Why did it have to rain?
If it hadn’t, I might have made it through this.
But no, it just had to rain, just as I was running for my life through backstreet London, just when I happened to be wearing the worst pair of fancy shoes in the (Brand name) brand groups. Just when I didn’t have my coat and the worse case of influenza that happened to have graced my existence.
Not that I even had chance to grab the raincoat. You don’t get the chance to do much of anything when you get out of the shower, wearing nothing more than a loose pair of jogging bottoms and a dressing gown, sit downby the television for a good read of your favourite Agatha Christie and shot of brandy, only to realize that your hunter is sitting there right next to you wearing a tweed suit and just that right type of grin to say ‘hi, I’m psychotic,’.
My hunter? I don’t want to own him.
But if there was anything I truly learnt in life, out of all the things that you could pick up with your common sense and say ‘hey, I was the one that figured tat out. Sure it seems obvious when I say it now, but I bet you’d never do it when the times comes’ it was that it’s always good to have a container of liquid in your hands right when the schoolyard bully is coming your way.
A hunter is a lot different to a schoolyard bully I know. Well, not entirely, you’ve got that intent to harm and everything, but the premise is the same. A good stiff shot of brandy right at the eyeballs is enough to distract anyone, psychotic or not.
If I did have to say I made a mistake, it was stopping for the envelope. I suppose thinking about it now I don’t know why I went for it. Anything else would have been better, the kitchen knives for one thing, a acket at the very most. But I suppose somehow I knew wouldn’t have survived even if he hadn’t have hidden them all away from me whilst I was basking in the blissful radiance of my showerhead. The only sharp weapon would have been the glass in my hands and I’m sure he could have bisected me before I even went to smash it against the mehogony coffee stand.
But the envelope made the most sense at the time.
It wasn’t the original envelope of course, it was filled with everything I had determined over the course of these last few months, participating in the game , drawing conclusions where answers didn’t possibly exist. I suppose my aim was for the news to get out should something ever happen to me. Something that would perhaps show what I was involved in, though hopefully never what I did. I know the kids don’t want to see me anymore but if they knew what I was involved in then the only reason they would have would be to urinate all over my gravestone before building a forty five store shopping center over my remains.
It had ever file that someone would need to get at least an inkling of what was going on, and it was all ready to get sent to the Independent should something happen to me. My old acquaintance Johnson worked there, and he would know more than anyone that I never took such matters with hyperbole or satiratity. If it got to him, I could be sure by dammit it that the news would somehow get out to the public.
Though I’m not sure if that would have mattered anyway.
Hell, they’d probably make a few on show out of it.
But even so, I had to try. I still have to try. I don’t want all of this to be for nothing. Sure I’m ric now, but when you’re runningfor someone with that grin and a pace that tells you ‘I can take all the time in the world following you and then appear in front of you the second you run back and all I care about for the next thrity seconds is the sound this blade makes as it severs your cortoid artery’ then money takes a distant place in your thoughts, especially if you’ve left it in your raincoat.
I can’t feel my breath now. Rushing out the apartment door alone took it out of me. Immediately coming into contact with the young Mr. Ellis, our resident drug peddler, and having him thrown every grief from money to his own vomit in my face did not add to the situation in any way that could be considered positive. My only hpe is that his drunken orifices bought me enough just those few extra snippets of time when Mr. Psycho ran into him next. Perhaps he would have thought my hunter to be one of his potential demographic aand spent the few seconds before he was carved into the finest select chunks trying to get a new client for himself.
Even ignoring the young Mr. Ellis, it was amazing at just how many distractions one could incur when desperately trying to leave. My old girlfriend Jennifer at number forty two spent a few seconds trying to spliff up an excuse when I saw her with her latest fling. Why she would even bother trying to communicate when she could get such a handsome young devil’s tongue between her cheeks would have been beyond me if I even stopped to try and consider her as a human being. Instead I pushed pass both of them and immediately projected myself into the air above little jimmy’s skateboard that he had left. Luckily I’ve only sprained my wrist, although the pain is quite mind numbing now, and I’m pretty sure that, along with the cold weather, I can’t feel it or anything else on that side of my body.
Of course, the only problem with this is now I can barely move.
