Blood and Whiskey
Third july... New York...
Cid and Vincent were standing on top of the Empire State Building. They didn't really know why they had decided to get all the way up there but it seemed as the only thing reasonable to do when you're in the so called "big apple". Vincent had trouble seeing why in the world they would call a city like New York "the big apple".
"Looks more like an grape to me." he said.
"Why the fuckin' hell would you compare it with a fuckin' grape?" Cid answered in his normal, unfriendly voice.
"Grapes are easier to crush." Vincent said and smiled so that Cid could catch a glimpse on his teeth.
The conversation was over and Cid went in to get something to drink. When he got back he was carrying four beer... Vincent thought it looked very tricky to handle.
"All they had was Bud... 'course you could just nip in there an' flash yer big, white fangs of yours an' order them to go out an' get us some whiskey or something... an' they would have to obey you, you know."
"Why's that?" Vincent asked.
"Well... presumably 'cause you'll threaten 'em to life or something?" Cid replied and handed Vincent two beers, "Come to that, you could've walked into the Ritz Carlton an' gotten us a couple've suites, an' then we wouldn't be stayin' in that pokey wee hole on second avenue."
"Guess I could have."
"So why didn't you." Cid wondered and emptied one beer.
"'cause that just ain't the way it works... being a vampire."
"So how does it work, then?" Cid asked.
"I'm a nice guy, and besides... it comes down to responsibility."
Cid started lauging the moment he heard that.
"This oughtta be good..."
"Hey... I might be a vampire."
"Yup... a blood-suckin' vampire!"
"Yeah... that... but that doesn't mean I can threaten you normal human beings... if you got power... you got to use it right."
"Pah... such talk... an' such talk up 'ere too..." Cid said, "I'm freezing me arse off 'ere."
Vincent looked for a moment at Cid who understood completely. It was one of Cid's dreams to fly up to the moon and get a closer look at all the stars. Vincent remembered seeing a very warm fur coat at Cid's place when he'd picked the foul mouthed pilot up for a trip to New York.
"I reckon it might just be a little bit more cold up there, you know!" Vincent laughed.
Cid and Vincent admired the view for a moment. The twin towers looked as they could reach the stars.
"That truly is somethin'."
"Yeah." Cid said, "It looks like... like every goddamn movie I ever seen on the place, you know. Like every movie they every made about here's really happened, somewhere way down in all that smoky streetlight... Standin' up here, view like this... you get the feelin' like you could do anything."
"Yeah... that's the feelin' I had, the night I was up here. The night they opened the building."
"No shit?" Cid wondered suspiciously.
"No shit" Vincent answered, "I was in some place over in Queens drinkin' with a couple've fellas, an' the barman said they were openin' the Empire State to the public. Took us ages to get through all the crowds, but by christ it was fuckin' well worth it."
"How the hell old are you?" Cid asked.
"Same age as the century..." Vincent answered, "Same age as the century... One of the many advantages of being a vampire..."
"What else?" Cid wondered curiously.
"Perfect vision, nose like a bloodhound, takes five seconds to run the hundred... I can drink as much as I like an' walk a straight line, an' kick the shit out of Mike Tyson while I'm doing it."
"I'll be damned." Cid said quietly.
"And I'll show you something else"
Cid spilled the rest of his beer when he saw Vincent climb the railing and getting ready to jump.
"Quicker than taking the lift, Cid, see you at the bottom."
"What the fuck are you doin'? Get down!" Cid screamed.
"OH GOD! I CAN'T STAND IT ANY LONGER! THE BLOOD! THE KILLING! THE POINTLESS BUTCHERY! LET IT END HERE!"
"For fucks sake, Vincent!"
And then he jumped. Cid rushed forward to see the fall. He got rather surprised when he saw that Vincent held himself up the wall only by using the fingers.
"Fooled you" he was singing.
"Bastard!" Cid found himself screaming, "Don't you ever do that again, you fuckin'..."
Vincent laughed when he climbed all the way up to the top to Cid.
"Guess you have feelings too?"
"Hell no... but I was thinkin' 'bout the cleaning squad 'ere in New York... It'd take years to scrape you off from that fuckin' street!"
"I'll take that as a compliment."
"The hell you do."
And the two gentlemen went down the Empire State Building and entered the nearest bar...
Inside "Lucky's Bar"...
"Getting back to the question of your responsibility to your fellow man..."
"Figure we've about covered it." Vincent said.
"Okay then... Let's move on to the question of you meetin' up with the old gang, huh?"
