Maria waited over an hour at the backstreet motel for Jason but couldn’t wait any longer. Throwing the key on the counter, she walked out, wrapping her coat tight around her, shielding her from the sudden downpour.
The main street was deserted, the only sound the clipping of her heals.
A car rumbled behind her, slowing down. The tinted window slid down and Maria smiled, hiding her surprise at seeing her brother.
“What are you doing in this neighbourhood?” he asked.
“Seeing a friend,” she replied, her story already prepared. If Carlos knew she was seeing Jason, he would flip. As head of the family, he decided on who she should date.She climbed in next to him.
“Rita, she’s having problems with Zak.” She stared out the window, the town lights slowly disappearing in the distance. It was silly feeling nervous being with her brother but she knew what he was capable of, had seen him blow a man’s brains out for just looking at her.
The car drove slowly around winding roads, deeper into the desert and Maria felt uneasy, not because they were going completely wrong way but because she hated being around when Carlos did business, reminding her how feared he was.
The car stopped and Maria saw another car ahead where two men stood, the headlights flooding a usually dark desert.
“Get out,” Carlos ordered. She did as she was told despite the rain. Her hair whipped around her face but she saw, through tangled strands, a man kneeling between the two men.“Come,” Carlos said. She followed him, trying not to stumble in her Louis Vuittons. “Do you know this man?” Carlos asked as one of the men pulled back the kneeling man’s hair, revealing a bloodied, battered face. She stifled a gasp, biting down on her quivering lip as Jason was thrown to the floor. “I asked do you know this man?”
She shook her head, unable to speak. She watched Jason crawl back up. He was swiftly kicked in the stomach, groaning as he curled up on the ground. She inhaled sharply, holding her breath, trying in vain not to let her feelings escape and betray her.
“So you do know him?”
She nodded, looking into Jason’s eyes. She saw no pain. His eyes spoke to her, silent words of love. It looked like he was mouthing something to her, words of love, she was sure and a faint smile passed her lips.
A loud bang vibrated through her, rattling her bones, echoing through the night. Jason tumbled to the floor, blood oozing from a neat hole in the middle of his forehead. Screaming, she ran to him, cradling the lifeless body in her arms, tears streaking her face, his blood smearing her skin.
“He was a cop!” Carlos bellowed above the wind. “A fucking cop! He was only seeing you to get to me you stupid bitch!” He threw a shovel at her feet. “Now dig!”
Maria obeyed, her heart empty, her body shattered. She knew Jason was a cop, that’s why she didn’t tell Carlos. But Jason wasn’t interested in him. He truly loved her. He didn’t even know she was Carlos’ sister.
Exhausted, Maria fell to the ground as the men pushed Jason in the shallow hole. She watched as the desert sands covered his beautiful face until they patted the sands down and walked away.
Just Carlos and Maria remained. Even the rain stopped as he stared down at his little sister, a traitor. There were no words and Maria knew he would banish her, disown her. But she didn’t care. Nothing mattered now Jason was gone. Carlos would do her a favour, freeing her from his empire of terror.
She heard the distinct click of his gun and looked up, gazing down the barrel. She didn’t see Carlos’ tears. She didn’t feel afraid. She saw Jason, when they first met. It was her last thought as a bullet ripped through her heart. Maria slumped on Jason’s grave.
Carlos calmly walked back to his car, he didn’t look back once. Darkness descended and the desert was at peace once more.
Written for Jeff Tsuruoka's Mid Week Blues Buster over at the TsuruokaFiles.
Here's the music; pure instrumental, inspirational and gorgeous. x