The Mob goes Wild 8

Pain wracked the form. The lack of adrenaline no longer no numbed the nerves. You curled and writhed in Karen’s arms. Bleeding out over the Corinthian leather. The pain was sharp, unyielding, like someone was constantly stabbing your stomach over and over. She cradled your head against her chest. Stroking your hair in some vain attempt to soothe any pain. The excruciating pain echoing within her. She had no wounds but felt everything you suffered.

“It’s ok baby. It’s ok. We’re going to a doctor right now.” She alerted the driver to hurry the fuck up wherever the hell you were going.

“Karen… please… just shoot me.”

Resettling herself in the seat she pulled you in tighter, struggling to keep it together. “Nope, you have to suffer. So you can live… and one day you can walk Hildegarde down the aisle. I’m getting real tired of your shit and getting shot.” Karen’s tears were never sweet. The kisses on your forehead were though.

“I fucking hate you.”

The car abruptly halted in some part of the city. That sudden jarring added a whole new layer of pain. Katie pulled you into her big, matted arms. She was a big girl with large arms that easily held you in a princess-carry.

“Don’t worry Anon. I got you~” She had a slight sweetness to her voice. Happy to provide help to anyway. She was a sweet girl. “One of these day you’re gonna be out of lives Tiger.”

Karen brought you to some back alley bullshit in some part of New York you never had seen before. Must’ve been well within Jawfnovese territory as the wounded husband of a Mob-Queen was hoisted around without a bullet shield, granted the surrounding of fifteen or twenty made-women, in public. The relaxed nature of the women around you wasn’t able to rub off.

Your eyes wandered from woman to woman. Searching for any sign of your silver haired guardian. Wolf, Harpy, Cat, Chameleon, Ram, but no Sheep. One of the Hummers had taken off with a screech. Liz… no.

Katie brought you into a black-faced building, which strangely, was rather clean. You were brought to an open room with a single table with a single light hovering over it. Promptly dropped on your ass. The table was largely unused. No streaks, no dents, only shines. That cold of the table was relief. Recounting history was turning to be a muddling feat. The pain keepign you firmly planted in the present. Dredging the short-term memory for any figment of having been shot. When the fucking mouse turned the corner that first time. Blind firing two shots into your stomach.

“Ka… Kaba… Karen…?” You reached out to the darkness that surrounded you. Reaching out for these silhouettes that could only have been allies. One scaley hand reached out to yours. Rolling your fingers in between those. The bond was broken forcefully. Something, someone, had broken the clasp with the beloved. Bodies blocked the bright lights above. Unable to make out any features until their sharp hard hands and suspicious german accents betrayed suspicion. Fucking Spiders.

“Ahhh~ Herr Jawfnovese~! I did nat expek you tu return zo zoon~. Your zuch a lille’ raskal non~?”

Always a game with you. Just fix me up you arachnid-bitch.

That would say to yourself. No need to upset your caregiver. The Spider took a sadist’s delight in your pain. How stereotypical. Drawing every last inch of pain out before placing a transparent mask over your nose and mouth. It smelled, sweet.

 

 

 

 

One of these days you’ll have to kill those damn birds.

You awoke again in your own bed. A numbed pain residing in the body. No doubt a fuzziness from Feline designed painkiller. Cold little needles pricking every inch of the body. Karen laid beside you in pajamas. Your shirt and sweatpants. Laying her head on your arm. Still no Elizabeth. In your other arm, Hildegarde. One cute little family all bundled up on daddy.

You lifted your hand to Hildegarde’s cheek. Teasing the scales around her jaw to stir the child awake. Turning over and performing the same on the older Dragon. The little wiggler rubbed the sleep from her eyes, big ol’ yawn following. Kicking your side in reflex. Pain was a muffled sensation. Karen shuddered in stretch. Wiping her face across your bicep. Lifting the arm to place herself under it and closer to your heart. Your fingers rubbed that connecting area between back and wing. Just the right spot.

“How ya’ feeling Tiger?” She kissed once. One little slight kiss on the chest.

“Tingly. What happened?” Her kisses continued up your shoulder, neck, cheek, lips.

“Looooooooooots of Painkillers. They said the gas wasn’t enough to put you under. Meli and Kate had to hold you down until you were asleep. Pulled out four bullets after that. Three tummy,” Her fingers traced lines over the abdomen. Alerting you to each individual stitch she passed over. “Two calf.” And that alerted the stitches in the leg. There was something else nagging the mind.

“Janet.” Trying your best to yell out across the house without taring eardrums.

“Yes, Master Anon?” Janet’s appearance was as instantaneous as it was unsettling. It had been in a time before having a child when you first moved in with Karen but that time had long since passed.

“Janet, would you-.” Reaching over, lifting your child into the air, single armed. “-mind taking Hilde to the kitchen and make her something to eat pleeeeeeese?” Janet slid through the room with unearthly grace. Swooping up the child in feathery arms to hoist around like an airplane.

“Ohhh~ I have just the treat for you little one~” She swept your child out of the room leaving you alone with the wife.

“Wheres Erika?” Short and straight to the point.

“Downstairs… Shooting range.” Good. First place to start. “Woah woah Anon. Don’t get up. You’re staying in bed until you heal.” The eyes you gave her never made her feel so small. Some experts say you fall in love with someone because of their flaws. Karen had always a weakness for that fire in your eyes when there was something you wanted. “Ok, look…” This wasn’t going to be an intervention was it? “Please meet me in my office first. I want to talk to you about something.”

“Erika first.”

“Anon please…” Not once were you ever able to say no to Karen’s tears. How it stayed your words and calmed your heart. This woman was truly your rock in a sea of storms. Ok, except maybe in the span of the past two months.

“Alright.”

She stopped restraining you. If by restraining you qualify a weakly placed hand to the chest. You rose from the bed as best your wearily legs would manage. Without Karen’s help, you would’ve become a Monster amongst the house. Knocking over any object in your path from the effects of an inebriated mind. Yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay Percocet.

Karen lead you as best she could. Struggling to keep you stable with the dexterity of a drunkard. Luckily you were able to make it to the stairs having knocked only one picture stand and only one painting. You made it into her office where she set you down in a chair that faced the desk. The jumbling of your organs was a pain that overcame the painkillers. That was something you wouldn’t want to imagine without the opiates. Karen circled the desk, to a painting, to a vault, to a small little black box contained within. She hesitated, for her, she knew the box contained a fear she hoped to never open or find purpose to open. The box was one you had never seen. Raising your curious nature to know what else was hidden within the house, purposely withheld from your knowledge. Karen returned before you, sitting upon her desk with the box clenched to her chest. She stayed silent, eyeing you over, mentally contemplating the consequences of what would be the action.

“Anon.”

“Leblanc.”

“I’m about to do something I’m probably going to regret.”

“Oh god, did you cheat on me again?”

“No no, Oh god no. Anon, fuck. I’m sorry.” If she could, she’d shrink down to the size of a pencil to put anything between the both of you to hide behind.

“YOU DID?!”

“Nono, I mean I’m sorry for all that I did. I’m so fucking sorry.” You rose to take the woman into the strongest hug you could muster. At least you would’ve had the pain of missing some centimeters of intestine not held you back. You had to merely settle for reaching out to exposed thigh. “I love you.”

“Leblanc. I love you. I mean… I can’t forgive you for what you’ve done, but we can move on. We can move past that. You love me don’t you?”

“Of course I love you. I love you with all my heart. You are my treasure, you were the first man to truly tie me down, the first man I truly loved. I did something terrible to you and I deserve hell for it. I’m surprised you didn’t try to kill me when you found out.”

“I thought about it.”

“I’m glad you didn’t.” She chuckled. Perhaps her own way of expression emotion where she didn’t know which emotion was correct. “I’m sorry Anon. I’m so sorry.”

“You destroyed yourself more than I ever could have. I’ll take that as an apology, ya alcoholic.”

That brought a smile and laugh to both of you, if only out of awkwardness and then to break that awkwardness. The only weapon you had against her would’ve been to leave. That would be a suicidal action against a drunk Mafia Queen.

“I promise to you. I’ll be a much better Wife.”

“Don’t promise me. Show me. Over the rest of your life.” How coy.

She smirked. “That…” Nails rolling over the black wooden box. “…is why I have this.”

“And what is… this?”

“This…” She laid it out on its wider side. “Is a gift as much as a curse.”  OoOoOoOoOoOoOhhhhhhh how intriguing. “This is a sign. This is a tradition, given to the husband of every Mafia crime boss of the Jawfnovese family. My mother’s husband and my grandmother’s husband before her. So… I guess it’s not that much of a tradition. But! It is a tradition that I extend… to you.”

“And what could that be?”

Her demeanor changed to that of a more serious tone. She opened the box eveeeeeeeeeeeeeer sooooooooooooooooooooooo sloooooooooooooooooooowly.

A gun.

“A gun? Leblanc, we already have lots of those, why does this one make any difference.” You reach for the gun. Quickly the box was snapped before fingers could touch the metal.

“This isn’t just any gun Anon. This is MY gun… to you.”

“Ok ya’ lost me.”

“I understand that I cannot stop you from doing what you’re trying to do. And I’m not going to. So I’m going to help you.” Like how you tried to ask for your help before?

“Like how I tried to ask for your help before?”

“Anon, this gun is MY gun. This gun symbolizes my heart for you. This gun will protect you as much as my love can. The bullets it fires come from my heart like my love and desire to protect you. If you choose to accept it… Will make you one of the Jawfnovese. And I don’t mean like taking my last name when you married me. You will be a full member and my assistant.”

Oh god.

Karen wanted you to be a part of the family. That really was a bold move. With such a strong symbol as well. You stared at her with a loss of words. That was a huge step to take. Being married to a Crime boss was one thing yet joining the family was another. Then again that was a big step for Karen as well. Letting you so close that that kind of life and putting you that far into harm’s way. She opened the box once more.

Your eyes fixated onto the gun. Unable to come up with any words or feelings to match the colossal moment. Stuttering some garbled mess. Karen had a nervous anticipation about the matter just as you did. Anxious anticipation – in any situation whether you took it or walked away. You looked to her for an of answer. She only looked back at you with nothing to say. Those large emerald eyes having nothing to say.

What were you going to do?

You took the gun.

You took a step closer to Karen in that moment. Becoming more than just her husband. This was a moment were, at first in marriage, bonded your lives together; in taking the gun, wove your lives together as you began down the same road. Karen held a silent excitement. Grafting the largest smile across that sweet face. She closed the box, set it aside and stood. You tried your best to stand as well. She came for a kiss. One well deserved. A delicate hand caressing your cheek caused you to respond in kind.

Seconds held the kiss, before placing her forehead to your chin, giving her a second quick kiss.

“Thank you.”

“I love you.”

I love you.”

 

 

Karen chaperoned you through your halls. Managing a Drunkie little toddler doped up on Opiates to not crash into anything. She led you to stairs that lead upwards and down.

“So what’s your plan, stan?”

“If Erika is a Marcotti family informant, then she has to get information to Helen and the rest of their family. If she gets information to them… Then she how to get to them.”

“Soooooooo how?”

“Torture the shit out of her.”

“…………. I love you.”

Erika was alone. Trapped in a chair in a black room. Hands and feet bound tightly. One single halogen lamp with just enough wattage to tingle the skin and prevent sleep. Dehydration set in as well as hunger and sleep deprivation. The time had been lost as to how long she’d been here. The very least being Karen’s awareness of her moleyness. Time doesn’t move when you can’t see the sun, or a clock. Tumbling of a door’s handle mechanism broken the unyielding buzz of the lamp. A large rectangle opening of light and a single silhouette inside it.

In you come rushing, bashing your fist across the woman’s face. Hitting the woman with no regard for her life or sanity. Punching and punching, not even counting how many strokes you had come by. No words or demands, only violence. You finished with one swift knee to the stomach before leaving. Signaling the end of the assault with a slamming of the door. Golly gee, that was a whirlwind. Erika sat bewildered, battered, and bruised. Completely overtaken in such confusion she couldn’t even render a response for pain. Panicking eyes scattered across the room. Such a whirlwind of events returned to silence in less than ten seconds.

The door opened again to the same silhouette. You came rushing in again, however, this time with a pipe you brought across the side of her head. The most satisfying Ping of your life. Out you went again.

Fear became Erika’s only accomplice. Every so often at random intervals had you coming in with new and inventive ways of punishment. Most of the times were simple beatings. Rushing her down and breaking another bone or teeth. Sometimes you’d recruit one of the girls to help. Now that you were one of Karen’s Captains, as I use that word lightly, you had pull in the family to do what you wanted. Dragging there ever wanting or unwanting Made-Woman to help you torture Erika. Still no words, only destruction.

 

 

Day Two,

Erika looked like hell. Broken nose, black eye, misshapen tibia. Broken bones all over the body in danger of fusing in a deformed state. Beatings were no longer in style. Your own hands were beginning to bruise and break with a claw ready to tear off your own finger. Time was Erika’s biggest enemy. Never knowing when hell was coming returning. She had blood dried around the feet of the chair. Blood from the fingers and toes you had ripped the nail from. She cried. Soft sobbing against uncaringly cold concrete. And in you came once more. A pair of thick pliers in your hand.

She struggled against her bindings. Hoping in some way they were looser than the last six times she pulled at them.

“What do you want Anon?! I’ll tell you anything. I’LL FUCKING TELL YOU ANYTHING!”

It was amusing to have her plead and cry for mercy. It was more amusing as she cried harder when her index nail came out. Was mercy given when Hildegarde’s tooth was ripped out?  When they raped your little girl and beat her? Her words crashed against your emotionless face.

……That finger nail had been the hardest to remove yet.

Just one nail now, maybe another later… if you felt like it.

 

 

Day Three,

Torture is such a delicate art.

 

 

 

 

Day Four,

Torture is such a delicate art.

 

 

 

 

Day Five,

If you’re not careful with your terror, the victim can become desensitized to it. Accustomed to it. The constant abuse and pain becomes something anticipated and therefore loses its horror. The fifth day was a quiet day. The fear of upcoming, yet never received, pain was worse at this point than what you could give. Dying of anticipation, for something that wasn’t coming. Let the silence drive her mad.

“What do you want?” she sobbed.

What a glorious day this was! The sun was high and the fucking birds didn’t wake you for once. Karen had taken special measures to start removing the birds that tormented the cat. Today was a gym day for boxing and then the range. Elizabeth had you on a strict sched-ELIZABETH!

Elizabeth’s room was empty. Little sheep pajamas still nestled on her bed the way she left them. Standing in the doorway of the room washed away Erika’s blood from the mind. Elizabeth had been stifled under the excitement and anger of lovely torture. The faint memory of spooking the little sheep in her room was harder to bear. Elizabeth slept like a brick and had a slight pension of sleepwalking. In the three years she’d been here, six times, you’d found her having slept-walk into cuddling Hildegarde in her bed. Once caught her grazing the kitchen for vegetables. Once making a threeway cuddle after you and Karen had fallen asleep watching a romantic movie together. Twice in the bed of another of Karen’s girl’s. Her room was as sloppy as it always had been. She never made her bed, clothes on the floor, golden blonde wool in front of her makeup mirror on the desk.

You couldn’t blame her for her running out the way she did. Up until you got the call from that informant, you had thought of a life with the woman. She would feel betrayed and destroyed. Betrayed by the closest person in her life. You put a knife in her back and she was family.

 

You couldn’t leave her out there. Writhing in pain, probably curled up with an empty syringe.

 

You had to find her. Erika wasn’t going anywhere anytime soon.

 

Karen caught you getting dressed in your room. She stayed back. Noting your distraught mood. How slowly you crossed and pulled the tie. Your lethargic motion in grabbing your jacket.

 

“You love her?” That felt like a trapped question. “I loved her like a sister. She protected us so many times. She put an ‘x’ on her back when she decided to leave the Marcotti and join us. She put a lot on the line for us. I know you love her.”

 

You’d turn to see Karen right behind you. She had a slightly turnt frown.

 

“I love you, Karen. You will always be my, one and only.”

 

“I know. I love you. Find our girl, huh? I’m gonna to tell a few girls to come with you.”

 

“I don’t need an escort.”

 

“I’m not letting you leave this house without one. You’ve stirred so much shit you have a price on your head somewhere. You’re not leaving this house without an entourage until this shit blows downwind. I will not lose you because you want to be a knight in shining armor. Fuck your Jinko pride.”

 

She had that sternness in her eyes. Digging her heels down. She wouldn’t budge in this and nothing you could do would change her mind. No point in arguing against it. She straightened your tie. You went for the door.

 

“Oh and… uhhh, Anon.”

 

“Yeah?”

