HeavyLight: Chapter 15
I think we’ve all seen those movies where the guys escape a place by crawling through the ventilation. Now, most people don’t actually do this, but it happened to me and Dougman when we escaped the closet of the tenement we were being held in. I’m here to tell you that it’s probably one of the stupidest things you can do. For one thing, the paneling is cold under your touch, like really cold. The AC that runs through it all the freaking time keeps it freezing to the touch. Also, it’s pretty loud in there was well. There is the constant blowing of wind as well as the echoing sound of your movement down the shaft. I hope I never have to infiltrate a facility by way of ventilation, it was that bad.
But we had to get out of that place with the Bomb and Box Turtle didn’t seem to want to give it up the first time. So that put us in the position of having to pry it out of his cold, dead, swiss-cheese like hands. We needed to get guns in order to do that though. So Dougman and I were clomping along down this vent, with me in front and him behind me. I had the phone pressed against my ear, listening to Marcy’s instructions. “Alright, I’m tracking your progress through the signal on your phone. Up ahead you are going to take a right at the end of the shaft. There is a vent on the bottom that you can kick out. That should get you inside the place.” She said.
“Good because I’m tired of looking at Red’s bass.” Dougman said.
“Quiet back there.” I whispered over my shoulder. We kept going, eventually finding the vent that she mentioned. I couldn’t kick it though because I was on my hands and knees so I tried to palm it like a ninja. That didn’t work so I tried to headbutt it, which also didn’t work. I just ended up with a criss cross pattern imprinted across my forehead. “Ow...ow...okay ow....hey, you got like a screwdriver or something?” I asked.
I felt Dougman’s hand hovering over my shoulder and saw that he was holding his pocket knife with the knife part sticking out. I took it and said “good enough” before going to undo the screws with the blade. Most of them were pretty rusty so it didn’t take long to get some of them out. When I saw that it was able to fall off, i punched it and it fell to the floor in the room below. I climbed down into the room after that and stepped out of the way so that Dougman could come down too. While he was struggling to climb down into the room, I looked around.
It was a very well lit room inhabited by tables covered in illegally obtained firearms. There were also boxes and crates off to the side that were probably filled with weaponry as well. Some pretty cool looking weapons inhabited these tables; some carbines, some revolvers, a shotgun or two. To top it off it was littered with all kinds of ammunition. I felt like I was in a candy shop, and that I was about to gorge on some lead-filled, high caliber candy. Dougman managed to climb down without hurting himself and was staring around the room with me. “Huh...there’s a lot of guns in here...” he said.
“...You know what? You should have been a detective.” I pointed out sarcastically.
Marcy came back on the phone with some more info. “I’ve already alerted Steve and Jim about what has happened. They arrived 34 seconds ago and are not at the front of the building. The feed I’m getting from one of the outside security cameras is that they are under fire from several Tungsten Toboggan gang members.” She explained.
“Alright, well we’re inside the Armory. If they can keep some of those guys off of us, we’ll make a beeline for Box Turtle’s office and get the bomb.” I said.
She affirmed that and Dougman was already at the table, picking through it. “Man...I’m looking for a weapon that isn’t too heavy but fires heavy rounds. What should I use?” He asked.
“I dunno...how about a sawed off shotgun? It’s like a regular shotgun...but shorter.” I said.
He thought about it and shook his head. “Naw...I’ll just go for a carbine.” he said, pulling a 5.56 mm rifle off the table and slinging it over his shoulder. Since I was holding the phone to my ear in one hand, I could only use a one handed weapon. So I picked up a nickel plated pistol and stuffed as many magazines as I could into my left pocket. Dougman had found his sidearm and had also loaded up on ammo so now we could officially leave. So we mosied on up to the door and listened to it to see if there was anybody standing guard outside.
I could hear some loud thumping and some angry grunting. I wasn’t sure what was going on out there but I could tell that it wasn’t good. So I glanced at Dougman and whispered “...I think there’s some guy out there. Maybe more than one. Get ready...” I said, holding my pistol in one hand and the phone in another.
