Chapter 49

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"Hey, hey, hey," comes my Dad's smooth voice. "Don't you dare point that anywhere near my daughter."

The gun now leaves my face and points at his instead. I take in a sharp intake of breath, feeling the tension ripping through the air like a knife.

"What?" says the man quietly but with a voice as cold as ice. "Is this better?"

My father looks terrified. I turn away, squeezing my eyes shut but then there's a faint tap on my elbow. I turn around and spot Josh. He gestures to the rucksack with his chin.

Gun. He mouths. Give it to me.

With my hands shaking, I slowly creep my hands forward to the zip of the bag. The man and my father are still talking, still trying to find a way out of this. I just hope there is a way.

The man is yelling, screaming things in my father's face. I tune in on their conversation.

"You wretched little Elsa's. You think you can travel all the way up here and make yourselves a nice comfy home! But no! You're not welcome here! None of you are welcome here! You should be dead! Dead! Dead!"

Quietly, I unzip the bag and plunge my hand in, digging through the extra fleeces, ignoring the stares of horror and worry from Angie and her brother. Maisie still sits there, not really acknowledging the rest of us. Then, my hand hits metal and I grip it before pulling it out quickly and handing it to Josh. He flashes me an easy smile and flips it in his hands.

My heart is pounding. Maybe there is a way out of this.

"I wouldn't point that at him, if I were you," says Josh loudly and clearly.

The man turns round and his eyes widen at the weapon in Josh's hands. My heart is in my throat, thumping, thumping, thumping.

There has to be a way.

"Joshua," my mother says slowly, voice full of shock, "where the hell did you get that from?"

Josh doesn't answer her. Instead, he looks at the man, still pointing the gun upwards from his seated position on the floor of the Jeep trailer.

"Okay," says the man. "Not only are you lot disgusting Elsa's, you're disgusting armed Elsa's."

It happens so quickly that I don't even know how it started. All I know is that Josh has the man knocked to the floor and is atop of him, writhing, trying to pin him down. My father moves forward, I think to stop him, but after a few seconds, he's also joining in the struggle, trying to keep the man's rifle at bay.

I crawl over to my mother, where she's holding my little sister. She reels me in and we wait until Josh is on the man, legs pinning his arms to the floor. His hands hold the gun, which is pressed to the man's head. My father clutches the rifle in his hands, which he flings away in disgust, not wanting anything to do with it at all.

"You give us a ride," Josh is saying loudly, "and I don't blow your brains out. Agreed?"

The man gives a helpless whimper and Josh releases him, forcing him up and over the trailer and round to the door of the truck. The rest of us sit there in silence, hearing the roars of 'DRIVE OR I'LL—" before the man finally gets the message and the truck rumbles to life.

Josh hops back in, face red with anger. He moves towards me but I scoot as far away from him as possible.

The whole while the truck bounces on the road, I stare at Josh, wondering which version of him I just saw. But then, I realise, I've really only seen two. Mysterious Josh and Nice Josh. Now I've got Angry Josh to add.

And I can tell you that I really, really don't like Angry Josh.


This was such a fun chapter to write lol. Hope you enjoyed reading. xx


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