2008-03-19: Smash-Up


Cam_icon.gif Gene_icon.gif Mikhail_icon.gif Quinn_icon.gif

Summary: A couple people witness a car accident in Harlem. All is not what it appears.

Date It Happened: March 19, 2008



One of the preserved greenspaces in the Harlem region of New York is also the home to quite a bit of street art. Spraypainted murals decorate concrete in various locations, walls have more complex designs. Even the benches are colored and painted. A small community garden sits in one corner, with no major planting taking place at this point. A group of children, just around double digits in age, play various games on the concrete, chilled by the not-yet-Spring air. A few bikes lean against one of the walls, obviously belonging to the children, whose racial mix favors African American, though there are others as well. The children aren't completely alone as the sunlight starts to dim. There's a couple of older teens nearby, dark jackets and vests, sitting near an older car parked near the corner of the greenspace.

This…is almost like paradise to an art student. Well, 'paradise' may be pushing it, but it is a feast for Mikhail's eyes. He called this field trip to Harlem an art excursion of sorts - something to help him further his knowledge in what is known as 'urban art.' Apparently, his excuse to get out of class for another day was bought, and now he was perching on one of the benches sketching the scenery and the people inhabiting the space.

A spring day, no matter if chilly. Wonderful time to explore the city! Quinn takes time, and the bus, and ends up here. A wonderful discovery, really, for a creative type. Artist of another kind, perhaps, she can still appreciate what she sees.

Cam is starting to make friends at school, now that the whole drug gang situation isn't as high-tension. One of those friends is a boy living in Harlem, and Cam came to visit him tonight. Now on his way home, Cam makes his way across the park towards a subway station on the other side, though not in any rush. The boy glances up to the playing kids just slightly younger than him, but makes his way around the edges.

Harlem is frickin' scary. People die in Harlem. Gene doesn't want to die. That in mind, he makes sure to keep his windows rolled up as he finds himself down on a street that many used to consider dangerous. At least he is his totally sweet and safe ride… the old school Camaro called Bumblebee. R2-D2 may or maynot be in the trunk. That's it, I'm making my own GPS from now on," Gene states with with distain toward the flashing screen in his dashboard.

"Turn left in .3 miles. Welcome to New Orleans," the female voice in the GPS offers 'helpfully'.

Gene just STARES at the GPS.

Curse false GPS signatures. Who ever would've thought that a place like Harlem might be scary? Apparently Gene. And maybe he's not wrong. While his old school Camaro pulls up, another car starts to move in closer. It begins to move toward the edge of the street, with the small exception that… it isn't slowing down. The teenagers standing around the car don't notice at first, and neither do the children in the greenspace, but the car's moving right for them. The teenagers' car, specifically, not the children.

At first, he doesn't really notice either. Mikhail is just sketching. But when he does get to drawing a car or two, it takes a while for that warning to set in. He looks over the top of his sketchpad, the pen tilting in his grip once he readjusts himself to the reality of the place. And to see the car moving without slowing down…

His reactions are slow. Putting away the sketchpad is a pain in itself as he hops off of the bench to run toward the teens and kids. He can't yell. At least, he tries. "Hey. Hey!"

Quinn notices the car, of course. But she doesn't, right off, pay much attention to notice where it is going. Until it goes off the road, that is.

Cam is pretty clueless about the speeding car as well. His attention is on the other kids, though whether he's thinking about joining the play or just looking for any kids he might know isn't clear.

Looking out of his rear view mirror, Gene is a cautious driver. Of course, this caution might end up protecting more than just himself this night. As he sees the car going where it shouldn't be, he doesn't have it in him to pull evasive maneuvers. But he DOES at least force his hand on his horn as he puts on the breaks. It isn't a standard horn, but rather La Cucaracha. Don't ask him why he had installed that. At least it wasn't another Transformer reference or something.

The teenager's hear Mikhail's yells first. They look over and raise their eyebrows. The kids stop playing to look up. Of course that means they're looking at Mikhail when the car barrels closer and closer. It's the honking of the horn that makes them look the right direction. Mostly because it IS playing La Cucaracha as opposed to just beeping at them. It's a 'what the hell is— oh shit' look that comes over their faces almost as one. A few of them get the smart idea to move out of the way.

One, apparently, suffers from action movie syndrome. He's staring at the oncoming car as if he can't remember that he has feet. At least he's not screaming at the same time?