Dougman read me clearly and went to the door. He had his hand on the doorknob and I stood behind him, ready to point the gun at whatever was waiting outside of the door. On the count of three he opened it up and I raised the pistol, pointing it at whoever was in the hallway. Now, I didn’t expect to see what I saw, and here is what I could see; there were two thugs lying on the floor with bloody cheeks. Some girl wearing a JFK mask was standing over them with a bloody crowbar. I just stood there staring at her, not sure what to say. “Uh...fancy meeting you here...” I said.
She saw me and pulled up the mask with one hand, exposing to me that she was No Face Lacey. I had forgotten that that was her mask of choice and it was pretty crazy. She smiled widely and said “What’s up, comrade?”
I walked up and wrapped my arms around Lacey, pulling her into my embrace. Then I just stood there whispered quietly “it's so great to see you...it’s so great man...I don’t know what I would have done without you...” And that went on for an awkward 20 seconds. Lacey just stayed there with her arms hanging down, locked in my weird embrace.
Dougman stepped forward and put a hand on my shoulder, pulling me back. “That’s enough bro. You’re creeping her out the same way you do to most girls.” He said.
So I step back and scratch the back of my head nervously. “Yeah...sorry. But anyway, it’s good to see you here. I assume you’ve caught on to the fact that the Tungsten Toboggans are attacking.” I pointed out.
Lacey nodded. ‘Yep. Me and Kevin...wait....Kevin and I were waiting in the lobby for you two, and then I was like ‘I wonder what’s taking those two skinny little weirdos so long’ and Kevin was all like ‘I’m really into Korean soap operas’ and I was like ‘no way, me too’ and then the thugs came out of nowhere and they tried to shoot us but we handled them. And by handling them, I mean Kevin took off his pants which scared the Thugs and I broke a chair over each of their heads.” She explained.
I tried not to picture Kevin with his pants off, but I was curious to where he was. And so was Dougman which prompted him to ask “so where is Kevin?”
“Well, now he’s running around the tenement with his pants off, distracting the other thugs. There is also the two guys who pulled up and began firing at the building from outside not too long ago. So since nobody was attacking me, I thought I’d go out and find some thugs to beat the intestines out of. That’s how I ended up here, surrounded by the people I just beat up.” Lacey concluded.
“Those two guys are probably Steve and Jim. They’re drawing the attention away from us so we can go and grab the bomb off of Box Turtle’s desk. They don’t realize that this is the plan, but it’s working out anyway, right? So let’s head over there, we should be on the same floor.” I said. Dougman seemed to agree with me which he rarely does and Lacey agreed mostly because it meant that she would probably get to punch the face off of someone if she did.
At that point the three of us were walking down the hallway with our guns by our side and youthful fire in our eyes. Lacey and Dougman followed behind me as I pushed down the hallway, with the intent of putting a bullet between Box Turtle’s eyebrows. “Those guys messed up big time by messing with us. Now it’s time they got theirs.” I said, flipping the safety off my pistol with my thumb.
Just then, one random thug turned the corner up at the end of the hall and spotted us. In a panic, his hand went straight for the handle of a gun sticking out of his pocket. I was quicker, and with a simple point of my pistol, I fired off three rounds in his direction. He fell to the ground, so I could assume at least one of those found their way into him. But it made me feel good; seeing that I could handle one thug that quickly. I guess now the tide had changed and we were in charge of the situation.
But of course I was wrong, because a second later, more thugs turned the corner, and they had their weapons in their hands. And when they saw us, they pointed their weapons, so I could only fire twice before turning and running. Neither shot hit, but it did startle them enough to not shoot just yet. Dougman fired off a round and also ran with me. Lacey wanted to fire at them but she didn’t have a gun so she went with what we had done. As soon as I turned the corner and backed against the wall, an eruption of gunfire crackled down the hallway. Dougman and Lacey just barely dodged those bullets when they turned the corner.
“Alright: band of angry thugs coming down the hallway with guns. What now?” Dougman asked.
I glanced down the hallway they weren’t coming through. “Uh...keep running.” I said before taking off.
“Are you...are you serious?” Dougman asked in disbelief. I was about halfway down the hall before he realized that I was serious. Lacey realized that sooner, which was why she was a meter behind me. Dougman took off after me, but he’s not that good a runner himself so I was worried he wouldn’t be able to outrun the thugs. So I opened the first door I could get my hands on and found myself in the stairwell. Being a normal person, I slowed down before proceeding to quickly clomp down the stairs. Lacey, who isn’t that bright, approached the top of the stairs full speed and ended up falling down them, landing in a crumpled heap at the bottom. But she just got up, manually popped her shoulder blade back into place, mumbled some stuff about health insurance, and ran out the open door at the bottom of the staircase.
