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Rated: E · Serial · Supernatural · #1614474
Introducing the Prime of Darkness, Tiny Daylittle, and Love & War, Texas
Sitting on the porch swing eat­ing orange pop­si­cles, Tiny Daylittle and the Prime of Darkness were being watched.

Although offi­cially over, sum­mer still hadn’t quite given up the ghost. Nestled in the heart of west Texas desert, Love & War was as hot as a pizza oven. Or Hell, Tiny thought, cast­ing a side­ways glance at the Prime of Darkness. She made a men­tal note to ask him about this one day. Sweaty and irri­ta­ble, Tiny pushed the swing with her foot to stir the still air. Breezes were obsti­nate and refused to blow. As she bit off the end of her pop­si­cle, Tiny squinted at the house across the street.

“They’re look­ing at you,” Tiny said after a while. “That’s gotta be so weird, to have peo­ple star­ing at you all the time.”

The Prime of Darkness shrugged, lick­ing around his pop­si­cle so it wouldn’t drip. “It’s prob­a­bly a lot like being famous,” he said. “Like being a celebrity.”

Tiny snorted. “Not that this town’s ever seen any­thing remotely as inter­est­ing as a celebrity. Hell, I guess you’re the clos­est thing to excite­ment they get out here.”

Darkness fol­lowed Tiny’s gaze and saw that the fam­ily across the street was indeed watch­ing them, though they made a good show of pre­tend­ing they weren’t. “How do you know they’re not look­ing at you?”

Tiny cocked her head to the side, thought­ful. “They might be,” she admit­ted. “Should I give them some­thing to look at?” Smiling, Tiny swiveled on her butt, leaned back, and stretched one leg out in front of her, press­ing the ball of her foot against Darkness’s chest. She made sure the looky­loos across the street got an eye­ful of a long swathe of alabaster skin from her ankle to her hip. With a dev­il­ish grin, she turned her head, stuck out her tongue, and wrig­gled her fin­gers coquet­tishly at the folks across the way.

The fam­ily across the street turned their backs, and Tiny could swear she heard the woman gasp.

Darkness shook his head and knocked Tiny’s foot from his chest. He wasn’t sure what game Tiny was play­ing, but he was pretty sure she was up to no good.

“I’m bored,” she com­plained, turn­ing back around and cross­ing her legs Indian-style under­neath her. “There’s noth­ing to do in this town. There’s not even– oh, hey,” she breathed, a sud­den light flick­er­ing behind her eyes. “We should go see that Simon St. Laine show over in Placerita tomor­row tonight, you want to?”

“Who’s that?”

Tiny shrugged. “I saw a flyer last time I was at the BRB. ‘Simon St. Laine – implau­si­ble magi­cian’ or some­thing. Gracey said he’s not very good. Corny. But it might be fun. You want to?”

The Prime of Darkness thought for a moment, then shook his head. “I don’t know, Tiny. It might be…awkward.”

She was about to ask why when under­stand­ing struck and she dropped her shoul­ders, deflated. “Oh. Because of the whole.…armor-wearing demon thing.” She indi­cated his out­fit with a non­com­mit­tal wave of her hand.

The Prime of Darkness nodded.

“Well, lis­ten,” Tiny said, her voice care­fully light and non­cha­lant. “Can’t you just do that thing you do with the shad­ows? Where you sort of…bring them to you? And hide?”

The Prime of Darkness nod­ded slowly. “I can if it’s dark enough. But what about inside the the­ater? House lights can be bright enough that I can’t hide that well.” He shrugged his large shoul­ders, peered off into the dis­tance. “I’ll just stay here. People here have got­ten used to me. Or they’re too polite to say any­thing. You and Gracey should go, though. I can look after myself.”

Tiny thought about this a moment. It was true that the peo­ple in this back­woods town were sur­pris­ingly kind to the Prime of Darkness. Of course, that was prob­a­bly because they didn’t know what he was. No one knew but she and Gracey. Most peo­ple seemed to think he was a cir­cus per­former, or men­tally hand­i­capped, or a par­tic­i­pant in a real­ity TV show. (How they explained the lack of cam­era crews Tiny had no idea.) But ever since they had brought him home after find­ing him passed out on the side of the road, folks had just accepted him, like a blue-skinned man in a super­hero cos­tume wasn’t the strangest thing they’d ever seen in all their lives.

Actually, their will­ing­ness to accept him was kind of weird.

Tiny shrugged. “Well, what­ever. Let’s at least go for a walk or some­thing. I’m sick to death of this house.”

The Prime of Darkness nod­ded, got to his feet. “Yes. Sure,” he said. “You want to go now?”

Tiny stood, stretched, and tossed her pop­si­cle into the trash. “I got to put on some sun­screen first. I’m so white I burn if you look at me wrong. But I guess you don’t have to worry about that?”

Darkness looked down at his bare arms, his blue skin almost purply-black in the shade. “I don’t think I burn,” he said. “But I don’t usu­ally go out in the sun if I can help it.  Maybe I should put some sun­screen on, too. Just in case.”

Tiny was about to point out that if he didn’t burn in Hell, he prob­a­bly wouldn’t burn in Texas, but fig­ured he would miss her joke and retort some­thing about not hav­ing a phys­i­cal body when he was in Hell. So instead she just smirked and said noth­ing as she fol­lowed Darkness into the house. If noth­ing else, the smell of Banana Boat sun­screen waft­ing off the Prime of Darkness’s blue-gray skin was some­thing she didn’t want to miss.

See all stories from "Tales from Love & War, Texas" at http://www.loveandwartx.com
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