Her fingers drummed nervously on the steering wheel, the sight of her chipped nail polish making her more agitated than she already was. Huffing, she readjusted the back view mirror, just to have something to do. She was at that very gas station at the edge of the city. Just next to the highway. The emergency meeting spot set years ago and solidified by commonly spilt blood.
Waiting, waiting and waiting.
There was no one behind her, and her phone had no notifications.
She flipped her hair to the side. Sighed, checked the blank screen again, and tapped her knee. The sun was beginning to dip, like a gentleman leaning forward tipping a hat, only freezing there. Annoyed, she yanked the sun visor down. Her partner in crime (literally, in this case) was late. Should she call her again? She lowered her window, but the smell of gasoline brought in the memories of clouds of smoke; swirling around and suffocating, so she undid that as impulsively.
Hey. Wanna do something crazy?
She considered herself as a very helpful person. Growing up, she always was. Helping old ladies cross the street, the usual struggle with the neighbor’s groceries. Tipping extra some days just to see the server smile, and always saying yes to study dates in the library that ended up with very little studying.
Maybe that was it, her inability to say no.
Or maybe it was her smile, her dimpled smile and strawberry blond hair whipping around the car, that teasing eyebrow raise.
You wouldn’t have the guts.
Another back adjustment, quick glance at the screen, disappointed shoulder droop and sigh. She needed to stretch her legs. Another glace at the empty station from her mirror, she allowed herself to consider it – but the contents of her trunk were like shackles tied too tightly.
But then again, what are the odds… she’s in the middle of nowhere.
The nowhere the both of them had agreed on, the one they always slow-waltzed towards: always teetered on the edge of, yearning for the other side.
It was a love that burned very, very slowly, the pain making life worth living.
Imagine. All of your wildest dreams come true.
She punched the roof, groaned. So close, so close. And all she had to do was hope that the plan succeeds. Years of planning and calculated moves… by the time it was finalized, it was almost like an intricate dance: every decision deliberate and purposeful, strong but graceful, and to the world outside, chaos.
Hey. You sure about this?
She could finally kill the previous version of her and start anew. Not now, but soon – a mantra of self consolation, circling around her for years but suddenly oh so very soon. All that was left now was a singular wait.
Tonight. Seriously? Yeah. Let’s do it.
An empty lot behind her, a blank screen… and an equally vacant passenger seat.
Running was the only option left for her here. She considered sticking it out, but it wasn’t worth the risk. She had burnt every valuable bridge there was, and looted the rest.
She had to leave, with or without her.
See you tomorrow, love.
It felt like the world seemed to have stilled in response to last week, but not her.
Suddenly, the passenger door jerked and she jumped in. Her hair was unkempt and wild, like always: a color once strawberry blonde suddenly platinum. Her eyes were excited and trembling, searching for a reaction.
“Oh God,” She groaned, and reached for the keys to start the car.
“What?” Blondie gasped, “Is that all I get? A tired roll of your eyes? You’re lucky I didn’t dye my eyebrows as well,”
She snorted and started to reverse.
“Why didn’t you change your appearance… or, something?” She trailed off uneasily, rubbed her palms on her jeans. (There was a new watch on her wrist, silver and sparkling.)
Well. It did cross her mind, but she figured they would be out before warrants were issued. Why bother ruining her hair?
“I see you’ve been busy burning it all,” She pulled onto the main highway.
Blondie giggled and shoved her shoulder, fiddling with the new purchase.
She gave her another wicked smile of hers and she had to focus extra hard on the road ahead.
It was sick and horrible, she knew, but she understood that her feelings were not as deep as hers. Maybe it was this hope she clung on to that could eventually change that – that maybe through some insane, crazy adventure there would be a change of heart.
Something that will make her reciprocate the love Blondie threw at her.
Well, there was attraction for sure. But how long would that last – would the bags in the trunk run out before, or after?
“Some conversation would be nice,” Blondie tutted, winking at her.
“You didn’t set the watch on the right time,” She responded, speeding slightly.
“I don’t know how to read this thing,”
“Why doesn’t that surprise me?”
Blondie suddenly stretched over to her and gave her a kiss on her cheek, one that she wasn’t prepared for, causing her cheeks to burn red as her jaw slackened a bit from shock.
“Why so tense?” Blondie teased, her smile knowing and sly.
“You’re going to be the death of me,”
“Seems like the opposite with the speed you’re going on,”
“I’m being inconspicuous,”
If someone were to ask her what her origin story was, it would be that moment. A few hours fresh after her first kill, next to her first love in a stolen car, speeding on the highway with the goods in the trunk. She would grow to become the most wanted criminal of the new era, all thanks to a crazy idea that sparked a newfound passion for destruction.
It’s funny how cute that whole debacle seems, compared to now.
Especially since Blondie would grow to become her Archenemy.
She tried hard not to think about that breakup, but memories like these do come up often. It’s funny how things come full circle. If Blondie never suggested it, maybe she would never have gone down this road. Maybe they both would have only thought, dreamt and planned, but gracefully whisked each other away from the edge after a longing look on the other side.
Maybe they could have saved each other.
Blondie tried hard, gotta give her credit for that. She tried hard to save her, but failed, so she decided that she would help save the world against her, instead.
I can’t believe we pulled that off.
An excited whoop left her as they passed the exit sign. Blondie grinned at her, and she finally allowed herself to think about the bags in the trunk.
There was a lot, lot more to burn.