Week 265 – Tillie took his gun

Pain.

Like an elephant riding in a tank sat on his chest.

Tank groaned as his body was jostled, the pain so excruciating that he could fight the black tide of unconsciousness that swept over him.

Crying.

Someone was weeping.

There was pressure on his chest and he had to assume that whoever was trying to stop him bleeding out was the same person who was crying.

Tillie.

Wet drops began to land on his cheeks.

Tears.

Her tears.

They hit him in the heart more effectively than the bullet had. He was filled with that old urge to comfort, to take care of her, to make things better. He’d helped care for his elderly grandmother when he was a kid, then taken care of his mother as she battled cancer, then his disabled sister until her body finally gave out. And he’d taken care of his ex until she’d ripped out his heart by cheating and getting pregnant with her lover’s baby.

Taking care of people was what he’d done all his life, but it hurt too much to lose those he cared about so he’d shut down. Life was much easier when you didn’t feel, but Tillie was making him feel again, and part of him resented her for it.

The other part was almost … grateful.

Life might be easier when you didn’t care about anyone but it was also lonely.

His body was jostled again, and once again pain took him under.

The next time he surfaced there was the sound of gunshots. He was really starting to hate that sound.

Automatically he reached for his weapon but it was gone, he prayed that Tillie took his gun, and not O’Riley’s men. At least then she’d stand a chance.

Another gun fired, this one so close the sound blasted through his head.

Tillie.

Fear for her shoved away the pain long enough he could push himself up, where he saw Tillie, gun in hand, standing over a body.

“Tillie,” he rasped.

She turned, her wide blue eyes glassy with shock, her entire body trembling. “H-he was g-going to k-kill y-you,” she stammered.

She’d just saved his life.

Bright light suddenly flooded wherever they were, his pain filled mind hadn’t figured that out yet, and his strength faded. He fought it, not wanting to leave Tillie to fight for both their lives alone, but he was powerless to stop himself from passing out.

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