You have never felt yourself move so slowly in your entire life. With such a sluggish movement, you were able to conceal the sound of your footsteps. The only issue was the age of the building. Your foot hovered over the dark wooden step. Pressing your weight on it made it creak slightly. It was not loud enough to gain any attention, so you pressed forward.
It took a solid two to three minutes before you could make it up the flight of stairs. Upon reaching the top you were met with a somewhat narrow yet long hallway. Three doors sat on both sides of the hall, and one door sat face-to-face with you at the end of the passage. The door at the very end had a sign hung next to the door frame. Diligently, you glided towards it.
As you grew closer the sign read what seemed to be the facility’s name then the words “Reinhold Pisani - Geschäftsführer” beneath it. You could hear the voices once again from behind the door. A hazy gray smoke seeped between the crack of the door and into the area around you. The door seemed somewhat aged, and near the handle was a keyhole. You looked down towards it for a moment, then with cautious actions; you leveled your eye to it to see what was inside.
There were seven men in the room. Some wore hefty coats accompanied by a homburg hat, others wore all black suits with a fedora. Large cigars protrude from a few of the men’s mouths as well. Their twisted looks did not seem pleased. Six of the men surrounded a large wooden desk as they peered down at an old gentleman who sat in a lofty chair behind the table. The man in the chair leaned onto the desk with his elbows. He had a great look of distress on his face. A large cigar came from his mouth, too.
“I said this to you gentlemen a million times before and I will say it again; I don’t know where it went!” The old man spoke in a harsh tone to the group. To your surprise, he was speaking English. A young man in a suit who stood at the corner of the desk slammed his hands down on it aggressively. His back faced you so you could not catch a glimpse of his face.
“Cut the bullshit, Pisani! You know GODDAMN well where my money is!” The young one spoke out. He spoke English as well, his voice was somewhat nasally and had a mixture between a New Jersey and Italian accent. He stuck his index finger right into the man’s face. The one behind the desk must be the manager or someone of similar status, you thought.
Pisani did not flinch from where he sat. He looked right at the man’s finger in pure disgust. “You just need to give me a little more time. I cannot give back what you loaned out to me yet. That money is gone, Cavallo. I do not have control over where it is now. Just give me-”
The young one put his hand up to stop the man from speaking. He snapped his fingers and a man wearing an oversized coat lifted a briefcase from his side and handed it to the suited one. He held it up as he opened it to reveal its contents to the manager. Pisani's mouth dropped open and you could his skin turn ghostly pale.
You could not see what it was from your angle. The young man held no expression but anger as he lifted a pair of two severed hands that clutched onto a few pieces of paper. “That money is gone? THAT MONEY IS GONE?! THEN WHAT THE HELL ARE THESE?!” He pried the papers from the hands and threw them at Pisani with boiling rage.
“BANK STATEMENTS, TRANSFER PAYMENTS, PASSPORT FUNDS, RECEIPTS; ALL of which issues about the movements of MY money that traces back to YOU just for YOU to sit there to tell MY ass that it’s GONE?!” He fell silent for a moment. Dropping the briefcase without a care on the desk he clutched onto his Gordo cigar and took a moment to calm himself down. His once tense shoulders shrunk back down to fit his small structure.
“We talked to your guys, Pisani. Every. Single. One. The ones that refused to talks; we refuses ‘em to have the abilities to hide what we wanted. This is nothin’ but your fault. None-a this had to happen if yous waz justs more competent enough.” He drew a large pistol from a holster that latched to his side and aimed it right at the old man’s head. A look of alarm overcame Pisani’s face, he brought his hands together as if he was praying and looked up at the man.
“No, please! Just give me a little bit more time!! I will get your money back-- I swear! You can have the lounge! The Inn! My car! I’m just begging you, it doesn’t need to be like this!” He cried out. Tears began to weld in his eyes hoping, no-- praying for mercy.
The young one who held the pistol kept his arm up and barrel pointed at him. He began to slowly walk behind the desk to where he sat. You could now see the entirety of his face; bruised up and scarred. He held the gun tightly to the man’s head, so tight his fist quivered.
“You’re gonna listen here and you’re gonna listen closely,” His teeth were clenched as he spoke. “I's gots guys who will be here any minute. We are tearing this fuckin’ place apart and anyone who’s in it. Then you’re gonna come wit' us, and we’s gonna visit the Big Guy. Alright? … ALRIGHT?!”
An almost inaudible gasp left your lips. Your eye intensely kept peeking through the hole, but you began to feel your hand shake that was supported on the door frame. Pisani didn’t answer with words, he just quietly wept to himself with jumbled words while slowly nodding his head up and down.