Cid and Vincent were playing billiard in a bar. The bartender was lying unconcious on one of the other billiard tables...
"Yeah... you know... Cloud and bloody everyone else..."
"Oh... well... they disturbed my sleep..."
"Heh... well... guess that's kind of rude... They destroyed my plans on going up to the stars..."
"Uhuh... those fuckers entered my quiet little village, began a conversation with me and all of a fucking sudden there's the bloody Shinra Corporation there and battles! Fuckin' total chaos!"
"Isn't it the Shinra you're supposed to blame, then?"
"Yeah... but I didn't get the chance since the others did that without me! Remember?"
"Didn't you want to do that too?"
"Yeah... but alone! I wanted to stick their heads on my spear and compete in the motherfuckin' Olympics!"
"Okay..." Vincent said and shot the eightball in one of the holes, granting him the victory again.
"Fuck, can you stop doing that?"
Cid reached for a crayon and scrabbled another line for Vincent on the scoreboard.
"Think that's it..."
"You've won three times already."
"Heh... loser... you suck at billiard, Cid."
"Hey, fuck you!"
"'Kay then... About the beers then... what do we owe him for?"
Vincent pointed on the unconcious man lying on the other billiard table.
"Why are you runnin' a tab? I don't see fuckwit over there tryin' to stop us leavin', do you?"
"It just ain't fair." Vincent said, "He's passed out. Now there's your responsibility to your fellow man right there..."
"Correct me if I'm wrong, but weren't you the bloke that hit him?"
"Making me the one responsible for him... I didn't hit the son of a bitch so we could steal his beer. I hit him 'cause he called me a redneck motherfucker. Gotta be a more polite way to ask a fella to drink up at closin' time, ain't there? What do we owe him for?"
"Ten pitchers... uhh... eighty bucks."
Vincent coughed a little and looked embarrassed.
"Ah, I take it that cough means your half goes on the I.O.U. you gave me?"
"I'll uh, I'll get some cash soon as I..."
"Relax" Cid replied.
"Yeah, well don't go around an' mention it to anyone. Got my reputation to think of, you know."
"You have a reputation 'round here?"
"I intend to get one, bloodsucker. You need one 'ere in the big apple."
"The grape..." Vincent insisted.
"Uh, listen. The sun'll nearly be up out. I'll have to stay an' kip under one've the tables. I'll see you at the hotel at ten tonight, okay?"
"Tonight at ten... 'ere's the money."
"Don't forget the tip, eh?"
"Fuck that, bloodsucker!"
So Cid went out from the bar alone, knowing that Vincent probably would drink the unconcious man's blood, take the money and 'pay' his debts...
Seventh july... just outside Dallas...
Cid and Vincent had abandoned New York and had decided to travel a little bit longer into the U.S. This had proved to be a challenging trip indeed... The pair had met Amanda, a woman on the run from the mob and now they were sitting in a diner, just outside a sign that said "You are leaving Dallas".
"Heh... yeah... what the fuck were you doin', Amanda?" Cid wondered.
"I don't think that's got anything to do with you guys."
"We are involved now. Helping you escape..."
"I didn't ask you!"
"Fuck it! Out with it!"
"Shut it, Cid. You don't have to, Amanda. But it would help to clear out some things..." Vincent explained with his calm voice.
Amanda sighed. She appeared to be a little bit more reasonable when Vincent spoke to her.
"Okay... Here goes... As you may know, I work as a hired killer... And... I had timed this job to perfection... and then he shows up, just like they told me he should..."
So I am waiting outside this restaurant and watches him gettin' out. Two gorillas with 'im and he gets a seat in the limo...
"Oh shit... that's him... that's really him..."
So I begin walking towards the limousine. Gun's in the bag. So far everything's good. And when I reach them, they suddenly open their mouth and starts talkin' to me.
"Pardon me, ma'am..."
"You reckon you could hold your breath for three minutes? 'Cause if you could I'd like to marry you."
And when he and his buddies start laughing... it all flips out. I open the bag, get the gun and fires it through the fucking limo! The bullet hit one of the gorillas right in the mouth and it all explodes with blood! Only thing left is a little bit of his tongue and some teeth!
Nice, Vincent interupted and made an annoying sound with his mouth.
So you made a run for it? Cid wondered.
Well, what the hell should I have done?
Dunno... stay and shoot, maybe? You had the time to kill the whole lot.
Well, I fucking didn't! Okay?
