Part I - Exhinition
The life may leave my lungs,
Despair choked my chest with its bitter grip as I ran through the alley, tripping over my own unsteady footsteps, colliding against the brickwork as I swallowed each sob like cyanide. Reaching a dead end I sank to my knees, welcoming the solid bitumen with my shaking hands, the blood stains falling like flaking rust.
I pulled the diamonds from my jacket, feeling their cold points needle my palm as I stared at them in disgust, Charlie's life reflected through their primed facets as nothing more than a faded crimson tint.
I could remember his breath on the back of my neck, his touch against my face, being replaced by the burning anger in my veins, the fear, the ignorant faces terrified, the chaos in the plaza.
The memory of not being able to save him.
"I'm sorry for your loss"
The air was forced from my lungs like an exorcism as the street blurred around me. The diamonds were coated in new colour as I clenched my fists, preparing for the impact as I felt my body yanked into nothingness, a burst of dust as I was flung through the air to land rolling across a rooftop. Stolen from the shadows to be thrust out into the light.
As soon as the ringing subsided I breathed life back into my lungs, trying to clear the spots from my eyes as I adjusted to the sudden distortion of my presence.
"That's the customary sentiment to make isn't it?"
Feigning light headedness I picked myself up, sliding a blade from my high tops with the slow movement. Shielding my eyes against the setting sun, I stared straight through him, his words echoing in my mind, words coated in irony and disdainful amusement.
He said he can help us.
"Angel, I can understand if you need a moment," he said, turning his back and making a show of trying to clean a spot from his spectacles. "But I do need to finish this business up rather soon".
I don't trust him.
I couldn't save Charlie; but this man is the reason he's dead. Gripping the knife with savage satisfaction I sprang into a run across the deserted rooftop, ready to plunge this steel straight through his empty heart.
Then I saw the broad vindictive smile reflecting in the dusk lit glass of his spectacles and stumbled.
Spinning around he caught me by the throat, forcing me to a standstill as he raised me to my toes, my hands fell limp, the blade and diamonds clattering to the concrete beside his forgotten glasses.
Holding my head high I ignored the pinch against my windpipe, staring out over the bleeding sky as the sun burned itself beyond the skyline. It was almost peaceful.
Cajoling the precious stones into the air he chose the one most tainted by my living pain with his free hand, stepping to the edge of the rooftop to let it catch the last dying rays.
"I dearly missed that sparkle in your eyes Angel," he mused, collecting the diamonds into his jacket pocket. "Such a shame we never saw eye to eye" he said pointedly, turning his full attention to me, chuckling at my attempts to avoid his gaze.
"That's very rude to ignore someone when they are speaking to you Adrianna" tightening his grip for emphasis to close off the last draft of oxygen. "Didn't Charlie ever teach you better?" he taunted.
Feeling my lungs beginning to cave, my muscles cramping, I turned my gaze to his, seeing the nightmare he hid behind those antique spectacles, and it burned more painfully than any hatred, it was as though I could feel it tearing a hole through my soul.
Bringing me closer he placed those sneering lips next to my ear, his breaths a mockery of the needling pain in my chest crying out for life. "Give my regards to the boy," he whispered, before casting me out into to the darkening sky.
To be continued...
but my heart will stay with you.