"Because he was the one that never got caught!"
"When I look back on my life, it's not that I don't want to see things exactly as they happened, it's just that I prefer to see them in an artist way. And truthfully, the lie of it all is much more honest because I invented it. Clinical psychology tells us arguably that trauma is the ultimate killer. Memories are not recycled like atoms and particles in quantum physics; they can be lost forever. It's sort of like my past is an unfinished painting, and as the artist of that painting, I must fill in the ugly holes and make it beautiful again."
I know a lot about drugs and the effects they have on the human body. This spawns from two years of working at a pharmacy, reading the details of each chemical substance in stock purely out of fascination. With this understanding, I have the capability to imagine what can be done with them.
After about three years of chaos, America was getting "better". Better Living, which had started out as an insurance company, became a pharmaceutical business after they began to reinforce a new government in 2015. The CEO, a tiny Japanese woman named Gogo Nyusu, took office as president that year. It wasn't really hard to get in, considering she was the richest person alive at that point and that she controlled the Scarecrow, a team of assassin police that exterminated any threat to the company. The nation's capital was moved to my hometown of Los Angles and renamed as the infamous Battery City, not because of BL/i's new line of power tools, mind you. It was given this name to intimidate its population and coerce them to follow the lead of their corporation. They started making battery operated guns that would send a bolt of electricity through your body to act as a bullet. These were only allowed to authorized personnel, of course, but more and more people started hacking the machines that dispensed the weapons.
Soon, talk of a revolt came about, and Leanna was balls to the wall about it. She spent weeks in her room, formulating plans to take down the industry. I brought her food once a week and eventually just moved her to my apartment so I could make sure she didn't die. When I wasn't working, I was at home, helping her plan a rebellion. We started trying to get people on our side. Some came willingly, but others weren't lucky enough to choose; they could barely function their motor skills. It was then that we realized the effects of the drugs. They were controlling us.
With my experience of medication, I could tell when somebody was beyond help. Granted, most of them were, but others were able to be saved. It took being isolated in a room for a few days while their bodies cleansed, but they usually came around. By the end of 2016, we had about twenty-three rebels living with us in our two bedroom apartment, and fifty-nine others ready to fight. In March of 2017, we fled the city and got as far as Utah before the Draculoid soldiers caught up to us. Thankfully, we had 268 rebels on our side, and we weren't afraid to fight. So we did. We killed them.
More people heard about the "Battle of Utah", and headed our way. In April, we had anywhere from 2,000 to 4,000 people. We were getting too big, too fast. We needed a name. I'm not sure how Leanna came up with it, but she decided that we would be called Killjoys, and that everyone would name their guns and then go by that name. I never did name mine.
"Was she a good friend?"
"What?" Oh, yeah. Party Poison. I kinda forgot he was even in the room. "Oh, um. I suppose." Poison didn't really seem satisfied with my answer, but he kept quiet.
"Listen, I need to do something. Can you possibly take me somewhere", I ask.
"Um, what do you need to do, exactly?" He's obviously confused, and I don't see how.
"To be honest, I need to pick something up. It's out in Zone 5, right off of Guano. Think you and I could run after it?"
"Sure", he says after a few seconds of consideration.
It's just me and Poison right now and the silence is kind of awkward, so I turn the radio onto JUNKPUNK just so I won't have to listen to nothing. The familiar sound of Dr. D's voice tell us the traffic report and the list of casualties within the last day.
"What are you getting again?" This guy needs to shut his face. The radio was on.
I glower and grit my teeth. "Something I need."
Ahead, I see the small white bomb shelter that was built for the rebellion. I point it out to Poison and tell him to turn off there. Seconds later, he stops the car at the side of the structure, and I bail out of the Firebird, removing my gun from the holster. I don't know who else could be in there, so I want to be cautious of getting dusted before I can even pick up the bundle. I knock in a specific pattern that will grant me entry, and Ariyah comes to the small peep hole in the metal door.
"Who's there", she calls. Considering I've dyed my hair blond, cut most of it of it off, and started wearing contact, she won't recognize me.
"Your lil' sis." Now, Ariyah isn't ACTUALLY my sister, but she might as well be. She helped raise me. I hear her unlock the eight dead bolts and twist the handle before I see her large body standing in the doorway. She's the same as she always was- multicolored dreads, gauges, piercings, face tattoos that barely show up on her skin, weird makeup, everything. Only a lot skinner.
Immediately, she pulls me into a hug and I almost can't breathe. Her strong arms are holding my head to her huge chest, gripping me tightly. "I HAVEN'T SEEN YOU IN SOO LONG!"
"Came... To get... Violence's", I manage to choke out. She releases me and I sink into the house to find about twenty children playing with various games and toys. I spot a little boy with black hair and tan skin drawing dead birds in the corner and I KNOW who that is.
"Hey, Kristofferson!" He looks up at me and I get a blast of his pretty hazel eyes. God, he really didn't look like Ariyah at all. He runs up and hugs me and shouts "AUNT MOLLY!" To that, three other little ones surround my body, latching onto me. Two are my blonde six-year-old niece and three-year-old nephew, Ariana and Damon. Normally, I would be coming to get her, but Amanda, her mother, is somewhere in Zone 6 and is perfectly capable of getting her own children. The other one is Eli, my kid brother. I've never been is his life much, so he doesn't know my relation to him and I prefer to keep it that way. He thinks I died years ago. As far as any of these kids know, I'm just Aunt Molly.
Out of the corner of my eye I see a boy with white hair and sleepy green eyes, and I know it's Leanna's son. I struggle to get free from the babies, but I get to him eventually. "Why, hello there, Mordecai", I smile. I grab his hand and walk over to Ariyah. "I know I wasn't here long, but I have to go. There's someone waiting for me outside." She looks disappointed, and it's makes me feel like shit.
"Oh. Well, at least tell me who it is."
"His name's is Party Poison. You ever heard of him?" Her face lights up.
"OF COURSE I HAVE! Dude, he's a legend. Korse himself is looking him!"
"Korse is looking for both of us as well. Why is it a big deal?"
"Because he was the one that never got caught!" What?
"... He's never be captured? Seriously?"
"YEAH! They never manage to get him back to the city before he escapes." Wow. I tell Ariyah goodbye, and wave to the kiddies before leaving.
I put Mordecai in the back seat of the Pontiac and strap him in.
"You didn't tell me you were getting a person", Poison bitches. Oh, bother.
"You didn't tell me that you were a famous Killjoy."
"You didn't ask."
"Neither did you. I told you I needed to get something, then led you to the Killjoy daycare. It was your responsibility to predict what I was getting. His name is Mordecai, by the way. He's Violence's kid." Screech. The car jolts to a sudden stop and he just looks at me.
"Look, I'm fine with you being with us. I'm even cool with you having this boy with you and giving birth at some point. But I need you to be a little conscious of names, okay? Even Blasta Violence is covering up hers, so I expect you to give a damn about your name, as well as his. Got that?" He's pissing me off now. I try to swallow the anger, but it's too much. I'm gonna do it.
"I don't know who the fuck you think you are, but don't you dare read me the Killjoy right act. I helped lead this rebellion and I will call myself whatever the fuck I want. You seriously think I gave your brother my real name? I'm not a dumbass, like you. I don't drive a flamboyant car or dye my hair bright red, or wear a jacket with my symbol on it. I make choices that will keep me safe, like giving people a name that doesn't sound absurd."
He gives me a look of understanding, like he knows me inside and out; like he's got me all figured out. I'm not sure why, but I regret saying everything that came out of my mouth
"You're Ellie London, aren't you?"