- Jumped (a short story)
By Cynthia L. Hall
The lights went out and Frank dove for his gun. He tried to remember in his mind its exact location. He could not recall a time in his career when he had ever surrendered his weapon, but seeing Kim with the blood streaming down her face from the gash in her head had made him feel like there was no other option. She would be dead if he wouldn’t have done what Holland said. He had been ordered earlier to drop his gun and kick it across the room.
“Frank,” Kim screamed.
He didn’t answer. He was on the ground, sliding to his destination. A crushing blow came to his hand as he reached forward for the gun, he must have missed and hit the desk leg. He reached with outstretched finger tips, his eyes open as wide as they could go, but it was impossible to see anything in the pitch black room. That was okay, it meant Holland couldn’t see anything either. His hand searched for the metal object.
Commotion came from inside the room and Frank had to assume Holland was on his way to stop him. Sure enough, Holland landed on top of him and Frank’s chin hit the floor—hard. He struggled to keep moving forward to the gun, Holland’s weight slowing him down. He thought the gun was on the other side of the desk, between the desk and the office chair. He needed to get his body under the desk. First, he had to get clear of Holland.
Holland punched at his head, pulling back on Frank’s outstretched arm. Frank thrust his body as hard as he could in order to throw Holland from his back. He poked at Holland’s throat. If he could get one good jab in, he could stop Holland temporarily, giving him time to get
the gun. He missed and had to try again. Still no luck. He gave a punch to Holland’s rib cage. He missed and hit a solid body part, maybe his abs. He jabbed again. He had to stop Holland from whacking at his head. Frank managed to get a hold on Holland’s shirt by the collar and began punching at his face. He felt wetness; he must have gotten a knuckle to nose. He continued to hit the same area. Holland slapped at Frank, like in a girl fight. Frank thought Holland might be losing his bearings and starting to panic. Frank took advantage the situation trying to get to his feet, hauling Holland with him. He knew he would have more power on his feet than lying on his back. Holland struggled to get free, but Frank was relentless and didn’t let go.
“Frank, I have the gun,” Kim cried out.
“Here, over here,” He shouted.
From the sound of her voice, Kim was on the other side of the desk. If Frank let go of Holland to reach for the gun, Holland would have the chance to get away. He had to hold onto Holland, defend himself, and get his gun from Kim.
Excruciating pain radiated throughout his head. He took an unexpected blow to his left ear and was instantly lightheaded and felt like throwing up. He snapped back when he felt his hand loosing grip on Holland’s shirt. Holland grunted and Frank heard a clinking sound. Frank thought Holland must have grabbed something heavy from the desk. Even in the dark, it was easy for Frank to realize a second thrust was on its way. He stopped Holland’s arm just before he was about to get a paperweight blow to the side of his head.
Holland grunted again while twisting his arm free. It’s funny how strong someone can become when they are fighting for their life. With all the strength Frank could muster, he lifted his knee and connected with Holland’s groin. Holland doubled over and winced with pain. Frank didn’t wait and rushed right at him for another attack. He pulled Holland up by his collar again and punched at this face. Holland raised his arms to shield his face. Frank felt this and focused on lower punches, jabbing at Holland’s ribs. On the third draw-back his elbow connected with something behind him, something that wasn’t there on the first two thrusts. It had to be Kim. Without letting go of Holland’s shirt, Frank swung around, feeling for her and the gun.
“Frank, is that you?” she asked.
“Give me the gun.”
Kim held the handgun out toward Frank’s voice with both her hands. He felt it at shoulder height and grabbed it with his free hand. With a firm hold on Holland, he snapped around, pointing the gun downward in Holland’s direction.
“I’ve got the gun, Holland. This fight’s over. Get to your feet, and do it nice and slow.” Frank took a long and much needed deep breath.
Holland did as Frank instructed, rising slowly to his feet. Frank followed him with the gun held at Holland’s cheek.
“Don’t make a move or the gun goes off.”
This was a close moment in the darkness. Without sight, Frank was unable to detect if Holland was going to make a play for the gun, or his gun arm. He wanted Holland to know he would shoot if he felt the slightest attempt. Sweat trickled down Frank’s forehead and into his eyes. The salty fluid stung and he wanted to wipe them, but he didn’t have a free hand. He felt Kim close behind him.
The lights flickered, on, then off again. On the fourth flicker they stayed on for good. He could see Holland’s beat up, bloody frame in front of him.
“It’s over Holland,” he said relieved. “You are under arrest for the abduction and attempted murder of Detective Kim Weston. Turn around and place your hands behind your back.”
Holland didn’t put up a fuss and did as ordered. Frank pulled his handcuffs from his belt and placed them tightly on Holland’s wrists. He didn’t want to let go of Holland in case the lights went out again. He kept one hand on Holland’s shoulder, and his other hand with the gun, pointed at Holland’s head.
