The rain wasn't so much falling as hanging in the air and the street was greasy, smears of dirt tracked along worn cobblestones by shuffling feet. A preacher, draped in rags and righteousness, spat fear into the damp, clinging atmosphere.
"Repent, sinner, for the end is nigh! You never know when your time will come!"
Evan Myers stopped in front of him and lit a cigarette—illegal to sell and illegal to buy, but possession was not a crime. Yet. Technically it was against the law to smoke in public but since the world was pretty much going to shit anyway, no-one bothered to enforce that particular law very often.
A tilt of the head. A smirk. "The doctor gave me six months but I'm thinking of taking matters into my own hands."
A stunned silence.
An exhale. "Don't worry, I'm fucking with you. But thanks for the cheerful thoughts. Consider my day happier because of you." Then, under his breath, "Asshole."
Evan got a kick out of messing with the preachers. It was one of his favourite sports but it was getting too easy these days. There were so many preachers, so many opportunities. He rounded the corner and almost collided with another, handing out pieces of paper covered in warnings. This one was young, nervous, and his voice shook when he spoke.
"Son," he said, even though he looked of an age with Evan, "I have something for you."
Moving a little closer, taking his time, Evan revelled in the discomfort he was causing. Invading people's personal space was another of his favourite sports. He arched an eyebrow suggestively. "What is it, Father. What do you have for me? You got secrets there? You going to tell me something I never heard before?"
"S-s-son," stammered the preacher, "I have..."
Evan reached towards him, a slow and inviting handshake, then slid his fingers around the man's wrist, pressing into the bones there just enough to hurt. His smirk spread into a smile, taunting. "Good luck thinking of something I never heard before."
Then he snapped the paper away and crushed it slowly in his fist, a subtly violent gesture. Flicking it at the preacher's chest, he sauntered away, taking a drag from his cigarette, ignoring the glares and pointed throat-clearing from the people around him. Fucking drones. Zombies, the lot of them. And fucking preachers. Fuck them and their warnings.
Pushing his way through the door of the coffee house, Evan left the grimy street behind and slid through the crowd to the counter. He ordered a strong black coffee, inflicting a slightly prolonged moment of eye contact on the nervous young barista, and listened to the conversation going on behind him.
"Seriously, you need to come out tonight. Spend some money. Get fucked up. Get fucked."
"Fuck you, Richie. That's all you think about. It must be nice to have someone bankrolling your life for you."
"Course it is. Don't knock it. This isn't going to last forever. And what do you mean 'it must be nice'? It's not like you've worked more than a few hours a week since you finished your degree. How many years ago was that?"
"At least I work. At least I do something. Fucking trust fund baby."
"Oh god, this again. Look, are you going to be there or what?"
"Fine, OK. Where?"
"Revolver first. Then wherever".
Assholes, thought Evan. Fucking assholes who get everything bought and paid for without having to lift a fucking finger. He wasn't stupid though. He recognised the combination of affluence and decadence that paid his rent.
It was a fucked up world. Fucked up and getting more fucked up by the day. The funny thing was, he was well aware the preachers were onto something with their warnings. Not that anyone really believed them. Not that he really cared.
YOU ARE READING
Car ThievesScience Fiction
In the world of the immune, survival is taken, not given. The year 2027. Edinburgh, Scotland. Disease has swept a deadly path through society. A nightlife mogul with a violent past, a sadistic drug dealer, an artist craving companionship, a privileg...