Mostrando las entradas con la etiqueta victim. Mostrar todas las entradas
Mostrando las entradas con la etiqueta victim. Mostrar todas las entradas

sábado, 25 de julio de 2015

Life in the alley

   The club looked larger and even more filled with people from the second floor. I had just being there for less than an hour and I already felt a little claustrophobic, even though the place could fit a large plane inside, without the party goers of course. Most of the people were dancing, or their version of dancing, while some others tried to talk over the music on the second floor. People went up there because it was the lounge section and it was supposed to exist in order to mingle with others and just have a great time only drinking but the sound was too loud, even though it shouldn’t be. Anyway, people did their best to talk but I was too tired of trying to understand anything so I decided to go to the bathroom.

 I gave up to that fast as the line for the bathroom was very long and some people ere saying guys were fucking or something there so I just decided to exit, pee in the back alley and then come back in. I had a seal on my hand to do so I crossed the sea of dancing people on the ground floor and reached the door fast, as I felt more and more the need to go and pee. I finally went through the door, after having to push some guy flirting with this big hairy man, called bear in the gay slang.

 The day had been a very hot one so the night was very refreshing, not excessively hot nor cold. Just a nice weather to go to where the dumpsters were and pee. I closed my eyes for a second; wanting to concentrate on not drinking any more liquids but then I heard something. It sounded like a moan or some kind of complaint. I finished peeing, put it all away and then stopped and made no noise. There it was again, someone sobbing or something. My first thought was thinking than some guys had decided to take a trip to the back alley and have some fun but if that was the case, I would have heard some other moaning or at least two people breathing and I could only hear one. I walked away from the main entrance of the club, to where many bags filled with people, others with other type of garbage, had been put into a large pile. Then, I saw who had made the noises and felt really guilty about thinking those were sex sounds.

 As I had my cellphone with me, I called an ambulance right there. As I waited, I got closer to the guy: he had been beaten up pretty bad and was lying on the dirty floor, sobbing, incapable of saying a single word. Apparently, he was in a state of shock and couldn’t do more than just complain and sob. I tried to pull him out of the pile of garbage but he complained louder so I decided not to do anything. Then, I saw the light of the ambulance behind me and I stood up fast towards them, in order to tell them where the victim was. In no time, they had him on a stretcher and in the ambulance. I was about to turn around when of the paramedics told me they needed someone to go with him to sign papers and son. It could be anyone. So I went with them.

When we got to the hospital, I had to call my friends to tell me where I was but no one answered the phone. Of course, they were still inside the club and no cellphone, unless in front of their faces, would be noticed. A doctor came out to talk to me and told me they had to get the wounded guy to surgery. Apparently, the beating had been worse than imaginable and one of his lungs had been punctured. He had many broken ribs and was now hallucinating, babbling something that no one could really understand. I had to sign some papers saying it had been me who found him and that I had to be responsible for him for the time being. It felt like the right thing to do and, to be honest, it had been too shocking not to be both concerned and pissed about it.

 I stayed in the hospital all night. A nurse called Anita was kind enough to give me a quarter in order to get a coffee from a machine. I talked to her while I drank it, telling her I had just found the guy in an alley and had no idea of who he was. She told me that he wasn’t the first gay guy to come in like that. At least five in the last few weeks and it was rumored to be a very violent gang who also assaulted immigrants and prostitutes. Every victim had survived except for the youngest one, who had died only a week before. I thought to myself that, those guys in the club, most would never live through that. Guess they were the lucky ones.

 When the clock hit six in the morning, I was about to fall asleep right in the waiting room. I had nothing on me except my cellphone and wallet but nevertheless I had always been careful not to fall asleep where someone could take my things away. And after I had seen that night, I doubled my efforts not to fall asleep, even in a hospital. Thankfully, the doctor came out again and told me the surgery had been a success. He had to stay in the hospital to get better but he had been one of the lucky ones: other had been more brutally attacked and had tougher recoveries. The doctor also told me they had tried to locate his family and they had ben successful but they lived far away and, apparently, wouldn’t travel for their son.

