Mad Max - Sapphire Knight


To those of us who love the bad

guy as much as we love the hero.

Keep the knight in shining armor, I want the mobster that’ll burn the world down for me.

“Who are you?”

“Demon to some. Angel to others.”

– Promptuarium

“You’re short,” I note, reading aloud the number on the scale. “Nine point seven pounds.” It’s still strange referring to weight as pounds, rather than pounds referring to a type of currency. Americans have to alter every bloody thing to become their own.

The low-level criminal’s mouth gapes, reminding me of a fish as it screws up, sputtering, attempting to come up with an excuse. There’re few I’ll buy if any. He’s fucked.

“Hundred thousand weighs ten pounds. Everyone knows that much, bloke.” I sound posh around these imbeciles. My lips twist into a sinister smirk. I always enjoy it a bit too much when the idiots attempt to short Joker. “Boss won’t be pleased, not in the slightest.” My nose turns up as my gaze hardens, staring at the poor fool who’s going to lose his life today.

“P-please, I had no idea it was short. I swear I counted it!” he pleads, as if I’m the fool. He calls himself a gangster. I scoff at the thought. Gangsters don’t fuck up when it comes to money, and cash is what makes this world keep turning.

My hand shoots out, my grip wrapping around his backstreet tattooed neck. Leaning in, my smirk blooms into a full-blown grin. I get to kill someone today; it always makes my afternoons far more enjoyable. His face flushes, sweat beading along his brow, but my hold is too tight. He can’t squeeze a word past his fat, lying lips.

“The part about this job I favor most, is when blokes like you fuck up.” With a quick drive, I slam the back of his head into the brick pillar. This old warehouse building I conduct most of Joker’s business in is full of them. I fancied the classic, exposed brickwork when I’d first checked it out. I may kill people here, but it doesn’t mean I can’t appreciate the architecture as well.

“M-ma-mad Ma-a-a-ax,” he manages to sputter, and I laugh manically. Is that supposed to stop me? I’m no Rumpelstiltskin, and there’s no way to win against me.

“So they like to call me. Say, am I really quite mad, or simply good at what I do?” I ponder, peering at the shaking, pathetic excuse for a thug. Laughing again, because I amuse myself in these situations, I retort loudly, “Oh, right. You can’t speak!”

Chuckling darkly, I finish, “Now, I’ll make you stop breathing as well. Bye-bye, ol’ chap. Say hello to the other bloody bastards I’ve sent to hell.” At that, I continue to bash his head against the brick until blood splatters the beam crimson and runs down the man’s back. The gleam of life fades from his expression, his hold growing limp. I toss him to the floor as yesterday’s rubbish.

“Well, that was fun.” I turn toward a few of the men watching me carefully as I draw a hanky free to clean the filth from my hand. Occasionally, I’ll be caught in the moment and kill another directly after, so I understand why they’re a bit overly cautious. They never know what to expect. I’d like to believe it’s part of my charm and why they stay in line for the most part. It’s quite simple: they can do as they’re ordered or die.

“Anyone else care to short Joker? I could go again, make this a proper lesson?” I offer, and their faces pinch in panic. Bunch of saps, the idiots.

A throat clears beside me, and I snap my attention to Andre. “The next group of deposit drops will be here tomorrow.”

With a huff, I wave it off. “Figures, just when I was in the mood to fuck with another. Someone fetch me a plate of fish and chips, and if another idiot comes back with crisps, it will be their funeral.”

I’m to meet Thaddaeus—Joker to the wankers around here—for afternoon tea. Until then, I need something to hold me over. The testy Italian laughed at me the first time I requested it, and in return I punched him. We were fast friends after that sort of test. It takes a ballsy one to laugh in my face and another to take my blow. My respect for him grew and our close-knit group of friends eventually adopted afternoon tea. These Americans have no idea what they’ve been missing.