On The Sin-Tax Bill (Poem)

I remember the good ol’ days where cigarettes were cheap,
I could smoke a set of sticks, a pack a day, a week,
I could keep drinking from those bottles till it made me weak,
Stick after bottle was good, but now, I have to speak.

Why DID the government go and tax our vice?
Is it because they want people to be healthy, clean and nice?
Is it cause they want people to spend less money and be wise?
Nah, I think it’s cause they just want to earn off of the public’s demise.

If they wanted us all to quit, they would’ve stopped selling this sh*t,
They would’ve stopped selling cigarettes to both adults and kids,
They would’ve banned every single Marlboro stick,
But that’s not good for their income because tobacco is BIG.

If they wanted us all to quit, they would’ve stopped selling the juice,
No more drunken driving cases where people file lawsuits,
No more bottles, no more cans of fermented roots,
No more alcohol content having people make loot.

It’s tax, and it’s for revenue to make the country last,
But instead it helps them do better when they reel in all the cash,
To spend more consumer money when sprucing up their stash,
And they laugh with all they get from the bottles and ash.

They say everyone’s taxed so it isn’t unfair,
But with the amount that they steal, they really just couldn’t care.
They can afford it everyday and they won’t even share,
Hell, they go to work smoking, drunk, and unprepared.

So raise a finger drinkers, smokers to another government scam,
Taking away the simple things is just a part of their plans,
And when we think that we have everything at the tip of our hand,
They go and lie every elections about a promised land.

(c) Anachronic Works 2013

Three Steps Below

STEP 1: Motivate

“It was a dark 1998 night as I recall; nearing the December nativity scene, filled with little children playing around the parks and watching out for Santa’s sleigh or simply the food in their homes. A nice sweet meal you know, Noche Buena, laid out for the family, groups of people flocking to one family member’s house just to eat some of that sweetened Christmas ham.

“I’d remembered wishing for a bike for Christmas. Not just any bike, but the bike that I’d wanted so much; The Stumpjumper. We were well to do, and honestly, I doubt I would not have received my bike; I was a good little boy, mommy. I was good this year. Nevertheless it was something straight out of a movie, what happened, that fateful Christmas Eve.”

Croix Flores said, lighting a cigarette. The rich smoke dissipating before him, the slight hints of dried smells reminded him that he was smoking Marlboro’s. He hated them; one could see it in his eyes as they pierced mine through the smoke.

“Fuck. Ya have a Pall Mall, there, bro?”

“Here. Now, shut up about the cigarettes and tell me more about your fucked up shit, you goddamned son of a bitch.” I said, tossing him my pack of cigarettes. I’d already lit one up. It soothed me as I continued to listen to his testimony. We were on record.

“Alright. Now, where was I?” He said, placing the cigarette conveniently on the crease in the ashtray on the edge of the table. There was a glass of clear, cold water resting next to it, untouched.

“Christmas Eve.” I replied impatiently, blowing smoke from my nostrils like a bull, ready for the red flag.

“Oh, right. Anyhoot, it happened. A riot, for one of those labour unions tore through the small suburbia where I lived, just outside the streets of Paranaque. People were on an inhuman rampage, for some petty thing I can barely remember. The blood filled the streets, people were wailing, people were crying, people were dying right before our very doorstep. My father, bless his soul, had ordered all the doors locked. The maids, or as we in my homeland would call them, “Ya-ya’s”, followed the order, however, had failed to secure the back door in time. The riot had spilled into our house. My father took his double-barrel shotgun and began to fire at the rioters wielding knives and the local version of machetes; the “Itak”. It wasn’t enough. They’d gotten into our kitchen, and they had picked up one of the plastic chairs, flinging it at my father, causing him to drop the shotgun. They began beating him, and the others began harassing my mother.

“I was only seven. I’d picked up a kitchen knife. In a rush of anger and fury, I’d stabbed one in the back; the one that was on top of my mother. He turned around to face me, shock surging through his body. A deafening cry came from his lips and I silenced it by stabbing his gut. He’d later be declared dead on arrival by the ambulance that arrived through our doors. They saw and began to approach me; that was when my father, with no one left to hold him down, picked up the gun, and shot the one nearest me. The blood hit my face, and it felt great. The warm liquid of life felt good against my face. The others scrambled at the sound of the oncoming police car’s “wang-wang” as they called it. My father lay there, resting, relieved that the family was safe. My mother embraced me tightly.

