Nelson Rivera's Night Moves On

Nelson Rivera's night moves on as his face was deathly pale, and there were deep bruised smears under his eyes from several nights without sleep and the horrors of what was going to happen. His breathing was shallow and fast with fear. He was planning to rob the 24 hour convenient store on Grassy Hill Lane, but his nerves kept him close to the walk in coolers. The soda bottles were sweating, but not as much as he was. he was planning his next move through his fear, and his gun was helpless in the ferocity of his grip.

He saw a mother with a child under her arm walking down the snack isle, but she paid no attention to him even though the gun barrel was tapping the glass on the milk section side. It was a nervous twitch that he corrected immediately.

Nelson Rivera played the robbery scene over and over in his head trying to get his frame of mind in order. The mother and her child moved slowly down the isle and then made her selection and headed for the check out.

After the door closed behind her he was going to make his move, but was distracted at that moment by the sound of the clerk's cell phone. The thoughts on his mind were streaming and fluttering caused by the fear that stained his heart.

The conversation the clerk was having had ended and it was time. Everything around him seem to spin, but he had to do it. He needed the money and there was no other way, but the robbery.

He made his move, but he did not understand what had happened, why the gun remained silent, despite all the strength of both hands on pistol grip and trigger.

The clerk at the counter just stared at him like a deer in headlights. He imaged the clerk dead. He imagined the clerk in a pool of blood, shot dead on the floor. He imagined a bag full of money and the robbery completed without a hitch. But nothing happened.

Nelson Rivera dropped the gun and ran out of the store. He crossed a quiet main road and cut over to Park Avenue, then straight toward Bassick Avenue past City Hall near hidden drive ways. A small white compact car almost hit him when he turned toward Greer Street.

He walked quickly, uneasily, suddenly not so aware of his surroundings while breathing hard he stopped. He ended up behind a chain-link fence at the edge of a long parking lot. By the time he reached the front gate, matters took an ugly turn. There was a police cruiser directly in front of him.

Nelson Rivera decided to stand tall and take the punishment he deserved. He turned slowly around and raised both hands into the air. The last moment of being a free man crossed his mind. The mysteries of prison strangled his heart. His family would be disappointed, and life would change forever. He knew this and he was willing to pay for his criminal actions.

"Hey, you," shouted the policeman. "Get the hell out, that's private property, can't you read the damn sign?"

Nelson nodded and quickly ran home.

© 2014 Frank Atanacio

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Comments 31 comments

billybuc profile image

billybuc 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

Now that was a close call if there ever was one. :) You continue to grow in this genre. Well done, Frank, and Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours.


gmwilliams profile image

gmwilliams 2 years ago from the Greatest City In The World-New York City, New York

God, talking about a reprieve for Nelson. This was an intense story that kept me riveted to the end. You are indeed an excellent novelist. You should start considering doing this for a living. START PUBLISHING MAN!


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton Author

thanks so much Billybuc and gmwilliams for visiting the night moves on..bless you both


clivewilliams profile image

clivewilliams 2 years ago from Nibiru

i was the cop who told him to get the hell home, then i shot him in the butt for trespassing:) Nice piece.


tobusiness profile image

tobusiness 2 years ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

So the devil looks after his's own, but his day will come... hey Frank?

Another excellent piece of work, I enjoyed the read.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton Author

thanks clive..lol and thank you tobusiness for always stopping by


always exploring profile image

always exploring 2 years ago from Southern Illinois

I was as nervous as the poor guy was reading this. I didn't expect the ending. Exciting read Frank..


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton Author

thank you always


Smilealot 2 years ago

I loved the way you built the suspense and threw in a little surprise at the end...classic Atanacio :-))


Jackie Lynnley profile image

Jackie Lynnley 2 years ago from The Beautiful South

A spellbound read Frank; and you know what they say. All's well that ends well!


Genna East profile image

Genna East 2 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

I'm just pleased that his "night moves" weren't the right moves. Then again, there's always tomorrow. Hopefully, he will learn from his luck of the day. Excellent write, Frank. As always. :-)


Genna East profile image

Genna East 2 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

Happy Thanksgiving!


