23

23

A Chapter by CharlyeMonroe
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“Richie is looking good,” Jane, the first words spoken on the car ride back.

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“Richie is looking good,” Jane, the first words spoken on the car ride back. Your head was wrapped on your brother’s play, his deck stacked and ready for the war planes to fly, you would serve as ambassador to the field. You hadn’t felt it before, a calm that melted over you, your antenna picking up the same frequency, the rivalry was gone. In his face you saw something solid, the same eyes staring back at you when you looked in the rearview mirror, the trials of time, you’d lived long enough.

“What do we have in the trunk?”

“Bump.” Jane

“How much bump?”

“Enough, what are you thinking about Stempy?” Ren “Picking a fight.”

“F**k yeah.” Kaite

“I know what you mean, jelly bean.” Jane

“So flip a coin.” Ren

“The heads already have it.”

“But the body is willing and able.” Kaite

“Our hearts are in it.” Ren

“Yeah.” Kaite

“Jane?” You

“What am I supposed to be the voice of reason, let’s finish off the f*****g family, they’re downtown now.” Jane

“Must be nice.” Ren

“Why hasn’t anyone gone for our houses?” You

“Speak for yourself, I haven’t been home in a couple months.” Ren

“We’ve got the neighborhood locked down.” Jane

“If you didn’t notice this is a f*****g war, Barty.” Kaite

“It sure as hell ain’t no f****n disco.” Jane

“Disco” Kaite

“Well General, they’re both downtown but we’ve got a multi front assault on our hands.” Ren

“This is a cold war.”

“Two sides to every story.” Ren

“Well we’re just gonna erase that story.”

“Turn up the f*****g radio,” Ren. The troops were on the ready; you turned the dial till speakers rattled with the roar of a guitar rift, the drums pounding. You rolled down the windows and took the top down. The backseat smoking, Ren clutched a small cigar between her teeth. The sun in your rearview mirror while you sped down the highway. A golden wave thrown into the air, the sand had spread over the shoulder, your ride brushing it off in a line. Twanging fingers bounced to out the rhythm on the neck of the guitar blasting out of the radio. You rung your hands on the steering wheel, Kaite and Jane whipping their hair in excess with the whirling wind. It was frenzy. Natives shouldn’t play with fire and you breathed napalm. You were phoenix in the fumes, blue flame growing, the skies blackening. The glow was welcome on the other side of the plane. Who doesn’t like pretty girls anyway?

“What do you want to carry?” Kaite shouted up through the breeze.

“I mean we’re going in guns blazing right?”

“Your shot is pretty good, but you’ve got to be tactical.” Jane “Then she won’t hold down the trigger.” Ren

“Five shot bursts” Kaite

“You know it. I’ll take the Bullpup. Turn a m**********r inside out and upside down with that one, and make them twist and shout.” Jane

“I want the, twin tactics.” Kaite

“Why two?” Ren

“Because it’s badass. Plus the sawed off.” Kaite

“Yee haw,” you yelled out.

“I want a P90.” Ren

“You’ve gotta carry the weight.” Jane

“And then some.” Ren

“What’s left?”

“We’ve got heat, what do you want?” Kaite

“A Heartbreaker.”

“Four of them and something explosive.” Ren

“We’ve got something custom for you when we get there. It’ll put some holes in the foundation.” Kaite

“You girls are good to me.”

“Goddamn right.” Jane, “You’re special.”

“You’re gonna fall in love.” Kaite

“Can’t keep falling out of it these days.”

The headlights were on but you didn’t need them down here, the wattage burning like three suns all around you. Neon, concrete and glass. The few old brick buildings falling and rising next to sharpened steel skyscrapers in an array of mutations on the design. Shops sat at every level, something you could buy or sell or steal around every corner, residencies high out of sight, and offices tucked in every crevice. Somehow the entertainment was lacking. This district was for the movers and shakers and mainstays. Meyer Hunters reclaimed his headquarters downtown after the destruction of his home in Our Lady.

