2007-11-19: Desperately Seeking Revenge



Guest Starring:

Jack's ever so polite friends: Man with Chain, Metal Face Man, and Man in Chair.

Summary: When certain men can't get their hands on Jack, they start tracking down someone who's much easier to find.

Date It Happened: November 19, 2007

Desperately Seeking Revenge

Happy-Lucky Liquor Drinks

The prices at Happy-Lucky Liquor Drinks are pretty steep, but with a location right off of Madison Avenue, the owner and operator can afford to leave them that way. True to it's name, the store is cheerfully lit and decorated, primarily with a mishmash of Korean art and antiquities.

Behind the counter, Hye Me is perched on a stool and watching Korean soap operas on a tiny TV set with the volume turned up far, far too loud. As the owner, she always seems to be here no matter what time a customer comes by. More than that, she's always elegantly dressed and coiffed, easily maintaining an attractive face and figure at the brink of middle age. Her English needs a bit of spit and polish, but that never seems to slow her down when her favorite patrons come by.

Trina really probably isn't what anyone would call a favorite patron. With her pale features and the deep circles under her blue eyes, she certainly doesn't look like she should be anyone's favorite patron. She has, however, in recent weeks become a regular. Having taken another couple of bills off of the roll that Jack keeps in the drawer, the dark haired woman makes her way into the store with her slow, deliberate stride.

Once she's there, the young woman in her beat-up black leather coat and worn denim jeans and boots offers a fleeting but friendly smile to the proprietor before making her way directly towards her favored section of the store: the shelves of scotch.

"Hello!" Hye Me chirps. "How you doing today? Oh, crazy white lady! So happy see you!" Smiling widely, she waves and goes back to her soap operas.

Outside, A boy in his late teens pushes a secondhand wheelchair up to the door of Happy-Lucky. His passenger is a wickedly thin and cruel-faced man who looks somewhere in his thirties. The thin man is weak; one of his eyes spasms and rolls back in his head frequently and a tic distorts his mouth into a constant grimace. Though his condition is poor, the thin man's droogs are in fine form. Each is an able-bodied punk or bruiser of the highest order. Even the teen pushing his chair. They have no care for the needs and wants of the people around them. They don't care about petty things like rules and laws. All they care about is their own pleasure.

That's what made it so easy for the thin man to gather them together.

One of them holds the door open so that the other can file in, followed by the thin man in his chair. The first one through the door appears to be the spokesman. He has piercings through his lips, nose, and eyebrows and his scraggly hair is faded and unwashed. "Hello there, pretties. How are we tonight? Well, I hope." Despite the cordial nature of his questioning, there's a sinister edge to his smile and his tone.

Crazy white lady. Trina twists her dark head to look towards Hye Me at the seeming name of recognition, the eyebrow over her left eye peaking. Then she just sighs, offers a tiny smile and wave in return, and turns back to pick out her bottle of Ballantine's. Once she's got the rectangular bottle in hand, the young woman starts making her way up to the register.

And of course, nothing seems allowed to go smoothly.

With the approach of the new arrivals, Mah's expression darkens, and there's only the spark of a hollow smile before she decides that it's ultimately and entirely not worth the effort. "We're just fine," she offers with a fairly neutral tone and accent before beginning her march to the register anew.

"I'd say you's better'n fine, missy. I'd say you's a peach." The pierced man grins widely, showing off crooked, stained teeth. "I love to eat peaches."

The thin man silences the outburst with a subtle wave. "Derex," he slurs, as if the words are difficult for his lips and tongue to form. "Jack Derex. Where?"

Hye Me has chosen the sensible route. As a seasoned liquor store owner, she's opted to duck down behind the counter. The eerie, incongruous sound of chatty Koreans on the television loudly fills the air.

As the man with the metal face appears to start chatting her up, Trina visibly tenses. She is not in a mood to be dealing with this. In fact, she's ready to start spitting venom when the other man starts talking. The brunette's blue eyes shoot downward to the thinner of the pair, widened in surprise, and whatever quip was on her lips seems to dissolve. She blinks, once, and then her head shakes as if she were physically clearing away a cloud of confusion. Her brow furrows, and then she speaks at last. "I'm sorry. What did you just say?"

