For our picture this month we have this lovely image:
And now onto the story!
Everything looked so damn familiar. The dark green walking bridge over a river, bright in the sun. The concrete surface and the lime colored metal structure next to the path. The structure that turned out to be a bridge for motor vehicles. Elegant buildings with balconies bookended each side. It was exactly like his dream. Vision. Whatever.
No, that wasn’t right. In the dream, he’d been on the bridge with the car way on his left side. Slowly, he turned in a circle surveying the area. This whole situation was totally fucked up. He was a man who believed in facts, evidence, not weird-assed woo woo shit. And, yet, here he was in the middle of a place straight out of his dreams. He knew he’d never been here. The country yes, but this particular city. No. He had no reason to since he traveled where his job sent him. He was not a man who went on vacations.
Damn, he just wanted to turn and walk away, but something drove him. He knew he had to be here in this place, on this date and at this time. Shoving his hands in his pants pockets, he began to slowly walk across the bridge. He scanned the surrounding area, building a map in his head, which he filled with every person, car, and object.
Reaching the mid-point, he turned and saw the view from his dream. The bright sunny day, the blue sky filled with puffy white clouds, and the people. A woman in a pair of black pants, purple shirt, with her red hair in a pony tail walked toward him accompanied by a young girl. He knew them. They were from his dream, though he hadn’t been able to see them clearly. Today, he watched as they laughed and talked. Mother and daughter, maybe.
A glint in the distance pulled his attention and he zeroed in on the three-story building ringed in balconies. Something wasn’t…he was moving before he thought. He shoved the woman and child to the ground covering them with his body as shots rang out. The people around them screamed and scattered, racing in all directions.
Rolling to his feet, he picked the child up with one arm and grabbed the woman’s hand pulling her up. Then he began to move, towing the woman with him toward one of the bridge supports. Once on the other side and out of the line of fire, he put the girl down.
“Are you both okay?”
The woman crouched and began to check the girl over, who had begun to cry.
“I think so,” she said, her voice shaky. “What happened?”
“Someone was shooting at the bridge,” he said, not admitting that the bullets were aimed for her. Not until they made it to safety. They were too exposed for her to freak out. He needed her to stay as calm as possible so she would keep the kid calm.
The girl sniffled and wrapped her arms around her mother’s waist. The woman held her close and looked up at him. Waiting. Waiting for him to do something.
Shit, he wasn’t anyone’s hero. That wasn’t his role. Get in, do the job and get out with no one the wiser. That was his role. That’s the way he preferred it. Unfortunately, he couldn’t leave them. The dream was driving him on with a certainty that settled into his bones. He was supposed to protect this woman and child. From what, he didn’t know. Not yet. He would though since that was his job. He gathered intel to ensure his jobs went off without a hitch. This was why he was the best assassin the government had.