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“Et in Arcadia Ego”
story by Mabel Harper & Cassidy Webb
written by Cassidy Webb
“Time to give up the dream, Lenny.”
Caren stalked toward her cornered quarry, flipping her balisong with a lazy motion of her right hand, rainwater smacking with each heavy tread of her Docs.
Lenny had crammed his stocky body as far as he could into the corner of the alley. His belly was visibly expanding and contracting with each breath. His round face glistened with rain and sweat, his small brown eyes switching this way and that.
“Seriously.” Caren sighed, snapped the knife shut and pocketed it in her long leather jacket. “Jig’s up. Let’s do this the easy way for once, huh?”
“Come on, Neneng,” Lenny whined, in his faintly accented English. “How ’bout you just let ol’ Lenny go free…just this once? For old times’ sake.”
Caren slid the dampening bracers from the adjacent liner pocket of her jacket. “No way, man.” She jerked her head. “Let’s go.”
Lenny cowered, blinking at her—then popped a sparkling capsule out of his right sleeve, crushed it with a grunt, and flung its contents in her face.
“Fucking—!” Caren threw her arm up to cover her eyes, too late. A disembodied diaphanous giggle grazed the air as an explosion of flares and misty shapes filled her vision…
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