The Fine Line

01: Walking

Until the very moment the Deadly Viper Assassination Squad walked into the church, he’d almost forgotten he’d come there to kill her.

02: Waltz

Bea loved watching Bill kill a man; it was always such beautifully choreographed slaughter, like the whole world was watching his macabre dance.

03: Wishes

All she’d ever wanted was to continue on the way she was: to live for him, to kill for him, and to die for him in a blaze of blood and glory; pity how we never get what we wish for.

04: Wonder

She’d never given the Asian continent a second thought before she met Bill, but when he talked about impossibly sharp swords and men with the strength of monsters, it all seemed so fascinating.

05: Worry

When she didn’t come back from her mission on time, Bill didn’t sleep for four days.

06: Whimsy

Beatrix let her imagination run away with thoughts of Bill reading her baby bedtime stories while she gazed on lovingly from the doorway for a few moments before the blast of a shotgun reminded her why she couldn’t have it that way.

07: Waste/Wasteland

The bloody mess of mangled corpses in the lobby was nothing compared to the part of her soul where Bill used to be.

08: Whisky and Rum

Beatrix liked looking at the bottles that lined the bar at Bill’s place—he always bought expensive shit that was packaged to look like cheap shit, and it amused her.

09: War

This wasn’t war, it was slaughter, murder, bloody vengeance, the wrath of a woman scorned; this was a vendetta against all he stood for, and the atonement for all he’d taken in his ignorance.

10: Wedding

If you wanted the church and the dress and the papers and the baby and the used record store in El Paso I would have given them to you, Kiddo; I would have given you the world if you’d just asked me.

11: Birthday

B.B. didn’t understand why her mommy started crying so much when she asked if her daddy could come to her birthday party.

12: Blessing

Bea often wondered what might have happened if she hadn’t just accepted Bill’s blessings at face value, what might have happened if she had stood by the man she really wanted.

13: Bias

One of the Vipers had once asked him if it wasn’t bad business, screwing his subordinate, and Bill had responded calmly and rationally as to why it was no one’s fucking concern; Budd still had the scar.

14: Burning

He’d often seen her eyes on fire with merciless rage; it was just the first time he’d ever seen them look that way towards him.

15: Breathing

As he led the Deadly Vipers out of the church, he could have sworn he heard her—no, it must have been his imagination.

16: Breaking

Bill shattered a dozen shot glasses against the wall in a drunken rage the day he’d been shown that picture of her.

17: Belief

She had wanted so badly to believe he was sincere, that he’d be there sitting on the bride’s side and smiling and letting her know it was okay to do what she was doing; she should have known better.

18: Balloon

B.B. looked at her with big, sad eyes and asked if Daddy had stopped flapping like Emilio; Beatrix bought a bright red helium balloon to distract her.

19: Balcony

They were admiring the view of Mexican coastline afforded by Bill’s new villa when he told her in his gruff, cryptic way that it could be ‘theirs’, if she wanted.

20: Bane

Bill didn’t know why he kept going for the blondes; they always ended up being such a damn nuisance.

21: Quiet

In the silence after the gunshot her voice played itself on repeat in his head: “It’s your baby.”

22: Quirks

He took that stupid flute with him everywhere.

23: Question

There were so many things he needed to ask her, but in the end he couldn’t bear to inquire about the one thing he truly wanted to know: “Do you still love me?”

24: Quarrel

Bill had been reluctant to bring the Vipers into something that was really between him and Beatrix, but they had insisted: the Vipers wouldn’t let her get away with what she had done to him.

25: Quitting

Giving up killing had been the easy part; it was giving up Bill—shuddering inside every time Tommy touched her—that was hard.

26: Jump

She’d never actually had to jump a motorcycle onto a speeding train, but she would have if he’d asked her to.

27: Jester

His jokes were funny, in a sadistic asshole kind of way.

28: Jousting

It was a game that had been played with lances, swords, pistols, but this was probably the first time a couple of old-west-style assassins were planning to battle each other with katanas on a Mexican beach at dawn.

29: Jewel

A lot of people would’ve referred to the lanky blonde killer as a diamond in the rough; to Bill, she was a rattler in a rabbit den (she liked Bill’s euphemism better).

30: Just

Neither one of them could ever be satisfied with a bare minimum; they were all-or-nothing sort of people, and that’s probably why Bill couldn’t settle for Beatrix being anything but his.

31: Smirk

It was that damn cocky smile that drew him to her in the first place, and it was the innocent one that kept him coming back.

32: Sorrow

When she woke to find the child gone from her womb, Beatrix knew both true sorrow and rage in the same instant.

33: Stupidity

Maybe putting the love of his life in a coma in a fit of jealous rage wasn’t as good an idea as he once thought.

34: Serenade

Even the sweetest strains of love song couldn’t turn her on more than the screams of the men Bill killed for her.

35: Sarcasm

She was the only one who could get away with replying to him in such a sarcastic tone, and anyone else who called him “asshole” would’ve been shot in the teeth.

36: Sordid

Getting off on the wanton destruction of human life was as vile as a human being could get, and they wouldn’t have given up those post-slaughter fucks for anything.

37: Soliloquy

“Superman” this and “masochistic” that; God, she’d never noticed before how much he droned on.

38: Sojourn

She only half-expected El Paso to be anything more than temporary, a brief respite from the world where she craved the smell of blood, a vacation from the man she couldn’t let herself have any longer.

39: Share

She was so much like her father it made Bea break all over again.

40: Solitary

She said yes to Bobby so her daughter would have a daddy; Beatrix didn’t give a crap about being alone.

41: Nowhere

El Paso was as good as anywhere; everywhere was nowhere to her.

42: Neutral

Perhaps his lust for her clouded his impartiality, but Bill would still tell anyone who asked that Kiddo was the finest damn killer he’d ever had the pleasure of employing.

43: Nuance

After knowing him so long, Beatrix should’ve been able to hear the fine, cold edge in his voice that meant he was about to kill someone.

44: Near

It had been over four years since she’d been so close to him; close enough to smell dust and gunsmoke on his jacket, close enough to touch him, close enough to slit his throat.

45: Natural

Budd once made a crack about drapes and peroxide which resulted in a black eye from Bea; Bill just chuckled and assured him that wasn’t the case.

46: Horizon

She kept pushing that Oldsmobile towards the horizon, nothing but an address, a piece of Hanzo steel, and one last name on that list to keep her company.

47: Valiant

Beatrix called him fearless once, and Bill just smiled and told her she had more guts than he’d ever have.

48: Virtuous

They both killed a lot of people that didn’t warrant any killing on the path to revenge, but they didn’t much think about it; neither of them had ever exactly been morally upright.

49: Victory

She was crying when Bill took those five fatal steps, and he knew then that even if he’d lost her war, he’d won the only battle he ever really cared about.

50: Defeat

She had her daughter, she had her revenge, she had everything Bill had taken from her on that afternoon almost five years ago, so why was she in hysterics on the bathroom floor?

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