Keep it low, god damn it... you made a run for it, I take it this is where we appear?
Right, Vincent... Amanda said.
Okay then, there we was... minding our own business... Vincent started.
You mean singin' old country blues fucking shit? Cid wondered.
Hey... you better watch what you're saying... Anyway... we were driving through Dallas...
Intending to LEAVE Dallas actually... Cid said.
Good... anyways... we were LEAVING Dallas in our pickup truck...
I stole it so I guess we can't call it ours... Cid interupted.
... gonna kill you, Cid... I hope you realize that... We were leaving Dallas in our stolen pickup truck... That better?
Good. So there we was driving and then you get right in front of the truck and waves that darn gun in our faces. Cid's in the driver's seat by the way...
"Gimme the truck!"
Ah yeah... I remember that... That was kind of sexy... Cid said and smiled at Amanda.
Oh yeah... Armed women... that thing fuckin' turns me on...
You sick fuck... Amanda said.
"Get the fuck outta the truck!"
An' then the mobsters comes running, spots me and begin to aim for me!
... an' you flip out totally. Remember that too... Cid said.
Great... Vincent said.
'Kay, the mobsters scream something like "fuckin' whore" and starts shooting.
"Aw Jesus...! I gotta get outta here!"
Ah yeah... Cid said. An' I start laughin' and says somethin' like this...
"Aye. What the fuck. Get in."
And I get in and then the mobsters start running after me, shooting.
Aye, an' one of those bullets hit Vincent in the head... Fuckin' great.
I got hit? Ah what the hell... It's gone now right?
Yeah. Okay, where were we now? Right, you in the truck, the mafia's shootin' at us, Vince get hit in the head...
"I REALLY appreciate this..."
"Don't mention it. You've brightened up an otherwise boring evening, luv."
"Heh... I remember that. You were trying to make your name sound intriguing, eh?"
"Fuck you, bloodsucker. Nothin' wrong with that, is there?"
"Other than that you're a fucking creep?" Amanda wondered and smiled sarcasticly.
"Hey! You, you can't blame a guy for tryin'!"
"What can you blame a guy for then?"
"I think I'm going to stay out of this conversation." Vincent said.
And that was a wise decision...
Eight july, on the road...
"On the road again... dum-de-dum... on the road again... dum-de..."
"Shut the fuck up for fucks sake!"
"You won't even let me sing a nice song..." Vincent complained.
"That fuckin' road thing part was the only part in the fuckin' song you knew. It's a fuckin' chorus!"
"Well... Do you know the rest of it then?"
"No! And keep your eyes on the road."
Vincent sighed again. Amanda was a lot more pleasant to talk with, he guessed that it must be because of her being a woman and Cid being a foulmouthed idiot... Women were more intellectual than idiots and therefore better at talking. He sighed once more. He wished that Amanda would wake up so that they could drive Cid nuts by discussing literature or art or whatever that Cid didn't even know how to pronounce.
"What's all the fuckin' sighs for?"
"Uh huh... So I guess it doesn't have anythin' to do with our little princess hired killer sleepin' in the backseat, uh?"
Vincent didn't answer.
"Well... Go get her then!"
"Oh, come on. Little vampire boy is in love..."
"That's the word."
"Love is for the living, Cid. It is not... suitable for vampires to get involved with human behaviour."
"Pah... Sometimes you're just too..."
Suddenly there was a big bang coming from the behind and seconds after that Cid noticed how Vincent's neck had started bleeding. There was a bullet in there...
Vincent remained calm even though he had a bullet in the neck, causing him massive blood loss. One of those benefits of being a vampire Cid guessed.
"The hell is going on here?" Amanda suddenly asked, screaming.
"Why... Good mornin' to you!"
"Fuck you, Cid! What's happening?"
"It's your friends, Amanda!" Vincent said and tried to max up the accelerator on the truck.
"The mobsters... The people you were trying to kill!" Vincent said.
"Why the hell didn't you kill them off when you had the chance?"
"Fuck yourself to hell!"
"Don't have a cock that large, luv! But thanks for the compliment!" Cid answered.
"Okay! Okay! Fuck off everyone! Cid! Get that damn gun!"
Vincent were so furious that Cid didn't even answer anything. He just got the gun they had hidden in the glove compartment and opened a window and pointed the gun towards the mobsters car.
"Like a fuckin' movie!" he screamed and pulled the trigger.
"Fucking aim, damn it!"
"Hey, lady! Shut the hell up and let me and Vince save yer precious little ass!"