When I heard that, my heart shrunk. I felt so bad for the poor guy, all alone in a hospital with a family unwilling to move from home for their victimized son. But, yet again, it wasn’t such an uncommon thing. I decided to go home and rest. Then, in the afternoon, I would visit him again. When I got home, I realized I had no keys so I had no other option than to wake up my flat mate. He was a weird guy and didn’t even say a word when he opened. He just went straight back to bed. I did the same, getting naked fast and into the covers, falling asleep in a heartbeat. My last thought went with the guy in the hospital, broken body but still alive. Was he awake? Was he wondering why that had happened to him?

  When I visited later that afternoon, he seemed to be much better than the night before. And I felt very guilty about thinking this, but when I entered the room I almost choked, as I hadn’t realized how beautiful he was. He had short blondish hair and green eyes. He was tanned and very tall. Maybe that was why I couldn’t really move him from the garbage. He was very nice and thanked me for what I had done.  He recognized, very openly, that his family was not coming and that he was going to try to get better fast in order to go back to his own place soon. He worked in a hotel as a lifeguard, also teaching tourists how to surf. His name was Michael but he told me to tell him Mike, so I did.

 I visited Mike every single day for the following week, until he got better. We chatted for hours, even making nurses come to shut us up. He didn’t share the room but apparently we were too loud for a hospital. The saddest moment came when he confessed me that his main attacker had been a guy he had liked in the club and that he had tried to flirt with him. That’s why they went to the back alley and the other guy surprised him with two more guys and beat him up. Kicks, punches, insults… It all flew towards him and put him on the floor. The really sad part was that he told me that after the beating, the guy that he had flirted with had tried to rape him but that the other guys decided it was best to leave so they did.

 It is very awkward to see a beautiful person sad or crying. I know this sounds bad but that’s what I thought after he told me his story. You just never think about someone that looks like a model in such a situation. Yet there was Mike, a short way from male perfection, beaten up by life. Anyway, we also chatted about nicer things, like our jobs and lives in general. As it happens, we had some people in common and he even recalled having seen me before but I had never seen him, I told him I would remember. Mike went red with this statement and told me that if I continued that way he would believe anything else I said. So we joked around with that and just became friends.

 When he was released from the hospital, I drove him to his house and had him installed. One of his arms was in a sling and he couldn’t walk a lot or very fast but he was alive. That day we ordered chines food and I realized I couldn’t keep doing what I was doing. If it went on like that, I would fall in love with him or become obsessed or something and it would be uncomfortable for the both of us. So I decided to be a friend and nothing more. Sure enough, we did exactly that and in a couple of weeks he was dating some big muscular guy he had met at the beach.  I was happy for him, mainly because he looked really happy, and it was the first time I saw him like that.

 Me, I went on with my life too. No, I didn’t met anyone and no; I wasn’t in love with Mike. That would have been too easy. I just wondered, every time I looked at him, about some many things in life. My first thought was to ask myself why would anyone do that to another person? Is someone’s existence so unbearable you have to kick them and almost kill them? But then I also thought about me, about how alone I was and how easy it was for mike to just get back on his feet. It seemed unfair somehow that life and people favor some over others just because of their looks, for good and bad. My conclusion: it was all a tragedy.

miércoles, 11 de marzo de 2015

The Shadow

   Weapon of choice? Well, he never really needed one. Every single job he was asked to do, he did it with his hands. He had learned most martial arts techniques and many other ways to kill without the use of weaponry. It was dangerous when he encountered armed victims, but nothing that speed and wit couldn’t solve. People were always scared when he appeared, apparently out of nowhere. He was practically and urban legend, the silent assassin. His real name was Gideon.

 But that name had been long forgotten, as he was not that person anymore. Now, he only went by his nickname, Shadow. It suited him, as every person that hired him knew of his skills and ability to make anyone his victim. Not even the strongest or smartest had escaped. He collected bounty for his work and disappeared, never working for the same person more than once in a year. If he was to attract the attention of the authorities, he had to keep his outings to a minimal.