I was halfway down the stairs when this happened, so I glanced up to see how Dougman was doing. He had just gotten in into the stairwell and had slammed the door shut. Several bullets punctured the metal door and just barely hit Dougman as he was running to the top, bent over to avoid the barrage. He was about to make the same mistake that Lacey made but he stopped himself, took a deep breathe, and clomped quickly down the stairs like a smart fleeing person should.
I get to the bottom and exit out the door to the next hallway. In the hallway, Lacey was standing at the intersection of another hallway, arguing with a guy wearing a big, bright red winter coat and a toboggan. “Listen, I was here first! You need to step to the side so I can make my way down the hallway.” The guy said.
“But I have the right-away because I’m not turning, I’m just going straight you poor excuse for a pedestrian!” Lacey argued.
“Lacey, what are you doing? Why are you arguing with this guy?” I asked.
Lacey pointing a finger right at his fat, dirty, eastern indonesian face. “I was coming down the hallway and I almost ran into him. Now he won’t move over so I can go past him.” Lacey explained.
“Dude, really? Ever heard the expression ‘ladies first?’ I mean, I can understand if you mistaken Lacey for Bostonian night-time Queen, but you need to show some courtesy.” I said.
He crossed his arms angrily. “Nope. Nu-huh. Not at all.” He muttered angrily.
“...Alright, I’ve had enough of this.” I said, pointing the pistol right at his face and firing.
Lacey scratched her head in confusion. “Oh...so that’s how you deal with those kinds of problems...” She said.
Dougman appeared from behind. “Hey guys, what’s going on?” He asked.
I shrugged. “Nothing, just a bit of an altercation.” I said.
“Well, you know, we should probably get a move on. I mean, the dudes with the guns are making their way down the stairs right now.” Dougman pointed out.
Dougman was correct, and I wanted to give him a hi-five and 20 dollars, but we needed to keep moving. So Lacey, Dougman, and I ran down the hallway, then we took a left, then a right, then another left. That’s when we ran smack into two guys coming our way. We ended up hitting the floor, landing hard on our backs. The initial shock made me forget what was going on for a split second. Then I realized that we must have run into Tobaggans, who were about to shoot at us if we didn’t get up before they did. So I summoned all my energy, jumped to my feet and pointed my weapon.
Apparently, they were quick too, because they did the same, and by the time I was up pointing my weapon, they were doing the same in my direction. But then I saw their faces. Now I’m a believer. Wait, sorry, weird reference. No, I saw their faces and I realized that they weren’t Tungsten Toboggan thugs.
“Yo, if it ain’t Red in the flesh! What’s going on, Homie?” Angry Steve asked.
“Steve! Jim! You guys came! We really needed your help here; you came right in the mike of time. Or is it the nick of time? I don’t recall...” I said.
“Yeah, we rolled up just as they were about to slash the tires on your beat up car. But luckily I managed to shoot them in the head before they could do any damage.” Angry Steve said.
“Steve! Good job! When we get home, you’re getting a gold star!” I exclaimed.
Steve smiled, showing off his row of coffee-stained teeth with three spots of silver fillings. Jumbo Jim wasn’t as joyful though. “Guys, this is serious. We are outnumbered and outgunned, we need to get out of here now.” He said.
“We can’t; they have the experimental bomb we need. I’ve lost too many opportunities to get explosives in the past two weeks and we don’t have much time left to find more. This is the key to the success of the Bank Heist; we need to get this thing tonight or else this heist isn’t happening.” Dougman explained.
“You guys got weapons, right? Well, if we push our way back up to the second floor, we can go to the armory where they have some heavier weapons. Then we gotta go to Box Turtle’s office to get the bomb. You got that?” I asked.
They calmly nodded, indicating that they got it. Lacey was looking down the hallway, and because she spotted the thugs emerging from behind the corner first, she was the first to say “perpetrators incoming!”
I turned around to see like 8 guys in a group at the end of the hall, guns in hand. With them was Nelson and Cinnamon Smack, staring wildly at us. “Yo Smack! There they are!” Nelson pointed out.
