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What Happened to Whatshername? Part 1: No Sleep til Phoenix


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#1 The Rookie

The Rookie

    I like it on Omicron Ceti III, Jim

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Posted 04 January 2011 - 11:44 PM

The Vegas strip seems to be the place where I should be. I’ve become broken down person who has allowed ever semblance of her humanity to slowly wither away and die. Your classic deadly sins all in display in one place as every form of debauchery is enacted in front of our very eyes. I take a drag from my cigarette as I contemplate how much I hate it here and how relieved I am that I’m leaving tomorrow. My little trail of destruction has led me to a dead end which I loathed.

As I get up to walk away from Belagio Fountains a bunch of frat guys start walking up to me. I know their type, former high school football “all stars” who couldn’t get scholarships because they discovered beer at age sixteen and proceeded to get beer guts at age seventeen. They’d harass you for being a freak but they secretly wanted you. It was some sick goth fetish born from surfing internet porn sites so much to the point where anything vanilla stopped turning them on.

I always thought that was the reason why two girls one cup got popular.

Their alpha frat douche walks up to me, upturned collar and white hate flipped backwards. The stench of overpriced booze and red bull comes off his breath as he tries to talk to me. He leans over, eyeing my fishnets. I push the bat against his chin.

“Don’t *vulgarity* me with me tonight?”

“Aw look, Suicide Girl thinks she’s tough ‘cos she has a bat.” The goons start to give me that look I’d imagine they’d give to a poor little blonde sorority girl who they’ve cornered.

“I don’t think it, I know it!” I swing my bat as it cracks along the wrist of the head frat boy. He’s crying already like a little girl as his biggest friend, some tall greasy fatso with a bad goatee takes a swing at me. I duck under it quickly and send my back cracking along his head. The small trickle of blood runs down his face as he slumps to his knees and drops to the floor. Around us tourist are screaming, kids with smartphones are taking videos. No doubt I’ll have a million views on youtube before this night is over. I hear the sirens blare, the familiar flashing of blue and red lights along the pavement as I put my hands up and drop my bat onto the ground.

“You have the right to remain silent. Anything you do or say will…”

The words trail off in my ear as I’m numb to them. In fact I don’t even feel the cuffs go around my wrist, the nudge of the night stick against my ribs. I don’t pay attention to the ruff pull on my shoulder or the lady cop calling me a *vulgarity* for the clothes I’m wearing. I’m sick of all this. All of this to find the man who made me this way and nothing to show for it except for a couple of cops bringing the wrong person into prison. I see the two frat boys get helped into the ambulance yet I’m the one being shoved into the cop car. Real nice world we live in isn’t it?

#


“Can I have another coffee?” I shook my little Styrofoam cup against my holding cell bars as the officer snatched it from me.

“You’re lucky you beat up some frat punk. Chief hates those guys.”

“Doesn’t everybody? Stupid Ed Hardy shirts.”

Of all the places I figured I’d end up in I never thought it’d be in here. Shallow ditch, trunk of a car, bottom of the Grand Canyon all seem likely. But the cops? This is just embarrassing. I got sloppy though. I did the one thing Officer Raines told me not to do; let my emotions get the better of me. My anger was a weapon and like any weapon it needs to be use properly. I truly effed up last night didn’t I?

I figured I’d be spending the night there but I kept over hearing some of the conversations the officers were having. Surveillance tapes, the Love Stud ranch, murder charges. Criminals’ going to the police, so this is what it’s come to hasn’t it? My heart starts beating as I realize that I may have messed up more than I had ever thought. If I get charged it’s only going to be the death sentence waiting for me.

My sense of dread finally washes over me as I look out at the officers talking and doing their paper work when suddenly the door burst open. A man dressed up as Santa Claus suit carry a sack comes bursting in. He’s stumbling around a bit and even from here I can smell the booze. Great, I just may have to spend the night here with a drunken old fart.

One of the officers walked up to the drunken Santa as he said “ok buddy, don’t know why someone let you in here without an escort but you’re going to need to take the suit off.”

“Oh but... but little boy... hiccup... I have... I have a present for you,” the Santa was wobbling, almost a little too much as the officer tried to calm him down.

“Look unless it’s some of that bourbon I smell on you I don’t want it,” he and his fellow officers started to laugh.

“Believe me I think you’ll like it!”