 The rest of the time, he just kept on training and lead a quite life away from all the turmoil of the city. Thanks to his grandparents, he owned a farm, which sold milk and other diary products to local stores. In the farm, he lived only with the animals and no one else. He had decided, long ago, that he didn’t want to endanger anyone else due to his secret life. Besides, he had never felt a connection with anyone so pulling the plug on romance and a relationship wasn’t all that difficult.

 One night, the Shadow was hired to kill a corrupt policeman hat had escaped justice for too long. The wife of a fellow policeman had hired him for the job, as her husband lay in a bed in the hospital, in a coma, due to the actions of his former partner. The Shadow located him fast, in a warehouse, where he was supposed to receive payment for his help from a criminal group. He wouldn’t be able to attack right there but he would follow the subject quietly and then kill him away from all the fuss.

 But that wasn’t possible. The moment the man arrived at the warehouse, he was ambushed by many criminals and finally killed by a shot on the head. The Shadow, seeing something was off, was about to leave silently but then he realized the place had been sealed and then a hoarse voice called at him. Knowing he had nowhere to go, the Shadow remained where he was and asked the voice who had hired them.

 Then, someone else appeared from behind two thugs. It was the woman that had hired him to kill the man that was now lying on the floor, his brain all over the place. The woman identified herself, and her husband, as the head of a criminal organization. She had hired the Shadow to capture him and not to kill anyone. He thought of his chances but knew he wouldn’t be able to defeat so many men, without at least one pulling out a gun and killing him. He asked then, what it was that she wanted.

 The woman, called Helena, told him that he had killed his son a year ago. He really didn’t need any more information than this because he knew who it had been. A young man who he had been hired to kill related to a rape. He proceeded to tell the woman about this but she refused to listen, telling him the man who had hired him was dead, as well as his lying daughter. The Shadow then asked her to kill him fast because he didn’t like to chat without reasons to do so. But the woman kept telling him that she wanted revenge, because her husband had been shot in pursuit of him, only a few weeks ago.

 Fed up with it, the Shadow decided to engage the men. He was too fast for most of them, although a couple of bullets burned his skin. He finally toppled down one of the men, took his gun and shot Helena straight to the head. With the same gun he downed another couple of guys and, as they regrouped, he broke a large window and escaped through there. He never knew how but he made it back to his home, sleeping in the barn instead of the house. If he had been followed, they look there first and he would notice.

 But no one came. He woke up to the licking of one of the cows and decided to cure himself in the bathroom. They were only scratches so it was rapidly done. He decided to lay low for a couple of weeks or more, in order not to attract attention and destroy both his lives. The radio news informed about the incident in the warehouse and attributed it to a dispute between criminal groups. They also informed of the detention of several policemen and others related to the criminal gang.

 The Shadow, who went by the name of Barney in this town, decided to turn of the radio and instead work on his animals. He spent all day grooming them, changing their spaces and giving them fresh new food. He even had time to fix one of the milking machines that had not been working correctly. He did that for the following months, never suiting up again in order to take on a mission. He had enough money now and didn’t need to kill anyone else to live decently until the day he died.

 Anyway, Barney had other dreams. He wanted his products to be sold all over the country and, honestly, he wanted a life of peace. The incident in the warehouse made him realize that he couldn’t afford putting his life at risk for reasons unknown anymore. It just wasn’t worth it. So he put it all behind and, for a good year, he was at peace with himself and the world. He hired new employees to help in his small factory and the business grew better and wider, buying more cows and buying new equipment. It was all going too good.

 One night, after closing the factory, Barney decided to go through the books and check his financial state. He did it every week because it distracted him. The people working for him were well paid and were all every honest and trustworthy but he just needed to be distracted by something. Too often, before going to bed, he recalled all of those times he had killed people. It was something awful to live with; even been convinced that most of them deserved their deaths. The others were just victims and he did know he was a murderer.

 Then, after he had finished doing the numbers and he recalled one more murder, he heard a knock downstairs, in the small store he had put up. Maybe it was the wind but the knock sound grew louder and it was obvious someone was there. He went downstairs but did not open, instead going through the back to surprise his nighttime guest. He grabbed a shovel to do so but was himself surprised when it was a young girl, who screamed like crazy when he almost slammed the shovel on her head.

