Chapter 1: Across the Line

1008 Words
Chapter 1: Across the Line Andrew Fray POV: I sat hunched behind a stack of shipping pallets, feeling the cool of the concrete floor beneath me, listening to the sounds around me. Gunfire and shouting. The sounds of a gang war. The first one for me to be caught in. I knew this would have happened to me eventually but at this point I was more surprised it had taken so long than anything else. Seriously, in five years of working for my boss, I hadn't had so much as a gun pointed at me much less fired. My boss did show me his gun on my first day, but that was just to prove he meant business, and not entirely relevant to my immediate situation. What was relevant was getting myself and my package out of here. I'm a courier for Daniels' Shipping. Normally my job is straightforward, easy, and best of all, gun-free. I'm texted two addresses, one to pick up the package from, the other to deliver it to. I'm never told what the packages are, and I don't ask. I just want to move them from Point A to Point B, and if it comes up, Point C. Sometimes there's someone waiting for me, sometimes I can just leave it on the ground and walk away. Never have there been five, armed men waiting for me. And eight more people have definitely never crashed one of these parties before. That was how I ended up hiding behind the pallets. I wasn't getting paid to kill or be killed, so I was… I'm not going to say I was content to be hiding a few meters away from a gunfight, but that's the best way I can think to put it while I wait for the others to finish killing each other. “Fray! Where the hell are you!?" Shouted by someone much too close for my comfort. Aaaand that was my que to leave. None of the people I was expecting to meet me here should have been given my name, just like I wasn't given any of theirs. That meant whoever had shouted was one of the party crashers. I don't know how they knew who I was, but I knew for certain that I didn't want to find out. There was an open shipping door across the warehouse floor. That was how I got in; my car was parked close to the door. Unfortunately, that was where the party crashers had come from. I didn't know if there were more outside, or if my car was even safe anymore. For all I knew these guys had attached a tracking device or a car bomb before coming inside. As I sat there contemplating my next course of action, and maybe one or two of my life choices, something else began coming through the shipping door. The sound of police sirens followed by the flashes of blue and red. Can I not catch a break? The gunfire stopped, the cops took up positions outside the door, gave their spiel, and then the gunfire resumed. This time it was more or less directed away from me. That gave me the perfect opening to slip away, so I took it. There was an office space nestled in the far corner of the warehouse floor. I knew from experience that there would be a breakroom for truck drives there, and more importantly, a door for them. Fortunately for me you only needed a key to get out of the trucker's breakroom through the office. I got in and out. It was dark outside, and from where I was, I could see the lights of the police cruisers and other first responders. Even as I watched, a SWAT car pulled up and offloaded a small army. The sounds of gunfire experienced an appropriate increase. I doubted any non-cop inside the building was going to survive. Not my problem. My problem was that I still needed a way out of here. I couldn't take my car with this police presence, and I couldn't be found with the package on my person. There was a partial solution to the second problem though, a dumpster just a few meters from the door. That was where the package went. I considered hiding myself in the dumpster too, but it was filled with broken pallets and rusty nails. I didn't escape a gunfight just so I could get tetanus. I would find a place to lay low for the next few hours, tell the boss what happened, though he probably already knew, and get the package out of the dumpster. He would give me a new drop off, I would deliver the package the next time, get paid, and wait for the next delivery. Everything was going to go back to normal. Everything was going to be fine. That train of thought lasted until I rounded the corner of the warehouse when a pair of headlights came on. I staggered back, shielding my eyes from the light as best as I could. Lowering my hand enough to see, I could make out the set of lights on top of the police cruiser. Great. Just great. I was just planning to raise my hands when whoever was behind the wheel floored the gas. I managed to jump out of the way at the last second, but it was at that same second the car door flew open and collided with my side to put me on the ground. I rolled onto my back in time to see this crazy person get out of their car. My vision was recovering from the headlights, and I could make out that it was a woman standing over me. Squinting, I could make out the name 'Adams' on a nametag pinned to her uniform. I couldn't see her face, but I knew she was smiling as she spoke into her radio. “Sergeant, this is Constable Adams." She paused as if for dramatic effect. “I've got one."
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