“You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say, can, and will be used against you in a court of law…”
Frank moved Holland forward and down the hallway to the staircase quickly, worrying that the lights might go out again in the abandoned building, He continued with the Miranda Rights on the way to the cruiser. Once Holland was locked in the backseat he focused his attention on Kim.
He gently took her arm and led her to his unmarked car. He had a blanket in the trunk for emergencies and put it around Kim. He helped her into the passenger seat. He moved around to the driver’s side and reached inside for the radio microphone. He called for help, then went to check on Officer Thornton who had come earlier as back-up. Before they entered the building earlier, Frank had heard a shot outside the building. Holland had fired at Thornton from inside the building. Frank found Officer Thornton dead. Now Holland would be charged with his murder, along with the attempted murder of his partner Kim. Frank returned to the car to check on his partner.
“You all right?”
“Let me see that head of yours.” He gently pulled back Kim’s hair to look at the wound. That’s a nasty gash on your head.”
“I really messed this up.”
“This wasn’t your fault.”
“I should have waited for back-up when I saw him in the restaurant.”
“He would have taken off. You did the right thing.”
“And I let him get the jump on me.”
“It happens to the best of us.”
“Has it ever happened to you?”
“No, but I have twenty-five years of experience as a cop, then a detective.”
“And I don’t.”
“You’re learning.” Frank smiled.
“You going to ask for a new partner?”
“What, are you kidding me? And deprive me of all this fun? Not on your life. We’ll be together for the next twenty-five.”
“Oh, I hope not.” Kim snickered. “No offense, but that would make you…”
“Let’s not go there. Hey look, here come the Chief.”
“Don’t try to change the subject.” Kim laughed. “But seriously, thanks for all you did.”
“No problem, all in a day’s work. Now get your game face on. He’ll be firing a lot of questions at you.”
“I’m ready.”Read more »
- The author Graham Brown
Graham Brown is a fairly new author and one of my favorites. The two pictures above are both Graham Brown; one is an actor, one is an author. Without using the internet, can you guess which one is the author? Is the author Graham Brown on the right, or is he on the left?
I first stumbled on Graham Brown when I was looking for a thriller to read and since I haven’t ever read a Clive Cussler book I decided to go that route. I chose one that was co-authored with Brown; Zero Hour. Loved it!
Then I looked for a book authored only by Brown and found Black Rain. Loved it. I am currently reading Black Sun and of course, loving it. He co-authored some other books with Cussler, Devil’s Gate and The Storm. He also co-authored with Spencer Andrews. I’m gonna go out on a short limb here and guess that Cussler co-authored with Brown because he saw his potential. What a great way to break into the writing world. I will note that on the Cussler books, Brown’s name is smaller, and the co-authored book with Andrews, Brown’s name is in bigger print. So I googled Spencer Andrews, no stand alone books…,yet. I think I need to find a famous author friend.
Anyway, if thriller’s are your thing, you might like Brown. I think he shows great potential. But before you look him up, can you tell me which picture is the author Graham Brown?
- Third world maybe, paradise definitely!
My husband and I celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary (10 years ago) somewhere different. We had been to beautiful beaches, relaxing lakes, and romantic get-a-ways, and didn’t want to do-over any of those things. Friends of ours had just returned from Ambergris Caye, Belize and remarked about what a unique vacation experience it had been. We listened to their story, did some checking, and booked a vacation. I expected a tropical Caribbean experience, what I didn’t expect was that this small, understated island would have some of the finest restaurants in the Caribbean. On our first night in town, my husband ordered one of the acclaimed Rum drinks; rum drinks are widely noted throughout the Caribbean. I ordered my usual drink and after that night, began a contest on my own to search for the best Bloody Mary on the island.
Ambergris Caye is the largest of some 450 cayes off the coastline of Belize in the Caribbean Sea. The narrow island is about a half mile wide and 25 miles long. It is peppered with unassuming cabanas, beach villas and other potential lodging. Just off the coast lies 190 miles of Barrier Reef, the second largest living coral reef in the world, enticing diving and snorkeling enthusiasts to visit.
Today, there is only one inhabited town on the island, San Pedro, home to approximately 5000 Sanpedranos, whose main income is tourism. Sanpedranos have their own dialect which is a mix of Spanish, English, Creole, and Maya. Once primarily inhabited by the great Maya Indians, the country of Belize was a major source of trade for the surrounding countries of Mexico and Guatemala. The Mayans inhabited Belize from about 2000 B.C. to about 1000 A.D. During the Caste War, Mayan, Mexican, and European Pirates fled to the cayes to start a new life.
Coconut farms sprouted and the fishing industry became the major incomes for Ambergris Caye. To accommodate trading, the Mayans dug a narrow channel at the northern tip of Ambergris Caye, separating the caye from Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula. In the 1980’s, people began to flock to Ambergris and the other cayes to discover the amazing wonders of the Barrier Reef. Tourism exploded and remains the main income for Ambergris Caye today.