“You’re a week late there gramps but fine show it to me if it means we can get you out of those ridiculous clothes and into that cell.”

“Oh believe me I think you’ll enjoy this,” the man in the suit reached in his bag and pulled out a shotgun as he blasted the officer over a desk with a hot blast of buckshot. He quickly reloaded his gun as he aimed at the lady officer who called me a *vulgarity* earlier.

“Ho ho ho don’t be a naughty girl there!” Santa aimed his shotgun at her arm as she screamed when the slugs hit it. She crawled on the ground pathetically as Santa pulled out a Katana blade from his sack.

“I’m going to go Kill Bill on all your asses.”

The officers were pretty shocked at Santa’s agility as they scrambled to grab their pistols. Santa leapt over a desk and slashed cutting off one man’s arm, then another before the rest began to retreat. Santa grabbed the keys and started to unlock my cell.

“Hurry up little girl before the heavy fire power gets here.” An alarm was already blaring as I walked over and grabbed my bat. I looked down at the lady officer who made fun of her earlier tonight and said “payback’s a bitch isn’t it.” I kicked her in the gut, kicked her again, stomping on her chest before Santa had to pull me off. As we exited I noticed the police station was quiet and filled with dead bodies. It seemed Santa had done his work prior to making it to the cell. We quickly exited the building to an old Volvo and drove out of Last Vegas southwards.

I stuck my head out the window of the old boat of a car as the man in the Santa suit kept driving. His eyes were fixated on the road. He kept to the right and drove no more than a mile over the speed limit. I smiled at him and asked “should I even bother asking who you are?” Part of me didn’t care. Life has been so weird since the incident that Santa clause springing me from jail seemed about as normal as things could get.

The man coughed as he tried to pull the beard off his face and soon I recognized who it was. The gruff expression and greying temples could only mean it was Officer Raines. He tossed the beard out the window as we slowly moved along the I93.

“You know you just got Shinobi Claus into a lot of shit for that stunt back there.”

Raines smiled as he said “he’s got an alibi, they’ll rough him up a little but he’ll be set free.”

There was a short moment of silence as we drove through the desert. I leaned out the window and sighed. Raines was good at knowing when to talk to me and when to leave me the hell alone. He also knew about my own little voracious appetite as my belly rumbled a little. The next diner we saw we pulled into.

#

“Good eggs?” I asked as I sipped my coffee and picked at piece of cherry pie. It might seem stupid to come into here but if there’s one thing you learn from travelling is that at Diners like these people keep to themselves. It’s all a bunch of drifters and low lives and travellers who don’t give a rat’s ass about what happens in the “real” world. I swear on the old dingy radio I even heard the new describe us fully. No one batted an eye when they looked our way.

Raines was dipping his brown toast into extra runny egg yolks as he talked with his mouth full. “They’re delightful. The cook here knows how to make perfect greasy runny eggs. However you want to know what’s on my mind Penelope, ‘cos it ain’t the eggs.”

I rolled my eyes as I asked in a mocking tone “ok Raines. What’s on your mind?

“I want to know why you thought it was a good idea to break the wrists of someone who wasn’t one of the people I provided to you in a crowd on the Vegas strip with cops crawling all over the place? Seriously it’s like you’re spitting on everything I’m trying to do for you here! You know what’s at stake here Penelope? My job! They think right now that my kid is getting his appendix out right now! Believe me it’s not easy to find or wear a Kevlar fat suit.”

I sighed whole I crushed the crust of my pie into the cherry filling, swirling it into a strange gelatine mush of pastry and fruit. “Look I’m just a little frustrated what with everything turning out cold. I beat up every scum bag in the city, found the ranch and beat the shit out of Arty and now nothing. Torrance is in Phoenix and we have no clue where or if he’s even going to be there long enough for me to find him and beat the living shit out of him.”

Raines started cutting into his bacon as he looked down at his plate and not at Penelope while he spoke. “You never though once to touch base with me did you?”

I pulled out a cigarette and started to light it. “Now why would I go and do that? You’re the one who sent me on this crazy chase.”

“You sent yourself I provided you the means. And there’s a reason why I’ve been making you keep me up to speed about what you found. It’s because I can find things you can’t. One because I have greater access to other resources than you, two because you’re on the road and for the most part I’m stuck behind a desk and three I’m the brains of this operation.”