The thin man's face goes purple with rage. "WHERE'S JACK?" he screams, bulging his eyes and spraying flecks of spittle. Once a proud, powerful man, now all he can do is grip the arms of his wheelchair and thrash. Thanks to what Jack did to him. Thanks to the huge hypo of morphine that Jack injected directly into the thin man's jugular, badly damaging his brain.

"Oi! He's playin' our song, mates." The man with the piercings waves to the the teen and the other droog. The three of them slowly converge into a threatening knot and begin to advance on Trina. "No use tryin' to hide him," metal face taunts. "We know you's his girl. So you tell us the easy way, or we hurts you. Lots. I'm good with either-or, y'know?"

To emphasize the threat, the third droog draws a length of rusty bicycle chain from inside his shabby sport coat and the teen produces an old fashioned Italian switchblade.

As the man starts screaming, the thin woman's body twitches in surprise. Trina, however, really, really, really does not take well to being threatened by strangers. There's an angry sneer that curls her lips, even as the men start to advance. "Go to Hell."

It's only after the words are out of her mouth that the panic starts to settle into her gut like a lead weight. She takes a step back, and then — with scotch still in hand — starts trying to run down another aisle with much the same look of terror as a scared hare. Her arms pump at her sides and her hair beats against her back as she runs, but her legs still haven't refound the grace they once possessed. Instead, most of Trina's attention is focused on keeping upright instead of building up any sort of real speed.

The most important thing, in her mind, is trying to get something between herself and the people who seem to be more well acquainted with her boyfriend than would be preferable. Get something between them, get some room, get out the door before anyone gets hurt or things get broken. That's the plan. To her, it's a damn good plan.

"Corner 'er," the man with the piercings sneers. "She's mine. She don't wanna give us wot we want, I'll be 'appy to take it." He tugs his sap gloves on a little more snugly and mentally praises whoever thought to add powdered lead as knuckle padding. In response to his orders, the teen moves to block off the door and the chain-swinger circles around to approach from behind Trina, catching her in a pincer between he and the ringleader. Meanwhile, the thin man remains in his chair, gripping the wheels and slavering with anticipation.

Unnoticed, Hye Me has begun to move. She's barely picked herself up off the floor and is slithering along behind the counter.

Trina's partway down the aisle of choice, filled with beautiful gins and vermouths and vodkas, when the man with his chain cuts her off. She skids to a halt, using her free hand to grab the shelf in order to assist in the endeavor. With a grunt, she also uses that shelf to wheel back around and starts to run again, sending a couple bottles crashing down upon themselves on the ground, only to find Mr. Piercings at the other end of the corridor. She stumbles over herself as she skids to a halt again. If not for catching herself on a lower shelf, she'd bowl over completely. Her black boots pace a couple of steps one way, a couple of steps another, treading the same four square feet over and over again as she tries to come up with a new plan.

"C'mon," she tries next, her voice falling back onto the Georgian cadence it knows best. "There ain't no sense to this. I don't know where he is. And you really don't know what you're doing." All she knows is that she's damn well terrified. For herself, sure. But moreso for Jack, wherever the hell he is. And part of her is not entirely certain how well this could turn out for the men present, considering …past things. That tiny part of her, however, cannot afford to find a place in her reasoning just now. "Just walk away, and I won't tell nobody about this, I swear. We can pretend this never happened."

The pierced man flexes his gloved hands, creaking the leather ominously. "Baby, when I'm done with you, you'll never be able to forget it." He trails the tip of his tongue along his teeth slowly, tracing them one at a time in a grossly exaggerated come-hither fashion.


BOOM! Hye Me fires the double-barreled shotgun she's retrieved from under the counter. At this range it's hard to miss. In her panic, she aims not at the gloved and pierced man, but at his chain-wielding comrade. The shot is devastating, and sends the man down in a spray of blood.

Trina's attention is, for a brief moment, locked on the man and his gloves with the same devotion that one might give a cobra. She's waiting for the strike, and she can't seem to move or look away, hypnotized. Now, this should provide an opening for the man with his chain to make his move from behind. Should.

