Alex jogged up the garden path onto the small area of his house that could kind of pass as a porch. He set don the bags containing the guns and fished out his keys from the pocket in his jeans. He pulled the loop of plastic key rings and keys out of the shallow pocket and pushed the biggest in the door. Despite the poor quality of his home and it’s relatively young age, the fronts doors of Alex’s home had large brass locks, which came with large brass keys. It was something that had confused the boy for as long as he remembered, despite what a trivial subject it was. He turned the key and the lock clicked out of place, swinging open a second afterwards. Alex reached out to pull his keys from the door and return them to his pocket. He bent down to pick up the gun duffle again and then, for a reason he couldn’t fathom, turned to looked at the patch of crushed flowers where Myles had stood a few hours before. He was relieved that it was only the daffodils that had been trampled to an early death; Alex wasn’t fond of those flowers. If it had of been the pansy’s to be sent to an early, flowery grave he would have been crushed. His love for pansies had been brought up at therapy once, which had made for an amusing session. Apparently, he gave the flowers the care and love he was too shy to give to other people. It was amazing what shit therapists got paid to say. Alex smiled to himself at the memory and walked in through the front door, slamming it behind him. He reached down to undo the tie in each lace at the top of his boots and then shook each foot a couple of times, stepping out of the shoes. Kicking them to the side of the small hallway, Alex opened to door into the living room and walked in with his bag of guns. His mom’s body had bled out a little more in the doorway, but it didn’t really worry him. Her body had turned so pale it was almost like paper and her lips a pale blue, kind of like when a wisp of cloud comes by and dulls down the blue of the sky. He stared at her lifeless body for just a couple more minutes and then walked into the kitchen. He set the bag down on a chair by the dinner table and unzipped it. The hardware and boxes in the bag made him giddy once more, and Alex couldn’t wait to open everything and set it out in full view. He started with the Mac-11s. They were his little favourites, and the boys had only purchased those particular guns because Alex had been obsessed with them. Next out was the Carbine rifle. He had been unsure of this gun when the idea was first brought up, but now that he could see it in person Alex was in love. He held the gun for a few minutes looking it over and then set it down on the table. He pulled the magazines out from the bag and set them beside their respective guns. He turned to walk away, but then he remembered what was still in his pocket. Alex pulled the Walther out of his jeans and set it on the table too, before finally walking away. He returned to the living room area and sat down on the sofa. Going by the clock in the kitchen, he had enough time to just hang out for a couple of minutes. He was a little tired from the early morning and his walk to Jimmy’s, but Alex wasn’t going to be deterred. He threw his feet up on the coffee table and lifted the TV remote, flicking onto some kids shows. Spongebob Squarepants or something equally as mindless was on, so he just left the channel on. Alex stared mindlessly at the colourful characters on the screen and he had to admit, a small part of him enjoyed just sitting and watching cartoons. He hadn’t done it for years, not since he was in fourth grade. Out of habit, Alex glanced down at the watch on his right wrist. That was something else that had been brought up at therapy. It was apparently odd that he was right handed and yet wore the watch on that wrist. Alex didn’t see anything unusual about it, it was just a watch. Everyone else made a big deal though. When he looked at the watch, it informed him it was a little before 9am. “Shit!” He grumbled, jumping up from the sofa. If Myles was on time and not randomly appearing like he did earlier, he would be there in around ten minutes. Alex stepped over his mother’s body and rushed down to his bedroom. He pulled open a draw near his bed and took out some fresh socks and a black sweater. He changed quickly, and then lifted his black backpack from the floor and a trash bag from the foot of his bed. Alex brought the bags up to the living room, before abandoning them in the kitchen beside the guns and duffel bag. Nothing in them was really necessary until Myles came anyway. He returned to the living room and sat down on the couch again, turning his attention back to the cartoons. The show had changed, and now the new version of Rugrats was on. He had never been particularly fond of that cartoon as a kid, and now the characters were pre-teens his dislike just got worse. It made life seem like such an easy façade. Cartoon or not, he at least thought it could try to be truthful to its cause. Before Alex could get too overly involved in ranting about a kids show to himself, there was a sharp rap at the door. He jumped up from the sofa once more and walked over to the door. Once he opened the door to