Why is there so much blood?
Clearly, "clean" hadn't been on the list of things that could be used to describe a slit throat. Blood was already pooling under the head and neck, a vibrant mix of the red oxygenated blood gushing out the carotid artery and darker deoxygenated blood leaking from the jugular vein, as well as everything in between from all the other tissues that had been cut open. Blood spurt from the carotid in time with the dull rhythm of a fading heartbeat, the blood jetting up about a foot and staining the blade of Peter's sword and his jeans.
Gross. Bloodstains are a pain to clean out.
Peter looked down at Lucas' face, contorted in a tableau of unimaginable pain. His eyes were still open, and whatever life that had remained was fading out. There was no peace reflected in those eyes, that much Peter could understand. He lifted his eyes from the bloody carnage under him. Teenagers weren't meant
to see these things, to see pain and gore and death like this. Exposed neck muscles, the remains of a windpipe, it was all too much. If he looked down to survey the damage again, there was a chance he'd lose the little bit of bread he'd had for breakfast. Instead, he stepped away from the body, and growing pool of blood creeping out from beneath it.
That's definitely a lot of blood.
The body beneath him jerked.
"Holy fuck!" Peter yelled as he jumped back another foot, and almost fell flat on his ass. He should've seen it coming; he'd read about this exact thing happening before. Still, even knowing that Lucas was definitely dead, the sudden motion had managed to fire his adrenaline-pumped reflexes.
Okay. I should not be freaking out over something stupid like this
Peter gave a low chuckle, that built up to a roar of laughter. It was in no way appropriate: he had just killed somebody. Still, the incredulity of the situation was plenty effective at eliciting laughs from him. Of all the things to get spooked by, it was by something as harmless as a dead body. It was utterly ridiculous. If it had been zombies or a bear, at least it would have made sense.
Zombies make sense? That's news.
It took a moment for Peter to collect himself from. Laughing like that after killing someone probably didn't look good to Eiko, and it definitely didn't look good for those people watching on the cameras. Well, there were some sick freaks that liked seeing the psycho killers, Danya's crew notwithstanding. Peter used to watch Survival of the Fittest for the detailed gore and realistic action, at least until he figured just how real everything was. He had an idea what might have gone through the heads of those killers. He wasn't going to be like them.
With a grunt, he pushed himself up onto his feet. Eiko had taken to screaming off at something in the distance, but she at least appeared fine. No blood meant that there was no gunshot wound. He had done his part in protecting her. That was what mattered; not that he had slit someone's throat in order to do it. Nothing good would come out of dwelling on that fact.
Peter might be a killer. He wasn't a cold-blooded murderer.
Blatant lies. He was on the train to dying in the next few hours anyway.
Lucas' body lay still, most of the blood drained from the body. There wasn't much Peter could do for the body; he had no shovel to dig a grave. Still, there had to be something he could do. Dropping the sword to the grass, Peter walked up to the corpse. It was still horrific to look at. Peter could feel the bile rising to the back of his throat. He fought it back; he needed to be strong.
If he didn't think of it as a corpse, that it hadn't been a living-
Peter pushed the idea from his mind. That would not be treating it with respect. That much Lucas deserved. His hand went to the wooden cross he wore on his neck. His finger traced along the face of the cross, a prayer forming in his mind. He gave it no voice: prayer wasn't something to be heard. Peter crouched down by Lucas' body and traced the same shape of the cross on Lucas' forehead. Lucas' lifeless eyes stared back at him. Had there been something in those eyes before the light had faded from them? Had Lucas, in his dying moment, cursed his killer?
Had he forgiven his killer?
If it mattered, Peter didn't care. With a light push of his hand, he closed the dead boy's eyes forever.
Lucas' daypack was still on his back, now soaked through with blood. Peter wasn't going to disturb the body to try to scavenge supplies. Nor was he going to try to retrieve the polearm that had been strapped to the daypack. Peter remembered the gun, fallen away in the struggle. Going to where he remembered it falling, Peter picked it up and looked at it. It was lighter than he had expected it to be, which was quickly explained when he checked its empty magazine. If there were any extra magazines, they'd be in Lucas' pack. Peter looked over at the body again. He had no plans of going through that pack, regardless of what useful things could be in there. Did it matter? Peter didn't even know if he could hit anything with a gun. The only thing he would use it for would be to discourage people from attacking, and he didn't need bullets for that.
Still, bullets could be useful.
That's the spirit! Bullets have lots of uses besides killing people.
Peter looked at the body one more time. Why had he killed Lucas? Now that he thought about it, whatever reason he'd had didn't made no sense. Lucas was already going to die. There hadn't been any good
reason for killing him. Just because he had shot at Eiko. Peter hadn't needed to react violently, but he did. Why? The more he tried to think about it, the more he came to the same conclusion: Lucas was dead, at Peter's hand. There was nothing he could do to change that fact.
"Let's go, Eiko," he said to his travel companion. What did she think about him now? Would she even stay with him, a killer? "Let's just... get away from here." Peter picked up his sword and strapped it and the new gun to the side of his backpack, then fished out a small metallic bottle, which he tucked into his pocket.
He needed a fucking drink.
((Peter Siu continued March to Your Death