 

“If you uhh… did… anything… with her. Don’t tell me. I won’t ask you to apologize.”

 

That was hard to swallow down. At the very least you knew she had taken to her words of reformation. Then again your silence on the matter gave her the answer she perhaps knew but didn’t want to hear.

 

“I’ll call you up some girls…” You dropped your gaze to the ground. Looking away from her as that last statement was abit too much to take. She’d forgive you in one stroke, does one night of fun equal three years though? Didn’t hurt that bad then. Karen came to you, pulling your chin to meet your vision, giving you a kiss. Nuzzling your forehead, leaving on another kiss. “Wait here.”

 

A group of four girls came to approach you. All rather familiar, Katie: a Bison, Anura: the cat, Meli: the Grizzly, and… uhhh…  Well, it was time to get going.

 

Where were you supposed to start looking? In the three years you’ve known her, she was only at your side. Rarely, if at all, had she left for Karen on personal assignment. You had no idea where she could’ve gotten off to or where she had gone and for the moment your only idea was to do – something. You were at a panic, rushing into the city for a destination you had no idea. Ok ok, think, think, where could girlie-girl have gone? Shes got a hummer, but no where to go, a bank account, a phone- A PHONE! That gave an idea. Rivers at the NYPD could tap it. You brought Karen up on the phone.

 

“Karen, Karen, I need you to call someone for me.”

 

“Ok?”

 

“Rivers – at the NYPD, I don’t have his number or the location of his precinct.”

 

“When the fuck did you get in touch with Rivers at the P.D.?”

 

“Around the time I curb-stomped Matilda. Can you get it for me?”

“What’re you going to do with it?”

“Gonna tap Elizabeth’s phone Mom.”

 

“Ok, I’ll text it. Love you.”

 

“Love you.”

 

An hour later you showed up to the precinct. The other girls of your entourage grew a tad anxious. Hesitation held them back from getting out the car. Slowly getting out to follow you, you calmed nerves by holding them back. No need for a personal retinue in a police station.

 

A criminal in the midst of a police department. Deep undercover. You approached the front desk to a short red hair woman behind the counter. She had a humanish top which must’ve meant her animal side was hidden under the desk, no clue on what she could be.

 

“Uhhh hi! Uhmmmm… I have an appointment to speak to Detective Rivers. Could you possibly point me to his office or… desk… or…. whatever.” Smooth. Straight to the point and no chance for asking names.

 

She had a blank glare of boredom. “Sign in please.” Handing you a tablet. Oh thats fine, let me just put my name, ya’know, that’s tied to a Mob Boss and probably wanted for murder yourself. Hopefully she wouldn’t notice the squiggles you wrote on a line. You handed the tablet back to her, carefully covering the line you wrote with a thumb. She took it back without so much as glancing at the paper. She motioned you off deeper into the complex, past a set of double doors and metal detectors into a large common area of desks for the common beat. “Detective Rivers is out at the moment but should be returning shortly.” River’s office was a decent corner office, tucked away from everyone, right next to the shitter. River’s office’s door was wide open and glancing in saw nobody home. Spot on observation. You took a seat in one of his chairs and waited it out.

 

About forty-five minutes had past in the wait. Rivers’ stomping became apparent across the common room. The heavy feet of a stressed out cop about to become horrific when he spots you. Rivers came in to see you sitting there in all your glory. An exasperated sigh escaped his lips, shrinking a few inches in a shrug at having to deal with your bullshit.

 

“Fuck you doing here?” He said, closing the window blinds of his office. “I can’t be seen with you.” Then sitting behind his desk.

 

“Well, I figured since, I was in the area so I was going to drop by with donuts and coffee and see if you wanted to go to a broadway after shift.”

 

“Don’t be a smart ass, what do you want?”

 

“I need your help.”

 

“And you’re going to force me?”

 

“No, I’m going to ask you and that if you do this for me then I won’t ask anything again.”

 

“Nothing again huh? Then it must be important. What is it?”

“Tap a phone.”

 

“Ok… not that hard. Strange you need – just- that. Need to listen in on someone?”

 

“No, I just need to find someones location.”

 

“Even easier, just gimmie a number and I can ping their phone in  five minutes.”

 

“555-5309”

 

Rivers took that down on an old donut crusted napkin.

 

“Alright, but Ima need you to leave. I only need that number and for obvious reasons I can be seen with you.”

 

Couldn’t argue with that.

 

“Once I get you that location, you’re not going to contact me again…”

 

“If I get what I want, I will not contact you again, if I don’t… then I’ll keep hounding you until get it.”

 

The prospect of getting out from under the hand of a mobster would warrant taking anything the mobby wanted. Something this simple would’ve been stupid to pass up. You got up to leave and simply made a direct path out of the precinct. Getting away from all these cops would let the hairs on your neck settle. Walking out of the oven you went back to your car and just blow your time until Rivers came back. Ice cream it was.

 

Meanwhile crashed out on a bar of some upscale bar in the city…

 

“Miss you’ve been here for three days, I’m cutting you off. Dont you have a boyfriend or someone thats worried about you?” The bartender questioned.

 

A little white head rolled backwards on the bar for two glossy eyes to peer up.

 

“Oh ho hooooooo~ Noooooooooooooooo! Myyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy boyfriend, decided he wanted to go back to his old laaaaaaaaaadyyyyyyyyyy~ Myyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy boyfriend chose a cheating skank over someone who loved him. Someone who truuuuuuuuuuuuuly caaaaaaaaaaared for him, eheheheh hic!”

 

“Yeeeeeeeeeeeeeah, Im cutting you off.”

 

“Hey! HEY!” Liz rasped out in some vain attempt to stop the barkeep from wrestling away the remains of a good Johnnie Walker from her cold drunk hands. Little meeps of complaint came out in the epic struggle. Elizabeth splayed across the bartop in defeat. Days old makeup smeared across an otherwise pretty face. The bartender had taken the bottle across the counter to tend to other patrons. This gravy train of pain had to keep rolling.

 

Elizabeth gracefully vaulted over the bar with a resounding thud. Wide eyed staring at the bartender whom stared at her with matching confusion. She swiped two bottles of the bubbly finest and bolted as best stumbling legs could. Elizabeth – being rough – was an understatement. She looked like shit, especially after a three day drinking binge. If the late winter of New York City doesn’t kill her, her liver certainly will.

 

She stumbled around the streets, periodically destroying these bottles a swig at a time.

 

“Fuck you lookin’ at?!” Belligerently yelling at cautious eyes. Swinging her bottles around in threatening manner to those that stepped too close. Then came the tears. The tears came as waterfalls. Elizabeth collapsed in the middle of the sidewalk, letting go. Everyones eyes were brought to her but none were too keen on stopping to help. Husbands, wives, daughters and sons kept meandering past. Even those children that wanted to give the sheep so much as a hug were pulled away by their mothers. Elizabeth opened her eyes to the falling rain. The myriad of eyes locked solely on her allowed her to regain her bearings, if only for a moment.

 

“FUCK YA’LL LOOKING AT?!” Liz struck out again. Wiping away tears to deny they were there. Smearing mascara across an already soiled face. Elizabeth carried on drinking and swearing. Children learning new words today.

 

She ended a tirade slumped in an alley. Halfway through her second bottle. Timing that alcohol like a champ to stave off the incoming blackout as long as possible. Vision doubled after the third day binge. Hey thats a nice four pistols ya’ got there.

 

“Pockets, girlie. Wallet and watch.”

 

Ok, so those were actually guns. Two thuggish looking women held two cold barrels pointed at Sheep’s face. Both of whom were stockier and much more ‘street’ looking. Neither of which had the maddening professionalism of the Mob.

 

“Ok… Ok… one second, hic” Elizabeth slowly rose to her feet. Showing both hands. Assuming the position. Not the first time, definitely not the last.

 

“Wallet…” She reached for her breast pocket to hand it over.

 

“Watch…” Taking the platinum plated Breitling off the wrist. A three year anniversary present from Karen.

 

“Phone…” Left pocket.

 

“Gun.” The infamous .44 Taurus from her other breast coat. Instantaneously deleting one of the thug’s faces. Then training the gun to the other. If the wafting smell of shit wasn’t already affluent in the streets of New York it would be now.

 

“FUCK!” The thug jolted in terror after seeing her accomplice drop. Elizabeth trained the gun between hazel eyes with the proficiency of a professional. No matter the alcohol content of the sheep’s blood, that gun stayed calmer than Hugh Hefner’s bed (cuz hes old).

 

The Thug was blind-sided and frozen. Everyone wants to be a gangsta until it’s time to do gangsta shit. In the span between the silence, the last little wannabe bolted off. Elizabeth lowered her gun and looked down at the shining chrome. Welcoming chrome, but no, Elizabeth ain’t no bitch.

 

At least the kisses of the rain brought a comforting chill to the face.

 

An unfamiliar buzzing came over the taste of the ice cream. A neutral ringtone from your phone signified an unfamiliar number. Every number in your phone was tied to some popular song of the day, call it feline compulsiveness.

 

“Hello?”

 

“Jawfnovese.”

 

“Rivers.”

 

“I got a ping on that phone, coming from Brooklyn. Also the report of a large caliber weapon firing in the vicinity near the triangulation.”

 

“Sounds like my girl.”

 

“Alright, I’ll give you the location. I can old off units for about thirty minutes. Are we done?”

 

“I get my girl, then we’re done.” You hung up without a goodbye, to accentuate your point. The other girls with you glared at each other from behind their ice-cream, now fully aware with your antics. Rising with a cone in your hand, you made a brisk pace out to your car. Thunder rolled across the sky with rain to follow. Had to huff it across the city.

 

Being early in the afternoon had light amounts of traffic. Thusly, no gridlock either. It was a swift pace under a blanket of light drizzles to the Bronx. A short run made tedious by twists and turns and red lights. The area was known to be a “bad” part of the Bronx. Luckily you had brought the possible hate of many women who feared your wife more than any other creature alive. Any other male found in this area would usually be wearing some kind’ve pink or maybe some kinda seafoam blue on them and maybe short shorts. Looking over your clothes, you seemed a tad out of place. Being in a fine Giorgiana Armani suit, red tie and button up, finely styled hair… you were a pretty man. Like a well paid whore, an upper crust courtesan, such skill to cater to four women at once. Actually mulling it over thats exactly what you were… kind’ve… to a very rich mistress… with lots of love<3

 

You found your way through back road and mainstreet to the address River’s had given you. You parked in as relative as a safe spot you could imagine. This wasn’t a too familiar part of the city. Rather to say, completely unfamiliar. Such a pampered life Karen given you that she’d try her damndest to keep you out of. Two beeps of the horn was a signal of escaping security as you put more distance between you and the car. Most of the community that traversed were of that “thug” variety. Timberland boots, Mika Ecko, just the kind of people mama said to stay away from. Luckily your girls rounded you, two on both sides and two behind.

 

You avoided the foot-traffic as best you could. Not giving anyone the time of day or stares. The cat-calls were easy to tune out. The staring eyes not so, but you were scaled up in fine attire… a very pretty man. The most succulent eye-candy.

 

“Ay baybay! You need a place to walk to tonight?”

“Its pretty dangerous out here for a good lookin’ guy like you. Lemmie keep you safe!”

“Weather starting to look a lil’ bad sexy, No need to stay dry, I’ll keep you wet!”

“You may not be centaur but that don’t mean I can’t ride you all night long!”

“Hey baby wanna be my dragoon and mount me hard?”

“Wanna be part of the dragon’s hoard, cause you look like a real keeper”

“You look lost, thats not the direction to my house”

“They say nice guys finish first but do you want to prove em wrong?”

“My house ain’t the only thing you’ll be coming into tonight!”

“My species might not be tameable but I’m always willing to make an exception.”

“It might be just because I’m breathing fire but you’re lookin’ pretty hot”

“I’ll turn your face into a glazed donut!”

 

You kept them away through ignorance. Until a loudly cracking drew your attention back. The Bison, Katie straight up dropped one of the thugettes with a headbutt to the dome.

 

“You watch your FUCKING mouth when talking to a gentleman. You piece of street shit.” You went to Katie’s side, grabbing her arm and pulling her away. There always was this animosity between the more sophisticated families and street gangs. One called the other a pack of zip-suited bitches while the other called them classes sacks of shit.

 

“Let’em talk shit Kate.” Intent to keep moving. Everyone you had seen cross that alley casually ignored it entirely. You couldn’t because there was a fucking dead body there.

 

A situation of a “not my problem” scenario. You went into the alley to inspect the body. Pulling out a length of iron from a nearby dumpster to flip the body over revealed a bullet wound to the face. In close inspection made the wound out to be from a rather large caliber. Elizabeth’s calling card alright. Exactly how much time had passed was unknown, but judging by the fact that you weren’t already in handcuffs was a simple indication the cops had not arrived yet but could be at any second. You did have a gun on you after all and the presence of a dead stiff with a face-hole wouldn’t pass over with the Five-O. This isn’t where I parked my bullets, Officer. Smooth. The girls with you looked around the alley, taking up their own little investigations.

 

You bolted off down the alleyway with rebar in hand, tossing it out at next convenience. Well off away from the body, but now back to square one without a lead. Snitches get stitches also meant that there probably weren’t any eye witnesses or anyone willing to talk. What would Elizabeth be doing down here? The fuck would she go?

 

No clues, nothing.

 

“Hey! Rivers!”

 

“What now?”

 

“I need another ping. She’s not here. And make it fast.”

 

“Another? Jesina Christ.”

 

“Just get it done.”

 

Elizabeth was out here somewhere. You had to do something.

 

Ok, Ok, Ok, what do I do, what do I do.

 

She had to be down here for some reason. Off of the island, out of Jawfnovese – for that matter you’d no idea who controlled this area. She had to be pretty ballsy to come here. Was that it? Was it because that despite this crime ridden part of the city she felt comfortable? Then perhaps she walks the streets. At least that you had a theory to go on while Rivers pinged the network. If she was comfortable then she knows this area. What place would have a lot of foot traffic? Food? A bar? Liz had been missing for a few days now, she would’ve gotten around.

It wasn’t much longer before police sirens came. Rivers was able to get you a few more minutes than anticipated.

 

You dipped into a nearby bar with troupe. Slipping out of the now barreling rain. Flipping the lapel to rid yourself of any free water. The bar was a quaint one. Holding an old time feel to it with large quantities of polished wood and mirrors. Cozy. Might be a good place to bring Karen for a few drinks, make an event out of it. The bar was surprisingly populated at mid-day. Then the smell of steak gave the bar the scene of a grill.

 

A coy female gaze came to meet your own. All in tantalizing eyes followed you across the room. Halting any motion to follow you across the room. Eyes of desire that quietly led a dance across the room. To the seat right in front of her. Your eyes locked to hers matched the rhythm of her lead. A Fox-y bartender gave you a sexy tango across her floor. She was a predator of men. You gave your girls a command to relax and leave you be for abit.

 

“Anything I can… get you, hun?” Voice of silk. You’ve been in the game too long to see the flirtations coming a mile away.

 

“Oh, something light. I don’t want to be going home with anyone too early.” She smirked.

 

“Quite the suit. You must be someone important.”

 

“You could say I have a lot of women following me.” You gave a slight lean onto the bar. Playing a little interest. It was still fun to play into the games after all and she seemed to be the hunting type. That or she just wanted to make you feel good for a better tip.

 

“Oooooooh~ You keep many women wanting?” She slid some kind of fruity looking orange drink across the counter.

 

“Im just a guy who knows what he wants, I don’t like games. It’s not my fault feeeeeeew can give that to me.” You even led with a little lip play. She was eating it up.

 

“You seem like a guy who knows what he likes. I’m a girl that knows what a guys likes.”

 

“So what’re you proposing?”

 

“You find a girl that can give you what you want.”

 

“And you think you’re that girl?” Every word brought the both of you a little closer.

 

“Your words not mine.” Ok, that was smooth. She had slid another of the same drink to you. It was good, fruity and delicious.

 

“Heheheheh, You’re a sly little snake aren’t you.”

 

“Snakes have nothing on Foxes, dear. Foxes are a bit more clever. So what is it you need?” You could feel her breath on your lips now. This little fox thought she had you in her palm. Little did she knew you were pulling her stringers. After all… you were a pretty man.

 

“I need information.”

 

“My phone number?”

 

“Confidence looks good on you.”

 

“Better on my floor.” Ok, reel it back Foxy.

 

“I’m looking for a girl, wondered if she wandered through here.”

 

“Trouble in paradise?”

 

“I’m not in your bed yet.” Throw her off her game. She had to take a step back to regain herself.  She held a slight blush. She was eating you up. So were your girls in earshot, could catch them softly cackling, knowing your game.

