by Bruno "The Golden Taipan" Watts, death dealer
The day after my family was butchered by a gang of Chinese gangsters, I went shopping. Guns were acquired, lots of guns. Also, grenades, knives, bombs, and a motorcycle that shoots rockets from its handlebars. Let me tell you, revenge plays merry hell with your Amex.
I don't deny it: I had a death wish. Clad in the cammo gear I filched from my commando unit before my dishonourable discharge (lousy sergeant, tell me not to run with scissors!), I disappeared into the jungle. I didn't even bother taking any food. My wrath would be sustenance enough.
That first night I laid traps around the gang's compound, snaring a couple of guards. As I applied electrodes to their testicles - more to pass the time than out of any practical need - I thought of my family, barely cold in their graves. I cursed the moon, the stars, God Himself. My revenge, when it came, would be sweet, the sweetest thing in the world - or so I assumed at the time.
Of course I know different now. The day I launched my final assault on the compound, slaughtering machine-gun-toting lackeys in their hundreds, slitting throats and lobbing grenades, and generally wallowing in the bloody mayhem, was certainly a memorable day. But it was superseded by the day I met you.
The memory is vivid. I was lying in my cell, reading some trash from the prison library, wondering who they were going to give me as a cellmate. Old Bill had been fairly dull company, just a lifer waiting for death. I'm a lifer too, of course, but I was waiting for something else. Love? Well, perhaps. In any case, I knew the waiting had paid off when you walked in.
Things were awkward for a time, until you got settled. Slowly you warmed to me, and pretty soon we were up half the night, telling stories about our former lives. I'll never forget the way your eyes lit up when I told my tale of revenge. You were like a child - maybe even like one of the children you murdered before they caught you.
That day in the jungle - Judgment Day, I call it - I tasted life and death like few men have. Two moments were particularly satisfying. First, when I fired my bike's handlebar rockets, blowing a large hole in the thick concrete wall and causing sentries to plummet to their deaths. And second, when I faced the big boss, the one they call Dragon, in a one-on-one fight to the death.
At the time I thought it was the closest I would ever be to another man. We were locked in a mortal embrace, knives flashing as we circled, waiting for the next move. It was a moment of blissful anticipation, akin to those few seconds in the showers between the guard leaving and you dropping the soap. Eventually, the fight proper began. We must have spent twenty minutes slashing at one another, Dragon taunting me with visions of my family's suffering. He was a skilled fighter, but not as skilled as your man. I feinted, he shifted to the right, and I brought my knife up under his chin with such force that the tip emerged from the top of his skull.
It was a cathartic moment. My family had been avenged, eye-for-an-eye, tooth-for-a-tooth, and then some. I was covered with the blood of my enemies, so sated that I didn't resist when the police came and took me away. I didn't care. I had achieved closure.
Still, something was missing, and that something was you. As much as I enjoyed kneecapping Dragon's lieutenants, stuffing grenades down his guard dogs' throats, and disembowelling his kitchen staff, it all pales in comparison with you, my love. Your muffled gasp as I force myself on you in the depths of the night is like a symphony to my ears. Your threats to tell the warden are like beautiful poetry. Your tears when I beat you are like some glorious wine, fermented in the vat of my love. We are together forever, you and I, doing our time. And it is our time. Revenge was sweet, my dear, but not as sweet as you.