Will it be three today?
I slowly stood up, back against the charcoal-textured bathroom stall. My eyes remained fixated on the stranger minding his own business at his urinal. This is the way most tragic ends come in nature, ain't it? The little harmless rabbit is just hopping along in the forest, searching for greens to eat. He ain't doing anything wrong; he's just minding his own business. But that don't stop a hungry wolf on the prowl. He looks at this rabbit and thinks, “Finally, a snack!” Next thing the rabbit knows, he's writhing in pain, choking on his own blood.
Well, this wolf just found himself a snack in this measly bathroom.
Not a particularly tasty snack, but a snack nonetheless.
Being sure to be extra stealthy, I crept up toward my little rabbit with my heels up as to avoid generating footsteps. I bit down on my lip so the sound of my breathing would be silenced. When you're hunting, you absolutely cannot be seen or heard unless you got some kind of elaborate plan. In this scenario, I had no plan. I had no prior motive to harming this kid; he was just in the wrong place at the wrong time.
As I inched closer to my victim, I shoved my hand into the inner pocket of my jacket. I dug until I felt the coldness of my concealed lady. I held on to her tight, letting her know how much I missed her. Then I gently whipped her out of the safety of my clothes. Before the world knew it, it was blessed with the ineffable beauty that was my revolver.
Uberti Cattleman, 1873 Model.
Gunmetal gray barrel.
We're six years strong, and she's never failed to turn me on immensely.
I call her Myra.
I finally reached my destination directly behind the kid. He didn't hear me, or at least he didn't act like he heard me. He just stood there, utilizing his urinal with utter serenity. He didn't suspect a thing.
Can you imagine that? Having such a wonderful, terrific life that you felt you could just waltz wherever you wanted and never once concern yourself with the big bad world outside? Life is just a never-ending party where everybody is always having fun. You get drunk, you laugh your ass off, dance the night away, and possibly fuck that gorgeous stranger on the other side of the room. It's all a simple gig, right?
But what this guy don't know is that, even at killer parties, things ain't all going peachy keen. While the music is blasting, a girl is getting date-raped by the “nice guy” she met at the grocery store. While friends grind against each other on the dance floor, somebody is OD'ing on Roxanne in the upstairs bathroom. While everybody is toasting to the good times, a boy is being beaten by half a dozen guys for having darker skin than they got.
Everybody is going to the party to have a good time, but what defines a “good time” to certain individuals? The girl's rapist, the crackhead's dealer, the half a dozen racists—they're all a special breed of human being. They're the ones who don't care about morals or law; the “free-spirits”. This unfortunate bozo was about to meet one of those special breeds. It was time he be taught a valuable lesson in never trusting his surroundings.
I put the gun to the back of his head.
Cue the four clicks of death.
“Doan turn around.”
The kid gasped loudly, tensing up rather quickly upon feeling Myra's barrel against his head. “W-W-What the—” I butted the barrel hard against the back of his skull, jolting him forward in pain. “Doan fuckin' speak unless I tell you to.” He nodded quickly.
“Hand over your money bag—doan look at me when you do it.” He swallowed hard. “M-My hands are kind of bu—” I hit him again with Myra's barrel, making him yelp pretty loudly. “Look buddy, the first time was just a warning. This time? Strike numero uno. Now zip the fuck up and give me your wallet!” He immediately wrapped up his business and dug into his front left pocket. The blonde eventually held up his wallet and I snatched it from him.
You can tell a lot about somebody's social class by what kind of wallet they carried around. Think about it for a moment. The world is run by moola; it's what determines our place in society. Give an imbecile seventy-million and he's high tops, living easy. Give a genius ten dollars and he's nothing but a street bum. Nobody cares who you are so long as you got the guap.
So, what better way to convey the message of who you are socially than to have a wallet that compliments your lifestyle? A rich sonuvabitch will carry around a lush velvet wallet, red like the blood of his employees. Rhinestones are arranged on the front and back to spell out his initials. He likes to see people sacrifice their time and patience for the sake of him earning an extra dollar. He don't got any problems; he just wants to go home and indulge in his fetish for fine fabrics while soaking in his jacuzzi full of green.
