The door to the back of the van was swinging in the cold wind when I came to. Shouts
and screams, and the unmistakable sound of firearms discharging chilled me in a way Asgard’s
endless winters never could. I took in my surroundings carefully before I did anything.
I was lying prone on the side of the van, the new roof where I’d been sitting was a dented mess,
and I thanked God I hadn’t had my spine crushed on impact.
Fenton’s chains dangled uselessly near me, blood and a bit of skin on the left cuff. From
where I was laying, I checked my pockets, and sure enough, my cuff keys were missing. After thevan rolled over, Fenton must have wriggled his mangled hand out of the restraints and snagged
The fact that people were still shooting outside meant one of two things: either someone
was trying to kill Fenton, or neither side had gotten hold of him yet.
Ignoring the pain in my head, I got up and headed out the van door. Seeing the scene
outside I was both grateful and annoyed that I’d left my service pistol at work. Being in an
enclosed space with Fenton without it had been a necessary precaution, especially in hindsight
seeing as I’d been unconscious. But, as I watched the muzzle flashes going off around me, I
missed its comforting weight in my hand, and had to stop myself from reaching for it out of
Keeping low to the ground, I relaxed my eyes, seeing past the snow like my grandfather
had taught me. It seemed men and women were running every which way in the blizzard, taking
shots at the officers who were less successful in returning fire. I only hoped someone had had
the brains to call in for backup.
I saw it while I was ducking out of the way of some punk, a small orange fleck keeping
low to the ground. Officers on either side were being kept occupied while Fenton shuffled his
way towards a blocky shadow that had to be one of Asgard’s many snowplows. While the
shooters were keeping each other busy, I ran down the street, ignoring the slicks of ice and
exchanging caution for speed as I gained on Fenton. The streets were clogged with parked cars,
the snow too severe to drive in, and Fenton was using them for cover as he made his way
towards freedom.Using my momentum and greater mass, I grabbed Fenton by the back of his jumpsuit
and, twirling him around, threw him bodily over a car. It wasn’t a clean throw: the tip of
Fenton’s foot caught on the roof and he shouted in pain before it was muffled by his fall. As I
walked around the car, Fenton hobbled to his feet, limping noticeably. I circled around him,
keeping myself between him and the plow.
“You forgetting something?” I asked, smiling at Fenton, whose face was red from his
tumble on the icy streets.
Fenton snapped his fingers and grinned, though his eyes were dead and calculating. “Oh
yeah. I was gonna snag that stupid ring.”
I waved my hand at him, “All you’re getting is a good look at it as I wipe that snarky grin
off your face. Don’t worry though, you’ll still be pretty enough for the pen.”
“I told you, Tyler: I ain’t going to jail!” He snarled, and with surprising speed, he flung
himself at me.
Maybe not that surprising, considering one of the cars behind him exploded in a dazzling
display of fire and shrapnel. The blast lifted us off the ground, and for the second time that
night, I flew.
This time I didn’t black out, but had the pleasure of crashing to the ground and having
two-hundred pounds of crazy land on me. Before I could move or even dodge the exploded car
parts landing around us, I felt hands wrap around my throat and squeeze. Looking up, I was
greeted with Fenton’s face, no longer grinning, but determined and calm as he slowly choked
the life out of me. The police train people on a lot of things…like getting a raving lunatic off your windpipe,
for example. Unfortunately, being twice concussed, and having black dots swimming in your
vision as your brain screams for oxygen, can complicate matters and make training seem very
far away. In the end it comes down to what really drives your will to live. For me, it was an
obsession…not with Fenton, but with getting the truth. How far was I willing to go to get it?
The look on Fenton’s face as I slipped the loop of my personal handcuffs through the hole
in his hand was priceless. He looked from his hand to my right wrist where I’d already clicked
the other end. He even stopped throttling me, his mouth moving, but no sound coming out. I
had to admit, I was rather pleased with myself: I’d out crazy-d the mad man.
“You aren’t going anywhere, you fucking nut job…” I whispered, my throat too sore to say
it any louder. It didn’t matter, because Fenton wasn’t paying attention. Instead, with his free
hand, he lunged to the side, and I had enough time to see something gleaming in his hand
before he thrust it into my guts. The agony of having hot metal invade my stomach was
indescribable. I was spared the job of describing it though, because after the third time he
stabbed into me, I passed out, and knew no more.