Strength from Strength
Enhanced Strength: superior
When the limo drove up to my house there wasn't some promise of a better life or a prince bringing me his chariot delusions of grandeur fed to me. I've known about this day for a very long time. The one thing my mother did that I appreciated was the fact that she never lied to me. Honesty was our policy and I thank her for allowing truth to be the glue that held us together. I didn't question my mother when she had hand selected my most beautiful dress or did my make up to give me that allure I usually lacked when I left the house in my t-shirt and jeans. I was a beautiful pet being primed and primped before spending the rest of my life in a cage.
The limo drove along the strip which was odd because despite being a native of this city I never really spent much time here. I watched the fluorescent lights of the big casinos pass by as I sort of fell into an odd trance. The once discernible signs and marquees quickly turned into a swirl of colors that meshed into one on a backdrop of dark night sky. My body was growing numb as I realized the fate that was coming for me.
Sitting with me was a little fellow by the name of Nigel. He talked on and on about Diamondback and his conquests both legitimate and illegal. I tried so hard to tune him out because the feeling in the pit of my stomach was growing. I felt like I wanted to throw up but I hadn't eaten since yesterday morning. The silence in my head was broken when Nigel finally turned to me and said "by the way happy birthday. I don't know if anyone has said that to you yet."
"Thank you" I replied as I turned back to ignoring poor Nigel and looking at the lights.
At the end of the strip was a newly built gaudy piece of work. A Casino that was vaguely themed as a science fiction location. It looked like a relic of the 50's idea of the future, all rounded rooms, cold steel and even a pair of tesla coils that fired up as we passed by them. I looked around and for some reason security was light. I kept my eyes peeled as I noticed barely anyone was stirring about the casino.
"We haven't officially opened yet. We've had a few soft launch parties but we're still hiring" Nigel told me as he noticed me looking around.
"And don't ask how I knew what you were thinking. I have a knack for that."
Nigel led me to an elevator while the two guards waited at the ground floor taking a stance at either side of the doors. "These are the special VIP elevators. Only one, will be guarded 24/7 and the lowest floor you can access is the fortieth. Shall we go to the Penthouse or do you need to freshen up?"
"Let's get this over with."
Nigel muttered under his breath about my lack of manners as we were shot up through the elevator. A glass wall showed the city of Las Vegas as I tried to control my breathing. My chest was heaving as I could feel Nigel's creepy gaze stare at my cleavage. As soon as the elevator stopped and the doors opened I felt a rush, a mix of anxiety, anxiousness, fear and anticipation. Nigel led me down the hall as he opened the twin doors into the penthouse.
"Diamondback, I present to you Ms. Taylor Larsen."
In front of me was not the man I was expecting. He was tall, tanned, silver haired slicked back and only showing enough wear on his body to make him look distinguished instead of looking old. Imaging him eighteen years younger made me realize why my mother had fallen for him. He was dressed in a suit that fit him perfectly as he stepped forward, his hands on my shoulder.
"Well aren't you a fine specimen? Please have a seat."
"I'd rather stand."
Nigel interjected as he said "it seems Miss Taylor hasn't been taught proper manners."
Diamondback shot a look at Nigel as he said "like I give a fuck. Go wait outside."
Nigel left the room as Diamondback kept looking at me up and down. "Well seems your mother kept her end of the bargain. A little more muscular definition then I personally like but hey, better fit than fat am I right?"
Diamondback slowly walked up to my, his hand gliding across my belly, up past my breasts before holding my chin as he forced me to look up into his eyes. "The question is this though. Do I sell you off? Make a pretty profit on an untouched work of art such as yourself. Or do I take you, a half million dollar prize easily for free. It's hard to decide when I look into those eyes." His lecherous stare caused my soul to burn as I reached up and grabbed his hand.
"How about neither?"
Diamondback shook his head as she said "I don't think you get how this works Taylor."
"No, I don't think you get it." As I gripped his hand I started to squeeze his fingers together, his laughing turning to a scream as I heard the joints and tiny bones snap in my grip before I shoved him to the ground.