“Yeah but now it’s not just the Mormon, the weirdo and the hooker. They got that egg-headed black dude and that dumb redneck too!” Cinnamon Smack said.
“Did you say ‘red neck?’ Man, that ain’t no problem! All we gotta do is give him a math problem and his head will explode!” One guy joked. The others burst out in laughing, breaking the tension that hung in the air. They were laughing up a storm, dropping their guns and bending over. I glanced over at Jumbo Jim who was staring wide-eyed at them. I could see him was getting pretty mad.
“Yeah...like...like...we should say a big word and he’ll run in fear!” One guy said between laughs. Jumbo Jim’s eyes grew red and his jaw locked in place.
“Ah look guys! We made the big dumbo angry! Well you know what, dumbo? Think about this; what’s one plus one? What is it? Come on, you know, or do you?” Another guy taughted. Jumbo Jim snorted, which reminded me vaguely of a bull. Then he pointed his revolver at them, which caused them to stop laughing and pull back into reality. He fired off two shots, one of which hit Nelson in the neck and caused him to collapse. At that point, all the joking was over.
Cinnamon Smack got on his knees and grabbed Nelson by the arm. “Yo Nels! Man, stay with me bro! You can beat this!” he said, choking back a sob.
Nelson stared up at him through slowly closing eyes. “Dude...whenever you ...whenever you take a hit of some rad Donkey Tail...or...or....pound some Freshman 15...think of me...remember me...” he said before he passed on to the Great NightClub in the sky. At that point, everybody looked up and saw Jumbo Jim who was still pointing his revolver at them. He drew the hammer back with his thumb and fired off some more shots.
They broke up, some fleeing, some taking cover, some collapsing from the shots. The other 4 of us on Jim’s team got the idea and pointing our guns, firing them at the fleeing gangsters. Now that the tide had changed, and we were the ones who were making them run in terror, I wasn’t keeping track of my hits and kills. We were just firing off rapid, unaimed rounds down the hallway. Eventually, the guys who were hiding behind cover of the corner fled back upstairs with the others, leaving their dead comrades littering the floor.
We didn’t let up, of course. We chased after them. I lead the charge like I did before, moving down the hallway, taking the crew up the stairs, and then down the hallway towards the Boss’s office. We eventually found our way into this large room that had tables and boxes set up everywhere. This was where we had to stop because the thugs were now moving towards us, armed with heavier weapons. They were at the other side of the room, about 6 or so, and they were aiming their assault rifles and shotguns at us.
I stayed outside the room as Dougman, Lacey, and Steve ran in, flipping over tables and taking cover behind them on our side of the room. I turned to Jumbo Jim who was still seething with anger, but not moving. Instead he was just staring down at his revolver in his hands. “What’s the problem, man?” I asked, wondering what had stopped the unstoppable war machine he had become.
He grunted angrily, then said “...I’m out of rounds for gun...”
“Oh...uh...down the hall, to the right, there’s the armory. You’re bound to find something good in there.” I said. He calmly nodded and quickly waddled down the corridor. Meanwhile, my homies in the room were returning fire on the enemy position.
“Red! Get in here! We need you, bro!” Dougman shouted between shots fired from his carbine. I checked the clip of my pistol and slid it back in, allowing the slide of the gun to snap back into place. Then I entered the room just in time to see the vent on the ceiling fall down and hit the cold floor. Then a guy wearing a pair of swimming trunks, a Ninja mask, and nothing else jumped down. He waved a samurai sword in my face, saying “whoa whoa whoa! You have found yourself in the presence of the greatest modern day Ninja in America! I am Johnson-San; the great Shinobi of the West! Prepare yourself for...” He was saying before his comrades accidentally shot him repeatedly in the back.
He got blood everywhere, on the chairs, on the tables, and on the floor in puddles. Then he glanced down at the holes in his abdomen. “Oh...okay...well, shoot.” He said before falling to the ground.
I immediately realized that I needed to get behind cover before I ended up like that guy. So I ran straight to the overturned table in front of me.
I landed hard on the concrete ground, taking cover behind the flipped over table. A volley of bullets came out way, punching holes in the grey walls and flashing across the metal surface of the door. Suddenly the glass of the overhead light shattered and I covered my face from the falling debris.
