2010-06-28: Botched Robbery



Date: June 28, 2010


A robbery goes bad when two thieves are rendered powerless.

"Botched Robbery"

A Warehouse Belonging To The Japanese Mob

The guards outside the Japanese mob warehouse have one fatal flaw—

They're smokers.

Two men stand around the corner, away from the front door, smoking and chatting between their shifts. It's early evening, still, and the late group has yet to arrive— an assualt that would have been best under the cover of night suddenly got moved up. The smell of cigarettes mask the smoke form that slips up under the door frame and looks at the inside, checking for the presence of others, before slipping back outside to form a smoke cloud that gives the go-ahead— specifically a hand waving her toward the door. Coast is clear. The cloud of smoke remains outside, creeping toward the men around the corner.

Devon's going to watch her back, while she gets the door open. Or that's the plan.

They don't yet notice that the sky's growing slightly darker as something comes between the earth and the sun.

From her hiding place, Tori sees Devon wave her on. She has many doubts about whether or not they should be doing this — it's been a long time since she's done anything other than stealing from a locker room — the last time wasn't even for money, but for a pen because she needed one to jot down an idea for a paper before she forgot it! And she'd taken a Papermate pen that one could buy for fifty cents, along with a stick of gum. She'd left serious burglary behind her in Ireland, until Aidan and Braydan came to her apartment and asked for her help.

But Devon's behind her — or rather in front of her waving her on — and she can't back out now. She moves swiftly to the door, the keypad there the only obstacle between her and the inside of the warehouse. She glances up at the dark sky, a little confused as the sun gets covered by shadow. Well, the early darkness can only help cover their getaway, right?

Bringing her hand to the keypad, a split second before the sun is totally blotted out. 1-7… And then the information is gone. Nothing to be gleaned from her hands lightly touching the keys, as if the fingerprints that had left their story there on the keypad had suddenly been wiped clean.


The curse is followed by a second sound, a loud thud against the concrete where a smokey form had once been. It's a very good thing he hadn't decided to stay inside, but Devon's suddenly laying flat on the dirty concrete in his leather coat and balaclava, pushing himself up in confusion. There's a twist to his expression, as if he's trying to concentrate, but that doesn't last long, because they hear a sound of men speaking in Japanese—

They heard something.

"Son of a…" he scrambles to his feet, ignoring bruised knees and sore body. "I can't turn back. I didn't see any negation gas, but they must have some." It's the only explaination he can think of, because he's encoutered it before— that and the darts his brother made. The footsteps approach from around the corner, guns can be heard being drawn…

Tori turns to peer at him, her dark eyes worried. "I can't get the code, either. I got two digits and then it cut out —" she stops, about to tell him about the fact the keypad combinations are usually a minimum of four digits, and the chance of her alighting on the right permutation before alarms go off is rather unlikely, and that they need to find a way in with a traditional padlock.

But the sound of men coming around the corner stops her. Her own gun is drawn, but she's moving away, clearly afraid. Tori is not a fighter, and relied on the Irish boys to keep her safe more often than not.

"Run?" she asks, glancing over her shoulder for a way out.

"Yes, run," Devon says, pulling something out from under his jacket. He'd intended to use it to manipulate the smoke and help buy them some extra time to get the weapons loaded into the van, but now it may be their best way to escape. A gas grenade. The wind's headed in the right direction for him to pull the pen and toss it towards the corner of the alley, before he spins and runs behind her. "To the van. Get in and drive. If they keep coming, I'll hold them off." He'd promised to keep her safe, and he intends to—

Her job now is to drive, while he pulls out his firearm and listens to them cough and try to wave the gas away.

Luckily, Tori was a soccer player in school and a good runner. She makes for the van, reaching into her pockets for the keys so that she can hop in and start the engine as soon as possible. She glances back, to make sure he's behind her, then turns forward again. If something happens to him, when she is the only reason he's doing this, she'll never forgive herself. What sort of person asks their boyfriend to join them in a life of crime? "Shit," she says again, as she makes it to the van, fumbling with the door to pull it open.

While she fumbles with the door, there's the sound of a shot fired. It goes past them, slamming into the large cargo door of the van and ripping through the metal. Devon stops and fires back a couple times, not intending to hit them, but to force them to seek cover so they have to stop firing. The men do, firing a few times before ducking around the corner. The van gets hit on the side again, a shot breaking through one of the windows and fracturing it. Pausing, he pulls out the second grenade and tosses it, also smoke-filled, and throwing it along the concrete to give more cover, before he fires off into it.

Not intending to get shot, himself, he doesn't even pay attention to where he fires, because he's trying to get the cargo side door open. A foot brings him up, and he leaves it wide open so he can fire out of it.

The gun shots ringing in her ears, she keeps glancing back to make sure Devon hasn't been shot, even as she manages to find the right key and slide it into the ignition, the van revving to life. It takes what feels like long, tense, slow-motion moments, but really it's a matter of seconds. Finally she throws the car into gear, peeling away with a squeal of tires.