After a quick drag from my smoke I turned my nose up a little. He always said he was the one who masterminded all of this and it made me sick whenever he reiterated it. I put my cigarette out on my plate as I leaned over and asked “so what did you get?”

He pulled out a crumpled piece of paper from inside his red suit as he laid it on the table. “I started looking up those contacts you gave me with Arty’s phone. Cross referenced it with the sign in books you got from the ranch. It was a little hard to decipher everything what with everyone who checks in using pseudonyms but I was able to figure a few out. Seems sickos and criminals are the most imaginative bunch and use the same one everywhere they go.”

“So what did you end up finding out?”

“This man,” Raines showed the photocopied police profile of one Darvy Trent. “Known aliases include Demented Darvy and at one VD clinic John Tijuana. How funny is that?”

I wasn’t impressed, if anything this seemed pretty typical of Raines to show me the face of another low life. “So you want me to bash his head in and let him squeal what miniscule information he has on Torrance like I’ve done to a dozen other scumbags?”

“Hardly, even I have to admit that I messed up on sending you on this trail. Now Darvy here isn’t a simple acquaintance of our friend Torrance. No these two sick bastards definitely have a tighter bond. If you checked that guest book you’d see John Tijuana has been there many times with a one Mike Deleware, a known used alias of Torrance Woodrow. These two see each other as kindred spirits and I’m sure that when they were there they ordered something ‘special’ from the Ranch,” Raines’ grin was wide as I tried not to throw up my own cherry pie.

“So if these two are so tight how does this make this different?”

“Penelope we’ve been going about this the wrong way. You don’t chase a predator. You trap it with the proper bait and motivation.”

“I’m listening.”

“Darvy lives in Phoenix but where you’ll find him usually is outside of Kingman Arizona. It’s a little off the beaten path but I got you a map. I’ll drive you there but you’ll need to find your own way out to his second home.”

I didn’t like the way Raines said “second home.”

#

It was a trailer underneath some old hydro towers that stood in front of me. From the clues I had gathered it was affectionately called “the Fun House.” As I walked closer to it the very structure sent a chill down my spine. I didn’t know quadruple wide trailers existed though upon closer inspection it was four old trailers bolted and fused together. A strange odour emitted from the frankentrailer as I slowly crept around it. Every window was boarded up and withering flowers were growing all around it.

I walked around till I found a metal door with a small wooden ramp way leading to it. Slowly walking up I could hear the old wood creak under my feet. “So much for the stealthy approach,” I muttered to myself as I grabbed the knob and tried to turn it. Locked, obviously, I take a step back and grab my bat, swinging it over my head smashing it down on the knob. Dented and broken but still on, I keep smashing the bat into it over again and again until I break it clean off. After fiddling with the lock for a moment I step back and kick the door open. A terrible smell now wafts in the air as I almost gag from it, using my bat to keep me on my feet for a moment before I step into the trailer.

It wasn’t as disgusting as I thought it’d be. In fact there was more of a sinister cleanliness to the place that creeps me out. All the furniture and fixtures had been gutted out and sections seem to have been sectioned off with hanging translucent plastic shower curtains. I pass by these sections and see various things that set them apart, a pair of ground shackles, a strange thick raised metal bar with ankle restraints, something that can only be described as a metal gymnastics horse with ropes all around it. I can see why these sickos call it the Fun House.

As I explore deeper into the trailer I hear the faint sound of breathing. Taking my bat I push aside one plastic curtain as I come upon a double up section of the trailer. Inside it were two girls. The first was strapped to a doctor’s examination table. She barely had her underwear on as her body looked bruised and battered. The duct tape gag over her mouth muffled her pleads for help.

The other girl was laying back unconscious and naked in a modified dentist chair. I walked up to her and prodded her with my bat. She started to stir awake as I tore her own duct tape gag from her mouth as she started to breathe heavily.

“Oh... oh god help us!”

I gave her a serious stare as I said “I will, but I need to find the man who did this to you first. Do you know where he is?”

“He... he went out to get some medicine for our injuries. God this guy is sick.”

As I was about to ask more I heard the muffled screams of the other girl. I could only think it meant one thing as I turned around to see the barrel of a shotgun at me. Behind it was one of those guys in high school who was dead set on being a mechanic; his former muscle-fat had turned into fat-fat. He sweated profusely and he still had that buzzcut from grade nine. I pulled the end up my bat upwards and to the left as I knocked the barrel back before he took the shot. The ceiling suddenly leaked sunlight down on us as I went to pull my bat back for a mighty swing. He let go of his shotgun with one hand as he swung at me with a back handed slap as I spun away from him holding my cheek.