 

“We get a lot of traffic – sometimes unique traffic. Sometimes a handsome man in a suit. Don’t know how much I can help you though. This isn’t a movie or some book where a bartender can solve all your problems.”

 

“Sheep. White hair and wool. Suit – red shirt – black tie. Little shorter than me. Coming around here? Might be a tad fucked up.”

 

“Now thaaaaaaaats specific. You knew one came through here? We had one in here a few days ago. Roughed up as all hell. Looked like absolute shit. Drank from when we opened to late night. Paced herself well so she meant to be here all day despite shooting down hard stuff. Looked a little tweaky as well like drugs. Cocaine maybe, or some kinda downer.”

 

“Anything else?”

 

“Crying, lots of crying. We were gonna kick her out but she was quiet and kept to herself… and she paid well. Former girlfriend? Why would you want a piece of work like her?”

 

“Personal reasons. Might have to ask me again later. What’d she do?”

 

“Bought some drinks, then bottles, took ‘em and left. She knows how to hold his liquor.”

 

“Any idea where she went?”

 

“She went out, followed the sidewalk that way.”

 

“Alright thanks. What do I owe you?”

 

“For you?” She learned against the bar, tracing leather gloved fingers along yours. Then would reach to the side to grab a pen and place it before you. “Your number.”

 

“You want it now or tomorrow morning?” You gave her your best flirtatious smirk and lip bite. Taking up the pen you wrote a few scribbles onto the paper before teasing with a feinted kiss before raising to leave. She took it up. Eyes following you on your way out. She clenched the paper, giving you that coy feminine finger wave out the door. Excitement forced her to open the paper to get even your name.

 

Only for her face to drop at the sight of two words:

 

I M   M A R R I E D

 

The girls with you were in an uproar in hearing that.

 

You had to give a slight jog to make it under another awning. Whipping the phone back out to hit up Rivers.

 

“Oh my god. What?!”

 

“I got reservations at Per Se, I wanted to know-Whats up with the fucking tracking?”

 

“She’s no longer at the last ping, I had to switch towers. Start over. I’ve almost got a new place for her now.”

 

“Ok whatever. I also need locations of known drug dens where I’m at.”

 

“Why?”

“Can you get me a list or not?”

 

“Yeah. I’ll get you some locations. I will give you a location when I get one.”

 

It was a few minutes after that Rivers had sent a list some known and watched dens in what you could assume were actually the more ‘run down’ areas of Brooklyn. That gave you at least one point of reference. This was too literal a game of cat & mouse. Back to the car and over to hell.

 

The address was in the shit part of town. Boarded doors and windows. Trash in the street. For a second time you were on a drug den doorstep, a little more well protected this time. You knocked at the door. No answer. Time to act with the power Karen gave you.

 

“Break it down.” Your will be done. Katie, being the largest of your girls, put a swift hoof into the door, blasting it off it’s hinges. Two of the girls entered first with guns drawn. Gun pops echoed through the house. The girls taking care of some unwanted guests. You entered with the other two to a living room that held no injuries. Wat. Cowering men and women in the room held no injuries. Bullet holes were in the wall. Warning shots. Guns, drugs, rock and roll were laid about the room amongst tweakers and gangbangers. Anura and Meli drew out their guns as you entered.

 

You were framed by a pack of armed women around the living room’s entry arc, accidentally renaissance. All you were missing was a shaft of light and a finger pointing upward. Everyone’s eyes were on you. This place was absolutely filthy. You had to just meander around the room to take it all in. Used needles on the floor perhaps reused in a moment of personal emergency. Broken glass, bottles, blackened crack pipes.

 

“Quite the shit hole.” You announced to no response. Walking around the room more, this house could’ve been a home to a beautiful family of four with some work. This house visit was a hope for information. You took a slow seat at the cleanest part of the couch. Using a magazine to brush off the scraps. Eyes moving between each and everyone of these perps while they stared back. Legs crossed like a good little boy momma taught.

 

“Sheep.”

 

“I don’t know what the f-”

 

“Sheep.”

 

“I don’t know what you mean, I… what do youAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH” You silently gave a signal that stoked Anura to break some fingers.

 

“Sheep?”

 

“SHEEP WHAT?!”

 

“White Sheep.”

 

“What about a white sheep?” Anura came closer. “OKAY! OKAY! WHAT WHAT ABOUT A WHITE SHEEP?!”

 

“I’m looking for a white sheep that might’ve come by here.”

 

“MIA?” A voice in panic, but not the right sheep. Another signal to Anura. They were quick to crack before Anura broke another. “EMMA? ELIZABETH? OLIVIA?!” Wait wait wait, your Liz? What’re the odds that your Liz actually came here?

 

“Elizabeth?”

 

“YEAH?!”

 

“Quiet down.”

 

“YE-yeah. I know a few sheeps with white hair, very common.”

 

“Whats she doing here?”

 

“She came to get a fix. She’s fucked up man. She’s been back here for a few days. I think she’s making rounds through a few places.”

 

“What’d she buy?”

 

“Coke, that is usually just her-her-her t-thing man.”

 

“Will she be here today?”

“I don’t know man!”

 

“Anur-”

 

“I DON’T FUCKING KNOW MAN! SHE JUST WANDERS IN!” Seems like he was telling the truth. You’re not exactly going to be telling your dealer your schedule. So then what? Back to square one.

 

“Where is she?”

“Fuck if I know, I don’t keep up with my tweakers.” This shit was getting nerve-wracking. What the fuck were you supposed to do? Your girl was out there in the streets doing who the fuck knows what. Maybe left rolled over in a ditch somewhere.

 

“Break the place.” The girls went around destroying anything and everything. Value wouldn’t be found anywhere. The tweakers and gangbangers looking angry and annoyed but ultimately held back. The couch was destroyed when you rose. End tables smashed. A large hole put through a T.V. Then the girls got to the drugs. Katie even lit a rag on fire to throw into the drywall. What the fuck Katie?

 

You had no idea if they knew or not, but you did want something to destroy. Take out the anger on these low-lifes. Maybe they would break and give him even a sliver of something worthwhile. Maybe…

 

Nothing. They just stayed quiet. Well, this venture was entirely useless.

 

“Girls… Out…” They followed you out. They had their backs to the door on retreat. Keeping eyes for any trick that wanted to pull something on your way out.

 

“Well, I know how Karen feels most of the time.” A rush of divine power..

 

“Jawfnovese… I got her.”

 

Rivers came through. The black hummer was sitting outside a rundown building that once appeared to be a small, but multi-leveled hotel. Quaint.

 

“Sir, you sure about this?”

 

“Yes.” You held a brief pause while looking from window to window. “I’m gonna go in alone.” The girls looked between themselves. Concerned more for their own well being.

 

“Sir… we uhh…”

 

“You go in, she bolts. Just stay outside and cover the exits. I’ll take care of this.” You went over Elizabeth’s car with meticulous eye. Firstly making sure she wasn’t already in it, that would’ve been a godsend. Second to make sure no one was waiting inside that could be a little bit of a problem. Eerily empty. Strangely clean.

 

You withdrew gun and made way inside. The girls reluctantly forming perimeter at all corners of the building while you made a suicidal trek inside.

 

Despite being absolutely dilapidated, it had a charming feel to it. Where nature slowly begins creeping back into industry. Shattered windows, missing doors, tattered furniture, waning wallpaper, empty rooms, lots of empty rooms. The seldom evidence of trash once signified life here, but even that was dirtied to the point that another person hadn’t been here in months.

 

A wonder how well the rooms stayed relatively intact. Probably a complete bankruptcy in the owners just bailing the situation leaving everything behind. The second level was much of the same. One room had a stream of water surrounded by a small oasis.

 

No people, no bodies. Seldom sounds and creaks pulled your gun on the dancing shadows. Still no signs of life. Then mumbling.

 

Familiar mumbling of a little drunken voice you’d come to know over the past few years then a crashing. You rose your gun to the noise and followed through to it. Around the corner was a suit-clad, white haired, horned woman slamming something into a vending machine plexiglas. You trained your gun on her. Moving on closer as slowly as possible. You kick at a can to signify your existence.

 

“ Whosa FUCK?!” She whipped around with a large Taurus Bull aimed at your face. “No… no… No. No! NO! WHY ARE YOU HERE?!” She screeched. Even firing off a shell that went… somewhere. Hell, couldn’t even feel it whiz by. Wide miss.

 

“WHATTHEFUCK?!” You tried to scream over the tinnitus.  

 

“Why are you here?! Why won’t you go away! Leave me alone!” She screamed with another bullet letting loose, this time being nipped by the shockwave.

 

“Put the fucking gun down!”

 

She was hesitant to move. Taking one step forward with a resounding, “No.” that was louder than any bullet. She was different. Strange to see such a hardened woman, a mafia hitwoman who never so much as flinched in pulling a trigger on anyone was here trembling, cracking in voice, covered in tears, makeup that hadn’t been removed in days. All brought down by the heart. How did Mom say it? A woman always had her heart in the hands of a man?

 

“Ok, Liz. At least, let’s just put the gun down. Look – I’ll put mine down.” You held your gun up, showing it existed, yes, there it is, very nice. Slowly setting it on the ground. She lowered her gun – slowly. “Ok Liz. We just…” Her gun sprang back up when you took a step forward. “…ok.”

 

“Turn around and walk out. Go away.”

 

“I’m not gonna go home without you Liz.”

 

“So you can keep leading me on? Keep fucking with me – while she fucks with you!?”

 

“No. No. I just want to take you back home, where you belong.”

 

“I DON’T FUCKING BELONG ANYWHERE! I am my own goddamn woman.” The gun trembled in her hands. “You’re exactly the kinda’ guy my mom warned me about. Big beautiful eyes to lie to me with.”

 

“Elizabeth, I never lied to yo-”

 

“BULLSHIT! She cheated on you for who the fuck knows how long, I had a crush on you for years. You played me just like she played you! Why? Revenge? You used me to get back at her didn’t you? Like some kinda fucking toy for your Jinko instincts! I was just a plaything for you! You went right back to her and told her you fucked around behind her back huh?!”

 

“No Liz. I promise you I-” She fired the gun off to stop you from taking anymore steps.

 

“I don’t want anything to do with you.”

 

“Liz, I love you.”

 

“You shut the fuck up. Shut the fuck! I don’t want to hear those… lies … from you.”

 

“Liz, you know me. I would never lie to you.” Her gun was thoroughly trained center mass as you took one and two cautious steps forward. “Karen doesn’t know.” The sturdiness of her form broke slightly. “No one knows.” Another step “I had sex with you because I love you. Not for some kind of game. I would’ve ran away with you Elizabeth. Start our own lives far away.” By now you were not but ten feet away. “But I was tricked, tricked into thinking Karen slipped up. I never played a trick on you, I LOVE YOU ELIZABETH!

 

…but I never stopped loving Karen.”

 

She was faltering now. Having to accept defeat. Coming down from a multi day binge of alcohol and drug fueled high. Unable to take care of even her basic needs. Five feet away from her now and she thoroughly started her collapse. She lowered her gun and went straight into a bawl. You were able to safely approach. Wrap your arms around the broken girl whom did the same to you. Pressing her face into your chest, making a mess upon your suit. There were no words to offer. No sweet words to numb the pain. Only this embrace was any sort of consolation. Sway her back and forth one would a baby.

 

Her grip was held tight to keep something close that was fleeting away. Through sobbing you could make out three quiet words.

 

“I love you.”

 

You withheld response. So elated to finally have her back, but pained in that she will continue suffering at your side. You pulled her head up. Looking lovingly into those destroyed baby blue eyes. Giving her a deeply passionate kiss that she fought for more of. You held her. Holding until she was able to regain composure.

 

“You ready to go back home?”

 

“…No.” Wait what? “I’m not coming back. I just… no, I don’t want to.”

 

“But… w-what?”

 

“I’m not coming back. I don’t – I just… No.” She pulled herself away from you. In that moment roles changed to now you having to hold onto something that was fleeting away. She lowered herself to pick her gun up off the floor, wiping snot off on her arm. “I can’t come back.”

 

“What’re you going to do?”

 

“I don’t know.”

 

The both of you stayed there. Staring through each other silently.

 

Elizabeth was the first to make motion. Breaking gaze with anything besides you. The tears started to come back as she just walked off. You couldn’t exactly tell what it was, but you couldn’t chase after her. Not even raise a hand with the word “Stop”, just staring at the mess she was. There was no point to chasing her. She had made her mind. If it was possible to stop her it would already be done. You turned to leave just as she did.

 

“Everything… ok… sir?”

 

“Lets just go home.”

 

The girls were a bit down, but having no real emotion tie to the situation didn’t give them any pause. The two girls here motioned out for the others to regroup.

 

Two girls followed you up the stairs of the underground garage. The others stayed in the Hummer to take back out of the garage. Few had the privilege of staying in the Queen’s mansion, although it seemed that one spot was going to be open. Karen was in the kitchen with a phone up to her ear.

 

“Hey, Let me call you back, Anon just got home… Ok, love you too mom. Bye.” She set the phone down before coming over to you. Taking note of your mess of attire and distraught look to answer any questions. Karen took you by the hand and led you to bed, undressing you and herself along the way and letting your clothes fall to the floor. She pulled you right onto the covers, right on top of her. Stroking your hair ever so gently. Wrapping large leathery wings around you like a blanket.

 

Day Six,

 

Today was a more a somber day than most. Elizabeth hadn’t been there for a while now, but this morning was the realization she wasn’t ever going to be. The warmth of the dragon was comforting though. You gently nuzzle your face into her chest to stir her into waking. She did with a wide stretch and in so allowed you to get up. A shower was the first thing on your mind. Still caked up in makeup and dried tears. Would be good to attempt to scald away the sadness. Karen shortly joined you. Taking care of your body herself. Polishing her gem back to its brightest shine, or so she wanted. She tried her best to put a smile on your face. Setting you down on the shower chair would give her better room to work you. She took a bar of soap to your curves. Scrubbing as sexually as she could to bring your mind to her. Arm between the tits, ass grinding as a loofah, but your attention was still elsewhere. Until she took it to heart to ever so lovingly fuck you into the moment. That brought you back. You embraced her into a deep kiss as she rode you.

 

Torture was such a delicate – No, fuck it’s not. It’s just knowing when to stop so the victim doesn’t pass out. Then probably throwing in some tantric stuff to keep the edge of the senses sharp to the pain. Goddammit, being a Jinko took the edge out of this. Like it was too easy, your genetic heritage making this too damn easy to get into. No, it was Elizabeth still being away that was such a distraction. Just can’t get into the torture. You had to leave flustered.

 

“Anon, she’s fading.” Erika’s eyes were starting to roll into the back of her head.

 

“Hop her up.” The girl besides you had a medical bag. Sifting through the contents for a clear glass vial and a syringe. Epinephrine. The woman injected the dose into the Cyclops. Bringing the writing spazzing mess to a halt as her body stabilized. Then it was another chemical of Morphine. Dammit Erika, pull yourself together. We didn’t even start for today and you can’t take anymore.

 

Day Seven,

 

Today was a bit easier on the noggin, after two days to rest and reset; then Karen fuckign you senseless most of it. Offered a mental clarity that just came with time. Nothing was on the brain except a good hearty breakfast and the sound of a dentist’s polishing saw.

 

Today was a much finer day for torture.

 

Because after all, Torture is such a delicate art.

 

Tonight was a small date night between you and Karen.

 

Only now occurring that you had gone from being a madman torturing a Cyclops for the past week, to rewatching past home movies of a time before Hildegard or even the marriage. You up on stage playing your heart out. Flirting with Karen from arms length. Then the first time the two of your actually touched. You stopped just after a solo, extending a hand to reach out to hers.

 

“I remember that night. I think that was theeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee second time I saw you.” Her eyes rolled up to meet yours. Taking a moment to kiss your chest.

 

“Were you stalking me?” You piqued with a smile. Bashfully hiding her face in response.

 

“I was. That was actually your third show I went to. I had to stalk you across the city. I wanted that Jinko diiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiick.” Laughing, she climbed up your sat up ontop you to give kiss.

 

The movie transitioned between much of your lives together. Karen taking you to different beaches for vacation, water park, Karen with a large stomach, shopping, baby and toddler Hildegarde, an all around montage of life. Dragons certainly had a love for family. Maybe why she used her middle name instead of her first.

 

“Ohhhh I seeeeeee, all you wanted was some dick?” Teasing now.

 

“I found a hoe and turned him into a husband.” She targeted some sensitive spots with those fingers. Ears, lower back, armpits, if you’re ticklish you can say shes tickling man, Im doing this for you guys, so have fun with the idea of affection. She stoped, lowering her chin to rest on your chest. Golden Lily eyes stared ever so longingly into yours. “I love you, Anon.”

