DISCLAIMER: Women's Murder Club and its characters are the property of James Patterson, 20th Century Fox Television and ABC. No infringement intended.
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SERIES: Cut Series

By Demeter


In her job, Jill had been confronted with various reasons as to why people pulled the trigger on a person. She knew all the justifications, 'if you were in this or that situation, you'd do it too'. She'd been naive, maybe, but she'd never thought she'd have to make that kind of split-second decision, life or death, herself.

The sound was deafening in the small cellar, and for a moment, time seemed to stand still. The scenery was frighteningly surreal, and Jill's mind went back to the moments leading up to this one.

Lindsay would not just disappear in the middle of a murder investigation, especially if it concerned Kiss Me Not. And the man sleeping in her bed, cooking for her, walking her dog was just too smooth, too good to be true. Jill's fears had all been confirmed when she saw him return to the house. It was still dark, but she had no trouble recognizing the unconscious woman he was carrying.

Jill called Tom, then, against his urgent advice, she went back inside. She found the spare gun Lindsay had always kept in the cabinet in the living room. From the moment she'd heard the scream, the rest of it was a blur.

She just knew she couldn't let him do what he was about to do. Pete Raynor had laughed in her face before he died, and took her innocence with him, because now Jill knew. If someone you loved was about to get hurt, you were able to kill.

The silence after the shot seemed like a heavy weight on all of them, all-encompassing except for the sounds of sirens in the distance. Jill took off her cardigan and laid it around Cindy's shoulders, over the tatters of her blouse. "I'm fine," Cindy whispered, however, she was shaking so hard she could barely get the words out.

Next, she went to Lindsay, removing the gag as careful as she could, flinching when Lindsay did. "That son of a—" Lindsay's sentence ended in a coughing fit.

"Shh," Jill said, though she was aware that all of Lindsay's attention was with Cindy. "Let me get you loose." She had hardly touched the rope, but her fingers were already crimson wet. "Oh God, Lindsay."

"Just get it done. Good shot."

"I guess. I wish I..."

"I know. I'm sorry you had to--" Lindsay pulled her bloodied wrists out of the loop of the rope, paling so rapidly that Jill feard she might faint. "I should have known. I'm sorry." She didn't wait for Jill's answer, but headed to Cindy's side in two stumbling steps.

Jill stayed at a distance, careful not to look at the dead man sprawled in the center of the room. As her vision began to blur, she was grateful for the hand on her shoulder, turning her around. She expected Tom to scold her about not staying outside as he'd told her, but he simply said, "We'll figure it out. Everything's going to be okay."

Jill dared a look back at Lindsay and Cindy who couldn't seem to let go of each other yet, and, with a shudder, to the gun she'd just fired. For once, general assurances were most welcome.

"Thank you," she said.

The End

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