Faith Reaper profile image

Faith Reaper 2 years ago from southern USA

Dear Frank,

You have written so many great lines in this great piece of flash fiction here, it is hard to choose the best line. However, I love the line, "The soda bottles were sweating, but not as much as he was ..." LOL

You have your creative writing on for sure here, and now I need to get my giblet on for Thanksgiving hahaha ...

Oh, I love the "night moves" too. Cool ending there.

Okay, Turkey ... I mean, dearest Frank, seriously, I am truly thankful for your friendship here in HP Town, and hope and pray you have a blessed Thanksgiving, for we all have much to be thankful for in this life.

Blessings to you and yours ... don't forget the nutmeg for that pumpkin pie!

Up +++ and away


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton Author

thank you smilealot for reading my Night... Jackie good to see you my friend.. Genna always good to see you and my dear dear dear gobble-gooble faith Bless you.. and may your turkey...hmmm.. Have a good Thanksgiving my dear faith... and Happy thanksgiving to everyone else too bless you guys and gals..:)


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean

What a relief this time! "He imagined . . . He imagined . . . He imagined . . . But nothing happened." I thought he was dreaming, and I guess he thought so too. Great story.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton Author

thank you Msdora.. have a safe and happy thanksgiving with your family :)


tillsontitan profile image

tillsontitan 2 years ago from New York

Love, love, loved your ending. It's obvious we didn't see it coming. When Nelson heard the silence I thought he had been shot! If only this would happen more often in real life and that second chance would turn out for the good.

Voted up, useful, awesome, and interesting.


christinemariezzz 2 years ago

...the horrors of what was going to happen...Unexpected ending, Frank, especially after reading "dropped the gun."

Your writing ability continues to be an exemplary model for me, but I don't think I want to tell them with guns, blood, dead shots, Ya know (LOL).

~christinemarie


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton Author

thank you so much Til.. and Christina for stopping by bless you both :)


Ariel-Cal profile image

Ariel-Cal 2 years ago from Bridgeport, CT

That was a good twist sir!


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton Author

thank you and hope you feel better


FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 2 years ago from USA

Frank, this is phenomenal. The way you describe the emotions, the thoughts running through his head ... "His breathing was shallow and fast with fear" ... "The soda bottles were sweating, but not as much as he was." Voting up +++ and sharing.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton Author

thank you Flourish.. always a kind word bless you


Jodah profile image

Jodah 2 years ago from Queensland Australia

This was great Frank..one of your best I think, and a surprise ending..nice. Voted up.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton Author

thank you Jodah :)


lisavanvorst profile image

lisavanvorst 2 years ago from New Jersey

Another great crime story. However this one had a twist. No crime committed and a man given a second chance. Your stories are always captivating and each ends with a different pattern. Keep them coming Frank. This type of writing is what I enjoy.


Ryem profile image

Ryem 2 years ago from Maryland

Really great story, Frank! I definitely wasn't expecting that ending.


sweetpikez profile image

sweetpikez 2 years ago

Dear Frank,

The story was remarkable and amazing.In times of distress and hopeless scenario, many of us are like Nelson Rivera. We are in a grey cloud to decide. But, a good heart would always be a good heart. It would pump out our bad thoughts.

Moreover, your story entails the importance of critical thinking. Every action must be deliberated by the neurons we have before any action is made.

Voted up plus other descriptions.

Have a good day,

Sweetpikez


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton Author

thank you lisa for stoppng by.. and ryem good to see you thank you too swwetpikez bless you for reading my night :)


wingedcentaur profile image

wingedcentaur 7 months ago from That Great Primordial Smash UP of This and That Which Gave Rise To All Beings and All Things!

Nelson Rivera gets a second chance to fly right. Let's hope he takes it. You know Frank, this vaguely reminded me of that scene in Quentin Tarantino's "Pulp Fiction,' when the young guy unloads a huge gun right at Vincent and Jules, from a short distance away, and all six bullets miss by a mile.

Perhaps it was similar "divine intervention" that jammed Mr. Rivera's gun. I'd like to think so.

W.T.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 7 months ago from Shelton Author

LOL never thought of that..:) thanks winged

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