The other night, an idea struck me for a new short story. I couldn’t get it out of my head, so I got out of bed, went to my writing station, sat down, and cranked it out. Coming in at just under 1300 words, it turned out to be a fun little story (or so I thought, but perhaps I’m a tad biased). 🙂
Thought I’d throw it up on my blog. I hope you enjoy it! (Oh—and please forgive the formatting; I can’t format it these things in book style, WordPress automatically formats it for the web. I suppose I could try to figure out how to re-write the CSS, but it would be quite a lengthy process, so I’ll just ask that you overlook that awkward aspect of the text for now…thanks!)
Don’t Got Much Blood
He knocked briskly on the heavy wood door, and inside the house a small dog began yapping, muffled.
He’d been watching her for two weeks; he knew she lived here, and knew she lived alone.
Looking to the right of the door, he tried the worn, black doorbell button. But he heard nothing inside—save the barking dog, closer now—and the button didn’t feel like it did anything. Probably not working.
He knocked harder, more urgent. The dog, now right on the other side of the door, upped its barking to match the urgency.
Finally, when enough time had passed that he figured she’d’ve come to the door if she were going to, he quickly glanced around to the street behind him—empty and quiet; it was early, just breaking dawn—turned, and kick the door.
It slammed inward with a shattering ruckus, the right frame splitting top to bottom, the strike plate bouncing across the carpet, just missing the little Chihuahua, which was standing its ground, barking feverishly now, eyes bulging, teeth bared in a snarl.
One more quick glance behind him, then he stepped in.
This time, the dog backed up a little, but continued growling, barking, and snarling, unabated. Doing its job, challenging this intruder.
“Come’ere, little guy,” he whispered, smiling as he bent and reached toward the dog. As his hand neared the top of the dog’s head, it stopped barking, laid it’s ears back, crouched to the carpet, and began whimpering.
“That’s a good boy,” he whispered, as he picked the tiny dog up by the nape of its neck. The dog hung there, wide-eyed and in silent submission, shivering slightly as piss dribbled to the floor.
With the other hand he pulled a thin handle from his jacket pocket, pushed a button, and a long, straight blade snapped from the handle with a shick! The razor-sharp steel gleamed, even in the relative darkness.
With one deft movement, he cut the dog’s throat nearly ear to ear, opening a gaping wound that immediately flooded red. The dog squealed once at the start, but went limp almost immediately thereafter.
He dropped the lifeless body to the carpet, where it lay in its own piss and blood, open eyes staring into eternity.
He stood for a moment, contemplating the tiny, bloody, lifeless body lying before him, and noticed that the bleeding had already ceased; the dark red pool was no longer growing, seeping into the carpet.
“You little guys don’t got much blood, do ya?” He asked quietly.
Knife in hand, he forgot the dog, and surveyed his surroundings.
He was in a small entry. To the left: what looked like a formal sitting room, with a formal dining area to the rear. To the right: a living room with big-screen TV on the wall, and a more casual dining table to the rear. Behind the table, a sliding glass door let out onto a large deck strewn with patio furniture. The pool in the back yard rippled gently, and he could just hear the quiet hum of the pool pump running out there somewhere.
He guessed that running along the rear of the house, between the formal dining room on the left, and the casual dining table on the right, must be the kitchen, which he couldn’t see from where he stood.
In front of him: a stairwell that ascended halfway up, then turned left and continued, a railed walkway spanning the length above.
Like a ghost, he slipped up the stairs soundlessly.
Doors flanked the walkway, all standing open. A quick glance into each revealed two empty bedrooms, a bathroom, and a small room in the corner that appeared to be converted into some kind of sewing room.
But the door at the very end was closed.
The master bedroom.
As he tip-toed up to the door, he noticed it wasn’t actually latched; it was swung nearly closed, but still open just a crack, a tiny slit of flowered wallpaper visible through the opening along the left side.
Leaning in toward the door, he held one ear just short of the opening, listening intently.
Holding the knife at the ready, he gently pushed the door inward just a tiny bit more—slowly, silently—and peered in.
A large bed sat just inside the door, mussed up but empty. Sheets and blankets were twisted and strewn; it looked recently slept in.
He pressed his left cheek against the door frame and scanned as much of the room as he could see, and, to his surprise, ascertained that nobody was there.
“Okay, where is that bitch?” He whispered to himself.
Standing back a little, keeping cover out in the walkway, he quietly swung the door the rest of the way open with his right foot, pushing it back slowly, evenly, cautiously scoping the room as it came into view. But then the door came to an abrupt stop, bumping quietly against the corner of a dresser that sat against the inside wall to his right—but at this point he could already see the entire room…empty.
Then, he saw the closed door down at the far end, on the right, almost out of his line of sight: the master bath.
As he silently traversed the bedroom and approached the closed door on the other end, he could hear water running. A little closer, and he heard music. He tip-toed the rest of the way, right up to the door.
He stood listening: sounded like the bath was running. Just then, the music faded and a DJ came on briefly, then a commercial. Staticky and hollow, like a clock radio.
Looking down, he pushed the button on his knife, retracting the blade with another shick!, and shoved the handle back into his jacket pocket.
He preferred using his bare hands; it was much more exciting that way, much more erotic—and even the sex afterward was better, longer.
At the thought, he could feel his flesh below swelling in anticipation.
He stood listening through the door a few moments longer; the bathwater continued to run, and when the commercial ended the radio started blaring Rebel Yell by Billy Idol.
One of his favorites.
As he grasped the doorknob, he couldn’t help smiling. He’d been waiting a long time for this.
His cock now throbbing, he quietly turned the knob, and felt the door release. With any luck, there’d be a wall mirror just inside, through which he could quickly scan the bathroom, scope the situation, and plan his approach before he even entered the bathroom, before she had any idea what was—
The explosion came from his right, the bullet tearing through his neck and throwing him against the wall just past the bathroom door, watching in horror as his own blood sprayed across the white door in front of him.
He was slammed shoulder-first against the wall, then turned and flopped his back against it like a rag doll, head lolling, blood pulsing and spurting from both tattered, open wounds on either side of his neck.
Though he was quickly losing consciousness, the wall supported him just long enough for him to look up and around—shocked, bewildered, confused.
Then he saw her.
She stood there, on the other side of the dresser, concealed behind the bedroom door. He had walked right past her.
Her feet were spread apart in a sturdy stance, the stainless-steel 9mm semi-automatic clutched in both hands and held straight out from her body at shoulder level, elbows locked, eyes trained down the sights.
Obviously, she’d had some training.
Through clenched teeth she hissed: “NOW who don’t got much blood?”
As his vision began to blur, she fired again, and all went dark.
A Note From Rand: Thank you for taking the time to read my story. If you enjoyed it, you might check out the others in my collection Rolling The Bones: 12 Tales of Life, Death, Loss, & Redemption, which is available on Amazon in both trade paperback and on Kindle.
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