Bazooka 9

The headache woke me up before anything else. Dirt clogged my nose as I fought through the blinding light overhead to gain some baring. Squirming, I discovered myself incapacitated with ropes, dragged along the ground like a sack of potatoes by none other than Annett in her knee high boots. She glanced over her shoulder, hearing my struggles. “Mike,” she began. “You are under arrest for the robberies of seven banks, assault, eluding police, resisting arrest, lewd conduct─”

“Lewd conduct?” I cried. “Lady, who─ what─” I looked around to see nothing recognizable. Were we in the desert? I looked behind our trek to see the city, my home, growing smaller by the step, surely being replaced with a wasteland of sand and heat. Finally the last few moments I remembered before blacking out hit me. “Are Santa and Bonnie all right? How could you break their window like that? They just got married you know! Where are we? I’m the wrong guy! Why are you dragging me on the ground? I can walk!” I spilled out rapidly. A bump in the road jarred me as Annett continued her task. “Didn’t you hear what I said? I know you’re a bounty hunter and I know you’re after this Mike guy who robs banks, but that’s not me. Look, Shorty can explain everything─”

“Shorty?” Annette stopped. “You saw Shorty?”

“She decked me in the face.” I replied lamely.

“Wow, you really are weak.” Readjusting the rope slung over her shoulder she soldiered on. “Shorty’s a low level wannabe. She’s never bagged a bounty the entire time she’s worked in the business. If even she could lay hands on you…” She faded away into a low chuckle, growing into a riotous mirth. Contrary to all appearances Annett’s cool exterior was a lie. She was bat-shit crazy. Not because of the reckless way she wielded her many deadly weapons, but because of her laugh. It wasn’t creepy, or bone chilling, or evil. To an outsider it might even sound a little funny. But from my bound position on the ground it just sounded like a wack-job’s laugh: long, loud, and overly dramatic. 

“Are we going to a police station? We aren’t even in the city anymore. And can you please stopping dragging me over desert rocks? My legs do work, last time I checked…”

A clap of thunder broke my stream of complaints, echoing off thin air over the flat wasteland. Great, I thought. It’s going to rain and I’ll get muddy. Annett stopped at the sound. Unconsciously her grip tightening on the robes. Then I could sense it. Something was coming. Following her intense gaze I saw a cloud of dust in the distance prophesying the coming of something big. Really big.

“What’s that?” I asked faintly.

“Him.” Annett said.

“Him who?”

“His name is Him.” She clarified. “I suppose it was only a matter of time.”

I wanted to yell. I wanted to shout at the woman who kidnapped me and make all sorts of accusations and demands. But the thundering was growing. “Should we be running?” I whispered.

“We wouldn’t make it very far. Besides,” letting go of my rope she reached between her shoulder blades and pulled out a sawed-off shotgun. “That’s not really my style.” About to argue my case, for running away had certainly proven itself to be my style, I stopped short as a figure came into view. “Shut up,” Annett said. “And try not to cry.”

I whimpered and curled into a huddled mass, hoping to adapt the look of an insignificant insect. The next moment a man, if you weren’t too strict with the term, stopped before us. His shadow could eclipse a group of children playing soccer on a hot day. A five foot, neon green mohawk ran up his head like a neon flag presiding over a crew of chains, piercings, and tattoos. He smiled and revealed rows of purposefully sharpened-to-a-point gold teeth. Any other day and I might have laughed, but not now. Now, not even the woman who hunted me down and hogtied me ran such a chill up my spin. “Hello little lady,” Him spoke in a deep southern accent. “Long time no see. That’s him, right?” His sight turned to me. “I’m gonna need what you got.” Annette fumed silently, which I had a growing suspicion she did often. Then it hit me. This guy was a bounty hunter. Of course.

Displaying strength you can’t buy Annett hurled me away, sending me flopping to a stop a few yards away near a cactus. Heedlessly she raised her gun, aiming at the giant’s head. She emptied the barrels. Him laughed, unscathed. I blinked to make sure the desert heat hadn’t gotten to me. Sure enough, Him stood tall without a drop of blood to show for all of Annett’s hardware. Tisking, Annett threw her gun away in favor of something bigger. I blinked and she held her rocket launcher. “Oh shit,” I managed to get out before a battle of warriors began before me. The sight was quite impressive, but amidst the chaos and distraction I managed to get away.  

