Friday, August 12, 2005

 

Chair Leg Over Miami, part 2.

As my senses cleared I found myself standing between two rows of white washed sheds of breeze block walls and tin roofs, a row of palm trees running behind them. Above a sky of sun-bleached blue streched from horizon to horizon while beneath the soles of my black-on-white spectators lay slabs of weathered concrete scattered with a light dusting of sand. The sounds and scents of a metropolis drifted in from nearby but it wasn't this that grabbed my attention.

Running towards me was a small girl; no more that ten but so malnourished I couldn't place her age precisely. Her filthy dress streamed and flapped behind her as she ran, a worn rag doll clutched to her chest. What had drawn my attention to her, other than her fearful wail, was the crimson figure flying at her heels. This gore hued woman pursued the child like a phantom, dripping claw like hands reaching out for her tangled hair.

Instinct took over; drawing my pistols before I had even formulated a course of action I sped towards the two figures. As I came within three meters of the girl I leapt upwards, arcing above her head by a similar amount and let rip with both weapons as I did so. Alternating rounds of thrice blessed hollow point lunar silver and solar gold tore through the spectral fiend which shrieked much like her would be victim. She faded like a bad dream in the cold light of day as my feet met ground once more and reholstered the guns. The girl had stopped a half dozen yards away and regrded me with awe.

"You killed her?" There was no statement about it; she wanted, no needed to know. I bent and picked up a scrap of fabric from the ground. Once it had been a deep azure now it was red and brown from innumarable bloodstains. I could feel the power radiating from it as I held it between my fingers. That had been no regular blood thirsty ghost; I recognised the aura of one of the Hire Powers. Who, or whatever, that had been they'd be back, eventually. So I asked the girl the obvious. I looked at her and she seemed to be torn between the opposed desires to run from me in fear and stay beside me for protection.
"B.. b.. B.." she stammered before regaing her composure. "If I say her name she will come for me again."
"Splendid; then I can hit her some more" I responded. "Give me her name and I can have greater power over her. I might even be able to destroy her." I crouched down so that were shared eye level and then looked into her eyes with a grin that I hoped would be reassuring. "Who is she?" I repeated.
"Bloody Mary" the girl responded. Tires screeched and an engine gunned. Only my reflexes saved her life again . We dived to one side, the girl held tightly in my arms the car sped past us, bullets raining off my suit like a brief hailstorm. I completed the twist as my back impacted against a shed, shattering breeze blocks like china tea cups. The girl sobbed in my arms as the car accelerated away. I released her and drew my shotgun, Chixulub, from the bottomless depths of my coat. It took one shot and the vehicle exploded in a fireball. A single burning wheel rolled from the blaze and a scorched Miami number plate landed beside me.

Again I crouched beside the girl and examined her. Blood ran down her arm from where a lone bullet had grazed her. I cursed and pulled out a small battlefield medipack. "We need to get that seen to properly," I told her as I treated her wound. She flinched.
"No hospitals!" she replied emphatically, "they'll send me back to the Home and then She'll get me."
"Home? What happened to your parents?"
"They're dead. I mean if they loved me and were still alive they'd come back for me wouldn't they?" I wasn't going to refute her logic.
"So no hospitals, homes or parents," I recapped, "so what am I going to do with you?"
"I have friends," she responded, "They'll take me".
"Where are they?" She told me so we went there...

To be continued.

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