Just Doing My Job

Image of Set Stories Free - 2018
Image of Short Story

I was fifteen years old when it happened. I lived with my family, which included my mom, dad, my sister Lea, and my brother John, who was the same age as me. John and I did everything together, and if he got into trouble, so did I. At school, a bully named Alex Hutcher tried to take my lunch money one day. John and I both got in a lot of trouble that day because of the fight that took place. Alex was sent to the doctor, and then to the hospital. We had broken his arm and nose, knocked out a few teeth, and had possibly gave him a concussion. John and I were to be expelled from the school that afternoon.

The next day, John and I decided to apologize to Alex. As we rode on our bikes to the hospital, we noticed an old, rusted, pickup truck following us. We decided to take a shortcut to the hospital and go through the sugar cane fields, in case this pickup truck guy was dangerous. As we were coming out of the field, we thought we were in the clear, but we saw the truck again. It pulled into the parking lot and came close to the fields very quickly. John and I both had the same thought--run. I went left toward the hospital, but John had gone back into the field. John didn’t expect the truck to follow him into the field, but sometimes the unexpected becomes reality. I heard the truck hit something, and the next thing I knew, I saw John flip in the air and lay flat on the ground. I saw a man get out of the truck, take John, and throw him in the truck. I got a picture of the license plate and called the cops. I tried to stay out of sight. The kidnapper heard the sirens and took off into the field. I then called my parents and told them about what happened. They came to pick me up. My mom came to me sobbing. My dad came to me, and I felt the tears run from my eyes at the same as I saw tears run from his. We all sat there sobbing on the worst birthday I’ve ever had.

Two weeks passed by and no word from the police. My parents never slept, staying on the computer all night. And worst of all, there was nothing that could bring Lea out of her room. She stayed there all day, all night, and for what seemed forever. There was not a single sound that came from the room since the incident. The same continued for the next week, then the next month. Since I couldn’t do much about John, I decided to work on my resume after I got my driver’s license and a car, but nothing could fill the emptiness in my heart where John should’ve been.

The police found a suspect of who may have been the kidnapper. His name was Boriss Balbus. Mr. Balbus was a criminal from  Russia. He supposedly moved to the United States for safety from the Russian police and other criminals that he had caused trouble with. He has been caught stealing rare items, and taking people hostage, but never had kidnapped anyone. He somehow always managed to escape the police, FBI, and CIA. He was presumed dead when his car exploded in a wreck on a cliff in the Appalachian Mountains in North Carolina. Since I now had a target, I decided to take matters into my own hands. I left in the middle of the night. I drove to the police station and slept in my car.

The next morning, I applied get a job as a policeman. The man who interviewed me said to come back in the morning and I would start training. I went back to my house and my parents and sister and told them about my decision.

“This is crazy,” my father said.

“What if we lose you to,” my mother cried.

“I know it sounds insane, but I have to do this. I can’t just let my brother and best friend disappear,” I exclaimed. I argued with my parents for hours on end. The fighting increased until we heard sobbing from Lea’s room. We went in to check on her, and found her on the ground soaked in tears, her dirty clothes in a wet pile in the corner.

“Why are your clothes wet,” my mother asked. Lea’s only reply was her pointing to a tear running down your cheek. My father looked at me, then at Lea, then back at me.

“Son” he said, “I hope you pass your training and give you luck on the field.”

I went back to the station in the morning and began training. It took a long time to train for and learn and obtain the skills of a police officer--four years to be exact. In this time I followed the case where my brother was taken, which is now referred to as “the disappearance.” They found that the truck John was taken in near a forest. The police were to search for John and the kidnapper tomorrow night. I requested to be assigned to this mission. Luckily enough for me, a slot was open. I decided to go back home and talk to my family face to face. It was a hard talk. No one knew the outcome of what this would be, but everyone knew what it could be. The best case scenario would be that we would find John and send the kidnapper to prison, but the worst case scenario would be that no one was found and I was killed in action. Either way, I was going. All of my family had dinner together and got rest.

The next morning I said my goodbyes and left for the police station. I talked with the weapons specialist about the weapons I would be using for this mission. He let me borrow a spare gun and showed me to the firing range. He supervised me while I shot down the targets.

That night I met a few officers. Juan, our sniper, and Drew, who carried the big guns. Those guys were great and all, but Caroline, our medic, was amazing. Caroline was really nice and reassuring, and according to the other officers, she always had everyone’s back, but it eventually became time for the mission.

We drove to where the last sighting of the truck was. We found boot prints leading into a small pathway that went into the forest. Drew took the lead, then me, then Juan, and lastly Caroline. We found our way to an electric fence with a gateway and keypad on it. We decided to split up to cover more ground. Juan and Drew tried to hack the passcode to the gate, while Caroline and I found another way in. We found a large branch hanging over the fence. We all ended up climbing the tree and hopping from the branch over the fence. Within a few minutes, we saw a farm with a four wheeler outside. There was also a dog house on each side of the farm entrance. We slowly made our advance.

Suddenly, we heard the loud bang of a gun. I saw something fly by my face. Quickly we found the person who fired the shot. He was in the top left corner of the barn. John quickly fired back while the rest of us made our way into the barn. I took the lead on the push to the building, but little did I know that it was a trap. As I took a step into the barn, I heard a loud ‘BANG.’ I saw white and heard a loud and sharp ring. I’m not sure what happened before I woke up, but when I awoke I saw two massive dogs on top of Drew biting and scratching his face. He was able to get them off, but Caroline was in big danger. She was on the stairs in a fight with a guy who looked about twenty. He had a machete. I saw the short dagger forcefully jab her in her side before I could shoot the hostile. I gave her a first aid kit and Juan came into the room and cared for her. I went upstairs and saw the guy in the window pointing his gun at someone handcuffed to a chair and duct taped across his mouth in the corner. “John!” I exclaimed. A simple nod and confused look was his response. I opened fire on the enemy, but John was already leaking blood from his arm and hit in the head by a piece of old wood that fell from the roof of the barn. The other officers ran up and called for backup.

John was laying there in the hospital bed in a coma for a few months, but he was able to return home and see all of us again later. Caroline recovered within a few weeks.

“Thanks for saving me,” she said to me.

“Just doing my job,” I said. For the next few months we hung out a lot. I finally gained the courage to ask her, “I know this is a little awkward but, you wanna go out this weekend?” “Like a date?” she said. “Yeah,” I nervously answered. “You finally asked,” she said.