the hallway, Alex kept his feet on the soft carpet and just stretched his arm across to unlatch the front door. “How’s it goin’ man?” Myles asked as he came in the front door. “Good, good. Oh, sorry about the mess,” Alex said sheepishly, pointing his thumb back in the direction of his mother. Myles looked over his friends shoulder at the body, “Holy shit, that’s awesome!” Alex felt a little bit of a blush come one but had a proud expression, “Thanks bud.” The two boys walked over to the sofa and sat down again, a little like they had done earlier. It was one of those unspoken facts between the two that Myles was the worlds worst sofa hog, and Alex was a little bit of a push over with his friend. They watched the last few minutes of a cartoon before flicking onto a music channel. “So how was junior prom last week?” Alex asked, turning his head a little to look at Myles. His friend shrugged and slouched down in his seat. “Was alright, not all that eventful. Kind of wish I hadn’t gone,” Myles admitted, drumming his fingers against his thigh. Alex made a brief ‘hmm’ noise in response, but didn’t say anymore. On that subject, he was a little jealous of his friend. Myles was the more social of the pair, even though he had all the brain power of two pineapples and an electric cable. Myles had gotten asked to the junior prom by one of their mutual friends a couple of months before the actual event. Alex had waited in hope that maybe one of their other friends would take pity, but in the end he spent the night of the junior prom playing video games and watching the stars from his backyard. Of course, when the subject was brought up Alex just said he wasn’t into that sort of thing and it was only a ploy to glorify jocks and waste everyone’s time. This was pretty true whether you were for or against it. “You should of came Alex, it would have been a good night if all the group had of been there.” Alex got up and walked from the sofa, muttering about how he would rather gnaw his own fingers off than go anywhere near the prom. “I’m getting a drink, want one?” Alex asked. Myles nodded and looked over from the TV. “Yeah, I’ll have whatever you have.” The other boy nodded and continued into the kitchen area to get their drinks. When Alex entered the kitchen, he walked straight past his weapons and bags as if they weren’t even there. Although he had planned for them, he was acting oddly casual to the weapons. He lifted two glasses out of the cupboard by the sink and set them on the table beside the Carbine. He then went over to the fridge and opened it, staring in mindlessly to find a liquid. He zoned out a little bit as he tried to decide on something, and only came back to reality when the fridge began to make a high pitched beep at him to let him know the fridge had been open far too long and was beginning to heat up. Shaking his head, Alex grabbed the first bottle he put his hand on and closed the fridge. Rather oddly, Alex was humming softly to himself as he poured the drinks - which turned out to be pure orange juice - into the two glasses and returned the bottle to the fridge. It was ‘Bye Bye Blackbird’. One of his favorite songs and a pretty fitting song for that day, he thought. Alex lifted the glasses and headed into the living room, still humming to himself. He gave one glass to Myles, who raised it in thanks, and then took a sip of his own juice before setting it down on the coffee table and sitting down. “So what time do you think we should start packing the car?” Alex asked, watching the TV again. “I guess we should do it soon, and then get ourselves ready,” Myles said, although sounding like he didn’t really want to move anytime soon. “The guns I got are in the kitchen,” Alex informed him, waving his hand in the direction of the kitchen. A pointless movement as Myles knew this house as well as Alex. As Alex reached forward for his glass again, Myles got up from the couch. He received an inquisitive look from his friend, which was answered with, “I’m gonna go check out the guns. Make sure Jimmy didn’t rip me off, son of a bitch.” Alex laughed and took a drink as Myles left the room, then gave his attention to the music channel. It was a piano piece being shown, ‘the Maple Leaf Rag’ by Scott Joplin. His father used to play it on piano for him before he left the house and various other pieces by the composer. Alex sighed when he thought of his dad, “Oh how different things could have turned out if you hadn’t left…” The boy frowned and had the slightest hint of a trembling lip when Myles came back in. “They’re perfect man. Wanna take them out?” Alex nodded and followed his friend back into the kitchen. They put all the guns into the duffle back and Myles carried it out to the car. Alex followed closely after him with the backpack containing their maps and data sheets. They packed the duffle into a small space available behind the seats without blocking the window and then tossed the backpack onto the front passenger seat. “So what do we do now? We still have…” Alex trailed off and checked his watch before continuing, “at least twenty minutes.” Myles frowned in thought and then giggled when he had an idea. “Watch Jerry Springer and try to compare the