My steel – cool as the falling rain – is jammed right in his face.

He pisses himself, an ammonia rain between his legs.

“You gonna pull me over, motherfuck?” I say. “The hell you think you are?”

His name is Chance. ‘Officer Chance,’ he told me two nights ago.

“Wha…I’m not…whoever you’re looking for.”

I sniff. “Yeah, same stench.”

“Oh, please, God. I didn’t…didn’t do anything.”

But his eyes can’t lie. He knows what he did.

My Sig is cold steel now, but how many hot nights has it seen? “Twenty-four.” And I remember every moment of every night. Every whimper and moan, every beg, every finish.

“Twenty…what?” His eyes never leave my gun.

In the beginning, those twenty-four nights, spread over weeks and months, had been exotic. They’d filled my brain with electric steam and kept me hard for hours afterward. Twenty-four nights later, I am soft. I can’t even see the twenty-fifth night on my horizon.

I tap my skull with the Sig. “Every detail from that night.”

He is confused and has no idea who I am. But then again, no one does. I never get stopped; never run a red light, never touch a yellow. Always use a turn signal, never speed. Never stop anywhere until I get home.

Sweat those details and you’ll never sweat a cop.

Until this fucker came along.

“You said speeding. We both know that’s shit. So why’d you stop me, Officer Chance?”

He has no legitimate answer. He’d stopped me because his outsized, cop-ego wouldn’t allow him not to. He revels in the glory when passersby see him holding someone hostage while his blue light ignites the darkness. It is a desperate, phallic stand-in for a self-esteem he’s never found.

“You fucked with the wrong guy.” I breathe him in like a lover. Our lips are less than an inch apart, our souls hot in each other’s mouths.

“But – “

“You started this madness when you pulled me over. Two nights ago?”

There is no recognition in his eyes.

“But I didn’t…I’m not even a cop.

Adrenaline dumps heavy in my blood; hot and fresh. This is more exciting than the twenty-four nights. His fear is a new, altogether unexpected and delicious kind of fear. It is exquisitely different than just slipping through their doors and ending their nights.

Two nights ago, beneath the safety of his flashing lights, in what looked like an unmarked squad car, he hadn’t been scared. He’d had big, swinging, cops’ balls, with their stench of arrogance. Less than three blocks from her house, he’d been in command, telling me this and that while waving a finger in my face through the open window.

“Not a cop. Then how did you come to stop me?” I take the gun off him, give him room to breathe.

“So you practice.”

His eyes flash and I know he sees a way out. “It doesn’t hurt anybody. I stop people, tell them to slow down, let them go. Not a big deal.”

“If you’re not a cop, where’d you get this squad?”

“It’s old, man. They stripped it down and sold it at auction. Still looks like a crime cruiser, doesn’t it? Bought the lights on-line. Got a badge, too.”

“You carry that stuff around?”

“Fuck, yeah. Wanna see it?”

The twenty-four always almost always beg. Tell me I can have anything I want if I just leave. “Do you get offers?”

At first, he doesn’t understand. Then his head rocks up and down. “Fuck, yeah. Mostly blow jobs. Pop it right in the window. Those chicks go to town, man. They’re all sluts.”

I slap him hard. He yelps and blood trickles down his chin until the light rain washes it away. “You terrorize them and then denigrate them for taking the only way out they have?”

I want to shoot this simpleton. Running around, terrorizing women for blowjobs. Probably doesn’t understand the drive that pushes him. Gets all jonesed up by a having a badge and ignores the delicate dance of soul against soul.

The rain slicks me. “You have no idea who I am, do you?”


“You could have solved it, Mr. Cop-Wanna-Be.”

He frowns.

“Two nights ago. Three blocks from where you stopped me.”

Eventually, the bells ring in his empty head. A bit of moonlight peeks out from the clouds and shines his face. “That was you.”

Now our lips nearly touch, and I whisper: “You could have given me to the world.”

I kiss him. Lightly. Just a touch, lip to lip, as I had done with the twenty-four.

Then I yank him from the car and shoot him twice in the head. Through the silencer, the shots are as quiet as distant thunder. I toss him deep in the underbrush and drive away in his squad. The truck I’ve stolen to track him down is two blocks away, on the side of the road, hazards flashing as though it’s having a mechanical problem.

The adrenaline is going to last all night, maybe all week. This is different. Exciting in a way it hasn’t been for a while. The uniform, the badge and squad, the sheen of authority. Everything will have new life.

So this isn’t the twenty-fifth night.

This is the first night.

~ fin ~


“Blah blah blah pizza job and blah blah reporter job and blah blah blah.  The good stuff is that Down And Out Books just snagged from Trey his entire ouvre of Barefield, Texas crime novels.  The first, 2005’s 2,000 Miles To Open Road, has just been released (through all the normal outlets, but start at Down and Out’s website) while the sequel, Exit Blood,’ will hit your ereader in the second half of 2012.  Who knows how many there will be after that, but all will feature that stripped down, barebones, west Texas writing his fans have come to expect.  His other recent books are the non-fiction The Cancer Chronicles and the crime collectionRemembrance and Regrets.  His short fiction has been everywhere but this year has been mostly flash in venues such as Shotgun HoneyFlash Fiction Offensive, and Thrillers, Chillers ‘n’ Killers.  Find him at