He’s in a club, sitting alone by the bar, drinking shot after shot, feeling the alcohol burn inside him. Dishonorable discharge – what bullshit, he hadn’t done anything wrong. In fact, he’d been rather good at his job, killing people, that is. Apparently too good, they’ve somehow found a way to kick him out, he had no idea why, but it was all as well, he didn’t want to know anyway.
“Do you have a gun?” it was whispered in his ear, too close, he could feel the breath of the other man. He turns, regretting it immediately, face in such close proximity of the other, lips merely inches apart.
He growls, feral, “What do you want?” He couldn’t see the other man properly in the poor lighting, didn’t know who the man was.
“Your gun,” he doesn’t so much as hear it, rather, sees those pale lips move. He doesn’t know why, but he takes a pistol out of his pocket. Not handing it over though, he just holds it in his palm.
He sees those lips curl up into a hint of a smile, “Let me have it, I need to get rid of those two blokes that have been following behind me.” He does, at that moment in time, he doesn’t question why, and he just does.
Two gunshots, the people in the club scream and flee, crowding over the nearest exits because it was so jammed with people. “Thank you,” the man says, giving him a pat on the shoulder. He walks off, but Sebastian catches him by his arm, “My gun?”
The man laughs then, really outright laughs and he was going to ask what was so funny when the man speaks, as if hearing his question, “I’ve just killed two people, and the only thing you’re concerned about is your gun. Oh, I think I like you.”
His gun was returned to him, and he stares at the other man, too many questions floating around his mind, he couldn’t think clearly. His throat closes in on itself, dry and hoarse; he can’t bring himself to speak.
“You’re hired, follow me, Seb.”
He doesn’t ask about what job he’s hired for, or how the man knows his name, he doesn’t question the nickname that he was given either, he simply follows. Because what else could go wrong, right? His life was already screwed up as it is.
They leave by some hidden exit that no one knows about, still pushing their way through the main doors. “They’re all so boring,” he hears the man mutter under his breath, pretty sure that he wasn’t meant to hear it.
“What?” he asks anyway, because why the fuck not.
“They only look for the most obvious routes, exits. Had there been a fire, they’d all be dead. They don’t bother to search beyond that, to question what lies in hidden places. They’re all so dull,” the man sighs, and Sebastian gets a good look of him then.
Almost a head shorter than he is, sunglasses resting on the top of sleeked back jet black hair, round prying eyes with large rings of black around it – insomniac, his brain supplies – cracked pale lips, expensive three piece suit covering a slim frame, leather shoes, probably equally expensive.
“Who are you?” he finally brings himself to say it out loud, and the man giggles, he’d be damned if he ever admitted the sound was cute for someone who killed two men in cold blood.
“Jim,” he says, “you can call me Jim. No one ever does, so you better know that you’re that fuckin’ special.”
He drives as Jim directs him to their destination; once again, he doesn’t voice the questions in his mind. “Gotta sell the car soon,” he sighs, it wasn’t like he was trying to make casual conversation with Jim or anything, and he was just that depressed. The money in his savings would run out sooner or later, he still needed to pay rent, to eat, drink… he sighs again, this time, heavier.
“Nah, I like it, it’s nice, keep it,” Jim’s riding shotgun, fiddling with the car’s audio controls.
“Some people just ain’t as rich as others,” he snaps, because seriously, the man’s clothes were definitely tailor-made, those rings he had on his fingers were definitely diamond and gold, and damn it, that sunglasses resting on top on his head were Ray-Ban – fucking rich bastard.
Jim shrugs though Sebastian couldn’t see it, “You’ll be rich soon enough, I did say that you’re hired.”
“Hired for what, exactly?”
“Oh, you’ll see soon enough, Seb, darling.”
“Seb, you look nervous,” Jim says as he opens the door to his apartment. It was huge – three stories high, guarded with large gates, he had to drive through a whole garden before reaching the lane in front of the main door where he parked his car.
White walls, oak wood floor, the white leather couch was the first thing he notices as he steps through the door, then the large flat screen TV mounted onto the wall. Everything in the house was color coordinated, white, brown, black – simplistic, minimalistic – it looked right out of a home décor magazine.
Sebastian stands and looks, taking everything in, shell shocked. He’d never seen such a beautiful place in his life. There were glass spiral steps leading upstairs, chandeliers decorating the ceiling. He follows Jim, a part of him afraid that he’d get lost in this huge house, the other part of him reminding him that the thought of it was just silly.