 

“I love you, Leblanc.” For some reason she always prefered being called by her middle name, her mother’s name. Saving her first name for special occasions always preserved a beautiful quality to it. One she liked in moderation. If there was anything you could call Karen it was a family-woman. Ok, lets utterly neglect the entirety of the cheating for a moment, Karen was a woman who absolutely adored her family. She had a hellaciously strong bond with her parents, had a strong connection with her siblings, and you and Hildegarde were the center of her universe.

 

Then there were these little date nights. Karen did love to shower you with gifts, apparel, travel, and otherwise throw money at anything to impress, but her absolute favorite were these little moments. What she called “Memory Moments”. Part of life where memories are made. Come to think of it, quite a bit of the home movies featured just that. Long walks through central park, sharing a bucket of ice cream in the backyard overlooking the city at night, and … a doorbell?

 

Ping-pong echoed through the house with complete confusion by every resident of the mansion. Who the hell would be coming this late at night? Behold, Janet appeared in the home theatre’s doorway.

 

“Mr. Anon… its for you.” What the shit?

 

Karen rolled off of you so you could rise. Curious now who would actually need you in any capacity. Janet backed up to make way and Karen followed shortly thereafter. The front door was closed, could even be nice enough to let them in Janet, damn, cold hearted. You went to open the door…

 

“Elizabeth?”

 

She was a crying mess at the door. In the same rough same as you left her. She was crying, constantly trying to wipe her eyes free of stinging tears. You took her into the hardest hug you could muster and she did the same. Your own tears were hard enough to fight back.

 

“I’m sorry.”

 

“It’s ok.” You muttered, dragging her inside the house. Karen took notice of her form as well. There was a minor tense moment in anticipating Karen’s reaction. Elizabeth felt a tad fearful of any repercussions as well. Surprised when Karen approached and hugged her as well.

 

“I’m happy you’re safe, Liz.” Karen muttered.

 

“Th-Thank you ma-ma’am.”

 

“Go take a shower and get a good meal.”

 

“T-Thank you.” Elizabeth meandered off to her room. It was an elation to see her back home. In her proper home with as much of a… family that could be offered. You looked to Karen with the happiest of expressions. Who looked back with a meager smile. Happy that she was indeed back, but happier that you were so ecstatic.

 

Then got serious’d. “Do not kill her.”

 

“I’m not Anon.”

 

Day Eight,

 

Open went the door with a backdrop of a light from hell. Erika certainly won’t be seeing any lights at the end of the tunnel whenever it’s her time. This would be too damn traumatizing to see any form of light. You didn’t come rushing in at her like so many times before. You came in with but a single chair, Karen at your side, and one of your girls at the other. Only you entered before her in the light. You had a chair which allowed you to plop down in front of her. Facing the back of the chair to her so you could rest on the chair’s back.

 

Erika was broken. In every way, shape, and form. Nothing about her remained the same or would be thereafter. Face was covered in dried blood from a nose turned ninety degrees. Her singular eye was red with blood. Broken blood vessels would be the least of her problems with shattered. Occipital fractures, shattered orbital fractures, multiple broken ribs. Internal bleeding by the liter, internal puncturing, fracturing cervical disks, vaporized thoracic disks. Her right foot was turned inward enough for the ankle to break through the skin.

 

“What… do you want?”

 

“I don’t want anything.”

 

“I’ll give… anything. Just stop. please.” Poor sweet Erika. A week ago, she’d be a girl you could take out to dinner, but now we were only just getting started. You stood. Approached her. In a panicked frenzy, she did all she could to try and force herself, bound and helpless, away from the Devil himself. Fear gripped pain for she even was willing to put pressure on that wretched ankle to move. Freezing as you stood over her. What next? What next? Her body was too broken to continue any beatings. She’d be dead in the next couple of hours from sepsis or shock if you continued much further. Luckily, there were always other avenues often overlooked in torture. Many people only see the shell of what makes a human. Only the physicality of what you can touch is what can be applied. Blame your feline instincts for always wanting to “play with your food.”

 

Luckily for her, the beatings would stop. The torture could only become worse from here on. Physical torture was always the weakest. Physical wounds always had this terrible knack for healing with enough time. Mental pain, however…

 

She eyed you over wondering what inner circle of hell you had planned next. You reached into your pocket for a simple device, a razor blade. What good would a razor blade be against such thick clothing? You had to disrobe her, one article at a time. First her jacket, then blood drenched shirt, her ruined bra, torn skirt, and finally wet, disgusting panties. Lying naked there, she had to have had piss herself no less than six times. Urea was quite the distinctive smell.

 

“Really let yourself go Erika.” One foot to her chest sent her tumbling over. Mounting her before she could process any thought. The blade went to work. Slicing cut after niche cut across her body. Numerous cuts to the face. To the neck, but taking such a careful diligence in avoiding the arteries. Chest, a-cup breasts, arms, hands, palms, pits, stomach, abdominal, legs, thighs, calves, shins, feet, soles. Such small cuts allowed space for so many. Pinhead would be pleased.

 

Erika once again soiled herself. C’mon Erika, try to hold some dignity. You went off in a direction she couldn’t see but returned with something in your hand. Something white. It was a bag of one of the most common molecules on earth, Salt.

 

You poured the entire contents over her in uneven amount. The screams were loud. Luckily, there was no glass in the room. Not even ear piercing shrills could invoke any emotion.

WHELP! Who wants take out?

 

An hour or… two later, you came back to check up on the little munchkin. She was the cutest shade of death. That singular eye was bloodshot and I don’t mean red. I mean she’s the likes of having been strangled for the past hour. Writhing under the sting of millions of little bees. A local hose washed most salt away.

 

“Yo… You’re a…monster.”

 

“No Erika… I’m a Father.”

 

Back in the real world, Elizabeth sat meekly at the table. Finally rejoining her spot for breakfast.

She looked better. No ruined makeup or cocaine nosed, still in her pajamas from the night before. There was a timid streak in her nature. Barely touching her strawberry oatmeal.

 

“Liz?” She jolted slightly at your words. Still not in a good place it seemed. “You ok?” She nodded, taking another spoonful of food. You slipped your hand into her hap to take a few of her fingers through your own.

 

“I’m… fine.”

 

“You can always talk to me Liz.”

 

“… Yeah.” She rose. Taking her bowl to the sink. You rose to follow.

 

“I’m always here for you Liz.”

 

“I know, just give me some time… ok?”

 

“Ok.”

 

Day Eight,

 

Day eight came in with a breeze, a hot breakfast, and a comforting back pop. The birds were chirping and a half dead cyclop girl’s screams were muffled by a foot of concrete. Today was going to be a good day. Hildegarde was in a bar stool at the island nibbling at macaroni and cheese with chicken nuggets, picking and nibbling at the food, seldomly taking large bits. Karen had all the money in the world for anything. Had a live in Maid that would make the child a $700 Kobe steak on a whim. Here she eating chicken nuggets.

 

Karen was out of the office for once. Sitting every so lasciviously with those golden eyes on you, she never was so sexy writing signatures on papers with just a pen in her hand. Janet brought you a fresh cup of colombian brew. Such a hearty earthy smell. You crossed over to Karen. Placing your fingers on her hand. She stopped writing. Gazing up to you, casting a lovely smile to your presence. You – being the cheeky little shit you are – slid your fingers along such soft skin. Her tender fingers leading to silky arms, up the subtle curve of her shoulder, and dragging your hand across her face.

 

“Hahahah, stoooooooooooooooop!” Her endearing smile stretched from her face to yours. You kept up the little attack. Mushing your hand across her face. Laughing in protest. Trying to pull your hand away from her face. Such a cute little nuclear family. Pulling your arm across her shoulder to find you more eye to eye and with a whisper: “How much longer you gonna keep her?”

 

“We got her phone, her contacts, times and schedules. We never really needed to keep her this long.”

 

“You’re sick.”

 

“No… I’m dad.” Oh my, how she wanted to be so angry at that statement. Struggling to stifle the anger at the first dad joke you’ve brought into this household. Not from anything that was actually funny. Desiring to be angered from making a joke out of someone’s torture, but at the last second, blindsided by an unforeseen dad-joke. It has truly come to pass, you have become your father. In all your glory, you had played your card when it was just the right moment. It’s almost been ten years since you two met, she thought

 

“Ok, I know you Jinko like playing with your food, but stop torturing her. End it.” Glancing over to Hildegarde whom was still painfully focused on little nuggets.

 

“Then they shouldn’t mess with my family.”

 

“You need to take this life more seriously.” Karen looked over to the wee crotch-fruit. Letting you go to approach her. “Hey pumpkin, why don’t you take your food and go play in your room? Can eat and watch a movie? Hows that? Janet, could you put a movie on for Hilde please?” Karen put a few kisses across Hilde’s head.

 

“Ok mommy.” Hildegard was a tad hushed but hopped out the chair, reaching up to take the plate from Karen then sauntered off to her room. The Kiki off in the corner smiled with a nod and came to retrieve the pup. Janet took the plate and shuffled after her. “You keep fucking around and you’re going to get hurt. You’ve been so fucking lucky, how many lives do you think you have left?”

 

“I’d say about eight?”

 

“This is not a fucking game Anon.”

 

“Well it’s most certainly been fun at least.”

 

“End it!”

 

Karen was once again at your side in the rage cage. You overlooking Erika with a pair of jumper cables in your hand.

 

“Good afternoon Sunshine. Or is it morning? Or maybe midnight? Hell I don’t know, and I know you don’t know either. You wanna play?”

 

Sob, sob, sob, and a tearful shake of the head.

 

“Thats a shame I guess. Oh well.” You pulled up a chair and a car battery. Wonder where these were going. “Ya know Erika… Karen and I like to get a little kinky sometimes in bed. We call this the Nipple clamp.” One clamp to one terminal and one clamp to the other. This wouldn’t be such a bad torture… in respect to what you’ve already put her through. She spazzed under the voltage. Not to the likes of a taser, but it certainly looked painful. Took a seat right before her. Both of you having a front row seat to the the other’s soul.

 

“At the very least one of us is enjoying this.”

 

“Anon.” Karen was withheld in fear. So were any girls there. It was a tossup who they wanted to deal with. Karen saw a level of brutality brought about by the icon of power that was her underboss. You took one of the clamps off a nip to give her a moment’s respite before immediately putting it back on. “Anon… stop. She’s had enough.”

 

“No… She touched my baby.”

 

“P-wease….st-aaawp.”

 

“Anon, even I agree she needed to suffer for it, but this – this is too much.” Karen reached out to you. She kept her distance however, fearful of what this new side of you she saw.

 

“No no no no. I will not stop this. I will not stop torturing you. I will keep you at the edge of life and death until Hell is a better alternative.” You jumped up from your chair, knocking Erika over and pulling off the cables. “I could have forgiven you Erika, if you just left Hilde alone. If it was me, ya’know I woulda just dropped it. Casualty of the situation. I get that… but you went after my little girl. You did the UN-FUCKING-THINKABLE. You touched my little girl, my little pride and joy. For that I could never forgive you. I hope I get sent to hell when I die. So I can torture you again… and again… and again.” During your little speech, Karen motioned one of the girls to gather up the cables and battery. It didn’t slip by unnoticed. “I’m not done with – Hey! Give that back!” You made scramble for the battery. Having to try and wrestle it from a Yak didn’t lend to your favor.

 

POM

 

POM

 

Horror.

 

You turned slowly to see Karen standing over Erika with a gun in her hands. Karen had taken Erika’s life from you

 

“WHAT

 

THE

 

FUCK

KAREN?!”

 

Karen turned to you with a cold glance. Letting go of the gun like a nasty wet napkin before coming to you and wrapping those leathery scaled arms under yours. Gripping you tightly.

 

“I wish you never found out about this life. I’m sorry. I put a curse on you. Don’t become like us,   Anon.” There was a treat hanging in front of you. So sweet and succulent. Dangling so vulnerable. Enjoying every moment, savoring it, taking just the smallest bites to make it last as long as possible. Stolen away. Karen did her best to draw attention back onto herself. Neck rubs, kisses, crotch modulating. Karen had to push you out the room. The girls would take care of the corpse.

 

Karen pushed you as best she could to the sofa. Pulling you down on top her once more.

 

All you could hear was mumbling, Karen mumbling something, clearly talking to you, but it was just a dull emptiness. In one ear and out the other. Strangely, it wasn’t a depression or catatonia, more like a wandering stupor. Full consciousness and feeling but a lack of response to external stimuli. Sleep seemed nice.

 

You stirred awake some time later. The sun was still out so it couldn’t have been that long. Karen was still petting you with eyes fixated on the T.V. She had noticed you wake up and greeted you with sweet little forehead kisses. The stupor was gone. Clarity had come back after a nice little cat nap.

 

“Feeling better Tiger?”

 

“Yeah.” She seemed off. Distant, lovingly distant. Here but detached.

 

“I’m glad. Not angry anymore?”

 

“No, I am. Just feels… bearable now. Feels like weight was taken off me. Like taking off your clothes at the end of a day.”

 

“I’d be lying if I said we haven’t done similar things. Not to the extreme you did, but murder, torture, we’ve done it all the same. Usually it’s only like a one time thing but I know how you felt. Just, try not to be like that. I don’t want to see you turn into that kinda monster. This kinda’ life corrupts people.”

 

You thought for a moment before nuzzling into her chest. “I won’t, I have a big strong dragon to protect me.” Her placid frown turned slightly upward. Every girl’s desire to feel wanted, to be a protector for her man, you just plopped it right in her lap.

 

“I’ll always keep you safe love.”

 

The next day was how it’s been every day. Breakfast, morning sex, trying to console Hildegarde.

 

“Mr. Anon, Karen wants to see you. Office.”

 

Alright?

 

Karen was at her desk as you found her so many times before. Nursing a small drink. GOod for her, able to enjoy ambrosia in a responsible amount. Good for you young blood.

 

“You wanted me boss?” She chuckled.

 

“Sit.” She motioned to a chair right in front of your desk. “I just wanted to talk to you. I wanted to discuss your… agenda… I guess.”

 

“What?”

 

“Your rampage.”

 

“Mmmm. Sooooo what did you want to know.”

 

“What do you need to finish your rampage?”

 

“Wait, you’re finally gonna help me?”

 

“I don’t want to, but you really haven’t given me any choice have you?” True. “At least I can help speed things up. Get you done with your little rampage and get you off the streets.”

 

“Thank you K.”

 

“Don’t thank me. You put down the kindling for a war. Now you’re about to ignite it. Your actions haven’t gone unpunished. You’ve been stalking Lieutenants Anon. Not just hood-skanks or made-women. You’ve been ruining businesses. Cost powerful people lots of money. We’ve had businesses robbed and women killed in retaliation. You may have gotten out with just a few scratches, but your actions hurt a lot of people.”

 

“I’m sorry.”

 

“I’m not going to justify their deaths. It comes with the territory. Everyone knows what they get into when getting into this life. Still, These whores have been costing me a lot of money as well. Trying to tear my family apart and then sending some bitch right up under my nose. I’m helping you to take back my revenge they took on you and Hildegarde. I’m not going to be quiet about it any longer.”

 

NOW WE’RE TALKIN! Gonna get out the big gats.

 

“Soooooooooooo.”

 

“You tell me tiger, this is your deal.”

 

“Well, I figured since we have Erika’s phone that we could dig up some contacts and numbers. It’s not a work phone or anything right?”

 

“She had two, work and personal.”

 

“There we go. Cross check both phones and see what we can get.”

 

“Easy enough. I’ll try and get something off them.”

 

“Alright. Is that all you need of me?”

 

“For now. Gotta set up a whooooooooooooole lotta shit.” She took an exasperated sigh before reaching for a bottle of vodka. Stopped by the sensation of your hand on hers.

 

“Go easy on the stuff ok?” She’d smirked, putting it aside. “Also, I wanna grow out my claws.”

 

“Nooooooooooooo, they hurt!”

 

Knock, Knock, Knock.

 

Rasping at the door. Pretty little pink flowers never looked so blue.

 

“Hey sweet pea. You there?” No answer. The door moane. Inside was a black room filled only with the blue of a DVD at end reel. Hildegarde was curled up ontop her bed. Sleeping? Sobbing? Don’t know. “Hey Pookie.” You sat at the edge of the bed only able to offer some comforting headpats. “How’re you feeling?” No response, but that was anticipated. You climbed in her bed, taking the role of big spoon. Continuing sweet little pets. Coaxing whatever you can from the pup. Teasing her wittle nose, poking belly, able to at least manage to pry out a few giggles.. She squirmed much like any child would tickled. Otherwise no effect as she returned to neutral. You curled your arms around her entirely. “I’m so sorry sweetie. I’m sorry you had to hurt like that. Daddy will always keep you safe sweet-pea. I love you so much. How would you like to go spend a few days away from everything, go on a little vacation?” You felt a tiny nod. For that night, Hildegarde got to enjoy the silk of the Queen’s bed.

