A/N: This is my first story on here, but not my first story I've ever written lol. I got the idea while in my psychology class. I hope you all enjoy it
In a building off a busy night street, a girl was lying on a couch that was much too spacious for her. Its cushions were leather, she noted in a casually indifferent way. The wrinkled surface was cool against her bare legs that were exposed under her loosely fitting caramel dress. It wasn't anything special, nor was it anything drab enough to catch the eye of a fashion conscious person. The dress was just right, she decided, for her to blend in perfectly in any crowd, in any building, on any street. She stretched on her stomach and yawned lazily as the wind ruffled the curtains at the window. The arm of the couch was pressed squarely to the window seal so that the two were in line and as she sat up, she was met with a direct line of sight to the building across the street.
It was a fancy building with large curling cement moldings on every level that wound around the large bay windows. Behind the spotless glass were softly cushioned seats, televisions screens the sizes of walls, vases splashed with gold. And the people, oh the people, were something to be seen. The women were dressed like royalty. Jewels hung heavy around their thin necks and wrists which they casually waved about and laughed. Sitting in her plain cotton dress, the girl felt fairly sure that those women were the equivalent of highly paid breeding dogs. They were nice to look at, and would surely soon outlive their primes. The thought of this gave her a deep sense of pleasure.
"Cain," muttered a teenage boy near the back of the room. His hair, which was the color of barn hay, was ruffled unattractively by a large set of ear phones. A varying array of electronics set in front of him. Some blinked and some buzzed, but they were all up and running as they should have been.
The girl, also known as Cain, sat up without much grace and looked back at him. She merely grunted her acknowledgement of his existence in the room, and waited patiently for the important information that was going to start flowing from his mouth.
He glanced up from his toys with his sunset pink eyes and then back down. "The wind is at 10 mph, North-north-east. Keep in mind that it may be enhanced by the buildings here. Also, the police are currently sending a car to a bar fight 1.5 miles away from our location." His eyes once again dropped on her for a moment, as if checking to see her reaction to this.
If he had wanted to see some change in her expression, he was sure to have been disappointed. She nodded, her look of indifference still plastered on her pale face. "Where is Adam?"
The boy narrowed his eyes only briefly and tapped a microphone that stuck out from his headphones. "Captain Adam, your location?" After a momentary pause, he said, "He is on the first floor. In 10 minutes he'll be moving to the third floor where the snipe is."
She nodded and slid her fingers through her long brown hair. Under her crown and up, she pulled and fastened it into a sloppy bun, but nothing could stop the wispy hair on her hair line from flying away in the wind. "Tell him that is fine," she instructed him. "I'm going to start setting up now."
Without waiting to see his reaction she bent over the edge of the couch and grabbed a large patent leather purse. It really wasn't her type of bag, but under Adam's demands she had given into it. Really, the bright red of it was far too flashy for her taste. As it moved she could hear the heavy parts rubbing against the rough fabric inside. Her short arms heaved it towards her and settled it gently on the sofa's cushions. The zipper was loud as she pulled it open and began piling metal pieces next to her.
Each piece, she knew, fit together perfectly, and as she settled into the well rehearsed movements of reassembly, a simple kind of happiness settled in her chest. It was calming to have the cold metal in her hands. The surface was matt and dull, but to her there was nothing more pleasant to the touch. The barrel fit nicely into its slot, the scope easily attached to the upper portion, and the two pronged stand set under the majority of the weight of the gun.
When she was done she settled onto her stomach again, pushed the gun's barrel past the arm of the couch and settled it in the direction of the opposite building's windows. "I'm all ready to go," she called back to her partner, who was still wrapped up in the machines.
He nodded, eyeing her for a moment. Every time they went out together he always felt a kind of surreal aura settle onto him. Not really from what they were doing. This kind of thing was nothing out of the ordinary, but the fact that she was in a dress was almost distressing for him. Almost, was, of course, the key word. He never really got upset about anything in his daily life, but seeing her bare legs for the first time in months was something strange. It was a shame, he thought blandly, that she always kept herself covered up like she did. Her shoulders were nice too, with their delicate lines, and he glanced over them. With her dark brown hair up in her pathetic attempt at controlling it, her upper body was daringly exposed in the faux light of the city. Without expressing his slight discontent, he spoke to his commander. "Cain is ready. We're waiting for your signal."
After a moment of silence a slightly deeper voice answered him. "Alright, I'm on my way up to the 3rd floor now."
"He's on his way."
He saw the expansion of her rip cage as she made an affirmative sound. The thought occurred to him that maybe she was too good to speak actual words to him at times.
