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Some Like It Red Hot

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" –the current temperature in L.A. is 96º Fahrenheit."


Heat is good; warmth is good. Warmth denotes movement. Movement generates friction. Friction means action. Action requires force. Force necessitates intent. Intent entails thought. Thought is life.


Cogito ergo sum. Cogito cogito ergo cogito.


But heat is good. L.A. is heat. L.A. is—hot. It's hot, not heat. L.A. being heat would mean it was somehow– The temperature is high on the scale of measurement. Hot city. Happening City. It's a hotspot.


Heat is– heat is good. He likes heat. He likes it. . . hot. Some do. Some Like It Hot.


Skip to: Female-Flight-Attendant-No-Longer-Stewardess, 12 o'clock and closing. Whisky. Lift of the hand, move the arm up and here she comes.


"Yes, sir?"


Whisky, and the obligatory niceties. Thank you. Please. That would be miraculous of you. Turn of the head, crane behind to chase her with, Ice, too! Sweet kid. 30-something male Caucasian across the aisle exhibits strange facial expression.


Nice weather we're having, isn't it? How 'bout that organized sporting team, eh? Whoo-boy!


No response. Woman swoops down from out of nowhere. Oooh, whisky! Delightful, fräulein. Cherish it forever.


Skip to: airplane disembarkation. Bit drowsy. Whisky, that trickster-faced harlot!


Ah, crowds. Moo, moo. Nice tie, buddy. Sensing a pattern. Everyone's got that same strange look today. Maybe it's a bad day. Terrible tragedy. Anniversary of death, no coffee, mass feline suicide, the real heartbreaking headlines.


Weird looks are his ducklings, tagging along at his heels at he goes through check. Bag with a handle. No. No. No. No. No. No. . . no. Yes? Oh– no. No. Nooooo. No. No. No. 'Scuse me, ma'am, I believe that's my-- oh, nope! No. No. No. Eureka! No! Wait! No. No– yes! Ha-ha! Gotcha, you rascal! Sorry. Pardon. Man with a bag, comin' through!


Theirs was a short interconnectedness. Memorize these faces. Chances are, they will never see one another again. Parting is such sweet sorrow, especially from the man who honestly should have showered before boarding. Terrible brand of cologne soaked into a shirt does not equate cleanliness. L.A. is hot. That man's poor taxi driver.


Couldn't pay him enough to– Sign! Woman with a sign.


And a gun. Ah, but there's a badge, too, so it probably evens out.


Walk up and flick it. Bet that guy's an ass.


"Excuse me?"


Sounds like a stupid name. First part's all right, sure, but the second? Shake of the head.


"Look, buddy, we're cops and we're here on official business, so just move it along. We don't have time for your– "


"Does a name shape the person, or does the man shape the name?"


Turn and make eye contact. Like Red Hots, cinnamon, sneaks up and burns his mouth, but somehow he always forgets that part. Pops 'em in by the handful and then sits there fanning his mouth and drooling. Like the sun, always reflecting the red, the heat, the warmth, flashing it everywhere. Red hair, blue eyes—red and blue. Like a police car! No wonder he's a cop. Couldn't be anything else, looking like that.


Who said anything about it being a man's name?


White, white, white. White teeth, white skin, White Hat. Good guy. Bad guys can't smile like that.


"Not too many women named David." Here comes the hand. "Charlie Crews. This is my partner, Reese. It's nice to meet you, David. Or do you prefer Cop-Speak?" Nod of the head. "Creegan."


Can't stop that smile. Burns as it peeks through again. Red Hots! Forgot how it felt, tasting something like that.


No, seeing, seeing something like that. Can't– can't taste a smile.


Reach for the offered hand, grasp it, squeeze, shake. Crews is living cinnamon.


David really loves him already. Forgot what that felt like, too.


"This is Creegan?" Reese. Shock. Disgust. Missing the snort of derision, but otherwise: right on schedule.


 Chuckle. Play it up. Branca, L.A. version.


Only Monday through Friday. Weekends, it's Droopy the Clown.


"It's Tuesday." Derision! No snort, but scrunching of the nose works just as well.


"Too bad." Follow as cinnamon Crews walks, Reese right beside him. Reese's Pieces. Reese is in pieces. "I love balloon animals."


Candy partners. The dangerous one's not the one most people will think it is. Reese bites and barks.


Cinnamon's what burns, what shocks, surprises. At least, with David it is.


It's okay, though. Gotta love the heat! Means you're alive.


"What?" It's the weird look again! What is with the weird loo–  


"Heat comes from friction."


Crews turns around. Reese keeps walking.


David is stopped dead in his tracks. Wait, no. No. No. No.


Not dead. Take a step forward. Move. Movement generates friction. Friction means action. Action requires force. Force necessitates intent. Intent entails thought. Thought is life.


Or from cinnamon. Gets me every time!


White Red Hots. Crews smiles, burns behind his icy blue eyes, burns David. Red means danger. Blood is red; fire is red; love. . . is red.


Red Hots. He likes heat. Heat is good. It burns, but–  


If he can burn then that means he's alive.


"You like fruit, David?"


And Crews is red, but he's also blue, so it probably evens out.


Love it! Can't get enough. You got some on you? Are you carrying, Crews? Assault with a deadly kiwi–