“It’s all repurposed space, so we’re gonna have to beat through a few rounds till we find what we’re looking for. That top floor stuff is definitely bullshit on this level.” Ren

“Not enough recon to find out where he’s sleeping?” You

“Repurposed means he could have a few houses in there. The top floors are still ballrooms and offices, mostly empty space thought we could bring down the roof if we really wanted to.” Ren

“Welcome to the Hotel Hunts.” Jane

“Pretty much. Too bad all that real‐estate is going to waste, no one is buying a damn thing from him. It’s a mystery” Ren

“Maybe he’s just not selling.”

“That’s funny,” Jane, “someone’s always buying.” You made a block around the property line, sizing up the entrance in the traffic of downtown. The cars passed in stop and go fashion, but activity at the door was pretty minimal, a few blacked out SUVs parked curbside looked empty, but you couldn’t be positive, might as well katy bar the door in the commotion, your weapon willing for the job and very able of making a mess of things. You parked away from the front. The parking garage attached to the Hunts was under construction still, the sub structure dug out and the crew toiling away on the upper floors. The gear wasn’t too weighty, you were well prepared for the fight, light packs for the ammunition, you had holsters exposed for anyone looking, the other girls held strong arm steady.

“The ole in through the out door,” Ren flashed you a wink and gave you a hip bump.

“I mean, if they’re gonna give it up like that, you’ve gotta take it” Jane. You took the ramp down into the garage, nothing stirring on the radar, it was perfect dark, the electricity not installed except over the doors, green exit signs pointing your way through the maze. The deeper down you went your eyes adjusted to the atmosphere. You listened to the footsteps around you, small grinding stones in each step, the third set of exit signs in view.

“Disco.”

“We don’t say that anymore,” Kaite giggled.

“Shut the f**k up.”

“Disco is long dead B, Dixie killed it,” Ren.

“Hold up is the new hotness.” Jane

“Hotness, wow ya’ll is so hip.”

“F****n right.” Kaite

“We need some new slang.”

“Speak on it and it is.” Ren

“Wax with that jive a*s s**t ya dig.”

“Ya dig.” Kaite

“So how are we gonna do this?” Jane

“The kids, the dog, everybody dyin, we’re making a statement here.” Ren

“F**k with me.” Kaite

“Exactly.” Double doors at the threshold to the underground, the locks hadn’t been installed yet, the countdown in your head, three, two, one. You pulled open the right door, Ren on the left, Jane and Kaite with rifles down the hallway. The ductwork running over the ceiling, no one in sight, the light an eggshell hue, bulbs caged behind iron bars spaced equally between doors leading to the unknown. There wasn’t much sound down here, still running on power from the grid, this was plumbing, wonder what would happen when you turned the water off.

“Let us?” Jane

“Let us.” Yourself and Jane in the front, two by two down the hallway, Kaite kicked in a door down the walk.

“I always wanted to do that,” Kaite. A rush of cold air spilling out of the chasm.

“Damn, you f*****g kicked the hinges off.” Ren

“These legs aren’t just for walking.” Kaite

“And you’re part Asian so you’ve got that goin for ya,” Ren. She was already inside the room, her gun scanning the interior. There was a faint green light coming from inside. Jane posted by the door while you and Ren investigated. “We found the honey pot.” Servers, rows and rows of servers filled the room. It was bigger than you first thought; each door along this side of the hallway brought you into this little heaven. “I’m gonna check the other side” Ren turned out of the room, excitement in her step, she brushed by Jane, you heard the crash of boot into door. “F**k!”

“It’s harder than it looks,” Kaite squeed squenching up her face. Two more raps and then nothing.

“Yup!” Ren

“Lets burn this m**********r down. Jane open up the floodgates.”

“Rodger,” Jane. You sent a shot from your cannon, the round ripped through a wall of plastic wiring and blinking lights. No explosion.

“What the f**k?” You turned to Kaite who was rapidly moving towards the door. You didn’t take time to question, her hands covering her ears on the way out, you hurried.