Islanders offer guided diving tours, charter fishing trips, a variety of water sports, unique shopping, and some of the finest dining experiences available today. Let’s not forget flora, fauna, fresh air, beautiful beaches and breathtaking vistas of the Caribbean Sea. The cayes are host to a variety of lodging selections including, privately owned condotels, vacation home rentals, time shares, beach front resorts, something to suit everyone’s needs.
Where you stay on Ambergris Caye might depend on what type of adventure you’re looking for. Looking for something secluded or romantic? Do you want to be close to San Pedro and the nightlife? Or perhaps a day of pampering after a long day in the surf and sun is more appealing. If you’re looking for privacy, head to the south end of the island. For a more remote stay altogether, head to the North. Family friendly accommodations are sprinkled around the center of the island and around the town of San Pedro. It’s hard to believe that there are more than 100 bungalows tucked in and about the island. These well hidden pearls are not visible on first glance; there are not tall signs or billboards shouting out there whereabouts on the island, and that’s the beauty of it.
Back to the food, yes, best I have eaten to this day in my lifetime. We ate in one restaurant with a dirt floor and that was probably one of the best meals. I did find the perfect Bloody Mary, and for some reason I can’t remember the name of the restaurant, but if I ever went to the island again, I am sure I would discover it again.Read more »
- Once in awhile I get inspired;
Foundation, Investment, and Return
“Build on the foundation of the apostles and prophets with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.” Ephesians 2:20-22
In the movie Field of Dreams, Kevin Costner’s character, Ray Kinsella is driven by a higher power to build a baseball field in the middle of his cornfield so that people who have passed on from this earthly life, people who made sacrifices, can be united on a ball field to fulfill a passion. Kinsella is asked to react to a calling much like what we read from apostles and prophets, using Christ as his chief cornerstone.
As in the movie, our “higher power” has been calling out to us. God is looking for individuals who will worship Him. He asks people to come together to praise Him, hear the word, and share our gifts, talents, passions and experiences with one another. He calls out to us to invest in our church so that we may worship as one and be a “holy temple in the Lord.”
Because Christ is essential for all growth, we build with faith, not fear. Mr. Kinsella did the same in the movie. He built his ball field with faith, not fear, without means and battling other obstacles. His return on his investment, well it’s best to see the movie, but it is much like the last line in the scripture. “And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.” There is no better return that when we are all together and moved by His Spirit. No greater feeling on earth, no greater return.
“If You Build It, They Will Come”
Our Father in Heaven, guide us with your wisdom to grow together as one people, with a solid foundation. Help us to invest in ways that will build a solid future for our world and its people. Use your spirit to bring all people close together, to worship you, and to reach out to people everywhere to become a part of your holy temple. Let us move forward with faith, not fear. In your son Jesus’ name we pray. Amen
Cindy HallRead more »
- Just back from St. John
We just got home from one wonderful week in St. John USVI. I love that little island, all 20 square-miles of it. I love the beaches, the food, the hair-pin turns in the extremely hilly roads, the geckos, the wild donkey that roam free, the crabs, the ocean fish that you can see clearly because the water there is crystal clear in the ocean, the deer, and flora and fauna. Yep, love it to death. I don’t even mind slathering on the sunscreen at the beginning of every day and showering it off at the end of the day. Sunsets, driving on the left side of the road, Painkillers, fresh seafood, views beyond belief, and locals that always smile.
I’m sure in the next couple of months I will blog in detail about certain aspects of the island. You will get a better understanding about why my first book had to be placed on St. John.
Painkillers, but he way, are island drinks made with the local rum. St. John’s heritage started with the Indian inhabitants as far back as 700 BC. The Danes settled around 1675 then colonized d 1717, establishing Coral Bay at the east end of de island, (and our favorite part as far as staying there). By 1733 the Danish and the Dutch established businesses consisting of sugar, tobacco and cotton. Donkeys were used as work-horses and were eventually left on the island to breed and become “wild”. But that didn’t happen until after the rebellion of the slaves that were living there in appalling conditions and used as work-horses as well. In 1733 the slaves rebelled and went on a terrible killing spree, killing the island’s top magistrate followed by killing the soldiers at the fort at Coral Bay and the plantations masters that sought refuge at the fort. After the emancipation, black and white residents settled on small farms.
The US purchased St. John, known as the Danish West Indies, in 1917. Then in the 1950’s Laurance Rockefeller built Caneel Bay Resort on 170 acres, then donated the remainder of his holdings back to the government for development of a national park. President Eisenhower established the Virgin Island National Park in 1956, which now covers two-thirds of the island.
Just last Wednesday night, Randy and I had dinner on Caneel Bay Resort beach by tiki torch light as the sun went down. Ahhhhhhh…..
Bellow are some interesting links for you! Enjoy your stay :)