No one forgets thier name. No matter how long you work in the buisness, no matter what you do or who you do it to there is always something deep down inside of yourself that always knows who you are. The trick is to not let things get that deep. That's the way to survive with all your humanity intact. People claim they forget their name so they can hide themselves. Deep inside where none of the things we have to do can hurt us. Forgetting yourself doesn't work though, quite the oppostite because meory is a gunny thing and it can come out of no where at the strangest moments and take you away.
Take now for example. Here I am, in a shitty car, pulled off on the side of a road in the middle of nowhere, swearing gently because the light on the little mirror on the sun visor is burnt out. Its midmorning, which is a small blessing in of iteself, but that little light really helps for all the fine detail work you have to do.
I spent one year learning how to enter nearly any structure undetected, kill anyone I need to, and leave without ever getting caught. The next three years were spent on makup. That may be a slight exhageration. In the school they call it identity detection countermeasures, which is a really cute way of saying makeup school. I know more about what I do with makeup than most professionals and I often findmyself watching tv critiquing the jobs they do. Sherman once spent two months undercover on a movie set. Fit right in with the makeup crew. When he retired he went back to work with them.
Makeup is a blessed thing. A li9ttle poweder here, some lines there and all the sudden you are ten years younger, or older as the case may be. With some grace and sublety you can turn into someone compleatly diffrent, someone who would never be picked out of a line up, you can become as uninteresting or interesting as you need to be, add or loose weight, hell you can switch genders, just so long as no one grabs your dick in the proicess.
At the end of the day, it becomes so important because it allows you to be someone else. Someone who didn't do those things. So when I stand in my bathroom looking into the mirror I can smile to myself and think, "I didn't do those things today, oh no, that was someone else, someone who is a bastard". Today I am Richard Nelson, and man is this guy a cunt. After getting into an argument with my father some 30 years ago, I storm out of the house and never talk to him again. I don't even know that my father fell and broke his hip almost 3 years ago and had to be moved into a home. I don't know that he lay there for a whole day without food or water before a cable repair man came and found him, and I didn't know that an orderly used to abuse him. I didn't know any of these things. Despite all these things I am going to show up after not talking to him for 30 years, because of something that happened 30 years ago, and I am going to kill him. Yeah today I am Richard Nelson. Today I become a real class act.
Now this, this is a bum detail. The worst it gets. Still I look the closest to his son today, not that it matters. Hair piece in place I put the briefcase back onto the floor and readjust the revear mirror, just incase something decides to rear out of the pergatory that is rural texas and attempts to make itself interesting. I place the briefcase back onto the floor adjust my glasses and, cross on over to the point of no return.
Its 11:30 when I pull up to the rest home. The girl at the desk looks like she hasn't been sitting there for 10 minuts yet and she is already board out of her mind. Not even mustering up a half interest she looks up from a magazine flashing a smile that screams, "I smile because it is manditory and I hate you for being here" and asks, "How may I help you?"
I smile back, biting back my instinctual loathing towards her, my disgust at the task at hand, and the general urge to leave. I gather it all in my mouth and just like all thouse time where we throw up just a little I swallow it, and with charm amped up to the max I tell her that I am here to visit my father Tobias Nelson, while fantasyizing about snapping her neck.
"Oh you know Tobias?"
I didn't expect this. I wanted to be done and out of this place, far away on a beach with my own face on because I didn't want to do this, "Yes m'mam I am his son, I heard he wasn't well and I thought that it is hight time that the two of us make amends". It is wonderful how lies can bring fairytales to life. Tobias, a sweet garolouse old man who avoided the creepy stigma so often attached to the elderly had won this apathetic waif's young pathetic heart. Beautiful. While she chatters away about how excited he will be to see me, I run a risk assesment in my head, looking for any reason possible to pull out, leave now, run. It comes up negative.
A nurse who I know for a fact is also nice to Tobias comes up with promises to lead me to him, along with a series of pheremonal signals that indicates that she would be willing to suck my dick in a supply closet should I chat her up in just the right way. One of those things that will just never happen sadly. Through a complex series of hallways we are spat out onto a sunlit patio wreathed by trees and song birds. Much nicer than the borchure made it out to be. I knew where I was being lead, there he sat, in a wheelchair book in lap, looking up at the birds singing. The nurse introduces us and in a raspy voice so unlike the ones from his youth he snaps, "that is not my son. I don't know who you are"
Gravity can somtimes take hold emotions. All the joy that nurse just felt about my visit just got crumpled into a ball and flung to the bottom of the mariannas trench where it became smaller than a pea and eaten by something humans have never laid eyes on before. To give comfort I put my hand on her lower back an lead her away for a bit, I could feel her heat against my hand, and wasn't moved, "Look miss it has been a long time, do you think we can have a little privacy?"
