“There was a time for heroes, once. A time where single good person would bring out the best in people. That one hero, that animal, super in every way, could have held the earth in his hands and crushed it with ease. He could leap canyons with a half-step, drop a brick building with his pinky, and change the weather just with the sound of his voice. Instead of evil and villainy, he created Earth’s mighty defense force with twelve of his personally picked heroes to take the helm whenever he couldn’t. Inspiration for us to do better, passion for those who needed a little boost, and justice for those who stood against their fellow citizens! He had it all and he gave his all for all of us,” The heavily clown make-uped news reporter moose on the television adjusted his glasses, the channel 1337 news logo in the background filled in behind his massive girth, “And today we honor our planet’s first super hero a decade after his passing to-.”
The television switched off, as the old coyote leaned over the week old newspaper as his cigarette smoke still rose from the overfilled ashtray. He spat something black and slimy over the embers, and still it rose to fill the ceiling with its tasteless ash, “You’re going to be late,” he coughed and hacked into his fist, the resin painting the tips of fur hanging above his lip.
The rabbit at the far end of the counter just sat silently sipping her coffee. Her demeanor was unconcerned, and her sips were hummed with quiet licks of satisfaction. The dinner wasn’t open yet, the tiny timepiece over the kitchen window showed the time to be half past four, and the shadowed pitch blackness outside confirmed it. There were some street lamps on in the distance, with a toppled and crush public trash cans in the streets where cars lined the sidewalks dully or dead.
He took a hollow breath, his lungs long broken and overtaxed, “Charon?”
“I heard you, Gene,” Charon continued to stare off into nothingness, sipping away unconcerned. Her ears slightly slackened in her freshly purple dyed hair as her yellow clove fingers tapped the salt shaker next the menu stand, “They were mandated to stay for another sixteen hour shift.” She reported, brushing the salt shaker over to its pepper companion.
Gene snorted with all the annoyance he could muster, taking another puff of his cig. “At least I get another hour with a heroine in a bikini I can gaze over at.” He eyed her, a firm grin etched through his tired form taking in her costume of a logoed one piece swimsuit and fishnet leggings that revealed every curve she had to offer. All of which she held out just enough through her trench coat that no one needed to imagine what she was packing.
His comment alone made the rabbit raise an eyebrow, the first time that morning giving him her full attention. “Top-10 wears two gold pasties and a thong, you’re not getting much,” she lazily informed, setting her cup on the counter top, “Skin tight is usually the bare minimum requirement.”
Gene moved his smoke stick away from his mouth as he gave it a quick arm rub to smear off the blackness building up, it did little help even when he took an extended draw from it adding more to what he tried to remove, “She the one on the United Hero Society with the giant disco shoulder pads and ten inched spike heels?” he asked, his distant stare scanning through all the heroines he might have seen on television or magazine that he always claimed to only have because he loved to read the articles.
“And hated by women everywhere,” Charon added with a yawn. “A true super heroine of our time.”
There was a thump at the side door, drawing the two’s attention. Three laughing, leather clad, drunks thumped on the glass again as they each put their full bodyweight into opening the locked dinner door. Sighing, Gene flicked his cigarette away, cupping his hands around his muzzle to give his voice some added volume, “WE’RE CLOSED. COME BACK LATER.”
The chicken at the front of the group, twitched his head to the side, his wattle waving about with each movement he made. “But we’re hungry now old man!” He shouted through the glass.
His two friends, a bulky badger and a dirty pink bowed hyena, stepped back and rushed the door, snapping it off its hinges with a loud bang and shattering glass. “Yea, we’re hungry now,” the badger spat, cracking his knuckles, “Right, Gauge?”
The hyena chuckled and giggled madly, “You know it, Lars babe.”
Smoothing out his comb, the chicken shoved the two of them aside, a death glare haunting his calmed voice. “Will you two clam it, I don’t need a commentary every place we bust up,” adjusting his oversized leather jacket he kicked one boot up on the counter where Gene was standing at his full height, “I have an appointment I don’t want to be at on an empty stomach. Get in the kitchen and make us a sandwich special.”
Gene was not a large coyote. He was more lanky and dwarfish to most paterions that walked through his doors. He had both experienced and seen things that would bring any lesser being to their knees. As he stood there, noncompliant to the commanded request, his fingers tightened into a well-practiced fist. He glared over at the rabbit casually observing the exchange, sipping her coffee like normal. Catching his stare, she shrugged, “Call the police, if it ain’t super, I ain’t touching it.”