Date: Sunday, May 9th, 2010
Blitzkrieg (German, "lightning war") is an anglicized word describing all-mechanized force concentration of tanks, infantry, artillery and air power, concentrating overwhelming force and rapid speed to break through enemy lines, and once the latter is broken, proceeding without regard to its flank.
The corner of Weatherly and Charles, NYC
The streets are relatively quiet, at least the ones the silver Lotus is squealing down at this particular moment. As she rounds a corner, Vasha's tires swerve and skid before righting themselves to take the next road. It is a good thing she has chosen a relatively family oriented neighborhood to joyride through because most of the children are in bed and their parents are settled in watching television or whatever it is Americans do on a Sunday night. Perhaps something indecent.
She uses no radio, preferring the scream of the engine as her music, especially in the mood she's in. A quick pause at a stop light has her turning right again, in search of a straighter path to level the gas pedal on the floor. Perhaps a Parkway or Interstate, New Jersey… Anywhere is sounding like a slice of heaven compared to what is waiting at the place they've designated as her home.
"I'd like to report an accident at the corner of Weatherly and Charles. Oh, you're welcome. Bye!"
Smiling, Porter thumbs off his prepaid cell phone and tosses it on the seat next to him. He takes a deep breath, buckles his seatbelt, and bites down on a boxer's mouthguard. Then he looks down at his watch and waits, counting under his breath. "Four… Three… Two… Disco!"
He stomps on his stolen Oldsmobile's gas pedal. Though it's a large, heavy, airbag-less beast, the '82 Olds Royale boasts a hefty engine. In a few short seconds, Porter is heading toward a 'T' intersection at speeds that can only be described as reckless. Strangely, he's making no move to turn.
The Lotus crosses his path right on time. He hits the smaller car squarely in the side, pinning it between the Oldsmobile's bumper and the exterior wall of a boarded-up laundromat. He's spit out his mouthpiece and unbuckled himself before his ears have stopped ringing, then he steps out of the car, pausing just long enough to grab a few essentials.
The squeal of the tires as the Europa is pushed toward the wall is deafening inside the vehicle. Yanking the steering wheel to the side, Vasha attempts to free herself from the car before…
The car hits the side of the building and the airbag deploys. Covering her face with her arms, Vasha's face is spared most of the burns of the hot air exploding at her. A quick as it exploded, it deflates, allowing her to move, to try to unfasten the belt locking her into place. It is when she turns her head to unfasten the belt is when she notices the figure outside her window.
Porter surveys his handiwork with a chuckle as he strides up to the front of the Lotus. "Hi!" he greets Vasha, waving cheerfully and showing her one of the presents he's brought. It's a coffee can full of thermite. Grinning, he sets it down on the vehicle's hood and lights the fuse. In seconds, the assembly flares up and starts to melt its way into the engine. "Man, this looks like an expensive car," he laments. "I'd feel bad if you weren't planning on killing me."
The woman's eyes narrow and her breathing quickens as she watches the can full of thermite make her car bought with blood unsalvagable. She screams with fury as she wrestles with the buckle at her side, trying in vain to free herself. Thus far, her meetings with him have been… pleasant… civilized. Now the tide has turned, not in her favor. She closes her eyes and throws her head back onto the rest, her nostrils flaring with every breath as she tries with all of her might to calm herself. Not too long, one thing about Kyle Porter is that he is quite unpredictable. Slowly, her eyes open and she levels her hazel eyes to meet his dark brown ones. "And so you will do this to ensure your survival?" Her voice is cool, distant, a reflection of her father's.
"I do this so you'll realize that the cost of killing me is unacceptably high," Porter replies, not unkindly. He crosses his arms over his chest and holds eye contact with Vasha. His gaze is measuring, gauging, weighing, like a horse trader trying to decide if he's picked up a nag or a thoroughbred. "And to let you know that I don't appreciate you gathering intel on me. Friends don't spy on friends, Vash."
"Friends do not destroy other friends automobiles," The brunette's South African voice is as smooth as silk, and with her calm comes the click of the belt. Unfortunately, there is still the matter of being pinned inside of a vehicle that is melting at the hood. Keeping eye contact with Porter, Vasha slowly reaches toward the glvoe compartment of her car. It has moved considerably closer since the accident so she barely has to lean to get to it. "My name is Vasha, Captain, not vash.."
Porter raises an eyebrow and purses his lips while he ponders. He nods reluctantly after a few seconds. One corner of his mouth curls up into a small smile as he nudges the battered Lotus with his foot, dislodging a bit of chrome. "Fair enough," he concedes, chuckling quietly and stepping closer to Vasha's window. "Stop dogging me and I'll stop coming up with creative ways to make you miserable. Deal?"
"What is this, America, you think I have been 'dogging' you?" There is an audible strain in Vasha's voice as she slowly brings her hand up, revealing a Jericho. Giving him a small smile, she straightens her arm and fires three shots into the windshield in different locations shattering the glass. Then, with a twist, the woman slides from her seat and plants her feet into the windshield to push it out. The windshield comes apart in pieces and in moments, the willowing woman is crawling out through the hole and winding her way onto the roof of her car.
"Hey! Not friendly!" Porter hits the deck as bullets and broken glass start flying. Grumbling a mishmash of curses under his breath, he skitters toward the rear of the vehicle and digs in his pockets. The folding knife he produces would be more than suitable for combat, but right now he has other ideas. He jams the tip of the blade in the seam where the car's trunk and bumper meet, wiggles around until he finds the latch, and pops the lid open to give himself some cover. "This is definitely going to complicate our relationship, Vash!"
