The sun set slowly over the city, staining the western sky with reds and oranges. L.A. sprawled out in a haze under the failing light. The harsh yellow of street lamps replaced the softer hues of the sun. Despite the transition between natural and artificial, traffic continued to buzz.
If there was one constant about life in a big city, it was that traffic did not care about sunsets or storms or natural disasters. People had places to be in L.A. and they would be damned if anything was going to stop them. It always made Azazial laugh.
Life in L.A. was like watching an ant hill. Everything crawled. Everything moved. Millions of tiny creatures hustled and bustled on pre-constructed routes.
But nothing fascinated Azazial more than watching them at sunset. Watching as they raged against the coming night. It was beautiful. Even Lucifer did not challenge God’s order the way that these people did every day.
He floated down from his heavenly hover, landing lightly on the streets below. The leather soles of his shoes whisked gently on the concrete as he moved. His deep, brown eyes scanned the shadows, searching.
After several moments, he found what he was looking for. Some tatted up man in a shirt two sizes too large was prowling the edges of the yellow light. These so called predators were always the most fun. They always had such a strong sense of entitlement.
Azazial moved to cross paths with the thug, barely giving him a glance as he moved towards the mouth of an alley. Like he expected, the thug couldn’t pass up the chance of attacking one dressed as finely as Azazial. Azazial didn’t even struggle as the thug grabbed him by the shoulder and forced him into the alley.
With his back pushed against the alley wall, Azazial watched calmly as a gun was leveled at his face. “Your money or your life!” The thug’s voice echoed off the nearby buildings.
Azazial laughed softly at the threat. “And just how are you going to kill me? With that Hi-Point? You’d be better off with a hammer.”
“Shut up and give me your wallet.” The thug placed his thumb on the gun’s hammer, cocking it back, but it started to shake lightly at the confrontation.
“Very well.” Azazial shrugged. He pulled his wallet from his pocket and held it out in front of him. The mugger grabbed it and ran off towards the far end of the alley, leaving Azazial standing in the shadows.
* * *
Mad Max ran for several streets before he finally slowed to a walk. Lighting a joint, he inhaled deeply before making his way back towards his crappy little apartment.
He kept an eye out for any cop cars as he moved. Sure he had quickly moved a few blocks away, but pigs always liked to try and mess with him. Self righteous bastards always thought they were better than the people down here.
Mad Max was pulled from his thoughts by the sounds of footsteps behind him. He ignored them at first. After all, it was a light sound, not the heavy thud of boots or Doc Martins. Two turns into his trip home, however, and the sound was still behind him.
He spun around quickly, hand going to his waist. “What do you want f..” Mad Max’s words trailed off when he saw no one behind him. “Cheap ass weed for me hearing things.”
He came to the run down building his apartment was in a few minutes later. As he was about to put his keys in the door, he saw something rushing towards him from the corner of his eye. Mad Max dropped his keys as he turned, but there was nothing but shadows lining the walls of the building.
With shaky hands, he picked up his keys and stepped inside the bare apartment. He needed a drink to calm himself. Opening the fridge, Mad Max screamed as a thousand black bugs exploded from the inside the appliance.
He scrambled back away from the encroaching horde, hitting his head on the coffee table. The insects crawled up his legs and over his chest. They reached his neck… and disappeared.
“Christ!” Max was panting on the floor. “I’m never buying weed from Crazy Lou again.”
“It’s not the weed you need to worry about,” a voice laughed softly from the corner of the apartment.
Max jumped up and pulled out his gun. “Yo, you’re that joker I robbed earlier. How did you get in here?”
The man stood in the shadows of the room refusing to move or speak. Max nodded to himself as he tried to keep his hands from shaking. “Fine. I got something for you anyway.” He pulled the trigger several times but heard nothing but the click of a misfire.
The man laughed again as he glided towards Max. “I told you that you would be better off with a hammer.” The man paused a moment as he pulled something from his coat and raised it above his head. Max blinked as he saw the hammer hover above the horns on the man’s head. “Here. Let me show you.”
Thwack! Thwack! Thwamph!
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