 

Riiiiiiiiing, Riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiing

 

“I got it! I got it!” Karen called out around the house, briskly sliding to the door with books toppling from her arms. She’d first check the peephole. “Oh god. JANET!” Karen dumped the books off on the Kikimora. Panicking in fixing her clothes, hair, eye lashes in a nearby mirror. Then the door. “Hiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii~ Mmmmmmoooooooooooom? Ermm… Mrs. Raegan. Wwwwwhat’re you doing here?”

 

Before her in the door was a woman, a tall woman. Taller than Karen and even you for that matter: a Jinko. She looked down at Karen with an annoyed scowl.

 

“Hello Karen. My son called me yesterday. He wanted to see if I could take Hildegarde for a few days.”

 

“Oh well. Please come in! No need to be a stranger.” Karen moved off to the side to allow momma-Jinko the berth the enter. She wasn’t big, but ever so deliciously T H I C C. Golden fur, black bands, thick muscle, a whole lotta woman.

 

“Hey mom.” You came out from the bedroom. Raegan’s dismay in Karen immediately changed in seeing you. You were her baby after all. “Thanks for coming.”

 

“Gwanmaw!” Hildegarde struggled to get out of your arms and into Mama Raegan’s. Mom set her own bag down to pick up the bolting child up into the air.

 

“My favoritest grandchild! Have you been a good girl?”

 

“Yesh mimi.”

 

“I’m happy to come over anytime Anon, you need to call me more, I-wait.” Mom, w-what’re you doing? Mom? MOM?! Raegan approached you with Hildegarde in her arms, she rose one horrifying thumb to her mouth. Tongue extended to give her finger pad a lick. MOM NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! Rubbing your cheek with it.

 

“Ok, Now lemmie get you some foodies in the tummy.” Raegan took Hildegarde into the kitchen. Playing with the Pup’s stomach, inciting some giggles.

 

“Uhhh excuse me, Anon, what the shit?”

 

“I figured Hildegarde could use a distraction and get away. Especially with the thiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiing coming and-”

 

“Kiiiiiiiids!” Out came a deep rumbling voice. A large barrel chested man, shorter than Momma Jinko but clearly larger. Two large arms enveloped you for a literal bear hug.

 

“Hey Dad.”  /  “Mr. Liam, uh-Dad.” The man was large enough to engulf both of you in a quaint hug. He was descended from grizzly genes, gifting to his size. While it was apparent he manscaped, it didn’t seem to deter any problems.

 

“Hey my boy. Hello Karen, you look beautiful as always.” He finished with a kiss to the cheek.

 

Karen beamed enjoying the relishing the compliment. “Thank you Dad.”

 

“Anon, your sister’s outside.” He then joined the kitchen crew.

 

“Oh my god, is your entire fucking family here?”

 

“I didn’t invite everyone! Just my mom! Dad goes without saying, but I didn’t invite Lily, Owen, or Quinn.”

 

“You say that and I bet your whole streak is going to come walking in any second!”

 

“Nah, They aren’t coming. Quinns in Florida on vacation and Owen’s still in graduate classes.” A second Jinko emerged behind, much smaller than momma Jinko. “Hey Anon. Hey Karen.”

 

“Hello Lily.” She too walked into the house.

 

“Anon, you couldn’t give me a weeks or even a day’s notice before we have your entire littler show up?”

 

“Karen, Karen, I understand your frustration. This was a last minute thing. I’m sorry. Look at the bright side, Hilde will be taken care of and you and I can get away just the two of us.” Karen offered annoyed reluctance through severely soured expression. “C’mon, my family loves you. Maaaaaaaaaybe not so much my mom, but Lily and my Dad certainly do.”

 

“Fine. It’ll keep Hilde safe.” You gave a reassuring forehead kiss to the flustered dragon before the both of you joined your family. Today was full of festivities. Mom and Dad always knew how to keep a smile on everyone’s faces. Mom even knew how to put a smile on your pup’s distraught face. Momma Raegan always knew best. After a while of fun, Karen had to be off to do more work. Had to keep the businesses running, had to plan an attack, get information, prepare all safe houses for war, prep the girls.

 

“You’ve raised a beautiful young woman Anon.” Hildegarde ate that up, while having her mouth shoved full of fried fish by Mom. “Who’s a big strong girl?”

 

“Me me me!” Raegan shoved more fish into an already full mouth.

 

“Thanks for coming Mom.”

 

“What? And I wouldn’t? You’re my son Anon, I’d travel across the country just to keep tuck you in at night.”

 

“Dyaddy does that for me! He crosses the house to tuck me in.”

 

“Daddys such a good daddy huh?”

 

“Yeah! Mommy’s ok!” That caused a raised brow on Raegan. “Oh, and what is Mom-”

 

“Nununununununu-Karen is a great Mommy.” Raegan flashed you a harsh glare.

 

“It’s ok sweetie, you can talk to Grammaw.”

 

“Dyaddy and mommy faught a lot.”

 

“About what?” Raegan had these ways. Motherly ways. Ways unknown to Karen until shes had another thirty more years and three more kids. Raegan was massaging a happy Hilde’s cheeks. So much warmth. The child whisperer.

 

“Mommy became a bad person for a little while. Made daddy angwy. They didn’t talk for while.” Mommy turned to look at you with the biggest scowl you’ve ever seen. “But mommy made daddy happy again and became good person again.” Even your father knew to stay out of this. You were his boy, but that was fury he wasn’t going to put himself between.

 

“Looks like Daddy and Mimi will have to have a talk tonight?” Here we go. “Sweetie, how about you go ahead and get some toys and clothes packed because you’re going to get to come stay at Mimi’s for a few days!” Oh god Hildegarde lit up like a sun. Bolting off to her room.

 

You looked to your father for protection. Much like many times ago as a child, he didn’t save you from Mommy’s wrath. Dad was the more lenient one after all, damn you grizzly genes. His eyes were a “Don’t look at me boy. I ain’t helping.”

 

“Anon, what’s Hildegarde talking about?”

 

“UHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH. Well. I mean.” Cough cough. “Im sure you you and Dad fight.”

“Don’t you bring me into this boy. I ain’t about to die.” Dad laughed, Lily, laughed, you laughed, and Mom killed both of you. He too shut up when stabbed with ocular eyes.

 

“Anon, tell me what she meant.”

 

“Karen… and I… had some problems some time ag-”

 

“What kinda problems.” There was no question mark for that statement. That was an order.

 

OOOOOH MOM PLEEEEEEEEEESE.

 

“Her and I just had a major fight.”

 

“Anon.”

 

WHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAT?

 

“Ok so uhhh… Karen has been… Shes was cheating on me for the past year.” Raegan’s face lit up in nuclear rage.

 

“I knew she was a terrible person. I warned you when I first met her that I didn’t have a good feeling. Never fucking like that little whore,  told you hundreds of time-”

 

“Mom please.” Lily and Liam were off to the side sewing their mouths shut.

 

“I fucking hated that little skank since I met her. I knew she was bad for you, Why couldn’t you have just stayed with that other Jinko, what was her name?”

 

“Amy.” Lily chimed in.

 

“Sarah was such a sweet down-to-earth Jinko and you left her.”

 

“Mom please, we worked our way through it.”

 

“She cheated on you Anon. You’re just going to let it go?” Tigers are, after all, the most vengeful animals on the planet and momma’s little cub had been crossed.

 

“Yeah Mom, Anon’s always been a gold digger.” She always rubbed that phrase in.

 

“I… no, but we worked through it. Trust me, I hurt her just as much as you can. Please just drop it.”  Momma cat settled down, pulled back down to earth by the heartstrings of her children. “Lets just eat and have fun ok?”

 

“Mom, I’m sure Anon has done everything in his power to make sure he and Hilde are safe and knowing our family made his own retributions. Right Anon?” Thanks Lily.

 

Your father placed a big leathery hand on your shoulder. “Boy, are you happy?”

 

“Yeah. I am.”

 

“Then thats all we need Raegan. Our boy is happy, let’s leave it at that.”

 

“My brothers happy, then so I am.” Raegan was the only one to look defeated. Her babies were her world. So much as a thorn in any of their paws would meet with world shattering devastation. Devastated in being forced to swallow her pride. Her husband and children weren’t even on her side! For shame! Raegan would accept defeat.

 

“Mimi! Am ready to go!” Hildegarde returned to the kitchen with a small suitcase dragging along the floor; half full of clothes and half full of toys. The poor child.

 

“Alright, Alright. I still don’t like her though.”

 

“Shes my wife, not yours, just play nice mom.” Raegan gave you a smile, pulled you in and gave kiss to your head. She was taller after all.

 

“Ok Hilde, let’s actually put you some clothes together. UuuuuuuuuUUUUUUPPPPP ya go.” Raegan lifted your daughter into her arms and took her off to her room.

 

Dad had a sly smile to him. “Avoided a nuclear blast.”

 

Lily brought a fork of food to her mouth. “Ya, rememebuh whe Mommah clawed the shii outta ‘at boy I da-ed in *coughcough* in high school? I think momma woulda actually done something to Karen. Shes so vindictive.”

 

Dad chimed in. “If I knew about how you tigers were. I swear to god you kids woulda been different.” He came out with a laughter.

 

“What other option were there dad?”

 

“There was a cute little mouse I dated before your mother.”

 

“Oh my god I don’t want to of myself as a four foot little mouse with, ughhhhh.” Lily shivered. That would’ve been been a terrible thought as well. Could you imagine being four foot ten? Little buck teeth, maybe you would’ve ended up with Minnie instead of Karen

 

“Anon, I don’t care what you and Karen go though, thats not my position. A father’s role is just to make sure his kids are safe, happy, and healthy. What you do in your life is your business… and now that your mother ain’t here. Are you really happy?”

 

“Not if you asked me a while back, but we’ve recovered. We’re good now.” Your father looked upon you in sternness. “Dad, I promise. I do love Karen.”

 

“Karen can be a sweet girl. Everyone has faults. I’m proud of you.”

 

“For what?”

“Your ability to forgive her. Strength to move on.” Lily knocked her hip to Dad’s.

 

“Thats sweet of you dad.” Lily joined in. Lily went ahead and got another beer for dad. Dad had a special smile that revealed in the warmth of his children.

 

“C’mon son, show me your lawn”

 

What’s it with Dads’ and yards? You took your father out to the back veranda where he immediately took notice of an outside wet-bar poolside. The three of you took to long pool chairs along the length of the glistening pool lights with dad slinging back more alcohol.

 

“You have a nice yard kid.” Lily had found a tub of ice-cream to dig into.

 

“Thanks dad.”

 

“You can tell a whole lot about a man by the way he takes care of his yard.” Wut? “Shows discipline, the careful diligence of weeding out a yard, killing the pests…” Heh, killing pests. “Shows hard work. Dedication. Motivation to keep something beautiful. That you want to maintain and take care of the things you care about. You didn’t let something get in the way, even though it was a serious matter… you chose to try and look past it. I’m really proud of you son. You know, Your mother and I almost got a divorce.”

 

“Wut?” Lily froze at the thought, already teary eyed. Dad pulled her in and comforted with head pats. Lily was always a big ol’ lap-cat after all.

 

“Yep, we used to fight a lot, but you kids already knew that, and I’m sorry you all had to hear it, but we worked through our problems, weeded our garden and now it’s healthier and stronger than ever. We still fight, but it’s nothing we can’t get over. It’s been something we both worked hard at. You and Karen raised a beautiful rose son in your garden, and even though a few weeds sprouted up in your relationship. You ripped them out and moved on.”

 

“That was pretty dad.” Lily muttered between spoonfuls.

 

“You didn’t do a damn thing did you Anon?”

 

“Karen hires people to take care of the yard. I don’t really have the mental fortitude to take care of seven acres Dad.” Dad had a good chuckle and pushed off your shoulder. “Still a good analogy. Should try it son. Gets you out the house and away from a nagging wife.” Lily punched dad, giving him something new to laugh at as he pulled her into a headlock and ground knuckles into her skull. Struggle as she might, can’t get out of a patented Dad-lock.

 

“What would we have been if you didn’t meet mom?”

 

“You remember that lil mouse-girl I told you about earlier. God, she was a fiery little thing.”

 

“Ugggggh, I don’t want that image in my head.” Lily shivered at the mere thought of having been born mouse. Grabbing her own whilst still in the Dad-lock.

 

“Aside from the problem you really did find a good woman Anon.”

 

“She did put me through Cornell.”

 

“I’m glad she found you.”

 

“I’d go lez for a nice sugar momma.” Lily had stopped struggling by this point as Dad’s knuckles became sweet little pets.

 

“You were always the white tiger of the family.” You pointed out her severely open minded nature.

 

“Hey, I don’t mind being called a butch muff-eating lesbian if my wife’s making 10 million a year.” More than that Lily. “Their insults gonna make me cry, but them tears gonna fall on my bugatti leather seats!”

 

Dad was enjoying his drinks out on the veranda, slinging back drinks thanks to grizzly fortitude while remaining able to actually stay awake. Keeping the family entertained with outdoor TV and many stories of childhood and the things dad didn’t know about. Lily too had some interesting slices of life as well as some of Karen’s girls who joined in on the fun. They were able to pass themselves off as Karen’s employees, whether groundskeepers or ‘business associates’ or whatnot. You had been married to Karen for a few years already so this wasn’t the first time your parents had been over so not the first time Karen’s girl’s had to act through a wet paper bag. They were at least good enough to sell the lie. Eventually dad wandered inside to find a bed and thus leaving only you, Lily, and a half-empty carton of ice-cream. The both of you ended up beside the pool. Lily dangled her feet in the pool, moving little circles. You beside her laying off the end of a pool chair. Propping out a quip in between each mouthful of ice-cream.

 

“Really lucked out Anon. Beautiful wife, beautiful kid, house, won’t have to work a day in your life.”

 

“I guess so. I don’t know if it’s been worth it.”

 

“I dunno Anon. Yeah she’s cheated on you, but you’ve also never really had to work a day in your life and you will probably never have to, be lucky to be a house-husband. Silver Lining.”

 

Silver Lining.

 

“Doubt I’ll ever reach that kinda success. Paper doesn’t pay that well.” Newpaper Editor she was referring to. Hoping to reach the likes of Anchor woman someday.

 

“Dunno, Danielle Lemon makes like three mill a year.” Lily chuckled. She was at the tipping point of cream overload. Finally putting the spoon down and running her claws throw your hair. It was an affectionate family. She was always affectionate. As kids, especially the ever social Jinko, found yourself all sleeping together often. Lily took it a step further being “Mom, when playing “house”.

 

“Not right meow Jonafan, I make deal  fur murger. I go home to husband now an’ he have meal cooked.” That was more than twenty-years ago. “ANAN! Husband! Where dinnur?”

 

“I don’t wan’ play gaem Wiwy!”

 

“Hol still, you have dirt spot!” You brought a hand  to rub the portion of face Lily licked long ago.

“MAAAAAAAAAM, Wiwy wicking me again! Staaaaaaaaaaaaahp!”

 

“Lily, stop licking your brother.”

 

“It’d be nice to get to that point. Got lots of competition.”

 

“You’re a young beautiful Jinko, I’m sure you’ll get lead anchorwoman.” She’d smirk to the thought.

 

“That’d be great. I need to find a strapping young rich playboy to hook up with.”

 

“You live in the clouds. I got lucky Lily. If I wasn’t playing at that bar that night I wouldn’t have met Karen to begin with, you were even there.”

 

“I remember that, she was eating you with her eyes. Everyone was there to support you. I remember Owen was the only one that wasn’t too happy. Mom was even drinking, Quinn was losing her shit.”

 

“He’s just not the party type. You didn’t do much either.”

 

“I had work in the morning, I couldn’t get wrecked.”

 

“Who the fuck works weekends?”

 

“Normal people who work lots of overtime. I suppose you wouldn’t know anything about that.” She grabbed a full handful of hair to give a playful tug. “I miss this.”

 

“Hmm?”

 

“I miss the family. We used to be six people in a house and now I’m all by myself in a loft in Chelsea.”

 

“Sounds like you just want to find a guy to make a big family.”

 

“I’d like that. I miss the noise. I miss being around family. Staying up with Quinn and just talking. Like this. Us. I miss being the four of us playing all the time.” Lily put a little more effort into massaging your scalp. “But I want something like you got.”