“Sorry, don’t mean to,” he says then marvels at the kitchen when it presents itself. A large black and white counter, a vase of fake flowers stands in the middle, two candle stands on either side. Wine glasses hang over the table, a shelf of wine behind. The sink and stove beside it, cupboards above. He breaths in deeply, exhales, “Wow.”
“Don’t apologize, Seb, never apologize for something that isn’t your fault,” Jim’s eyes bore into him, frowning, lips parting slightly like a snarl. Sebastian forgets to breathe for a second, the glare struck something inside him, his chest clenches. Power, he realizes, that’s what it was, pure raw unsuppressed power. He shivers, barely managing a nod.
As quickly as the dark mood came, it passes, and Jim smiles at him again, “Good! Now let’s talk business shall we?”
“Okay, let me get this straight, you’re hiring me to kill people,” Sebastian takes a gulp of wine, “For what, exactly?”
“The plan,” Jim speaks slowly, harshly low, making Sebastian listen, “My plan, our plan. I need you Seb, I really do.”
So that’s how it was that’s how it all started. Till this day, Sebastian doesn’t know if he accepted it because of the money, Jim’s insane laugh, Jim’s ability to switch his mood in the blink of an eye, or the way Jim’s voice dropped a whole octave when he said ‘I need you’. Perhaps it was a combination of two things, or a combination of everything. Sebastian doesn’t question it, merely follows his instincts.
Jim’s voice over his earpiece snaps him out of his daze; it wasn’t like him to drift off like that, especially since he’s on a job. He looks through the scope – thank god, the target was still there, Jim would have skinned him alive otherwise – keeps aim at the back of the man’s head.
“Of course Mr. Robertson, I can assure you that those are the real bio weapons blue print,” Jim speaks in a flawless German accent, Sebastian just admires how his boss can change from one person to another, its simply extraordinary, like everything else Jim does.
Robertson passes Jim a black suitcase in return. Jim opens it, and Sebastian can still see that shit eating grin plastered on the man’s face even when he was perched up two blocks away, “Always a pleasure doing business with you, Mr. Robertson. Now, die.” There it was; his cue. He pulls the trigger immediately, and the man drops dead on the floor.
“Oh, wasn’t that perfect? It all went according to plan! The old bastard never suspected a thing!” Jim was always in a good mood after; he clings on to Sebastian’s arm as they walk towards the car. “Did you see that? The look on his face! Oh it was so marvelous, Seb!”
Sebastian thinks no, he didn’t see anything because he was too far away, but he doesn’t say it. Instead, “Yeah, Jim, I did.”
Jim giggles, and god, Sebastian would never get tired of that sound. Times like these Jim always seems like he’s drunk, perhaps he is, on adrenaline, but what would Sebastian know, he wasn’t a doctor.
Those were the good times, though, where everything falls into place. But there are times that it doesn’t – at least, it doesn’t look that way to Sebastian. Jim denies it, says that it’s always been part of the plan, but really, risking one’s life should never be part of any plan.
Jim never did have a high regard for his life, he always deemed it too boring, too normal. “Life is just a phase, Seb,” he’ll say, “Just a platform for experience.”
So once again, he finds himself looking at the scene unfold from blocks away as Jim almost gets himself killed, their target had unexpected back up. Sebastian covers him, kills everyone in plain sight once Jim’s life is in danger.
Jim would always not talk to him after, not so much as spare him a glance. “I’m sorry,” he apologizes, and Jim punches him in the face.
“Never apologize for something that isn’t your fault, Seb, how many times must I tell you, never,” Jim all but growls at him, punches him in the gut just for good measure.
He coughs, sliding to the floor, “alright, alright, I understand.”
“Good,” Jim walks away, without another word. Sebastian sits on the ground for a while longer, then gets up and follows, leaving a space between them because Jim needs it. Sebastian doesn’t question it.
Jim doesn’t treasure life much, heck, the man even attempts suicide once in a while. He never succeeds though; Sebastian was always there to rescue him.
Whenever Jim wakes up in the bed the next morning, drowsy, he gets angry, scolds and beats Sebastian until he calms down. But Jim never really hurts him, the bruises would fade in a few days, so Sebastian never hits back.