"Shut the hell up both of you! Try and hold them off for a second, Cid. I'm going to try and shake 'em off!"
"If you are pretendin' to be James Bond... you are succedin' fuckin' greatly."
Vincent ignored that and begun to drive faster and faster.
"You tryin' to get us killed?"
"I know what I'm doing!"
"Especially since yer a vampire who won't die so easily..." Cid said and pulled the trigger on the gun again.
This time the bullet hit its target: the wheels of the mobsters car, it started to drive a little bit uneasy on the road but they wouldn't give in just because of that.
"Three more to go..."
"If I was fuckin' blind I would've fuckin' told you!" Cid screamed and ducked for a bullet, "Fuck! That one almost got me!"
Cid leaned out the window again and pulled the trigger again. A miss.
"Vincent! If you're goin' to try and shake 'em off, now's the chance!"
"Every chance is a fucking good chance, damn it! Shake 'em off!" Cid screamed.
"Point taken. Give me the gun."
"GIVE ME THE GUN!"
Cid handed Vincent the gun.
"Take the wheel, Cid and drive like hell!"
"What are you goin' to do?"
"Goin' to shake these bastards off." Vincent said.
And with that Vincent threw himself out the truck and landed on the road.
"He's mad." Amanda screamed.
"He's a vampire, luv."
The mobsters car stopped to see what the hell had just happened. People that were throwing out from cars at max speed without taking a scratch wasn't real. The mobsters found it very intriguing... Vincent quickly got on his feet and found himself surrounded by the mobsters. Vincent quickly worked out names for all three of them: Cutthroat one, two and three.
"Weren't we supposed to kill that whore?"
"This guy is somehow related to her."
"Huh? You her boyfriend?"
"Well, what the fuck are you?"
"They stopped following us."
"Well? Drive back then."
"Eh... I reckon Vince wants to be alone with 'em for a minute.
Cid looked at Amanda.
"Yer cute when yer angry."
"Suit yourself. Hope you have a barfbag?"
"You're gonna need one..."
Back on the road, Vincent were busy setting his teeth into the mobsters necks. He shot two of them in the legs first so they wouldn't escape when they saw what he was. And they screamed like hell when he begun drinking. Well, for a second or two at least. Then they died. But the blood was still fresh. Vincent finished Cutthroat one and threw him on the car.
"Nonononono... Please..." Cutthroat two begged.
Vincent smiled at the man. Cutthroat three seemed to be totally mute.
"Why are you after that woman?"
"She... she tried to kill our... our... our boss...
"No other particular reason?"
"Good... get out of here."
"Get out of here I said. You gave me information, which on the other hand didn't lead anywhere but hey... it was a nice gesture of you to do."
"What about Mikey?"
"You gonna eat him too?"
Cutthroat three, Mikey, just looked at Vincent with terror stricken eyes.
"If he won't talk to me... I'll eat 'im."
"... please..." Mikey whispered.
"Oh. So you can talk?"
"I talk... Please..."
Mikey went silent.
"Guess I picked the wrong words... what info?"
"He doesn't know anything!" Cutthroat two screamed.
Vincent walked over to the man and picked him up, holding him upside down.
"Do you enjoy living?"
"Then shut the hell up when I'm talking to someone other than you!"
"Good." Vincent said and threw him back on the ground, "Now Mikey... what do you know?"
Mikey didn't answer.
"Tell me Mikey... Do you have a family?"
"... wife... t..two daughters."
"Do you want to see them again?"
"Then tell me what you know. I won't hurt you if you tell me."
"The girl... she's working for an organisation known as 'elite'..."
"Wha... what kind of organisation?"
"Bounty... bounty hunting..."
"No police. They want to stop that organisation as much as the.. others do.."
"Great. Illegal bounty hunting... How do they make profit?"
"They pick up whatever's left of the jobs..."
"... and sell it on the black market... vehicles... weapons... drugs..."
"But this little thing the three of you did now... that was just a personal vendetta?"
"She tried to kill our boss."
"But she didn't."
"She... she tried. That's enough to start a war."
"Guess that's kind of fair."
"Can I... Can I go now...?"
"Get going and tell your boss that you personally executed everyone. All by yourself..."
Vincent got the gun and shot Cutthroat two in the head.
"You're up for some rewards, kiddo. Get going."
Vincent threw away the gun as he saw Mikey limp away as fast he could. Searching number two, he found some cigarettes and matches.