 

“You want a guy to cheat on you?”

 

“I want a guy who loves me. Will always be there for me. Will comfort me through the hard times………… ride me to-”

 

“Alright got it.”

 

“Like how Karen treated you. Like that time she took the entire family to that Italian dinner. Really impressed Mom. Karen was fawning all over you.”

 

“Maybe why Mom didn’t like her. Karen tried to hard to impress all of you. Gave off the wrong vibe of trying to impress too hard. Mom smelled it like she was trying to hide something.”

 

“Moms very protective of her kittens.”

 

“Like that time that little girl pushed you off a slide at the playground and almost broke your arm. Mom really her that girl’s parents alive.”

 

“Moms always been hyper-defensive.” You were one to talk. Mom only chewed that woman out. You were murdering people. “You’d be a good mother, just like mom.”

 

“What makes you say that?”

“You’re very protective of me. You’ve even treated me like your kid in the past.”

 

“I know, I just wanted to hear you say it~ Heheheheh~” You gave her a shove, panicked cat noises and spazzing saved from from the water of the pool, but not the remains of her icecream.

 

“Anoooooooon.”

 

“Protect that.” Lily took that to heart, a very angered heart. Immediately becoming a scramble for the best position. It was a wrestling match of minimal proportions. Lily gritted her teeth in excitement to be wrestling you again. Always the family pin-cushion. Lily was a tough nut to get ahold of, the only advantage you had was to grab at her fur. The both of you rolled out of the chair and around on the ground for awhile before Lily got the upper hand. Planting your arms above your head and slamming her weight down onto your pelvis, checkmate. And no, you couldn’t feel anything between your clothing and her thick jean shorts. She held a devious smile at you. Cackling mad as she brought her face closer and closer to yours. Closer, closer closer, Cackling wildly and…lick.

 

“Ahh! Eck! Ahhhhhh! Euuuughghghh! Lily! ECCHHHHH!”

 

“Thats what’cha get nerd.” She then began with the purring and the head bumping. Yeah, yeah, try to win me over. Ok, it is good.

 

“A guy to play with me like this.” Lily lowered her head to rest on your chest. “Miss the love.” You brought Lily in for a hug, give her what she missed, even giving her a big lick across the scalp. Breaking her out in a fit of giggles.

 

“Anon staaaawp!”  She rose a paw to bat you away.

 

“You’ll find the perfect woman, fuckface.”

 

“Eat shit, bitchboy.”

 

The next morning was not one awakened by birds, but by sweet laughter. Coming out into the living room held no waking peoples. It was the yard that had everything. Mom, Dad, Lily, Hildegarde. A sweet smell in the air gave way that Janet was cranking out something. Everyone was here, even Elizabeth was in a bikini in a chair whom was the first to notice you came. She looked at you in solemn want, but only offered a weak smile. Genuine nonetheless.

 

“Dyaddy! Come play!”

 

“In ya go.” Before you even had the chance to respond. Karen had given you a shove into the pool, jammies and all. Karen brough some thrusts of her wings down to lift herself more than twenty feet into the air to crash down into the pool. Whether it was a mask to hide any family dissent or actual fun, it was still a good day.

 

Karen tried her best to win over Mama Raegan. Making some progress through her day drinking in between Mom and Dad flirting. Oh god the fur is gonna destroy the filtration.

 

The family stayed the rest of the day, but not for another night. Prepping up to leave late-afternoon. Lily came in her own car and thusly left before everyone else, but not without a kiss to the cheek, a noogie and stealing a lot of beef jerky from the pantry. Dad and Karen were strapping Hildegarde into a carseat which left you and Mom in the kitchen alone.

 

“Thanks for coming Mom.” She had a rough smile, a characteristic one that seemed ever so out of place.

 

“Don’t thank me Anon, any of my children call me and I’ll come running. I’d go to the ends of the earth for all of you, even Quinn down in florida with her family. and I’m always happy to see my grandchild.” She radiated such motherly warmth.

 

“I’ll be sure to call you more.”

 

“You should. Why don’t you Anon?”

 

“You’ll kill Karen.”

 

“Seriously.”

 

“I’ve just been busy, Mom.”

 

“How busy could a house husband be?”

 

“Well…” She just looked you over inquisitively.

 

“Raising a daughter can be exhausting but you’ve only had one child Anon and Karen does all the work. You stay at home and do nothing. One child can’t be exhausting you that much that you need to get away with Karen, it’s not like she doesn’t have millions she couldn’t spend to bribe Harvard to make a daycare for her. Whats got my little cub worried?” Mom used a single claw to begin parting and styling your hair.

 

“Its… a lot Mom and I don’t wanna bother you with it.” Mom perked up at that. Damn your choice in words. “It’s nothing I can’t handle.” Dammit. Strangely, Mom kind’ve calmed down. She held an uncharacteristic frown.

 

“Alright.”

 

What?

 

“What?”

 

“No, Anon, I trust you. I trust that you are doing what you believe is right.”

 

“Wha-Why?”

 

“Hildegarde told me what happened that night.” Oh god. “I’m sorry that you had to go through that.” Oh god, the worst thing a mother could learn. A son was a mother’s pride and joy. The prince that could do no wrong and she had to listen to how you were beaten and bruised. She failed as a mother to protect her most cherished. Mom was struggling to maintain a smile and hold back tears. She patted you, held you, caressed and stroked you. Anything to try and appease some kind of instinctive affection. “I’m sorry.”

 

“Mom it’s…”

 

“I’m sorry… I couldn’t protect my baby boy.” A doting parent even after a decade of empty nest syndrome. Mom leaned over the counter, staring into her cup of coffee. Mom seemed to be taking this much harder than you were, then again you already had your chance to go through the emotions. A child like Hildegarde would take some time. Still reeling, at least internally, from that night. No child could be prepared for that.

 

“I’ll be fine mom, we’ll be fine.”

 

“I know how to make em’ strong.” She chuckled through some sniffles. Attacking someone’s children was a stab in the heart. You knew exactly how Mom felt, she knew exactly how you felt. “I want to be angry at you for being so passive about it but I can tell you already went through your pain. Dealt with it well. I do make strong kids.” Wouldn’t you like to know Mom.

 

“Well… I was raped, sooooo I did get to cheat on Karen.” Mom Held a complacent glare at you, but unable to maintain, She broke into a fit of giggles. Tears of sadness turned into tears of laughter. You’d know some dark humor would put a smile on mom’s face. Any jab at Karen would make Mom happy. It broke the feeling of dread. Able to turn a horrific situation into a laughable one. Raegan brought her voice down.

 

“Did you like it?”

 

“Ehhhhhhhhhh, It was ‘different’ from Karen.” That brought a few more giggles.

 

“Thanks for being so strong Anon. Stronger than me. If it were me in your shoes, I’d hunt down and murder all those who did this to you.” You have no idea Mom. “I’d still be torn up about it but you just… you’re just standing strong, where’d you get them Ox genes?“

 

“I did want to murder them, I would’ve if I ever got my hands on them, I remember all their faces. I know exactly what I would do to them too. I was affected by it Mom, you just missed the fire.”

 

“I suppose. It had been some time since then huh? I’m just happy you’re safe.” Her smile turned wide. “What’d you do? How’d you handle it?”

 

“Uhhh. I took my anger out on my surroundings mostly. I mainly just sat at home and crunched out some bones with Elizabeth, I… went out and crushed a few bars, fought Karen abit, experimented with some ropes, partied hard enough that some people fell out a window.”

 

“Exciting.”

 

“I’ve been dealing with it. I’m doing my best, I’m doing fine.”

 

“I know. Thats why I’m not… panicking about as I usually do. I trust you to do the right thing. I raised you right. We raised you to be the perfect husband and the best father we could. You make me proud to put your family first. You’re doing better than me. I know I fly off the handle so much, but you and your brothers and sisters are so level headed. I guess your father really balanced me out. I guess that’s where I failed as a parent.”

 

“Noooo you were fantastic. Are.”

 

“I could’ve done better, everyone could always do better. I could’ve been a little more lenient. A little less protective.”

 

“We did well enough the was it was.”

 

“Are you happy Anon?”

 

There was a slight hesitation. Digging through thoughts to come up with a proper answer.

 

“Very.”

 

“Uggggggh, you kids kill me you know that.” Raegan wiped at her face. No makeup steaks, she didn’t have the need for it. “I’m so happy that you found your way in life. You spoil Hildegarde.”

 

“Hehe, I don’t try.”

 

“Heheheh, Just be careful what you do. Make sure you put your family first, Karen’s been doing the same.”

 

“Karen rubbing off on you?”

 

“Fuck no. Your wife, your life. I never liked her, but as long as you are happy I will stand by whatever decision you make. Just make sure they’re ones you want. Make sure you can live with them. Make sure they’re what you want. Make sure you don’t regret anything sweetheart.”

 

“Thanks Mom.” You leaned over the counter with her, giving her a much beloved head bump. She ate that up. Immediately purring and returning the bump.

 

“Hey hey.” Dad finally joined in. “Baby’s all tucked in, nappin’ in the car.”

 

“Thanks for taking Hilde on such short notice.”

 

“We’ll spoil her. Make her so happy. Alright, we’ll get going, give you two some private time.” The fun was over. Parents were heading out. Got a lot done for today. Still one thing left to do.

 

Furious feet.

 

Torrenting hands.

 

A little sheep going to work on a punching bag. Throwing her anger into leather. She was dancing up, down, and all around that bag. Until she turned to the other side and saw you. She stopped. Staring at you through sweat stung eyes. Another situation of intense silence. Staring at each, eyes worth a thousand words.

 

“So… feeling better?” Not the right way to start off this conversation champ.

 

Elizabeth rolled her wrist across forehead. Muttering out some words between labored breaths. “Yeah.” Then back to nothing. A silence that neither of you knew how to break. Everything seemed so much easier in the movies. “I guess…” She broke first. “I went off the deep end.”

 

“No, I’d say it would’ve been a………  a good – I mean, proper emotion at the time… I guess.”

 

“I relapsed. Anon, I’m sorry.”

 

“Don’t apologize. I can eeeeeeeeeeeehhhhhhhhnderstand how you felt.” Then more awkward silence.

 

“I’m happy you’re back.” That gave her a smile.

 

“Me too.”

 

“You’re not gonna leave us again huh?”

 

“No, I’m not going anywhere.”

 

“So what’re we gonna do about…. ‘It’.”

 

“I don’t know. I mean, I…” Sighing between words. “I don’t know Anon, I love you.”

 

“And I love you.”

 

“Yeah… but not the way I want.” Nothing really to say to that. “I’m not going to ask anything out of you. It’s not my place, never was. I don’t think I can stop loving you, but I can pull it back, love you at arms length.”

 

“Don’t friendzone yourself. Don’t hold yourself out for me if someone comes along.”

 

“Theres no other place I’d rather be.” She played with her own fingers while a blush overcame her face. “So… get back into it? Up to get back into the swing of things? Up to fight?”

 

You made a move to grab a pair of gloves, your mouth piece, and shinguards. Elizabeth was hard to keep up with. Everything you learned of fighting you learned from her. She knew everything you did and more. Your jab was met with a quick slip, she jab was met with your parry, your kick was met with a stern block, her backhand meeting with your shoulder block. I mean, I could go into the actual terms for these, but I doubt anyone would know what a wing block is. She came across with a hard combo that kept you on your toes, but nothing you didn’t readily handle. She was quick. She was Nimble, every time you tried something clean and fresh, she was ready to tweak the difficulty. Every successful hit you landed on her, even if it was managed into a block, they only made the next ones harder and harder.

 

Had to admit there was a sexual tension in all of this. Something along the lines of “coming to terms with reality”. Notably in the ferocity in her steps. This wasn’t like a sparring match you’d had many times before.

 

Elizabeth was able to dance circles around you. So much so, you were kept purely on the defensive. Unable to even mount any form of offence. She pushed you into the corner, uppercutting away into your arms that covered your ribs. Call this something of a release for her.

 

You had to get out of this position, you had to give some kinda offense. These free hits were devastating. Any hit was a bad hit and here you were taking three a second. Had to get out, do anything to get out. You thrust off the wall into her, stuffing her punches and rocking out two yourself, connecting with her chin and shoulder. It caught her off guard enough she had to take a setback, but it took you with her. She grabbed at your arm as you both went tumbling down to the ground. Elizabeth taught you some groundwork, but nothing enough to rely on. More enough to be able to “survive” when things went to the floor. Elizabeth always wanted you to be on your feet at all times. The both of you tumbled across the ground in struggle for the best position. It ended with her on top of you. Face only inches away. Both of you gasping to steal away more oxygen.

 

Your breaths washed over each other in warm waves.

 

Faces only an inch apart with eyes so wanting.

 

“Anon? Anon?!”

 

“OUHIUYSZBGIYBSD I DIDN’T DO IT!”

 

Some voice called out to you. Throwing you into a fit on the couch that startled you awake. Your eyes darted around to see whom it was that woke you up. Karen was peeking out from the corner that lead from her office.

 

“Anon, can I see you in my office?” You got up from the couch, walking past a few girls who were passed out, still hungover from the little house party last night. Karen already disappeared behind the corner and into her office. She was standing against her desk looking out the wall sized window across the city-scape. A much more somber and relaxed approach than the many times you’ve come.

 

“Hey.”

 

“Hey. Whats up?”

 

“Got some names, some numbers.”

 

“Good, making progress.”

 

“Yeah, I’ve got some names, but I had an idea. Do you remember what species they were?”

 

“… Yeah.”

 

“Alright, well. I pulled names from Erika’s phone and can pinpoint them to some races. We can start cross referencing them and maybe get something. She did have to report to somebody over her. Some higher boss wouldn’t be put in that position. I hate to ask you think, but I need you to go back to that moment and try to remember who was there.”

 

“Ok uhhhmmm. There was a mouse, a mantis, both of those I got, uhhhh, a Minotaur, an Ushi-Oni, an Oni. No, two… annnnnnnnnnnnd I think thats all. There were only six. Oh! I ran over one of the Oni’s in the Hummer that was wrecked.”

 

“Makes it easier.”

 

“Ok, lets go run some names. Follow me.” Karen took your by the hands and led you out the room. Elizabeth was all primped and proper in  the living room ready to head back into active duty. Back into the familiar black suit.

 

“Ready Liz?”

 

“Yes ma’am.”

 

“Good, we’re going down downtown.”

 

“Where exactly are we going?”

 

“Going to meet some techies that do a lot of my information handling.” Karen pet your hand as her fingers threaded through them.

 

“Which means?”

 

“We have some geeks that take care of everything we need, keep eyes on people, monitor bank accounts, bookkeeping, generally if we can do it with a computer we have people for it.” Elizabeth chimed in from the front.

 

“More-or-less. Regardless, we have information on a lot of the Marcotti family anyway.”

 

“If we have a lot on them, wouldn’t they have a lot on us?”

 

“Of course, in this game you need every advantage to stay on top. You don’t make millions to sit on top of it and do nothing, that’s how you get killed. Staying with the times isn’t enough, gotta be ahead.” Liz continued

 

“So they know everything about me? Us? The family?”

 

“Maybe, depends on how illegal you wanna go. Got money to play with and it goes a long way. Pay enough and you can get your hands on anything.”

 

“Here we are.” Karen pointed out, motioning to a building you all had pulled up to. It was an apartment building. AN APARTMENT BUILDING?!

 

“Ugggghhh, K, the fuck are we doing in Chelsea?”

 

“This where our nerds at.”

 

“AHHHHHHHHHHH! I can’t get past this fucking encryption! Goddammit!”

 

“Jesh’ush, calm za fuck down, you need to lay off thyat seestum, you’ve been in it for a monf they’re gonna find you. Oh! Dat mussh be tha pitza gai. Oh gawd! Meez. Kawen.”

 

“Still haven’t fixed that lips, Fiona.” Karen barged in without even wiping her feet off on the mat.Liz entered after her and you next with one more girl behind you. This woman, an owl from the looks of it, reached up to dig something out of her mouth.

 

“Yeah, Sorry, Ms Karen.” A retainer. You made eye contact with the girl and she was everything explicit with the connotation of nerd. You could smell the freshly printed D&D sheets off of her, 3.5, classic. “M-Mr. Anon!” There was a slight blush flushing her cheeks. “Can-Can I get you anything? A drink? A soda? Pizza?”

 

“No, but thank you anyway.” You flashed her a quaint little smile.

 

“I’ll take one.” Liz grasped at the offer.

 

“Two.” Then Karen. The petite owl looked a tad miffed, others grabbing at offers that weren’t given. Still, don’t piss off your boss, she went to the kitchen and fridge to get two drinks to pass off to Liz and Karen. She turned to a large set of multi-linked monitors and took a seat behind some littered cheeto bags. “Alright! Well, we’ve got the names and have gotten a list of who they look like.”

