I have reworked the first part of the story with a few new elements about the characters and changed a few of the details of how the characters finish up in the shop before the policewoman makes her entrance.
This is part of the new first section is the one that involves Annalisa, and her boyfriend, Simmo:
Annalisa looked at the two men facing her.
Simmo, the boy on the floor, had told her that the shopkeeper would be a pushover, he was an old man who’d just hand over the drugs, rather than cause trouble for himself.
Where Simmo had discovered what the shopkeeper’s true vocation, dispensing drugs to the neighborhood addicts, she didn’t know, but it was not the first place like this they had visited.
She had always known Simmo had a problem, but he had assured her he had it under control. Until a month ago, when he had tried something new.
It had changed him.
The breaking point came earlier that day when, seeing how sick he was, she threatened to leave. It brought out the monster within him, and he threatened to kill her. Not long after he had changed into a whimpering child pleading with her to stay, that he hadn’t meant anything he’d said before.
All he needed was one more ‘score’ to get his ‘shit’ together, and he would do as she asked, and find help.
She believed him.
He said he knew a place not far from the apartment, a small shop where what he needed was available, and said he had the money.
That should have been the first sign he was not telling the truth because she had been funding his habit until her parents cut off the money supply. She suspected her father had put a private detective on to find her, had, and reported back, and rather than make a scene, just cut her off so she would have to come home or starve. Her father was no better than Simmo.
And, as soon as they stepped into the shop, Simmo pulled out the gun,
Instead of the shopkeeper cowered like Simmo said he would, he had laughed at them and told them to get out. Simmo started ranting and waving the gun around, then all of a sudden collapsed.
There was a race for the gun which spilled out of Simmo’s hand, and she won.
That was just before the customer burst into the shop.
It had been shortly before closing time. Simmo had said there would be no one else around.
Now she had another problem to deal with, a man who was clearly as scared shitless as she was.
This was worse than any bad hair day, or getting out of the wrong side of bed day, this was, she was convinced, the last day of her life.
She heard a strange sound come from beside her and looked down. There was a trickle of blood coming out of his mouth and Simmo was making strange sounds like he was choking.
Any other time she might have been concerned, but the hard reality of it was, Simmo was never going to change. She was only surprised at the fact it took so long for her to realize it.
As for the man standing in front of her, she was safe from the shopkeeper with him around, so he would have to stay.
Another glance at the shopkeeper told her she had made the right decision, his expression said it all. Gun or no gun, the moment she was alone with him, he would kill her.
© Charles Heath 2016-2020