Yesterday's alcohol reeking in his brain. Emptied tobacco leaves on the table. Scavenging should help Nark to find something which can be lit and smoked.
Numbness, the only feeling that he is sure, he is capable of. It won't be like any other day. Yet, he is a little worried about the masks. Will they betray him for once and all?. His usual equipment set is touch wood. The SW1911, his companion for over five years now, is safe under his bed. He can't do without it, to give the finishing touch to his work. He can faintly remember the screams of his client's prey; not that it bothers him, but he needs the memories to carry on the next day's work. He has nothing to do with them except that they help him to earn money. Try to kill them without pain, that is it!
He keeps just enough money for a decent living, nothing more - A bottle of black rum, with roasted chicken, one shot of crack and 40 cigarettes. The rest is set aside for those who love it more than anyone else, the gambling dens and the whorehouses.
He prepared himself for the next day, the toughest day of his life. The client, let us call her Deme, is a hard nut to crack. He had been proud of his ability to analyze and understand his clients, but no luck with her. The moment she started talking, her sharp features dissolved into molten flesh. Her cheeks were red; surprisingly her eyes were innocent and radiant. She had a smile which reminded Nark of himself and his childhood. She took out a photograph and a flash drive, with still and moving images of the target, his routine was meticulously explained. Her intellectual ferocity kept Nark on his feet. Everything was finalized, a cheque was placed in the name of his favorite woman, Napa. By the time he finished studying it, Deme was gone.
He played the tapes and studied the target. "This is easy." But, there was an unarming look on his face, a certain ugliness which yearned for life. He seemed happy with his family and his work, but again ,why bother ? Respect him just for the fact that he is your source of money, money which Napa will spend for the next two weeks.
He will do it differently, this time. He won't use the masks. He would want to see the face while it took its last breath. The scared expression which drove him to use the masks; he never wanted to see their mutilated faces or manifestations of their deepest fears. He didn't want to let himself be known that a part of his soul was being killed.
No! he shouted, he didn't want to delay it further, putting on his best clothes, the holster under his blazer. He arranged his tie, checked his favorite gun, lit a cigarette and tiptoed to the mirror without any of his masks