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“You can tell Hans to go to he–”
One of Drum’s men punches Jeb so hard, he blacks out before he even hits the pavement. There was nothing I could do for him. So I don’t feel bad when I take off running in the opposite direction. He would live. I was promised that a long time ago.
“Get her!” I hear Drum call from behind me. I sprint back towards the warehouse. With any luck, I’d make it to my bike before Drum’s guys could reach me. I don’t even stop when I reach the docks. Lucky for me the boards hold under my weight, but not so lucky, they hold for Drum’s guys too. I somehow manage to make it to my bike and jump on before they reach me. I pedal hard and fast, faster than I’ve ever pedaled in my life. I feel the heat flooding my veins. My skin is burning, as if it were on fire. I have to force myself to take slow, deliberate breaths despite the fact I’m running for my life. I couldn’t lose control. Not here. Not now.
I hear a car rumbling to life and I know if it spots me, I wouldn’t stand a chance. If I could just reach the city again, I’d be okay. The city has people. They wouldn’t dare try and take me there. The city. I have to reach the city. Reach the city or die. Win at their sick game or die. That’s how it always worked.
I never make it. I don’t even come close. The van pulls up in front of my bike so fast, I slam into it before I have time to break. The force is so strong I nearly black out when my head goes slamming into the window. Three men hop out of the car. Just three. I nearly laugh, but then the Fiery hot engulfs me and I’m gone. The Monster is awake.
I feel my body begin to shake, my muscles getting tighter, growing stronger, adrenaline rushes through my veins and my heart has now gone from beating its normal seventy five beats per minute to two hundred and fifty. The smell of blood so close makes my mouth water. It’s been a long time since I’ve gotten to fight. Really fight. It’s times like these I miss the Cage.
I slam into the first guy and take him down with ease but two more appear, pinning me to the ground while the third slams down on my chest. I thrash around under the man’s weight and eventually place a good kick to his chest that sends him slamming into the side of the van. The two men tighten their grip on my arms, but they are no match for me. I lift one man off the ground and send him crashing down onto the other. They both lose their grips and I wrench free. I see Drum appear by the docks, I can sense his fear. I can smell his blood. There was nowhere for him to run. So I take off. But not away from him. I never run from my prey.
I reach him in a matter of seconds. Drum’s eyes widen in horror. I think I’m screaming, but it’s hard to tell for sure. When The Monster was out, I was never really certain of anything. Except one thing. Kill. And right now, I needed to kill. Kill or die.
Win or die.
Then I hear it. The unmistakable sound of his heartbeat. This only sets on a new frenzy and I go wild at the smell of fresh blood. I was so hungry. So ravenously hungry, I couldn’t stand it.
“Please,” He begs, falling to his knees. “Please don’t.”
I lift him by the shirt with one hand and send him slamming against the dumpster so hard, he’s unconscious before he hits the ground.
“Jay!” I hear someone scream. I turn, ready to launch at my newest victim, but I stop short when I see Jeb running towards me. I see him, I can sense his fear. I can smell his blood. There was nowhere for him to run. But then I remember something. I remember Jeb is supposed to be my friend. He has never given me any reason to want to kill him. I want to lunge, I want to tear his throat out so bad it hurts. But this memory stops me. I sink to my knees forcing myself to relax. Force back the Monster and the hate and the anger and the heat. The heat that burned so deep it never really went away. I close my eyes, willing myself to relax. I take slow breathes, forcing my heart rate down. My muscles eventually begin to wane and I feel myself returning to normal. The Monster was at bay, for now.
“Jay,” I hear Jeb approaching me.
“Don’t.” I warn him. “Just stay away, please.”
He backs up, slowly and then makes his way towards Drum. I don’t need to see him check his pulse and I don’t need to seem him shake his head to know Drum is dead. His heartbeat had stopped the moment I slammed him into the dumpster. I know how to win.
Finally, when I’m sure it’s gone, I get up not daring to look at Jeb.
“It’s not your fault.” He says softly.
“Yes, it is.”
“No,” He says in a sad voice. “They did this to you.”
“I did this to myself!” I yell at him. “You don’t get it do you? I did this to myself. Win or die. Win or die.” The last words nearly come out as a whisper.
“I think you owe me that hit now.”
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