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Reality Was Never Far Away...

Updated on April 21, 2016



Detective Laura Kimber drank a bottle of room temperature water in the coffee room of the Newtown North Carolina Sheriff's Department. She was there to extradite a prisoner who committed several murders in Bridgeport Connecticut. She listened to the voices and sounds of the peace keepers in that room until it wound down. The contrast was startling. Here, in Hicksville, the deputies were talking about fishing and hunting and they were very good friends, and they trusted one another. The pace was slow and only got frantic when she arrived to claim her prisoner. It was as if they never seen a murderer before. Some of the deputies even took selfies with the caged animal.

The sheriff was a good guy, he treated everyone who came into the building with respect, and all the faces had names. He knew them all. It was a different world from the hard streets back home.

When a crime was committed here the citizens got involved and made sure the sheriff had all the right information. In Bridgeport, they sit on the stoop, drinking beer from a brown bag as they watch a shooting unfold. The police come and they just go back into the house, get another beer and say they didn't see a damn thing. It was just incredible that they could witness a robbery in broad daylight. The man gets shot twice, robbed and the stoop sitters never witness a thing. Their motto was simple, They just don't want to get involved.

The sheriff had Kimber fill out all the proper paper work and just smiled at her. She knew he really wanted to know how Jean Shaw escaped and made it all the way down to his town. She wanted to tell him that Shaw began to assume the position, then suddenly pulled a handgun from his jacket, the uniform tried to grab Shaw with his right hand and as a result, he was unable to pull his own revolver from the holster on his right hip. With the Uniform grappling for Shaw's gun, the trigger was compressed. The first shot went wide, but the second caught the uniform in his foot knocking him to the asphalt. It was there when Shaw made his escape. The other uniform was going to give chase, but decided to help his partner instead. Shaw fled wielding his gun wildly through a back alley. He almost ran down an old black woman carrying two shopping bags from Price Rite. The old woman screamed and dropped the bags. She backed toward the bus stop and crumbled at the stop sign.

The sheriff of Newtown fed the prisoner and made him very comfortable. Detective Laura Kimber grimaced when she heard that. The man they took pictures with and fed him like a king was a low down piece of shit. He was a bad ass and a criminal lifer. In order for him to get a car to head south, he stopped an elderly Hispanic man and pulled him out of the car. He beat him senseless. That old man lost the use of his right eye. Shaw knew he could have just pulled the old man out of the car and made his getaway, but instead he hung around to beat a seventy two year old man down like a mangy dog.

“How did you catch him?” Kimber asked.

“Bill Byrant's hound dogs cornered him in the alley near Berta's Diner,” the sheriff replied. “We were going to let him go, but he tried to shoot one of Bill's dogs. That don't sit to well with Bill. He always carries his shot gun and he aimed it square at your prisoner's chest. Any sudden move and he would have put a hole in him in a minute.”

Kimber frowned.

“Anyways, we did a check on him and found out he was wanted for murder in your city,” he continued. “We put the call in and then here you are.”

Kimber nodded.

The sheriff had no arrogance. He was a simple man, and even though his town was uneventful, he worked hard and treated everyone fairly. The people that lived here were able to call him at home if they needed something. He would even meet them on Sunday to help them with whatever they needed. It was mind-blowing for Kimber, but was this a place for her?

“You run a tight ship,” said Kimber as she shook his hand.

“Thank you, detective.”

Their conversation turned into vague mutterings and she decided to end it and give that sheriff the glory of having a rare, but precious victory over crime.

Before Kimber drove off with her prisoner, she stared at the sheriff's office. She thought about a life like that. Then reality bit her. She couldn't last two days here. She needed conflicts, drama, courtrooms, alleyways, and low down pieces of shit like Jean Shaw.

© 2016 Frank Atanacio

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    • Frank Atanacio profile image
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      Frank Atanacio 13 months ago from Shelton

      John I want to thank you for leaving footprints on my flash fiction tales..

    • johnmariow profile image

      John Gentile 13 months ago from Connecticut

      Excellent story. Quite correct with the "don't want to get involved" part.

      I was a juror on one case wherein at the conclusion of the trial, the defendant posed a veiled threat at me and several other jurors. We went back and told the judge. A sheriff escorted us to our cars. But after that we were on our own.

      I have heard of cases wherein witnesses were threatened. It is sad but true. I'm not condoning the "don't want to get involved" attitude. I'm simply stating a fact.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 15 months ago from Shelton

      I do agree with you.. she would be bored LOL.. thanks for stopping by :)

    • Shyron E Shenko profile image

      Shyron E Shenko 15 months ago from Texas

      Frank, I very much enjoy reading about your Laura Kimber. She would be bored to tears in a peaceful little town.

      Blessings and Hugs dear friend

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 16 months ago from Shelton

      thank you manatita

    • manatita44 profile image

      manatita44 16 months ago from london

      Great stuff but 'cute' ending. Kimber's style of ending, perhaps. Nice one.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 17 months ago from Shelton

      thank you winged for visiting my reality :)

    • wingedcentaur profile image

      William Thomas 17 months ago from That Great Primordial Smash UP of This and That Which Gave Rise To All Beings and All Things!

