Chekered

*So occasionally before I write a screenplay I try to get the creative juices going by trying a short story. This is probably not even the plot I had in mind for the script… But anyway criticism would be highly appreciated…*

It wasn’t the cigarette smoke of the man sitting next to him that suffocated him.

It was the blanket of the cold morning on an empty Maseru that did. It’s what defecting can do to you. Make you hate everything about the world, including yourself. It turns even the vainest of men into walking suicide notes. Hope has a way of bleeding out of you. Rather into you. A hemorrhage of sorts. Secrets that bleed violently into you.

The man beside him drops his cigarette. Walks away and disappears into the void of the Maseru night. I had not anticipated he’d be this smart. The NSS didn’t have a habit of recruiting smart people. Intelligent, yes. But smart very rarely. That is why I am here. Because numbers finally need to eliminate intelligence. “politics are for intelligence in this country, the NSS works solely for and in benefit of those ruling.”
“Then why am I here?” I ask
“Because you are not intelligent.” he replies, “Artists are not intelligent. No man creates worlds from intelligence.” Words of the now exiled founder of Project NGM.
Fact is I can smell the politics in this one. Kill the man and get the Flash. Simple orders. Too simple to be apolitical. It’s the thing with party politics. They have a way of dancing into the wellbeing of a country and it’s up to people like us to make sure the beat is in check. He looks around he is scared now. There is nobody nearby and the streets too empty for his liking. I look at my watch. Walk across the street with heavy strides. I can feel the standard issue Beretta in my pocket. The cold metal body holding its breath. I have no time to think. I aim for his chest and let the crack ripple the silence of the morning.

They say the heart beats fastest when a man dies. But I can see it in his eyes that is a lie. I see his daughter, his wife, his family, his country. I see all he has ever loved rushing through his mind as he struggles with the floor that is reminding him all he will miss. His hands rummage through his memories as he tries to pull one close. It’s probably his daughter. He clings onto her. As the world gets darker and she begins to fade. I let him hug her one last time before I raise my gun again and blast the cold steel into the silence of the night straight into his brain. She flickers away as he tastes blood. Metal and Silence. The truth I finally learn is memories move faster than your heart.

My memories appear where his daughter disappeared. I see her too.
I see fields, long fields and a road side. She is running with a red balloon in her hand attached to a string. It flies. As she let’s go as the sound of a car flying past…

There is an engine rumble behind me. It vibrates sense into me, the driver, a young woman holds a Nikon camera up high. Loud sounds of shutters, whisper into the wind.

I had just been set up.

Black Toyota Corolla imported from a Japanese dealer. She knew what she was doing. The car speeds of as I began rummaging through the pockets of the man I had just killed. I wonder what the charge for stealing from a corpse is. Finally, I can feel it too. The cold of the morning. Traffic holds her for a while as two curious onlookers stop abruptly to come and help the man who just died in my hands. My rummaging is fast and non-productive, my hands running through every line of clothing he has. The men are now jogging towards the scene. My hands get stuck in his inside jacket pocket and I yank the flash out as it drops on to the floor of the cold Maseru street.

“NTATE EMA MO EMENG, O PHAMISE MATSOHO”

This response is too fast for the police and their lack of uniform does not help me. With artistic urgency I fire my Beretta one more time in between the eyes of the man who had yielded a gun on me. I had messed up even more.

The woman finally finds a gap in between the cars and speeds along quickly.

“What do you mean everybody has a choice daddy?”

“I mean just that love,” I respond absent-mindedly to Senate.

“Daddy stop day dreaming when I am talking to you. What do you mean?”

I think she misunderstands how fortunate she is. She can fight her own fights and get away with it. She is fortunate enough not to have fractured her fingers in the process. Fist straight to the nose of the hardened skull of a grade 5 student. I can still see bits of blood on her uniform.

She has blood on her now. I have no idea how much of it is mine. I see fields, long fields and a road side. She is running with a red balloon in her hand attached to a string. It flies. As she let’s go as the sound of a car flying past…

“what do you mean everybody has a choice daddy?”

Even I didn’t know. I connect my eye with the front sight of my Beretta and for the fourth time the loud crack of a police issue gun bellows into the cold morning Maseru wind. The brake lights appear from the car as I hurriedly open the door and order the woman.

“MOVE!”

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