La Pluie du Sang.
Rain of Blood.
A Valentine's Day tribute
By Anime Queen
"I can't believe I'm doing this," Annette Morrin impatiently tapped her index finger on the steering wheel of her Peugeot 206. Neither did the petite brunette want to be outside on a rainy day, nor did she want to find herself outside a creepy-looking shack on the outskirts of Paris. "This better be good," she muttered through clenched teeth and drove up the dirt road leading to the back. Pierre's voice was still in her head. He was rushed on the phone, and, in spite of Annette's protests, managed to convince her to come.
"This is very important," he had said.
"Is it dangerous?"
"Pierre, we've been through this – "
"Please Anne, I need you."
She was a little surprised at his tone. He wasn't asking her, he was pleading with her. Normally she never got involved in his dealings – they both decided it was better if nobody knew who she was. What she wanted to know now was what could be so important that he wanted to go against that decision.
She drove up to the back door, and cut the engines. As soon as she got out of the car, the wall of rain came down over her so hard she had to catch her breath. She was soaked instantly, and her bangs plastered onto her forehead. She clutched her handbag close to her chest, and felt the reassuring firmness of her pistol inside. She walked briskly, annoyed at the fact that she had to get wet because of her childhood friend's persuasion power.
"He owes me just for coming here."
Before trying the handle on the door, she pressed her ear to the cold metal. She could hear multiple voices, distinguishing one of them as the one belonging to the subject of her current irritation. She rested against the door for some time, listening for any signs of her being needed inside, frustrated a little at the calmness with which the men and women inside talked. She couldn't understand why Pierre asked her to come if he seemed to be handling the situation perfectly well on his own.
"Look, we had a deal!" Pierre Durand's voice suddenly rose inside the building.
"We are just sticking to what the boss said, ok?" one of the men countered.
"Well those weren't the terms we agreed on!" Pierre kept insisting. He couldn't swallow a deal gone bad. He knew what would happen to him if he didn't get the access codes to the satellite. He was on this mission for too long, and his superiors were getting tired of it. His gun was within easy reach in his pants pocket, but he didn't want to cause unnecessary casualties. Dealing with syndicates required extra care, especially when it was evident that they, too, were armed to their teeth. His only hope at the moment was Annette. But knowing her as well as Pierre did, she might have just as easily ignored the whole thing. He didn't know that she was waiting outside for the opportune moment.
The woman sitting right across from Pierre abruptly got up, rifle held at the ready.
"If you're not going to accept our terms, then forget it," she coldly muttered.
"Attendez!" Pierre was getting desperate, not only for his career, but for his life too.
But the others were seeming to agree with the woman on the fact that this deal was not going to be completed. They were getting up, one by one, ready to leave.
Annette couldn't hear anything for the longest time. She was starting to get worried, but she hadn't heard any gunshots, so she was still hoping for the best.
"He better complete this deal," she thought, "I'm not going to stand here soaking for nothing."
There were no more voices coming from the inside. Pierre could do nothing but watch them leave, trying to swallow his failure. Annette could do nothing but listen hard for any sounds indicating that her involvement was necessary, getting more and more frustrated with Pierre. After what seemed to be an eternity, she heard soft footsteps. The sounds were getting louder, coming at her. She never had the time to run before the door flew open, and she was face to face with a group of suited men and women.
"Monsieur Durand," a tall man drawled, "I believe the conditions were that you come alone."
Annette looked past the armed troupe at Pierre, who was immobilized, staring back at her.
"We don't want any trouble," one of the women brandished her shotgun, "Nothing personal," she smiled thinly at Annette before aiming at her and pulling the trigger in one quick movement. Annette managed to leap back – the only reason the bullet missed her head. The woman, clearly frustrated, fired again, and this time caught the fleeing Annette in the side of her stomach.
Pierre rushed forward, pushing through all the people that were in his way. He has momentarily forgotten about the gun that was still in his pocket. He forgot about everything else the moment he saw the body fall into the mud. Her hair was over her face, and she was not moving when he finally reached her. Upon first glance, it didn't look like she was injured in any way, but when he turned her over on her back, he noticed that her leather jacket had a gaping hole in it. His worst fears were confirmed when he pulled back the material, and his fingers came into contact with warm liquid. His heart broke as he looked at her pale face and tightly shut eyes. He tried to stop the burning in his lungs, but couldn't hold back the violent sobs that escaped through his lips.
Pulling her jacket tighter around her, Pierre turned around half-expecting the syndicate group to still be there. But they were long gone. He cursed quietly, and sank back down onto his knees next to Annette's unmoving form. His annoyance at letting them get away was replaced with anger at himself. If only he hadn't begged her to come, if only he never made that phone call, then she would still be alive. And he would still have a chance to tell her...
He thought he felt her stir in his arms. Sure enough, she was barely keeping her eyes open. He brushed her wet bangs aside, and stroked her cheek.
"Annette... I'm sorry."
Signs of annoyance were showing on her face as well.
"You..." she rasped out. She struggled with her right hand for the gun that she dropped upon impact. Pierre didn't understand until she had a firm grip on the metal and was slowly raising it, as much movement as her injured side allowed. Tears started flowing down her cheeks as she felt for the trigger with her index finger. "You shouldn't have... gotten me... involved," she breathed in a whisper, and Pierre opened and closed his mouth without saying anything. His mind was blank up until the very moment he heard the shot, and felt the sharp pain in his stomach.
Annette's hand dropped the gun a second before Pierre's body hit the ground with a sickeningly wet thud next to her. She lay gasping on her back, as much from emotional pain as from the physical. Pierre's eyes widened in shock at first, but then took on a more complacent look.
"I understand," he whispered, making an effort to look into her eyes. Her head rolled to the side, her eyes almost blank. He struggled to get closer to her; every movement he made sent jabs of pain throughout his body, but he kept moving until he was pressed up against her. He pulled his arms around her, moving her onto her side. The pain from her wound jolted her out of her trance, and she focused on his face. "It's okay, don't cry," he soothed, but her tears kept flowing involuntarily.
"... Pierre..." she made an effort to cling to him, but he was holding her so tight, she could barely move. She compromised with burying her face into his shoulder. The severe blood loss was making her feel extremely dizzy and her head was pounding. She shivered from the unexpected wave of cold that descended over her, possibly from the rain.
He was still trying to come to terms with the fact that they were not going to come out of this alive. He couldn't imagine not being next to her, not being able to hear her voice, not being able to touch her, never hearing her laugh... He just talked to her this morning. She was impatient with him, as always. He felt bad about making her come out in the rain, but he needed to know that she was there if he needed her. His selfishness had now cost them both their lives.
"Je t'aime," he whispered.
Annette pulled back to stare into his face, but couldn't hold the position for very long. Her head fell back onto the ground, but the look of surprise stayed in her eyes. Her strength was slowly leaving her, and she found it harder to breathe.
Their blood was forming a big puddle between them, soaking their already wet and muddy clothes. It grew with the extra rain water, flowing out from under their bodies in little red streams over the uneven mud. The two people on the ground could no longer hear the rain that gently washed them, the sole witness to their demise.
L'amour, c'est la blessure dans la corps, qui n'a pas une marque vers l'exterieur.
Love is a wound in the body that has no outward sign.
A/N: I know this is a bit morbid, but I can't help it ^_^;; Anyways, here are some translations from French:
Attendez! = Wait!
Monsieur = Mr.
Je t'aime = I love you.
Anyways, please tell me what you think. I'm sort of excited to see what kinds of reviews this gets ^,,^