She smiled hestiently, "Just pull on that emerency chord if you need anyone"
I give her a smile wrapped in sheep's skin, "does he have a favorite place he likes to go?"
"Y-yes there is a path he likes to be pushed around on, it starts over there and goes all throughout the woods. It starts over there as a matter of fact."
"Alright thankyou, you go on and get back to work, I have a lot of ground to cover."
I grab the back of his chair as I walk back over to him and start pushing him twords the path, "Come on Dad letas see what this path you are so fond of is all about"
We walk through the woods in scielence for a bit. After about 10 minuts he looks back up at me, eyes squinting, "I've seen you before haven't I?"
"Yes I am your son, surely you remeber"
"CUt the bullshit kid, if you think some makeup and false smile is going to fool me then you should of waited until I had a few more marbles loose upstairs before trying that line on me"
Fuck. Well so far for that theory. After years of working in the buisness I should know by now that intelegence is always wrong, even when it comes to a broken down old man at the end of hius days, well specficly today actually, "Sorry Tobias we thought it would be easyer for you"
"Well good to see that after a lifetime of paying taxes the goverment has my best interests at heart"
"Don't give me that you haven't payed taxes in over 30 years"
"fine then that nurses tax dollars, she likes you, you know, and you better not lay one more finger on her"
"I know and I won't. I don't like this any more than you do. But you broke the promise and you know what that means"
He hung his head a little, "Yes yes the promise, I know. The god damned promise. So how are you going to do it"
This is new. New and compleatly intolerable. Nobody knows I am coming, I am never recognized for what I am, and they never know what my prescense represents. I bump into them, then I slip away and no one is the wiser as to what possibly could of happened until it is far to late. Most of them die in thier sleep, which is what I should of done. Fuck. Damnit. The secutiry here is laughable I could of just been in and out no contact no stress, why am I here?
"Why are you here anyway? I expected to die quietly in my sleep. What sort of crap operation are you running now?"
"You know Tobias, if you want the honest answer?"
"I do. After a lifetime of lies it is least I deserve"
"Well that's why I am here now. It is the least you deserve, to be able to look me in the eye and spit in it if you want to" Is that the truth? Why did I say that, why would I say that? I am not, whatever his assholes son's name is right now, I am loosing control of this situation, and this, this just isn't good.
"Hey turn off here, there is a path through the woods that I used to like to go on"
I hardly heard him, as I veered off into the woods. Path? This isn't a path, it is a root strewn game trail. I've always hated the outdoors, prefering urban jobs over anything else, concrete, streets, the smells, here there are just bugs birds, me, and Tobias. I carefully work the chair over the roots, between trees, and around bushes. Soon my suit jacket is off, and my shirt, drenched in sweat, and then out of no where, we are in a medow, a little oasis in the middle of nowhere. Towards the left side lay the foundations of a house, put down by some frounteers man now long forgotten.
I could hear the smile on Tobia's face, "glad to see you made it, not much of a woodsman are you? Come on wheel me on over to what was once that house over there. Good, would you like an apple? I brought enough for the both of us?"
I take it without a word and eat in scilence. He looks around smileing happily, the birds seem to sing only for him, deliberatly ignoring my prescense, sencing my guilt in what is about to happen, "I used to love to come out here and listen to the birds" THen noticing the way I am sort of half squatting, half sitting, like a man who is just above a mixture of dead plants, animals, and living animals who eat the dead animals, along with a layer of green plants that cover up an ocean of disease like an army of snakes encicing me twords oblivion, "Not much of an outdoors man are you we've been out here for the better part of an hour now and you are still doing the rediculouse half squat thing, now just sit down"
I did and let moisture seep through the seat of my pants, and yet I wasn't uncomfortable. We went on in scilence some more. After awhile he held up another apple inquisitvily which I declined with a wave of my hand, he shrugged, "more for Lucy I suppose, that is if she hasn't forgotten about me"
Leaning fowards I was about to ask but he cut me off with a charp wave of his hand, and then she sat stock still. A minute went by before I saw her, a magnificent female deer regarding us from the other side of the medow. It stood there regarding us carefully, not recognizing me at all, and unsure about Tobias. Carefully he took one step twords us, then another. It took her nearly 10 minuts for her to cross the medow, every muscle tense, ready to bolt. The last 5 feet took the longest. The deer's body, so close to my face that I could reach out an touch her, nostrles full of her alien sweat, I'd never been this close to a wild animal before and should it decide to spook it could very well crush me during its escape. A set up? Did Tobias set me up? Lure me out here, stalling the inevitable just to make one last desperate bid for life? He could, knew who I am, and he sees me, death for anyone in the buisness, now all that needs to happen is that the hammer needs to fall. There he is, feeding that deer slices of apple from his hands, and any moment they will both turn on me and it will be over. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid. I am going to die here in this stupid field, in the dirt surrounded by bugs, and shit, with birds singiung, and the deer had finnished eating. Affectionaly Tobias reached out and stroked the side of her face, then she nuzzled his hands licking the juice from his fingers, After a minut she left as she came, without a sound. Here is sit, still alive.
