[WP] A hero fights crime not with extravagant powers of superstrength or flight, but by making the smallest, insignificant actions that eventually cause the tides to turn in their favour. Combining their power of clairvoyance with their intelligence, they defeat any enemy they face.
My right eye flashed open, freed from the eye patch, and the world turned into a kaleidoscope of carnage and death. Bullets sprayed rapidly around corners and extraneous sensory information turned into a flood of death, dying. Phantom pain from moments in the future slid over top of one another.
I ducked and dove flat to the floor, and felt the heat of the firestarter slam to the side. Friend ally? Five seconds didn’t give me enough time, but the question brought a shimmer of possibilities surging up and back and down again.
Bullets passed over head; 95% of me had died in the moment, but I had grown used to seeing my own dead flesh on the ground as I carried on without them. Slammed myself up onto my legs, ignored the pain in my knees, and stared, incredulously ahead.
Right eye twirled forward in time and suddenly all possibilities melted down into just two. I died in the next five seconds or I didn’t.
The she-beast in the silk dress took a break and screamed, erupting into a horrible wretched noise that sent crates, metal, wood, and even her own gun-men flying.
She’d found her prey at last.
Another… psionic Weird to add to her growing collection.
And her sights had been set on me.
I shouldn’t taken the job after all.
The morning headache started at around 10:00 AM. Sleepy traffic was still building on the street, and the hot acrid taste of the newspaper brought back another explosion of pain behind my right eye, aching like a gun shot on the beaches of Japan.
If I listened close enough to the pain, I could make out the moment the sword touched my side and I felt the presence of the emperor, crystalline Opal palace swimming along a sea of regret.
The kaleidoscope of actions in the future swung back and forth from my right eye, and smoothly, I reached into my desk drawer and slipped the eye patch on.
That was enough practice for the day. If he was lucky, it wouldn’t ruin everything this time. Besides. He was getting a visitor.
I counted down the seconds one by one, taking my legs off of the desk and sliding them to make myself look presentable. Not that the eye patch didn’t ruin that allure.
I could pretend that was the reason why.
There was a knock at the door.
“Come in,” I said, smoothly.
Blonde. Feminine in that distinctly way that women who had slammed their way through factories managed, supplying the invasion of japan. It was easy to see that she hadn’t let herself fall unenlisted after the war was over, either, given the rank scent of oil on her clothes.
Didn’t know her story yet.
Five seconds wasn’t that long of a time to look into the future, but it was enough.
“You’re the new PI, right?” she asked. Her eyes drifted to the eye patch.
It was fine, I didn’t want her to see the blood shot eye, or the way it tracked things that weren’t there yet. There wasn’t much of a point to pretending it wasn’t a disability, no matter how occasionally useful it was.
“Danya Turin,” I jerked a thumb over to the tag on my desk. “Got the license and the gun. What can I do for you, miss?”
“Rachel,” Rachel introduced herself. “And I got a problem,”
I gestured for her to continue, and her fingers quested into the pocket of her overalls and drew out a cigar. She lit it with a flick of her fingers, a grin on her face as she watched my non reaction.
Fire starter. Walter probably knew her. Walter kept a close eye on the weird of the city; you never knew when his safe room would come in handy for a favor or three.
Rachel mused over the cigarette for a long moment, then leaned back against the chair. Perfect balance. Handy.
Did she see the Opal Palace, or did she just hear the screams in her dreams, distant, dreary, forgotten? The smoke from her cigar drifted back and forth under her control, against her breathing.
“Don’t want to go to the cops with this, you understand,” Rachel said, flicking the cigar between her fingers. “Figure they’ll brush me off as hysterical.”
“There’s a reason I’m still in business,” I said, vaguely amused. Wouldn’t have to take the flask today. “What’s the issue?”
“It’s my boyfriend,” Rachel said, smoothly. “He’s gone missing. We were supposed to meet up last night, and he never showed up.”
“You willing to pay for me to look for him?” For a moment, my concentration slipped, and my future sight told me she was, and rewarded me a fat dollop of bloody pain for my troubles. Perfect.
“I didn’t figure you gave out free samples, detective,” Rachel said. “But I can pay your prices.”
I breathed in, tasted the acrid smoke, and ignored that wriggling sensation in the back of my head demanding to know the future, twisting, hungry, searching. Kept the eye patch on.
“Besides,” Rachel said, looking over at the wall. Medal still hung there from the invasion of the mainland. Russian script.
Hoped my accent was going away, had a feeling it was.
“He’s a vet like you. Figure there’s some solidarity in there.” Rachel laughed, watching me.
There was trouble in this city if you weren’t willing to go the cops. Meant that her boyfriend was just as Weird as she was.
Just as Weird as I was. Could be messy.
I leaned back in my chair and plucked a folder out of my filing cabinet. Signed some papers. Wrote down some notes.
“And what’s your address?” I asked. “So I can catch up with you?”
She smirked and gave me everything I’d probably need to track him down.
If I was lucky, it’d be an easy job, and the money would flow. There was always an easy source of money when you could see the future.
If not, well.
There was always the bar.