Red Hering

Richard turned the key in the ignition. Twice. The car signaled its displeasure with what could be called a cough, some stuttering, and a growl. Richard gave the steering wheel a long hug and took a deep breath, sat back in his leather seat and gave the key another twist, quicker, hoping the increased force would give the car an extra incentive to start. Futile. A short bark. The battery had gone dead, the cold must have sucked the charge right out of it. Richard lingered for a moment, then he reached for his guitar case, which lay on the passenger seat, and opened the door.

“What took you so long, Dick?” Donna, the tall, slim lady Richard was to meet asked. “Had to go public, car wouldn’t start. This time o’ year, the schedule’s all messed up, busses 15 to 30 late, if they go at all” Richard withheld the “sorry”, he hated it when she called him Dick. He hated it in general, but she knew it, and she did it to piss him off. “So, where’s our gig?” he asked her without further ado. “See that gent over there? The one with the bald spot in the grey suit?” Richard looked at the man she nodded at. Bald spot was quite an understatement, it was more like a crown of hair that ran from one ear over the base of the skull to the other ear, as grey as his suit. Other than that, he didn’t look that aged, hardly wrinkles or spot, a little squat, but muscular. The Suit couldn’t hide the fact that he went to the gym. Maybe the loss of hair was due to anabolic steroids? Richard liked to speculate on that kind of thing, especially when it meant he could have a bigger member. “What about him?” Richard had to stop his train of thought, after all, this was a good chance to prove his level of professionalism to Donna. “He’s meeting a few of his fella’s here, and they need some of your special music for their catching up party. Two are already here, we’re missing two more, but they shouldn’t be long. You don’t go in until they’re all there” Donna handed Richard an envelope, he weighed it quickly, opened it, and smiled. “Another one of those when you’re finished. I recommend you buy a new car after this”. The gent in the grey suit was accompanied by two other men, both in suits, black tuxes, black hair, black eyes. They must be twins, Richard deduced. Donna and Richard sat at the table for another half hour, observing the suits, when two ladies entered, one dressed in velvet red as ruby, carrying a patent-leather black spaghetti-strap handbag, the other wearing functional jeans, military boots and a white tank top. “That’s our queue” Donna said, when she stood up from the table, leaving a 20 for the waitress “Don’t let them wait too long”. Richard opened his case, shouldered the AL76 Laser Carbine, set on auto, took up position a mere 50 feet away from the table with the suits, and opened fire. The twins stood up to draw their guns, but they were hit hard on the torso by Richard’s salvo. The lady in the velvet dress screamed as her friends fell to the ground, while the anabolic hero in the grey suit charged at him. Richard directed his next volley at him, but his finger wouldn’t pull the trigger. He felt a light stream flowing over his forehead, and the world rising around him as he sank to his knees. By the time his head hit the floor, Dick was dead.

Resa tucked her 50 cal back into the holster on her belt and went over to the stranger’s body, the stranger who had shot Bill and Ted, and would have killed them all if it weren’t for Zack and her. She pulled an envelope from his body, where she found 5 grand and a note: Grand central station, locker 005 982 855

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