Story: Cut Me Up

Posted: November 25, 2011 in Uncategorized

A dark and miserable dusk crept over the city’s suburbs like a shroud. The full flow of the evening rush-hour was easing off, rivers of light flooding from the city, reflecting on the wet tarmac. For cyclists and pedestrians outside of the car’s warm embrace, the dull roar was painful after a few minutes, echoing in the bones and chambers of the inner ear.

Black was soaking wet, despite the snug-fitting lycra. The stench of exhaust-fumes burned the inside of his nose. The sodium-orange glow shone on the grey clouds above, whenever he glanced upwards in search of respite from the hiss of passing cars. The bike wheels zipped through kerbside puddles, throwing up spray onto his exposed shins. His feet were soaked through. He was in a hurry to get home, whizzing along at twenty miles per hour, nearly as fast as the traffic, which was thankfully thinning out.

The cycle lane ended just ahead as the road narrowed. Black glanced backwards. There was a gap in the traffic, headlights a rainy blur some distance away, so he eased out into the road. He was making good time, and pushed hard on the pedals, slipping the gears downwards to gain speed.

A guttural roar echoed behind him. His heart sank. Boy racers. He snatched a rearwards glance and saw the dirty white car roaring towards him, ignoring the speed limit. He looked ahead. The road curved in the distance but did not widen as it weaved through the outer limits of suburbia. His only options were to pull over or to continue. The driver revved the engine behind him. Well, fuck them, thought Black. If they weren’t such twats, I would pull over.  He pedalled faster, slipping the gears upwards, and he reckoned he was doing thirty miles an hour or so, just within the speed limit.

The speed limit did not concern the car behind him. The horn beeped, lights flashed and he could nearly feel the bumper nudging the rear wheel of the bike as the car roared behind him. He looked backwards and glimpsed two scumbags in the car, shaven heads, tattoos and gold chains. Their mouths roared in feral outrage, eyes narrowed to slits.

Bollocks, thought Black, it just isn’t worth it. He pulled over to the side and the car roared past, forcing him onto the roadside. But he made sure he gave it the finger, middle digit upraised in the universal gesture of “Fuck You”.

Then the car’s brakelights flashed anger-red and it screamed to a halt. The doors opened and two men poured out on either side, ignorant of the pouring rain and

“Wot you saying, you facking cant,” roared the driver, his England football shirt darkening with raindrops. “You reckon you’re facking hard, you facking twat?” His finger jabbed like a knife and the other fist clenched.

“I’ll facking DOO YOO,” grunted the passenger, his eyes and mouth bulging in outrage like his stomach which strained against his poloshirt.

Both men walked towards Black.

Ohh fuck…. he thought. He reached down for the bicycle pump strapped to the frame, a short-handled stubby object.

The two men stopped short of Black, raindrops plinking on their shaved heads.

“Wot the fack you gonna do with that, mate?” laughed the driver.

“I’ll stick it up your FACKIN ARSE!” spat the passenger.

Black pumped it once and then bent the handle backwards at an angle. He pointed it at the passenger and it spat with a brief hiss.  The man’s left eye vanished in a burst of blood and he fell to his knees.

The driver froze, his mouth flapping like a fish. “Wot …. wot …”

“Wot wot indeed, you twat,” said Black, as he reached into his pouch. The combination spanner glinted in the headlight glare. One edge was sharpened and Black slid his fingers through the spanner-holes, turning the tool into a razor-sharp knuckleduster. “Two-two calibre rimfire, dickhead.”

Black wheeled towards the driver and slashed, slicing through forearms and throat. The man collapsed forward onto the roadside, blood pouring from his neck-wound in a crimson rush.  Traffic began to queue up behind them, and a puzzled driver rolled down his window.

“Teach you to cut me up,” he hissed at the dead men, and then he pedalled away, just a cyclist in black, as the police would later be told.

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