Thursday, May 21, 2015


The man in the long jacket strode through the steaming alleyway, swaggering with a stupid grin, like some myopic god in the kingdom of the blind.

Neon lights saturated the serpentine back lane in supra-living color. Even the shadows suffered in muddy pink. Bowing brick walls lurched wildly into the sweltering concrete canyon, swollen and ready to burst. Somewhere above yellow fluorescents swayed in a breeze that wouldn’t stoop so low. The warm, choking fog shifted from rose to orange to yellow and back.

Eventually, the swagger devolved into restless pacing before the man in the jacket found a likely spot.
He rested against an ancient, never-emptied garbage bin and chewed bitter pills. He saw her shifty stride through the pastel fog long before she noticed him.

She was trying to keep her head down but couldn’t keep from casting hinky looks all around. When her wandering eyes found his inside an orange shadow, she stopped short.

He saw the double cross.

She shoved her hand sharply into her purse, and he smoothly pulled the trigger. One sharp crack and that was that.

Sans hesitation or ceremony, the man in the jacket threw the dead woman’s hand out from her bag. Smiling wryly, he reached inside to fish out her piece.

Instead, he found an envelope with his payment in full, payment locked behind a dead woman’s passcode.

The man in the jacket stumbled woodenly into the thick, yellow fog.

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