Angry Steve reached over cover and fired blindly at the gangsters with his pistol. “We need to get out of here! We’ve got someone bleeding out over here!” Dougman shouted.
“Who?!” I shout back, just as another light shattered overhead.
Jumbo Jim ran in with an LMG and kicked over the bloody chair. He then stood on it and shouted “You all think you’re so smart; well guess what; here’s a math equation for ya! Me plus this gun equals what? That’s right! Your death!” he then proceeded to fire at the hip, unceasing as the gun belt flapped wildly and shells plumed out of the other side, raining down and splashing in the puddles of blood.
...Okay...I’ve told this part of the story already...alright...
So Jumbo Jim was tearing it up with his gun, causing the overturned tables and boxes at the other end of the room to splinter and fall apart. Several thugs got up in terror and tried to flee but fell victim to his slaughter. Now that all the thugs had either departed the room or life as we know it, there was a brief moment to catch our breath. I called out to Dougman. “Hey...I think they’re all dead...who is it that’s bleeding out?” I asked.
“Lacey got shot in the shoulder. She’s drenching the place.” Dougman replied.
“That is such an exaggeration, man! I’m not bleeding that much. I mean, I’ve been shot, yeah, but I can totally handle it.” She said.
When I went over to see what she meant, I realized that she really had been shot, but she wasn’t faring as well as she said she was. I cursed gently to myself; another work-related injury. So I had to shift gears a bit to figure out what to do. “Uh...okay. Jim, help her up; she can still keep going. Steve, I know I shouldn’t ask you to do this but... could you take off your shirt and bandage the wound?” I said.
Steve was pretty eager to do so; his shirt was already half off before I had finished the sentence. Being the southern gentleman he is, Jim helped Lacey up off the floor and helped her steady herself as Steve wrapped his white shirt around her bleeding arm. She winced a bit as he tightened the knot, but other than that she seemed to be okay. “Alright, we need to keep going. Box Turtle’s office should be just down the hallway. Come on!” I said as I went to the door at the other end of the room.
Jim walked with Lacey’s arm slung over his shoulder, helping her to the end of the room. Dougman and shirtless Steve (not a bad new nickname actually) followed me as I ran through the door into the hallway. I could see that not far up the corridor, there was a familiar door with chain link cage in front of it, where Dupo had been standing before. But when I saw who was standing there in his place, I stopped dead in my tracks.
There, in front of the door, was Cinnamon Smack. He was taking a cowboy stance, blocking the way, staring at us with this stupid smug look on his face.
We all pointed our weapons, which was what we had been doing every time we spotted someone who wasn’t a part of our little group. Well, Jim and Lacey couldn’t but that’s besides the point. I was about to shoot but then I saw that in his hand he had a grenade. At that point, everybody else saw it. Dougman gasped and Steve yelped in fear. “Holy...sandwich robots...is that a grenade? Where did you get a grenade?” I murmured.
He chuckled. “Well you can pretty much buy anything on Ebay nowadays. Anyway, that’s besides the point. The point is; I’m gonna kill ya. and I’m gonna kill ya with this here grenade. And it don’t matter if you shoot me because I’m wearing body armor and even if you shoot me enough to shoot through the armor, I’ll still have enough time to throw this. So mathematically speaking...you’re screwed, home cat!” He said, pulling the pin out of the grenade.
Now, in most situations people would probably panic right at this point. Like how Steve had already dropped his gun and screamed like an old jewish lady, or like how Dougman had already peed himself a little bit. But I kept a cool head, and I knew I could beat this.
Cinnamon Smack pulled back his arm, ready to lob the grenade. “When you get to Bell, go to Room 4B and tell my Momma I loved her and that I’m taking good care of those 3 dollars she loaned me four years ago!” He said.
“Hey Smack!” I called out.
“What is it man? Can’t you see I’m about to lob this live grenade at you?” Smack asked, slightly irritated.
“Your shoe is untied.” I said.
He lowered his arm and glanced down at this shoes. “Man...my shoes aren’t untied. Open yo eyes, you-” he said right as the grenade went off in his hand.
