“Okay everyone. Go home.” It was finally eight o’clock, and we were finally off duty. Today was a longer day than normal. Everyone went into the locker room, and took off their gear. Everyone seemed exhausted after the length of today. I thought they were all weak.
I exited the locker room, and was greeted by Shelby rather quickly. “Let’s go, Officer.” She led me out of the building at a rather intense speed, then slowed down once we got out. “Okay, good. If everyone saw me out with you, they’d think we were dating. That’s not good in the workplace.”
I shrugged. “Really, what is appropriate for the workplace? With all due respect, our organisation killed four people. I don’t really think we have a place to speak of work ethic.” Shelby laughed a hearty laugh. It sounds like she’s already started calming down.
“You’re right. Work ethic was lost when we militarised our police, anyway. So who cares anymore? I’m glad I have you around. I’m too tired to think clearly. Maybe you should write my mission report, too.” She giggled.
“No, I think that my writing style probably differs from yours too much for that to work.”
Shelby sighed slightly. “Yeah, that’s true. Oh well, a girl can dream.”
Shelby looked toward me. “We’ll be at my house shortly. I live rather close to the police department. It’s rather convenient.” She then pushed me to the left, and we started walking to her porch.
“Well. That was shortly,” I said.
Shelby laughed. “I catch you off guard?” She opened the door, and motioned for me to go in.
“I’ll get down to making some food, you just make yourself comfortable.” Her house had three ways to go right out of the entrance. There were stairs directly forward that lead up, a room to the right, and a kitchen to the left. Shelby moved to the left. I figured that the room to the right was actually her living room. Either way, everything was close together and her house was rather cozy.
I took off my jacket and hung it up next to her door. I followed her into the kitchen and seated myself at her two person table next to a window adjacent to her front door. I leaned back, and took a deep breath. It had been a few days since my last real meal. I had only eaten prepackaged foods for a bit, because I was so busy with work and the Horsemen. This was a pleasant change.
“You like my house, Ren?” I nodded, “Yeah, I got lucky with this one. The previous owner got executed, so I was able to buy it for cheap, furnished and everything. It was the best choice I’d ever made.”
Shelby seemed proud of the house. I bet the previous owner was, too. I almost wondered what sort of things he did here before getting himself shot. It didn’t really matter, though. It was just another empty thought I had due to boredom.
Shelby worked out a stir fry at some incredible speeds. She had at three pans and pots working at the same time. It truly stunned me. “How did you learn to cook like that?”
“Oh, I just learned to be quick,” She smiled, clearly smug, “Work and a rebellion are hard to do at the same time.” I nodded.
“That’s quite a feat.” Shelby thanked me, and put two prepared plates onto the table.
“So, Ren. What do you know of the deaths that happened last night?” I put up a finger, and quickly swallowed what I had in my mouth.
“I know that Vince and I weren’t wearing masks. I knew that if we let them live, they would point out that I was there the night that their house was burnt down. I was considering killing them while Vince was calling Famine, but didn’t intend to act until we had orders. Then, the daughter burst into louder tears than before and tried to run away. I shot her. That was when I realised that I couldn’t let the rest of the family report me for murder, so I shot all of them in quick succession. There was no way I was going to let everyone get caught because of some poor oversight.” Shelby nodded.
“I think… I think you did the right thing. Besides, even if we burnt down their home, they would just buy another, right? And then we wouldn’t have really made a difference.” Shelby forced the words out of her mouth at an intense speed, almost as if she was trying to convince herself that what she was saying was true.
“That’s true. I hadn’t really thought about that. I guess that means everything worked out in the end.” Shelby nodded some more.
“So why were you sent to military academy? If you don’t mind me asking.” Shelby quickly pulled her fork to her mouth.
“I don’t mind. I wasn’t sent there for the same reasons most other kids are: My parents couldn’t handle me. They thought that I was too much, and got rid of me. I haven’t seen them in years.”
Shelby shook her head. “No, I figured that much. I wanted to know why your parents kicked you out.”
I sighed. “I did some things that were incredibly wrong in the eyes of the public. I tried to… Kill someone at a young age,” Shelby coughed. I kept talking, “I was easily irritated at the time, and decided I wanted to solve the problem on my own.”
Shelby was taken aback. “Jesus, Ren! Holy hell, that’s insane!” I nodded. “You seriously did that?” I nodded. “Christ. What are you? I mean, I know that the academy forces you to execute a criminal for an exam, but most of the kids aren’t even sure if that’s the right thing to do…” Shelby trailed off.
“That’s why I’m usually not one to divulge information about myself. It can be quite detrimental to my security.”
“I won’t tell anyone. I promise. In fact, let me tell you something about me, to even the field.” This sounded appealing. I motioned for her to go on.
She sighed. “I get it, though. Why you enjoy what you do. When I had to perform my first execution, I felt thrilled at the power I held. I felt thrilled knowing that after four false trigger clicks, I would kill the man on his knees before me. I enjoyed his fear after every click. I liked the power that it gave me. Although, I don’t think you were looking for power, trying to kill someone.” I shook my head.
“Power isn’t what appeals to me. I simply hold myself above everyone else. I eradicate problems. I keep myself fed. I keep myself entertained. Life is fleeting, so I take care of what little I have.” Shelby nodded.
“Ren, I understand a bit better now. It feels good. How would you like to succeed me as commander if I ever die?”
“Why not?” Shelby giggled.
“You’ll have the chance to raise a little hell for me, if it should come to it.”
“Why not?” Shelby laughed.
“Then it’s settled. Let’s meet again sometime.”
“Sounds good to me.” Shelby took my empty plate, and moved it into the sink. I guess I had also learned to eat quickly, to make up for my lack of time.
I stood up and moved to the door. I put my jacket on, and opened the the door. “I’ll see you tomorrow, Shelby.”