Kyler waited in the hangar absently holding his pistol at his side. The gash above his eye had stopped bleeding, but the half-dried splatter pulled at the scruff on his cheek as he clenched and unclenched his jaw out of habit. He needed another hit an hour ago, and he could feel it in the way his eyes felt like they were being pulled back into his skull by cork removers.
A low, stuttery sound overhead like thick rubber in a fan blade heralded the passing of a transport. It landed one hangar over—not for him. Wide, sharp sunbeams pounded the floor. They gave form to the churning fumes filling every cubic meter between the earth and the magnetosphere. Everyone knew the air was poison, but it was easier to breathe when you didn’t have to see it.
It must be sunrise. The first 15 minutes of the day was the only time you could see the disk of the sun.
His transport was here. Just as the hatch opened, Oriss made eye contact with him and ran up from across the hangar.
“Kyler, I’ve been looking all over—” He stopped cold, seeing Jin inside the shuttle.
Kyler didn’t say a word. He stepped in, shut the hatch, and left Oriss in the already-fading sunlight.
Notes: I used an image as a writing prompt for this piece. I found it on page 103 of my copy of The Art and Soul of Blade Runner 2049. You may be able to find the image on the artist’s ArtStation page. Image by George Hull, used with permission.