It took a few moments for Jenny to register what happened.
And even then, only the basics.
She was down.
And her head stung like a sonofabitch.
She stretched out her arms and legs.
They all responded; good.
She felt with her fingers and found her piece.
She grabbed for it-
-followed by her elbow being grabbed and throwing her balance off again.
The instant she stopped moving, she raised her gun in front of her as she took in the situation.
“Easy! Easy!” said Dutch, hands up. “They tried something when we tried to get off the boat.”
“What’s our count?” she asked.
“We’re all here, and we got the boxes.”
She looked behind her and saw Georgie manning the motor, gunning her hard. She did a quick head count, finding five more around her.
She focused on Tia, who was looking over the stern behind them as the center console was trying to pursue.
“It got nuts,” said Tomo. “They shoved you down, you hit your head, and they tried to grab Tia as a hostage.”
“So why didn’t you shoot?” Jenny asked.
“I didn’t want to hit her. Two of them were trying to hold her down, and she just fought ‘em off like crazy. They were still around her when she pulled you aboard, and Georgie gunned her to get away.”
“But I said shoot ‘em!”
“And hit you? C’mon, for real?”
Before Jenny could reply, the crack of rifles came from the center console. One shot came close enough that sparks flew from the gunwale and pieces of metal flew into the boat.
“I don’t think they wanted us to take their toys after all,” said Jenny. “ Which way we heading?”
“Right back home,” said Georgie.
“Tia, get away from that spot. Charlie, change places with her and get us some cover fire.”
“You stay there,” said Dutch.
“You got this gash at your hairline that looks pretty bad.”
“Ah for God’s sake, I’m-”
“Not getting up,” Dutch interrupted. “You stay down!”
Tia got beside Jenny as Charlie got to the stern and opened fire.
“They thought they could get away with doing stupid stuff,” said Tia. “What, for this stuff?”
“Some folks just hate getting robbed,” said Jenny. “So you are okay in a fight, then.”
“I just hate getting grabbed.”
“I’ll try not to grab you when we put you ashore lat-”
The air filled with Charlie’s cry as he fell backwards into the boat.
Dutch, Tia and Jenny gave gathered around him. Blood gushed from his left arm in a small spurt.
“Put pressure on the wound,” Dutch called. “Feel anything in there, Charlie?”
“Do you know what you’re doing?” Tia asked Dutch.
“Yeah, I’m trying to see how bad he’s shot.”
Jenny watched Tia run her fingers over the wound, take off her pullover and applied it to Charlie’s arm. “Felt like a nick. I hope you have an ECU you can go to that you don’t have to shoot up.”
“What are you, a medic?” Dutch asked her.
“Knew someone, watched him do this a few times. He’s got to stay down, and we got to keep an eye on him so that he doesn’t go into shock.”
As Tia announced her findings, the motor died.
“Oh no f’n’ way,” Jenny griped…
All content Copyright © 2011 James Ryan