"Are you okay?" Tori gasps, glancing back again, before her eyes dart to the windshield again to keep an eye on the road. "God, I'm so sorry…" She realizes she can't feel the fingerprints who have driven this van in the past, Aidan's or Brayden's or the other guys she doesn't know who have touched this steering wheel before. "How long does negation gas take to wear off?" she asks, hand moving to the radio to touch its dials, frowning at the lack of information. It's an odd silence in her head — it almost makes her feel lonely.

The side doors stay open as Devon falls back into the floor of the van, dropping his weapon and looking up. It takes a moment or two before he sits up and pushes the side door closed, the little bullet holes letting in extra light, as the sky brightens again. "I'm fine— but I'm glad I brought the gas grenades. It threw off their aim…" It's easy to fire in a direction, but it's hard to aim when gas stings in the eyes—

"The one time I got exposed to it it lasted a couple hours, but I don't know how it worked on me in smoke form— maybe they found a kind that can affect an whole area and doesn't need to be breathed in." It doesn't make sense, but it makes more sense than… both of them panicking and losing control at the same time.

Trying to keep her eyes on the road, she still glances up to look at him through the rearview mirror for a moment, the hand that was trailing along the radio controls reaching back for his to squeeze. Her eyes tear up and she drops her gaze from the mirror to look at the road — tearing eyes make for blurry vision, but it's safer than looking back at him at any rate.

"I'm so sorry," she says quietly, staring forward now. She's so not cut out to be a criminal, that much is clear. "Where do you get those things, anyway? I mean, they don't just sell them at the grocery store, do they," she says lightly, to lighten the mood a little after her apology.

"Same place I got the gun, I borrowed them," Devon says, looking over the firearm for a few moments on the floor of the van, before he gets up and moves to the passanger seat, so she doesn't have to twist around too much if she wants to look at him. The facemask gets pulled off finally, so that he can stretch his jaw and look over at her without feeling all kinds of strange.

"I wasn't planning to give them back, though. You'd be surprised the kinds of weapons you can find floating around in smoke form— Stealing isn't too far from what I've been doing for the last couple of years since I got my ability." Whether it's stealing a place to sleep, or a bite to eat, it's still stealing. "You don't have anything to apologize for— not like they recognized us." Stealing from the mob wasn't on his original resume.

She reaches up to pull her own mask off, her hair tumbling out in choppy strands about her face before she runs a hand through the dark hair. "Just curious. you know it's not borrowing if you don't give it back, of course," Tori says playfully, tossing her mask down on the floor of the van behind her.

Her hand comes back to rest on his arm, feeling the need to feel him solid beside her, to ensure he wasn't shot and is still real and beside her. "I guess we bring the van back to the guys and plan for another day — though they'll probably increase security around now they know we're looking." She wrinkles her nose at that.

Real and solid, and, as his bare hand reaches up to touch hers in return, it's recognized that he's oddly cool. Normal feeling, in fact, rather than the usual few degrees hotter than normal that would often accompany touching him. The smell of cigarette smoke still hangs off his jacket, but there's no additional information that she's grown so used to— like where he got the jacket. Devon squeezes her hand. "They may also move the stash, if the cops show up to investigate the shootings. Someone had to have heard the gunfire."

They may have lost their window… "We may have to just apologize to them… If we can go back and get them, we will. I'll just try to find some knock out gas this time, and drop that first." Rather than the tear gas that he'd "borrowed" from the police station.

"Where the hell did they get that negation gas? That's pretty limited and specialized stuff. Think they got old Alpha people working for them?" Tori asks, fingers curling around his as she drives with just the one hand. "We'll have to talk to the others, warn them for anything they're working on. Or I guess I can do that." Since he doesn't really know the others yet.

At a red light, she pulls to a stop, then leans to kiss his cheek, worry still creasing her brow. "Thanks for being there," she says softly.

"Could be. We know that they were selling people like us to terrorists, wouldn't surprise me if they'd sold stuff to the mob, too," Devon says with a grumbly sound to his voice, as he looks back behind them to make sure no cars are following. Black Sedans are usually what would be there, in the stories, but the further they go, he doesn't see anything.

The kiss on the cheek makes his mouth thin into a half grin, before he turns to look at her again, "I'm glad I was. Though I didn't like hitting the concrete— I'm going to have bruises."

"Poor baby." She flashes him a grin and squeezes his hand before putting both hands on the wheel to flip on the turn signal and make a left. She's a careful driver, since she's not used to doing it — London and New York aren't places one needs to drive a lot, thanks to public trains and buses. "Well. Since we can't be all special super-powered villains-slash-super-heroes for a few hours, let's get rid of this van and go to a movie or something, and I promise to coddle you later. Deal?"

"Super villian slash heroes, huh?" Devon says with a hint of a chuckle on his breath, as he sits up and winces. Yeah, bruises in more than a few places. He'll be grateful he put the facemask on now, because it means he didn't scrape up his face when he fell. Just the impact has left a mark.

"You can coddle me and I'll coddle you at the same time." Cause their arrangment had it's mutual side.

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