I was smart enough to step behind Steve as the wave of dust hit us. Then of course the splash of blood that hit everybody but me. Dougman made this unintelligible noise that sounded like someone was pulling apart the jaws of a baby crocodile. Steve on the other hand just flailed his arms in the air and buzzed his lips wildly. Jumbo Jim and Lacey were a bit cooler about it though. Jim glanced over at Lacey and said “Hey...you okay?”
She calmly nodded. “...Yeah...yeah I think I am...” She said.
“...You’ve got blood on your face.” He pointed out.
She glanced over at him. “...You do too...” She pointed out.
With his free hand, he pulled out a handkerchief and gently wiped the blood off her cheeks. Why, you ask? Because Jim is a southern Gentleman; it’s what he’s supposed to do. Anyway, that’s not the focus of this chapter. So I looked over Steve’s shoulder and saw what remains of Cinnamon Smack, which wasn't much as you can probably assume. There was a big scorch mark in the floor with several large chunks of unidentifiable meat lying around in crimson puddles, but his two shoes somehow survived the blast; don’t ask me how that worked. Thankfully the door to Box Turtle’s office had been blown off it’s hinges.
“Alright, push on troops!” I said, rushing ahead.
“Hold on! I haven’t completely recovered from the trauma of that yet!” Steve said as he ran forward to catch up.
Dougman made an angry groaning noise before he ran forward as well.
I rushed into the room and pointed my weapon in the direction of the desk. Now, I soon realize that it was not occupied which was a let down because I expected Box Turtle to be here. It's like the final level of a 1990s video game and the Big Boss is always where you expect him to be; in his room or lair or whatever. But Box Turtle was no where to be found. Actually, the room wasn't much different from how we left it last, only now there was a door in the middle of the floor. But one thing that at least brightened my day a little bit was the bomb sitting on the desk with a little red bow on it.
Steve ran in and pointed his gun. “Ya’ll have a right to remain silent! Anything you say will be mimicked in a high pitched voice by me and....hold on...there ain’t nobody in here...” He said.
Dougman ran in and saw that as well. “Where the cluck did Box Turtle go? He was supposed to be here!” He pointed out.
Jumbo Jim and Lacey both walked in at that point. “Well, you know, maybe he had like a secret hatch or something...” Lacey pointed out.
“Or he could still be hiding in the building somewhere.” Jim noted.
“Really? Like where? We’ve pretty much killed everybody in the building but him by now, and Marcy would have notified me if he had escaped at all. But where could he possibly be that’s not in this room?” I asked out loud.
You know how sometimes the answer to a problem is way simpler and closer to you than you think? Well, that happened in this situation too because just then, I saw the bathroom door at the back of the room behind Jumbo Jim open up. Emerging from it was the man we were looking for, and he was holding a lead pipe. Before poor Jim even knew what was about to happen, Box Turtle hit him in the back of the head with it, knocking him to the floor. Lacey, who couldn’t stand up on her own also fell with him, making a sudden yelp of surprise.
“Holy barcelona!” Dougman shouted as he pointed his weapon. Turns out, in his other hand, Box Turtle had a pistol, which he proceeded to aim and fire at Dougman’s calf before Dougman had a chance to fire. Dougman let out another one of his signature squeals of pain before falling back.
Steve panicked and fired at Box Turtle, missing each shot even as Box Turtle had dropped the pipe and was coming at him with a fist. He punched Steve right in his cheek, causing him to fall back and hit his head on the cabinet behind him, knocking him out.
I had my pistol pointed at Box Turtle as well through this, and I must have pulled the trigger at least 8 times before I realized that I had been out of ammo since the last time I shot someone at least 3 minutes ago. So I dropped the clip and went to my belt for another one but when I looked up, all I could see was Box Turtle’s fist coming at me, and it hit me pretty hard right in the nose, which is never a fun place to get hit.
So I went down, falling flat on my back on the carpeted floor. Box Turtle, who was hyped up due to the fact that he was on a roll, won’t let up. He got down and he punched me in the gut, which caused me to produce an involuntary grunt of pain. “Yeah...yeah, you like that white boy? You want some more of that?” He asked rhetorically (atleast I think he did, what did he expect me to say?)
He reached over and grabbed a lava lamp off a shelf. Then as I was trying to get up, he smashed it over my head, exerting another spike of pain. I fell back down, and as I was mustering up the strength to get up again, he reached for a fake beer bottle and smashed it on my head. Now, I know it was fake because then he grabbed a real beer bottle off the shelf and smashed it on my head after that, and I could totally feel the different.