 She started talking loud, like crazy, saying many words in a single second. Barney lowered the shovel and tried to calm her down, asking her why she was there. Asking her if there was some kind of problem. She shook her head negatively and said she had come to speak to him. Taking a look around, Barney invited her inside through the back door, to the kitchen. He poured some tea on two cups and told her to speak freely.

 The girl then told him her name was Florence. She had been looking for him for the last couple of years. As she put it, she was a clever girl and put it various clues together to get there, because she knew Barney was actually the Shadow. Barney spilled some of the tea on him as she said this. He automatically looked around, expecting people to come in from everywhere but that did not happened. Florence then confessed that her father had hired him two years ago, to kill her rapist.

 The Shadow was shocked but then he remembered the woman in the warehouse saying she had killed of that family. Florence explained that the men had tampered with the gas supply in her home, so to create an explosion. She was the only one in her family to notice the smell, coming down the house and then coming out to check the gas register. She was there when whole house exploded and she saw, before passing out, the men who had killed her family.

 The Shadow looked at her and understood instantly. He told her that he wasn’t accepting any requests or jobs in the meantime and that she should go and look for other family members to help her, if that was what she needed.

 But Florence was confused. She told Barney that she had no need for help as her family money was on an account that she emptied the day following the explosion. She had changed her name and, since the tragedy, she had been looking for him only to thank him and to ask a small favor, which had nothing to do with death or revenge.

 The Shadow didn’t even ask. He only stared at her and she started to cry in silence. Florence then said she had survived two attacks on her life, out of pure luck. And now, she wanted to learn how to defend herself. She wasn’t going to seek revenge but, if someone else did, she wanted to be prepared. And who better to prepare her that the legendary Shadow?

 He finished his tea and, without any word, he left for his room when he tried to sleep but couldn’t. In the morning, he realized Florence had not slept a minute, instead making breakfast. They didn’t say a word, not until she followed him to the backside of the barn, where he showed her a small space where he did a demonstration of his skills. There, the first relationship he had had in years finally began.

sábado, 7 de marzo de 2015


   I stepped in the boat and sat inside. It was not a big space and it all smell like fish but, given the circumstances, I didn’t thought I should say or do anything about those two things. Little things, might I add, compared to the situation at hand. Onboard came the man that had been pointing at me with his gun all along but then the other one, the one that seemed less likely to shoot at any given opportunity, told him to step out of there and let him do it. There was no one else that could help me and it was too dark too distinguish anything more than the water, the boat and the armed man that had stepped out and disappeared.

 The man I was with had turned the engine and we were traveling fast. The sea was calm and there seemed to be no fishing boats or ferries that could see us. It was almost as if it was meant to be that way and, of course for me, that wasn’t so good.

 After what seemed liked an hour of journey into the open sea, the man stopped the engine and looked straight at my eyes. It was unsettling, as he was one of those people with very bright eyes that make you feel uncomfortable when you look directly at them. I had always wondered if they knew they made people feel that uneasy.

-       Did you really do it?

 There it was. It had been obvious; from the moment they had kidnapped me in my home that he wanted to ask that question so bad. Right then, he seemed eager to know the truth behind all of this, probably the truth about why he was with me right in the middle of the ocean, where no one will ever hear us talk or say the most amazing of truths. I could almost tell he was sweating, the stains beneath his armpits growing, his upper lip trembling at my sight.

-       What is that I apparently did?

 The man snored a bit, smile and kind of laughing. He was nervous. It was so obvious: his hand trembled when he wiped off his sweat and his smile wasn’t the one of a man that feels safe or sure about anything anymore. Maybe, after all, the wrong man had stepped in the boat with me.

-       We were hired.
-       I assumed as much
-       You killed a family.
-       Yes.

 The man seemed to tremble once more, due to my “confession”. To be honest, I’ve never really hidden anything about what I’ve done. I’ve made my peace with it all, specially then, when I seemed so close to death. Why lie to him when he was obviously so eager to know the truth, so eager to think he knew or that he understood what his task was all about.

