lucky Luciano.”

He nodded,seemingly unaffected by this strange twist, and walked out the door. The past and future of this broken,yet unbeaten girl was as muddled as his thoughts were on this newest development.

The End

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