My breath came hard and heavy. “Cardio” I muttered “waaaay more cardio”
My assailant sneered. “You think that now? If you started 30 yrs ago you could have been Batman, but no, you chose an easier path, indulgent, hedonistic, lazy…”
My grip on her wrist loosened as she twisted back attempting to pull me offside.
“Weak” she said.
I managed to keep my balance just barely, finding my center. In through the nose, out through mouth. Controlled breath is the sign of a controlled mind and mine raced as I studied my predicament. My assets were little and less, my choices rock or hard place? Her eyes narrowed, she was barely ruffled and looking at me like I was the threat. Good, let her give me credit for a cunning brain… cause shit if I knew how this was going to end. I tracked her here, followed the breadcrumbs, every intention of confrontation, and not a damned clue as to how to make her stop.
“So, come here often?” Yep, witty old me, but talking I could do, even if it slightly betrayed my lack of air.
She tilted her head, unsure of my game. “This conversation is a waste of both my time and your life, what little of it you have made so far”
A dart and I barely deflected her attack. Her blades flashed, sharp and quick as her movements, precise, purposeful. I felt like molasses, adrenaline barely making up the difference anymore. My hammer is a handy tool, and though grateful for its effectiveness at the moment as the worlds tiniest shield it was simply not going to be advantageous over time. I tried for her open hip as she passed taking a swing that left me cringing at my own ineptness, but I couldn’t let her own the space in between us. She had to fear that I could do her some damage, keep her from her plans.
“You have no power left, no way to stop me and you persist. You’ve become more annoying than amusing.” She flipper her dagger in that annoying way people obsessed with knives and daggers do. “You have 2 options. Cease this pursuit or forfeit what is left of your life.”
I shrugged “It’s not really an option to let you continue so I’ll go with option 2, but maybe I don’t know, live or something.. that sounds better to me” I gave my best crooked tooth smile “I’m kind of attached to this living thing if it’s all the same to you”
“It’s not” she said as she came at me again low and for all my life telegraphing a feint so obvious I felt vaguely insulted. As she came by I swung down catching her arm and deflecting the blade from creating a new hole in my intestines. The arc that would have made a coin purse of my stomach instead drew the faintest line across my inner forearm, delicate almost.
3 steps on the other side she spun back to face me, tipped her hat (why do the bad guys always wear the coolest hats?) and … ran? Wait, is that supposed to happen? I looked at the small beads of blood from the shallow scratch and then back up to where she had been. Look, I was out of breath, see? So it took a moment to process. I glanced back down and noticed how the little beads kinda looked blurry, and my hand, hammer still in it, felt heavy, kinda tingly. Well really my whole body was a little tingly, and getting kinda warm too. When did I eat last? Was it just on my way here? No.. the day before, when I left the road crew I was with. John, yeah… he was funny… what was the song he was singing? Something about Ruthanne? … Susanne? Oh Susanna! Don’t you cry for me… Susanna?… I’m getting sleepy so… sleepy. Mmmm I hope Susanna knows how to make muffins.
Well sure. Let’s see how coherent you are when you are drugged! So let’s just say I was out for the count. I suppose now is a good time to let you know why I was there, in that particular alley facing down that particular… bitch. She poisoned me! I’m allowed to jump to conclusions surrounding her character. She also left me there in the alley alive, as you are aware. So I might take that into consideration as well.