The Only Hope For Me Is You
The next morning my head was pounding and my stomach was tied in knots. I sat in one of the booths and put my head on the table. Everything felt as if it were spinning. The last thing I remember seeing last night was Cola leading Kobra into our room, after that I think Pony and I just finished the rest of the vodka. Dr. D was in the corner of the room, snoring lightly and Pony was still asleep in one of the booths, the empty bottle of vodka clutched to his chest.
I heard a door open and close quietly. I lifted my head to see Kobra slide into the booth across from me. I instantly saw the purple hickey on his neck and I couldn't help but notice him wince as he sat down. He looked tired, dark rings were under his eyes. He avoided my gaze and I could tell he was embarrassed. Why would he be embarrassed around me? He was free to sleep with whomever he wanted.
The silence between us was awkward so I broke it by clearing throat, “Good morning.” I mumbled.
Kobra looked up at me, “I'm sorry you had to sleep out here.” He stated.
I shrugged, “The booths aren’t too bad, especially when you drink as much vodka as Pony and I did,” I saw a small smile appear on his lips, after a few moment I spoke again,”So you and Cola huh? Are you two a thing?” I needed to know.
Kobra looked down at his hands, he scratched the back of his neck and let out a nervous cough, “Yes…no…I don't know really. He goes away for long periods of time and then when he does comes around he…I don't know.” Kobra shakes his head, “I don't know what we are.” He was uncomfortable, I felt bad for him…I ached to hold him in my arms, to tell him that it was okay.
I settled for simply nodding my head, not entirely sure how I was supposed to act. Kobra took a deep breath and slid out of the booth. Kobra’s shirt had ridden up a bit and my breath caught in my throat when I saw bruises in the form of fingers on his hips. He looked confused until he saw what I was looking at, he quickly pulled down his shirt, his mouth opened and closed, as if he wanted to say something. Instead he turned and walked out of the diner, I saw him walking towards the small garage that we kept the motorcycles and the Trans Am in.
I was so distracted by Kobra I didn't hear Ghoul enter the dining room, he tapped my shoulder and I jumped. “Hey man, are you okay?” He asked.
“Oh…yeah I'm fine. What's up?” I asked.
“Poison needs to talk with Dr. D today, so I wanted to know if you'd like to come with me to The Station?” I must've looked as confused as I felt because Ghoul continued, “Right you wouldn't know what The Station is…it's like a shopping center…for Killjoys. We actually just trade supplies because there is no currency out here.”
“Sure I'll go with you. I've got nothing better to do.” I said and Ghoul smiled.
A few minutes later I was sitting in the passenger seat of the Trans Am, Ghoul started the car and we left the diner. This was the first time I had left the diner since I first arrived, Ghoul turned on the radio and music blared throughout the small car.
“Yeah?” He asked turning down the volume a few notches.
“What do you think of Cola? You've known him a lot longer than I have.” I questioned, Ghoul looked over at me, he looked concerned.
“Why? Did he do anything to you?”
“No nothing like that...I'm just curious is all.” I wasn't lying, he didn't do anything to me…I was worried about Kobra though, those bruises and the way he was acting scared the shit out of me.
“Well he's a good Killjoy, a better shot than Kobra, and you don't see that very often.” Ghoul paused, as if planing his next words carefully, “But he has this weird obsession with Kobra, he looks at him as if he owns him or something. I know Poison doesn't approve of him very much.”
“Why does he allow Cola into the diner then?” I asked, Poison didn't seem like the forgiving type. Once you were on his bad side that was it, there was no going back.
“Dr. D trusts Cola, he thinks that Poison and I are overreacting. He thinks if Cola is mistreating Kobra than Kobra will say something himself.” Ghoul said, I could tell this conversation was upsetting him. I decided to change the subject, I had gotten my answer, and I had come to the conclusion that I definitely did not like Agent Cherri Cola.
"So how did you and Poison meet? Kobra told me that they found you…but that was it.” I asked, I heard Ghoul laugh.
“Typical Kobra, the man of few words,” Ghoul smiled, “But he isn't lying. Poison and Kobra found me about two weeks after the Pig Bombings. I was malnourished and had a nasty broken ankle that I had been walking on for days. The day they found me, I swear, that I thought I had died. Poison was so beautiful, he picked me off the ground and put me in the back of the Trans Am that they had stolen. When we got to the diner Poison carried me into the back room. They had to re-brake my ankle because it was healing improbably. Poison actually cried when they did it, it's one of the only times I've seen that man cry. He stayed with me every second until I was better. We knew it from the first time we saw each other that we were meant to be.” Ghoul stopped the car, I hadn't even noticed the big warehouse that was in front of me.
“How hadn't BL/ind's found this place? It's huge!” I gawked.
“They haven't found this location yet. It's only a matter of time before they find this place. It moves every few months.” Ghoul explained and we got out of the car. He grabbed a backpack from the trunk and we entered the warehouse.
The place had rows and rows of makeshift stands, Killjoys were selling and trading items all around me. I had never seen so many Killjoys before, the warehouse was loud, I could hear people talking and laughing. “Alright Poison wanted us to grab a couple of things,” Ghoul pulled out a small list from his pocket, “We need antibacterial, more bandages, a couple gallons of water and some cans of food.”
We set out on our mission, I was bewildered about the way the Killjoys worked. Ghoul traded a pair of old boots for antibacterial and bandages and six batteries for some food and water. We were walking around when I saw a pair of dark aviator sunglasses sitting on a table. I picked them up, Ghoul smiled at me,
“Those are cool.” He turned to the Killjoy running the stand, “I'll give you a wrench for them.” The Killjoy nodded, Ghoul gave him the tool.
“Great doing business with you.” The Killjoy smiled.
We walked out of the warehouse, “You didn't have to do that Ghoul. I don't want you wasting your supplies.”
Ghoul dismissed my comment with a wave, “Don't worry about it Jet, plus we have like eight wrenches in the garage.” I shook my head and put on my newly acquired sunglasses.
The drive back was a lot quieter than the drive there. Ghoul turned on the radio and hummed along to every song. I didn't have anymore questions that Ghoul could answer, so I just watched as the vast desert passed by me at 70 miles per hour. When we got back to the diner I saw that the van that Dr. D, Pony and Cola had shown up in was gone.
Poison was waiting out front, a cigarette in between his fingers. He smiled when he saw us pull up, he dropped the cigarette to the ground. Ghoul rushed out of the car and ran up to Poison, who enveloped him in his arms. Poison kissed Ghoul quickly and nipped at his earlobe. I smiled and grabbed the backpack with the new supplies from the backseat. I went into the diner and saw that Kobra wasn't in the main room, I decided to check our room to see if he was in there. I quietly opened the door and saw that Kobra was laying on his mattress. It didn't surprise me that he was sleeping, he had looked exhausted this morning. I noticed a thin white sheet that was barely covering Kobra’s body, I walked over to him and gingerly pulled the sheet over his entire body.
He mumbled something incoherently and curled up as tightly as his body would allow him, I could hear him breathing softly. This was the first time I had ever actually seen Kobra sleep. I couldn't help but smile, he looked adorable. His face was completely relaxed and I could see the childlike features that I normally don't see when he was awake. It was nice seeing him when he wasn't worried about something. He looked like the age he was supposed, because in reality he was just a kid. Hell we were all just kids. We were supposed to be worrying about college and what bar we were going to on Friday night. We weren't supposed to be risking our lives for the basic human right of the freedom to express oneself. The basic freedom of living.