Monday, July 25, 2011

A Murder of Mosquitoes Moths and Gnats

              It's another night where I can't sleep and this time we're blaming you, Nick. Apparently you don't remember that we have toned down our act, vato. Or do you remember what happened in the Desert? Do you remember why you couldn't find the bodies?
            Someone's creeping around the forest outside and it sounds like the steps are too light for there to be anyone around, and Naomi's not talking to me again. And by not talking to me I mean every so often she takes a book off the shelf in the living room and lobs it in here. Last time, she almost smashed the monitor, which would mean these happy little missives wouldn't reach your ears at all. All three of you. Naoms has graduated from a very slim copy of Fables and Reflections and is now throwing a copy of The Stand at me.
            "Okay, talk."
            "No more rampaging."
            And right then is where I shut off. "It was supposed to happen."
            "No, no it fucking wasn't. You have no idea what you're doing."
           "So tell me what I'm doing. It's not that hard. You even like it."
           I am blindsided by a book to the side of my head. It. Stephen King. Hardcover. Kind of appropriate. We're trying to fight a child-snatching monster and the first thing she brains me with is a copy of It.
           "Shut the fuck up." Naomi snaps. "If you ever do anything like that again, it's over. You brought us together, and I'm glad you did that, but don't you fucking dare kill any more people you don't have to. I will hamstring you and let someone else do it if I have to."
            Adam's sitting in the living room and I can see him mouthing along to choicey bits in the conversation like it's his favorite song or something. The footsteps are coming closer to the house, but I can't see anything yet. Naomi's going on and on.
             "There will be more if you do that. You're familiar with the concept, right? You--" she realizes that 'fuck a hornet's nest', her usual standby is not the right phrase to use with me. Particularly not when I rush my enemies naked. She awkwardly changes words, "kick a beehive, and no matter how many angry bees you kill, they're going to overrun you."
               "So what do you suggest we do?"
               "You say you're a master of something. Masters happen to knock their opponents out with no difficulty. What they don't do is kill people as a matter of course. If you're defeating them and leaving them alive, they'll either go full abomination so we can sic Constance on them, or they'll go running back to their masters. Just don't..."
               The sound of a thump makes us both leave the diminished safety of the window. Something's walking around on the stones outside, and a circle of light shines through the window. I forgot to turn the overhead light on in the room. Oh, fuck.
               We freeze and the light stays by the window. It's a perfect circle, not a flashlight, and it stays there before moving towards the backyard. I flick on the light, but it's gone by the time I get up, and no one else has seen a damn thing. The light footsteps continue, and for a moment I think I can see something peeking in through the top of the turret, but whatever it is, it's gone when I look over there. Fuck, this thing scares me. I know what it isn't but I don't know what it is. I take another swig of rum (the rum is important) and get back to figuring out what the hell I'm supposed to do.
               "Just don't keep killing them." Naomi finishes. "Or it will only make it worse. You don't pick at a cut, you treat it and leave it alone."
               God help me I can't believe her, but I can at least nod and try.


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