"These would've taken care of you anyway, asshole." he said.
On the road...
When Cid and Amanda arrived to the part of the road where Vincent were at they were met by the fact that the road had shifted colors. Red in fact. Very similar to blood indeed. It was of course blood... Cid knew that. He had been hanging out with Vincent long enough to know things like these. Amanda, on the other hand, was new to the scene and didn't exactly have the same experience like Cid had when to look at a blood splattered road...
"The work of a hungry vampire, luv." Cid said.
"Jesus!" Amanda repeated.
"Wha..?" Vincent wondered.
There were fresh blood dripping from his teeth and actually there were blood everywhere and there were also some parts that at least looked as a brain directly lying on the road in a pool of blood. Vincent walked right through it. You could hear the disturbing splashing sound...
"Think I got a barfbag in the truck, luv... Puke yerself together... heh..."
"Oh my god, oh my god..."
"What the hell's up with her?" Vincent asked when Amanda left for the truck.
"Guess she can't stand your bloody, heh, vampire behaviour... If you, heh, know what I mean...?" Cid replied.
"Pah..." Vincent said and spat out some of the blood to put in a cigarette, "That's why humans and vampires don't mix."
"Don't play with yer bloody food, uh? Gimme a cigarette while you're at it."
"Only one match left..." Vincent said and used it.
"Wha...? What about those on the ground?"
"On the ground?"
"Aye, the fuckin' matches you threw out from the box!"
"Useless. Destroyed by all that bastards blood. The box wasn't really waterproof." Vincent said and blew out some smoke.
"Or bloodproof for that matter. Fuck!"
"But you should be lucky. Cigarettes kill you, you know."
"I'll be the judge of that..."
"Yeah... Suppose so."
Vincent and Cid could hear Amanda puking somewhere... At certain moments Vincent would have felt sorry for her to witness this kind of scene, but at the moment he didn't care. He had to sleep a little now when he finally gotten some food and since the sun wouldn't go up until at least... say two hours, he intended to be a bit grumpy towards everyone. And besides, he really knew he'd screwed up his chances with that girl... If he was to think of it in a sarcastic kind of way he would have thought "wonder why". But that would only happen if the citizens of Hell would freeze to death.
"Guess you've fuckin' screwed up yer bloody chances with her, aye?"
"Don't care. And besides... she's in one hell of a scene right now."
"Directly taken from a movie way I see it. She won't have the mob after her now, but there are others who wants to get their hands on her."
"Oh... I fuckin' know..." Cid said and drifted away in a perverse daydream.
"The 'others' don't want to get their hands on her ass like you, Cid! I was talking about totally different things."
"Heh... Well, that is why I'm cool and the rest of the human world are filled with idiots."
"I reckon it's the other way around..."
"Well, anyway... She's part of some, or well... she WAS part of some bounty hunting organisation. Somethin' called the 'elite'..."
"How original. What about that?"
Cid started laughing.
"That's my girl!"
"... since when did she become your girl?"
"Well... since you bloody missed out on the opportunity I'd figure I have a chance, eh?"
"Yeah. Same chance you got winning one of those dictionaries on, what's the company? Ah, whatever... It's the same chance."
"I never do competitions, and you fuckin' know that!"
"Way I see it, you could've done one without me knowin'? And it's pretty unfair to talk about Amanda when she isn't here."
"Mr Boyscout Vampire, eh?"
"Shut up, Cid."
"You know. If you still got any feelings for our... heh... christ, bounty hunting princess... you should go get her before she's fuckin' gone with the wind."
"Gone with the wind?"
"Fuckin' movie. Women apparently like it. Very romantic and all that."
"Yup. But men hates it and mumbles the entire movie how they want to dump the male actors into the ocean."
"Way I see it... that movie's a lot more fuckin' violent than all the other shit they're accusin'!"
"Right... So... what should we do about it?"
"What? Movies or the fact that your soon-to-be, you should hope, girlfriend is a illegal bounty hunter with the police, the mob..."
"No mob. I took care of that."
"Oh yeah..." Cid said and looked around.
"Should we confront her about it?"
"Yeah, you should confront her 'bout it since you need to lay in a couple of moves on 'er!"
Vincent looked at Cid with a very angry look.
"I'm not going to..."
"Right." Cid interupted.
"I know you don't believe me, but I'm not interested in... sleeping with her!"
Cid started laughing.
"I didn't say ye should sleep with her."
"But you meant it that way."
