I looked to the left as I reached the store entrance at the corridor. Two security guards were on the floor in agony. I hoped that it was from the impact of bullets on a bulletproof vest. Two of the men were walking towards them reloading the guns they were holding. One of the other men had a woman with a knife to her throat pushing her along in front of him. The fourth was filming with a cell phone.
I glanced to the right wondering where the other two were. Not seeing them I looked to the left again. The two and the downed guards were probably fifteen feet to my left with the gunmen just a few feet from them now.
The one holding the woman was a few feet behind them and the camera man almost in front of me. I was willing to bet he was wearing an exploding vest as bulky as his clothes looked.
Decisions, life and death decisions, I put one round into the head of the man holding the knife at the woman’s throat aiming to sever his motor functions. I figured I had 15 seconds at the most to kill the other two before bullets would be coming my way maybe another 5 seconds to deal with the camera man as close as he was.
When I directed my attention back to the gunman they were turning my way. They were not expecting opposition this soon. The one on the left started shooting before he finished his turn the rounds going into the concrete wall ten feet away. Bam, Bam I put two rounds in his head as he fell into hid buddy the rest of his bullets going into the ceiling hitting the water pipes sending water spraying everywhere.
His buddy had recovered and was turning towards me again bouncing bullets into the concrete wall beside me. I could feel the shrapnel and concrete pieces hitting me. Bam, Bam, I saw one round hit him between the eyes the other going into his mouth of there about.
I turned back to the camera man in time to see him drop the phone and try to get his hand in his pocket as he was staring startled at me. As he turned his coat opened all I saw was C4 and wiring. Another head shot ended his life as he crumpled into a pile.
I looked around for the other two to see them running out the main door into a hail of bullets and a massive explosion as the vests they were wearing exploded from the bullets. The explosions blew the doors apart
I put my Glock back into the holster and walked over to the lady that had been held at knife point. She was sitting on the floor against the wall in shock. “Are you ok?” I asked.
She looked at me and said, “You’re bleeding.”
“Yes, but we are alive to talk about it,” I replied.
I could feel blood on my left arm and dripping off my fingers on to the floor. Then I realized Jenny was beside me trying to wrap my arm in a pillow case she had grabbed from the store to stop the bleeding and crying.
“You just can’t go anywhere without trying to get yourself killed,” I heard in between sobs and tears. Ching Lee, Vicky, Lorrie and Marcy had joined us.
“I think they are all wearing suicide vests. Get the stuff you bought and let’s get out of here before something sets them off,” I said.
I helped the lady up and we made it to the door to be met by dozens of police.
The first officer we met said, “You’re bleeding,” duh, tell me something I don’t already know, I thought.
“That is a minor problem they are all wearing explosive vests – be careful,” I said as we continued out the door.
At the cars I asked Jenny to unwrap my arm – I wanted to see it. There were three definite punctures, shrapnel I was sure.
“Let’s go, we can stop at the med center by the fire house and they can check it out. There may be more martyrs around and I have had enough for one day.”
Jenny drove like a woman possessed in her state car, with one of the unmarked cars behind us carrying Lorrie, Vicky, Marcy and Ching Lee. It was the fastest trip I had ever made from Annapolis and not be in an airplane.
We walked in the emergency door to be met by a doctor and several nurses.
“What happened?” the doctor asked.
“Shrapnel or pieces of concrete,” I replied.
“How did this happen?” the doctor asked.
“Annapolis – over at the mall,” I replied.
“It is all over the news,” he replied as he looked at the nurse. Then she disappeared.
“Yeah, it’s bad over there,” I said.
As he cleaned my arm and touched near the puncture wounds I told him each time I felt something move in my arm. I knew from experience there was something in there that had to be removed.
An x-ray pinpointed the objects. Then he injected some pain killers at each site. He asked if I wanted to be knocked out. “No, just get on with it,”
When the surgical tools came out all the girls made a hasty exit except Jenny. An hour later the pieces were removed and in an evidence bottle in Jenny’s possession. The wounds were irrigated and after several dozen stitches, some bandages, another tetanus shot and a heavy dose of antibiotics, I was ready to go.
We walked out into the lobby and into mayhem. There were a state policeman, sheriff deputy and Ty from Homeland, who was a gym regular.
“As soon as Eric and Marty saw the security video we knew it was you. All of you have to go back over for statements and a walkthrough,” Ty said.
“We were planning on it, just giving you guy’s time to get a handle on the mess there and a little repair work on my arm,” I said.
Edit by Alfmeister