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Tiburón

She didn’t even put up a fight. From the sorry look in her eyes, she must have long since come to terms with the risks of living in a garrison town these days. Usually the people will either panic and scream or scramble for their gun, but she just quietly faced me with a pitiful expression. The little girl reacted as expected, but the way her mother simply gave up has left me… uneasy. It made the job of killing them… difficult. Thrill replaced with anxiety and confusion. I got the job done though and the sound of a broken man nearby quickly brought me back to my senses, so I got out quick.

Calling this place fortified is a horrible joke. Tiburón is a podunk little port town forced to take up arms whether or not they wanted to. It really shows, too, because calling the militia amateur is almost giving them too much credit, they haven’t landed a single hit on any of us all day. Can’t even track us through the nearby jungle, what’s supposed to be their own home turf. It should be hilarious, the others are clearly having a blast… but I can’t stop thinking about those eyes.

“Havin’ fun yet?” my partner asked as he approached.

“C’mon now, it’s a simple question,” he chided, noticing my hesitation.

I shook my head. “Sorry, blanked out there. It’s too easy.”

“That’s the best part!” he excitedly said. “They named the place after us so it’s only right they leave it nice an’ warm for us!”

He playfully threw his arm over my shoulder and his expression quickly changed from happy to concerned as he noticed my troubled gaze.

“Listen, I don’t know what you’re dealin’ with right now, but I need you to set it aside for now. I don’t need to see you get shot because you ‘blanked out’ again.”

“I know,” I said with a sigh. “Don’t worry though, I’m sure a little more action is all I need.”

He smiled and gave me a thumbs up, then gestured for me to follow as he took off again. My words rattled in my head as I fought with myself, trying to forget what I saw and get back to business, but I don’t know what I’m feeling let alone how to deal with it. It’s a strange feeling, like my chest is constricting around something really heavy. It’s kind of hard to breathe, too. I looked up to find that my partner is long gone and my feet are rooted in place. Instead of my partner, I see a towering figure looking my way.

“You are… anguished?” she said softly. “Does this not please you?”

I couldn’t muster a response. Anguish. Is that what I’m feeling? I could only imagine how pitiful my face must look as I lightly shook my head.

“Come,” she beckoned. “You are not alone in your sorrow, I have gathered several others like you. We will end this madness.”

At that moment, the anguish seemingly lessened and I managed to walk to her. It’s true, there are at least ten more guys here and they all look meek. I wonder what brought them here? For that matter, I wonder what called her here? She must have better things to do than interfere with an operation as small as this, so what’s special about us? What is she planning? We’re walking right towards the main entrance…

Gunfire suddenly echoes in front of us and the bullets fly, yet we keep walking. One… two… three… five… she’s taking so many bullets and yet she seems entirely unfazed. As I counted seventeen, a stray bullet grazed my ear and something hit my head as I fell to my knees. I can’t hear anything over the ringing in my ears and my vision is blurred, but I can barely make out some figures standing in front of her. They aren’t shooting. Are they talking? Looking behind me, I see the other guys all kneeling with their heads down. Are we surrendering?

With a struggle, I’m beginning to hear voices again, though I can’t really tell what’s being said. The towering woman suddenly outstretches her arms, causing the men with guns to flinch and step back. Somehow, I can make out some of her words…

“This cannot continue, you and I both know this.”

We really are surrendering. I bow my head and my vision seems to get cloudier.

“You must cease fire. I ask not for your forgiveness or approval, but tolerance. My people are through with this senseless violence.”

Peace? Can we really have peace after all that’s happened? Wait a minute… the enemy general was meant to be here today. So this is why she came here. I didn’t think I’d live to see peace between our people, but if anyone can make it happen, it’s her. That shorter figure behind the others must be the general. Maybe this is that fate thing the humans talk about from time to time.

She suddenly grabs hold of the barrel of one of the rifles trained on her and holds it to her forehead. She can’t…

“If my death is what it takes to earn your trust, so be it.”

A flash of light and she falls to her knees, still upright until they kick her lifeless body aside. She really traded her life for this. Will they even keep their word? My vision is beginning to clear up. The tight, heavy feeling in my chest is back and I’m rooted in place once again. One of the figures approaches one of the other guys that followed her, then lets him go. One by one, the figure sends away the other guys with their lives. I guess the negotiations were successful. Finally, the figure comes to me. I barely make out a familiar scream nearby. I quietly look up at the broken, vengeful man behind the barrel of the gun with sorry eyes.

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