Cain was lining up her scope, checking the safety, and over all, happily fondling the contours of the sniper rifle. It was in perfect working order and she loaded the one round into it carefully. Through the glass she could see the people mingling with each other in the windows. Men wearing nicely tailored suits were being served drinks in fluted glasses by waiters in tuxes. Somewhere, among the many people, was the snipe that they were going after on that occasion. He was a short man with rust colored hair, but that description fit 3 people in the room. She set her lips into a frustrated line and settled into the cushions to wait for Adam to make the sighting.
Out of the corner of her right eye she saw her squad leader appear nonchalantly to the side of the room. He straightened his black vest over the crisp white shirt and surveyed the area. No one seemed to notice his sudden appearance so he picked up a tray of full glasses and began to meander through the crowds. A pleasant smile flashed across his face like an almost forgotten semblance of civility. His smile has always been nice, Cain thought as she watched him through the scope on her rifle. The first day she had met him, that was what she remember the most. His smile, and his eyes, which were usually the same color as her own and Abel's, had given her some sort of hope at normalcy. Now they were covered in dark blue contacts. The oddity of the look made her frown at the older boy with distrust.
He tapped the side of his cheek while handing a drink to a young woman in a Champaign colored dress.
She snapped out of her thoughts quickly. "Ok, where?" she said out loud and searched the area with the scope. "Tell him I don't have a clear shot. Bring him to the window."
The words were repeated quickly behind her and her wide eyes continued to scan the room. Adam's mouth twitched in what looked like a frown for a moment before he disappeared behind the wall that separated the large windows. For a moment, she could feel her shoulders tense. Behind that wall was her mark, and soon, somehow, he was going to appear before her. A smile lifted the corners of her lips as she settled contently into the sofa.
The man, whose hair she thought resembled more of a brick red than rust red, strolled over to the edge of the window following the waiter. Standing in his tux, he beckoned towards the man until he was standing well within the range of her shot.
She rolled her hand over the hair that sprung up in messy wisps from her scalp and lowered her hand to the trigger. In the scope she could see his red hair that was covered in a thin layer of oil. For a moment, her mind tricked her into smelling the hair treatments musky, deep odor, and then it was past and she was settling her right index finger onto the curved piece of metal.
Adam seemed to laugh politely at the man, and the mark grinned a robust smile in return.
"Take the shot, Cain," Abel muttered. "I'm getting tired of sitting here."
"Shut up," she said. She adjusted the scope towards the right as she compensated for the wind. Wind at 10 mph was enough to adjust half a notch to the side. Finally, she took a deep breath, and slowly, steady, released it. The gun kicked on its stand and the glass across the street shattered. A body quickly fell and sprawled across the floor, but so did everyone else in the room. The screaming, which usually would have been a good sign to her, suddenly made her insides run cold. "Get your things together, Abel. We need to go."
His eyes, the color of bubblegum, rounded as he snapped his gaze to her. "You didn't miss did you?"
She was already on her knees beside the couch, half the gun tucked into the obnoxious purse. "He moved at the last second." Her eyes closed tightly as a feeling of fury rumbled in her chest. "Is Adam getting out?"
Cain had missed her mark? The very idea was some foreign concept that prodded his brain. She had been trained by the best. Hell, even the best of the best had acknowledged her skills. He slammed his fist into the wooden table before he began shoveling his transmitters into a worn out book bag. She had missed. No matter what excuses she came up with, the ending of this drama was not going to go well for her and therefore, not well for him either. "God damn it, Cain!" he growled as they both stuffed their belongings into their bags.
"Shut up!" she yelled and zipped up her bag furiously. In a flash, she was on her sandal clad feet and rushing towards him.
He flinched, leaning away from the rampaging girl.
"What are you doing?" she snapped as she began unplugging his contraptions from the walls and flinging the cords behind her.
His mouth opened to speak, but feeling a nervous stutter starting on his tongue, he closed his lips. In moments, the electronics were safely packed away and the room had been vacated.
The pair took the back stairs, leading towards the loading dock of the hotel. Their shoes clacked on the concrete of the high platform as they both glanced around nervously.
"Don't look so anxious," the dark haired girl whispered as her eyes, which were a similar color to his, searched the alley way. In the depth of the night, strange shadows seemed to lurk behind everything.
"Take your own advice, woman." He glared at the girl whose bare shoulders looked rock hard with tension.
She huffed and closed her eyes. Her thin fingers pushed themselves to her collar bone as she inhaled deeply. The breath rushed out of her and as it did, her muscles turned to jelly.
Abel sneered at her, though she didn't bother to notice his expression. "It looks clear. We should meet up with Adam."
