Rated M for stong language, drug and alcohol use, blood and Gore, sexual themes and content, and physical and emotional violence. Don't say I didn't warn you...
The day was overcast, as was his mood, as Darien sat staring out the tinted windows in the backseat of a huge black Mercades. The car would stand out anywhere, but especially in this part of town, and people were already taking notice.A few rough looking young men in baggy jeans and t-shirts crossed from the other side of the street to get a better look.
Darien knew the type, as did his driver, who rolled down his own window just long enough to disposess them of any ideas they might have. Just a quick glimpse was effective, and they scurried off to whatever hole they came from.
Darien paid him no further mind and turned back to the object of his attention. It was a small storefront wedged between a struggling bakery and a boarded-up hardware store. But despite it's dreary surroundings, it was vibrant.
Dozens of colors, hues, and shades clashed in the flower shop windows, but not unpleasantly. Whoever had arranged them had clearly put a lot of talent and effort into arranging the display for just the right effect.
Darien had been here before, though he'd never gone in. First years that felt like a lifetime ago, and more recently over the last few months. The driver looked back and opened his mouth as if to say something, but a good look at the expression on the bosses face stopped him before he started.
Darien himself looked down at his hands to find them shaking, ever so slightly, and clenched his fists tight to stop it. Too tightly, as pain blossomed where his well-manicured nails dug into his palms, very nearly sharply enough to draw blood. He took the pain without complaint, barely so much as gritting his teeth against it. It served it's purpose, helping him focus.
Suddenly, almost angrily, he threw open the door and stepped into the street and slammed it behind him, drawing wary glances out of the windows of the crammed-together apartment blocks on the other side of the street. The owners of those eyes were surely relieved when he headed the other way, towards the flower shop
The tall, dark-haired man stopped in front of the door to compose himself, carefully smoothing the creases out of the dark tailored suit fitted perfectly to him, adjusting the blood-red tie he wore about his neck, and checked the time on the silver Rolex on his right wrist against the scheduled hours hand-written on the sign on the door.
It was a little after Ten AM, the place had been open for about an hour, but probable not very busy yet, if it ever was. Idly, he wondered if it was possible she had written those words, years ago. Unlikely, stores changed hours, signs wore out...he realized he was stalling, and with a sharp, uncharicteristic intake of breath before stepping forward and pushing open the door.
There was a single, crisp chime of a bell when the latch opened, alerting the shops sole occupant of a customer's arrival.