Title: Fish in the Barrel

Genre: Drama/Action/Adventure

Rating: M for language and violence.

Summary: All work and no play makes Sands a dull boy. Sands decides to go…fishing?

Disclaimers: I do not own Once Upon a Time in Mexico, directed by Robert Rodriguez in association with Columbia Pictures and Dimension Films, nor any of the characters affiliated with it.

Author's Notes: Sands likes to kill people. So, this is Sands, killing people and passing it off as "teaching them a lesson." Infinite thanks to Miss Becky for agreeing to beta.


Sands did not normally carry a cane. He didn't even have a seeing eye dog. He did not need either—he had a small boy who was being paid generously for his services. Chiclet and he had an understanding, and that was that Sands was blind, not helpless. Chiclet also understood that Sands did not want the general public to know that he was, in fact, blind, so any services rendered were kept fairly secret.

However, Sands did possess a cane, and he was using it right now—he wanted to be noticed.

Sands had returned to the States a few months ago—Mexico had become a little too dangerous for him. That, and he'd been paid a visit by none other than El Mariachi shortly before he'd left—apparently, his causing even more trouble had not been amusing to the bastard. El had broken into Sands's hotel room, quickly (and silently) disarmed him, and then had grabbed him by the balls—literally—and stuck a gun muzzle into his left eye socket.

"Get out of my country. If news of your antics has reached even my small town, then that means you are doing far too much—and if they become interested in you, they will go back to the Day of the Dead, which runs the risk of bringing me back out into the fore. Get out and stay out." That was all El has said before he'd smashed the butt of a gun against Sands's temple, rendering him unconscious. He'd woken later to Chiclet's panicked yammering and a headache worse than any hangover.

So he'd left—but with absolutely no intentions of staying gone. El had signed his own death warrant with that action—he'd definitely be going back to Mexico, back to Guitar Town. El's mistake of attempting to control the man who fucking ran Mexico would come back and bite him right on the ass. As such, for the past few months, he'd been flitting about the states near the border, calling up some old friends that still lived up here and that he knew would be very helpful when it came time to return to Mexico. However, as a result, he hadn't had any kind of fun since he'd crossed the border—in other words, he hadn't killed anyone in far too long, which brought him back to his current situation—a back alley in Dallas.

He made it a point to walk through an area of town he'd "scouted" earlier. Young hoodlums who caused trouble frequented here, and they often harassed those whom they judged weaker than themselves. Sands did not approve of such behavior—he'd never liked pseudo-bullies. Waste of perfectly good oxygen. As such, he'd armed himself with the white cane that Chiclet had bought for him (at least he said it was white), his wrap-around sunglasses instead of his Raybans, and a vacant expression. He made himself look as blind as he could possibly muster. And then, he went fishing.

It had not taken long to get a bite.

He heard them coming a mile away—four of them, fifteen at the youngest, twenty-one at the oldest, judging by the sound of their voices and the way they talked. They were smoking something other than cigarettes, but it was hardly strong—weak grass at best. They were also skinny young virgins, or at the very least had two-inch peckers, judging by how loudly they were discussing their various conquests. However, he'd heard the ripple of silence go through them, which meant that they saw him and were planning something—it would be perfectly useless. They'd try to take his cane, maybe his sunglasses, and at most they'd attempt to pick his pockets and shove him down in the street after spinning him around to disorient him. He was counting on it. He was hoping for it.

He decided to test them—as he walked closer to them, he moved carefully to the other side of the street, feeling stupid for using the cane like he was, but knowing it was making them even more excited at the thought of taking out a blind man. He nearly smiled when he heard them "stealthily" switch sides as well, making sure they stayed in front of him. Clearly, these boys were lobotomy patients, as they were apparently unaware that the other senses do, in fact, heighten when one goes kaput.

He tapped his way towards them, hearing every rustle their coats made, hearing every stifled snigger and shush, and, when he was about ten feet away, hearing their every breath.

Then he heard one of them move, and that was the signal that it was show time.

He stopped, and carefully turned his back to the wall—even though he could hear them coming, he didn't really like being circled from behind. He listened as they formed a half-circle in front of him, and he'd never thought of shooting ducks more.