The nicer, newer car, rams into the tail of the older, bigger car, ripping up the metal, ruining paint jobs of both. The driver of the ramming car jerk forward. Airbags pop out to offer protection. The teenager that was tsuck staring is knocked back onto the pavement, thanks to the car he was standing against getting pushed a few feet.

As the dust starts to settle, the mirror ornament swings back and forth. A golden spade.

Oh, stupidstupidstupidWATCH OUT FOR THE CARS! That's what the artist meant to say, save for the 'stupid' part. But the horn. The horn. La Cuca-

That car is familiar. And as everything happens right then and there, Mikhail's alertness makes him stumble in step. Thankfully he is away from the sudden crash, but he gasps. Blue gray eyes widen as he starts heading over to the yellow Camero, rushing past those who ran away from the wreck.

Quinn frowns as she watches the crash. She runs toward the cars, not because she's that brave, but to see if anyone is hurt. She's pulling a cellphone from her pocket as she does.

Cam looks up at the horn as well, blinking as he sees the car. He seems to figure pretty quickly he isn't in the path of the car, only taking a few steps to the side. Once he does, he watches the crash and then goes running forward too. In his case, he's just far too curious to pass up the chance to see the results of a crash close up.
Unaware that Mikhail is in the area, Gene just watches the action from his side mirror, trying to figure out what just happened as he pulls off to the other side of the road. It looks like that car intentionally rammed into the other one. But why? Just some petty gang war or something, the young man figures. After all, what else could it be?

"What the fuck man," one of the recovering teens finally manages to say, picking himself off of the ground where he dove. The other teenagers are all getting to their feet as the kids get closer. Most are keeping a distance, but staring curiously. A few stranglers get closer and closer. The cars are no longer moving. There's mild creaking as someone's trying to get the door open around the airbags. The horn (a normal horn, not La Cucaracha) honks every so often.

"Dude… your dad's gonna kill you," one of the other teenagers speaks up, looking specifically at the one that was stuck staring when he saw the car set to ram… apparently his dad's car. They don't seem to be too overly concerned about running for it. Not at the moment.

The driver's side door opens just as the group gets close enough. A young man falls out, landing on his side on the pavement. Blood is visible on his jacket.

Quinn rushes over, calling the police from the way the conversation is going. She glances around, "Damnit, what street is this?" she is describing the scene, too.

Well, Mikhail is almost roadkill when Gene decides to move. He stops a little before everything else starts to settle, turning his head to look at the car that crashed.

The moment is surreal. It's not everyday you see someone come out of a car with blood on them. It's enough to shake the teen into moving forward again. A closer look at the injured (dead?) man, a chance to help him survive if he can take him farther from the car's side opening.

Cam pulls to a stop as he gets close to the car and the teens, eyes widening a little as he sees the injured driver get out of the car. He looks up and around and then back to the driver, stepping back to be out of the way of the others approaching.

Pausing as everyone seems to be checking out the accident, Gene continues to stay on the sidelines, parking his car at the first free spot he can find. He doesn't get involved yet. He doesn't even call the cops. Maybe he is waiting. Maybe he's scared. Being a spy and being face to face with violence are two different things after all. The mirrors are watched, waiting to see if these is anymore trouble or if this is it. A glance goes toward his glove box from time to time, but he decides to keep watching. Hopefully, Gene won't have to see how hard core he is tonight.

The police on the other end of Quinn's phonecall ask her to stay on the line, asking for as much information as possible. Was anyone injured? The level of emergency needs to be rated, after all. No sirens can be heard yet. No one's on their way. Not yet. The dispatcher insures someone will be sent as soon as possible. It needs the street address.

One of the teenagers hears her talking and moves away from the bleeding guy, and toward her, giving her the street name, and the block's address. They look shaken. The kids start to move as if they might decide to go home, while others linger. The teenagers aren't leaving yet. One of them looks at the car visibly distraught. The car that got rammed, not the one that did the ramming.

As Cam and Mikhail get closer to the injured man, he tries to move. There's blood on his back as well as his front. There's blood on the airbag, on the driver's seat…

He freezes. Blood. Blood everywhere. Mikhail almost stops breathing as he stares at the sight, his heart pounding against his chest. "Y…" How does a man get this injured when he's driving? He can't piece things together easily, and his mind is fluctuating between panic and calmness.

