Chapter 15: I Shot The Sheriff

Author: Steven Keaton
Date: 3rd September 1997

The cab ride to Patrick's apartment gave Erica time to run through her mind all of the strange events which had occured since finding the mangled goats head stapled to her front door. Here she was, lonely, without friends and using Rex (shudder) Carter (shudder) to relieve sexual tension (heave). It was all starting to get a bit too much for Erica and she could feel that around the corners of her perception, her world was starting to cave in. Would there be light at the end of this tunnel? She hoped so.

"Here we are, miss," the cabbie managed to say with a straight face as he copped a generous look at Erica's cleavage. Erica was a feminist in most things, but she did believe that it was OK to use her femininity to her advantage occasionally, as long as no-one got hurt. "That will be twelve dollars fifty". The cabbie managed to grunt while checking out the curvature of her legs. "But for you darls, make it an even ten." The cabbie gave Erica his most charming smile, which unfortunately was accompanied by a large unwieldy scar running down the side of his face. It also involved some very unprofessional Eastern European dental work.

"Thank you." Erica smiled and gave the poor cab driver a relatively high wattage smile. She got out of the cab and walked toward the entrance to Patrick's apartment building. She looked up and grimaced at the sudden remembrance of how butt-ugly Patrick's building really was. It was a bloated carcass of a building dating back from the mid thirties. Not a well renowned period in Australian architecture, that was for certain. Surprisingly, the building was quite popular, owing to the fact that 80% of its inhabitants were drug dealers. And also because it was located in the middle of Darlinghurst.

Erica suddenly suffered a pang of guilt. Until the kidnapping episode, Patrick was almost her friend, sort of…well maybe. Pulling her coat around herself tightly, she walked up the stairs to the fifth floor where Patrick's apartment was.

It was easy to tell which had been Patrick's apartment. Long lines of yellow police tape criss-crossed the doorway to her left.

Erica was prepared for this. Having not always been a totally law-abiding citizen, she removed her multi-purpose nail file from her handbag. She had to clear away some of the tape in order to find the lock. Once the lock was located, she slipped the no 3 nail file into the locking mechanism and jiggled it around, just like her ex-con boyfriend Bubba had taught her.

God they were some good times, she thought. Her rebellious teen-age years. Going out and having petrol drinking and cigar smoking competitions. Long nights down at the wreckers yard. The wild, drunken sex in Bubba's beat up old Ford.

Erica snapped out of her reverie when the lock suddenly popped. She carefully opened the door and ducked under the tape. She strolled into the lounge room. Erica heard a whooshing noise getting louder. It was someone's foot coming into vision.

As Erica hit the deck with a foot planted deep into her stomach, she grunted loudly. Lying face down, her assailant jumped onto her back to pin her down. She felt something poked roughly into the back of her head.

"Who are you and what are you doing here?" Erica's head reeled as she recognised the female voice as having a Finnish accent.

"I'm a -- was a -- friend of Patrick's."

"Get up slowly. Don't try and run. I have a loaded Glock 19 pointed directly at you head."

Erica stood up slowly. She was not sure of the ballistic capabilities of a Glock 19, though she was sure scared.

"Now turn around so I can see your face," the female Finnish voice commanded.

Erica turned slowly. She looked into clear blue eyes and almost passed out from the shock of recognition.

"Hello Mikka," Erica gushed.

Flikka's sister was as surprised to see as Erica as Erica was to see Mikka.