-       And you say it like that? So… So cool and casual? Are you crazy?
-     I’m not mentally unstable, although the fact that I’ve killed makes me very likely to have one of those fancy disorders every murderer seems to have these days.
-       How many more?

 I couldn’t contain a smirk when he asked this. Not only because I knew it would make him tremble again, but also because people were always like that, wanting the morbid little details of how I had done something or the other. It was so typical of every single person in the world to apparently feel disgusted and scared but deep down, been utterly interested in what I had to say about all the corpses I’ve created. They sometimes seem even more interested that I was when I did what I did.

-       I don’t know. I’d rather not count.
-       The people that hired told me you raped their…
-       No. That’s not true.

 The man appeared to want to leap over me but he contained himself. Apparently he thought that I was denying the truth and that made him even more frustrated and confused but the truth was, and still is, that I never raped anyone. I’ve heard the stories, on the news and so on. They said I was ruthless but then they began to say I raped people and that’s just incorrect. If I had any more feelings I would be hurt.

-       They said…
-       You trust too much on your clients. Never thought for a second they could be lying?
-       I talked with them and…
-     Oh yes, because people are incapable of lying when they hire a hitman. Is that what you are because you seem pretty bad at this?

 There. Shaking like a leaf. I know he’s scared of me, thinking I’m some kind of animal, a beast that has to be put down. But the fun thing is that he knows or feels he cannot contain me for long and, most curiously, he seems to think I’m not guilty of this all. Because, why else would he be asking all these questions? Then again, it might be only that he’s fucking scared and he’s just stalling, avoiding the killing.

-       Are you going to kill me anytime soon?
-       Shut up.
-       It was you who began the interrogation.

 The man seemed to be thinking. I bet he was trying to decide what to do next. Maybe he thought that I might be more valuable dead than alive. The police were looking for me, that’s for sure, and I had a reward sign on my head. Apparently he wasn’t as stupid as he looked, thinking of the best way to profit properly from this assignment. He could even surrender me to the police and collect the money all by himself, leaving the other idiot to mend for himself, thinking I was dead.

-       You killed many people.
-       I know.
-       And you don’t regret it?
-       No. Why should I?
-       You’re not sorry? Not even for one of those murders?

 I looked at him carefully, trying to decide what to say. There was something more in all of this, something that had eluded me from the start. The moment they had taken me from my home it had been all about the other guy, the tall one. He had threatened me, put a bag on my head, and pointed the gun straight to my heart. This guy I was with had only driven us to the dock and then had decided to kill me, at the very last minute. And then, it became clear.

-       Don’t tell me that I killed your wife or brother?

 The man went crazy when I said those words. He threw himself at me and started punching me all over: on the face, the chest, the stomach and the head. My hands were still tight behind my back so there wasn’t much I could do except moving violently, in order not only to drive him away but also to make the boat turn sideways to escape swimming. He couldn’t chase me through the ocean.

 But nothing of the sort happened. He just stopped beating the fuck outta me and decided to breath heavily, as far as he could from me. It hurt; I’m not going to say it didn’t. But there was no damage that he could do that would really hurt me. I was beyond all of that at that point. He could have stabbed me and I wouldn’t have cared at all. My lips were cracked, bleeding and all my body was numb from his punches but I wasn’t bad enough to look at him from my corners and smile.

-       Predictable.
-       Shut up…
-    You know, even if you do kill me, nothing is going to bring anyone back? It won’t happen.
-       Shut up!
-       The dead are done. Believe me, I know.

 Then, the guy pulled out the gun and pointed at me. He no longer trembled but he was still sweaty and his eyes were wide open, as if he wanted to be sure of what he was doing. I cleaned my face a bit from my blood without breaking the link between our eyes. Maybe he was going to kill me, maybe this was it for me but it didn’t matter. He was one more of my victims and that was enough for me. So I laughed.

 The bullet pierced right through my brain, coming out the other end and falling in the water. The man pushed my body to the water and left. He knew my body was going to be found and that everyone would know a murderer was now dead. And no one would be interested in knowing who killed me because I deserved it. But, in the end, I knew that just before the end he had been mine and that was all worth it.