"You little bit....." I stopped Diamondback mid sentence as I grabbed his throat, feeling the squishy windpipe constrict in my fingers as I lifted him up and slammed him down had onto the ground, causing him to roll away as I stalked him.
"My mother informed me of this day since I was six. As I grew up I realized there would be two things I could choose. Accept the shitty cards that were dealt with me or pull a bluff and reap the rewards. You think you're so strong but I've been preparing twelve years
Diamondback. I've been looking forward to it as much as you have."
I grabbed him by his collar and the waist line of his suit pants as I lifted him over my head, walking towards the floor to ceiling glass window of the penthouse as he struggled in my grip. I listened to him beg and plead for his life as I shouted like a hell cat, sending his body careening through the glass as it shattered with him desperately reaching out for some way to stop the sixty story drop.
Strength from Speed
Enhanced Agility: superior
As I watched Diamondback fall into the darkness I felt the weight that was on my shoulders suddenly fly off. Was this freedom? I wasn't sure what it was but the feeling was fleeting as I heard the doors burst open. Nigel, I didn't see him but I knew it was him as I quickly ran a few steps before diving behind the bar of the penthouse suite. The rapid fire of bullets rang out as I knew that there were still loose ends to deal with.
Nigel screamed out "come out! And tell me what you did to Diamondback."
I laughed and said "he does out by the pool, went for a dive."
The blaze of gun fire rang out again as I quickly dove over the bar, my feet pushing into the marble floor as I weaved my head to doge another rain of fire before I swung my fist out, knocking out some of Nigel's teeth as I watched him fall the ground. As he reached for his gun I stomped on his throat, pushing my spiked heel into his trachea as he stared up at me.
"You're not getting of here alive!"
I listened to the horrible gurgle coming out of Nigel's throat as he threw his gun out, firing up at me as I felt the bullet pierce through my shoulder.
Strength from Spirit
Enhanced Willpower: superior
As I sat in the corner of the elevator it took everything inside me to not cry. Nigel's lifeless body could barely be seen as the trail of blood I left was a crooked crimson line that lead towards me. I tore at the hem of my dress as I used the torn piece of fabric to wrap around my shoulder as I saw my own blood pool at my feet and smear on the glass. I felt I was so close and yet still looking at the state I was in I realized how far away I was really standing.
As I leaned against the glass staring out at the city I tried to imagine where my house was as I started to talk to myself to keep myself awake.
"You can't give up" I said with a ragged breath as I tightened the cloth around my bullet wound that caused me to scream.
"You've come too far" I said through gritted teeth as I watched the blood soak the fabric and turned it into a rusty red.
"You've trained too much to give up over this" I finally said as I knotted the fabric. The elevator was descending at a faster pace as I forced myself on my feet. I wobbled a bit, trying to find my balance as I watched the numbers slowly countdown till they finally made it to the ground level. I heard the bell ring as the doors slowly opened and I saw the two bodyguards already waiting. As they stared at me all I did was bring up my hands and balled my fists.
Life's Training Part 1
Hand-To-Hand Fighting: superior (rank 2)
They were shocked to see me to say the least. In my bloody state they underestimated me as one of them reached out to grab my shoulder as I took hold of his arm. I pushed up on his shoulder joint, locking his arm as I tossed him behind me into the elevator. Slamming my fist down on the up button I watched as the door closed behind me. The other guard wasn't taking his chances. He swung quickly as I brought my arm up to block the blow. My bones rattled in my skin from the force as I swung my hand upward, catching him in this throat with a palm strike that caused him to stumble backwards holding his neck. I stepped forward kicking out my heel covered foot in a straight kick aimed at his gut that sent him flying into a wall. Smiling I lost my focus for just a moment as I suddenly felt the blow to my lower back.
