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Shadow Fall
Cain 3-A
© 2022 James LaFond
Union Station, Portland, Oregon, Nightfall, last Thursday Late
“Of a new world,
and of a new kind of creature to be created,
according to an ancient prophecy or report in Heaven,
for that angels were long before this miserable creation
was the opinion of many ancient fathers.”
-John Milton, 1668, from The Argument, Paradise Lost
Limber Shoop, up from LA, by way of Tacoma to wash drugs and run bitches in Portland, normally had better things to do than wait two hours for a phat bitch that up and got fat so that he could only charge chumps half of what she used to bring. But this bitch was bringing his money on the overdue train—better be bringing his cash or there would be hell to pay. Standing out front—in case shit went sideways—Kingman Tweak at the wheel around the corner towards the bus yard and up the street, Limber was ready to leave all of that if it looked like she had messed up and got caught up with the law.
Mia had been pretty once, and was still good for blowing the whole crew on New Year’s Eve when the lines were being blown. But you never knew when that bitch would up and do something stupid. But, that was the bitch he had—and she stopped texting at 2:13 AM. It was now 5:54 PM! What was left of his LA stash had gotten on that train yesterday morning in the leopard skin carry-on of a bitch who would throw hands with a cop over the mere tone of his voice.
She had done worse than that, or maybe, better, depending on how things went down. She couldn’t help but brag herself up in her texts with ‘licky’ smiley faces, that “MeeMee still gots it!” Mia had taken it on her own initiative to seduce an Amtrak station attendant, actually having full on sex with him in the baggage claim. She had reasoned on her own initiative and went ahead with the air-brained [0] scheme when unable to contact him because of the dead zone that was Jack London Station, that the train people would just be scanning tickets on the platform, not the train. So she did the fat negro on duty and got a seat slip without a ticket. So she reasoned, that if a “cash sniffin’ dawg smelt dat monay” she would not be connected to it “by a dock-you-mint.”
Limber saw enough holes in this dumb bitch plan to drive that train through. And, she WAS found out by a conductor, proving that people who sucked dick for a living should not make crucial business decisions. But The Man smiled on her, when she convinced the conductor that caught her to take her aside, to a private area, and she blew him, not once, not twice, but three times, shoving viagra down his throat with her wicked tongue so that she could totally own the guy.
Limber was hanging out by the Amish Jews in their funny hats so that he wouldn’t stick out too much, in case Mia was getting walked off with the cops. Then it occurred to him, that Mia either got nabbed by the train cops, of that bitch might have cut out on him with the conductor when the crew changed in Sacramento!
‘I bet that bitch took my cash and already has that white man’s debit card!’
‘Damn, I shouldn’t have given her shit about getting fat and cut back on her dick-commission—bitch done got herself a sugar daddy I bet—why she was braggin’ that up.’
“Oh, I’m gonna kill dat bitch!” Limber snarled under his breath as more and more passengers started coming out: weird Amish Jews, lowdown white folk, some beaners with babies, beaners with job bags, a couple well off white folks, a negro or two, and not one big, fat, black bitch with a three foot wide ass and hoop earrings that you could put your fist through.
The train pulled off. Most of the people left, except the Amish Jews, and, and, and! ...some stupid, scared little white girl, not prime age, but still workable. The white people with money had taken all the cabs and Ubers and this bitch was biting her knuckles and bouncing her little heels...Limber’s high time preference and instinct for gauging vulnerability already had him headed over to the girl before he had made full decision.
His best Uncle Tom face painted on with a watermelon eating grin, Limber was up under the eves of that train station where the girl was shivering under some strange coat with no arms, like a Batman cape for keeping people halfway warm, holding just a pink purse—no luggage at all—beeming ‘Down on my luck and desperate for a friend!’
“Miss, miss. Look, I’m a hacker, you know, an illegal cab operator and these ubers and cabs won’t let me park up on here. I had a rider scheduled, supposed to get off this train, and she ain’t showed.”
She seemed numb, “Have you asked in the station for her, sir?”
‘Oh, this bitch is somewhat wary, been around.’
“Yes, miss, I have. And they told me that there was no such person ticketed on that train.”
The woman then looked at him with wide eyes, and her little chin dropped and she began to drift away, not even looking for cars, almost getting clipped by a black Jeep, “Miss, be careful, watch out for these Portland drivers!” he hollered after her in fake concern as she hurried off like a frightened little girl, obviously with no one who cared enough about her to pick her up in the center of this shithole city.
Out came the I-Phone to call his wheel man.
“Yeah, Limber?”
“Dat fat bitch done jumped da train. But ain’ all lost. Dare a fine lille white bitch wit green Oakland A’s hat, a lady homeless blanket ‘bout da neck, en a banged up pink purse commin’ exactly yo way, loogin’ herself fo a bus. She ain’ got nobody—grab dat bitch en we’ll train ‘er up on yo dick. Meet me behind da campers.”
