Shot­gun Xmas

It was the works Christ­mas was flow­ing, do and Page’s fave sam­buca shot was wait­ing but a dif­fer­ent kind of red... to paint the night blood

Real People - - REAL PEOPLE -

Our hor­ror at­tack at the works do

Apub crawl with a bunch of builders didn’t sound like a top night for a girl in all her glad rags, but

I was hav­ing a ball at my fella’s work Christ­mas do.

In among the tin­sel and cheesy tunes, I was snug­gling hap­pily with Luis Dob­son, 21.

‘What you hav­ing?’ he boomed over the din of Jin­gle Bell Rock.

‘Sam­buca and Coke,’ I boomed back. I was a year younger than Luis, and we’d known each other for ages, but our friend­ship had turned into some­thing more.

At Hal­loween, we’d screamed our way around the Scarefest at Al­ton Tow­ers, laugh­ing and lov­ing every minute. But it was see­ing Luis with Isla-may, nearly two, my daugh­ter from a pre­vi­ous re­la­tion­ship, that had prop­erly melted my heart.

He would make her gig­gle putting on silly voices, buy her shoes and tell me, ‘She’s gor­geous, just like her mum.’ Now, 22 De­cem­ber, Isla-may was with her dad while me and Luis en­joyed his do. Just a few drinks in the bars around Lin­coln with his work­mates, in­clud­ing my brother and my best friend Katie.

I’d glammed up in a white mesh top over a black bra, and big hoop ear­rings. Luis was smart in a green shirt and jeans.

Sip­ping my sam­buca, imag­in­ing Isla-may’s face as she saw all her presents un­der the tree in a cou­ple of days’ time, I felt loved-up, fuzzy and full of Christ­mas spirit.

At 2am, our mate Con­nor came to pick us up. Luis and I squeezed into the back of his green Ford Ka, so Katie, who was preg­nant, could sit in the front.

‘I’m starv­ing,’ she an­nounced. ‘I need a burger.’

Con­nor drove to our lo­cal Mcdon­ald’s drive-through, pulling up along­side the or­der­ing point.

‘What’s it to be, Katie?’ I chuck­led. ‘Beef and cheese feast in a snowflake bun? Choco­late Or­ange Mcflurry?’

‘Nah,’ Katie grinned. ‘You know I’m a Big Mac girl.’

Lean­ing across Con­nor, she or­dered her usual meal.

But then, as we drove to the next win­dow, I heard screech­ing com­ing from the car park.

It was pitch-black, but in a small pool of neon light shin­ing from Mcdon­ald’s, I could see a teenage girl, yelling her head off.

‘Too much Christ­mas spirit,’ was my first thought. Then the light shone on a young man and he was push­ing and shov­ing the girl around, four or five steps away from our car! Not think­ing, just re­act­ing, I flung open the car door.

I wasn’t the sort of per­son who could sit back and watch if some­one else was in trou­ble. So I jumped out. ‘Page!’ Con­nor cried. ‘Get back in!’ No way, Jose.

‘Are you OK?’ I shouted to the girl, who only looked about 16.

Be­fore she could an­swer, the young man got his face be­tween us, loom­ing in front of my eyes.

He didn’t say a word. That ugly, hate-filled face just thrust to­wards mine, a blur of a move­ment...

Fol­lowed by a crazy ex­plo­sion. He’d head­but­ted me square in the face! ‘Leave her alone!’ I heard the girl scream through my ring­ing ears.

Me and Luis are mad for each other My blood­soaked hands Luis suf­fered How did evening my end up like this?!

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