The driver had come out and cheap shot me as I brought my fists up again. Waiting for him to make the first move I loosened my stance as he charged at me. He lowered his shoulder and drove it into my abs as I held onto him, driving my hip into his as I shifted my weight. Letting out a grunt, I twisted my body as I sent him flying to the ground. I straightened myself up only to duck right away from the large fist of the bodyguard I had thrown into the elevator, weaving my head side to side, my boxing training coming into use as I countered with a jab to his face followed by an uppercut to his brick hard chin that felt like it broke one of my fingers.
I looked at the Limo sitting there as I slowly started to walk towards it, thinking about my escape as my ears twitched from the sound of feet rushing at me from behind. By instinct I planted my left foot and spun around, my right heel stretching out in a fierce round house kick as I knocked out three men back and away from me. They lay there moaning in pain as I simply got into the limo and drove off.
Life's Training Part 2
Combat Planning: standard (rank 1)
Twisting along the suburban roads that sense of relief began to fill my body again. I was worse for wear but I knew home would only be a few turns away. But then it was all shattered as I slowly drove closer to my house. The spot of orange I thought was some weird hallucination became clearer what it was. My home, the one I've known from birth, set ablaze as a couple of thugs stood by and watched it crumble to the ground.
As I drove up I cracked open the window as one said "the boss is going to be happy to not have to deal with her anymore."
Another chuckled as he said "you think they're going to put her daughter to work?"
"I hope they do. Boss showed me a picture of her. She's got the sweetest..."
The leader of the group shoved his elbow in the last thug's ribs before he could finish the comment as he said "shut up all of you, the bosses limo!" He slowly walked up to the limo as he tapped on the driver's window, peering in through the crack as he said "yo, does the boss have something to tell us?"
I sat there seething in anger as I looked out the tinted windows. I watched the thug leader try to shove his finger between the crack I left in the window before he said "yo don't think you're better than me 'cos you're the driver don't mean you're any better than any of us pal!"
As I watched his fingers wriggle through the crack I pushed up on the switch for the power windows as the thug screamed and cursed. I waited for him to squeal as I kicked up the driver side door sending him flying backwards as I rushed out of the car. The other thugs were stunned as I grabbed him by his hair and smashed his head over and over again into the hood of the car. Turning back I heard the flick of a switch blade as I relaxed body, loosening my stance as I juked back, the knife piercing through the side of my dress, grazing my side as I swung back with a hook then a cross to his face.
Another thug came at me with a hammer as I stiffened myself up, trying to eat the blow to my ribs as I felt it crack from the pressure. I wrapped my arm around his swinging arm, trapping him close to me as I swung my head back then forward, landing my forehead on the bridge of his nose, the crimson explosion of blood splattering across my face as I got ready for the next attacker.
And it kept going, they coming at me, me adjusting myself, using everything I learned to beat them. It almost became a joke as the carnage continued through the morning as the sun rose. It didn't end when they were knocked out and it wasn't going to be when they knocked me out. As they staggered and begged for mercy I kept pummeling them, beating them, refusing to let them go as the house crackled and burnt to the ground behind us. The brawl wouldn't end when there was a winner. The brawl only ended when the winner was tired.
When I was done I quickly ran back into the limo, my hand gripping the wheel as I drove off and away, watching the half conscious bodies and the inferno in my rear view mirror as I made my way to the desert. Pulling into a gas station I stumbled out as I walked towards the rest rooms. Leaning against a wall I looked out into the vast expanse of sand and kicked off my high heels. What is there for me, which was the question I asked myself. I spent every minute of my life preparing for this moment and I still lost it all. My mother would tell me that I was the man who put it all on red and lost, if she was alive. At moment I started to feel all the little cuts, bruises, puncture wounds and broken bones in my body at once. Diamondback may be dead but he also won. Any hope for Sadie's little girl to be normal was gone.
I heard someone behind me asking if I was okay. The answer would frighten most people. I was a girl who knew nothing more than to fight and survive. She was told since she was a child that she would have to do those things in order to enjoy life. The die has been cast, the results have been revealed. There was only one thing this girl could do from this point on.
Turning around I grabbed the man by his throat as I held him up against the wall, tears flowing in my eyes as I simply said "if you give me your car I will be."