Your purse began to sag down off of your shoulder. It hit the ground with a somewhat loud slumping noise. From the door next to you came a loud sound of furious barks from a dog. You could hear it put its front legs up on the door to try and push the door to enter the hall. The sound caught you so off guard you fell onto your bottom from where you crouched.
The dog’s barking caught the attention of the men in the room as well. They all turned the door almost simultaneously. “Someone’s up here!” Another man from the room spoke. You heard footsteps approaching the door.
In a frenzy, you scrambled onto your feet and collected your purse. Without a care of making noise, you dashed down the hall and fled to the stairs. The door swung open and other than only getting a slight view from your back you were gone. The young man now stood at the door frame looking down the hall to where you escaped. His eyes wandered down to the ground in front of him as a wicked smile spread across his face.
He bent down and picked up a torn gray part from your clothing. He turned back into the room and with a loud voice he announced, “Tie that poor bastard up! And make sure those men get here NOW!!” Two of the men went behind Pisani and began to tie his arms together with a thick rope. The young man turned back to the hall and twirled the fabric in his fingers.
“It looks likes we’s gots ourselves a snoop.”
The BLU Spy sat at the bar with his hands folded looking down at the counter. It did not take him long to realize you have been gone for a concerning amount of time. Is she aware of his intentions? Did she run off? Maybe he should go check on her? Whatever thought came in it never really carried any anxiousness within him, just inquiry.
Those thoughts were pushed to the side as you came speed walking towards him-- almost breaking into a sprint. A look of horror was written all over your face. You immediately grabbed onto his forearm of his rolled-up dress shirt which caused him to stand from where he sat. He got back into character showing a face of similar worry.
“Backer? Are you okay? You were gone for quite a long-”
“I need to talk to you.” Your voice remained quiet, but it was deadly serious.
You pulled him off to the corner of the bar where there was not as much noise. Your eyes kept darting to the hallway where you just came from. “What’s the matter, mon amie?” He whispered.
“Spy, we need to get these people out of here now. These people in suits they-- they had the manager at gunpoint asking for money and-- it was some money laundering scheme. They’re gonna be here soon, Spy, these people are in danger they had guns and--” You could barely keep your words straight as you spoke in hushed tones. He held the sides of your arms at this point.
“Backer, you need to slow down. You’re not making any sense.” He whispered in response. “What happened after you left?” You were about to open your mouth to speak once more when a horrified shriek came from the opposite side of the floor.
Turning your attention to the noise a woman stood pointing at the entrance. A group of men began to rush into the building. Armed with Tommy guns, they began to shoot them up into the air which erupted a storm of horrified screams and cries from everyone else in the building.
“GET ON THE GROUND!!!” A few of them began to shout over the gunfire. People were quick to obey, they began to crumble to their knees in a panicked and hysteric state. The old bartender stood behind the counter with his hands raised high in the air looking just as petrified as everyone else.
Two men in trenchcoats aimed their weapons at you and Spy. “GET YOUR ASS ON THE GROUND NOW!!” One screamed at the two of you. Both Spy and yourself held your hands in the air and slowly moved to your knees. You looked up at the men, they looked so familiar. Then you remembered:
They were the ones that left earlier that night.
A group of you now sat in the center of the lounge on your knees or your bottoms with your hands tied behind your backs. A group of three men circled you all while scanning the area. The young man in the suit you saw earlier now stood in the front of the facility.
“Boss, we tapped the phone wires. Someone in the area called the cops.” Another man in a suit and shades approached to inform him. The young man took the fat cigar out of his mouth and waved his hand towards the door.
“Then yous better do a good job not letting ‘em get in here!” He yelled. “Get outta my sight! Are you almost done looting those shelves? C’mon people... I don’t got all night!”
His orders were nagging and almost painful to listen to. You tensed up as he yelled. Spy was next to you. His face showed nothing but apathy. He almost looked… bored. You tapped his side with your elbow to get his attention. “What do we do?” You whispered to him.
“HEY! I DON’T WANNA HEAR A PEEP OUT OF ANY OF YA! YA HEAR ME?” He pointed his pistol in your direction. You jolted back up and sat still for a bit so you wouldn’t get scolded at again. Spy now tapped your side.
Without saying a word, he directed his eyes down to his hands so your view would follow. A sharp blade came from his gloves and was slowly cutting away at the rope. He made a very quiet shushing sound so you wouldn’t say a word. His eyes kept scanning the room, but you could not catch on to what he was trying to do. A loud crash was heard from the bar shelves. While everyone turned to face the noise, and over the Boss’s yelling, Spy took the chance to finish cutting the rope and cloak himself to disappear from the scene.