The artist glances over a shoulder as he forces himself to help the man out, his own breathing audible within the closed space. "St-stay still," he breathes, "help…help's on the way…" He looks at Cam again before eying the others nearby, his throat suddenly running dry. He needs to yell. Yell.

Mikhail's tone is rough, sharp. It should get people's attention. "Guys, give some room! Give…ROOM. Or help! NOW!"

Gene looks at the wreck, noticing details in the mirror. When it comes to finding things out, Gene is a professional. Something is wrong, he needs to check it out. A couple of moments later, Gene can be seen exiting out of his car and adjusting his peacoat, making sure the back is pull down entirely. Locking his doors, the Geek God moves toward the accident, sighing as he does. He shouldn't be worrying about this. He's got other things to attend to. But like Hiro and Peter, Gene figures that he needs to at least try.

Meanwhile in Gene's car, a glove box is left open… A single .22 round rolls out from the driver's manual to fall on to the car seat.

Cam blinks, looking into the car, "How'd he bleed on his back too?" But then Mikhail's ordering everybody back and he quickly scrambles back again, biting his lip.

Quinn kneels by the guy, gasping. She looks at the other guys. "Either of you know any first aid? I called for an ambulance."

There's other cars moving along, most going by really slow. The kind of slow drive-by that always happens when people see a car crash. They don't need to slow to get by it, but they slow because they have to look. One has it's windows rolled down, the people visibly looking out at it.

The young man doesn't look to be doing too great. There's blood still leaking out as he's moved. He's still actively bleeding. The ambulance would be very welcome soon.

Quinn manages to notice that this man laying on the pavement has been SHOT. Multiple times. And not only that, the cars that are slowing down to look at the scene… The one with the windows rolled down. There's a guy with a gun sitting in the back seat. And it looks very much like he's raising it.

Mikhail manages to notice that the car with the window rolled down looks very suspicious. It not only has the same mirror ornament hanging from it (a golden spade), but the young men inside are dressed similar to the men who were in the bicycle shop the other day. And the one in the back seat… you could swear he's holding something… gunlike.

Quinn has seen a lot of things. She comes from Vegas, after all. But this is not her usual thing. She kneels, putting the phone in her pocket when she frowns, saying, "What the.. that's.. bullet holes. Lots of.." she glances around, "How, or who.." she then is staring, hand raising to point toward one of the cars that is slowly driving by, 'G.. gun!' she says, as she tries to duck.

literally take on the color of the environment? Not successful, just weird."

"I…" Mikhail shakes his head, eyes flicking back over at Cam as the kid backs up. "…I don't know…" With Quinn now kneeling close, he swallows the lump of uneasiness down. Now isn't the time to freak out. It's blood. The man's blood. Not his. Not his.

"I…stop the bleeding," he says to the girl quietly, still recovering from the short yell. He pulls off his own jacket in an attempt to use it as some sort of tourniquet, but he pauses. Blue gray eyes catch a glimpse of a golden spade ornament. The men, the ones still present, the shape…


With Quinn's outburst, he also tries to get down.

Cam starts to say something to Mikhail, "Can you…" But then Quinn's yelling about a gun, and he blinks, eyes widening and looking to her and around quickly, starting to find cover himself but his reaction is slowed as he didn't see it himself, and he tries to figure out where the gun might be.

Quinn is pretty panicked. She tugs at Cam's leg as she says, "Get down!" in a stage whisper. She mutters, "Can't let them see you.." flattening on the sidewalk. Things get a little odd, there, as it seems.. it almost looks like the sidewalk melts and starts to slide up her clothes, covering Quinn, changing the color of both so that it is a little hard to tell where Quinn ends, and the sidewalk begins. Rather like.. a chameleon.

Unlike most people, Gene doesn't really have handy powers for a time like this. While he wanted to see what was going on and maybe help, it seems like he got himself into what he feared… A gang fight. He doesn't take cover in the way most do, walking with purpose to the car crashed, trying to stand behind Gene looks toward the other car. A hand calmly and slowly reaches to the back of his peacoat, the sicky pale young man now white as a sheet. After all, this is the last way he expected to spend his Thursday, that's for sure. Apparently seeing his friend, he has one simple order for him. "Keep low!"

Thursday nights are never supposed to be this interesting. It's not even Idol night! None of the really awesome shows are on! And certainly violence should wait til the weekend. Or one would think. There's a curse from the car as people start ducking for cover. They speed up, not noticing the camoflauge, or some other things. They weren't aiming for people, anyway. One shot. It goes through the glass window on the back passanger side, shattering it. A second shot through broken window hits the windshield. They speed up and drive away more quickly.