“How?” Officer Buck asked, leaning forward eagerly to hear.

“I got to my feet with the aid of a cactus and hopped away while they fought. I couldn’t even hope of untying the ropes by myself, so I wandered in my bound state looking for a recognizable land mark to point me back towards the city. You wouldn’t think Annett could have drug me that far way while I was unconscious, right?”

“Right.” Buck nodded.

“Wrong!”

Bazooka 8

I sat on quite possibly the ugliest couch I’d ever had the unfortunate experience of sitting on, next to a beaming bearded man I wasn’t sure I felt comfortable with.

“Hello!” A voice sung. The waitress from the diner twirled out of the kitchen of the quaint house at the end of a block the bearded man brought me to, holding a tray of cookies. Setting the plate before us I leaned in and took a whiff. Yup, freshly baked all right.

“I’m sorry,” I began.

“Don’t be!” The old man slapped me on the back. “It’s not your fault you have such lousy taste in women. You can never tell the difference between the normal ones and the ones carrying an AK-47 in their back pocket, if you know what I mean.” He elbowed me roughly.

“Actually,” I said. “I was going to say I’m sorry I don’t know your names.”

The two looked at each other in surprise. “That’s true,” the waitress said. “We don’t know your name either.”

“Santa is the brand,” the old man reached over and gripped my hand, giving it a good manly squeeze.

“I’m Jezebel, but you can call me Bonnie.” The waitress smiled.

“Mike.” I stated lamely. Taking a bite of a cookie I found it to be delicious. I suddenly became painfully aware I’d missed breakfast and grabbed another. “I didn’t expect to see you two still together.” I said between bites.

“Why wouldn’t we be together?” The waitress asked, sitting in a chair across from us.

“Why are you still together?” I looked between the two with that odd feeling growing in my stomach.

They looked at one another with smiles. They went back and forth in hushed tones. No, you tell him sort of lines. Finally a voice, I can’t remember who it came from, spit it out. “We got married!”

“… What?” The waitress held up her left and, sure enough, a small silver ring glinted on her finger. “It’s been a day,” I managed to get out. “It’s literally been a day.”

“Young love,” Santa smiled. “You know how it goes bub,”

“You’re, like, a hundred years old…”

“We thought it was about time.” The waitress nodded.

“It’s been a day!” I exclaimed.

“A lot has happened,” Santa reasoned.

“You got married!”

“We did,” they cooed in unison, sending each other googly-eyes. I gagged. Santa courteously patted me on the back. “We wanted to thank you for introducing us.” Bonnie continued.

“But enough about us,” he said. “What have you done with yourself all this time?” I raise an eyebrow and ate another cookie, not sure what to say. “Come on,” Santa prodded me.

Sighing, I told the whole story from beginning to end. The chase after the diner blowup, wandering around the city, Shorty catching me, the other Mike wanted for bank robbery, the bounty, and Annette. Silence hung in the air.

“Wow,” Bonnie rested her head in her hands. “That’s so… unfortunate.”

“That reminds me of a story,” Santa chimed in.

“Not now dear, can’t you see Mike needs help?” Santa drew back sullen. Bonnie thought hard. “Why don’t you just catching this man yourself? You don’t have a job;  you could become a bounty hunter!” She sat back, awful proud of herself. I thought and thought and thought about it, staring at the floor in concentration. Santa and Bonnie slowly leaned forward in anticipation. I blinked and looked up.

The front window to Santa and Bonnie’s house exploded in a shower of glass. Through the hail a figure leapt through the opening. A flash of floral yellow gave way to caramel skin. The woman, Annett, hung midair, suspended in time as I gazed up at her. She drew her arm back and slugged me with brass knuckles, knocking me out cold.

Update

Sorry for not updating the past two weeks; life became hectic and one thing leads to another. But I’m back with some new material I’m hopeful you guys will like. And how many of you guys there are! 150 followers!! Thanks for that!

In addition to my usual material I’m considering writing an ongoing series based on my job as a pharmacy technician. Though the actual job is a little lack-luster my work environment can be quite entertaining. Nothing is set in stone but don’t be surprised if something alone the lines comes down the shoot soon.

Thanks again for your time and attention. Much love~

April