“Those shots are kind of a grab bag, I’m betting on that being a,” an explosion ripped through the air, the hallway shuddering, the sound of crashing racks of electronics. A warm wind belched out of the open mouth. “A delay round. There are slugs, contacts, and delays. They’ll all put a hole in something, but those leave the biggest crater,” Kaite. You peaked around the corner. Two thirds of the room decimated and the other third rapidly being consumed in a cloud of pulverized concrete, a dent in the heavy concrete ceiling didn’t make it through to the floor above, but it was still shattered to an amazing level, the crater on the ground almost a mirror image.

“Well we better get moving, yeah.” More explosions coming from outside the open door, machine gun fire coming a little further down. You and Kaite made short work of the rest of the towers; water was rushing over the floor from the hallway. Ren running out of the back up room, her gun at the ready, you didn’t see Jane.

“Contact!” Ren. A wall ahead of you collapsing into the path, a cloud of dust blocking the way. You hurdled over debris to a bend in the hall. Jane stood dusting herself, yards away bullet ridden piles of what used to be security mixed with razed architecture.

“Damn girl.” Kaite

“Well, they’re in the way,” Jane, “all they had were pistols and it looked like stun guns.”

“You seen any security cameras?” Ren “Not yet, they’re here though.” Jane

“Doesn’t matter we jus knocked out about 300 servers, we could leave now and they’d be fucked.”

“Upstairs.” Kaite

“Yup,” you led the charge around corners. You ripped shots off into surprised black and white clad security team members. You found the first set of stairs, bullets pinging when you opened the door, you moved out of the line of fire.

“What’s behind door number two?” Jane “F**k that s**t it’s a straight line.” Ren “I was being facetious.” Jane
“We’ve got more bullets.” Kaite

“Yeah they’re gonna keep coming.”

“They can’t hit us from here.” Kaite

“Let’s go then,” Ren ran into the stairwell. There was a small delay before shots popped echoing in the well. Jane followed after, a few shots and a body tumbled down the stairs. You and Kaite looked each other up and took off up the stairs. Kaite bounding up past you, she caught three officers in reload, knife into the neck of the first attacking with stun gun, two more shot down with pistol grip shot gun blasts to the chest and neck. You cleaned up with single shots from your rifle. The door ahead of you creaking, you kicked it open, the door slamming into a body on the other side. Kaite slipped past you, her foot collapsing the windpipe of the officer; follow up shot spreading brains over the ground. You followed quickly taking down another sleeping on the fight. You broke his arm mid way through the raise to let off a round. His gun falling, you caught it and put three rounds down the inside of his leg. A shriek of pain and you paused on the killing blow. Jane and Ren hadn’t made their appearance on the scene.

“Where’s the wizard?” Blood was pooling fast, you hit something important, you could see the life rolling into the back of his head, color draining rapidly as he went slack. You put one round in is head, he wasn’t coming around.

“We’re streaking!” Jane’s head through the door, glee spread across her face, the door closing again. Kaite grinned at you; she spun on her heels and was out into the stairs. A lightening once over, you pulled key card and cell phone off of the corpse and were back in the game. You caught up to them on the lobby floor. The hornet’s nest was under your feet; you laid down suppression fire listening to an increasing chatter coming from below.

“We’ve got to bomb these stairs, Ren do the honors.”

Kaite covered the top route. You pulled Jane into your position. You threw open the door onto the lobby. You heard panic on the floor; it would be a little while before any more reinforcements came from below or above. You held tight, Jane, Kaite and Ren spilled out of the stairwell and sprinted a little past you. The wall rocked and gave way like a hollow eggshell, smoke flooding out into the hallway.

“We’ve got to keep moving this is not an exit.” Ren “To the atrium.” Jane

“Lead us.” Ren stayed pressed to the wall. You could hear movement but no one was in sight. At the end of the hall way the sparkles of marble floor was wide open ahead of you. Bodies moving past the opening rapidly, it was a flight. Charge. You fired a shot from the blaster into the room, the shell hitting a moving shadow, body bursting like a water balloon on contact. The four of you pressed forward faster. Another round sailed into a column, no explosion. The area was clearing fast; the shell game was about to begin. The cars lined on the outside, the king was leaving the castle. You scanned quickly trying to catch a sign, let one more round fly towards the glass façade. The round bowling over a pair of running security officers. You recognized him instantly, hair buzzed on the sides and short box top cut. His face screwed in a confident grin, skin leaking and eyes wavering on contact with yours. You lined a shot. It split the glass and rocketed out into the street.

