This story is very much alternate universe.' It takes place in a world where there is probably little or no law enforcement, as you'll quickly come to understand. It's kind of like a Wonderland... Maybe that would be a more appropriate title... But:
The title of this is not because I am talking about how wonder violence and killing are. I am, for the most part, a pacifist, of at least moderate determination. comes from a wonderful song by the band Remy Zero (who I really love), called Glorious # 1. I actually meant to write this story a very long time ago, I think, but it was only just the other day that I got the image that began this story. What I was trying to get with this story was the pace of the song in words, its strongly visual nature, its feel...
So this story was written in about half an hour, edited in another half an hour, in a fingers-flying-over-the-keyboard effort to capture what was going through my head. I hope it worked.
Please note: All sentence fragments are intentional. And, yes, I know this is pretty much plotless. Consider it a music video, maybe... I dunno quite how to describe it... Read and find out for yourself!!
The lyrics can be found at:
The engine was roaring loud in his ears. Sano was a dark shadow in the corner of his eye. The car was hot, melting hot. Summer nights never cooled down, the heat was killer.
Jesus fuck, Sano spat, and merged.
City lights a blur through the tinted windows. He wondered whether it wasn't hotter in the car for the nearly-black windows. They were going so fast, though, that all thought was pushed from his mind. He wondered if this was how Mach-3 felt. They, in their little black car, were going faster than sound, faster than thought.
Those city lights were already a memory, glittering, bright sequins in the dark. Soon, all that would be left of the city would be a halo of unnatural light, and darkness everywhere else.
Oh, Jesus fuck, Sano said again. The kid in the back was making noise again.
The traffic began to thin out, but that didn't mean anything yet. He couldn't breath on his own time until they were all finished. Thinning traffic was just a little lucky sign.
He turned back to look at the kid. Brown, wild hair, big, reddish eyes. He couldn't have been much older than fifteen. Kenshin knew no one would miss him. He was wriggling in the seat, trying like an action movie hero to get out of his bonds. It wouldn't work. He didn't have time. He had until Sano reached the desert, and that wasn't enough time.
Kenshin wondered if the kid knew this. Probably not, although the hot air in the car reeked with the promise of this kid's death. It was like all their sweat, and the steam on the tinted windows, and the scream of the pulsing engine.
He didn't know why they had the kid. Neither did Sano. It was a job, and a job was a job. It was all the same thing to him. You get a black envelope handed to you, and you do it. It doesn't matter, nothing else matters.
The kid was still making noise, muffled by the gag Sano'd tied around his mouth. Kenshin looked out the window, noticing that their little car was outstripping just about every other vehicle on the road. Soon they would be alone in the desert.
Fucking Christ, Sano growled. It sounded distinctly like the kid was shouting obscenities at them, and there was nothing that pissed Sano off more than a person who couldn't shut up. Sano liked Kenshin because he was quiet. Take the fucking wheel, he said to his partner.
Obediently, Kenshin took the wheel. Sano arched his back, and pulled his gun from his holster under his open, white Oxford. He cocked it, then, glancing at Kenshin to make sure he was still holding onto the wheel firmly. Kenshin's eyes were strictly on the road.
His foot still pedal-to-the-metal on the gas, Sano twisted around and shot the kid in the head. A roar of a released bullet, and an explosion of blood on the dark windows. The kid was silent, slumped forward in the seat, his big, red-brown eyes wide open.
Sano twisted back around, put the gun away, and took the wheel back. Kenshin relaxed back into his seat.
You weren't supposed to do that yet, Kenshin said softly, looking out the dark window. The road was almost completely empty of cars. The street lamps glowed like fireflies, alone in the darkness, separate.
He was fuckin' noisy, man, Sano said.
The smell of death was heavy and thick in the car, almost overpowering the stench of sweat and hot upholstery. Like the little droplets of blood that were rolling down the rear, side window, sweat rolled down Kenshin's face. His bangs were damp against his pale skin. He felt like he could still hear the kid breathing, even over the noise of the engine. He couldn't even hear the kid breathing before Sano shot him, he realized, but now it felt like the sound permeated the whole of the tiny interior of the car.
Let's give it another mile or two, he said. Sano nodded. They could get rid of the boy and go home to their air conditioning.
Sano was driving with his knees, his hands busy taking off his long-sleeved, button-down shirt. He turned around to throw it in the back.
Headlights. There were headlights right in front of them. They were in their correct lane, it was the other car that had drifted.
By the time Sano turned around, the cars seemed two inches away from each other. In the second it took Kenshin to brace himself, they'd hit. The impact was sharp, heavy, loud. It sounded like an explosion, like a bullet tearing out of a gun, the noise of the two hood smashing into each other.
Steam was rising. Steam, and more heat. The car felt twenty degrees hotter. They could hear someone else screaming - a woman.
Sano unbuckled his seat belt, threw open the door, and nearly fell out of the car. Kenshin got out, too, no more graceful. He didn't waste time wondering how they had survived. They had, and that was that.
The front windshield of the other car was shattered, the crown of a man's head embedded in the glass. It was an old car, and the glass was jagged, not round. The man's blood was seeping out of his head, running down the spider web channels in the broken glass.
A woman with long black hair and pale skin burst out of the back seat of the car. Her clothes were rumpled.
The driver, of course. There was a strange moment where all Kenshin could hear was the clack of the woman's high heels on the pavement. Then things sped up again.
Sano had vaulted over the smashed, steaming hoods of the two cars, and had torn open the driver's side door. He put two bullets in the driver's head. For a second, Kenshin felt sick. The man was already dead.
Fucking shoot her! Sano shouted at him.
The woman. Shoot the woman. This was a job, and a job was a job. He caught the gun Sano threw at him.
The woman's lipstick was almost black, and her dark mouth was open wide with her screaming. The thick ring of dark makeup around her eyes was running in trails down her cheeks.
She was still screaming his name, her voice starting to get hoarse.
She didn't even notice the bullets, Kenshin didn't think. She was too busy with her terrified grieving. He was glad for this, and threw the smoking gun back at Sano. It left a trail of pale smoke in the arc it had travelled, like the wake of a jet plane.
Smoking. Everything was smoking. The hoods of the cars, the gun, the desert around them. Yes, the wind back picked up out of nowhere, crazy, blowing hot sand across the flatlands to the left and right of the highway.
Soon it would rain, and the heat would be washed away.
The woman's blood was pooling on the hot pavement. The wind was the only sound, tearing past his ears like ghosts.
It was only then that he realized that Sano was still moving. He looked around, and he was by the edge of the road. The kid, the red-eyed kid, was in his arms. Kenshin watched his partner drop the kid in the desert, and then come back to the car.
Let's go, Sano said.
Kenshin nodded, quiet again. They got back in the hot car. Sano turned on the engine, which was still working, somehow, and threw the car into reverse. They peeled backwards, hot rubber on hot pavement squealing and, as Sano threw the car into drive and sped away, leaving the stench of burnt rubber in their wake.