Oh look, another story. I was writing the next chapter for Animosity when this just kind of…happened. So yeah. I just wrote it without any plans to post it but I'm bored so I figured what the hell, might as well. And that rhymed.
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Stupid fucking rain.
What's the point of it anyway? I mean, sure, it makes the grass grow and yadda yadda yadda, but can't we just invent something to take care of that? We're supposed to be the most intelligent species alive, remember? If we can have musical condoms, surely we can invent something to replace water. Right? Right.
Why do I hate the rain, you ask? For starters, it's wet. Wet and me don't mix well. Plus… my hair.
Ah, my hair.
My gloriously beautiful locks! I'm having a love affair with my own hair. How could I not? It's the coolest colour, black I guess, but when light hits it, it tints blue. I'm not quite sure how that works, but hey! I'm not complaining. So anyway, it's this fricken' gorgeous rich colour and hangs down to my waist like a pretty waterfall. Yep, waist. Pretty long, no? I have to keep it in a neat braid. It drives my girlfriend Emma nuts, the way I fawn over it.
But whenever rain decides to pay a visit, oh boy. My hair complains quite loudly. It frizzes, it mats and it turns into pure string. For this reason I hate water. Fortunately, it hates me too. It's a mutual thing. I'm happy to say we've both accepted this.
But it still likes to piss me off every now and then. Like right now.
I whimper, hovering in the doorway of Sundance Art Gallery, the town's best (only) gallery. I wonder if I can crash the night here, in the back room maybe.
"Jack." Susan is glaring at me with her horrible little green eyes. She's a vastly overweight woman with a heap of stringy brown hair, hairy armpits and one single eyebrow instead of two separate ones. She also hates my guts and would love nothing more than to beat me to death with her little green clipboard. The only reason she hired me was because my uncle begged her to. My uncle. Who she happens to be dating. Ew. There's some scary mental images for ya. "Go."
"But it's wet!" I whine, giving her my best puppy dog expression. This, with my crater-size blue eyes, isn't too hard. "I'll catch a cold and die!"
Note for future reference: puppy eyes don't work on Dragon Lady. Damn. Her sausage fingers tighten on the clipboard edges, her eyes narrow. Ooh, she wants to kill me. "Jack." She repeats warningly. "Go. Now."
I hate her. Evil sadistic bitch! Bah!
I peer out through the wall of rain. Of course, my car is parked at the other end. Right at the other end. Stupid, stupid, stupid. But how was I to know it would rain? The sky looked perfectly blue and innocent this morning. Evil, conniving rain.
Taking a deep breath, I clutch my tatty grey messenger bag to my side, throw my free arm over my precious hair and run. Splashing through the rain, water ruining my brand new jeans, squealing like a little girl. In a very manly way, of course.
And why is it that when it rains, I suddenly have the agility of a 3 year old on roller-skates? I drop my car keys twice. It takes me another five seconds just to open the damn door. Once it's open, I throw myself in, dumping my bag on the passenger seat. I don't put a towel down first, even though I know Emma will kill me for it. Sometimes she acts like it's her car, not mine. It was my 20th birthday present from my mother, a cute little black Hyundai Getz. She bought it simply because she liked the ads for it. She's an odd one, my mum. One day I'll buy another car. Something bigger shinier, with no roof. When I plant the money tree in my backyard. Just let me get the backyard first. I have a balcony, does that count?
It's nearly seven o'clock and it's Thursday, so traffic is awful. Stupid bloody shoppers everywhere. What is it about Thursdays anyway? Luckily I don't live too far away from the gallery. I live in apartment 11 of a pretty decent block called Sunset Court. Cute, huh? All these names with 'Sun' in them.
I don't even bother checking the underground car-park. I know it'll be packed. Stupid rain. It's out to get me. So I park outside and fling the door open. I'm already soaked to the bloody bone, so getting wet doesn't bother me so much anymore. I lock the door and dammit, I'm freezing. I want to get inside and crash.
And that's when I notice some serious movement from the corner of my eyes. I turn, just in time to see something crash into the road. From the sky. Oh my fricken' god. Like what the hell just falls out of the sky?! A bird? That's one bloody big bird.
I'm about to rush over there when it moves. Sorry, one of them moves. Gets up on its hands and knees, wobbles unsteadily and groans.
Birds do not groan. People groan. Shit.
I rush over. "Oh my god! Are you alright?! Where the hell did you come from?!"
There are two of them, the one on their hands and knees and another slumped in an unceremonious heap.
"Uh…yeah. I think so." The one on their hands and knees groans. I grab her arm and help her up. Stare at her. She's dressed as a maid, right down to the frilly apron, fishnet stockings and the cute, short black dress. A frilly white headband pokes out from her short dark hair. "Kaede!" She kneels down beside the other guy.
"Is he alright?" I start to panic. Ah, crap, two people drop out of the sky, what am I meant to do?! Dammit, why me?! I'm no good in emergencies!
"Kaede?!" She turns him over onto his back. He does not look good. He's wearing one of those transparent mesh shirts and through it I can see the huge purple bruise covering his left side. His (chestnut? Some type of brown) hair is plastered to his pale forehead; he's having serious trouble breathing. I'm not a doctor, but his right arm is definitely broken. It's bent at an odd angle and god… what the hell happened?
"Shit!" I curse. What the hell do I do?! Why me?! Why couldn't some other poor bastard have spotted them?! The maid gets a little frantic.
"Kaede! Answer me you jerk!" She pauses and suddenly slaps the poor guy straight across the face!
"Hey!" I cry, grabbing her gloved hand. "He's hurt, for fuck's sakes! Where the hell did you come from?!"
She raises her hand, points up at the sky. "Obviously." In a scornful voice, as though I asked a totally stupid question. So we're here in the middle of the street in the pouring rain, soaking wet. What the fuck am I meant to do?!
'Call an ambulance!' My ever-helpful brain yells. And that's a great idea, except I've left my bloody phone in the apartment. Shit. I'm panicking. I need to calm down. Focus and breathe. I take a couple of slow deep breaths and turn back to the maid, watching Kaede anxiously.
"Come on, I'll take him to the hospital."
The maid claps her hands joyfully, as if this is just one fun little joyride. I somehow manage to pick Kaede up, trying not to disturb his arm. He trembles against me violently, his eyes screwed shut.
"D-Don't fucking t-t-touch me…" He gasps, jerking a bit. I ignore it and prop him against the car whilst I fumble for my keys. His head lolls onto my shoulder and I can see a small thin tattoo along his neck. I think it's a barcode but who gives a shit about that right now? I have to get him to a hospital.
I open the passenger door and lay him on the seat as carefully as possible, right on top of my bag but that doesn't matter right now. His breathing is shallow and ragged, gasping and wheezing. He coughs, jerks, blood dribbles out the side of his mouth.
I rush into the driver's side and the maid's already in the back seat, gazing up at the roof, her hands folded neatly in her lap. I start the car and take off, the windscreen wipers going crazy. Why me?! Why today?! Why?!
Stupid fucking rain.
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