Now, I was in a kind of pain that you can’t really describe properly in writing without sounding cheesy, but you can just assume it wasn't pleasant. Now he decided to do a blow to my ego, and he did so by grabbing a rubber chicken from the shelf and smacking me with it. That was the worst part of it for me; because I can handle having a bottle of beer shattered on my forehead, and maybe a lava lamp, but a rubber chicken is a whole other story.
So I was just lying there on my back, wet, aching all over, staring up at Box Turtle with dreary eyes. He had figured that he’d made his point, and I could see that based on that smirk of satisfaction on his face. So it was time for him to give his winning speech. “Yeah, you all thought you could handle real crime. You thought you could tussle with a real gangster. Listen here, graham cracker. You ain’t shaving cream and you never will be. I am a real OG, and OG actually stands for Olive Grabber. I like to grab olives. But that’s not important right now. I’m just here to tell you that nobody comes to Box Turtle’s house and thinks he can gun down Box Turtle in his own abode. With that being said, I think this business transaction is over.” He said.
He pointed his pistol at me, staring down at me over the sight. “Audios, Letros Rojos.”
When someone is pointing a gun at me, that’s normally the focus of my vision. And my eyes were already pretty blurry from the pain and the lava lamp juice. But I spotted out of the corner of my eye something moving. Someone had just entered the room, and was moving directly toward Box Turtle from behind. And though the guy was completely naked below the neck, I recognized that hat from anywhere.
It was Kevin Strokehard in the flesh, and that was it.
He jumped on Box Turtle from behind, wrapped his arms around the guy’s neck, and shouted “nightmare time!”
Box Turtle screamed and fired his pistol randomly at the ceiling. “Aahh! Who the cluck is that!?” he screamed as he grabbed at his back, desperately trying to unhinge the frat bro who was very stubbornly hanging on. He began stomping around, trying to shake off the guy and leaving me with enough time to get my act together. I also saw that right by me he had dropped his pistol. My vision was still blurry so I found it hard to see, but as I was reaching for it, I could feel the warmth and the smoothness of the grip and I wrapped my fingers around it. I pointed it in the direction of Box Turtle who was now frantically screaming as a naked man had his arms wrapped around his neck and was hanging limp behind him.
He was moving around too much, and for a second I didn’t want to shoot because I was worried I’d hit Kevin. But then Box Turtle got one good grip on Kevin, pulled him off, and threw him down. “Yeah! That’s whatcha get, ya butt naked weirdo! I...oh...” Box Turtle said as he glanced over at me, seeing the gun I was pointing the gun right at him.
Now that there were no risks, there was no reason not to take the shot. So I did. And it couldn’t have been a more beautiful moment. Crimson splattered across the wall behind him, his legs kicked up but his back arched sideways, causing him to do like a sideways flip. Then he landed on the back of his neck and the rest of him just came crashing down on top of him. All that happened in the time span of 2 seconds, and I remember it like it was half a minute of me watching it with awe.
Box Turtle hit the floor, and that was it for him. And as far as I knew, everybody in the building was down except for me and my team. At that point, I heard Marcy’s voice on the phone in my pocket. She was saying something but I couldn’t hear it because she was being muffled by my pants cotton. So I pulled it out and placed it against my ear. “Y...yeah?” I asked, wiping the lava lamp juice from my forehead.
“...Red? Are you there? Are you okay? I was trying to reach you but you weren’t answering...” Her sweet voice said.
“Uh...yeah...don’t worry, I had to deal with Box Turtle for a minute...”
“Really? So I’m guessing you took care of him. What about the bomb?” she asked.
After a soft groan, I helped myself up off the ground and surveyed the desk. I could see the Angry Baby Bomb sitting there on the corner, and as I reached out and felt the cold metal exterior, I realized that this was the first time I could actually touch the thing we had been looking for for at least three weeks at this point. “The Bomb is right here. We did it Marcy, we got it...” I said.
At that point I noticed the sound of someone else groaning softly but angrily. I turned around to see Dougman up against the wall, clutching his leg and groaning in pain. “Oh yeah...he shot you didn’t he?” I asked.
