The CulpritMature

From then on I don’t remember much. Just running, trying to get away from the screams. They didn’t last long. Tears started filling my eyes. I tried to tell myself it was from the sting of the cold air. I was out of breath, from running just as much as my silent sobs. I ran my hand through my hair and down to my neck trying to slow my breathing. The tears overflowed my eyes and joined the beads of sweat rolling off my cheeks.

Then I saw it. Just down the road, tucked beneath some low hanging branches of an old willow was a police cruiser. I wiped the tears from my vision and griped my atlatl tight so that my forearm started to cramp. I started toward the crashed cruiser, trying to peer through the brush. This thing wasn’t going to get the drop on me. I called out to it and it replied with a throaty moan that made me stop dead. A shiver found its way through my spine and my hair stood up everywhere.

Then he emerged from the shroud of the willows thin branches. As he stepped out into the moonlight, I could make out his uniform, wet in places that sparkled a deep scarlet. His eyes were lifeless, yet locked on me.  With each step, his jaw wobbled side to side- it had been smashed flat against his throat, the rips of cheek flapping in the breeze.

My breathing quickened and I broke into a run, raising and drawing back my feeble stick. I remember trying to scream something along of “You fucking bastard” but I choked on my words and they came out garbled. As I closed the gap with it, his arms started to rise, reaching out to me. I swung out in a wide arc, the reach of my extended arm far greater than his twitching fingers. Wood connected with skull. The dead cop tumbled to the ground, still twitching in a crumpled heap. I raised my arms high above my head, gripping the atlatl with both hands.

“Rest in peace asshole.”

Despite my best efforts, my atlatl seems to be permanently blood stained. I managed to get the mushy gray matter out of it though. A thud from the cruiser made me turn on the spot, brandishing my blood soaked stick like a sword. I slowly started to the curtain of branches. I drew back the branches and almost shit myself as a raccoon jumped off the car. I peeked in the drivers’ window, looking for anything useful.

The steering wheel was coated with blood and was probably the cause of my friends’ new jaw line. The keys were in the ignition. I doubted it would start but I tried anyway. No dice. I took the keys out as an idea struck me. I ran back over to the corpse and checked for a side arm. Seeing as both his ammo pouches were empty on his belt it wasn’t a surprise that he had discarded his side arm. Then I remembered my dad riding shotgun. Pushing back tears, I made the way to the cruisers trunk. I said a silent prayer before turning the key in the lock. The trunk popped open and low and behold, sat a twelve gauge with two boxes of ammo.

The End

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