 

Karen motioned to you, to move behind the monitors and take a gander. Which you followed, stepping over racks of hard drives, cables, and unclean food. The room was filled full with all sorts of technogizmomatry. Anything beyond the basics of a computer looked more alien in process. Hard drives, ram, cpu, ram, uhhh… ram. Something took your eyes enough to warrant you taking it up.

 

“Whats this?”

 

“Ah! New V.R. headset. Got an early release through some contacts in exchange for some insider info?”

 

“Yeah? What did you trade for it?” You puzzled before trying to put on the goggles.

 

“Just some corporate trade information to competitors. I must say…” getting a little swell of pride going over her expertise. Whoops, thats point-of-view of a guy getting pegged, let’s never put these on again. “…the security was tough, but mmmmmmmnothing I couldn’t handle.” So proud she drew circles on her desk with a finger.

 

“Get on with it Fiona.” Karen wasn’t needed and thusly just meandered around the apartment, one arm crossed her stomach and the other folded under her chin, in obvious disgust. Getting the glance of Karen also brought another girl into view, this one was at another set of rigs and a turtle by the looks of it. She held a deep blush against her greenish skin, waving at you in embarrassment. Must’ve caught how fast you ripped that headset off your face.

 

“Ok, Mr. Anon, these are pictures of the girls lifted from the contacts from the phone Karen sent to me the other day.” She scrolled the mouse wheel with command that brought up some aligned photos of a multitude of girls. None of which familiar.

 

“You can just get all this information so easily?”

 

“Yes… ehhhhh and no. It depends on the person. Some people are actually stupid enough to put private information all over the internet. Like PussBook, lots of retards even put their email, phone number, and address on it. I think some would even put their Social security number on it if it was an option. Usually it’s just easy stuff like that. That kinda hacking thing you see in movies is just movies. I mean, yeah, we do it, but it’s really rare. Ninety-percent of hacking is usually just intrusions through software weaknesses which allow people in.”

 

“How much do you know?”

 

“I know Karen’s real name is…” And an on queue glare from Queen herself. “Kaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaareeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeen. Uhhmm Ahem. Do you recognize any of these faces?”

 

“No, not one of them. She had two phones you sure you got the ri-wait, that one. I recognize that one.”

 

“The Ushi?”

 

“Yeah, she was there at…uhh nevermind.”

 

“Any other’s look familiar?”

 

“No.”

 

“Ooooookeeeiiiiiiii, turns out all these girls are either in or connected to the Marcotti family in some way or form.”

 

Karen joined at your side, sliding an arm up your back to softly grip your shoulder. Planting her cheek into your shoulder with a kiss.

 

“Ushi’s name is Agnessa Ivanova. Exoitic. Emigrated from Russia years ago. Kinda private, no social media.”

 

Karen held a strong interest in the woman. Glaring so intensely at one of your perpetrators. “And what’cha got on her?”

 

“I was able to pull up some documents from the city hall and found out she owns a few businesses. By their location, they look like fronts. Paint store in harlem, really outta place. Got a credit card too.” How scared of Karen are you Fiona?

 

“What else can you get outta all this?”

 

“…..Almost anything. I even got a credit card.”

 

“Hers?

 

“Yeah.”

 

“Can… can you ring up a charge?”

 

“Easy.”

 

“Buy something. Expensive.”

 

“Hmmm…”

 

Brrrrrrrrrrrbrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

Hardbass

Бочка, басс, колбасит соло! Бочка, басс, колбасит соло Бочка, басс!

 

A confused Ushi looked to the vibration in a pocket before pressing it to her ear.

 

“Hдllѳ? Щhдt? Иц, pizdec! ИФ! I did иѳt ѳяdeя five hциdяed dѳllдя’s wѳяth ѳf Ьlaygirl! сука

блять! Cдиcel ѳяdeя! Dѳ иѳt chдяge!”

 

You, Fiona, and Elizabeth were giggling like mad cunts.

 

“Ok enough, thats really all we need. Now we only need to get her alone and we can take her down.”

 

“Easy enough, Erika didn’t probably check in for a week so they’re probably expecting something.”

 

“Thats a good idea. Can send a text trying to set up a meeting. Still got her phone?” Karen natched the phone as Fiona pulled it out. Searching through contacts, contacts, contacts. Ah! This one was labeled Russian bitch! Guess… that had to be it eh? “Alright, this’ll do, we need to go get ready.”

 

Didn’t need much at the techie’s place, you did get what you need, and that’s all you wanted. A name, little else was necessary. Had the geeks not get any locales you could still text and get a location, but at least this way it would seem natural that “Erika” would know where something familiar was.

 

Karen hauled you off to a local safehouse. On the way dialing in a few numbers and amassing a small crew. Elizabeth was checking a rifle for you, making sure ammo was kept up, Karen was at your side tightening a bulletproof-vest, then seeing if she could fit a third one on top that.

 

“K, I’ll be fine.”

 

“I can’t stop worrying.”

 

“I got a lot of your girls with me. Don’t worry babe.” You went to take a rifle from Elizabeth whom rightly held it out to you. Karen was a tad dejected. “Don’t worry. I’ll be fine sweetheart.” Kinda perked up a smile. None too happy on Elizabeth’s side, but she said she’ll deal with it. Trust her.

 

“Once you send that text, you’re gonna start a war.”

 

“Karen.”

 

“Hmm?”

 

“Have you ever been in a… “war” before this?”

 

“Once… before I met you. Send it… and get ready.” Karen handed you the phone. Guess the one who passes judgement must perform execution.

 

Ay vrod debil, rush b cyk-Need to set up meeting, new info Karen/Anon. Meet at Paint shop, 1am.

 

Send.

 

дlяigнt.

 

Well thats it. The end of the world.

 

“Sent.”

 

“Alright. Ladies! Load up!” The safehouse turned into a military under alarm. They ran and moved everywhere, gathering up arms and ammo. Everyone moving with a purpose. Come to think of it, they’ve done this before, this was your first time.

 

“Stay calm. Stay alert. Use what I taught you. We’ve done this before.” Elizabeth had her hand on your shoulder. As reassuring as it was, it wasn’t like the other times. Now you were going to have a target on your back. Before you could straight up walk into enemy territory and not be so much as scoffed at. Now there were guns everywhere. “I taught you well, you learned well. You’ll be fine. Use those Jinko sense to stay ahead.” She actually took off both of the bullet proof-vests Karen put on you, in favor of giving you a higher protection level one that even had a shoulderpads. Swanky.

 

“Thank you Liz.”

 

“Always. I got your back.”

 

“How many of these ‘wars’ have you been in?”

 

“This is my first really. These things are rare. So rare you don’t hear about ‘em but once a decade even then it’s rare to know about them. Ever heard of the Manttanza?”

 

“No.”

 

“Exactly. The Second Mafia war back in the eighties. Usually a lot of shit has to go south for a war to even be mentioned. Only been two. One in the thirties and the Mattanza, or The Slaughter. Now it’s gonna be the late tens to who knows how long.” After finishing the last strap she gave you a cold hard stare. “You sure you want to do this? I mean, you’ve already sent a message with Matilda, Minnie, and that first bitch you crushed. They know they fucked up. You can stop now and they’ll know what they did.”

 

A pause.

 

A long one.

 

“Yes.”

 

This was the moment of truth.

 

The end of an era of your own life. With the pull of one trigger this would tip the barrel and spill the wine of war over the city. Wars were a misnomer for the concept. It was a quiet shadowy engagement between two parties that ended in many deaths, upwards of a thousand over the year long war of the Second Mafia war of the eighties. This is a different time and a different place. New York won’t settle for this. It’ll be always looking over the shoulder, always watching the shadows to see if you really saw movement or if you were just seeing things.

 

Cha-chik.

 

Four other girls filled the truck doing last minute checks on their equipment. All of them prepared. Who here really wanted this? I’m sure some did. There was always some sort of rivalry between the families. How many more were in the entire caravan?

 

This M4 was feeling mighty heavy.

 

No, no time for second thoughts. These bitches needed to pay for what they did to Hilde. But at what cost? These other girl’s lives? Did they deserve to reap your wrath? Allies or enemies alike, you only had six face on a board to wipe off with three already gone. Did five-thousand more women, wives, families need to suffer because of one little girl?

 

Fuck ‘em.

 

Thinking that over was a much needed reinforcement of steely resolve. It wasn’t just any little girl they decided to fuck with, it was your own. This car couldn’t get to the shop fast enough.

 

Another little cute little Brittney Halberd ringtone came through. Another text from Agnessa wondering where the fuck you were. Don’t worry little pet. Death is on it’s way.

 

I’m on my way. Almost there.

 

дlяigнt.

 

Give her enough so that she doesn’t leave while everything is getting into position. Soon after your tiny convoy found itself a block away from the Paint store. Karen was not here. She stayed home to do initial damage control and militarize movement of assets in preparation for the hell to come. Saying things like the commission would rain shit down upon her and that she’d have to draw lines at allies and enemies. No doubt her life was about to go from eight hour work days to sixty-four. Sorry babe.

 

You were with Liz and four other of what Karen considered her ‘Elite’. Elite in the weakest term since they weren’t exactly special forces trained or anything. Just Karen’s most trusted and experienced women. Some that looked to put Elizabeth’s experience to shame. For now, let more experienced women take the reigns until the shit show starts.

 

“Alright. Get the surround ladies, no one gets out.”

 

The woman sprang forth in action. Leaving the confines of a cramp alleyway. You were about to leave until one big ole’ woman with antlers. Deer? Elk? Whatever, took you by the shoulder and shook her head – “No”. And ya’know what that’s fine. Six-foot-five woman, snap your neck with her pinkie say no, then you stay here.

 

 

“You gonna stop me from getting in this?”

 

“No. We’re just going to take a different position. This way.” the woman led you out a path that crossed few other of the women that came. The Kingsguard led you out into a nearby alley that was on the side of the building. Elizabeth went over your own gear to make sure it was all primp-and-proper. You and Liz peaked out of the corner to the empty parking lot of the Paint warehouse about one-hundred feet away.

 

The lights were on and a collection of vehicles in the parking lot meant quite the group of women, must be the entourage, one as big as your own? Possibly, if every car was filled with women. There were no would-be transports, seems like personal cars, but there were a few of them. Some women outside in the lot shooting the shit. Maybe the Elk was right, if even these few caught any one of you all it’d be done there.

 

“Anyone got a silenced weapon?” You questioned Liz.

 

“I’m sure someone’s got something.” Liz reached up to her shoulder to ping a transceiver. “Anyone can go quiet?”

 

“Yeah I got something.” Came a voice responding.

 

“Alright Anon someone’s got-Anon? Anon?!” You were gone. Panic. She peeked around the corner to see you had already moved off to find closer cover. “Goddammit! Lets go!” She rushed off at a crouch after you and so did the others who were on the “Oh fuck” sensation. The group followed you as best they could, sprinting through a crouch position to the closest car. You were able to get up close behind a Pontiac before quiet air.

 

Psst

Psst

 

The Marcotti girls went from enjoying their laughter to panic as one of their own fell to the ground. All of them drawing out guns in the same moment.

 

“Fuck! We’re being hit!” She screamed out.

 

You took initiative, standing up and letting out a report of fire in their direction before being joined by Liz and the retinue. Your bullets tore into another girl before they were able to reposition themselves. They sprang forth firing a volley of their own, clipping one of your guards. You dropped down for cover, another squad of girls come out from an adjoining alley, laying down suppressive fire into them. More women spilled forth from the inside of armed with their own compliment of weapons. One was immediately taken out from the side-squad before two others got cover. You sprung forth for closer cover, gun trained on whatever areas they took, darting between every location. Pressing your shoulder into an S.U.V. in the way. The Guard followed you up at different ranges and distances.

 

With attention divided amongst the both attacking forces gave you an easy path to get closer. Popping out to launch a few more shells at a well exposed girl. Unable to make the kill, she sauntered back for better cover. You switched to the other side, proning below the cars allowed you to get a burst off on her ankles. Timber.

 

She screeched out in pain. She hit the ground facing you, The sight of her gaze at the barrel of an M4 was dreadful, at least while it still had a humanoid shape. You put a few more rounds into it. Another of their girls was taken down, but the last was able to make it back inside and scream one word.

 

“Jawfnovese!”

 

Here we go.

 

There was an explosion, by the intensity, a grenade. Need to hurry before the cops her here. Not like the guns were going to speed things up, but how many people could ignore a grenade?

 

Guns – gang violence. Grenade – what?

 

You sprang forth and made your way to the door. Another girl got there first and ripped you back before a hellfire of bullets tore through the door, trying to catch any assailant off guard. Thanks for the save girl. Couldn’t go through the door, but you needed a way to see inside.

 

Tin walls huh? You rose the M4 up and put a single round through the wall, figuratively and literally. Through which was a nice little peephole. Inside shit was getting real. The girls had already broken into the place and some casualties already mounting. However it looked like no one was focused on the door you next to you. More focused on the area opposite you and a giant hole in the wall. Agnessa! The whore of an Ushi was letting two uzi’s rip at friendlies.

 

You made a break through the door to some cover. From behind a counter you were able to snap shot a few at Agnessa. Hitting her in the large bulbous abdomen didn’t even seem to phase her. With all that amss the bullets probably didn’t penetrate far, or far enough to affect her. With all that adrenaline it seemed that the pain barely registered. She snapped to the sensation though, growing rage in sight of you.

 

“диѳи Jдwfиѳvese!”  

 

Well fuck. You ducked down before your head came off from a flurry of Nine-millimeter fire from those Uzi’s. You poked nothing but the gun up. Firing wildly if only to provide a screen for her to stop. It worked, she had scurried off to find her own cover. You rose, sprinting off after her.

 

Agnessa led you on a battle through the warehouse. She turned to rip out some more bullets that forced you off to a side aisle. The both of you running along one another letting them guns rip. With an ounce of cosmic luck neither of you landing hits on one another. You both came out after the aisle with guns pressed against one another. Hammering those triggers with only clicks to accompany them. You both held there for a second. Hoping there was at least one bullet in between the clicks of an empty magazine. She grunted loudly in annoyance, bringing up one of her thick legs to kick you back a good ten feet into another aisle. She ran once again, reaching into pockets to pull out more magazines.

 

You had to do the same, diving for more cover available, a large wooden spindle before more bullets whipped past. It gave a moment’s respite to slam in a new magazine. This fight was more evenly than others had been. You went on the offensives forcing her defense. She went on the offense forcing your defense. Both scoring hits on the other, but damn she was like a tank, Ushi must’ve been all meat under that hide. Thank god Elizabeth gave you a better armor. Agnessa continued the chase, climbing up some of the shelves to gain a height advantage over you making cover all the harder to find. She now lead you on chase around the shop.

 

While she was able to get the height advantage over you, she wasn’t able to land a single shot. Despite the lack of cover from that angle there was still quite a bit of obstruction to block you. She chased you in small circle, offsetting her bursts so she could reload one while firing the other. She followed on confidently, walking atop aisles to try and get that final kill shot. Confidence didn’t look good on her. She took one wrong step onto a shelf you were behind, not knowing you were already pushing it down. One shelf lead to two and two to three, she came tumbling with them.

 

Now it was back to even ground. Just two duelists, a raging fire, and murder in the background. Back at it again.

 

This entire fight had been two combatants struggling for the greater position. You both raised guns at each other, firing off salvos trying to get one another. You clipped her abdomen, and notably her legs. Didn’t seem to stop her though such a thicc woman would take hits and keep moving, it was obvious however that you had the upper hand. You weren’t untouched either, but most of the shells hit padded portions of the armor or missed entirely. The problem of dual wielding, and Uzi’s nonetheless. Her large body made movement with all the misshapen materials difficult, you were the more dominant fighter.  She didn’t have the capability of cover as you did. That was until a hearty truck took you to the ground.

 

“Run! Tell Helen the Jawfnovese got hits on us!”

 

One of Agnessa’s girls came toppling on top of you. Tackling you out of nowhere. Always a problem, never clear cut and to the point. Why the fuck couldn’t these hits be like the movies where you just run up on someone put some rounds into their restaurant and walk away. No, you had to be strangled, shot, bullied, stabbed, perforated, slashed, swiped, stung, broken, and slammed. Tackled to add to it. Your fight now turned to hate someone else. It was a wolf, a good old fashion fight between cats and dogs. Trying so hard to claw out your eyes. Your wriggling proving difficult for her to even to that, couldn’t get a hand on you. Your claws weren’t nearly as sharp as they could be. They could still break skin though. The claws tearing at each other’s skin like children on the playground again.

