Wednesday, June 15, 2005

The Cycle of Rage

Night over the city.

As the last of the sun's scintillating rays were smothered by cloud and dusk the lights of the bustling downtown flared bright in answer, as if defiant to the coming of darkness. The hustle of habitation continued even as the sky darkened to a dull indigo. Night fell, and it seemed that nothing had changed. There was no lapse in the buzz, the hum, of fervent activity, the pulse of urbanity.

Downtown, where a warm wind still persisted in the cavernous valleys of glinting skyscrapers. The ataxia of activity was at its most hectic here. It helped little that there was a minor commotion in the walkways.

This commotion was a certain heavily garbed personage. Oblivious to the surrounding bedlam and the brief, incredulous stares of other pedestrians, he waded his way through the crowd. Swathed in jackets, a wide brimmed hat a few decades out of fashion, and dark glasses which hid his eyes in murky half-light, it was no wonder that this strange, comically attired character was subjected to such aporetic attention.

Little did they know that boiling within that man was a deep, monstrous, uncontrollable rage, and it was waking to the silent, brief derision. The man strode on. His comparatively large bulk and strange attire were instrumental in clearing a path for himself. That, and the growing sense of the man's impending rage, burgeoning, ever more palpable in the semiconscious tunnel-visions of surrounding pedestrians.

Finally stumbling his way out of the thick sea of humanity the man headed off to a side street. Relief puckered his unseeable brow. The red hot demon hovering at the edge of his consciousness cooled, and faded away. He flexed fingers that he hadn't known were clenched. Loosened his hold on gritted teeth. Stopped the continuous, unconscious torrent of curses he was muttering through those teeth. And walked on.

Halfway through his sojourn through the more decrepit areas of downtown he heard steps falling in with his own.

"It would help if you didn't wear those clothes, you know."
The man barely turned his head. "Shove off."
"That preposterous hat should go off first. Nobody wears those things anymore."
The red heat started to throb in the recesses of his mind. "Which part of 'shove off' don't you understand, Runt?"
"Those two words ain't in my dictionary."
With a casual swipe the man struck a blow on his companion's stomach, sweeping him off the road. Runt skidded and struck his head on the kerb. Momentarily stunned, he lay there a few moments. Finally, just as the man was about to turn a corner, he bellowed, "Wait! Where're you going anyway?"
"Where else would make me so damned irritated?"
Runt stared. "Anger management?"
Enraged, the big man turned. "Whatever in hell gave you that idea, Runt?"
"Hey, relax. I...I was just, er, joking, you know..."

The big man turned and walked off. His anger was not assuaged by the fact that he was getting so predictable nowadays. And by the money spent so far on something that never worked, especially because everyone now looked at him with apprehension. Another thing that made him angry.

Behind, Runt sighed. He often wondered at the big man. And why hid himself to disguise his identity when going for such classes.

He would probably still get angry anyway.

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