"'Course I did. I'm a perfectly normal heterosexual male human being. It would be wrong to discourage propagation. It's the human way."
"Yeah? Well the vampire way is a lot more different!"
"But you still got the urge to fuck, eh?"
"Hey! Let's leave it there, shall we?"
"Thank you. Now what about Amanda?"
"Can't leave 'er can we? We'll take 'er with us."
"That a good thing?"
"Well, if she got the fuckin'... uhh... 'elite' organisation after her, then she's practically perforated already! I mean... organisations calling themselves the motherfuckin' 'elite' is not to be fuckin' messed 'round with."
"So we better bring 'er along, jus' to make sure she's fuckin' safe, aye?"
"Yeah... guess so. Think we should get rid of that organisation too?"
"Well, since yer the immortal among us you'd better do that alone if you figure that's a good thing to do."
Vincent blew out some smoke.
"Yeah..." he said.
Just outside a big building
It was just an ordinary building. It didn't have any windows, but buildings don't need windows to be ordinary. There was no door visible, but buildings don't need doors to be ordinary. Entrances makes you vulnerable, someone had taught Vincent. Vincent guessed that was true. An entrance would surely make it a hell lot more easier to kill the organisation known as elite.
"Not a door in sight."
"Do you two think I'm fuckin' blind or somethin'?" Cid wondered.
"No. It was a statement from me to myself." Vincent explained.
"Pah..." Cid answered, "Sure could use a cigarette."
"See? That's your problem..." Amanda said, "You always wants to do something alone when others are trying to discuss things!"
"Discuss? Whoope-shitty-whoo! A discussion about this doorless fuckin' building! What the fuckin' hell's that for a discussion!?"
"A discussion." Vincent said, "And please don't fight."
"We're not fighting, god damn it! God damn you, for that bloody matter!"
"Amanda. How did you get into this building?" Vincent asked, ignoring Cid.
"We just got in. Somehow."
"Great... just bloody fuckin' great..."
"Then we have two options left..." Vincent said.
"Did we have other options?" Cid wondered.
"Yeah, find the bloody door." Vincent answered, "There have to be a teleport or something here..."
"That's the first option we got? Searching for a teleport?" Amanda wondered.
"Or just blowing up the building."
"Good. Blow up the bloody thing and we can drive away as fast as fuckin' possible."
Suddenly, a loud noise came from the building.
"That your stomach?" Cid asked Vincent.
The trio turned to the building and looked how it somehow opened up.
A man walked out. He was carrying a submachine gun.
"Oh... hello?" Vincent started.
The man aimed the submachine gun at Vincent.
"Strong, silent and heavily equipped... Aye, the chicks must love ya, eh?" Cid said.
The man pulled the trigger and bursted out an entire clip of bullets on Vincent who collapsed.
"That was a warning to all of you." the armed man said and began walking into the building again, "And don't hang around here anymore!"
Vincent got up on his legs, jumped on the man and twisted his neck backwards, breaking it. It all happened so fast. The man lived just for a second when the vampire twisted his neck. But just for a second. After that, it all just passed out for him and he was the one to collapse.
"Amateur." Vincent said.
"You hurt?" Cid wondered.
"Nah... just pissed off, that's it. Why the hell didn't he shoot you?"
"Guess I said the fuckin' truth to 'im?" Cid answered.
"Yeah, you guess. Are we going in?" Amanda asked.
"Yeah. We're going." Vincent said and picked up the submachine gun from the dead mans hand.
"Lead the way, mr bloodsucker."
"Well then, mr swears-all-the-time, follow me."
"Shut up, guys."
"Yeah." Amanda answered, "Why?"
"Oh, Vince jus' wanna know 'cause he wasn't fuckin' sure if it was the right building of a evil bounty
"Go to hell, Cid..." Vincent said and then turned to Amanda, "You should know your way around right?"
"What are we looking for?"
"Bruce Springsteen?" Amanda joked.
"No. Your former superiors."
"Oh... That's an tricky one. Where would you place your office if you were the superiors of an illegal bounty hunting organisation?" Amanda asked.
"Top floor?" Vincent replied.
"That's what everyone thinks. It's always the top floor. It's so cliché..."
"The basement then?"
"Correct. There's noone suspecting the basement to be the office of the superiors."
"Okay... So that is where they're hiding?" Vincent wondered.
The trio went down several stairs and elevators. Always down, the building seemed to be a endless hole to hell.
"... Why did they only send one motherfuckin' guard? And why the hell didn't they send any damn reinforcements? And why the hell don't I hear a fucking alarm screamin'?"
