V I C S A G E
Location and Time: Hub City, Illinois - New Years Eve, 11:34 PM Interaction(s): None
The pulse pounding beat emanating from my stereo combined with the three energy drinks I had just chugged were enough to keep the adrenaline flowing through my blood. These back roads are empty, far away from everyone that's getting ready to watch the fireworks from across the river. Part of me thinks that I could hit up the festivities when I'm done, but I have no time for those thoughts. Right now all I've got on my mind is a warehouse full of punks one of my contacts told me about. Some no-good gangsters squatting there, using it for drugs or weapons or whatever else I've got no clue, all my contact told me was that there was bad stuff going on there. I probably should take it with a grain of salt, after all Roscoe had a habit of hitting the sauce, but he's never steered me wrong before. This is much, much bigger than anything else he's brought me, though.
No time to doubt him though. I'm here. I pull my VW up to the warehouse, killing the stereo and grabbing the ski mask off the dashboard. Sliding it on and opening the car door, I step out and approach the side door of the warehouse. I open it slightly and peek in, gazing around and trying to gauge what's going on in here. Just dusty old boxes as far as the eye can see until... There. A group of men sitting around a table. Only a single light pierces the darkness of the warehouse, but from what little I can see I'm positive these are mobsters or some such. I can feel the cold dam of detachment that's been holding back my anxiousness begin to strain, begging to let loose. I haven't been this nervous since my first fist fight. I need to hit something, someone
I keep a hold on my jacket tighter. No, give it a minute. Walk forward, announce your presence, give them a chance to surrender. Like a hero would. You're a hero, Sage, not some crazy vigilante. Continuing to hold back the building tension within myself with a snarl, I step forward into the single light so the thugs can see me. They continue sitting there until I see the motions of one nudging his buddy. Quickly, they all scramble from their seats and stare at me with apprehension. For a moment I wonder why I thought this would be smart as now one of them was definitely gonna shoot me. He spoke, "Y-yo, what do you want, man?! This is our t-turf!"
The voice belonged to a teenager, and was that specific tone that indicated you were terrified yet still trying to be fearless.
Hearing his words, the growing tension within me died out slowly. I pieced it together; these weren't badass mobsters, these were kids playing at being a gang. My suspicions about this info had
been right, and I was stupid enough to follow through anyway. Now I was facing down a couple scared kids trying to be cool. "Don't want anything. I came to the wrong place. I'll leave."
I raise my hands as I speak, trying to appearing non-threatening.
One of the other boys steps forward. "Bullshit! You're probably here to take our place over. Well we won't let you! Me and the boys are gonna fuck you up,"
he says, voice steady and confident unlike his comrade. In a quieter voice I hear him whisper to his friends, "Just like we always talked about. Rush him on three."
The kid definitely has a future in politics, as his taunts toward me seem to bolster the confidence of his gang. They all grab nearby wooden bats and two-by-fours, probably never actually used as weapons before, and begin to take menacing steps towards me. Four in all. I can take them.
Quietly, I hear their leader count up from one...
I step back as one of the kids rushes ahead of the rest and swings his bat at me, missing by scant inches. I throw a jab at him, catching him in the side of the neck. He drops his weapon and grabs his throat, letting out a gasp. I pick up the bat and raise it above my head, swinging it hard into his head. The wooden piece of sports equipment knocks him clean to the floor and sends me stumbling forward from the sudden stop against his head. A two-by-four finds its way into my gut and I stumble backwards, accidentally dodging a baseball bat that would have caught me in the side of the head.
I drop my bat to the floor, barely keeping my footing after the attack. With a yell the leader swings his bat at me, but I manage to raise an arm and block it. I feel pain shooting up the limb from the hit and give a slight hiss. Doesn't matter. I grab the bat and yank it from him, sending him stumbling forward and right into a left hook to the jaw. He falls to the ground and I kick him in the head, knocking him out.
The other two probably would have surrendered at the sight of me standing over their unconscious leader if they weren't about as high off adrenaline as I was. They both run forward together, one swinging his bat at my head while the other swings his two-by-four at my side. I use my bat to block the first hit while repositioning myself in an attempt to avoid the second. I manage to block one attack but the other manages to catch me in the ribs. The wind knocked out of me, I stumble back and barely have time to recover enough for another dodge as a bat swings right past my face.
I reel away and create distance between myself and my opponents. Looking around, I spot an empty, sturdy crate that looks just small enough for me to lift. Tossing my bat at the two punks, I manage to nail one in the chest and knock him back before I sprint for the box. The other comes running after me, readying his two-by-four as I lift the box up over my head. Barely stepping out of the way of a wild swing, I slam the crate down onto his head and send him to the floor with a grunt. To be safe, I give him a quick kick in the side.
The last one is steadying himself by the time I return to him, gripping his head and mumbling incoherently. I pick up the discarded bat and ready it, before giving a sharp whistle. He turns his head towards me and I swing, snapping his head back and sending him back to the floor. A bit worried, I kneel down and check his pulse; still alive. Good. Don't need to kill anyone.
I look around at the unconscious teenagers, shaking my head. What a damn idiot I was for believing that old drunk. The most he ever gets me is gangs like this, so expecting him to come through on a tip about an actual mob racket? Too good to be true. With a sigh, I drop the bat to the floor and leave the warehouse behind. Best not to call the cops on these little punks, they'll probably get in enough trouble with their parents as is.
Taking off the ski mask and tossing it onto the dashboard, I wince as the adrenaline finally begins to die down and my wounds come back to haunt me. Definitely gonna be some bruises. If I'm unlucky enough I might have cracked a rib or something. Guess I'll find out in the morning. I start up the VW and drive away from the warehouse.
I drive myself to Hubert Square, parking my car and approaching the gathering crowd that's waiting there and chanting the countdown. I look down at my watch. Just in time, only a few seconds until New Years. Smiling slightly to myself, I join in, "Five! Four! Three! Two! One!"
Happy New Year.