"Hey, mister—nice night, isn't it?" one of them asked, a wiry little punk judging by his voice. His friends chuckled trollishly.

For a moment, Sands considered pretending to be fearful and helpless, but then decided to go the silent way. So he gave them a thin smile instead, fingers clasped around his cane. He heard them shift slightly, moving in closer to him. Judging by the footsteps of the one on his right, he was the one who would give him a little trouble—he was a pretty big one.

"What're you doing out so late, buddy? Dog run away?" Sands judged him to be the leader—his voice had the most command to it. He continued to smile, waiting patiently for them to get impatient and decide to stop the small talk and start pushing him.

"You deaf, too? We're talkin' to you." Same one—Sands decided to name him Peckerwood. Peckerwood took another step closer—none of the others did, confirming Sands's earlier judgment that he was indeed the leader of this ring of chimps.

He heard the familiar swish of a jacket—Peckerwood was reaching forward. He loosened his grip on the cane, letting the punk take it from him. His friends laughed at that, and Sands laughed with them—this was truly pathetic. They'd either start poking him with it or try and take his glasses next. If they tried the former, he'd let them play a little longer before dropping the pretense. If they tried the latter, there would be no more playing.

"Oh, the fucker thinks it's funny! This funny, too, huh?" A sharp jab to his shoulder—then another, lower, and the end of his cane hit his gun, stashed safely in his coat. If they recognized something was off, that could be bad.

"What ya got in your coat, Oedipus?" Peckerwood barked. Sands raised an eyebrow.

"Well-read, for an ape," he said in reply.

He heard the cane come swishing for his head. With lightning speed, he reached up and snatched it back from Peckerwood, and with equal rapidity, he spun it and jammed the end straight for his chuckling mouth. A howl of pain and rage mixed with a distinct cracking noise—Sands smirked in satisfaction. He knew he'd at least taken out some teeth. However, no time to relish it, as the group immediately began making riotous shouts of surprise that reminded him of a troop of baboons. With another quick jab, he rammed the end of his cane into the gang leader's miniscule balls.

You stay there, little boy, while I get rid of your backup, he thought buoyantly, slashing the cane through the air as he reached into his coat and pulled his gun. He took the time to "look" carefully at where he knew each face would be.

"Leave him. You run home to your mommies, children," he smiled coolly.

"We'll call the cops!" one of them shouted. Sands laughed.

"Yeah, and I'll inform them that you were harassing the disabled."

"You ain't blind!" the voice of the first speaker suddenly said. Sands took a moment to whack Peckerwood with his cane again to remind him not to get up before answering.

"Are you sure?" he said, and then slowly pushed his sunglasses down to the end of his nose.

One moment of silence.

Then he howled with laughter as the small-balled cowards fled, leaving Peckerwood where he lay. Pointing the gun downward and leering unpleasantly, he fired a shot a few inches away from the encroaching hand that was attempting to grab at his ankles.

"Don't do that. I see you there," Sands said, imagining the look he must be getting.

"Please…please don't hurt me, man," Peckerwood said pitifully, voice muffled from the original blow and cracking from the second. Sands smiled.

"Would you have complied to that request if I'd have asked? I don't think so." Sands knelt down, pulling his sunglasses off and tucking them inside his jacket. "How old are you?"

"T-twenty," he gasped.

"Tsk. Twenty years old, and all you are is a petty thug. Do you know how very much that irritates me?" he sighed, sticking a finger inside his left socket and itching just to make Peckerwood squirm (which he did).

"Who the fuck are you, some kind of fuckin' vigilante?!" the kid started yelling. "We didn't do nothin' wrong!"

"Oh, but you did. You attempted to prey upon someone you thought was weaker than you—and now it's caught up on you. Everybody has to learn that lesson the hard way, you know. Even I learned it. I thought I'd managed to avoid that terrible thing of underestimation—but, as you can see…" He smiled patiently, cocking his head to the side. "I'm not a vigilante, kiddo. I'm just a teacher." He lashed out quickly, his fingers curling around Peckerwood's throat and holding tightly. The barrel of Sands's gun pressed tightly to his forehead, stilling his initial thrashing.

"Oh, and for your information, I fucked my sister, not my mother."

And with a single gunshot, the philosophy lesson was over.