The sirens can be heard.

The spade hanging from the rear-view swings violently. When it comes to a stop, there's a hole in the middle of it.

The man laying on the ground, bleeding, lifts his hand up. It'd been under his coat the whole time, out of sight. On the back of his hand are visible cuts. A lot of the blood came from that. The back of his hand had been tattooed once, but it looks like someone took a knife to it, cutting chunks of it out.

Mikhail recognized Gene's voice, and with the extra advice, he did just that. However, he still has his eyes on the injured man as the shots went off. He flinches, crawling over to the man to see how he was faring. The mutilated tattooed hand is a sickening sight, causing Mikhail to go pale. "…Oh my go…"

Quinn's face is still.. well, cement colored as she raises up at that sound. She would pale, but, well.. she looks at the hand and she says, frowning, "Removing a mark or something? Maybe he was trying to quit a gang?" then she catches sight of her own hand, staring and she mutters, 'Oh crap..'

Cam gives a yelp when his foot's grabbed, falling to the ground. He stays down during the shooting, the ground around his hands starting to get covered in ice. He blinks as he looks over to the chameleon girl, though. Once the shooting stops, he stands back up. Looking a little spooked, but not too bad once he sees none of the bullets came anywhere near him. He seems more bothered looking at the wounded man.

"It's the Popo." Yes, Gene said 'popo' in reference to the police. Being in Harlem apparently makes him feel gangsta by proxy. Glancing toward Mikhail, Gene gives a nervous smile. "Mikhail, get what you can from the site, let me know what you find." Maybe he doesn't notice the messed up hand of the wounded man, the young Geek God too concerned about when and where the police are coming from. "I can't be talking to the police right now. I'll see you later." He can't be questioned by the Police right now. Not when he's packing and is pretty sure that police don't take kindly to concealed weapons without permits. He used to be such a good boy.

Police! Ambulance! All that and more~ But for the moment, they just get to deal with a bleeding man while Gene makes his get-away. R2 is probably grateful too. He's an illegal droid.

Quinn closes her eyes, squinting as she tries to concentrate. She is repeating, "Go back, go back, go ba.." she squints open one eye, at her hand. No change. She mutters, "Holy.. I'm STUCK." she starts looking around panicked. "I got to hide.."

He says nothing in response to Quinn's speculation, but he does break away from staring at the messed-up hand. The artist looks back at his friend, mouth moving as Gene gave more direction and leaves. "G-Genie…"

He was given a job. He can't just sit there. Mikhail gets onto his knees, finally noticing that Quinn…is…where? "…How…what?"

Quinn isn't really that invisible. Indeed, she probably looks pretty freaky, like a walking concrete statue of herself. She tries to find somewhere to hide herself, very unhappily. 'How the hell am I going to get home like this?'

Still staring down at Quinn, Mikhail tilts his head in slight confusion. "…You can't just…let go?"

The kids are pointing at her as she's walking around. Kids see that sort of thing! The teenagers are more interested in bullet holes and broken cars, but some of the kids really are pointing. There's a nearby alley she can slip down, though. The sirens get closer…

Quinn shakes her head, "Can't do it, I think I'm too tense." she hears the yells and turns, seeing the pointing. "I.." she makes for the alley at a dead run. Like they can't follow..

Again, Mikhail can't say anything to make the girl stop. But with the police and ambulances on scene, things are put back in order.

At least, this is as positive as he can think the situation can turn out.

Eyes fall back onto the bloodied man as everyone else keeps moving, the pulse of the lights falling over the artist's lanky frame…

Cam isn't sticking around either anymore, at least once the sight that is Quinn is gone. He turns and runs on towards the subway station again.

Quinn is hiding, behind a dumpster, trying to calm down. She closes her eyes, trying to concentrate.

A few children persue Quinn as she runs down the alley. Not all of them, just the really curious ones. After a moment, though, they come out of the alley looking bewildered, whispering to each other that statue-lady just vanished. Maybe they were seeing something. There were gun shots! Maybe they should go home. What if there's more gunshots. Oh hey, flashing lights! Kids are easily distracted, even in these horrific gang filled regions. They didn't get close enough to see how bad the man was hurt, so they didn't react as badly as the older people.

The police take over everything, taking statements from the teenagers, getting the injured man into an ambulance and off to medical attention.

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