Daily Flash Fiction Challenge 73: Mutual Defence

This is the 73rd in a series of 365 Flash Fiction stories I’m writing. You can find out more about the challenge here.

Mutual Defence, by Jonathan L. Lawrence, 12th February 2013

Word count: 935

The story:
“How does it feel to have cracked the case?”

“I’ve felt better,” Jack Maisey said, his hand pressed against the wound in his side.

“I’m sure you have kid, I’m sure you have,” the MP said crouching low, cleaning the knife wound with the contents of a first aid kit he’d brought down with him. “You’re going to need stitches.”

“Yep,” the young private detective said, “If I live long enough.”

“Don’t be so melodramatic, of course your going to live, I’m not a cold blooded killer,” the MP pressed an absorbent pad into the wound.

“Aren’t you worried I’ll send you down?”

“No, I’m a trusting soul. especially  when people’s self interest is at stake. Remember, Mister Maisey, as you think you’ve got on me. It’s on both our interests to leave this place alive, and never mention a word of it again. Understand?” the MP said, pulling the detective to his feet.

“Yeah, I understand,” Jack said. “Okay if we go left at that corner we can make our way out.”

“The quickest way would be back that way,” the MP pointed with his free arm.

“And that’s where they’re waiting for us both, in force.”

“Good point, onwards it is,” the MP said, half dragging the detective.

They made slow progress through the abandoned school, but they didn’t see anyone.

They got to the rear doors. “Wait,” Jack said stopping, “It could be a trap.”

“I’ve had plenty of opportunity to kill you Mister Maisey,” the MP said.

“Not you, them. They’re covering the exits,” Jack said.

“What do we do,” asked the MP alarmed.

“I have a plan, but we’ll need to trust each other, and we don’t have long the police will be here shortly,” the detective said.

The police did arrive quickly, they were met by a hail of gunfire which had them ducking for cover.

The men guarding the exits entered the school, seeking a better defensive position, and to find their quarries before the police could.

Jack pried open the window, hating every creak and break, worried the attackers would hear it.

They crawled out, which was one of the most painful experiences of Jack’s life. Out on the school playground they made their way to where the police were gathered.

“On the ground,” an officer shouted indicating with his tazer.

Gun fire rattled from the school building.

“What the hell is going on?” the police officer shouted at the two figures on the ground.

“My name is Robert Dixon, MP for Solihull. This gentleman needs an ambulance he saved my life, he’s been stabbed,” the MP said, helping the private detective forward into deeper cover, and closer to the policeman. “Those men in there tried to kidnap me.”

“Okay, the policeman said, grabbing his radio, and indicating his partner to come over.

Just then a helicopter flew in low and fast, narrowly missing phone cables as it passed. It put down on the far side of the school building away from the police.

“Backup and armed units are on their way,” the police officer said, opening up Jack’s shirt to look at the wound.

“Get me a first aid kit,” he shouted back to his partner, “An ambulance is on its way too.”

“Good good,” the MP said crouching then ducked as more gun fire shot out.

“Who are they?” the policeman asked.

“I don’t know,” the MP lied.

“How long has he been unconscious?” the officer asked, redressing the wound.

“What?” the MP asked looking back, he thought he’d heard the helicopter change pitch. “He was just awake a moment ago. He got me out.”

“I’m doing my best for him,” the policeman said, trying to stop the fresh bleeding that was coming from under the bandage he had applied.

“I think they’re leaving,” the MP said ducking back down to help.

The police man looked up, and saw the helicopter lifting off. “Get on to control,” he instructed his partner needlessly, he was already on the radio. The police officer switched his attention back to his patient as the helicopter sped away.

Two days later the MP walked into a hospital room, passed two police guards. He shut the door behind him as he entered.

“Heard you’d woken up, finally.”

“Yeah,” Jack said, “I wake up from the coma, and that suit is still in fashion. I’m amazed.”

“This is no time for jokes,” the MP said seriously. “You know why I’m here.”

“Yeah, sorry about not being around to do my part, coma and all you understand?”

“Of course I do, stop being a baffoon. I told the police what we agreed, answered their questions as best I could,” the MP said, “It’s upto you now to convince them of your part in this, and then we can put this behind us.”

“They’re coming to see me later,” Jack said, “I’m concerned about the guard outside.”

“That’s because the police think it’s a highly sophisticated and organised group, potentially terrorists and you might still be at risk,” the MP said.

“So everything’s good?” Jack asked.

“Absolutely, just keep to the story and you’ll be a hero, and me the brave victim. We’re actually better off,” Dixon said.

“For now,” Jack said, “But remember I found out, someone else will too.”

“Oh I’m seeing to correcting past mistakes, have no worries,” Dixon said turning to leave. At the door he turned back, “Get better soon Mister Maisey.”

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