“What kind of pansy-ass…”
It goes against everything I know about conduct with police officers, but I step out of my Dodge pick-up and walk over to the officer. He’s now sobbing uncontrollably.
“Easy.” I continue to creep carefully. “Hands up, don’t shoot!” I say with a laugh, hoping to get a rise out from him. He doesn’t even react.
I’m within feet of him now. His chin is in his chest as he looks downward at his gun. He’s shaking it erratically in his lap.
“Why don’t you put that gun back in its holster, Officer?”
“No, no. Everything is not alright!” He waves the gun as he screams.
I take a step back. I swear if he were any person besides a police officer, I’d grab that gun away from him.
“I can’t do this anymore, Phillip.” He says, then turns away.
My brain starts to spin, but then I realize he has my driver’s license. “Hey, relax, it’s okay.”
“No, it’s not. You won’t let me sleep, so what’s the point?”
He points the gun at me. I dodge the shot by smacking his wrist with my forearm. I drop back a step then go sprinting toward a front lawn. Another gunshot rings out and I dive. I lie on my stomach with my hands on my head.
I open my eyes and look up. The scream came from a little girl – she points at something behind me.
I whirl around.
“Jesus,” I say.
The police officer blew his own head off. Chunks of brain litter the pavement behind his bike, along with a fresh red pond.
Neighbors exit their homes. I have no idea what’s going on, but they won’t stop asking me. Then someone realizes there’s an officer down, and I’m the guy he pulled over.
“Stay there!” yells a middle-aged woman. She points a plunger at me.
“I can’t,” I mumble. “I didn’t, I don’t know what-”
A familiar ring – my cell phone, sitting in my driver’s seat. Loretta’s calling! I stand, sprint over, fling my dented door open, and rush to answer.
- Thomas M. Watt