11/28/14

Oumar ~ Grey Eyes in the Dark

A/N ~ Sorry for the delay. Friend of mine called and we got into a passionate debate about - of all things - Ferguson.

Previously ~ Layers

Anh Sinh Oumar
The weirdest thing about dying was how hard Anh Sinh struggled to remember details from his death and before.  He remembered hovering, remembered the sound of bullets being dug out of his flesh and dropped into a metal bowl.  But he didn't actually remember getting shot.  He didn't remember going to school or why he was studying psychology in the first place.

He did briefly remember enjoying surfing the web for hours, but for some reason, he'd lost his taste for technology and preferred the old books Ami had left for him to read.  Reading about folklore and spiritual theory was much more preferable to reading the hot debates online about his death.

According to some folks, he'd been a brute, a mindless thug who got belligerent with the cops and even went so far to attack an officer.  The Mayor and the Chief of Police urged calm in several video and written interviews, while avoiding any direct questions about the cop who shot him.  No one knew the officer's name, and he hadn't been been wearing a body camera.  Some people made comments about Anh Sinh's afro and his "intimidating" build, and dozens of people speculated about his ethnic origins.

I'm a Blasian of average height, you morons, he thought irritably.

Even when he went to YouTube and watched various videos from various angles, it was like watching someone else get killed.  He felt no emotion, no attachment or connection to what he saw, and even though he knew it should bother him, his lack of an emotional response did not.

It's like it all happened to someone else...in another lifetime.

Technically, it was another lifetime.  He couldn't reconnect with his old friends (didn't even remember their names), he couldn't go back to his classes, or even enjoy Sunday brunch with his parents.  Anh Sinh Oumar was dead.  And after the legal and political heat died down, everyone would move on from his death.

***



***

Lying next to a sleeping Patrick Mai was not as weird as he thought it would be; the hunter slept deeply, peacefully. It was soothing listening to him breathe; Anh Sinh lay wide awake looking about the room, noting that Patrick wasn't the decorative type.  If it wasn't a weapon or didn't serve a specific, necessary function, Patrick didn't keep it around.

Dawn was coming.  Strange how he knew that.  Or rather, strange how he felt that.  His breathing and heart rate slowed, his muscles immobilized and Anh Sinh's eyes closed as he felt himself sinking, slowly sinking into a warm comfortable darkness.  There was no pain, no fear; in fact the process felt so familiar he'd could sworn he'd done it a few dozen times.

Patrick Mai
Patrick awoke as the sun lazily rose on the other side of his building.  He hated alarm clocks and so had trained himself to wake on time with no help.  His usually empty king-sized bed was He turned slightly to see Anh Sinh lying next to him, motionless.  He checked for breath and a heartbeat, but found none.

Weird.

Oh, well.  Patrick rose, yawning and stretching as he headed for his kitchen.  He started up the coffeemaker before jumping into the shower.  During daylight hours he had strict regiment: shower, drink one cup of hot coffee (no cream or sugar) while driving to work, and then shutting off his brain for the next nine hours so that when the day job ended, he could focus on the stuff that really mattered.

Though he had degrees in accounting and business, Patrick had no desire for a promotion and so stuck to the mindless numbers crunching.  Sure, he got a minor annual raise, but he didn't really care about that either.  As long as he earned enough for rent and weapons, Patrick was cool.

He ate the same thing for lunch every day at the same grill every day at the same time.  He then returned to his cubicle in the furthest corner of the most isolated department and didn't talk to his coworkers.  After years and countless failed attempts to get Patrick involved in birthdays and company events, his colleagues and superiors had long learned to just leave him alone.

Houston traffic, particularly around Westheimer, consistently guaranteed his arrival at home either at sunset or just after, around the time when all the best parking spaces were usually taken.  He walked into his apartment half expecting Oumar (he couldn't bear to even think of him as "Anh Sinh") to already be up and about.

Instead he found his new roommate in a sleep-like state, tossing and turning as though fending off a nightmare.

"Grey eyes," the Blasian murmured, twisting fitfully.  "Grey eyes."

Patrick's first instinct was to not go shake him awake.  As a general rule, one did not touch a sleeping hunter, but then Patrick remembered that the person in question was a studious, ex-psychology nerd, not a hunter.

Hesitantly, he came to stand by Oumar.

"Oumar."

"Grey eyes....grey eyes in the dark...."

"Oumar."

Patrick rolled his eyes impatiently before reaching out and finally shaking Oumar.

"It's after sunset, Oumar," he said neutrally.  "Can you remember what you saw?"

Sweaty and shaking, Oumar sat up in bed, clearly disoriented.  After a time, his head seemed to clear and he was able to speak.

"My father was talking to me," he rasped.  "He was dying, crossing over...he warned me about a man with grey eyes."  He looked up at Patrick, eyes wild with confusion.  "The hell does that even mean?"

Patrick's voice emerged steadily.  "It means the hunt has begun."

Next ~ Hunters

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