A May Chase

Four hours left. I’ve been on-duty for eight and have just finished issuing radars to the road patrols so they can pretend to be doing something during their eight hour shift. I’m a Q-Niner, a TAI, a Traffic Accident Investigator. I’ve been to special schools, I work out of an office, I work without direct supervision, reporting to the Duty Officer, and I drive an unmarked Impala with dazzling lights, the envy of these road patrols. Fuck road patrols.

I look around the empty office and think about what I want to do with the next four hours. The air is a bathroom after a long hot shower and I decide to go drive around in an air conditioned car. It’s nearing five in the afternoon and people will start leaving post in mass soon. Maybe I can even write a few tickets.

I take off my beret and throw it on the patrol bag resting on the passenger seat and pull out of the parking lot to aimlessly wander the roads like a shark through the vast oceans.

“13, 600,” Newman, the dispatcher, squawks at me through the static filled radio. Her voice is like fingernails being dragged along a chalkboard.

“600, 13,” I answer.

“13, 600, two for the RV lot.”

I seethe and don’t answer back. I’m heading in the opposite way, I’m a predator in search of prey and I really don’t feel like sitting at the fucking RV lot. Without constant movement, a shark dies.

“Did you copy 13?”

“10-4,” I answer curtly and turn towards the RV lot.

After opening the gate to the lot where people living on post have to store their recreational vehicles, I walk back to my car and pull out a book to read while I wait for these two to load up their trailers and leave.

“13, 600.”


“Go ahead 600,” I say. “What the fuck do you want?” drips from my voice. I already know what she wants.

“One more for the RV lot.”

Again, I don’t answer her and she calls me back wanting acknowledgment but I ignore her and she eventually gives up.

I hate coming to this RV lot. It was first build for soldiers deploying to Iraq War I to secure their vehicles while they were gone. When they returned to Fort Knox, and several units were deactivated or moved to different post, someone came up with the idea of turning the empty lot with a chain link, barbed wire fence into a storage lot for boats and campers and trailers. When people wanted their RV, they would go to the Military Police station, sign out the key, and return it when they were done.

This arrangement worked out fine until some fucking colonel got his trailer stolen and wanted better access control, for the soldiers, of course. Someone thinking, Traffic doesn’t have much to do, decided to make it a Traffic responsibility to open, close, and monitor who was going in and out and make sure they were going to the right slot and taking their own trailer.

One truck drove out of the RV lot with a boat and the third vehicle entered. I sit in my car trying to read a book, but I’m frustrated and pissed and hate the army, hate the world and I can’t even see the words. I protest in my own silent ways. I never check the ID cards of who goes into the lot, I don’t make sure they’re going to their slot; I have no idea of what’s going on in there. And I don’t care either. If something is stolen, I’ll make one of the road patrols fill out the report. I don’t do reports on fucking larcenies or domestics or fights or murders. I do reports on accidents and drunk drivers and whatever else I happen to catch in a day and I want to go catch something today instead of sitting at this fucking RV lot.

The third vehicle leaves. It’s been fifteen minutes and the second vehicle hasn’t come out yet. What the fuck is he doing in there? I ask myself before driving in to look for him. I wish I had balls like Connor, a fellow TAI who makes much stronger protests. He once locked someone in there for taking too long. But I like to avoid SFC Stacey, the operations sergeant, whenever possible, so I meekly ask the man how much longer he is going to be. And how fucked up is this, a police officer asking someone how much more time he’s going to take? Leadership has made sure I’m nothing more than a bitch with a gun.

He finally leaves giving me a friendly wave as he drives out. I want to flip him off but haul myself heavily out of the car to go close the gate instead. Anger now unleashed, I peel out onto the road with a gun, bullets, pepper spray, and all the power and authority invested in me by the United States fucking Army and I’m not going back to the RV lot the rest of the night, I don’t care whose day I have to fuck up.

I drive out to Old Vine Grove, a quiet, curving, back road just outside the Bullion Gate that’s always good for picking up a speeder or two or even six. I have a spot out there. On a straight away between two small rises, I sit between these two rises hidden like a snake between two rocks poised to strike. I move into position, switch my radar to stationary mode, role down the window a little, turn up the music and wait.

It’s a short wait. Over the hill, I can hear an engine revving, it’s loud and throaty like a motorcycle and I wait in anticipation for it to fly into my web. First, a brown pick-up truck comes over doing fifty in a forty-five zone.

Now the motorcycle comes over moving at sixty-six. I lock the flashing speed onto the radar display, put my car in drive, and wait for a white Buick to drive past before swinging out onto the road.

The motorcycle is still in sight and is headed into some S-curves and I’m behind him with my blues flashing waiting for him to pull over like everyone else has. But I hear his engine revving up over and over and he gets closer to the brown pick-up, passes it in a no passing zone and pulls quickly away.

Adrenaline shoots into my blood like heroin.


Twist a knob. Sirens explode. Push the gas to the floor. I explode. Passing something. The motorcycle pulling away.


Three miles from the boundary line. Roads and terrain features melt away. I’m not gaining on him. He’s not pulling away. Speedometer topping one hundred miles-per-hour. Silent radio.

“600, 13. DID YOU COPY?!?”

“Did you have traffic 13?”



Cross into Meade County. Heading towards 313. No illusions about catching this guy. Motorcycles can outrun anything. If he makes it to 313, he’s gone. Radcliff coming. The opposite direction. Towards Fort Knox. Towards us. Maybe the sight of a police car in front of him will work. Make him stop.

Red brake light. A turn signal. What the fuck? Unpredictability from one moment to the next. I never know what these crazy ass- motherfuckers are going to do next. It’s scary.

He turns. Stops. Gets off the bike. I follow. Stop. Get out of my car. Pull my gun out. Still screaming siren. Groaning engine. I walk up to him.

He takes off his helmet and I push him onto my hood, search him, put the cuffs on him and throw him into the backseat of my car before turning off my sirens and calling into 600 my status and location. I can’t tell if she’s not listening again or if my radio just doesn’t reach. I assume it’s the former and listen to the approaching sirens. It’s incredibly reassuring hearing the cavalry approach.

I take Evil Knievel back to the station, finish his paperwork, and release him to his wife before sitting down in my office, exhausted from excitement, to finish my report and realizing I may be in trouble the next day. The speed of my chase, and the fact I left post, may rub the operations sergeant the wrong way. So I find the Duty Officer, a lackadaisical AWOL apprehension officer waiting for his retirement papers to go through, and tell him what happened. He smokes his cigarette slowly and wishes me good luck in the morning before walking back into his office to watch a movie.

Sure enough, the next morning I find myself sitting in Sergeant First Class Stacey’s office while he spends fifteen minutes trying to find the regulation I broke the night before. I take my ass chewing smiling inwardly to myself. I don’t care what this guy has to say anymore. It’s important to remind these motherfuckers sometimes that I’m more than just a bitch with a gun and cool car.

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