Vincent stopped walking. He turned around and looked anxiously at Cid.
"Shit." he said.
"Oh yeah!" Cid screamed, "We've been walking into one hell of a trap."
"Not yet, I think..."
"Yeah? Well, as soon as we reach the people in charge, we're fuckin' sliced, diced and ordered by some fuckin' kid at McDonalds who asks if he can get a motherfuckin' chicken mcnugget!"
"Not me I reckon."
"Shut the fuck up you fuckin' immortal freak!"
"What!?" Cid screamed.
"Don't yell at her."
"Oh, I'm so fuckin' sorry for yelling at a stupid gal who most obviously got something to do with us gettin' into this trap!"
"What do you..."
"I mean that she lead us into this bloody trap! She's workin' for 'em!"
"Yeah?" Cid screamed.
"Calm down, Cid. Amanda is not our enemy, she is not going to hurt us. We are helping her."
Suddenly, Cid was pointing the dead guards submachine gun at Amanda.
"Tell mister vampire you're workin' for people who want to see me an' Vince dead."
"I don't know what your..."
"Don't lie to me, princess!"
"Put down the gun, Cid! Or else I'll fucking kill you."
Cid laughed at Vincent's words.
"She's playin' with you, Vince. She wants to see you dead."
"That's not true!"
"Oh yeah? Show Vince yer little tattoo yer neck!"
"I don't know wha..."
Cid pushed the gun towards Amanda's head.
"Show 'im your faboulous fuckin' Shinra tattoo or else I'll blow yer brains out and show 'im later! You understand?"
Amanda had started crying, Vincent didn't knew what to do and Cid were at the moment out of his mind.
"Okay..." she said and turned around, revealing a tattoo under the black hair.
"Yeah. It's their logo allright."
"I can explain..." Amanda said, crying, "I didn't mean to..."
A voice echoed from nowhere. It laughed.
"Who's there?" Vincent screamed.
"We got yer female agent here! We know about the trap!"
"Most impressing." the voice said, "But it was a bit late. You won't get out of here now."
"Fuck you, asshole! Me an' Vince are gettin' out of 'ere, an' we're goin' to kill you on our way."
"Sounds intriguing, Cid. Most intriguing. Take the elevator to my office and we'll talk. And remove that gun from Amanda. My snipers have you in their sights and will kill you rather easily. All I have to do is to say 'kill him' so put the gun away."
"Your call." the voice said.
"Put the gun down, Cid." Vincent said with his calm voice, "I'm sure there is nothing..."
"FUCK!" Cid screamed and threw the gun away.
Amanda took a deep breath and closed her eyes just to open them again some seconds later.
"Good, Cid. Good. Now take the elevator over there." the voice said.
"Where?" Vincent wondered.
A spotlight appeared and started to move on the floor, it stopped in a corner and a big door appeared. It didn't look like a elevator. More like the door to a outhouse really.
"I'm waiting." the voice said.
"Fuck you, asshole." Cid said and walked towards the door.
Vincent sighed and followed the foulmouthed bastard. He stopped for a while and turned around to Amanda.
"Cid?" he whispered.
"How did you know she had a, uh, Shinra tattoo?"
"Checked 'er out when you left us for that snack." he said, "Hell, she might be our enemy..."
"You don't know that."
"Why would she have a tattoo with Shinra then?"
"She doesn't have to be in Shinra now. Tattoos are permanent you know..."
"Yeah... Well, mr asshole will explain everything I hope. Otherwise I trust you will help me blow this bloody facility to whatever shithole the..."
Cid stopped and knocked on the wall.
"... cement came from."
"What about Amanda?"
"Think she'll be okay. She's into this organisation even though she stated clearly she wasn't."
"Okay..." Vincent said and opened the elevator door.
It was rather dark in there but Cid and Vincent could feel that the elevator was moving.
"Great. Another bloody function for the remote control. Controlling elevators. Stop there, move there, cut rope there. Can swear he's gonna videotape the shit if he ever gets the idea of creatin' us to fuckin' ketchup."
"You're so negative. Have a little faith in that guy."
"...... the hells up with you?"
"It's been, like, five minutes and you're already asking me to 'have some faith in that guy'?"
"Guess I picked the wrong words... heh... again..."
"... fucking right you did. And excuse me for not seeing anything positive being stuck in this god damn elevator! I hope it's an elevator at least..."
"Guess you're right."
