A Loaded Gun in the Mailbox

In his mailbox there is a hand holding a gun. It’s severed, this hand, just on the elbow side of the wrist, and it has oozed a bit of blood out into the box. The whole thing has gone sort of pale, which makes the revolver in its grip look blacker and shinier.

It’s snub-nosed, this revolver, with a fat cylinder in which he can see the little metal heads of bullets nestled in their shells. The gun is pointing out at him, as if this hand wanted his money.

He looks around him, up and down the street. He closes the mailbox door. He opens it again. There is a hand in there, holding a gun. He reaches towards it, squinting, wincing in preparation of the bang, then chickens out. He stands to one side of the mailbox and leans in front of it. He waves his hand past the barrel of the gun. Reaches into the box again, gives up again.

He goes inside, past his wife, who’s doing dishes, and gets the phone. He dials 911. She asks what’s wrong.

“There’s a hand holding a gun in our mailbox,” he says.

“Finally,” she says.

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