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It all started on a stormy night. The rain outside was tapping on my window, trying to get in my dim office. I was sitting in my office, laying on my desk and doing what I do best: sleep. The sound of the rain outside was like a soft blanket of sleepeness, helping along with the progress I was already making. But the sound of a gunshot awakened me from my trance.
You see, it didn't exactly sound like a gunshot. It sounded more of like a little prank someone pulled off from behind me. Like someone blowing up a paper bag full of air and popping it right next to my right ear.
But it wasn't. It was an all natural gunshot, one I haven't heard in years.
I checked behind my back anyway, just in case it was a prank.
After about two minutes had passed by, my assistant's door slowly creaked open, letting in a shimmer of light from the other room, adding its light to the darkness in my room. I hid under my desk, already startled from the disturbance I had gotten from my slumber. A head started to show from the tiny crack. Slowly, brown hair crept forth, then skin, then eyes. The eyes seemed familiar to me, all green and glittery, like I had seen them before. Maybe at a party of some sort. Then I realized. It was my assistant, Sarah.
I saw that I wasn't in any real harm, so I lifted my head from under the desk only to find that the top of it was in my way. My head made a loud, hollow 'thumping' noise, or was it the desk that made the 'thump?' Anyway, I reached for my head, hoping the throbbing pain would stop. As I rubbed the bump on my head, I stood up from under the desk, watching where I put my head this time.
"Mr. Garren?" Sarah said with her gentle, little voice. She sounded so sweet when she said something like, "Hi," or, "How are you doing this morning, Mr. Garren?" and, "Here's your coffee, Mr. Garren," and so forth. It was as if she was a musician and her voice was the symphony.
"Mr. Garren is that you?" Sarah questioned again.
"Yes, it's me Sarah," I answered in a very painful sounding voice.
"Thank goodness!" she exclaimed. "I was so worried!"
"Don't worry about me Sarah; I can take care of myself." I said with a calming voice, but my face gave it away that I was not only in pain, but scared. Hopefully the lamp behind me hid it all of my facial features.
"I thought I heard the gunshot from outside, but it didn't sound like a gunshot," she said. "It sounded as though a pop gun went off right in my office."
Strange. My own partner and I thought the same thing, except in a different context. That never happens. No matter how many times, I thought of something, in the past, Sarah always came up with a better solution, and she was right every time.
Sometimes I grew jealous of her natural detective talent, and I always wondered if it would rub off on me. Hey, wait. Isn't that what she's suppose to think of me?
Anyway, back to our dilemma.
"I thought the exact same thing myself, Sarah," I said.
She had the same exact look I had on my face after I said that.
All of a sudden, my office door swung open. It swung so fast that the knob on the door flew into the hole already in the wall from all of the fast-swinging doors it's had in the past. I've always wanted to fix that.
Startled, I jumped, my heart rate going with me. But there Sarah was, just standing there as calm as can be.
"Who are you?" she questioned the man.
He seemed to be a middle aged looking guy who had water dripping from everywhere, all over my beautiful carpet, mostly from his hair. It was probably because of the pouring rain from outside. The water dripped and ran all over his face. It seemed like he had gel mixed in with the water in his hair, and by the way he was dressed, there probably was. The man seemed to be wearing a dark tuxedo with a white undershirt and a blue tie. He had black kaki pants that seemed too small, because I could see the dark socks he was wearing with his shiny black shoes. His shoes were probably slick and shiny because the rain outside gave them a personal bath. There wasn't any dirt or mud on his shoes though, which threw me off for a bit. In fact, only his hair seemed to be wet at the time. Maybe he was trying to throw me off with the shoes. If he was, he was doing a pretty good job. There seemed to be some red looking residue on the crease of his mouth and a little on the collar of his white undershirt. Must have dripped some red cake while eating it at the fancy party he was at.
"Help! My wife! She needs help!" he yelled, panting and leaning against the doorway holding his chest. He was staring at me intently. Like I was a ghost, and he was the "Ghostbusters", when it should have been the other way around, him being as white in the face as he was. The whole time he just stared at me with those big, blue eyes.
Then, his body went limp.
He just dropped, right in front of me, his face lifeless and empty. I reached out and caught his fall, holding him under his arms while I knelt to catch him, and I did.
Wow! For once in my life, I actually caught something!
Anyway, I noticed it just out of the corner of my eye, and once I really focused my attention onto it, it surprised me a little.
Jutting out from his back was a knife.
I seemed to be one of those pocketknives you can buy right off the counter while you're checking out of a line in a mini-mart. The ones that have the variety of tools in it that you'd never use. The pocketknife didn't seem to have the knife pulled out of it either. It looked like he got stabbed by the part of the knife where the pliers come out.
What I've learned from my experience of handling pocketknives is that whenever you start opening the pocketknife, (the one that has all of the tools in it) the pliers come out first for some reason and you have to manually pull the actural knife out in order to use it. It seemed that the killer didn't have enough time to pull the knife part out, and had to use what was already there to his advantage in such a short amount of time.
Sarah, when she noticed, immediately screamed at the top of ther lungs, which didn't seem like her but seemed appropriate at the time, and kind of cool. I set the man face down on the ground.
"Watch him," I told Sarah.
I got up and leapt over the man and landed in between his legs, kicking and almost tripping over his foot in order to get into the hallway. I was feeling a little lightheaded
I think I heard Sarah mumble something like "Where are you going?"
I didn't respond to whatever she just said. I kept walking down the hall, making every step have purpose of its own, holding onto the hallway sides for support because of my head feeling so light, for this is something I never get to do, or have ever done, and I'll probably never get to do it again in the near future.
I burst the door open, being instantly marauded by the bellowing wind, pulling the heavy rain along with it. My tie, drenched and wet, ran up and instantly slapped me in the face from the force of the storm, like getting hit in the face with a wet noodle, whatever that feels like.
All of a sudden, I start losing my balance; my knees got wobbly. The buildings and bright lights in front of me started to swirl, a darkness closing in on me. Am I actually going to faint, right here on the front steps of my job? Right when there is someone who need me, some action in my life, I fall on the middle of the sidewalk? Well, I did. All I remember doing was looking down at the sidewalk and seeing it get bigger and bigger and bigger. Everything was getting blurry and hazy, and right before I hit the ground, when I was so close to the cement I could taste it, my life flashed before my eyes. And then, darkness.
Raleigh, North Carolina
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