I drove the slender spike into his brain, up through the eye socket and deep into the grey matter.

Making sure to wiggle, stir it around a little, didn't want forensics recovering anything, especially these days. The kid should've listened when I told him this was a bad idea. I'd warned him, but then the kid didn't have an inside track, I did. He'd no conception of the forces working against him, how slim his chances were from the get go. Now here he was, twitching and gurgling as life slipped from his body. His remaining eye rolling around in his stupid, naive head, red blood burbling at the corners of his mouth. The corpse, a shell, convulsing, the last gasps of a dying breed. Their time was over, they were fighting a losing battle, and we’d already won the war. I felt no regret, why should I? If he'd gotten through, his gang wouldn't have let him live anyway. Auggies, ha, sub-human cyborgs. Wouldn't be long now, their numbers dwindling by the day. Nothing to be done, just stop this stubborn war and finish wiping them out. They always fought back, they were so primal; they couldn't help it, even when there was no hope. A clinging tenacity that made them an infuriating thorn in our side.

Ah, here it comes now, the dying breath, a gurgle, I watched the light go out in the kid's good eye, and idly wondered where he'd gotten his augments. No one would sell to their kind, these implants must be made in some back-alley workshop, but he didn't look like he had money for the black market sellers. What he was running inside his head was illegal as hell, not that it would make a difference to the hacksaw surgeons. Auggies, shit, they were all alike, trying to blend in, pretending to be real humans, hoping we wouldn't notice. Well, they were wrong, we'd noticed. I pulled the spike out with a sucking sound, sliding it back into my sleeve holster. If this one was here, more were around, bird in the hand and all that, to steal an aphorism. I peeked out the alley, glancing around the neon street, garish colours harsh against the black night sky. I was looking for eyes, you know, the ones paying a little too much attention, too alert, a watcher. Junkyard dogs waiting for a chance to strike back at the overseers; clippers, like me, were a favourite target. I should call this in, but quietly, make sure no one came in sirens blasting, didn't want to wake up the whole neighbourhood. Better to keep it down, quiet-like. Tapping on my wrist, sent a quick coded message, data squirting over Link to my district overseer. The reply, just a chirp and affirmative icon, he agreed, this mess would be cleaned up quietly, and quickly. The scrubbers were already out, must’ve been a hectic night on patrol.

I stood under a balcony overhang, waiting at the dim entrance to the alley. Flickering neon shone highlights on the black transport as it pulled up, dull reflections on its matte finish; thick, midnight tinted windows. A few faces watching from the cross-street above, pulled back from their windows, afraid our judgmental gazes would single them out; take an official interest. Wrist ping again, the signal from the mop crew that the mess was cleaned up. Slowly, I walked back to the Office of Oversight, gravel crunching beneath my boots, already dreading the paperwork. My record of events would be quickly rubber-stamped, marked down as another augmented terrorist eliminated through the heroic actions of yours truly. Another great victory in the war against auggies.