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I hated street patrol. A condition red alert meant every available officer was deployed throughout the city. This time of day families from all around crowded the market.

He stood out instantly. A white face usually did in this neighbourhood. The man’s shaved head, smart clothes and nervous disposition fit the profile. My glance surprised him and his sudden panicked movements revealed his intentions.

I’d trained to draw my pistol quickly, but I wouldn’t be quick enough. His hand reached into his jacket as mine touched my gun. I started to aim in the same moment the blast wave struck.

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