This week, I’m continuing on with my Men of Falcon Pointe flash fics. In this 5th one, you get to see Nick’s reaction to the event.
Content Warning: While these fics take place after the event, they will discuss a school shooting.
Copyright 2017 Thianna Durston
Links to this flash fic are fine. Please do not repost elsewhere.
“Home, sweet home,” Nick said with a sigh as he and Ethan stepped inside. Having spent the last week in Switzerland, it felt strange to be home and yet welcoming as well. They dumped out their dirty laundry and while he started a load, Ethan went into his office to get their cell phones. They’d found that having them made it too tempting to listen to messages so when they went away, they left them behind.
Ethan’s exclamation made Nick dart out from their small utility room to see what was wrong. The look on his face was enough to make Nick’s blood run cold. “What is it?” he asked and stepped forward.
Slowly Ethan pulled his phone away from his ear. “There was a shooting up on campus last Friday. Nine men were killed.”
It took a few seconds for that to register. Nick grasped his arm. “Any of us?” Their close family of non-related men meant the world to him and three of those went to FPU with him.
“None of our close group. But all nine were part of the QSA. So you may know them.” Ethan put an arm around him and pulled him close. “Frank tackled the guy and knocked him out. The bastard was on an anti-gay crusade.”
A little dread filled Nick’s chest. He understood the anti-gay side as his family were firmly in that corner. But the desire to kill for any reason didn’t make much sense to him, let alone to kill someone just because of their sexuality. “Is he okay?” he asked, his voice husky.
Ethan pulled him tight. “As okay as can be. I’m going to take the next week off work and tomorrow I’ll check on him. Frank has suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder at times. I can’t imagine seeing some bastard shooting people made that any easier.”
“Shit.” Nick closed his eyes and pressed his face into Ethan’s shoulder. “We need to do something.”
“I’m sure we will. I have no doubt the campus has already made statements and there will be therapists by the dozen to help all the students get through the aftermath.”
“I meant us.” Slowly Nick pulled back, frowning slightly. “We can’t just sit here while assholes pick is off.”
“Nicky.” Ethan pulled him back. “Fighting fire with fire? I can understand the concept and would love to go down and rip the bastard a new one. But it won’t do any good.”
Knowing he was right, Nick still shook his head. “Well there should be something we can do. I don’t know what. But ugh…” He closed his eyes as the weight of it settled on his shoulders. “Where did it happen?”
“The messages say it was in the library. Top floor.”
Nick shuddered. “Shit. That’s where Frank works.” And where he and his friends studied every week.
“Come on.” Ethan hugged him tight and pressed a kiss to the top of his head. “It’s only five. I’m going to call Cory and see if it’s all right if we come by. I think talking to the others will help us both. It doesn’t seem… real.”
“No it doesn’t,” Nick agreed. “I’m kind of hoping we’re asleep on the plane and it hasn’t touched down yet.
“Call Deke and let him know we’re home and I’ll call Cory. Go on,” he encouraged when Nick didn’t let him go.
Nick went into their bedroom, his phone in hand. It felt surreal and he almost didn’t want to know for sure that it happened. But he straightened his shoulders and hit Deke’s speed dial.
“Nick?” Deke said loudly after the first ring.
“Hey, Deke. We’re home.”
“Thank fuck. Shit. I don’t know if you’ve heard—”
“We heard. Nobody in the group, though.” At least that was something. Though the more he thought about it, the more he began to shiver. Attacked. Some bastard came onto the Falcon Pointe University campus, their safety net, and murdered in cold blood.
“No,” Deke agreed. “But the school’s putting in new security measures. No classes tomorrow but everyone is asked to come to campus to meet with therapists and to get copies of the new regs.” There was a pause and he whispered, “I’m kind of freaked at going back. Santi suggested we all go together. Strength in numbers and all that.”
But the people who got killed probably thought the same.
“What time?” Nick asked, not ready to go into everything.
“We’re going to meet at the student union at ten.”
“I’ll see you then.”
As if he couldn’t help himself, Nick brought up the campus website on his phone and spotted the article. He clicked on it. At the top were the names of the men killed. He knew each and every one of them. They were all good guys. Four were seniors, three were juniors, and two were freshman. Nine men just getting started on their lives snuffed out for no reason that made sense.
The shaking in his arms spread to his entire body and intensified. It hit him in a rush, like a wave breaking over his head. “Oh my God,” he yelled and collapsed to the floor.
Ethan dropped down behind him and pulled him back against his chest. “I’ve got you, Nicky. I’ve got you.”
Nick sobbed quietly, his heart breaking for an event he hadn’t known happened, for men whose only sin apparently was that they were themselves. It wasn’t fair. It made no sense. And it hit so close to home that he shattered into a million pieces on the floor.
If you have enjoyed this tiny window into Falcon Pointe, check out the first books in the Men of Falcon Pointe series.
Flash Fic #6 will be posted on Wednesday, Nov 8th.
And now check out the rest of the bloghop…