Friday, January 25


Another meaningless day. I know what I ain't - slack. I've pored over the medical documents, tried to figure out The Scotsman's game, asked around for any dirt on the insurance company.

But nothing is its own road, and I find myself leaving the office for a Hawaiian bar out of town. A peice of paper promised me answers here.

I find the bar closed and quiet - unusual for a Friday night. I make my way into the gloom, alone. Children are scared of the dark beacuse they don't know what's there. I'm scared of the dark because I know exactly what is there. I unholster Providence, flick off the safety, and trust in her light.

Around the scattered tables and chairs I find... nothing. The empty road leads me downstairs into an empty cellar. And here is a different kind of nothing. Bodies, lining the room on cold desks. Nothing pours out of them. Waves of emptiness and hollowness wash over me. They lie still, and it's always a surprise. No matter how hard you stare at them, they never stare back. They never flinch, or stir, or move, or draw breath. But every second you spend with a body, you grow more certain that that second will be the one that it goes for your throat.

And then the nothing explodes into sirens. Red and blue light flickers through the cracks in the floorboard, and megaphones cry out. Come out with your hands up, the voices implore me. We know you're in there, they whisper to me.

There is a saying among honest men. It goes something like this: innocent people don't run away. I never much believed in honesty. And nothing says "guilty" quite like an armed man standing in a cellar full of bodies, alone, in the middle of nowhere.

Only one thing remains: I run.

I tear up the stairs like the basement is on fire. I run to the bar, past the bottles of wine. I'm not proud, I stole a bottle for myself. I burst through to the kitchen, coldly silver and clean, and hear voices of alarm behind me. I kick open the back door, find an alley, and bless the cloudy sky for its darkness. The sounds of honest men follow my echoing footsteps as I run.

Questions race through my mind: why were the police there? How long were they waiting? Why are there bodies in the basement? What is the Company up to?

No-one is more suprised than myself when I run into the answers. I tear around a corner onto a dark street. A car stands parked by the road, lights dimmed, with two figures leaning against it, smoking and laughing. Across the road, I stare into the dark eyes of the Scotsman and the laughing eyes of Charlie.

A set up. It's always a set up. I run again, their lying eyes on my back, and run into the night until I can't run anymore.

Later, I sit alone under a streetlight, the cold wait of Faith resting in my hand. A stray cat purrs up against my leg, and all I want to do is kill it dead for liking me.

I wait for the new light of dawn, and put all the little peices together.

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