welcome to the real world

Scheiße, but I hate crowded airports. Why couldn't Crawford get one of Takatori's damn minions to pick him up?

But "Just be there, Schuldig," he says in his prissiest manner. Uptight bastard.

He's not the one who has to stand around being bombarded by hundreds of loud overexcited minds. It's like being in a damn room with speakers blaring "It's a Small World" at you from all four corners.

Ab-so-lute-ly fucking nauseating.

And it's given me a headache.

Sure, every now and then there's a nice gooey chocolatey patch of fear from a traveller who's scared of flying, or the vinegar and lime tang of someone who doesn't want to be here, but mostly it's a chaotic blast of excited anticipation. Why can't these people keep their damn thoughts down?

Tell me, what's so bloody marvellous about being a brief uncomprehending spectator of some foreign culture whose only interest is the number of dollars they can squeeze from your wallet? Or the return of some family member you can barely tolerate most of the time?

And after they leave here, they return to their exact same innocent little lives. Ignorant little lives is more like it. These sheep wouldn't know the real world if it bit them, they're all so damn happy lying to themselves about reality - oblivious to the fact their banal views are spoon-fed to them by the media, the government, the Powers That Be.

None of this herd would know a true predator if he walked past them - and guess what? I just did.


All of them. Take those American yuppie assholes talking over there - so eager to get home to... gott, I don't even have to scan that deep to find out Yuppie #1 really does have a wife, two children, an SUV and a house with a white picket fence. The man is a walking cliché.

He shows some self-preservation instincts however, looking around searchingly as his subconcious registers that he's being watched. He spots me and I smile back at him in my best 'Hello Sailor' manner. He flicks his gaze hurriedly away. Yuppie #2 thinks a derogatory word and sneers. And oh, look, there's my American - Armani-clad, briefcase in hand, immaculate as ever.

"Brad! Darling!"

I drag him forward into a hug and plant a big juicy one on his lips. He doesn't struggle, so I guess this was the least unpleasant of all his foreSeen welcomes. Yuppie #2's mind erupts in a delicious hot jet of outrage. Mr Walking Cliché, on the other hand, quickly stifles a flicker of something interesting...hmmm. Seems he's not quite the Mr All American everyone thinks.

"Are we ready to go, or did you want to shock the natives some more?" Crawford asks in a mildly disgruntled tone.

"Moment mal," I say, then turn and give the Yuppies a wink, making a few small mental adjustments to Mr Walking Cliché.

All those little suppressions and lies he's been telling to maintain his perfect little life are about to come crashing down. Seems that faint interest in Yuppie #2 is going to develop into an obsessive attraction. Almost, one might say, a fatal attraction. Heh heh. No more white picket fence and 2.4 children for you.

I slide my arm through Crawford's and smirk at him, my headache fading already. Crawford shakes his head and smiles back resignedly as we head towards the exit.

Welcome to the Real World.

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