Chapter no 38

The Housemaid's Secret (The Housemaid, Book 2)

I remember exactly where the gun is.

I race over to the bookcase and pull out the dictionary. The gun is nestled in the same hollowed-out spot where it was two days ago when Wendy showed it to me. Just as I knew it would be. I pick up the gun with only slightly shaking hands.

As I stare at the revolver in my hand, I wonder if I am making a grave mistake. Even though there is something terrible going on in that room, I don’t know if it will make things better to bring a gun into the mix. When there’s a chance of somebody getting shot, things can quickly take a turn for the worse.

But I’m not going to shoot Douglas. That is off the table. My only intention is to scare him. After all, there’s nothing scarier than a gun. I am counting on the element of surprise to end things.

With the revolver nestled in my hand, I hurry back down the dark hallway to the guestroom. The fighting has stopped and everything is silent within the room. And somehow that is the scariest thing of all.

I consider knocking, but then I decide to try the knob. It turns easily in my hand. As I push the door open, a voice speaks to me in the back of my head:

Put down the gun, Millie. Handle this without it. You’re making a terrible mistake.

But it’s too late.

I push open the door to the guest bedroom. The sight before my eyes takes my breath away. It’s Douglas and Wendy. He’s got her pressed against

the wall, his hands wrapped around her throat, and Wendy’s face is starting to turn blue. She has her mouth open to scream, but no sound can come out.

Oh my God, he’s trying to kill her.

I don’t know if he’s going to choke her or break her neck with his bare hands, but I’ve got to do something right now—I can’t just stand here and allow this to happen. But I have learned from past mistakes. I may have a gun, but I have no intention of killing him. The threat should be enough. And then I will tell the police what I saw.

You can do this, Millie. Don’t hurt him. Just make him let her go.

“Douglas!” I bark at him. “Let her go!”

I expect him to back away from her, full of phony apologies and explanations. But somehow, his fingers don’t budge. Wendy manages another gurgling sound.

So I take the gun and point it at his chest.

“I mean it.” My voice trembles. “Let her go or I’ll shoot.”

But Douglas somehow isn’t hearing what I’m telling him. His eyes are wild, and he seems determined to end this—right here and now. Wendy has stopped clawing at him and her body has gone limp. The time for negotiating has passed. If I don’t do something in the next few seconds, he is going to kill her.

And I will have let it happen.

“I swear to God,” I croak, “I’m going to shoot if you don’t let her go!” But he doesn’t. He just keeps squeezing.

I don’t have a choice. There’s only one thing I can do in this situation. I pull the trigger.

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