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[Fiction] The Shooting


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Exerpts from C.T. Preston's journal, posted on the Opnet September 6th 2015

I keep being asked about that shot. It is one of the few things caught on broadcast to come out of Ibiza that isn’t a totally tragedy, so they want to dissect it. They want to know why I would shoot to save a total bastard and leave a heroine to suffer and maybe die. They want to know why I did not just shoot the bastard between the eyes and have done with it. They want to know if I saw something, and if so, what.

They do not really want to know the answers, though. They want their pet theories confirmed, or they want me to remain silent to keep the mystery spinning. They do not want the truth.

The Truth is that Count Orzaiz is an important lynchpin in Nova Society … such as it is … and that Ragnarockette is only a hero. We can make more heroes. We can not replace the Count. It is that simple.

The Angel of Bones was a pussy. He was some dumb, head-stuck-up-his-ass punk with delusions of grandeur who used the chaos to inflate his fragile ego. He was not worth a bullet to the head.

No one wants to see the world that exists without the Count. Suffice it to say, it will suck for the rest of us unfortunates left alive in the not too distant future. Besides, the odds were that my son would get to Ms. Danielsdottir before she expired, and that’s what happened. I hate being in such close proximity to so many novas acting toward different outcomes at the same time. It makes figuring the proper course that time will take so damn difficult.

Still, Neil saved the girl, I saved the Count, and the scumbag is going to jail for a long, long time. This time, it all worked out. This time, I get to see one of the more positive outcomes of my actions in the faces of novas that have no idea the fine line they walk between Visionary and Beast. I am sure most people will not get that, but the right ones will. This time …

Someone in the Spanish Military sent me the Angel’s severed arm. It is a gross thing, severed right above the elbow were my HV-shotgun took him. To think that bastard sneered at me when I pointed a gun … a mere gun … at his Mightiness. He is not laughing now. I hear he is hungry as shit and I imagine the guards withhold tidbits of food to torture him with. He has enough taint to make people do crazy shit like that. Too damn bad. They had better hope he never gets out because old age is not something that one needs to fear. Not in this century.

When you are a police officer, you encounter gross stupidity every day. Criminals do not tend to be the brightest minds on the planet. The Angel was no exception. He was not evil, only selfish. He wanted to become somebody and could not figure out a better way to do it than to murder two better known novas on a live Op-cast. How fucking stupid is that?

Instant gratification moron … he could not wait a year or two and become a top selling elite with his own line of merchandising?

No, he wants to murder a member of Team Tomorrow AND a leading figure in the Teragen … and he expects to live long enough to bask in the glory of it, too.

He wanted to compete? He wanted to put himself on a ranking system closer to Divis Mal and placing poor Hiram Goldberg on the bottom?

He competed. He lost big time. I guess he was not that competitive after all. I guess he is not going to be collecting those competitive rates as an elite. I guess he is going to get to see Count Orzaiz and Ragnarockette on the vid and realize what a waste he made of his life. I hope he chokes on it.

Neil surprises me. His heart explodes and he gets up and walks away from it. He was embarrassed, not frightened. He had this look of ‘whoops, was that my heart that just exploded out of my chest’ with the same look of a child spilling spaghetti on their Sunday best. He was a man when he walked away from John Hopkins, but he has grown into something much, much more since then. He makes me proud. I still like looking at the pictures of him saving Ragnarockette’s life. I can take his body becoming horribly twisted and broken. I am glad I can. I like the look of determination on his face as he grabs her leg at the same time as the Angel lashes out. I like seeing the Angel fail and the realization of that failure coming to his face right before I shoot him again … and again … he would not let go, after all. Regenerating is a great tool, but it takes something out of you. It took it out of him, alright.

Neil says that something awoke inside of him. Something sprang forth from the desire to not let that girl die. Something new and good and something he wants to spend time getting to understand and know. He is special that way. He does not take these gifts for granted.

Other novas do take their blessings for granted. They assume godhood. They assume that the world is theirs to exploit because of their nodes. We have a great deal of maturity to achieve less we fall down in a way the whole world notices. The Angel of Bones assumed much and he has fallen down hard. Will anyone notice?

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