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Fandom: Once Upon A Time In Mexico
Title: "Monday's Experts" Drabbles
Rating: PG for language.
Disclaimer: I don't own the characters, I don't own the movie, I don't make the money.
Notes: This is a series of drabbles (all exactly 100 words) inspired by the song "Monday's Experts". The song is about the people who second-guess what's happened in a situation from the position of hindsight.

"Monday's experts
Hear them talkin' in the tearoom,
In the workshop, in the office,
Talkin' all around the place
Monday's experts
Yeah, they've always got the good oil.
Pity you can't put a bet on
At the finish of a race."

(Mick Thomas, "Monday's Experts")


I should have listened to my father. He told me not to trust the gringos. "Never trust a one of them," he'd tell me, on his occasional visits where he'd been deported again. So I thought I was being smart, staying here in Mexico, building up a business.

I thought I was being so smart, taking only a fifth the amount of money that CIA agent offered. "A sum we both can live with," I told him. He must have been planning to kill me even then. I'm surprised he didn't laugh in my face. Probably laughed himself silly later.


Shooting Marquez wasn't the mistake. Shooting Marquez was never the mistake. The mistake was letting the bastard live.

I was always too soft-hearted. Bucho was a bully. I let him have me because I didn't want problems. He had his fill and walked away, no damage done. Didn't know it meant he rated me as a posession. I didn't discover that until he burned down my bookstore. Bastard.

You'd think I'd have learned. I didn't realise how badly I'd messed things up until Marquez took the gun and aimed it at me.

After that, there wasn't time for regrets.


Betrayal isn't a hard game. If that little rat Nicolas can succeed at it, I should be able to. I'm smart enough and I'm tougher than he is.

If I could go back and hit myself over the head for that sort of thinking, I would.

I can see where it went wrong. Now, from the perspective of the corpse on the floor, I know precisely where it went wrong. I telegraphed my punches. I underestimated my opponents. I definitely underestimated the mariachi - I think the only thing I have to comfort me from the grave is Barillo has too.


He fell into the whole thing so very easily. I expected to have to work harder to hook him. I wound up giving him hints about how uninterested I was in his schemes. It didn't feel fair.

I shouldn't have let him get to me. That dig about "What kind of cartel would have me in charge?" hurt. I lost the edge there. I started to get involved - I wanted this Norteamericano to hurt. I wasn't expecting what Barillo did, what that sadist Guevara did. But I enjoyed it.

I underestimated how long it would take for him to recover.


I walked into the whole damn mess with my eyes wide open, looking in the wrong direction. I was expecting the betrayal, but not from there. My own fault for under-rating them.

I wasn't expecting what they did.

Yeah, looking back now, I suppose the signs were there all along. She wasn't as keen on the tip-off as she should have been. She was a smart cookie, I should have looked at why she wasn't being picked for good missions.

Yeah, I made a mistake.

Look at the world through my eyes. Trust me, I learned my lesson.

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