Log in

No account? Create an account

Previous Entry | Next Entry

Andrew entered his room and stripped away his bloody shirt.  He had wrapped his hand in ice to keep down the swelling, but he felt no pain.

In his mind's eye, he kept replaying what had happened.  He had been in control.  Phillip was no threat, not until the gun came out.  Then Andrew's survival instinct had kicked in.  Like during the war, his training had taken over.  He could have killed Phillip easily.  He almost did.

Why the bloody hell did Phillip even have a gun?  In all the time Andrew had lived with the man or visited the house, he had never seen Phillip with a gun.  He would have sworn the man didn't know the first thing about guns, except how to tell the prop guys to pass them out.

None of it made any sense.  Andrew closed his eyes and leaned back so he was lying on top of the bed.  His mind continued to race.  With his eyes closed, he kept seeing the barrel of Phillip's gun pointing in his direction.  He snapped his eyes opened and just stared up.  Watching the ceiling was better.

Andrew had no idea how long he remained like that -- eyes open, staring at the ceiling -- before he heard a knock on the door.  He sat up, surprised that his forearm was drenched from melted ice.  The door opened and Marlena leaned inside.

"The police are here," she said, softly.  "They have some questions.  Your mother's talking to them now."

He nodded, tossing the wet towel to the floor.  He flexed his hand.  It was swollen and he probably should have been feeling some pain, but he still felt nothing.  From the range of motion, at least, he figured nothing too important was broken.  Andrew walked over to a set of drawers, opened the top drawer, and fished inside until he found his leather-bound ISA credentials.  That would help with the police.  Then he turned, intending to follow Marlena downstairs.

"Andy," she said, her voice rising.  "My god."  At his confused look, she pointed at him.  "Your side."

Andrew looked down to see blood running freely from a spot just under his ribs.  Where had that come from?  He looked closer.  The wound was mostly superficial.  There also was an angry red line that ran across his abs.  He glanced back at the bedspread to see a dark stain where he had been lying.

Marlena gasped.  "He shot you."

That seemed the logical explanation.  Andrew could not remember the shot and, even now, the wound didn't hurt.  He looked at the gash again.  "I think it's just a graze," he said, finally finding his voice.  "It's nothing."  He picked up the towel again, wiped the blood from the wound, and walked past her to the staircase.

As he walked down the stairs, he made a conscious decision to relax.  He breathed deeply a couple of times and rolled back his shoulders to loosen them up.  At he reached the bottom, he could see two men in dark sport coats sitting opposite Kim.  One had a notepad out and was taking a statement.

"Detectives," Andrew said, making it sound as casual as possible.

Both of the detectives turned toward him.  The man not taking the notes stood up and spoke.  "Are you Andrew Donovan?"

"I am," he said calmly.  He held his arms away from his body and glanced at Kim.  "Perhaps we could talk about this outside.  I assume you'll want to look at the scene."  He knew the officers would agree.  It was common police practice to keep witnesses apart, to prevent them from comparing notes.  Andrew's ISA training had taught him to do the same.

The standing officer nodded, and the seated one turned to Kim, suggesting they finish her interview after they had both talked to Andrew.  That was also standard procedure -- make sure a suspect was always outnumbered.  Andrew walked past the broken screen door to the courtyard and waited for the detectives to follow him.  The entire time, he kept his arms out away from his body.  No reason to make the police nervous.

"You've done this before," one of the men said as Andrew came to a stop a reasonable distance from the door.

Andrew tried not to chuckle.  There was no point annoying the police.  "Not like you think, Detective."  He lowered his voice so only the officers could hear him.  "I'm ISA.  My credentials are in my back left pocket, but my mother doesn't know about that, so I would appreciate your not mentioning it.  Perhaps you could make it like you're just reading my ID after a pat down."

"ISA," one of the officers said, with a shake of his head.  "You seem a little young to be playing spy."  He walked toward Andrew warily, as the other stood a few feet farther away, ready to draw his sidearm in case his suspect attacked.  Andrew stayed calm and waited as the detective did a cursory pat down, pulled out the piece of leather and flipped it open.  "Well what do you know, Stanley, he's telling the truth."

"Let me see that, Jenkins."  The officer who performed the search tossed them to his partner.  The other detective -- Stanley -- took a look at the credentials inside.  "This looks legit."

Both policemen immediately relaxed.  Their tones of voice also changed.  "You understand, Mr. Donovan, that we're required to check out any complaint."

Andrew nodded as Stanley handed him back his wallet and he returned it to his pocket. "Of course, gentlemen.  So what would you like to know?"

"Why don't you tell us what happened?"

Andrew nodded and took them through the fight up until Phillip pulled the gun.  He showed them the broken screen door and explained how Phillip had tried to force his way into the house.

"I was just trying to get him to leave when Phillip pulled out a 9 mm," he then said.

"And you knocked the gun away?" Jenkins asked.

Andrew was not sure how to answer.  From the point of Phillip pulling the gun, everything was a bit hazy.  But then he remembered picking up a gun and emptying it of ammunition.  "Yes."

"Looks like he got a shot off."  Stanley pointed to Andrew's side.

"Yeah."  He looked down again.  The wound was still bleeding.  Why don't I feel it? Andrew wondered.  "It's just a crease.  I guess he managed to get a shot off while I was knocking the gun away.  After that, I took him down."  Andrew looked around the courtyard and walked over to where he had been fighting Phillip, trying to remember.  "I think I was about here."  He turned his body into the position it would have been if he had kicked someone and began walking in a straight line from that spot to the outer wall of the house.

"What are you doing?" Stanley asked.

"Just trying to figure out the trajectory of the bullet."  Andrew examined the wall closely and spotted a hole.  "I think you'll find the slug in there."

The detectives walked over and looked at the hole, agreeing with Andrew's assessment.  While they examined the hole, Andrew asked about Phillip's condition.  A broken nose, cracked orbital bone, multiple contusions and a painful day or two of detox ahead of him.  Couldn't happen to a nicer man, Andrew thought.

"I hope you gentlemen can see that this was a case of self-defense," Andrew said.  "I don't know what he would have done if he had gotten into the house.  Drunk like that, with a gun."

Both of the detectives were nodding.  Good.

"Speaking of which," Andy added.  "Did Phillip say why he had a gun?  I've never seen him with one before."

Jenkins replied.  "Just said he had it for protection."

"Who needs a gun for a funeral?" Andrew wondered aloud.  "Anyway, do you have anything else to ask?  I'm sure my Aunt Marlena will confirm what I just said.  She saw it all."

"I think that's everything," Jenkins said.  He studied Andrew carefully.  "How much longer are you in town?"

Andrew shrugged.  "My Mum--"  He stopped, and deliberately corrected himself in American English. " I mean, my mom's fighting cancer and has a bone marrow transplant scheduled soon.  I'm helping take care of her."

"Let me give you some advice," Stanley said.  "Keep your nose clean while you're here.  And watch your back.  Phillip Collier has a lot of friends in this town."  Then he added cryptically, "Some of them don't play particularly nice."