I REALLY DON’T LOVE YOU ANYMORE
Those were the last six words he ever heard her speak. Anjers suspected, looking back, it was a spinning-tumbler, drum-roll, broken-lock combination of ever darkening events that had led them to that place. Her husband,for example. The sight of his body – dislocated, twisted. Limbs elevated where they shouldn’t be, encapsulated the moment. His torso was mangled in a way that suggested Bosch had been playing with it for a day. A day in which he had not quite decided which conflagration was the most dramatic.
It wasn’t as if you’d expect anything different really. One tiny needle in the side of her husband’s neck was all it had taken. The rest was a slow experiment into forbidden geometries. Was it possible for arms to articulate themselves differently? How much blood could you soak up with with a couple of monogrammed handkerchiefs? The answer unfortunately was very little. Doing so however was to invite the lurking forensic armies of pathologists and body ignitors to rub their hands with glee. Of course, plummeting down the side of the shimmering Tokyo Transmedia Tower had automatically removed all DNA evidence. It was going to take an infinite quantity of far simpler technology to remove her feelings however.
Anjers paused to watch silhouetted shapes cross the span of a bridge fourteen floors below. In the vibrant hues of twilight sky, dusk began its own Mikado performances. He wiped his eyes. No matter which methods he employed he hated the noise that filled his head now. Flashbacks danced along the edge of memory, every step became an eternity of pain. Gazing towards the moon’s dark side he waited for the moment when it would eat all the radio-net chatter, wipe his mind clean of all that had happened, that he might awake and believe it all to have been a dream.
Only she was still there. Standing beside him, almost too casually. In a deliberate pretense of slow motion, she pulled the zipper up the side-length of her reflective thigh-suit.
“I meant it Anjers”, she said, pulling the blood-chip necklace from around her neck and throwing it towards him.
“Take it! See how many will come to take it from you”
“You don’t like my gifts anymore?” he ventured. She didn’t answer, but he could tell that she was already thinking of the pyramid of Alumini her husband was worth dead, already in her mind debating which shade of black would look the most effective when the funeral appeared on all the newscasts.
“I really don’t love you anymore”. There they were. Those six small words that changed everything. In that moment Anjers pictured himself dragging her to the window, pushing her face into its filigreed enchantments before pushing her through the plasglass and deep into the open air. But he couldn’t. Even with the radio-net noise silenced there would be far too many unanswered questions, too many permanently shortened possibilities. He suspected that he would never stop loving her, no matter what she did. He however, had to ensure that the body of her husband wouldn’t be re-lit, exhumed from the darks of death by anyone to describe Anjers. Besides he knew she would never speak to him again. Not after tonight.
So, in her place, he threw himself at the glass. As his shoulder came into contact the window hesitated a moment before shattering. And then he was gone, leaving the Tokyo Transmedia Tower to stare silently at the ancient, mini Tokyo Tower across the street of emerald neon windows.
He re-materialised several feet from the final gestures of the man twitching on the pavement, his cubist death patterns already fatally upon him, the pool of blood seeping from a shattered skull. Anjers used his heel to stamp the last life from him, spilling passion-gate-bots across his nerves, reaching in, closing all the pathways that his traumatised spirit might already be trying to open. In a minute it would be over. In a minute soul and body would be eternally conjoined, unable to identify their assailant.
The nano technology*did its job before the minute was up, settling to drain the last energy reserves from her husband’s skin. Anjers walked out the shadowed side-street. Across the road a procession of elderly men, wrapped in jackets of blue and white calligraphy, carried a shrine in a crazy hokey-kokey to their retirement home. Already the gods were appeased, Anjers was saved one more night of bowing before the shrine of Minamoto Yoshitsune.
He gazed up towards the distant penthouse suite. I really don’t love you anymore either he repeated to himself, again and again, trying to banish the image of her naked body. The six little passion-gate-bots found their way back to the heels of his boots, each one becoming a word as he repeated the mantra a final time, their sub-quantum matrixes fully charged. He slowly turned and headed for the first Sake bar of many that evening.
*Nano technology developed from a conversation with Mark H.
This excerpt grew out of the brief to choose six words and then elaborate them into a story. As always, its easier to write something that can be integrated into the WIP of my main bodies of work. In this case, that is the SF novel, Death Codex.