As he looked me over he chuckled at me. “You’re very pretty. Going to make a fine corpse for me do some nasty things to.”

“Believe me you’re hardly the first guy to make that promise to me.”

He pulled his shotgun up again and took a shot I barely dodged as the buckshot ripped through one of the plywood boards covering the window. The air filled with large flecks of broken wood as I dashed right through it. Swinging my bat I hit him right in his tree trunk like leg as he howled in pain. Reeling back he fell and tangled himself up in one of the plastic curtains before falling onto the ground.

As he struggled in the plastic I lifted my bat up and started battering his body as he screamed within it. I waited till he poked his head out before I grabbed the bottom of my bat and speared the tip right into his throat. Holding it there as I screamed at him “you’re going to do as I say Darvy!”

He managed to pull his hand free and flipped me the middle finger. “Bite me you crazy psycho bitch!”

“You’d like that wouldn’t you you sick freak.” I pulled the bat off his throat as I lifted it high in the air again, slamming it down this town right between his legs as he let out an almost hiss of a scream. He curled up in a ball as I shoved my thick soled boots against his cheek.

“*vulgarity*... you... whore!”

“Not the right answer Darvy.”

I lifted my bat high up again and swung for the jewels as he screamed a full on scream this time. Rolling around entangling himself further in plastic as my boot now slipped over his throat choking him. His eyes were closed from the pain as his face began to change from red to purple. I smiled down at him as I asked “got something nice to say this time?”

“Oh... yes... fine I’ll help you... please just stop.”

“Good let’s get this ready.”

#

I freed the girls but as I did they stared at me as if they were as scared of me as they were of Darvy. I grabbed blankets for them and tossed them one of my spare cell phones.

“Walk north till you hit the back road then follow along it to the main street. Call the cops to pick you up but don’t tell them about here till you get back to the station. Make some bullshit up about being too traumatized to talk yet.” Looking at their eyes it wouldn’t be bullshit at all.

As the girls made their way out of the trailer I looked over at Darvy. I shackled him to the floor as he slumped over still heaving in pain as I grabbed his own cell phone and tossed it at him.

“God what do you want me to do?”

“You know Torrance Woodrow right?”

Darvy shook his head and laughed “I knew being friends with that *vulgarity*er would get me in trouble.”

“Call him, tell him you got some new goods and you want to meet him at your house in Phoenix.”

“And you’ll let me go?”

“Yes.”

Darvy picked up the phone and flipped it open turning on the speaker phone.

“*vulgarity* Darvy it’s eleven in the morning you know I don’t wake up this early.” Penelope’s eyes widen as she heard Torrance talk tough he seemed to be using some sort of scrambler as his voice sounded tinny and garbled.

“Yeah but you know I wouldn’t call if you I got the goods.”

“The goods? Asians?”

“Little brown skin Thai girls just the way you like it.”

“You truly are my best friend Darvy.”

“Yeah I need you to meet me at the house in Phoenix.”

“The house? Isn’t that a little risky to do it in the city? Why can’t we use the trailers?”

“Sorry friend I already have a few bitches in here,” as he said that he shot Penelope a look. “You know me I get overzealous sometimes and you can’t have too many bitches in the Funhouse. They start scrapping or go lezzie on you and that’s no good.”

“Well you’re the expert on these things. My dad doesn’t have anything slated for me this evening can we meet then? Maybe grab some Thai and then eat some Thai if you know what I mean.”

Darvy’s fake laugh was hardly convincing to Penelope but it didn’t seem to make Torrance think twice about what was going on. “Ok funny guy see you at eight ok. Use the back entrance.”

The cellphone clicked as Darvy looked up at Penelope. “We done here?”

“I am, thanks.” Penelope started to make her way to the door as Darvy screamed out.

“Hey *vulgarity* you said you’d let me out!”

Penelope turned back and said “yah I *vulgarity*ing lied. Sorry about that.”

“You bitch! What if I need to eat or take a piss or...”

Penelope held her bat to Darvy’s chin as she said “exactly.”

As she walked away from the trailer the most horrible cursing was emitted from it. Whether the cops came by or if Darvy was to be left for dead she didn’t care. She now was a few hours away from destroying Torrance Woodrow.




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