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Fiction, Short Fiction, Science Fiction
by: Derek Hawkins
I pursued my target into a dead end back alley in Denebula City. The fool had run himself into the trap. He was caught in the short end of an "L" shaped alley. On three sides my target was faced with service doors leading into the backs of merchant buildings in the market place, all locked. I stood on the fourth side, the only way out of the alley. There were a few crates stacked about in the dead end alley, and I heard the target as he dove behind one stack of crates to hide, only prolonging the inevitable.
"You'll never take me alive!" he shouted. They always say that, right before they get captured, sometimes kicking and screaming, sometimes meek and whimpering. This guy had seen too many holo dramas and obviously the bad ones for my taste. If he thought he was going to make it out of this spot alive and free, he had to be on some good drugs. I could hear the target moving around behind his crates on my right. I mentally ran down the list of neuro-stimulants and their possible effects in my mind, preparing my self for anything, just in case. The target had no known drug preferences, but that didn't mean he wasn't on something right now. Hell, you had to be off your mental rocker to try and swindle a Kanous crimelord.
If you've been in my line of work as long as I have, then you'd have seen it all like I have. This guy was living out a bad holo drama, and the endings are always the same. The insult should be coming right about....
"No bottom feeding scum like you will ever catch me Sendahl!"
Yep, there it was, right on cue. I kept my voice calm, loose, in a casual tone and volume. "Alive or dead, doesn't matter to me. You go down and the job is done one way or the other. The only ones who will care if your alive or not are Zenra and the Guild." I clicked the safety on my blaster off, rather loudly for effect too. Now the target would wonder if I was set for stun or kill. "Zenra," I continued, "wants you alive so that she can 'talk' to you about things. The Guild will take a few credits more from the reward for 'paperwork' fees if your dead." I stepped closer to the stack of boxes he was hiding behind. "Either way, I get paid and the customer gets satisfied."
"Never!" he shouted from somewhere above head height. So that's what he was up to. Trying to climb up and get to the roof. This flashed through my mind only briefly though, and boxes came tumbling down at me.
I raised one arm to protect myself from the boxes and raised my blaster in the other hand. Too late, I decided as I saw the target's blaster light up crimson. I felt the warm pleasant tingling in my chest rapidly turn into a raging inferno of heat and pain. The sensation repeated itself in my right arm, I noticed. But it was only faintly that could I feel the pain in my arm. Then I saw black.....