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An excerpt from

Give Us This Day

Give Us This Day.jpg

The shooter was behind a dumpster. There were four or five of the containers in one spot. She looked back and saw Nigel slumped over. She dragged his body over behind the drum by his legs. She took out her cell phone and put the camera in video mode. She rested it on the brim of the steel barrel and pointed it in the general direction of the dumpsters. She said, “Sorry Nigel” and with her foot pushed his lifeless body to the other side of the drum.

Four shots rang out, three hitting their mark making Nigel’s body dimple with each perforation.

She stopped the video and replayed it. The shots came from behind the second dumpster, the one with two hinged tops side by side. The flash came from the narrow space between the open lids and the top of the container. The shooter had a slot to shoot through from behind, which afforded him maximum protection from her return fire.

She had to think of something. Then a strategy came to mind; maybe the shooter would think that Nigel’s body was hers. In the dark he might not be able to tell the difference. Assuming he doesn’t have night vision, she thought. She listened to determine whether he was coming over to confirm the kill.

She waited but there was no sound, no movement. She looked at the video again. He was well protected. And then she saw a way.

With her shoulder screaming in pain, she lifted her clutch over the top of the barrel while she leaned over to the right side.


The shot rang out and the bullet went right through the bag. She aimed at the dumpster at a bit of an angle, right behind and to the left of the shooter. She fired three shots in rapid succession into the front of it and heard the ping of the ricochets and then a moan. She was up and running, emptying her gun as she did. One of the last shots got the shooter right in his neck as he made one last attempt, in agony, to shoot at her.

She kicked away the gun as she grabbed her shoulder. She looked down at the shooter. In the dim light she saw the flow of blood gushing from his neck lessen with death. With her foot she rolled him over on his side. There, puncturing the back of his shirt was a small bloody hole. Two… Three. She looked at the dumpster right behind and to the side of the shooter’s position. There was a shiny dent where her hollow-point jacketed 40-caliber bullet had hit and shattered into at least three fragments from the looks of it, puncturing his lung and possibly his kidney. “Thanks, Harely,” she said looking up to heaven and to her brother, who'd died in the first Gulf War. He taught her to play Eight Ball and how to play the angles by putting a little “English” on the ball.


With her back against the other dumpster she slid down onto the muddy dirt not caring about her dress. She shuddered and then lifted her head and closed her eyes. She thought of Hawaii, coaching the girls and making dinner for Mush out on the barbeque in the back of their Captain’s quarters by the palm trees. She had her hand on her shoulder; it was sticky wet with her blood. She looked over to where Nigel’s body was sprawled out; it made her mouth curl into a frown as she started to dry weep. Crying without tears. She got a hold of her emotions long enough to take out her phone and dial the FBI New York Field Office.

“This is former assistant director in charge of the New York office Burrell, on temporary assignment to FinCEN, just involved in a shooting at 10th and 37th… a construction site, two dead on the scene – down by gunshot and I, I need an ambulance. This is a national security level one priority. Silent approach, no local response, federal jurisdiction only. Authorization, Director level 07206, be advised I am in plain clothes. Alert JTTF for NYPD protocols…”

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