guests with students?” Alex grinned and put his arm around Myles’s shoulders as they returned to the house. “Myles, my boy, you are a genius.” When they came back into the house, Alex and Myles returned to their respective positions on the sofa. The music channel had changed and was now playing some bad show from the '90s, aimed at overly cliché teenagers. They switched the television to the first channel they saw with a talk show on it and settled down to watch the show. "So what was in the other bag in the kitchen?" Myles asked after a couple of minutes, nodding his head to the side in the direction of the kitchen. "That, good sir, is protection," Alex replied. "I got a vest from my uncles friend and your trench is in it." Myles scowled at his friend and punched him in the side. Alex flinched, still a little tender from his earlier beating, then glared at Myles. "What the fuck was that for?" He all but shrieked as he clutched his side. "Do you know how long I've been looking for that? I thought I'd lost it you asshole." Alex grumbled something about his friend being the only asshole there then drained his glass. He got up and walked out to the mini hallway to grab his Doc Martens. "Where are you going?" Myles asked. Alex came back into the room with his boots and stepped into the boots. "Seems about time to suit up," he explained bending down to do his shoes up. "Well, it that's the case, I gotta use your bathroom," Myles declared, giving a little bit of over share to the conversation. He jumped up and walked down the hallway beside the sofa. Alex walked into the kitchen and then on through to the closet by the garage door. It was the dampest, dirtiest closet that could exist in possibly the whole of the United States, and yet they had gotten the great idea to put clothes and electronics in there. They didn’t really think things through right. Alex pushed down on the handle and pulled the door open, wiping a cobweb out of the way before stepping in. He reached up and pulled a small string that in turn made the light come on. When the light came on Alex noticed there was a spider hanging right in front of him, so close that he could see the hair on the little arachnid’s body and the bends in its wiry legs. Without really thinking about it, he let out a loud scream. Not a manly brief ‘ah!’ and then going back to business, but a full on girl shriek and even a jump back to the doorway. “Are you okay?” A worried but faint voice called from the other side of the house. “Yeah… Fine,” Alex called back, not wanting to admit to his friend what he had just screamed at. He reached his hand in a little to the side and grabbed a broom, using it to swipe the spider away. He may have been a killer, a psychopath, a whatever, but Alex was still stupid and still afraid of spiders. He reached into the pockets of a leather jacket and pulled out some gloves and a baseball cap, then grabbed a thin black hoodie from a hook at the back. After shaking everything quickly to rid the clothing of anything that could be hiding in it, Alex turned the light off and left the closet. He walked over to the kitchen table and dropped his baseball cap and hoodie on it, but opted to pull on his black fingerless gloves instead. As he flexed his fingers to get the gloves fitting just right, Alex heard his friend’s footsteps approach behind him. “All good man?” He asked in passing. “Yeah, all good screamer,” Myles replied, adding the little name as an awful attempt at humour. He smirked at joke he made and reached down to the bag containing his trench coat and the vest. He pulled open the bag and lifted everything out onto the table. Myles pulled his coat over and held it close for a minute. It may have just been a coat, but he loved it dearly after purchasing it three years ago. He set the trench coat down after his brief moment with it and pulled a bandana out of his pocket. He folded it over a few times so it formed a soft band and then tied it at the back of his head. His soft chestnut hair had gotten unruly over the last few months, so he needed some way to keep it out of his eyes. He took off his boots and then started to put them back on again, tucking his black jeans into the shoes this time. In this time, Alex had tucked his sweater into his jeans and began undoing the Velcro on the side of the bullet proof vest. He pulled the protective clothing over his head and pulled it down so it would sit comfortably, then did up all of the straps. It fit a lot better than he though, Alex had expected it to dig into him and be a pain in the ass. He was relieved that it was working out well. When it was all done up he rolled down his sweater sleeves and lifted his baseball cap, pulling it on back to front, but with the rim on the cap by his neck. He hated all those kids - well, jocks mainly - who wore their caps back to front with the cap by their eyebrows at the front and the rim jutting out. Alex looked to Myles who had finished putting his shoes on. “Are we ready to go?” He asked, pulling on his jacket. Myles nodded in reply and got up, putting his trench coat on. “All ready,” he replied, saluting and leaving the room with his friend. Myles turned off the television in the next