I must have made good time, I remember thinking to myself just that little eternity ago, since he hadn’t sliced me in half just yet. Part of me had opted for the ‘find someone now’ route in which to survive this little ordeal. But the streets of ??? at half four on a Wednesday morning weren’t the best of circumstances for cataching people’s eyes, even if you were limping (especially if you were limping nowadays I suppose). But mind you, I think part of me (perhaps the numb half, I think it includes my brain now) had decded that calling for help wasn’t going to work, or else I would have tried using Jennifer again for something in assitating me.
Regardless of limps, the body makes good time when it needs to, and I found myself about three blocks away in the space of five minutes, trying to figure out if it was enough and damning myself for knowing the answer. Even worse was the fact that finding a post box was now pretty much impossible. I had no idea how this part of town worked. Even before I lost my job there was very little incentive for me to travel up this way. Amazing how a simple choice of uphill and downhill would change a perspective so much. Everyday, I only ever needed to go downhill.
I had figured that the part of my brain that remembers john from next door telling me that was a postbox up here must have been correct to a degree and once it was in there, I would have little to worry about beyond slamming on people’s doors and screaming loudly. Perhaps I should have done this first as it might have resulted in some quicker help when my other ankle decided to take this moment to show that it too had developed an aweful strain and ejected me onto the grainy road.
Now even god himself is urinating on me, the rain falling down in torrents and soaking my last chance at redemption. Oh how I wish I had sent this off earlier, How I wish I had made photocopies of everything that I had ever received and sent it off at the first sign of danger, preferably with one of those dramatic ‘if I should die, please open and read the contents’ type notes.
Mind you, there had been the danger before I had even took it all seriously.
‘There’s always a risk,” john had told me, as he would when he insisted we go for a night out in London’s ‘Shady district’. Even if you were to go out in brad daylight, surrounded by the largest crowd of people you ever knew, and were armed to the teeth with every weapon and every tracking device, all it would take was a passing jet engine with a faulty flange and everything you knew and loved about life would have been gone.
John really needed someone to tell him about the concepts of probability, but it mattered a lot more in my case than I think he thought.
Making jokes now. I guess I must be completely numb. But there’s little else to do now that I can’t move a single cell in my body. Only the automatic functions are working now, and I can see him approaching me. At least I think I can. If only it wasn’t raining, I might have survived this.
He’s standing over me now, with that grin plastered over his face like he thinks he’s the godamn jokr or something. You know it was just a game. It didn’t give you had to become a psychopath or anything. You should know that would only get you so far before the main hero kills you or something.
Though it doesn’t look like I’m going to be that hero this time.
Oh no, not a religious nut. It’s bad enough you coe to my door to talk intelligence theory.
“By the will of God, you shall die!”
Those are not going to be the last words I hear!
Finding some strength, I lift my arm up just in time to feel the blunt shock of my hand being cut in two through my shoulder blade. Screaming, I see my fist reach up to his jaw and take a good lump out of it. It strikes solidly and I revel as he falls back, barely noticing that I’ll never play the piano again if the nearest surgeon isn’t a starvardis himself.
I motion for running but my legs veto the poll, , my fancy (brand name) zero grip shoes taking advantage of the initial verdict to change some of the polls and instead falling on top of him, crushing my knee into his windpipeand watching the most disturbing face in the world exhale. This is just as good in terms of extending my life and I take a second to club him with my useless hand. Everything’s red now and the rain looks like god cut himself shaving and decided to use it to give me an advantage. He cheek recoils with each impact but the grin on his face never diminishes, like he doesn’t actually know how to trun it off or anything. Instead he laughs and I can’t even begin to think whyfore. For the next minutes all I am is this reciprocating engine and stumped flesh hitting him over and over again and wishing to heck and all the nether regions that he would let me have his raincoat after all this.
Then my stump does the unexpected, falling over into a puddle of god’s blood below me, making a contribution to the lord that I wanted to have refunded. It appears he did take my kitchen knive after all. At least I’m glad I didn’t take that option now.
Having enough and just wanting to go home, I fall off him, just catching him taking his time to get up before my left eye hits its circuit breaker and switches off, the last thing I’m able to see being that pretty red pillar box that my dear friend John had told me about and I was sure only existed in legends. That postbox that would have sent my crimson stained envelope off to the world of freedom and truth, even only my eyes weren’t turned off and my legs unsprained and my arms not three feets away and rolling.
And that’s when we’ve gotten to at this point.
Not that there’s any more of course.