"So he made it out, then?" she asked as they made their way from the platform and onto the asphalt. It was still warm from the heat of the day and warmed her bare toes.
Abel nodded. "Last I heard, he did."
As they casually walked from the alley, they morphed into the crowd on the street where onlookers were muttering to each other about an explosion in the opposite side building. Without thinking, Cain slipped her hand around Abel's upper arm and leaned on him dotingly.
He glanced down at her and felt a nervous anxiety in his stomach.
"Don't look so uptight. We're supposed to be a couple out for a walk. Just relax." The girl let out a light laugh and hugged his arm to her chest as if she had never known anyone wittier than him.
"Of course, baby," he said with a smile as he yanked his arm from her grasp roughly and slung it around her shoulders.
The girl leaned into his side. "Your dimples are showing," she cooed, though the soft form of her lips didn't scratch the coldness in her gaze.
"Oh? They are my most charming feature, you know," he chuckled and cupped her upper arm in his hand.
She eyed his fingers as if maybe she was thinking of ripping them off, but she only smiled leisurely at him. "It's your only charming feature."
His shoulders shrugged. "It's your opinion."
Silence enveloped them for what seemed like ages as other couples and strangers walked past them. "Where is that restaurant at again, sweetie?" he gushed.
She looked up at him. "You mean, you don't remember?"
He paused, caught in an awkward moment. "I'll find it."
Her lips turned up in a smirk. "Don't worry. It's up here on the right."
"I knew that."
"Like hell you did," she muttered under her breath and shrugged his hand off her shoulder. "We should be getting there the same time as Adam, so let's wait outside a bit."
The blond haired boy nodded silently as they set themselves into a nook on the street. It was only a few feet away from a small restaurant filled with people that were shoveling large sandwiches into their mouths. Plates were filled with French fries and bottles of ketchup sputtered rudely.
Cain looked up and down the street. In the constantly shifting throng of people, she couldn't make heads or tails of Adam's existence. It wasn't that she was worried about the older boy. It was merely self preservation, she admitted to herself. After all, she had never felt any worry for anyone in all the days she had lived in the world.
"There he is," her partner said and pointed at stomach level towards their left.
She punched him in mock playfulness, and looked towards the way he had pointed with a carefully blank expression.
And there he was, strolling down the side walk as if nothing in the world could bother him. He had short brown hair that was straight and fell in front of his face if he didn't handle it regularly. Upon sighting the two teenagers, he waved and smiled broadly.
She found herself putting her hands together as if to ring them, but stopped herself. Instead, she waved daintily and returned his grin.
As he walked up, his smile dropped off his face and was replaced with a look of only barely concealed panic. "Cain!"
Her skin crawled. "Y-yes, captain?"
He grabbed her shoulders, pulling her forward a half step, and then stopped. Tension hung in the air between them as he starred at her. "What happened?"
She ground her teeth uneasily. "He laughed."
"When he laughed he leaned back… I missed the shot."
The older boy's blue eyes searched her face earnestly before he dropped his hands from her. "I see."
She lowered her head and stared at her toe nails that were painted a shimmering cream that attracted neither scorn nor compliments. "I'm screwed, aren't I?"
Abel shifted uncomfortably to her right, but Adam set his hand on her shoulder again.
Their eyes, one set pink and the other blue, met in understanding. The oddity of the moment struck her as she fell deep into his expression of concern. No one had ever looked at her like that in her whole life, and it made her hair stand on end.
"Don't worry, Cain. You're an essential part of the organization. It will be fine, I promise," he said softly.
Blood was flushing her face now and she looked away in shock. "Captain," she started, but was interrupted.
"Adam," he corrected her.
She cleared her throat. "Adam. Thank you."
He pulled her into a fierce hug that left her gasping for more than one reason. "Don't mention it, Cain. We're family, right?" he laughed.
She nodded numbly. Family? They were in fact considered a family unit by the organization, but it felt strange to hear it.
Abel coughed roughly.
The two separated themselves and Adam chuckled. "You want a hug too, Abel?"
"Not a chance," he muttered, looking down the street and away from his comrades.
"Good, because I wouldn't hug you anyways." He looked past them towards the restaurant. "You have any appetite, you two?"
Abel remained silent as he looked away and the girl shook her head.
"Ah, well, alright. I guess it's time to go report then. Ready?"
In reality, she wasn't ready even in the slightest, but there was nothing she could do. She clenched her fists and readjusted the heavy purse hanging on her shoulder. "Yeah, we can go."
Adam eyed her silently before putting his hand on her back and coasting her gently down the street where their small car was waiting.