Pop! Pop! Pop! Pop!
Dante shot straight up in the bed. That did not sound like fireworks. To his left was an empty bed with his soon to be ex-wife’s body imprint deep within the sheets. Nothing new he has awoken many times and she was not there but something scratched at the back of his head.
His legs went into overdrive. The sound came from the direction of Amauri’s room but he prayed the walls were tricking him and it was from downstairs or the opposite side. His bare feet took three stairs at a time despite the protests from his ruined ex-basketball knees. Dante’s eyes locked with Anita’s; they were deadened. For a second he had a moment of relief but as his eyes wondered down that sinking feeling came back harder than before.
“Nita? Nita, why you got a gun?” Such a stupid question he realized after asking. This had to be a nightmare and he was still in bed. Anita started to walk passed Dante but stopped and did a robotic turn toward him. She slightly tilted her head and stared with cold eyes, no smile, no expression really, just complete coldness. He did not stay to hear her explanation if there was one; he felt a dynamic pull toward Amauri’s room and the need to get to him.
How could a second completely turn a life upside down, way down into hell? A shift so strong knocked his legs from underneath him. Dante had to crawl the rest of the way. Lying peacefully was five years old Amauri only thing was his Chicago Bears pajamas was soaked with blood. Amauri got soaked through his t-shirt as he scooped his boy into his arms.
“Amauri, Amauri wake up baby.” He went into the hallway where Anita still stood where he left her.
“Amauri come on man, daddy needs you to wake up!” The gurgles out of his throat were the worse sound Amauri ever heard. “What the hell did you do Anita?!” Another stupid question. “Why?! Wh-“
“To hurt you,” Anita answered with a hint of sweetness to her voice.
Dante flew down the two floors of stairs. In the foyer he struggled to hold his son and dial 9-1-1 with shaken hands. He refused to let his son go.
“My-my-my wife s-shot my son!” he screamed into the phone.
“Your wife did what?”
“She shot my so…” his words could not complete themselves.
“She shot your son? Is she still there?” Donte nodded his head.
“Yes! Yes she still is here!”
“Does she have the gun?”
“I don’t know dammit she shot my son!! Bring somebody to help him!”
“Ok sir I am sending someone but I also need you to be in a safe zone so you don’t get injured as well.”
“I don’t give a damn!”
“I do sir, I need you-“
“My son.” Donte stared down at his boy. They say the person who is about to die sees their whole life flash ahead of them. His son would not have gotten that opportunity because he was asleep. He experienced it for him; everything about his short life flashed before his father’s eyes at high speeds and would not stop; as if it was on replay. Amauri long ago had stopped breathing. His little boy was limp and heavy in his arms.
“Sir? Sir is you with me?”
“Dante,” his wife said above a whisper. At first he did not hear her or know she was standing there.
“Yes,” Dante whimpered.
“Dante,” Anita said louder that time. That got his attention.
“Is that your wife sir? Sir you need to get out of there!”
“Shoot me. Isn’t that – “ Anita started.
“Sir! Sir! Please answer me.”
“….what you want to do right?”
Liquid eyes. That was what she had on their wedding day and right then. Anita held out their 9mm. He reached for it.
End of chapter
Posted from none other than your favorite writer’s favorite writer Ms Talia