Copyright© 2011 Angharad
All Rights Reserved.
I ran to help Stella shut the door between us we slammed it shut and I turned the key in the mortise. Next I ran to the cloakroom and quickly shut the little window. Kiki started barking and Tom went to check the conservatory. He grabbed the dog and I hauled him back inside the French windows, which I locked. They were made of toughened glass, but by no means impregnable.
I rushed upstairs calling Danny to come with me, he flew up behind me, “Check there are no open windows, shut them and lock them.” He nodded and dashed off. “Pull the curtains too,” I called after him.
I checked a couple of rooms he was already running up to the next level and I followed on behind him. Anytime now I expected the phone lines to be cut and then something to blow the electrics.
Everything was secured. I ran downstairs to hear Stella on the phone to someone. “I tell you we’re under attack, I don’t know from whom, if I did I’d have told you. I told you my name, Cameron, yes like the Prime Minister, and my first name is Stella. Catherine, yes she’s my sister in law—oh you’ll send someone, well make it snappy we have women and children here—what—don’t let my sister in law run amok until you get here? Stupid man,” she switched off her phone.
Mine rang. I picked it up. “Cathy, will you open the bloody door.”
It was Simon, well I didn’t see what sort of car it was. “Are you okay?”
“Of course I am, why shouldn’t I be?”
“James seemed to think there was someone lurking.”
“Catherine West, just open this bloody door will you?”
West? There was something wrong, he was trying to warn me. Oh Geez what do I do now? If I leave the door shut he might get killed if I let him in and there is someone with him, we could all get killed. Tom appeared with his shotgun and stuffed two cartridges in it. Someone could shoot him before he got a chance to aim it especially if they used Simon as a shield. Why did he have to come home now? Was he actually out there? He could be, he might be calling from another planet for all I knew.
I stopped the call and called him back—engaged. I waited and dialled again I could hear his phone from the other side of the door. He answered it. “C’mon, Baby, let me in it’s freezing out here it’s no more than three degrees.”
So there were three of them—did that include him? I doubted it.
I told Stella to inform the police that we thought they had Simon hostage. I called him again, pretending to fumble with the lock then I swore loudly. I called him back, “Sorry, darling, the key has broken in the lock. We’ll have to use the back door, make sure you wipe your feet carefully.”
I ran round to the back door and switched off the lights, then I removed the inspection cover from just inside the door—goodness it was heavy. Tom stationed himself with shotgun inside the cellar steps Stella and Julie took all the children and went upstairs to my room and went under my bed. I grabbed the first weapons which seemed suitable, a large knife and my meat tenderising mallet.
To imagine the scene, I’m standing by the door to the side of it, I’m going to pull the door open and stay behind it, Tom is lying down on the cellar steps which are the other side of the door, so he should have a clear shot at whoever comes through it. I whispered, “On three,” I counted one and two then pulled open the door, shouting three as I did so. Simon was pushed in and he dived as far into the house as he could. The first man in behind him was too quick for Tom, but in his haste he fell down the hole left by the inspection cover and Tom fired at the second.
In almost the same instant, I slammed the door shut and whacked the bloke on the head. He groaned so I hit him again, he slumped and I locked the door.
Simon hauled himself up and picked up the man’s gun. We dragged him out of the inspection hole and into the kitchen. He had a nasty head wound and his legs were bleeding. Simon tied his hands behind him with a cable tie and I washed his head wound and wrapped a bandage round it, then I tore up a couple of tea towels and wrapped up his bleeding shins.
“Compassion for the enemy—ever the saint, Cathy.” Simon remarked as I finished my rapid first aid.
“Not really, I didn’t want blood on my hall carpet.”
“Oh,” he stepped aside for Tom to come through.
“Did you get him?”
“I wisnae tryin’ tae dae mair than freeten him.”
A minute later, a burst of gunfire hit the back door. We all ran towards the centre of the house, Tom coming last reloading his shotgun as we went.
In the distance we heard sirens and a helicopter overhead. The cavalry were on their way. I checked the prisoner, he was still breathing and bleeding—least his legs were. I tore up another tea towel and tried to make pressure bandages from them.
I heard cars speed into the drive and saw blue flashing lights through the curtains. The police were here. Two minutes later, the door was knocked and the police were indeed here.
I checked through the letter box, it was the real thing, and I opened the door to an armed response unit. “Not you again?” said the officer in charge, “Who’s trying to kill you this week?”
“We got one of them, perhaps you’d like to ask him?”
An armed policeman stayed at the door carrying a small automatic machine gun thing—I don’t know what you call them, but at least while he was there no one was coming in.
“What happened to him?”
“I removed the inspection cover inside the backdoor and he fell down it and banged his head.”
“He fell forwards and banged the back of his head?”
“Yeah, I s’pose,” I said innocently having placed the mallet in the sink.
He called for an ambulance and asked Tom if he had a licence for the shotgun. Tom showed him chapter and verse. Then he examined the back door after I’d put the inspection cover back on.
“Some trap,” he observed looking into the three foot drop inside it. Then he examined the bullet holes in the door. “No one else hurt?”
“Okay, we’ll need statements.”
The man on the floor began groaning and puked on the floor, the copper went pale and walked hurriedly out of the kitchen. I got some paper towels and wiped it up. We sat him up against a chair. He was still groaning.
Simon handed the copper the gun the man had dropped when I clobbered him. “He actually dropped this?”
“Bloody hell, you’re lucky to be alive—this thing will shoot through walls.”
“May we keep it then, could be useful for dealing with cockroaches.” I said innocently. Just then more sirens and two paramedics arrived with a stretcher, they wheeled the man away ten minutes later after strapping him to the stretcher thing. They complained about his hands being tied until the copper showed them the gun he’d been carrying. They went quiet and took the prisoner away.
“Shouldn’t the ambulance have an escort in case they try to free him?” I asked.
“Yeah, there’s an armed officer in the van with them.”
It was over an hour and several mugs of tea later that the police decided that whoever they were, they’d scarpered. A car was seen driving off at speed, but the chopper was told to keep checking out the house and the grounds for any further gunmen. There weren’t any, but they did see a badger.
“Aye, we puit food oot fer him each nicht,” said Tom smiling.
Finally the police left after some board was secured to the back door to hide the bullet holes.
An hour after that, just as we were going to bed, the phone rang and Chas and Dave had arrived.
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