“Trouble in Store” – Short stories my way: Adding more to the second part

The story fleshed out for the second section, discussed in Point of View


Annalisa looked at the two men facing her, a shopkeeper who, despite his protestations, was a dealer, and the other man, a customer scared shitless.

The poor bastard was not the only one scared. 

It was meant to be simple, arrive at the shop just before closing, force the shopkeeper to hand over the shit, and leave.

What had happened?

The shopkeeper 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.  No more arguments, the shopkeeper was getting the stuff when the customer burst into the shop.

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.

Her mother said she would never amount to anything, and here she was with a drug addict coming apart because she had been cut off from her money and could no longer pay for his supply, which had led them to this inevitable ending.

She heard a strange sound come from beside her and looked down.  Simmo was getting worse, like he had a fever, and was moaning.


If Alphonse had thought his day was going to get any better after the delivery disaster earlier that day, he was wrong.

If he thought he could maintain his real business and his under the counter business with no one finding out, in that he was wrong too.  He’s know, inevitably, some useless punk would come and do exactly what Simmo was doing.

It might have been salvageable before the customer came in the door, but now it was not.  The customer had heard the words, and given him ‘the look’.  A drug addict telling the cops he was a dealer, it was his word against an  unreliable addict, but this local chap, he had that air of respectability the cops would listen too.


But he had to try and salvage the situation, there was a lot of money involved, and other people depending on him.  He looked at the boy, on the floor, then  the girl.

“Listen to me, young lady, I have no idea what you are talking about.  Please, put the gun down before someone gets hurt.  Your friend needs medical help and I can call an ambulance.”

The girl switched her attention back to him.  “Shut up, let me think.  Shit.”

The storekeeper glanced over at the customer.  He’s been in once or twice, probably lived in the neighborhood, but looked the sort who’d  prefer to be anywhere but in his shop.  More so now.  If only he hadn’t burst in when he did.  He would have the gun, called the police, and brazened his way out of trouble.  Now, that remedy was off the table.

Now he had to deal with the fallout, especially if the girl started talking.




© Charles Heath 2016-2020

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