Gangrene Queen

Girl on the Town

Angela wasn’t sure where to start with her newfound freedom. Where could she go? She hopped on a bus out of the wealthy community and into the downtown area. Back in Cityville, she was never allowed to venture downtown by herself, even in broad daylight.

Townsville was very quiet at night. Almost everything closed at around eight or nine. How boring was that? The only people on the street were the bums, the creepers, the thieves, and so on.

A sketchy character that looked to be in his early thirties walked up to her. He was balding slightly and had a porn-star moustache. He put a hundred dollars in her hand. Angela was absolutely dumbfounded.

“What’s this for?” She asked.

“You’re a pretty lady,” he said through his rat-like teeth. “Aren’t you gonna give me something in return?”

“Eww, you’re a sicko,” Angela shuddered.

“Come here, and I’ll show you what you’re supposed to do,” the sketchy guy said. He grabbed her from behind. Angela elbowed him in the stomach then kicked him in the shin. She backhanded him in the nose as he cursed and dropped her like a hot potato, giving her a chance to run as fast as she could.

She wasn’t ever taught self-defense in the fancy private schools she attended, but years of getting into brawls with her prissy classmates had taught her a thing or two about fighting. What would that guy have done to her? Oh well. It never happened, so she didn’t have to think about it. Angela then stopped to realize that she was either the craziest girl alive or the bravest. A very small part of her wanted to turn back and return to the safety Morbucks Mansion. The rest of her wanted to wait and see what would happen next.

Angela continued walking, spending most of her time picking the pockets of various vagrants or picking through trash to see if anyone left behind anything useful. She was no expert thief; she’d only stolen from the kitchens at home and at school, and she’d broken into the headmistress’s office to retrieve her confiscated pranking items. However, it was still enough practice for her to get really good at pick-pocketing.

After a few hours, Angela was grew increasingly tired and cold, and she was feeling a little lonely. Going home sounded like a good idea right about now.

That is, until she came to a dark alleyway behind Townsville Electronics.

Behind the building was an enormous truck full of valuable electronics: DVD players, televisions, game systems, the works. Angela’s eyes widened. She glanced around. No one was in sight.

She’d never stolen a big-ticket item like this before. Why bother? Her parents would just buy it for her.

This wasn’t quite like the movies, but if Angela was going to be Queen of Thieves, she had to start somewhere.

She quickly climbed into the back of the truck as fast as she could. She grabbed a box containing a very expensive DVD player and quickly jumped out of the truck, darting behind a trash can when the truck driver slammed the gate of the truck closed and hopped back into the driver’s seat. The truck disappeared into the night.

Angela sprinted towards the end of the alley and nearly smacked into a tall, skinny guy with slick black hair, dark shades, a peach fuzz mustache, and a colorful vest. He was surrounded by four other creepy-looking guys and all of them with sickly green skin. They looked to be roughly her age, maybe a few years older at the most.

“Yer outta yer territory, ain't ya, pretty lady?” He asked her. “This is our turf. We’s been comin’ here to steal stuff for a long time. Longer than you have.”

“Psh, if you’re looking for the inventory truck, it’s gone. You just missed it,” Angela said as she rolled her eyes at him, still clutching the DVD player tightly in her hands.

“Ace, I don’t think she’s sssscared of usss,” Ace’s serpentine companion hissed as Ace clocked him in the jaw.

“Why would I be scared of you guys?” Angela asked. “I mean, you guys are green for God’s sake. What’s so scary about that?”

The five members of the Gangrene Gang just stopped and stared at Angela, gawking at the box in her hands.

“Were you looking for this?” She asked slyly as she showed them the box containing the DVD player. She grinned wickedly. “I might share this with you if you give me something in return.”

“What is it you want?” Ace wanted to know. “We don’t got nothin’.”

“Got a place I can crash for the night?” Angela asked. There was definitely no point in her going back to Morbucks Mansion right now. Not with adrenaline still coursing through her veins.

“You’re an interesting girl,” Ace said as he studied Angela carefully. “I’ve never seen you before. What’s yer name?”

“Angie,” Angela replied, remembering the alias she planned on using. “And is there any chance there’s a place around here that’s not closed at nine at? If you can name one, dinner’s on me.”

“Yeah right,” Ace scoffed.

“Wanna bet?” Angela asked as she took out the money the sketchy guy looking for a good time gave her.

“Where’d you get that?” Arturo asked as their eyes all widened in disbelief.

“Let’s just say that people apparently give you a lot of things just for being pretty,” Angela grinned. She couldn’t take her eyes off of the leader of the green gangsters, no matter how hard she tried. She’d never felt this way before, but nothing could wipe that grin off her face. She felt her face getting warmer and her heart began to beat harder. She wondered what kind of eyes were behind those shades. If only he weren’t green, he’d probably be even cuter.

“Come on. I know a place that’ll deliver pizza at three in the morning,” Ace said.

Back at the shack in the Townsville dump, the Gangrene Gang and their new female acquaintance sat around a wooden table and devoured a supreme pizza. The guys debated on what they should do the next day. Ace continued to eye the strange girl they picked up in the alley. He knew she’d been staring at him all night, giggling at every word he said, her face turning so red you could land a plane on it. He could see right through that shit-eating smile on her face.

Ace was normally very quick to grab an opportunity when it reared its ugly head, but this time, he wasn’t sure if there was one. He could just lead her on the same way he led on Buttercup, but what would be the point? Sure, this girl had sticky fingers and it was very easy for her to get her way simply because she was pretty, but she really didn’t have anything he wanted. Yet.

He would let her stay for as long as she needed to. Maybe eventually there would be something of hers that he absolutely had to have. And then he could take advantage of this little schoolgirl crush she had on him.

She couldn’t see his eyes; few people could from behind his shades. But she knew he was looking at her.

“What are you looking at?” Angela asked teasingly as she giggled like the silly little schoolgirl she was. He hated that laugh. The only thing that he could think of that was more annoying was the sound of Snake talking.

“Hey Ace,” Snake said. “She asssked you a quesssstion.” Ace merely socked him in the jaw.

Ace continued to discreetly look over Angela carefully while Arturo, Snake, and Angela argued about whether or not they should spend the day de-pantsing random people or making fun of the nerds that loitered outside the comic book store as Grubber and Big Billy were having a belching contest. For now, Ace would just have to wait and see what this girl was all about.


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