Finally, the pump clicked off. He withdrew the nozzle and twisted the cap back in place. Two loud pops filled the air. Corey looked around, trying to find the car that had back-fired on the street. He heard footsteps pounding the pavement behind him. A man barreled towards him, blood sprayed across the front of the man’s shirt. His eyes were wild, darting around, until they landed on Corey. Then they focused on him, and narrowed. The handgun came up, leveled out, perfectly still. The barrel looked unreasonably large to Corey as his eyes locked onto it. And then came the bright, quick blast before the searing pain hit his chest. 

Corey clutched his heart and he crumpled to the ground. Cold embraced him internally as all the warmth flowed out of his body through the hole in his heart, dripping through his fingers and pooling on the ground. 

There was no sound. No movement. He gazed at the clear night sky, calling for his love. His Gabriella. 

But she would never hear him.


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