Jimbo & Offer: PRELUDE
I had no idea where the monkey got the sword, but I was sure as hell glad he knew how to use it.
I was standing in the middle of a room full of the dead and dying in my chain mail bikini, clutching my Smith and Wesson. On the surface I’m a pretty average looking guy. I’ve got a bit of a paunch around my middle, and I’ve got a growing bald patch in the back, but I like to think that I’m beautiful on the inside.
One of the Bar-Freaks came at me, and I put an old world .500 mag round through his face, popping his head nice and neat. This calmed the Bar-Freaks down pretty damn quick, and I waved my gun around to make a point. “Anybody else got a problem with me or the monkey?”
Jimbo wiped his sword clean on a corpse’s tattered vest, then sheathed it in a smooth, graceful motion. He was a Japanese Macaque, about twenty three pounds, and missing an eye. I assume he lost it in a duel, since, being a monkey, he didn’t really talk very much about that kind of thing. He wore that flowing samurai garb, complete with a family crest showing a bunch of bananas, which I’m pretty sure aren’t native to Japan.
You’d think, with a pair like us, people wouldn’t try to start anything, but for some reason every time we go anywhere trouble just seems to start up. “You,” I said, pointing my gun at the bartender’s face. “Did you put them up to this?”
“Aww no way, man,” the bartender said, his hands way up towards the rusty tin ceiling. “You know Bar-Freaks, man. There’s no controlling them! They just like, come in here, and they like, get their drink on, then whammo, ya know? It’s like herding piranha, man! You guys gonna clean this up?”
I looked to Jimbo, who casually looked around the room with his one good eye before crawling up my back to sit on my shoulder. “Nah,” I said. “I think that’s your job.”
“Screw you, man!” The bartender started to reach for something under the bar, and Jimbo’s sword clicked as he loosened it in the sheathe. the bartender seemed to think better of messing with me and the monkey, then. “What am I supposed to do, man? I don’t got any help, dudes. It’ll take me all day to clean this shit up!”
I looked around. There were a good dozen Bar-Freaks lying scattered across the bar, the alcohol addicts and the drug addicts all mixed in together in one big bloody pile. A couple were still breathing, holding the stumps of severed limbs or trying to push their guts back in, but they were being pretty quiet about it, so Jimbo and I left them to it. The rest of them, the ones who’d been too smart or too slow to get in on the action from the get go, were huddled round in corners, rubbing themselves awkwardly and trying to look like normal customers, but it was a waste. I could spot a Bar-Freak from a mile away. It’s the sunken in eyes that are the dead giveaway. A lot of people tend to rely on the fact that most Bar-Freaks have got a few extra arms or noses, but some of them would sneak around, trying to act like normal, upstanding, moral citizens.
I stuck my revolver into my bikini bottom, then took a seat at the bar. “Listen bartender, what’s your name?”
“Man, I ain’t got no name. You know we ain’t got no names. Bartenders are strictly neutral, man. We ain’t nobody, and we like it that way.”
“Well I’m Offer,” I said, pulling a cigarette from my bikini top. “And I’m a registered sex offender. You know what that means, bartender?”
He looked between my and Jimbo, “It means you and the monkey are an item?”
“You’re goddamn right it does,” I said. “And if anybody’s got a problem with it they can say it to our faces, got it?” Jimbo nodded as solemnly as a Macaque can, and the bartender swallowed hard.
“So, uhh… What can I help you guys with?”
“I heard Barbie Black’s in town, is that true?”
“Aww holy shit, man, Barbie Black? You’re after Barbie Black? Man, people gotta live in this town! There ain’t no excuse for this kinda shit. We got lives, man! We got livings to make!”
Jimbo screeched, and I leaned over the bar to grab the bartender by his filthy mop of hair. “Listen to me, you no name asshole, I don’t care who has to what in this armpit of a town, but I’ll let you know one goddamn thing for sure. If you don’t tell me where Barbie Black is then I’m gonna burn this whole mother down, and nobody’s walking away clean from that mess, you hear me?”
“Yeah man, shit, okay! Just like, try to keep it away from my bar, dude! I got big enough problems without a couple of head hunters trying to erase the Black, ya know?”
“We aren’t headhunters,” I said, letting go of the weasly little snake and turning to leave. “Barbie Black done Jimbo wrong, and I aim to show that bitch that nobody messes with my monkey.”