"And, hey, how the hell did he know our names?"
"... Amanda might've..."
"What? These guys been after us all the time? Our trip through this god damn country's been a trap?"
"I reckon they call it a 'setup' these days."
"Setup... Ain't that for computers... Software and stuff?"
Vincent didn't answer.
"Well..." Cid said, "That bastard better explain everythin' to us when we meet with 'im."
"... is he a asshole or a bastard?"
"Doesn't bloody matter does it?" Cid said, "Same shit... Same shit every fuckin' day."
"Agree." Vincent answered.
Suddenly the elevator stopped and the doors opened.
"Fuck." Cid said, "Okay, here goes."
The first thing Cid and Vincent did when they walked into the office was to take a big look around. The office was, in short, fucking large. It was as large as a warehouse. Cid muttered that it must be kind of lonely to sit here all day and do the usual boss stuff.
"Can you imagine yourself doin' bloody paperwork in this room?" Cid wispered to Vincent as they walked forward towards a small desk were someone was sitting.
"No. I can imagine a drug related party though... But not paperworks."
The man sitting by the desk suddenly spoke...
"The room was formerly known as a disco. That was years ago though."
"A disco? Did they have a fuckin' disco in this fuckin' building?"
The man laughed and Vincent noted that he was sitting in a rather dark area of the room, and that they were standing in the light area. Very clever if that bastard ever wanted to blow them to pieces... They couldn't see him at all, he could see them. Very clever.
"No. During the war the whole room got buried in sand..."
"The art of nuclear power." Vincent said.
"Horrible." Cid said.
"Beautiful." Vincent said and smiled.
"Anyways..." The man said, "When the Elite settled here and built the headquarters we were unaware of this room. So basicly we just put in the elevator and some things necessary to live here. Air... That sort of thing."
"Yeah yeah... fuck it!" Cid said, "Me an' Vince wants some god damn answers!"
The man laughed again. Cid started to get furious... Vincent started to get bored.
"Very well. For starters, we don't mean you any harm."
"We don't know if we want YOU any harm yet." Cid said.
"What do you want with us?"
"We want to hire you."
"Yes." the man said, "You've probably heard of Elite. That we are illegal bounty hunters and all that..."
"Yeah..." Cid said.
"That is untrue. The Elite is a top secret counter terrorist organisation formed by several countries."
"Mercenaries." Vincent said.
"Counter terrorists." the man insisted.
"What-the fuck-ever." Cid said, "What do you want with us?"
"Like I told you befo..."
Vincent laughed at the figure.
"You're not hiring us at all until we know your face and your motives."
"Fair enough." the man answered, "My portrait is hanging on the wall over there. It's a bit old, but..."
Vincent smiled so the figure could have a look at his teeth.
"Impressive." the man said.
The man finished that sentence. But no more sentences where to be spoken until Vincent were happy.
Cid looked at Vincent who jumped towards the figure, took a good grip around his neck and threw the man into the light area of the room. Cid took a good look at the face when the man landed. The face was rather unpleasant...
"Yeah..." the man said, "I got no face."
"How the fuck did you do that to your face?"
The skin had been taken off with a very sharp object. Possibly a scalpell. Only tissue remained around the eyes and the mouth. The nose existed but was nowhere to be seen due to the lack of skin. Dried blood...
"I... heh... didn't do this to myself."
"Good. I was gettin' worried."
"Who did that?" Vincent wondered.
"The people I want you two to hunt down. A crime family known as the Gnucci's."
"Italians. Why in the fuck are they always italian?" Cid wispered to himself.
"The people Amanda was trying to kill?"
The man looked at Vincent.
"You're clever. Yes. Since, Amanda.. failed... in her mission. I want to hire you two."
"I don't fuckin' know..." Cid said.
"How much?" Vincent interupted.
"How much can you settle for?"
"200.000 dollars plus expenses and equipment."
"Deal. Amanda will give you your money and any equipment you may wish. She will also accompany you in your mission."
"Now hold on a fucking second! Vince... Are you serious? Do you want to become a bloody mercenary?"
"Counter terrorist!" the man said in an angry tone.
"What-the fuck-ever! Vince, are you serious?"
"Yes. As serious as a vampire can be." he said and smiled.
"What's that supposed to mean?"
Vincent didn't listen.
"What kind of equipment can be provided?" he asked.
"With the resources we have, we can surely get you the moon if you wished it."
"Really?" Cid asked with a dreaming look on his face.
"No." the man said.