Coming to a stand on the roof of the car, it begins to buckle under her weight and the trunk that has so recently been opened is slammed closed again when she jumps down on it. Using it as a springboard, she launches herself at Porter tackling him to the ground behind the car. "I already told you, Captain," her breath is heavy as her chest heaves with each intake. "My name is Vasha." She grips his shoulders tightly and squeezes as she holds him on the ground as she straddles his body at the waist. "I do not think you wish to begin our relationship on such a sour note, mm?"
Porter's eyes dart around in sharp, precise glances. Vasha's ears. Her elbows. The narrow space between their bodies. He smiles, relaxes, and settles with his back against the street. "Sure, sure," he agrees. "Because thermite and bullets got us off to such a fabulous start."
"So," he says, his smile growing wider. "What's your next move? Because I'm dying to find out."
"I believe that you began this, what you call 'dogging'," she says calmly, staring down at his face. His smile makes her insides boil with rage but she keeps her exterior quite calm. "What is it you wish from me, Captain? Do you wish for me to forgive every slight against me, against my father? His mistress?" She doesn't even give the woman the dignity of calling her mother. "That will not happen, not in this life." She tightens her hold on his body with her thighs, an embrace he might not welcome so soon after the first.
"As for my next move, Captain, perhaps I should end you now on the street but I will not." She squeezes just a little harder now, still allowing him just enough room to take a breath in. "I still owe you a life for saving mine, though you tried to take it just now… Ja?"
"Kill you?" Porter queries blandly. "You're the one who started shooting. Hey! I have organs in there!" Squirming, he gasps in a breath. Then he shakes his head and squeezes his eyes shut for a brief, exasperated moment. "Have it your way, kid. To the death. Just remember, I could've let you die more than once already. And this will be the second time you've let me go. Food for thought."
Narrowing her eyes, she stares down at the man. Her legs loosen their grip on his ribs and she sits up a little further on him. "What is it you wish from this, Captain?" Her South African accent making her tone a little more guttural than it should. She's lost the smooth as silk inflection as she attempts to get into the mind of the man who is by all counts a relative stranger. "You wish for peace between us? You know who I am, you know who my father is. The peace must be made with him, mmm?"
"Then make an offer on my behalf," Porter suggests. "Because I don't like the alternative. I don't want to kill you any more than I want to let you kill me. I can't emphasize either of those things enough. Especially the second one."
He seems sincere enough. He hasn't struggled since he hit the pavement. He's always responded defensively in their previous encounters. He arches an eyebrow and smiles.
"Make an offer on your behest," Vasha begins, her voice turning soft as she half lids her eyes and turns her head away to examine the wreckage that once was her beautiful car. "That would kill me, you know this." Looking down at him again, her face somewhat serene. She had him, he knew it, she'll let him go again, they both know it.
"What is it about you that made you worth dying for, Captain? Tell me this and I will consider your proposal."
Porter lets out a long, low sigh and closes his eyes again, this time in a pained expression. Recklessly, or perhaps distractedly, he leaves them shut for quite a while. "I really am sorry about what happened," he says quietly. "I take orders, same as you. I didn't ask for the job, and I certainly didn't ask for… the rest of what happened. And it's over now. I have no quarrel with you or your father."
Raising a hand, Vasha brings it down hard across Porter's face, slapping him hard across the cheek. "You did not ask for this? You created this!" In a swift motion, she rolls from her knees to her heels and then stands in a well practiced and fluid motion. She raises her foot behind her, preparing to deliver another blow while the prone man is down, instead, the gravel under her feet crunches as she turns and runs a few feet away from him. Well within speaking distance. "My father did not ask for his house to be destroyed."
Porter's body relaxes to absorb a blow that never falls. Slowly, he picks himself up off the grounds and brushes away dust from his shirt, all the while keeping his eyes on his volatile counterpart. Making no attempt to keep it hidden, he closes his folding knife and tucks it back into his pocket. "Man, I really screwed your life up, didn't I?" he asks rhetorically. "I'm not going to try and make it up to you. Just think about it. I make a better friend than an enemy."
Staring at him for a long while, Vasha's head tilts to the side as she examines him. "You did not make a very good friend to the woman who called herself my mother. She sacrificed her life." Her voice carries an odd warmth, perhaps a glint of raw humor evident by the twitch at one corner of her lips. "Would you betray me the same way? Leave me to the hands of my father should he find out? You are quite good at running, Captain, perhaps it comes with your job."
"Perhaps I make a better friend than your father does," Porter replies calmly. For a moment, he looks every bit his age and then some. Tired. Weary, even. A bit sad. He drops his hands to his sides and sags backward against the totaled Lotus. "That's a terrible thing to be able to say. You and I both know that time is the only way I'll convince you, and we'll only have time if you give up hunting me for a while."
"Perhaps you will purchase me a new auto for the one you destroyed, as a gesture of this new friendship." Whether he does or not is entirely irrelevant, the man before her is old and seemingly decrepit, nothing like the man Elsa threw at her father on the last day of her life. Still. There's a glint of curiosity, a twitch of an eyebrow that betrays a neutral poker face. He is beaten for now, beaten by the strength of a few words spit out in anger. "I did not begin hunting you in earnest, Captain, we met by sheer coincidence. Twice. Unless you were expecting me at that auction, Hmm?"
Porter tosses Vasha an unimpressed glance. "I find coincidences are rarely coincidental," he drones. "You might not have been after me directly, but you were there for the same reason that I was." His patience seems to have reached its limit. He furrows his brow, shakes his head, and turns his back to leave. "Stop trying to kill me," he calls out without turning back. "Things just get worse from here."