Dougman glanced up at me with angered eyes, though the inferno in the orbs was softer than it usually was. He seemed more tired than anything. “Yeah...it’s not that big a deal...I’ve been shot before.” He pointed out. He had, and in that same place too. Steve had already donated his shirt to Lacey so I decided it was time I pitched in on that front. So I took off my shirt and gave it to Dougman to tie around his leg.
At that point, Steve, Kevin, and Jim had woken up from there temporary concussion-infused hiatus. Steve got up and rubbed his head. “Owh...man, that’s the last time I get knocked on my bass by someone with a really stupid name like that. Who the Bell would think that ‘Box Turtle’ is a cool name for a gangster? Where did he even come up with that?” He asked.
Kevin got up and readjusted his hat. “Yep...I sure taught him a lesson; always watch your back.” He said.
Steve saw Kevin in his fullness and gasped. “Boy...you ain’t wearing any clothes. Why are you not wearing any clothes? Did you go from Frat bro to Streaker in one night?” Steve inquired.
“Naw man, it’s just that I’ve noticed that the best way to intimidate someone is to bring down all barriers and really take them on at level one. Of those barriers include clothes.” he explained. Steve still didn’t quite get it but he pretended he did so he wouldn’t look stupid.
Lacey tried to get Jim off the ground, but he didn’t seem to want to get up. “Come on man, the fight’s over! Get up!” She said.
“I...I just want to rest for a bit...come back in like 5 minutes, I’ll be ready to take on the world...” Jim muttered while still on the ground.
I glanced over at Lacey and saw her up and about, despite the wound in her shoulder. “Lacey...aren’t you still hurting from the wound?” I asked.
She shook her head. “It’s healing pretty quickly...well, no it isn’t actually. But it stopped bleeding for the most part and I’m pretty good at ignoring searing pains in my shoulder. I trained myself to ignore pain from meditation and also constantly inflicting harm on myself when I was 12.” She said.
“That’s...nice. Kevin, do you need to borrow some clothes? I’m sure you can take some off of Box Turtle. He doesn’t really need them anymore.” I said.
“Naw, I’m good.” he said, leaning back a bit, taking the “who gives a shaving cream” stance which is popular among kids these days. I hadn’t really meant it as a suggestion so much as an order, but at that point I was too tired to be confrontation, so I just went back to talking to Marcy.
“Okay, we’ve got the Bomb. I think we’ll head back home now. I’ll take Lacey and Steve back to my Flat in my car and Dougman will take Jim and Kevin home in whatever it was that they came here with. I’m definitely not going to drive in a car with a naked Kevin in the back, that’s for sure.” I said.
“So wait...you want me to take him now? Do you think I’d like to be cooped up with a naked Kevin any more than you would?” He asked.
I wasn’t listening to him though, which isn’t unusual for me. I was thinking; we had a hacker, some weapons, some new watches and burner phones, two new henchmen, some body armor, and now we had a bomb. It had all fallen into place. The list was pretty much complete. So after a moment of thinking, I glanced back at Dougman.
“Hey...Dougman...you know what this means, right?” I asked.
“What? What does what mean?” Dougman asked.
“I’m pretty sure ‘what’ is a form of speech you use when you’re trying to gather information on a specific topic. Like if you were to ask ‘what time is it.’” Kevin pointed out.
“That’s not what I meant. And...Kevin...please put some clothes on. Please.” He said.
“I mean the fact that we got the bomb. You know what that means, right?” I asked.
“Does it mean we can go out to the Taco Barn and get some chalupas in celebration?” Steve asked.
“No! Actually...well, no I think Taco Barn is closed on Saturday. But that’s not the point. The point is; we got everything! Everything that was on the list!” I said.
Jumbo Jim’s eyes kinda lit up a bit. “Do you really mean it? Everything?” He said.
I nodded and smiled. “We got it. The man power, the fire power, the equipment, and all we need is another plan. So you know what that means, right?” I asked.
I could see that Dougman was catching on, and Jim seemed to understand too. But Steve still wasn’t sure. “...No. No actually, what does that mean?” He asked.
Now, because I felt this was a climactic moment, I pretended there was a camera right next to me. So I turned and looked right into it, savoring the moment. Then I said it. “I think we’re ready to pull off the Heist. And we’re gonna do it right this time.”