“Now, you may say that’s fucking irrelevant, by your standards but let me tell you something.” He said pointing a pair of fingers at me, his cigarette lodged between them. His other hand was cuffed to the metal table, which was screwed to the floor.

“It stirred something in me, man. It really did; all the gore. I needed it. I wanted it. They’d kept me on pills for that, but somewhere along the line, I discovered cigarettes. A cheaper alternative, but it was good enough. Halfway through college, another riot came. This time, my parents never made it out alive. It was during the elections, and that was when I began killing again. I’d killed seven people in that riot. Someone from a local gang called “True Brown Style” saw my potential, and since I had nowhere to go, I accepted the offer. I was paid for my services, and soon enough, I left them because others needed me on international shores. The pay was higher of course, but the jobs were more complex, just the way I liked it. It gave me a professional sense of myself, a philosophical and necessary job in any society of humans, regardless of time or place. I became a PMC, in essence, but more profound; an assassin.

“You remember the 2016 elections for your country? I was the one that killed Sarah Palin. I’d gutted her 20 miles off the eastern seaboard, letting her innards spill into the sea. She was in shock, and I tossed her near-lifeless body into the pits of the ocean. I was paid by the millions for that job, and of course, I had a crew of 7 with me; all of them working menial jobs, right under the world’s noses. Take it from me, you’ll never find them.” He said, stubbing out his cigarette.

“Trust me, Flores. We will. We found you, didn’t we?” I replied, flicking my cigarette butt at him.

“I wanted you to. I need you to deliver a message.” He said calmly in his seat. I’d walked out of the room, a slight tinge of fear in my gut. Going over to the other side, where some of my fellow officers were observing, I placed my hands on my hips.

“They’d want him back in action; his employers would definitely not let him go. Sarah Palin with 7 others, that’s got to be a new world record in criminal study.” I said, feeling up my Ruger SR40.

“Yep. I want him on maximum security detail. He’d just admitted to the murder of Sarah Palin, and we’ve got him in our clutches for the death sentence.” My commanding officer, Ram Marino replied. I pulled up another cigarette pack from the nearby cupboard for electronics.

“Keep talking it out. We’ll get more what we need from him, and soon, we can pin most of the political murders to him. We’ve got the “circumstantial evidence” and he’d just given an open admission to the crime. We just need a few more, and the name of his employer.” The other man replied.

“Nightingale?” I asked.

“Yes.” They replied simultaneously.

STEP 2: Demonstrate

I took my leave, exiting their room. As I walked towards the door to Flores’ room, the janitor nodded to me, smiling as he began mopping the hallway floors. It was time. He passed me, dropping something in my hand; a small, handcuff key. I entered the room. I realized as I opened the door, that I nearly blew the whole operation out of proportion by mentioning the Tier 4 code “Nightingale”. I wasn’t supposed to know about it, I was only Tier 2. They could’ve been on to me from that very second. I’d never know.

“So, Flores. How do you suppose I bargain with you for more information? Say, a shortened sentence? I could give it to you, but I need that information. I could give you a day, maximum, since everyone else is after your head, bro. When will you come to a decision?” I asked, placing my hands on the table, near him. His hands reached mine, clasping them tightly as he replied with a faint whisper;

“Now.”

He took the key from the palm of my hand, and unlocked the cuffs. I’d swung open the door, and tossed him the silenced Colt 1911 Compact from my ankle holster. As I began attaching the silencer to my weapon, I saw that he’d caught the 1911, and without hesitation turned to shoot the two I’d spoken with in the adjacent room. The janitor had already pulled out his silenced Colt SCW, and began shooting suppressive fire down the hall with a 6 pack magazine bandolier slung across his back. He shot away from the stairwell, using the open door to our room as cover. Sure that the two in the opposite room were dead, he picked up the Pall Mall pack from the table.

