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The room was dark when a clang and a whispered curse disrupted my sleep. I sat up and peered at the figure standing less than two feet away from me, leaning forward to right something he'd knocked over.
At first, I thought it was the colonel returning from his card game, but as soon as my head started to clear, I realized it was a much younger man, and one who didn't reek of cigars. He held something in his hand that reflected moonlight from the windows. A knife, maybe, or a small handgun. I cursed myself for leaving my own weapon out of reach.
The man straightened and started forward slowly. I had to do something.
"Hold it!" I jumped up and pointed my hand as if it held a pistol. I doubted he could see me much better than I could see him. "Drop your weapon or I'll shoot."
The kidney punch caught me off-guard. I whirled around in time to catch a left hook that sent me to the floor. Tiny stars filled my darkened vision.
"What the hell are you doing?" the first man growled. "He could have shot me."
"He didn't have no gun," the second whispered.