“Ooof, ooof!” wolfed his wheel man, and cut the call as Limber walked briskly towards the three broken down tan and beige campers, a meet-up sight they had agreed upon two blocks to his right. The girl was off and running towards the bus yard and the homeless tents.
‘It’s better this way. I won’t be on camera at this Fedded-up joint walkin’ off with no disappeared bitch.’
When it came to bagging bitches, Limber Shoop had absolute confidence in Kingman Tweak. Tweak was not just his wheel man, but his partner, his only friend over all of his life, really. Kingman was a bad dark-skinned negro from Tacoma who came to LA ten years ago when they were still teens. Now, they had a five man crew, twice as many associates, and were running bitches and shit, guns and even weed from looted weed shops that didn’t have the sense to fortify they’re store front so that two heavy hitters could not just back a van with four greedy thieves in the back into that bitch and clean it out…
And so worked the mind of Limber Shoop, charting his successes and gauging the potential of his current crew to achieve in the future: like tomorrow, the next day, or maybe even next week… as he sauntered towards the camper, with some weird-ass Lurch of an Amish Jew hobbling after him.
Limber put his hands in his hoody and palmed his Nine, as he looked over the shoulder of his white hoody at one weird white man, who, on one hand, seemed to be following him, but on the other hand was limping on a cane and strapped into a big-ass backpack.
‘If fucking Lurch turns the corner, behind this hillbilly hut on wheels, it’s on!’
Limber was now behind the first of the three campers, parked on a lot that backed on some building that was not in use—like a government building where people had left to go home, next to an actual parking lot full of nice cars. The tweakers had an engine hoist behind the middle camper, where three of them worked on taking the engine out of a stolen car next to a camp fire on the asphalt. [1]
The three campers were parked in a crescent, forming something of a perimeter that Limber did not want to drift into. He wanted to skirt that meth-zone, those tweakers were busy, didn’t even sleep, always with eyes on.
Limber did not want to mix with these guys. They were white and this guy might be with them. So he made left into the opening where Kingman could pick him up, as he’d be pulling in right where Lurch was following him now. This was it, if Lurch followed him into the small open lot, then it was on.
‘Go to your peeps, Lurch. You don’t want none of this!’
Lurch did not follow Limber’s original right turn and approach the tweaker mechanics, but followed Limber into the lot.
Limber stopped and turned and the man clattered on big hard boots towards him, working that cane like a kayak paddle. This lit a fire in Limber:
Limber: “What, motherfucker? What?!”
Lurch: “Hold!” spoke the man in a cancerous voice full with some weird thunder of command, not loud, but needle like sure.
Limber: “Hold the fuck back, Lurch! The Adam’s Family is canceled!”
Lurch: “I ask parlay.”
The tweakers were paying real big attention.
Limber: “Bitch, yo ass might be big. But you old en yo shit is fucked up. I will not even waste a cap in yo ass—I will whoop yo ass! Now back the fuck off!”
The man said in a low level tone as he lurched forward on clacking legs and ringing boots, “Vile brigand, on your guard!”
The confidence and size of the man squashed Limber’s boast and he drew his Nine, racked the slide, turned it to the side in both hands, and popped off a round right into the chest.
The crack of the shot was accented by a ringing ping. But the man kept coming in his awkward, lurching stride.
Limber squeezed the trigger forever, but that only lasted for two more shots, both hitting the man and pinging off with sparks. Then his prized Nine, which he cleaned every New Year’s Eve, right before running two clips through it, whether it needed cleaning or not, jammed up on him.
‘Traitor piece of Italian shit—I knew I should have got a Sig!’
The man was towering over him and Limber pistol whipped him across the face, knocking half that pasty nose off and away, blood splashing, but not enough for a gone off nose.
‘What da fuck?’
But a forensic question on the effect of his blow in no way diminished Limber Shoop’s confidence in violent action. He came up with a wicked left shovel hook, going to the body like no body, cracking the lower rib, which he could feel give.
‘Take that, Cracker Jack!’
Then the big old cracker slammed a hand that was unnatural hard and heavy into Limber’s chest, a fist that felt like a sledge hammer should.
Limber fell back, slow-like, from that fist.
Before he hit the asphalt he stopped breathing.
By the time he hit the asphalt full panic over not being able to breathe had set in.
When he hit the asphalt he heard something crack, like a broken broom stick used to stab rats in an LA alley.
He could not feel anything below his neck.
He could feel blood running up into his throat.
‘My shit is fucked up,’ dispassionately narrated the inner poet of his only hero—himself.
Above him gathered a constellation of pale gods, the monster in the hat and coat and three grunge-made tweakers who were all looking down on him as if from some infinite heaven.
-0. Not a typo. Hair does not think, but airheads do, disastrously.
-1. The author witnessed this exact scene on a main street, a mile east from this location in March 2022, under less cover.
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