While I was trying to free my mangled hand from the rat trap, across the restaurant I saw that one of the staff members had gotten a snow shovel from somewhere, and was winding it up like a baseball bat to knock the tentacle loose from my mom’s face and hopefully unconscious. I mean knock the tentacle unconscious, not knock my mom unconscious.
It was a dumb plan, I thought, so I spun and with my good hand I tripped the fire alarm switch on the wall, thinking it would distract him.
The overhead sprinkler system immediately blew on, spraying the entire restaurant with freezing-cold water. The waiters were jabbering at each other, my mom was going MMMMMFFFF!, the tentacle was snugging tighter and tighter around her throat, the customers were shrieking and running to and fro, slipping around on soggy sushi rice…
And I swear, for just an instant I could hear maniacal laughter.