Read Part One: Birth of a Hero!
Washington DC – Hyper Lucy’s Supermarket, 2.15PM
“Look, pal, we ain’t don’t got none of the things you wanna buy in this here store.” A store manager of the Hyper Lucy’s in Washington is talking down a customer wanting to purchase breakfast cereal. The store is all out though, and has been for weeks. “You want that, you’re gonna have to go somewhere else, buddy. Somewhere else that ain’t not this store.”
Two customers hurry from the back towards the manager. “Sir, sir!” they cry, “there’s something awful happened round the back aisles of your shop!”
“Can’t be no worse than what I got happening in front of me now, can it?” says the manager, turning away from the breakfast-desiring man, “I’ll come look at what it is or ain’t what not to be.”
He walks down the centre aisle, the two customers sticking back at the entrance and watching him. Fear metaphorically oozes from their pores. Shlurp. Like that, but not.
The manager rounds the corner. “Well, God damn,” he says. “Earl,” he yells, “Got somebody done gone left a baby here again.” He can see the carry case lying on the floor, whatever it holds turned away from him. He gradually walks towards it, cooing gently “hey there, little fella, or ain’t you a fella perhaps, and a girly instead? Don’t make no difference to me, we just gotta get you out of the shop and,” he pauses as he reaches the carrier, kneeling down to turn it around, “let’s just take a look at you, eh?”
The baby is fat.
A scream echoes around the building, the manager runs back to the front of the store, panting and out of breath. His face is red. “Earl,” he yells at the guy behind the counter, “put that phone down and call the cops instead. This ain’t not just a dumped baby we’re dealing with.”
Twenty minutes later, the customers and staff are having their statements taken by police. The manager is stood by the door talking to the officer in charge. “You did the right thing, calling us,” the cop says, “some people try to handle situations like this themselves. Gets messy.”
“I ain’t no fool, sir,” says the manager, “I been brought up right and I know when something is too much more’n I can handle.”
“That’s good. Good head on them shoulders, I can tell.”
In the back of the store a SWAT team has grouped down amongst the aisles, weapons ready.
“Joe, Carlos, I want you two circle round the other side, move up ahead of it, keep its attention. Me and Jim here will move up behind, get this thing surrounded, grab him and bring him in. Any questions?”
“What do we do if we think we’re in danger, sir?”
“Joe, you’re new, but I’ll tell you the same thing I tell all my men. You get into a bad situation, you trust your gut.”
“Let’s go, boys.”
Thirty seconds later a shotgun blast is heard.
“Carlos! Oh Christ! Carlos!”
“Move!” screams the captain. Him and Jim round the corner of their aisle. “Grab the carrier!”
Jim dives at it and wraps his arms tight around the handle. “Got him, sir! Got him!”
The captain runs over to Joe, who’s kneeling next to Carlos’ body. Blood is sprayed over the freezer counters next to them.
“I couldn’t take it, sir. I thought I saw something, I pulled the trigger. I couldn’t take it. I lost it, sir. Oh God, Carlos.”
“Son, he knew the risks when he signed up to this op.”
Fifteen minutes later and a body bag is being wheeled out of the store. The carry case has been slung in the back of a police van. The manager and officer still stand outside the door.
“Thing I don’t understand, sir,” says the manager, “is how does a kid get that messed up in the first place?”
“Well, that’s the worst one I’ve ever seen, and I’ve heard a lot of theories about it. Some folks reckon they’re born like that, others that they’re cursed by witches or God or the devil or whatever. Wanna know what I think?”
“What do you think?”
The officer pulls a lighter from his pocket and a pack of cigarettes from another. He pulls one out, places it in his mouth and lights it. He takes a long drag “Me?” he breathes out, white smoking wreathing his face, “I blame the parents.”
In the police van, sat in his carry case, a fat tear rolls down the chubby cheek of Fat Baby.
Read Part Three: When an Unstoppable Force meets a Fat Baby!