March of 1967, somewhere outside of Las Vegas.
A man drove down an empty road on the outskirts of Las Vegas, Nevada. His hand hung from the steering wheel as he drove. The car was filled with smoke from not only the cigarette hanging from his bottom lip but the dozens of other yellowed and eroded butts lining the vehicle’s rather flammable interior floors and seats.
There was a low hum of static that exuded softly from the radio as he pulled over behind a stopped Volkswagen Beetle on the side of this desolate county highway. The car, which was rusting from the top down, was being used as a safe space for some out-of-their-mind 17-year-old. The man turned the radio up rather than down and stepped out of the car.
Despite it being mid-day there wasn’t another soul on the road.
The beating heart of this eternally dying desert thumped manically with each passing step as he approached the passenger side window of the Beetle. He looked inside to see the kid slumped and glazed over.
The man tapped the window with three knocks. The young kid on the inside stirred for a moment while rubbing his temples. After a moment he glared up at the haunting stature of this mysterious man. He jumped and began screaming hysterically. The drugs had already consumed him.
The kid looked on in horror as the man outside of the car now pressed a gun to the glass. The acid-induced neurosis engulfed him more. He was sweating profusely and screaming louder and louder, he tried to talk but he was trapped inside his own mind. The kid grabbed a suitcase that sat in the passenger’s seat and hit it against the window repeatedly until it shattered.
Then, crawling out of the broken window, he fell onto the road and began bleeding from the glass shards now piercing his palms and knees. The man moved around the car to be closer to the feverish boy. The young kid crawled out to the middle of the road while he attempted to stand. The hot tar felt as if it was melting beneath him.
Completely lost in this daytime night terror, he rolled onto his back twitching and turning as foam dripped from his mouth. He was having a seizure. Too many bad drugs mixed with any hint of fear could kill anyone in such a trance.
The killer lined up his shot.
With no ounce of remorse, he pulled the trigger and put the teenage dreamer out of his misery. The man walked to the shattered glass next to the vehicle where the suitcase sat. As he picked it up he wiped off any debris gently and then made his way to the car.
As he sat back in his seat, he clicked open the suitcase. All of the narcotics, booze, uppers, downers, psychedelics and grass were accounted for among other things. That was except for the few laced blotter sheets of acid that would have killed the boy even if the man wasn’t here to recover the goods.
He shut and locked the suitcase before throwing it in the back seat. He put the car into gear, twisted the dial to a new station and then sped away while clipping the lifeless body.
The man was on his way to the strip to collect his reward.