Croix and I, using the janitor’s push-cart, which was modified with DragonSkin, had worked our way through towards the stairwell. He had fired all but the last bullet in his magazine, and I had already unloaded three magazines. The janitor had begun popping smoke grenades and switching places to cover for our retreat towards the stairwell. I had picked up the extra homemade Sten Mk2. silenced sub-machine gun, and began unloading the rounds down the hall. Flores had gotten the small tactical pack containing his change of clothes from below the place where the Sten was located. The janitor had taken a few hits, as planned. He wouldn’t receive his part of the cut, and the only way to certify Croix would get his money was to have me call our employers accordingly. We had begun our descent down the 9 floors.

The sounds of silenced guns were blazing above, in the smoky fury; the agents had begun to kill each other, thinking that they were killing a multitude of enemies. Somewhere on the fourth to the last flight of stairs, they’d realized their mistake and had begun to chase us down the stairwell.

STEP 3: Motivate Again

“You know, Croix, just a heads up. I’m giving up my job and good position for this. I know your employers pay you well, but they’re sure to pay me, right? We’re buddies, right?” I asked, as we bolted down the stairs, with me shooting at the oncoming agents; my former co-workers and friends.

“Yes, my friend. They’ll be sure to pay you as long as you follow your instruction package to the letter. With me, I don’t need to, since they know how I work. Your story is a different one… A completely different one.” He said, pulling another Pall Mall as he calmly, but briskly kept the pace. He changed his clothes with the small pack he took  from the push-cart.

As I turned around on our last flight of stairs, he reached into my pocket for the lighter, as he said, and took it. Walking down a few more steps I noticed something was odd. My pocket felt oddly lighter than expected, and as I fired one last load of bullets from the magazine at the enemies above, I checked for my cell-phone and the last extra magazine.

I had turned to face him as he pointed the 1911 at the point-blank centre of my chest. He was holding my phone and the extra magazine. I pointed the Sten at him and he simply winked with his insanely happy grin in reply, pulling the trigger.

I fell to the ground, letting go of everything. With a .45cal bullet in my chest, pain began surging throughout every part of my body. I didn’t even notice the bone-breaking fall down the last flight of stairs. He’d walked calmly, reloading the Sten and firing it blindly at the agents above us. The shells hit my face and I’d blinked several times, adjusting to the surroundings. He stood above me, smoking the cigarette, flicking the ash at my open wound. He dropped the phone and crushed it under his boot.

“You fucking idiot!” I tried to scream, but my voice was coarse and wheezing.

“Now we’ll both never get paid for this. You wasted all our time, effort, and money, man!” I tried screaming at him as he put on the pair of contact lenses and the shades that were in the pack as well.

He checked the pack and found another 2 smoke grenades. Pulling the pin off of one, he tossed it upward, causing the smoke to disorient the agents once more. Checking the hidden pouch for another pistol, he found another 1911. Placing the extra magazine I had given him earlier in the pack, he calmly searched for the alcohol. Taking the bottle and spraying both our guns and my open wound, he lit everything up, including the bottle itself, with the lighter. I screamed as he stomped the flames on my chest out.

I rolled to the side, pain doubling in intensity. He snickered as he put the baseball cap, from the pack, on his head. Finally finishing up with the pseudo disguise, he began his descent out into the open world where a silver, DragonSkin covered, Mercedes was about to pass for us. With all the energy my torso could muster, I forced myself to utter the word; “Why?”

“You see, my friend, movies are movies and the nature of killing another human being is actually, very unpredictable. Even detectives have a hard time with every single case. Now, what you failed to see, with me, my friend, is this; “I do not kill for money, I kill for the thrill of killing, and that’s what makes a man like me, dangerous.” I never really did it for the money. I did it for the sake of doing it.” He said, tossing the empty gun at my feet and opening the door as he walked into the blinding sunlight of the open street, three steps below.

DISCLAIMER:

* Any references to real life people, places, things, and events are fictional and are for entertainment purposes only.

*  There is no intention to badmouth, infringe upon any rights, or give a bad reputation to anyone or anything (particularly cultures, ethnicities, and etc). This is just fiction, for entertainment.

For Kyle Flores, my close friend.

(c) Anachronic Works 2013