Author: Engraved.in.Ink PM
In mankind's pursuit of perfection, I was created. In my creation, a human conscience was born. Because of my birth I am now hunted. But in this hunt, I do that which I was created to do. What I was born to do. My name is Aster, and this is my story.Rated: Fiction T - English - Chapters: 4 - Words: 4,255 - Reviews: 4 - Favs: 3 - Follows: 5 - Updated: 05-19-13 - Published: 05-31-11 - id: 2919672
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
"Aster," Jack started, grabbing the fallen woman by the elbow and jerking her to her feet. Aster looked around, startled, as Mike was helped up by the newcomer. "Aster, what the hell happened?"
The room was spinning, and it was making Aster nauseous; a feeling she hadn't felt in a long time, and one that she had hoped she would never feel again. "Jack," she closed her eyes and licked her lips, trying to regain her senses. She knew this looked bad. "Jack, he's got...he's got a—"
"Jack," Mike said, cutting Aster's words off. She snapped her eyes open at the sound of his voice, but then instantly regretted it. If Jack hadn't still had his grip on her arm, Aster was certain she would have toppled over. "It's my fault."
"Mike, what the devil happened?" the newcomer asked, patting the older man on the back. "I just come in for a drink and you're flyin' halfway across the bar! You alright?"
Nodding, Mike shrugged his shoulders and straightened up. Then, turning his gaze back to the young bar owner, continued with his explanation. "We were joking around, having a laugh," Mike started, adjusting the collar of his leather jacket. "Talking about that Old Earth whiskey you bought. Good find, by the way—"
"Mike," Jack cut in, loosening his grip on Aster's arm but not taking his eyes off the older man. "What happened?"
Her head was pounding, but Aster tried to ignore the pain. She kept her eyes pinned on Mike, pressing closer to Jack as he continued with his story; Jack was the only normal thing in this whole situation, and normal was what she needed right now.
"Like I said, Jack, it was my fault. Ol' flirt that I am, I was gonna compliment her looks and give her a tip," he looked at Aster, almost apologetically, and Aster felt the ground beneath her feet give way. "I must've said the wrong thing, though."
'You truly are an idiot.' Aster scolded herself as Jack turned his disbelief back to her.
"Aster, what the hell?"
Shrugging her shoulders, Aster looked around at the three men in the room, their eyes glued upon her, awaiting her response. Then, turning to Mike, she offered a halfhearted, sympathetic grin and let perhaps the sorriest excuse that she had ever heard slip through her lips. "Sorry, Mike. But I don't accept tips from an old fart on his birthday."
It was a horrible way to justify her actions, Aster knew that, but it was enough for Mike and the newcomer to laugh, albeit hesitantly, before shrugging their shoulders and asking for another round of that Old Earth whiskey.
Jack, however, kept his grip on her elbow. "Jack," Aster started, glancing down at his hand. "Our customers are thirsty."
"I'll serve 'em," he replied, slowly removing his grip from her arm but his gaze never wavering. "You just go on home. Take the rest of the day off, and take it easy."
'That's probably for the best.' Nodding her head, Aster slowly walked around the bar to grab her coat. Apologizing to Mike one last time and once more wishing him a pleasant birthday, she waved to Jack and headed out the door.
'This paranoia needs to end, girl,' she thought as she shrugged on her coat and hitched a left onto Walker Boulevard, 'and soon, before you end up getting someone killed.'