Tranquil

Rios Rosas wasn’t a quiet neighborhood by any means.

The constant traffic sound mixing honking and engines puffing, the ever present blaring of ambulance or police sirens, the greasy laughter of low-level thugs and the occasional gang shootouts… all the way to the hotel itself, with its lovely residents spending their time screaming, partying, fucking, and generally being a pain in the ass.

Suffice to say, the place was pretty fucking lively. All those sounds mixing and mingling together in what a regular occupant would consider background noise at this point.

A constant. Familiar. Almost comforting.

It doesn’t happen often, the place being freaking Dark Meat City. But when that constant disappears, even for just a moment, it’s like a heavy blanket falls on Rios Rosas. Soft, but suffocating if left there for too long.

When Lino’s ears start ringing from the deafening silence, he stops moving, the box of old, stale Froot Loops he was feeding his cockroaches with forgotten at his feet (“Lino c’mon, those are for us!” “What? They saved our asses once, the least we can do is feed them.” “Fuck them. And fuck you too.” “You wish~” “Eat shit Lino.”). He cocks his head to the right and lets his eyes close, silent.

Vinz blinks, trying to figure out what just went missing. And when he does, he turns around and stares through the living room window.

They don’t talk. They don’t think. Even the usual pattering of thousands of bugs from hell has stopped.

For a little while, they’re just… existing. Two living beings like any other. No hope, no fear, no responsibilities. It’s just quiet. And it feels nice, kinda.

And then the spell is broken by the honking of a truck and the rude bellowing of its driver, something about damn kids jaywalking. The blanket’s lifted, and the two roommates start breathing again.

Vinz makes a sniffing sound and squints. “Lino… did you leave the stove on?”

“… Fuck!”

Then life goes on.

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