You sat there anxiously. You hoped that Spy had a good plan to get everyone out of here. The young boss finally noticed something was different. He glared right at you. “Hey, you!” He scolded in your direction.
“Me?” You questioned.
“Yeah, you! Where the hell did that blue guy go?”
“What blue guy?” You inquired once more.
“Don’t play stupid with me! The masked guy you were JUST whisperin’ to?”
You turned your head and pretended to act surprised by his disappearance. “Oh, my-- yeah! Where did he go? He was here and now he’s gone.”
Loud barking from the dogs upstairs echoed down onto the main floor. The young man rolled his eyes in an extremely irritated manner. He turned to one of the men and jabbed a finger into his chest. He ordered him to watch you all closely as he went upstairs to investigate.
Just as the young leader left the scene. A muffled cry then forced silence was heard behind you. It sounded like someone tried to cry in pain and was cut off. You turned your head to the left and watched the next guy who kept guard. His torso thrust forward as he made an “O” with his mouth to scream, but that sound was muffled as well. The man violently collapsed to the floor.
The guy who was ordered to keep watch noticed this and was just as confused as most of the other hostages were. He held his gun up from where the guard used to stand. Though he met the exact same fate-- falling to the floor onto his side. The people who remained tied up began to exchange looks of confusion. You waited with patience. It was then you felt a light hand touch yours which made you perk up in surprise.
“It’s just me, Chochotte.” You heard Spy whisper into your ear. You could feel a cutting motion between your hands and the rope. Faster than when Spy got himself out, he cut you loose as well. You felt him drop something into your palms. “Use this.”
Bringing them in front of you it was revealed to be a golden watch. It had almost a full teal circle in the middle of it. You quickly strapped it onto your wrist and tapped the button on the side. In an instant, you looked down to see your arms were semi-transparent. “Just go through the entrance when that guard moves.” You could feel Spy’s hand hover over your shoulder to point towards the opening of the lounge.
The two of you waited patiently. After a few minutes, the guard repositioned himself and walked off to the side of the room to talk to the guy behind the bar since the boss wasn’t there. Both of you got up from where you were and crept your way out of the facility. Just to be safe, you rounded to the back of the area and walked down a few buildings away to be out of earshot. You could hear the sound of wailing police sirens in the distance. The men from the building began to shout and ready their weapons.
Both of you uncloaked. “We should get back to our bases.” Spy suggested, but you still looked at him with a face of disturbance.
“What about everyone else in the building?” Your hand gestured back to the lounge. “Aren’t we going to help them?”
“It sounds like the police are on their way. They can handle it from here.” That was true. But something just didn’t sit right with you.
“Spy, if we have the capability to help them I think we should. What if people get hurt? Or killed?” You pushed once more. His face held longing as he gazed down at you.
“It is the same question that should apply to yourself, Backer. What will happen if you get killed?” You looked down at the ground in front of you. The Spy took out another one of his cigars and lit it. “I only say this for your own safety. It would be the smarter choice for us to leave while we still can.”
You kept silent for a bit in thought. You knew exactly what you wanted to say, but you just couldn’t choke it out. Spy took hold of your hand gently. “Let’s get going, mon amie.” He tried to usher you along with him, but you slipped your hand out from his grasp.
“If you want to go back to base, then leave if you want. It’s your decision,” You looked back to the facility. “But I’m not going to allow a bunch of innocent people to get hurt. I know I’m not a mercenary like you or the other guys on my team…” You began to unclip the watch from your wrist.
"... But I will figure out a way to help.” You placed the watch back into his hand. Your mind was conflicted, why was it only now you felt the inclination to risk it all? Were you curious about death? Wanting to be a hero? Were you a little bit tipsy? You didn't know, and to be quite frank; you didn't care either. You turned back in the direction of the building, shifting slightly to face the man in the blue mask. “I’ll see you around.” With that, you began to rush back towards the direction of the chaos.
“Backer, wait!” He exclaimed attempting to extend his hand to catch you, but it was too late. He stood in disbelief. What were you thinking? You had just escaped from the danger, and now you were about to nosedive back into it just for a few hostages? Spy couldn’t understand the reasoning behind it. Though, he did know what he had to do now.
“Oh, merde.” He grumbled to himself, sighing.
He whipped out his Spytron. On one of his shoulders sat an extremely short strand of hair. He placed it onto the device and an image of one of the guards popped up. He selected it and a paper mask with the man’s face appeared on his head. He looked back towards your direction. Putting his Spytron away and taking out his balisong; Spy began to follow your trail.