(Free E-Book)
by Frank Duff

This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike License.

To view a copy of this license, visit or send a letter to:

Creative Commons
559 Nathan Abbott Way


The converted warehouse that their apartment was in looked no different than usual when Johnny reached the corner of Ossington and Dupont. Still, he was too cautious to use the front door. He climbed the fire escape. When he reached their level, he willed himself to be silent and invisible before lifting his head to peek in through the window. Their apartment was crawling with cops and men in black suits. In the far corner was the reason why the phone hadn't been answered: It had been pulled out of the wall and Johnny's computer was a twisted heap of still smoking metal. Through the open crack at the bottom of the window, Johnny could smell an odour of magnesium. There was a cop poking it with his baton and holding a handkerchief over his face. Johnny almost smiled at his look of displeasure. Lyle was nowhere to be seen. Just then, one of the suits looked up and met Johnny's eyes. Johnny froze in panic for a split second before leaping to his feet and running down the fire escape.

He leapt from the second story landing and hit the ground running. There was a window being smashed above and behind him and someone was yelling "Stop where you are!" and when Johnny didn't stop, there was the report of a gun. Like most people Johnny had never been shot at before. Fortunately, some animal part of him knew how to deal with being hunted. It was animal instinct that carried him around the corner of the building and over the fence that ran alongside the railway tracks. It was animal instinct also that pumped his legs until the veins ran with acid and then still kept pumping them. Johnny was back on campus before animal instinct would turn his body back over to his brain and allow him to be sure he hadn't been shot. Johnny just wanted to hide. Someone wanted him dead.

It was raining by the time Johnny was lifting aside the manhole cover in the parking lot of the Medical Science Building. He looked around desperately, still expecting to hear cop boot-falls overtaking him from behind. Then he was down in the steam tunnels and pulling the manhole closed behind him. His memory served him well and after three quick turns he was rotating the wheel on the door that led him into the Hart House basement. When he reached Tinka's room, he found the key thankfully secreted away in the same nook above the door as before. Knowing, by the simple fact that the door was locked from the outside, that no one was inside, Johnny didn't even grope for the light before collapsing onto Tinka's mattress and falling immediately into an exhausted and terrified sleep.


He was awakened by the sound of the door being pulled open. He blinked a few times at the total darkness until Tinka flipped on the light. It took a couple more seconds for Johnny's eyes to adjust but when they did, the look of shock on Tinka's face was evident. It was what he had expected.

"Tinka," he began sputtering immediately, "I know everything hasn't been cool between us lately but I think I'm in a lot of--"

Johnny didn't finish his sentence because Tinka had punched him in the face. Hard. Hard enough to knock him out cold.

Go Back to Chapter 11
Continue to Chapter 13

Buy the Book!

Back to Table of Contents