But God is infinitely merciful, and He sent her an overprotective liquor store clerk tonight. She may never buy her alcohol anywhere else ever again.

The shotgun blast sends Trina crouching for a moment, her arms lifted to clap their upper spans protectively down over her ears. And then it passes. Then — instead of doing what instinct warns, instead of running — Trina's taking her opportunity to run towards the man with his many piercings, wielding her bottle of scotch.

Several things happen almost simultaneously.

The pierced man turns to stare in horror at the gaping hole that's sprouted up in his friend's torso. He freezes. Unwise. The teenager reacts in much the same fashion. As vicious as these boys are, none of them expected anyone to die tonight.

Except for the thin man. He's not even picky about who at this point. The coolest and most collected move he's made thus far is to draw a pistol from beneath his shirt.

Time skips back into motion. Trina's bottle strikes dead center, thunking mightily against the thug's head and driving piercings deep into his skin. He crumpled to the floor in a boneless heap. The thin man fires his pistol, drilling Hye Me just under the right eye. She collapses with blood fountaining from the wound. Overwhelmed, the teenager pisses himself and turns his head to vomit at the same time.

Or… or maybe she won't be buying alcohol here again. Ever. At the sound of a different firearm, Trina drops down in place in the aisle with eyes squeezed tight… Hopefully out of sight of the man in the chair. Oh, please let this be a nightmare. A horrible, horrible nightmare. A missed treatment of her pills or too much scotch.

Oh, please, let her count to three and have this all go away when she opens her eyes. She'll be at the apartment in bed. Jack will be beside her. She'll roll over and kiss him on the cheek. He'll wrap an arm around her and lull her back to sleep, away from the clutches of nightmares. All she has to do is count to three and open her eyes. 1… 2…

Awkwardly, the thin man wheels himself toward Trina and fires blindly at her through shelf upon shelf of liquor. It's impossible for him to aim, though. The only casualties are bottles of fine liquor, which is a tragedy in itself. He keeps squeezing the trigger long after the clip is empty and the slide locks back. "AHHHHHHRRRR!" he roars. "BOBBY! TIME TO GO!"

The shout drags the terrified teenager from his cowering and pissing. He slinks forward, grabs the wheelchair by the handles, and turns them toward the door.

Shattering bottles. The decisive sounds of bullets. When both of those sounds stop ringing through the shop, Trina pries open her eyes just in time to see the two men racing off. Well, one racing, and one riding in a chair like the King of the Psychopaths on his wheeled throne.

She can't pry herself away, however, until she's sure that she hears them turning. And then the rail-thin woman is making her way with shaking hands to where she thinks Hye Me fell over. Before she can get to the counter, however, Trina's voice is trembling and calling out into the air. "Lady? Lady, are you okay?"

And just like that, the demented thin man and his final lackey are gone.

As for the lady, she's definitely seen better days. Her cheekbone has been shattered and one side of her face has been partially caved in. Unfortunately, the poor thing is still conscious and aware. She groans and coughs wetly when Trina approaches, but doesn't otherwise respond.

"Oh, God. Oh, God." As much a prayer as Trina ever offers, the younger woman is now officially Freaking Out, too afraid to touch the Hye Me even as she kneels beside her. This is her fault. Somehow, this is her fault. "It— It's going to be okay. Just… Just hang in there," she lies, even as she's reaching into her pocket and pulling out a phone. By the time she's got her cheap cell phone out of her pocket, the motor head is fighting to keep her voice free of the thickness that will betray the horrified tears that are freely falling down her cheeks. She should never have left the apartment. She should never have come here. 9-1-1, the numbers are dialed and then she waits to beg them to come. To make this better. To fix this.

But then who to call? At last tally, neither Jack or Elena were in any shape to help anyone. But Jack could be in trouble. It isn't as if—

Thoughts are cut short by the sound of a dispatcher on the other line. It is then that she manages to get out the name of the store, the location, and 'she's shot' before entirely desolving into hysterical sobbing.

It's another lovely, freezing cold night in New York.

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