A poor sonuvabitch? He'll carry a Ziploc bag, filled with all the quarters he dug out from his couch and car seat. He didn't bother to count all of them before he left home, but surely he has enough to order a burger and fries for lunch. People look at this guy with scorn as he pulls out his bag and slowly begins counting his change. He don't care about status; if anything, he begs for people to look at how poor he is. Because, that way, nobody will judge him for leaving the burger joint to go shoplift a new pair of shoes for his daughter.
This cat I was mugging carried a full-grain leather billfold with an aniline finish. This was the kind of wallet you'd see your grandpa pull out of his pocket when purchasing prune juice and a week's worth of spaghetti noodles for his wife's cooking. Chances were that this kid was given this wallet on his thirteenth birthday as a symbol of his “becoming a man”. He looked at the wallet, thought it was dull to look at, but knew he didn't have the money to go buy a more “hip” one that would impress his grade school pals. So he kept it and never found a reason to get rid of it.
I knew I wasn't gonna get rich off this kid...but it wasn't truly about the money, now was it?
Still holding the kid at gunpoint, I opened up the wallet and looked inside. I whistled loudly at the sight before me. “Wow kid, you sure you can affawd to walk around in this gas station?” He shook his head viciously.
“I-I don't g-got much, but you can have it—I swear! Just, please, don't hurt me!” Cue yet another strike from Myra against his head. “Motherfucker, did I say you could tawlk to me? That's strike numero due now, kid. One more screw-up and you're fuckin' dead. Got me?!” Now he was sobbing something fierce. Guy sounded kinda like a little kid who got in trouble for stealing his classmate's blue crayon. “Shut up!” I shouted at him before closing his wallet.
My victim started shaking hard. He continued to snivel and cry, though I could see his desperate attempts to regain his composure. His attempts showed in his mix of groaning and sobbing. I knew exactly what he was thinking at this moment in time. You could call me a mind reader, but any mouth-breather with a pair of eyes could tell you what he was thinking with some level of accuracy. This kid? He was sitting on a pretty sharp fence at the moment. He didn't know if he was gonna leave this bathroom alive or he'd be found in a pool of his own blood by some Joe looking to drain his pipes before gassing up his '85 Honda Civic.
The kid had hope, though.
He had hope that I'd suddenly see the error of my ways and let him go with only a bump on the back of his head.
He had the hope that he'd get to go home again and eat his mom's tuna casserole for dinner.
And he had the hope that he'd get to go to school again and earn the Cougars another victory by making that final touchdown of the night.
I smiled, chuckling to myself. “You ain't got enough guap for me to even floss my teeth with,” I said, stuffing the wallet into my inner jacket pocket. His shoulders began to relax, but I quickly fixed that by poking Myra against his skull again. Couldn't have this bastard breathing easy, now could we? What kind of mugger would I be, then?
I took two steps closer to him, still pressing Myra against his head. I leaned my mouth up to his ear. “Tell me somethin', kid.” He gasped at the sensation my breath against his flesh gave him. However, he was a good boy and didn't speak.
I backed away from the kid. “When you woke up this mornin'...” I started as I began pacing back and forth, me nor Myra ever looking away from him, “...when you got out of bed...when you took your mornin' shower...” He swallowed hard, attempting to brace himself for whatever I was planning. “...when you ate your bowl of cereal for breakfast...when you promised your mom you'd be home before it got too dark outside...” I stopped back where I started, poking Myra against his skull again. “...did you ever think you'd end up right here? In this gas station? In this bathroom? Did you ever once wawrry that you'd have a gun pointed at your head by a stranger like me?”
He shook his head. “N-No man. No I didn't!” I studied his blonde hair for a moment before asking him another question. “Tell me another thing. What do you think is gonna happen to you right now?” He gasped again, breathing fast. “W-What do I think is gonna happen to me?!” he parroted shrilly.
Myra slapped him in the back of the head.
He cried like a bitch.
“I'm the one askin' the questions here, pal!” He sobbed for a good minute or so before shaking his head again. “I-I-I don't know!” I growled impatiently, not satisfied with his incredibly lazy answer. “Think, kid! Use that imagination of yours! What's the worst thing that you think could possibly happen to you right now?” He choked on his own breath for a second. “Y-Y-You'll shoot me?”
I looked at him for a second.
Then I smiled wide.
That quickly turned into laughter.
Boy-o-boy, the sounds that came out of this chump! How I wished there were a mirror above that urinal; just to see the look of pure, unbridled horror on his face. He, somehow, managed to stiffen up more than he already was. Kid was scared shitless. He had no idea what I was up to.
