For Eli "Tucco" Wallach. Thank you you beautiful dirty SOB.
It was always going to come down to this.
There they stood, The Trio, ready for one last hurrah, one last battle. Fitting after all their journey's, all the wars and all the blown up bridges that this would come to end in one final graveyard, like the ones they had buried so many of their enemies in before. Only this time, they were trying to bury each other. They say the end of the journey for gold and glory can divide any cause, any brotherhood. This was no different; the journey was over and now only one of The Trio could survive. With that knowledge, they took one last glimpse at each other and began to move away. All except for one; he instead remained perfectly still, or as still as one man could while he shakes like a leaf.
You only had to take one look at this lunatic to see the rage in his eyes. For him this was more than just gold and glory; this was about revenge, pride, or at least whatever he thought those two things were in his own dark madness. The gold and glory was just a bonus to be added on after he fulfilled his principles. These principles had been forged in the place he once called home, a beautiful place rapid with crime because that was the way the townspeople liked it. It was inevitable that he, the son of a thousand fathers, all bastards like him, would thrive in that town. It was a place he learned how to survive nuclear explosions, fitting as he was the one of The Trio most likened to a cockroach. But he wasnít a cockroach, he wasnít good, and he wasnít bad. No, this man was Ugly to the bone, a fact that remained regardless of what side of the law he was on.
To his left moved a traitor. He didnít look like a traitor, what with his solid appearance and eyes that a stranger would dare call angelic. But those eyes only existed to hide the lack of warmth in his soul, an evil that exists in even darker depths than his Ugly brother. For this man, brotherhood was just a means to an end, an opportunity to use men to get him to the gold and glory he so desired. Now there was nothing left for his brothers besides cold hard elimination. Another look in his eyes showed nothing angelic; in fact it showed nothing at all except an eye on the prize. Nothing but Bad.
To his left walked the last of the brotherhood. From a distance a man would say that this was the image of a hero; imposing, cool, charismatic. In reality he was a hero by default, due to the fact that he wasnít a heartless mercenary or an unstable wildcard. But he wasnít much more than that either; just a man with a cool demeanor who looked like someoneís idea of a hero. Whether he was actually a hero or not was something for louder minds to determine themselves down the road. For now though, he was the de facto Good, if only because itís better for gold and glory to be in the hands of appearance than a traitor and a lunatic.
Finally the movement seized, and a triangle formed between The Trio. There was a buzz in the silence around them, like the anticipation of a crowd thirsting for combat. All three had felt it so many times before in so many different graveyards over the years. But now, there were only two graves left to dig, and one grave that held the ultimate goal. Oh yes, this was a Mexican stand off for the ages, a battle that hardened reporters in their marriage beds, that children would remember for years to come. The anticipation was killing all three of them. And yet, they all stood and took one last look.
Thoughts raced through each of their minds. The Uglyís mind danced from thoughts of the long crawl here, the betrayal of one of the only people he had ever trusted in his life, the thirst for blood that he couldnít quench. The thirst The Bad had was for that treasure waiting for him once he disposed of these two men who were foolish enough to believe he ever believed in them in the first place. And The Good remained the blank slate he was always did, so much that you could wonder if maybe he was the real reason The Ugly twitched like man under constant electrocution. But the time to solve motivations was over. The only thing left to do was to finish the job.
Gazes darted back and forth, each man ready to empty every bullet they had left to get this over yet. And yet they waited, patient like hunters trying to get their game in the right spot at the right time. Sweat poured off them as if the sun was ready to crash down from the heavens. Time draws near. The silence was now a deafening buzz as if a crowd was cheering The Trio on. And there they stood, unable to hear anything except the twitches and breathing of their enemy. The Ugly smiled a smile that no man could describe, while The Bad grinned and The Good stood there with nothing on his face. There was no going back now; the brotherhood was dead, the goal was all that remained. Time was up.
And in that moment seconds turned into hours, and each man coiled themselves in attack position. It was over now, and finally they and the rest of the world would know who the better man was. Gazes flew like darts, each man waiting for one to make the first move, the first mistake. Sweat dripped, heartís galloped like a Calvary, and minds raced. The Ugly continued to smile, a look of excitement and horror that could only be that of a man relishing the thought of feeling fear for potentially the last time. And with that, he and his former brotherhood took one last look at each other. This was it; a Trio dead, a Shield broken.
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