room as Alex zipped up his hoodie to cover the vest he was wearing beneath and then the two boys looked at each other. There was a moment of silence as they just stared before Myles broke it by saying, “We’re really doing this, aren’t we? After all the planning and waiting… It’s finally happening.” Alex nodded slowly at first, but picked up gradual speed as he became more confident in his answer. “Yeah we are. Zero Day has finally arrived. And y’know what, bud? It’s gonna be the best day of our lives.” Myles grinned back happily at his friend and tossed the remote onto the couch. “Are you going to tell anyone about her?” He asked suddenly, looking at his friend’s dead mother. Alex frowned for a moment, genuinely thinking about his answer. He could call someone and say there was an accident, but then he risked being caught out before he could have his fun. “Nah. I think I’m going to leave her there, it’ll be more amusing to think someone will find her in a few hours, or days, or something.” No more was said as Myles walked to the doorway and exited the house. Alex was a little more hesitant though. He looked at his mother’s body for another few minutes and bit down softly on his bottom lip. He was at a mental loss about her. It wasn’t that he was regretful for having killed his mother; there was just something about her eyes that was starting to creep him out. He quickly returned to their kitchen and pulled a towel out of the dryer. When he went back into the living room, he laid it over the top of her body and her head. “I wish I could say I’m sorry…” He sighed, before walking away from her and exiting the house. Alex left the front door and slammed it behind him. He was in two minds about whether or not to lock it. There was no point really, was there? Instead of locking it, he took his keys from his jeans pocket and dropped them on top of a plant pot by the door. It had been a long time since anything had been grown or even planted there, so the bright key rings and shining keys stood out on top of the soil. He jogged down the path of his front yard to the sidewalk – a rather difficult task considering the vest he had on weighing him down – and got into the passengers seat of Myles’s truck. As soon as he was in the car, the engine was started and it pulled off from the side of the road. The two boys were quiet until they pulled out of the street Alex lived on and he took his backpack from the space beside him. “Okay, recall time,” he announced. Myles groaned, “Al, I know this like the back of my hand, give up already.” He threw in a rather dramatic eye roll and sigh to give emphasis to his boredom with it. Alex looked at his friend through the side of his eye and scolded, “I don’t care how well you know it. You’re reciting it because so you don’t fuck up.” He pulled the file out of his backpack and flipped it to a page of maps. There were two at the front that had routes highlighted on them in yellow, then another route on each in orange. “Okay, go,” Alex instructed. “With all this I would think you wouldn’t trust me, Al,” Myles observed. “I do trust you; I just don’t trust your memory. Now will you go?” Myles sighed then turned left onto the highway before launching into the plan he had made almost a year before. “Okay, so we go into the school through the science block corridor. It’s usually empty and so we shouldn’t be seen. Then we turn a sharp left into the old physics room since it’s not used in the mornings. There we leave some weapons and I take one of the propane bombs to the library. Leave it in there beside a table and come out to wait in the history and geography hallways. About 5 minutes later it should go off. When everyone runs out, I open fire with the Mac-11, and from there start to do all the classrooms on that corridor. Plan B, if the bomb fails to detonate I just infiltrate the room with some pipe bombs and go about shooting. Sir, yes fucking sir,” Myles recited. Alex gave him a pat on the head, “Good Myles-y.” The boy swatted his friends hand away and continued to drive. “You’re a douche bag, you know that right?” He asked Alex. Alex laughed, “All part of my charm.” Myles let out a small laugh and pulled off of the highway into a smaller road. “So genius, do you know yours?” Alex nodded and closed his file, “But of course.” Myles looked at him briefly before directing his attention to the road again. “Not going to recite it?” He asked, surprised Mr Military was being quiet. “Nope, I trust my memory.” Myles laughed and shook his head, “Yep, glorified douche bag.” Alex pushed a button on the radio and brought it to life. He knew the CD that was in, and flipped it forward to a certain number. “Thought we could have a little mood music.” Myles turned sharply to look at his friend with something that resembled horror, “What the fuck?” Alex rolled his eyes; his friend obviously would take things the wrong way. “It’s Andrew WK assbag, stop being so dramatic.” A song began to come from the speakers to each side of the boys. Alex threw his legs up onto the dashboard to sit comfortably for the rest of the journey. Within minutes, Myles was pulling into the schools turn-off and round to the staff parking lot. “D-Day,” Alex grinned.