And to be honest, I didn't either.
“You poor, innocent sonuvabitch! That's the best you can come up with?!” You know, maybe it was a good thing that there wasn't a mirror right there; the kid would've probably fainted looking at my face at that moment. I'm fairly certain he didn't think this was all that funny. But me—my sides threatened to orbit into space. In fact, I nearly dropped Myra onto the floor from laughing so hard! Thankfully, I managed to catch her and reposition her before that could happen. As amusing as I found this situation to be, I knew I needed to calm down or else somebody would come in and see what the commotion was about.
I used my free hand to hit my chest a couple times in the desperate attempt to halt my laughter.
My breathing finally was beginning to catch up with me.
“Kid, there are alotta things worse than me shootin' you.” I got close to him again and whispered into his ear again. “I could bash your face against that urinal, break your fuckin' teeth—severely injurin' the roof of your mouth.” He gasped, but I wasn't quite done yet.
“I could drag you to that stall over there, jam your head in the crapper, and drown the livin' shit out of you.”
“I could pistol-whip your fuckin' head until your brains are nothin' but mush.”
“I could force you to your knees and make you suck my cock just before knockin' you down, takin' off your pants, and savagely tearin' into your asshole until it prolapses.”
That last one just about made him scream in perfectly reasonable terror. His silent craving to yell for help made me crack up again, though only for a minute this time. “That's right kid; there are things worse than death that could happen to you today!” Myra kissed the back of his head one more time.
I slid my finger on the trigger and pulled.
No bang; I only had five rounds loaded into my baby as opposed to six.
Helps avoid an accidental misfire.
Gun Safety 101, kids!
Though I'm fairly certain the poor bastard shit himself at that moment in time.
I patted his shoulder with Myra's barrel. “But doan you wawrry kid,” I said as I stuffed Myra back into my jacket, “I ain't gonna do any of those things to you.” The kid quickly took a deep breath of relief. “S-So you're gonna let me go?!” I smiled wider than I should've. “After you answer me this one last question.” He nodded very quickly.
“Just now, when you asked if I was gonna let you go...did I tell you to ask me a question?”
If he didn't shit himself over Russian Roulette, then he certainly shit himself here.
I stepped beside him, now looking into his scared baby-face.
In a flash, I used my body to knock the kid onto the floor. I stood over him and set my foot onto his throat. “H-H-HELLLLL—” Before he could properly scream, my foot was stomping hard into his neck.
Three stomps in, he was choking on the little breaths he could find.
Seven stomps in, he was spitting up red.
Eleven stomps in, he was drowning in his own blood.
Two more and he was done.
After giving him three more stomps for extra measure, I stepped away from the body. I stared at my handiwork, shaking from the adrenaline rush. “So it is three today,” I said aloud to nobody. Indeed it was.
One now makes three.
I knelt down and dipped my right middle and index fingers into the splotches of blood on the floor. Scooping a bit up, I raised my fingers to my mouth and licked them clean. Warm aluminum was the taste; bitter, yet somehow sweet. My eyes rolled to the back of my head as I moaned quietly.
Oh baby, I shouldn't of done that.
Any of that.
And to think, all of this was Paul Sadler's fault.
The taste and smell of this kid's blood drove my senses wild. My own blood was pumping in just about every area of my body. Such a beautiful rush this was. It was great to have control over somebody's life and their death.
Call me Lord Death.
King Genghis the Terrible.
The Great Khan.
You must think I'm pretty evil at this point, don't you? A real creep—freak of nature. Well...ten points for you; I am all of those things and more. You may be thinking, “Why, Genghis? Why do you insist on playin' God?”
Honey, I ain't “playin' God”.
Playing God is easy; just kill a man. Don't have to do much else other than that. But I'm doing so much more. To truly take a life, you must be willing to accept a new life and it's essence. That life you take away becomes a part of you. Once you can kill your first victim and absorb his life force, you taste divinity. Once you realize your true power on this planet, you become unstoppable. Once you use that power, you become God.
Though, in this instance, I wasn't able to enjoy my high as long as I wanted.
Well...because something very fucked up happened at that moment.
As I was in the middle of losing myself in my post-murder euphoria, something grabbed my arm. The contact jolted me out of my daze. Shit, had somebody walked in on me? Had Paul come back without me hearing? Did somebody call the cops? Was I being taken away?
None of that.
Something much, much worse.