Right through the heart

by | Apr 10, 2012 | Fiction, Flash fiction | 6 comments

Right Through the Heart
By Laura McHale Holland

He had nothing against the man and woman rushing to the Mercedes, nor the paparazzi in pursuit, nor the throng of people flanking the spectacle at 3 p.m.—except that they were all in his way. He was angry, sure. Why should he have to pay hundreds of dollars to get his F-150 out of impound? There was no place to park except the white zone. What was he supposed to do? Skip the custody hearing so he couldn’t see his son anymore? No way. So he was gone at most half an hour. And the truck got towed. That frosted him, sure.

But he didn’t plan to use the assault rifle. It just felt good tucked inside his coat. Then one of those TV reporters knocked into him, pushed him aside and said, “Get out of the way, man!” So he pulled out the rifle, shot that reporter right in the head. People started screaming and he kept shooting and shooting, watching the blood spurt, the bodies fall. He got that man and woman, too, the ones rushing to that fancy car. Then he saw the girl in the back seat watching them fall. She had big brown eyes just like his son. He aimed the rifle at the police cars coverged on the scene, but he didn’t shoot. He let the officers  shoot him right through the heart.


All of the episodes in this series in the order in which they were posted follow:

Back pocket wishes

Cascading to the sea

Right through the heart

Away today?

A dime a dozen

She doesn’t know them

On the seat

A pillar of the community

He needs a friend

Double rainbow

The one he always wants to hear

Give it some time

It gives my life meaning


Extenuating circumstances

 The four of us

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  1. Jerry Kohut

    sounds like he was planing to go out in a a rage anyway. Perhaps he had his sights on his x or perhaps her Lawyer. It didn’t take much to set him off. he’s not angry any more. R.I.P.

  2. Robin Leigh Morgan

    We’ve got Chapter 3 of “Back Pocket Wishes”

    To start with I found one “issue” which is not clear to these eyes of mind or in my head.

    This guy runs into a “TV star” and then shoots a reporter. To me it would make more
    sense if he had ran into one of the paparazzis there, and then shoots the reporter. In
    a story like this it the paparazzi would have gotten in his way and not the TV star who all
    these paparazzi were trying to reach.

    Another question I have is why should this shooter think about having to pay hundreds of
    dollars to get his F-150 out of the impound, he had just park his car a few seconds ago, concerning the rush he was in to get to his custody hearing.

    So this guy loses his head and shoots the reporter in the head, and then in his anger continues shooting, eventually shooting the parents of the girl inside the Mercedes [limousine].
    Once he sees what he has done. Once he realizes the girl will no longer have either of her
    parents, the thought of losing his son is no longer important to him, as his son will still have his mother. The grief is too strong for him to bear, so he turns the assault rifle on himself, shooting himself through the heart, realizing he would probably spend the rest of his life in jail, and would be away from his son. With his realization that he would never see his son again, he felt that his whole world is gone and has nothing else worth living for. he felt his shooting himself through the heart would be the only way he could face himself his day and to go on living.

    This scene makes me to become a detective in this matter. I see a man lying in the street, an assault fifle in his hands and a bullet wound through his heart with “no one else around”. How did he shoot himself when you consider the length of the rifle he had?

    Glad to see you back, Laura.

  3. admin

    Hi Robin, I’m going to do some editing to make it clear that the TV star is a star reporter, not the start of a TV show. Also, the way I’ve written it, the guy is shot by a SWAP team. Also, he was in a custody hearing that lasted more than a few minutes, so I need to make that more apparent. Thanks for the comments, Robin!

  4. admin

    Hi Jerry, maybe he did have offing his ex and her lawyer in the back of his mind. I’m not sure I want this character to be aware of that, but I imagine someone carrying around an assault rifle would plan on using it. He could be in deep denial about that, though.

  5. Robin Leigh Morgan

    THANKS Laura for clarfying what you had orignally written.

    I don’t want to sound picky, but a new question has developed, which needs some clarification. What was the SWAT team doing there? It usually takes a SWAT several minutes to arrive after being notified of an incident which needs their attention. It is not as if there was the President, the governor, or a world leader present in the area.

  6. admin

    Hi again, Robin. I tweaked this scene a little bit more. I’ve got the officers shooting him in the heart now, not a SWAT team. I’m going to leave it alone for now. This one isn’t anywhere near as satisfying as Cascading to the Sea. It’s difficult to move a story along and have each episode stand alone as a work of art. This one is too one-dimensional, but perhaps when I’ve taken this project a little bit further and begin editing anew, I’ll figure out how to have each piece of the whole sparkle.


  1. The one he always wants to hear - [...] Right through the heart [...]
  2. A dime a dozen - [...] Right through the heart [...]
  3. The four of us - [...] Right through the heart [...]

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