Tobias loojked over at me, "Thankyou for this by the way. I could see how much that deer scared the shit out of you. I was going to warn you but she showed up before I could. Here I thought I would never see her again"
"Excuse me? I may be old and just a little death but I haven't even asked a question in the past hour, so what the hell are you talking about?"
"When you asked if you had seen me before. I was your cable repair man ten years ago"
He sat back in his chair and smiled, "I thought so. Its your eyes that give you away you know. Look, I was wondering, would it be okay if I get to see one last sunset before you do what it is you came here to do?"
"Sure Tobias, no problem."
He nodded with satisfaction and resumed reading his book, he wasn't more than halfway though it and I didn't have the heart to ask him what he was reading. An hour passed like that, then two, and then I couldn't take it anymore, "Tobias, why did you tell?"
As he looked up, he snapped the book shut, it personified punctionation. He thought for a moment, and almost seemd to drift away before answering, "Look government boy, should you get to my age you'll understand. I have no friends, no familiy, I live in a shit hole retirement home where assholes tell me what to do all day, what I can eat, and how I should dress, all because I broke this stupid hip. Half the people here are dead already, they are just going through the motions until this body catches up with them. I can hardly get a good conversation here to save my life. Then some asshole ordely puts me in this chair and keeps me there, I am tired, and despite being in fantastic health, I want to go.
"Yeah I blabbed a bit knowing that you would come, do me quiet, most likely in my sleep, and be done with it. It won't hurt will it?"
"No it will be just like going to sleep"
"Oh you've taken your poison before?"
"Yes actually just below a leathal dose. Its imporant to know what your chemiucals do to a person so you can stradigize appropriatly"
Tobias snorted a bit, "Rediculouse"
"It also helps build tolerances"
I'm at a loss, "Okay so what is it?"
Tobias smiled, looking off into the distance with almost a wistful look on his face he didn't answer for awhile. He seemed to be thinking about something else entirely. Then his eyes cleared returing his razor shap wit, "Well if I had to guess, I would have to say that it would have to do with the fact that you are obsessed with death."
Frowing I looked around the medow, "That's a little harsh don't you think?"
"Surely you can't be seriouse. You are here to kill me, you my assasin, I have absolutely no reason what so ever to mince words with you"
Tobias frowned, he wanted to say, "I may be an assasin but I am still a human being. Underneath all this makup, training, and lies I want to be loved, respected, and talked to just like everyone else. That taking a life has never gotten easy, and that the only reason I am here is because I am the closest thing you have to a real friend at the moment" but I said none of those things. This isn't right. Somewhere deep down a trick had been played on me somewhere along the line. A trick that leads me fact to face with this broken down old man, who is still so full of life and wit. Why should he go when so many others are forced to spiral down gracelessly into a sea of helplessness and uncontrolled bowel functions. Why should he get to avoid this fate, and why am I so angry at him? After a moment I just decided to change the conversation, "So after that orderly disapreared, things got better right?"
Tobias waved his hand dismissivly, "Eh the nurses are still lazy, the food is cold and tasteless, I am surrounded by idiots, this isn't how I wanted my life to go, and it is certainly not how I want my life to end. Which is why I called you in after all."
"What would you have done if my organization wasn't around?"
"Oh I don't know. To be honest I wasn't even sure if you were still watching. I mean after all of these years waiting for you guys to tire of me and to just let the hammer fall I began to think that you had given up watching me. So if you hadn't shown up in a couple of days i would of gone out with a bunch of sleeping pills and moonshine. A good death, and I am old enought that I won't have to deal with the usual problems involved in such endevours." Tobias shrugged before adding, "I don't know if I cou8ld do it myself though. I figgured with all the shit you people put me through you owed this to me at the very least.