 

Agnessa shuffled off, dragging one leg behind her. The Wolf was a new story though. She came in fresh, or at least as fresh she could be. She had a vigor that outmatched yours through no doubt not having to run around the warehouse like rats. She was vicious. Moreso than Agnessa, but that up to different species. The Wolf tried everything she could to put you down. Having to resort to gripping at your throat. Panic set in. Immediately feeling the pressure on the brain. Your hands went up to try anything to push her off, only being successful when your thumb claw met her eye. Her distracted screams allowed you to push her off. Such a sweet rush of blood to the skull.

 

You couldn’t allow her to come back with an resolve. You dove at her, unleashing combos that would’ve made Elizabeth proud. The girl wasn’t able to keep up. Your punches kept her back. Able to overwhelm her through flurries but something seemed off. She still had a trick up her sleeve.

 

A knife, a butterfly knife more specifically. She was trained… in as specific of an area as possible. She flipped and twirled it around that signified well earned dexterity. She knew how to wield a blade and not her own fist. Whipping out what little defense she knew. This knife changed the entire dynamic. She was able to swipe and cut with that knife like her life actually depended on it. Claws had nothing on iron. She pressed forward with an offence that you weren’t prepared for. Elizabeth kept you prepared for what you were most likely going to ever encounter. A single opponent with either a terribly trained weapon in hand or another fisticuff. Best to train for the widest range for opponent, not this niche shit. It wasn’t something you weren’t entirely unprepared for. The only way a knife can produce damage is through it’s edge and point and only through the direction it faces.

 

That gave you your game plan at least. If she swung it, it could only come from that current angle and for the most part she kept to that schema. Swing, recover, swing, recover, stab, slice, swing, recover. Remember the five D’s of fighting: duck, dodge, dip, dive, and… dodge. She was barely able to make the smallest knicks. Waiting for moments you could launch into hit with a counter attack, as few and far between those moments were. So long as you kept your back free for movement it would’ve been… until you put yourself into a cornered position. Trying to gauge your environment through foot movement alone lead you to being surrounded by fallen crates, shelves and the like. Then a knick, a prick, a sharpness in the side. Unable to move anywhere, you did best to push the knife out of the way only to have it dig into your side. You grabbed her arm, despite the knife digging a line through your side it was in a far better position. One of more control. She flipped the knife so that it still faced you and tried to rip it back outward. Resistance was crucial if you didn’t want to lose a kidney. She tugged, you tugged, you won. Continue the momentum, turn, lodge the knife in her sternum.

 

All breath left the lungs. You had pierced the diaphragm and that was a death sentence. She’d have to already be on the table surrounded by surgeons to survive this. She collapsed, unable to breath or gasp, or exhale, goodbye little furball. You stood over her for a moment, before taking off after Agnessa. There could only be one place Aggy would’ve gone, had to be to a phone. Either the front desk or office if she didn’t have the cell already on her. You went off in the direction that Aggy took, but not before taking the knife along with you.

 

You hobbled off, grasping the wound. Trying to make your way after Agnessa. Even with two mangled legs she’d make better headway. She wasn’t too far ahead. You rose the rifle to bear once again, unable to make any clean hits aiming with one arm.

 

“C’mere you bitch! Don’t you run from me! You made your bed, come sleep in it!” You taunted.

 

“Goddammit Anon!” Elizabeth screamed as you dove into the fire. Leaving her behind at the door cut off by another wave of gunfire. Ducking back while some stray lead knicked the arm. She winced, but now was not a time to reel in pain, eat it, rush into the fire and save the belov-save the king. In a moment’s respite, Elizabeth lept through the door frame to the cover you had used only to find herself a moment too late to rip back your collar and keep you in cover. Muttering another “Goddammit” to herself, she rose to bring her own rifle to bear upon the enemy. Letting loose bursts of hate onto enemy positions whom she’d not know if struck. She had to duck back down in their own retaliation for face the super-sonic torrents of death herself. Her gaze darted back and forth from her position, trying to catch all angles of attack to not be surprised herself. She locked eyes with shotgun toting death from a back of an office. On reflex, Elizabeth went for the Bull at her waist. Turning the woman to a fine red mist.

 

Elizabeth sharply spun around to negate her blind spots. She’d see the rest of the Kingsguard try to rush into the warehouse, only for one of them to collapse to the ground. Elizabeth rose once more to provide covering fire for the rest of the girls. A stark pain took her by the arm. She dropped to cover once more. She examined herself for the cause of the wound. Turning away at the mere sight of a bloody patch forming at her bicep.

 

“Fuck…” She stayed down, the hit reawakening a sense of survivalism. No longer focused on trying to help her allies, but now focused on the sounds of the firefights. Listening to how the rasping thunder roiled about until she knew a good time to stand and take a few more shots. She popped eyes forwards to see three women holding back Liz’s own. Propping the gun on the table for added stability. Elizabeth was able to scratch one out the fight, carefully lining up a shot to put a hole right above the left eye. Liz winced as the blowback put a wave of pain through the bullet struck arm. “Goddammit Anon.”

 

Elizabeth was about to put down another when a large spider-like woman came running behind the group with mangled leg. Agnessa. The bitch didn’t look like she’s changed much over three years anyhow. The other two girls that remained looked far busier having to be woman-handled by a large Elk-woman while the other cowered in cover. Elizabeth sprang forth, running through the distractions to continue chase. She’d leave behind her rifle, only slowing her down at this point. Brandishing the Bull. Liz lead with it, clasping the wound to dull as much pain as possible. Agnessa made an awkward climb up a set of stairs. Followed closely by Elizabeth.

 

Elizabeth fired off a few rounds at the Ushi. Conservatively, however. One arm can reload a revolver only so quickly. Bullets ricocheted off metal of a shelf a foot away. One of Agnessa’s girls came to protect. A woman whom charged with hate. Elizabeth snapped out the gun to the girl’s throat. Snapping the throat to cause the woman to go into choking spasms. Elizabeth placed the gun at her chest, following the woman to the ground whilst unleashing the rest of the cylinder into her chest.

 

“Heleи! Heleи! They дre cѳming fѳя цs! Дnѳn is дt the wдяehѳuse with д cяew! Get Lдskд! Tell them the Jдwfnѳvese дяe stдrting д wдя! Get-ДHHHHHHHHHHHH!” One blast screamed above the yelling. The Bull called out a name and a scream responded. “ElizдЬeth.”

 

“Aggy.” Elizabeth held the gun with an unnerving calm. Her eyes sullen with anger. She didn’t want to be here. At one point they called each other friend.

 

“Hѳw dдre yѳц jѳiи them. Hѳw dдяe yѳu betядy цs! Yѳця fдmily! Yѳц Ьled with цs. Yѳц Ьitch!”

 

“Was, but then again we never were a family, huh? It was always professional. Just how you made it.”

 

“Bцllshit! Yѳц weяe neveя a Mдяcѳtti! We tяeдted yѳц like fдmily.”

 

“Well, thats one fucked up family.”

 

“Фh?! Cдlling ‘цs’ fцcked цp?! Yѳц’яe the cѳld bitch thдt did eveяythiиg we tѳld yѳц tѳ! We mѳlded yѳц fѳr the Mдfiд life! Yѳц did eveяythiиg withѳцt qцestioи! Yѳц did sѳme hѳяяible thiиgs диd yet yѳц leдve ѳver ѳиe little-”

 

“You know damn well it wasn’t just because of that. That “little” thing was nothing. That “little” thing couldn’t compare.”

 

“Диd yet yѳц did them диywдy. I wѳиdeя hѳw fдst yѳц did Kдяeи’s teяяible thiиgs.”

 

“I’m not that kinda person anymore.”

 

“Bцllshit. I bet yѳц did sѳme teяяible thiиgs fѳя them.” Elizabeth was starting to quiver. Gripping her revolver white-knuckled. “Yѳц яeдlly did chдиge, gѳt weдk. Sѳ whдt did yѳц dѳ fѳя them Beth? Bяeдk д few диkles? Pцt д few hѳt pѳkeяs iи sѳme eyes? Yѳц дlwдys hдd the best wдys tѳ get peѳple tѳ tдlk.”

 

“You raped and beat the man I love. You beat and tortured his daughter. You deserve much more than this. ” Elizabeth tightened her grip on the gun, eyes tearing up in memories of seeing you on the floor.

 

“Sѳ thдts whдts this is дboцt, heh? Фh c’mѳи thдt cди’t be whдt this is. Yѳц lѳѳѳѳѳѳѳѳѳve him? Yѳц didи’t eveи knѳw him wheи yѳц left.”

 

“No, I left long before I knew him, but you made this personal when you did.”

 

“I’ll дdmit. I wдsи’t tѳѳ hдppy дbѳцt it. I didи’t wдnt tѳ tѳrtцяe him ѳя thдt little shit ѳf his. Фяdeяs дяe ѳяders, дяeи’t they?” Liz took one step forward. “Thдts tѳѳ mцch eveи fѳя цs. I lѳved yѳu like д sisteя Elizдbeth. Yѳu дяe д piece ѳf shit. Nѳ lѳyalty. WE ЯДISED YФЦ!” Agnessa snapped her gun forward to trade a few shots with Elizabeth, but no nine-millimeter could compare to the Bull. Agnessa laid furthermore destroyed. Unable to maintain her weight as weakness became more apparent. “Shѳѳt me yѳц whѳяe! Shѳw me hѳw mцch yѳц’яe яeдlly cдpдble ѳf! Shѳw me yѳц’яe still ѳиe ѳf цs!” Oh you’d like that would you? Liz pulled back on the hammer. For once, unable to let it rock.

 

“No.” The other girls were starting to gather around at this point. The violence dying off around the warehouse. They surrounded the Ushi, raising weapons at her. “Stop. This isn’t ours.”

 

Excitement pushed you up the stairs  at what awaited beyond the door. You came through the door in fury. Eyes of a group of women turned to you. They followed you from the door to them. You ripped back some out the way to make a path for you to see the weakened Agnessa, battered and destroyed, collapsed on the floor.

 

She held her hand out to your, to the barrel of your gun. Trying to manage a word before being blown apart by your sidearm. Halfway through your magazine the rest of the group joined in to put her down. Elizabeth looked to you, clutching her stomach. She had been bleeding profusely from multiple points. She fell to you for brace. Catching her, you lifted her to your arms in bridal carry. Baby blues staring into yours.

 

The drive home was a silent one. Coming home from a family barbeque where you found that one cousin you had a drunk one-night stand with that turned out to be your aunt instead. The other girls were pissed to say the least. They had to hurt for your rage. Least to say they weren’t ecstatic to serve you. Elizabeth laid across your lap. Clutching her stomach and bleeding across you. All you were able to offer were solemn head-pats. The other girls didn’t care. No words of solace. Didn’t even look at you. This car was one more seat empty. Still, this was the life they joined. Maybe not the one they wanted or dreamed of, but one they voluntarily signed up for. So was the army.

 

The tattered Kingsguard rushed to a local hospital known to the family. One that was quite in on the know. If by “know” there was probably an envelope of thirty-thousands dollars in large bills, speaking of which this hospital was familiar, the one you were taken to after that night. The jolting stop didn’t do well for your bruises. Two hopped out the car, taking Elizabeth off your lap and into the hospital, no doubt to also treat their own wounds. One stayed to bring you back home.

 

At home now, the car made an unpleasant u-turn in the approach. The skill the woman had in being able to make such an abrupt turn all while looking at you was far more disturbing than the glare she lingered on you to silently “Get Out.”. Damn, not even halfway up the driveway too. Still, you voluntarily removed yourself from the car before you felt that you were about to be forcefully. Then a slight trek up the driveway. Lights shone through floodlights to lead a husband back home. Lets send Karen a text.

 

I’m outside.

 

A shadow crossed the windows from left-to-right-to-door. A large pair of wings among a petite silhouette stifled the light that flowed from the door. Pausing momentarily until it came running out and grasped you under the arms.

 

“Oww.” You put your arms around your sweet little dragon, waddling your way inside.

 

The next more was an awakening to pain. Little dragon fingers traced lines and designs over your chest. Damn your chest was bruised. That vest held up.

 

“You’re lucky.”

 

“Always am.”

 

“I’m lucky.”

 

“I’m just happy nothing turned out too bad.” She planted kisses over every bruise she could find.

 

“You got your ass kicked by an Ushi.”

 

“Well, I’m the one that walked away.” Karen was not humored in the slightest.

 

“Elizabeth’s in the hospital, she’ll be fine, four bullets, nine-millimeter. If she’s lucky, they’ll heal without a scratch. I’ma go run a bath.” That was heartwarming to hear. She was fine. That’s all that mattered. Gonna need to take her out to dinner and eat her out real good to make up for it. Oooooooooh it was painful to sit-up. Your best was covered in bruising, a large purple blotch covering twenty-five percent of your chest. After managing the will to stand, you joined Karen in the bathroom. Teasingly removing that silk gown as slowly as possible. Wrapping you in those comforting wings. The bath was soothing. Hot water, a lounging dragon, a bath made up of ninety percent epsom salt. She took over for a masseuse. Massaging those weak muscles, bruises, and dick. That was the gentlest sex since the earliest days of your relationship. Getting out of the bath was harder. Not because of the comfort, but the mirror you had to look into while getting out. Your body was beaten and bruised. The reaper always had a cost and every payment was different.

 

You stayed in front of the mirror for just a bit longer. Mousing over a few of the wounds and scars you’ve accumulated. In the short time that you’ve fallen into the deep end. How was that saying? Power corrupts? Maybe it was the luck of facing so much dangers and coming out… relatively unscathed. How many lives were left after all?

 

Karen led you out to the kitchen where a large breakfast awaited the both of you. Karen took to your side at the island. Caringly doting on every little thing you needed. Courting you like the early days. One leg crossed over yours. Feeding you your own food. She had a wonderfully brilliant smile. Feeding you more food, a kiss, then more food, a kiss, more food, a kiss.

 

It was hearty. A large course meal Janet had prepared. Somehow more robust than ever. Somehow more deliciously terrible than ever before. The food itself was absolutely terrific. There had to be some kind of maid school that Janet passed with flying colors to make meals this good. Put Giordana Ramsey to shame, but it all taste like ash. Bitter would be a more fitting word. Even a tad coppery. Surviving last night was an ordeal.

 

“Ok Anon.” Karen rose from the chair, planting one final kiss to your skull. “Gotta work, lots of stuff to do.”

 

“I’m sorry.”

 

“… it’s alright.” her smile was still bright. How?

 

“Everything alright Master Anon?” Janet quipped.

 

“Uhh, yeah. I’m fine.”

 

“I’m so pleased that you and Mistress Karen are coming together again so well. I was sorely afraid that something terrible might come between you two. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed serving the family. I would’ve hated to see it separated.”

 

“Errr, yeah. Me too.”

 

“I believe you and Karen were meant to be.”

 

“Janet, what would you have done in my position?”

 

“Well. Can’t say, I’ve never really been in such a position so I can’t say. Can’t really relate, but if I were to take a guess. I’d say I wouldn’t be too far off from yourself Master Anon. I do my best to control, but I think I would’ve went ballistic.”

 

“But I mean, what would you have done?”

 

“Now that is a question I cannot answer. We all would do things differently. One thing I can say for certain is that we all must do what we feel is right. What we feel we must in any situation. How we feel best at handling it. I can’t give you an answer to that question because my answer wouldn’t be right for you Anon. You need to figure out what you feel is right and it’s not my place to give you answer answer that you can’t give yourself.”

 

“… Thank you Janet.”

 

“Always Master Anon.”

You continued to pick at food your stomach still wanted. Janet was making smaller and smaller portions to conserve. Then a knocking at the door.

 

“Oh! I’ll get it!” Janet perked up, always a pep in her step. You watched in curiosity of Janet. She opened the door to a large figure, then curtseyed. Who the fuck would Janet curtsey for? “Master Anon. For you.” WAT.

 

You rose to see Janet giggling with whomever that was. Curiously inching along as best your body could manage. As you neared the door janet moved to the side.

 

Oh God.

 

“Hi… Mrs. Karen.”

 

“Oh Anon, please call me Mom. Are you going to invite me in?”

 

————————————————————————————————–

 

Hildegarde will be retconned from here on out, as well as be fixed in previous chapters to what she should realistically be.

 

I apologize for how long this has taken me to get out. I’m sorry for the terrible quality it has produced. Despite its time. I feel I owe you more that I wasn’t able to produce. I feel this was severely under quality for what I should be putting out. So I want to apologize to all my readers if this isn’t what you were expecting.

 

As always, not proofread

 

Next chapter, whenever the fuck, don’t wait up

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