Jim had all the right to be angry at him, for he always interferes with Jim’s death for his own selfish reasons. He cannot bear to see the man go – the man that picked up a piece of trash like him, showed him the wonders of the world, let him taste every sweet victory as another body drops cold on the floor, blood spilling.
This was one of those times. Truthfully, Sebastian hates every one of these little ‘episodes’ Jim has. But he attributes it to just another thing that makes Jim so god damned special. He groans, rolls to the side of his bed, picks up the ringing phone on the nightstand, his voice gorgy with sleep, “Yeah?”
“Seb,” a choked cry, “it’s so cold, Seb, so cold.”
“Oh my god, Jim, what have you done now?” He gets out of bed franticly, throws on his clothes as fast as he can while holding his phone in the other hand.
“I drank it all,” his voice cracks, “I found it and I drank it all.”
He rushes out the door, runs to his car, “What did you drink? Shit, you got to stop doing this man!”
He doesn’t hear a reply immediately; he panics, but forces himself to calm down when he hears muffled sobbing. “I don’t know, it was just there. Seb, am I going to die?”
“No, not if I can help it,” he gets into the car, slams the door and kicks the gear in drive. He doesn’t ask where Jim is – the man has tons of houses, Sebastian finds out during all the time he has spent with him – he knows which one Jim always chooses to die at. It’s always the same house, the rented apartment, over viewing the sea. Jim had once said that it’s because of the horizon, “I want to go there Seb, to the horizon, to eternity.”
“Don’t, Seb, please.”
“You can’t leave me you selfish prick!”
A whine, “You’re selfish for wanting to keep me alive too.”
“Well we’ll both be selfish then.”
Sebastian knocks on the door, no answer, figures, always never was when Jim was like this. Probably didn’t even have the strength to open it if he wanted to, all drugged up. But he always knocks anyway, a sign of respect. He kicks the door down after, the apartment looked empty.
For a brief moment, his heart skips a beat, what if this time Jim went to another house instead? There wouldn’t be enough time – he would be dead – but then he spots the man, lying on the floor behind the couch. He heaves a sigh of relief as he kneels down beside Jim, presses a finger to his neck, and feels a pulse.
“Jim, it’s okay, I’m here now, it’s alright,” he holds the man close to his chest; he needed to warm him up.
A soft gasp, and he feels a hand clutching lightly at his sleeve, devoid of any strength, “You’re so warm, Seb.”
Sebastian sighs, carries the man into the washroom. He’s done this countless of times to know exactly what to do. He pushes his fingers into the man’s mouth, massaging the back, urging him to puke. Jim’s gag reflex was almost non-existent, almost, so it takes a while. But he finally does it; he pulls out his fingers from the wet mouth, holding Jim’s hair back with his other hand as the man vomits into the toilet bowl.
Jim looks at him with puffy eyes, red from crying. His lips stained with bile, his face pale. “Let’s get you cleaned up, yeah?” Sebastian asks, but Jim doesn’t answer. He always doesn’t, because he faints soon after.
Sebastian is then left to undress Jim by himself, get the man into the shower, rinse off the sweat and puke, then get him into a clean pair of clothes. He then carries the man into the bedroom, places him gently on the bed.
He must be crazy, to put up with this. He must be. Because who else would willingly subject themselves to taking care of a psychopath? A brilliant psychopath, his mind reminds him, and he smiles. Brilliant – Jim was definitely brilliant in so many ways that he couldn’t even describe and put into words.
He strokes a hand through the man’s hair, hums a soft tune, Jim can’t hear it, and it’s for the best. He knows that Jim would mock him otherwise, so these suicide attempts were the only time he could do this without fear of how Jim might react. He could never predict how Jim would react to anything, the man was so changeable, and that’s just one reason why Sebastian was so interested in him.
Jim looks so beautiful then, eyes closed, lips slightly parted, wearing the outfit that Sebastian chose for him – just the way he liked Jim – hell, he looked peaceful even. Like an angel. Sebastian scoffs at that thought; Jim would never want to be compared to a supernatural creature.
He gets into the bed with Jim, pulls the man close. He wraps his arms around Jim protectively, adjusts their positions so that Jim’s head was snuggled up against his chest. Placing a kiss to the man’s forehead, he falls asleep as well, because he knows that Jim would want him here when he wakes up, just to shout at him and punch him for saving his life, yet again.