Edward jumped from his chair moving swiftly from the library and out the front door. He stepped onto the porch, raising his voice, “Wait a minute, you two.”
John and Preston stopped and turned around.Eugenia watched from the library window as her husband approached them.Preston twisted his lips, “Great, now what?”
Their voices were loud enough that the kids could hear every word.
Edward was soon in front of them. He looked down at Preston showing the whites of his eyes, “What were you two doing here?”John spoke while Preston grinned, “I don’t think it’s any of your business, we were here to see Opal not you.” He held Edwards stare.
Edward grabbed Preston by the shoulder, and at the same time pulled back his fist. Preston shook free of his hold, stepped back a couple paces at the same time reaching inside his coat.
Cassie sucked in her breath, “Oh…no!” She stood screaming as the shot rang out echoing in Fisher’s ears.
Surprised, the men jerked their heads toward the bushes where the kids were now standing.
Edward lay crumbled on the ground, holding his side, moaning, writhing in pain.
“You shouldn’t mess with me Edward,” Preston shouted, running toward the car. They hopped in and sped down the driveway.
Fisher was running, screaming, “Dad, Dad.”
“No no!” Eugenia put her hand over her mouth frantically running from the room and down the steps screaming, “Edward, Edward.” Rushing down the walk she feel on her knees next to him, tears streaming like a river down her cheeks.
Cassie and Lulu ran to Mrs. Fentwood, putting their arms around her trying to comfort her.As blood gushed from his side, Eugenia placed her hand on the wound.
Edward opened and closed his eyes, rolling his head from side to side, trying to breathe while Fisher cradled him in his arms.
“Fisher I’ll get your sister.” In the house Clint raced toward the library yelling, “Opal! Opal,” he picked up the phone next to Edwards leather chair and dialed 911.
Opal rushed into the room, “What are you yelling about Clint?”
“Your dad, is out there laying on the sidewalk, your mom and Fisher are with him.”
Opal bolted for the door. Running toward her mom holding her dad’s hand.
A pool of blood was forming around Edwards back and side, it was starting to run down the side walk. Fisher held his dad, “Dad, you’re going to be okay.”
By this time Fishers jeans were becoming soaked with blood.
Edward moaned, “Eugenia I love you,” moving his head from side to side, opening and closing his eyes.
Eugenia, patted his hand, “I will always love you Edward,” looking down at him with her best smile.
Fisher pressed his hand on top of his mom’s trying to stop the bleeding. Tears ran down his cheeks and dropped onto his dad’s shirt sleeve. “I love you Dad.”
Clint raced passed Opal as he bounded down the steps yelling, “The ambulance and police are almost here.”
Opal suddenly slowed within a few feet of them. She couldn’t believe her eyes, Cassie and Lulu were huddled around her mother and brother who were on their knees trying to comfort her father. She glanced up to see the car at the end of the driveway turn right. Just as the ambulance and police sirens with lights blaring turned into the drive and sped toward the house.Opal elbowed her way between Cassie and Lulu, kneeling down, she put her arm around her mom, “What in the world happened?”
Fisher raised his head staring at her through blinding tears. His hate filled blue eyes gave her a chill, “Your friends shot Dad, that’s what happened.”
Opal sucked in a hard breath casting her eyes away from Fisher, “Mother, Dad will be okay.”
Eugenia holding Edwards hand glanced at Opal and back to Edward, “I know dear, I keep telling him that.”
For a brief second their attention was on the ambulance and police car pulling up to the sidewalk. The medics jumped out leaving the doors open, one ran to the scene while the other one opened the back doors and pulled the gurney out.
Cassie and Lulu moved back to let them work on Mr. Fentwood, they stared in silence. Clint walked over to Fisher who stood to let the medics work on his dad. “Your dad will be alright.”Fisher wiped the tears edging from his eyes with his jacket sleeve, “I hope so.” He reached down trying to brush the blood from his jeans.
The policemen rushed in, “What happened here?”
After Fisher related the story to them they put out an APB on Preston and John, then sealed off the scene.
The medic glanced up at Eugenia, “We’re going to rush him to the hospital.” They loaded him onto the stretcher and into the ambulance, sirens blaring as they pulled away.
Opal pulled up in her car, “Everyone get in, I’ll drive us to the emergency room,” she barked at the kids. She got out and ran around the car opening the front passenger door, “Here Mother let me help you.”
“Thank you dear.”
Setting in the back seat of Opal’s expensive car the teens were silent until Opal made eye contact with her brother in the rear view mirror, “Fisher, what were you guys doing outside? I thought you were downtown studying at Muzzey’s?”
“We were just coming home from town when we saw Dad and the two men talking out front so we stopped behind the bushes to listen.”
Cassie and Lulu made eye contact, with Clint who shrugged.
They pulled up behind the ambulance at the hospital and bailed out of the car following the stretcher wheeling Edward into a room, the nurse stopped them, and pulled the certain closed.
“You’ll have to stay out here in the waiting room. We will call you when we know anything.” The nurse gave them a sympathetic smile.
The waiting-room was empty, Fisher was glad for that.
Opal took a seat next to her mom. She reached over and took her mother’s hand rubbing it, trying to comfort her, “Dad will be alright, he’s been through worse than this before,” knowing in her heart that he wasn’t going to be.
Fisher, Lulu, Clint and Cassie sat on the bench staring at the curtain, waiting for someone to come out and tell them he would be as good as new in no time. But Fisher knew deep down in his soul that things just weren’t right.
They sat in silence. Waiting…….
Mrs.Fentwood encouraged Fisher, who was broken hearted at the loss of his father, to go off to Yale at the beginning of the Fall season. Clint went to Princeton and Cassie and Lulu went on to Harvard.
The End, or maybe just the beginning of a new mystery novel, coming soon.
Thank you for traveling with me.