Chapter 24

Brian stared down the barrel of the gun pointed at his head. He glanced over the gunman's shoulder and saw Justin tied to a chair. Anger flared inside him, but then he saw Justin smile at him. Justin mouthed what appeared to be, "Play along!"

"Brian," Justin said aloud. "Do you remember Kralik from Greenhills?"

Brian was startled but managed to mumble, "No, can't say that I do?" This clown was from Greenhills? What the fuck was going on? What did Justin want him to do?

"I never had the pleasure," Kralik said looking Brian up and down. He could almost understand why his angel had agreed to marry this man. "You were there before I came and I left before we had the … pleasure."

Brian watched Justin's face. Somehow he understood that Kralik had a thing for his partner. Justin wanted him to play along, but what good would that do? This asshole better not lay his hands on Justin.

"Mr. Kralik was going to come and rescue me from Greenhills," Justin explained.

"Is that right?" Brian asked with a frown. This guy must be truly nuts if he intended to go back to Greenhills voluntarily … for any reason. Although, Brian had to admit that he would go back if he had to rescue Justin from there.

"I thought maybe we could show Mr. Kralik how much we appreciated his efforts on our behalf," Justin added.

What the hell was Justin doing? "Doesn't he work for your father?" Brian asked.

"But he doesn't like my father any more than I do," Justin stated. "Isn't that right?"

"He's a self-important asshole. I only contacted him when I was trying to find out more about you, angel. Then he called me to kidnap you. I thought I could earn a little money and still have you in the bargain," Kralik laughed.

Both Brian and Justin shivered. That laugh was enough to make their skin crawl. Kralik was truly insane, and yet, he had been the one to walk out of Greenhills while they had to escape. It truly was the most fucked up place on the planet.

"Let's not talk about him now," Justin said. "Brian and I could show you a really good time." Justin's voice had taken on a sultriness that surprised Brian.

"You could, could you, angel," Kralik asked with an evil leer.

"Most definitely," Justin assured him. "If you untie me I can do even more."

"As much as I'd like that, I think we need to tie this one up first," Kralik said. He shoved Brian towards an empty chair.

"But…" Justin stammered. "Brian and I could really make it something special if we worked together."

Kralik hesitated for a fraction of a second. Having the two beautiful men would be something extraordinary. Then he shook his head. "I may be crazy, angel, but I'm not stupid."

"What … what do you mean?" Justin asked.

"I'm going to tie the hubby up, and have my way with you, while he watches." Brian cringed. "And when we're through we'll see if he still wants to participate."

Brian knew it was now or never. His left leg shot out and he wheeled around catching Kralik in the groin with the side of his foot. Kralik went down dropping the gun and moaning in pain.

Brian rushed to Justin. "Get the gun," Justin told him. "Don't worry about me until you have Kralik under control."

Brian dove for the gun just as Kralik recovered enough to do the same. The two struggled rolling back and forth with the gun waving wildly between them. Suddenly it went off and then the door to the cabin burst open. Carl and a couple of uniformed policemen rushed in followed closely by Cynthia and Daphne. Brian and Kralik were still struggling.

"Freeze!" Carl shouted.

Brian stopped but that hesitation gave Kralik the upper hand. He yanked the gun away from Brian and aimed at Carl. Four shots rang out and Kralik was dead.

"Boss," Cynthia called rushing to Brian where he lay on the floor. "Are you all right?"

"Just my pride that's hurt," Brian said sitting up and then standing. "I let that lunatic get the gun away from me."

"He's dead," Carl said feeling Kralik's neck for a pulse.

"Serves the bastard right," Brian said.

"Somebody help," Daphne called. "Justin's bleeding. I think he's been shot."

"Justin!" Brian cried rushing to his husband's side. "Oh God, Justin."

Justin opened his eyes. "It's my shoulder," he said wincing in pain. "I couldn't move out of the way. Somebody untie me … please," Justin begged.

They all quickly untied Justin and Brian pressed his shirt to the shoulder area where blood still gushed.

"I feel funny," Justin said in a daze.

"You've lost quite a bit of blood," Brian said holding the shirt tight against the wound.

"The paramedics will be here in ten minutes," Carl said. "I just notified them."

"Thanks, Carl, but wouldn't it be faster if we drove Justin to the hospital?" Cynthia asked. "I can drive him."

"All right," Carl admitted. "I have to stay here and clean up this mess. You take Justin to the hospital. I'll be in touch as soon as I can."

Brian scooped up his husband and they made their way to Cynthia's car. Brian set Justin in the back seat and ran around to the other side to slide in behind his lover. He cradled Justin against him as Daphne closed the door and Cynthia started the engine.

"Get us there as fast as you can," Brian ordered.

Cynthia hit the gas and the tires spun in the dirt. In a cloud of dust they flew down the old laneway. Justin moaned as the ruts jarred the car. Finally Cynthia slowed slightly and then gunned the car onto a paved road. Once they were on the pavement Justin seemed to relax a little.

"Does it hurt a lot?" Brian asked.

"Yes," Justin gasped. His voice seemed so weak.

"Hurry, Cynthia, he's losing more blood all the time." The shirt that Brian held against the wound was covered with blood. He didn't know if it was doing any good at holding back the blood flow, but he didn't know what else to do. "Hang on, Justin. Please, just hang on a little longer." There was no answer.

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