The doorbell rang.
Paul rushed from the hallway, huffing irritably and tying his robe.
“Who the hell could that be?” he grumbled. “They’d better be bleeding out of their face.”
Paul peered through the blinds.
“Oh my god.”
“What?” I asked, preparing to run. “Who is it?”
“It’s those damn library kids.”
“I told you, you were smiling too much.” Paul sighed and let the blinds snap back into place. “This is why we don’t make friends with non-ultras.”
“They aren’t my friends. They’re—“
“Stalkers? Your fan club?”
I groaned and eased the recliner into a sitting position. “I’ll get rid of them.”
“Don’t you dare,” snapped Paul. “We are going to wait them out. Eventually they’ll leave. They’ll think they’ve got the wrong house, and they’ll leave.”
“Paul, the van’s out front. They’re going to recognize it. And they’ll know we’re home.”
“Stay where you are, Countersink.”
“It’s going to look more suspicious if we don’t answer the door when they know we’re here.”
“Well, it’s going to look even more suspicious when they see you with a bullet hole in your shoulder.”
“But if they came for me and all they see is my creepy uncle—“
“—They’ll just come back. It’s fine. I’ll put a sweatshirt on. They won’t notice.”
Paul was silent for a moment. They knocked on the door again.
“Fine!” he said, probably too loudly. He stalked down the hall and came back with a zip-up hoodie. “Fine. Just…shit…just stand still while I get this on you.”
Paul helped me to my feet, handed me my cane, and then went to work carefully getting my arms through the sleeves. He zipped it up and helped me to the door.
“I’ll be fine, Paul,” I assured him. “They’re harmless.”
“Yeah, well…” Paul unlocked the door. “I’ll be in the kitchen with my gun, just in case.”
A/N: Paul, keeping library kids off his lawn with guns and sass since 1956.