“Go!” You sprinted after Meyer Hunters, gunfire coming quickly, you were covered. Bodies falling in your peripheral, you emptied your clip into the scurrying guards fleeing the front door. The entire front of the building was collapsed, you ran over the carpet of glass crunching shards under your feet. One SUV down, your slug punctured the engine. You saw the two surviving cars breaking through traffic over the sidewalk out of dodge; you wouldn’t put one down range right now. The other three riders stepping out of the rubble to your side.

“That’s them, right?” Kaite

“Yup.”

“How many cars?” Ren

“Dos, you have an idea of where they’re going?”

“Doesn’t matter right about now, traffic’s so bad and they’re shining.” Ren

“Mount up, lets finish this.” The second wave showed itself opening fire immediately. You dove between cars, your team scattered in the ambush. You stayed low to the ground; all around you car glass shattered, those still caught in the crossfire scurried to get out of the way, the wounded drove over the fallen trying to escape with their lives. You saw Kaite pinned down by a shooter. You took aim and let fly with your cannon. A well‐placed volley and you scatter five gunners to bits. In the confusion three more fell. Your second clip almost out you slung your rifle over your back and moved on pistols in hand. Gunfire came in bursts. The girls were dropping opponents left and right. A peek into a car mirror you saw six men pinned down where they were making their last stand. No bullets coming your way, you crept along the sides of cars going for the flank. A speeding car in the corner of your vision, you shot out the tires and rolled out of the way. It slammed into another pinned car. The chain reaction pushing vehicles into a pile, the smell of gasoline and tires filling the air over gunpowder. Five shooters left. You set fire to a puddle of gas running along the ground and moved out of the way, pressing closer for position, a car exploding a way from you. The gunfire ceasing for a second. You looked under the cars. They played the game well; you couldn’t see any of your friends’ feet on the ground. You were nearly there, just a few more yards. The men had reloaded, only four stood now, oblivious to your tightening the noose around their necks. Both guns drawn. You let fly into the side of your prey. Bodies popping in place, you were indiscriminate in your aim. Parts of skull flying into the air. You checked your left and right all clear. “Ollie, Ollie oxen free!” you called out.

“Barty?” Jane

“Yeah, think I got the rest of them.”

“F**k yeah you did,” Ren. She climbed out of a car a few feet away. “No f*****g mercy.” She came up on the side of you. She dropped a cigarette into a puddle of insides pooling around you. Jane and Kaite joined your side.

“You still want to do this?” Jane

“This is Meyer’s most unlucky lucky day.” An explosion shook the ground. The top floors of the tower exploded, Time slowed down, broken glass and beams fell down to the street. You grabbed Kaite and took off in the direction of your car. Jane and Ren close on your tail. Shrapnel cut into the side of your face and arms, you didn’t look back as more blasts broke through the air. You made it into the front seat. Ash and debris filled the air. The rest of the girls filling the back seat. You started the engine and streaked down the side street. It was still relatively clear, the three of them turned around looking out of the back window. The skies were a flooding with the same milk blue you saw from the windows of your car the day of your kidnapping. It was nearly opaque when you were inside of it. You raced to escape the dust and into the outside. Ripping through side streets you were spit out onto a service road leading towards the blue line tracks. You put the car in park and leaned over the back seat, “any survivors?”

“What the f**k was that?” Ren
“The blame game, we gotta get these m***********s now.” You

“I think I’m alright,” Jane inspecting the cuts on her face and neck in a compact mirror. “Yeah just scratches, looks like I’ve been in a fight.”

“Is that them?” Ren was looking out the passenger window. “F**k, that’s them,” she was laughing.