      You know, Frank, I do believe I am, only now, starting to develop a true appreciation of your narrative technique---very efficient.

      Well done as always.

      W.T.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 17 months ago from Shelton

      LOL.. thanks again Genna for visiting Kimber :) Bless you

    • Genna East profile image

      Genna East 17 months ago from Massachusetts, USA

      "Some of the deputies even took selfies with the caged animal." It's hard to imagine that this takes place, but it does. "The sheriff had no arrogance. He was a simple man, and even though his town was uneventful, he worked hard and treated everyone fairly. The people that lived here were able to call him at home if they needed something. He would even meet them on Sunday to help them with whatever they needed. It was mind-blowing for Kimber, but was this a place for her?" Her life had taken her into a different direction, and one that she wasn't yet ready to leave. Perhaps some day, she will. I hope so. Great story, Frank.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 17 months ago from Shelton

      I agree dana tate and thanks for the visit ; 0

    • Dana Tate profile image

      Dana Tate 17 months ago from LOS ANGELES

      Ms. Kimber certainly needs more action that what that Country town has to offer.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 17 months ago from Shelton

      thank you Vellur for stopping by

    • Vellur profile image

      Nithya Venkat 17 months ago from Dubai

      Great story, Kimber needs an action packed life and definitely would not last in a small town.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 17 months ago from Shelton

      Thank you so much Peggy W and aviannovice for checking out my Kimber fiction bless you both :) Frank

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 17 months ago from Stillwater, OK

      Nice work and good research. Country life isn't for everyone, and these things really do happen in Small Town USA.

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 18 months ago from Houston, Texas

      Like someone above commented, at some point Kimber may desire a slower paced way of life. With regard to crime...I would always choose that. Living in the country and in small towns and a large city...the city life agrees with me right now and yet I love escaping into the countryside...local parks...even national parks when wishing to vacation or relax. Something to be said for both ways of life. Good tale. Sharing!

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 18 months ago from Shelton

      thank you mckbirdbks for visiting and Msdora thank you too Ill be over you pages to return the visit..:) bless you guys

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 18 months ago from The Caribbean

      Slow paced in Bridgeport? Don't want to get involved? Please take Kimber and her fans back to the action. Without her, there wouldn't even be a story in Bridgeport for you, Frank!

    • mckbirdbks profile image

      mckbirdbks 18 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas

      Kimberly has grown used to a steady diet of the lowest that our civilization has produced. Without it she struggles with her identity. You've presented a smooth story with lots of insight.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 18 months ago from Shelton

      thank you tsmog and Flourish for visiting my flash

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 18 months ago from USA

      I grew up in one of those towns where owner of the local gas station/auto repair shop was the part-time mayor. It's a slower pace alright.

    • tsmog profile image

      Tim Mitchell 18 months ago from Escondido, CA

      Left me wondering of the trip home. Reminds me of changes in my life today and I can empathize with Kimber's conflict and her resolve. A great work Frank!

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 18 months ago from Shelton

      thank you Nell Rose for reading :)

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 18 months ago from England

      Great story Frank, and yes it was too quiet for her, she needs the action, guns and bad guys! lol!

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 18 months ago from Shelton

      Thank you Faith for following Kimber to Newtown..:) Bless you

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 18 months ago from southern USA

      Hi Frank,

      I enjoyed reading about Kimber's trip to Hicksville and her realization that she not only needs Bridgeport but that Bridgeport needs her! You've done a great job here in contrasting the big city with the small town. I'm reminded of the big city in which I work and then traveling back home to the small town in the evenings, and what a difference. There is always trouble no matter where one goes, but the degree of trouble is much greater in larger cities, as you have expertly shown here.

      Blessings

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 18 months ago from Shelton

      LOL, well Missy, she'll find out then right? Thanks so much for reading

    • Missy Smith profile image

      Missy Smith 18 months ago from Florida

      Ah, well, she may need all those things right now, but one day she will want a lower key environment, and will probably be shocked that you can find some pretty low down sleaze bags in little country towns. I know; I live in one. lol.

      This is another great story Frank my friend!

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 18 months ago from Shelton

      thank you so much, Eric, Clive Billybuc and Always Exploring for visiting Newtown with Laura Kimber...:)

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Fuller 18 months ago from Southern Illinois

      Kimber wouldn't last a day in that town, it infuriates her that crime is rampant in her town, but she thrives on it. You see Frank, we know your character so well from your stories. Shaw will get what he deserves, she'll see to that..Great story. I loved it!

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 18 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Nice contrast between big city life and Hicksville....the reflections and observation are first-rate, Frank!

    • clivewilliams profile image

      Clive Williams 18 months ago from Nibiru

      She loves the excited life. That hot kimber.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 18 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Great way to contrast the two lives and places. Reminds me of choices I have made. I kind of miss the drama.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 18 months ago from Shelton

      thanks Jodah for stopping by and checking out my Kimber flash :)

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 18 months ago from Queensland Australia

      I enjoyed this story, Frank. Laura Kimber was a little out of her comfort zone here, but Newtown was in good hands with the Sheriff.