For NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) 2014, a few friends and I decided to come up with a slew of short stories about a fictional cop from near future Detroit that we named Joe Chicago. The stories were fun and really let us flex our creativity to fit a more a trans-atlantic taste. I wrote one story about Joe investigating in an evidence locker, and when the month was over I wrote this little piece to end the character (for good? Maybe, maybe). So here it is: The Death of Joe Chicago.
Another glob of blood and teeth hit the dirt of the asphalt, crowned, and puddled. Joe wiped at his sore lips with the back of his sleeve, likely tearing the skin a little more, though he couldn’t feel it. He looked up at the man who had again knocked him to the ground. Willy the Shiv stood above him, his mouth frothing and eyes ablaze with the neon reflection of the shuttered store fronts.
“Get up, Joe ya bum, get up.” Willy muttered through his clenched teeth and spittle.
The last time Joe took that advice, he was kissing pavement soon after. This time, he stayed down.
“No? Oh, Chicago… I am truly, truly disappointed in you.” The opponent tutted, circling Joe.
“Bite a bullet, you piece of-” This time the blow came from Willy’s boot, and it was right to the skull, causing the old detective to roll over on his back. His head was swimming; the dim lights around the pair were blinding, and seemed to be dancing in his concussed confusion. He coughed up some more blood – an automatic reaction to the warm fluid filling the back of his throat. He felt a speckled trail of liquid cover his cheek and chin, and his vision began to tint a deep crimson.
“Well, here it is, ladies and gentlemen – this is how the almighty Joe Chicago dies!” Yelled the maniac, to nobody. If Joe had a dime for every time some street-rat scumbag said that, well, he’d probably still be being beaten to death, albeit a little more drunk.
Joe wouldn’t have minded that one bit.
The old man tried sitting up, but the deep wound to his gut just left him tense and shaking. He managed to stutter through a few more broken words, “Hey. D-dick. You m-missed a s-spot.” A spray of blood shot through his gums as he worked through the words. He painfully raised a finger to touch the un-marked and un-bruised side of his head.
The Shiv took out a handgun. Shame. Where’s the poetry in that?
The lights no longer hurt his eyes. Joe didn’t even notice the ringing in his ears until it stopped.