“Most unlucky lucky day.” Kaite

“Got em.” They were moving in convoy out of the city, still only two cars, they rolled past you, no turn signal, they turned onto the highway. “Ready?” You put the car in drive.

“Crank it,” Ren. Pedal to the floor the tires spinning out, your weapon in the passenger seat. The road was empty on your side, you could see the tail lights in the distance, the sound of clips being loaded in the back seat, Ren climbed over the armrest into the front seat, her foot tripping the knob to the radio. The volume blasting handclaps and a steady drum beat, guitars over the top. You let the top retract. The air rushing by as you closed to twenty feet. Ren stood steadying herself on the windshield with your gun in her hands. She let one go through trunk of the SUV. Delay. The doors blown off, you watched it break up flying into the air in a flaming ball. The lead car swerving as you sped past the wreck trying to pull along side the front‐runner. Your riders letting bullets fly into the SUV. It was bullet proof and you were out of artillery rounds. They cut off their lights and swerved off the road into the sand, the turn so abrupt they were up on two wheels. You took your chance. In a second you flipped your ride onto their side, your hood under their tires, you forced the truck over onto its side. The noise was loud enough to drown out the music. You slammed on your breaks, watching the massive truck flip over and over again rolling on its side across the desert. Finally it came to rest about fifty yards away, the break lights still on red and car horn blaring.

“Well, everybody out,” you held your pistol, checked your other side arm to make sure there were still bullets. The rest of the squad was locked and loaded. You approached cautiously, a door opening, Kaite let off a round into the emerging person. “I’d stay still if I were you,” you yelled out to the car for anyone listening. A body flung out in the tumble lay on the ground missing a leg.

“Snail trail,” Ren pointed to a streak of earth by the tailgate, someone was trying to leave the party. You let off a round into its lower torso. “I’m pretty sure that was an a*s shot. Hey! Did Barty just shoot you in the a*s.” No reply, the figure kept trying to crawl away.

“Meyer is that you?” Kaite. You were close enough; you fired a round next to his head. The body froze.

You ordered him to roll over. It was him. Thin‐rimmed glasses glowed red in the reflection of the taillights as he stared up into your faces.

“What do you want? Anything.” He let out a cough, He winced in pain trying to bring himself up to a seat, collapsing over onto his side, “It’s all yours, I’ll call the dogs off. Cliff will listen to me. If not we can be partners.”

“Told you, you shot him in the a*s.” Ren

“Ren, Kaite, help Meyer up. We’re going for a ride.” You

“Oh, I love these moonlight rides.” Ren

“Blood moon,” Kaite howled. They got him to his feet, little struggle, Kaite kissed him on the cheek before sticking her knife through his soft pallet. “I didn’t want to hear him talk”

“Wow, that must really hurt.” Jane, “I think we have some rope.” The walk back was filled with whimpering and gurgles.

“Now Meyer, I don’t know what you were going to offer me but you see what we’re doing now.” You tightened a noose around his neck Ren and Kaite sat in the back seat with the soon to be late Meyer Hunters between them. You gunned the engine and sped out deeper into the sand. “Time to walk the plank” They stood him up on his knees and turned him out the back of the car.

“Godspeed,” Jane. He tumbled out. You made a handbrake turn and drifted over the salt in your mirror you watched his body bounce the rope growing taught. Your turn reached a full u before you were almost out of line. The fall didn’t kill him, the noose tight enough to keep him fighting. You sped in his direction .

“And on your left you’ll see Meyer Hunts,” you passed him; Meyer was gaining his footing, All the girls heads turned around towards the body now on its feet. There was plenty of rope, but it was almost to full extension. In the rearview mirror you watched Meyer’s head fly into the air, his body dropping to the ground. You pulled back up onto the highway and sped off towards home.

“Funny, I'm hungry now.”


© 2013 CharlyeMonroe


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Added on January 16, 2013
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Author

CharlyeMonroe
CharlyeMonroe

San Francisco, CA



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Writer/Artist/M**********r I'm from America, all of it. Monotheist, believer in the one true G-D Every poem is a love poem. more..

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