Thursday, June 9, 2011

Spanner 2.4: Rebel's Game

...from previous

Chaos Angel Spanner — Chapter 2: Sex Bomb
Part 4: Rebel’s Game (Final Revision)

22 august 2014.
As Shira walks up the marina walkway in baby tee, microskirt, and sneakers, Karen stands at the prow in a bikini, tall and beautiful, neither as curvy as Shira nor as slim as Jennifer. The men around her approve, but she is exposing herself to inflame Shira’s desire. She bats away a thrown stone and finds herself facing a hate-maddened old Moral Enforcer trying to shoot her. Shira capoeira-kicks him against a nearby yacht to knock him out so he drowns, then parkour-leaps on deck.

Horrified, Karen tries to protest, but Shira silences her with a kiss. “I love you, Karen,” she says. “This is war. Those people are conscienceless killers.” Karen sighs.

They strip each other bare in her compartment. Hands on each other’s shoulders, they gaze at each other with pleasure. Karen says, “Shira, I’ll let you make love to me all you want. But I need you to chant with me. Do it for Kira.”

Shira looks silently into Karen’s eyes. She looks down at Karen’s nude beauty for a moment, then gives in with a sigh. “Okay. I’ll do it. For you.”

“Thank you!” Karen pulls Shira tight and rewards her with a long joyful kiss.

Annoyed to see the old man dead in his slip, its owner hauls the corpse off to the skip.

sparks’ apartment. To the day world, he’s Jim Sparks, greenhorn cop whose ex-FBI father is COPCO’s all-powerful boss. Only to the night world does he show his dark side. He earned his handle “Debaser” for his superhuman skill in raping the securest databases, a skill he learned from dear old dad.

In the spare bedroom he commands the four monitors of his computer with the dataglove on his left hand. Lower right, email notifications; upper right, video window. A dead woman sent him an email. When he opens it, U.S. Marshal Gloria Wright speaks her final words:

If you are reading this, I am already dead. The real target was not the senator, but the little girl. Her name is Lucie Stenbeck. She is Drusilla Becket’s granddaughter. Shepherd Becket will stop at nothing to get hold of this girl and control her. You must keep Lucie Stenbeck out of her hands at all costs. You have full authorization to use deadly force if necessary. Goodbye, James Sparks.

She left him a gift from beyond the grave: a mysterious video, blurred almost beyond recognition, of a small child crying. Through the filter he can only recognize the child as female, but he recognizes with a shudder the voice of Lucie Stenbeck. The time stamp dates the video to the time of the Tohoku earthquake. Yet there is no indication that the video was shot in Japan, during the quake or the devastating tsunami that followed. Suddenly it ends. His blood goes cold when he realizes that the filter was not Photoshop but smoke, and the shooting location was on fire. Jackie Stenbeck’s yacht? The last moment of the infamous French mobster’s life? But Stenbeck died in a 2009 hurricane, not the 2011 quake. What was happening to five-year-old Lucie Stenbeck on March 11, 2011?

The new-message chime sounds. A new email from Loca Fantoma. Picture: Shira waves left-handed at him in full-frontal cosplay, nude but for Kekkou Kamen gloves, boots, and floppy-eared mask—oh god, the tilt of her body, the swing of her hips, that sleek smooth cinnamon skin, so deadly sexy so fucking young—his knees go weak. Message text:
Thought this might cheer you up. <3 S
attachment: ayasukireimu.ogv
“Huh?” Just to be sure, he runs a malware check: negative. It turns out to be a record of a recent exploit by the Technosphere’s most scandalous Player, sneaking around one of the elite gameworlds:
Aya Shibata stalks the miko. The dark elf with Shira’s body sports tousled straight red hair, long pointy ears, sweet malicious grin, and mud where clothes should be. She owns you. She has seen vocaloids slash and eat each other, yet those too pliable girls (and boy) give in too easily to her seduction. Bullet-hell shmup bosses are dangerous; Aya prefers a real challenge. To catch this hypersensitive onmyouji she needs to rely on more than just her Tracker skills and activate her reality distortion field to avoid being detected and Repulsed out of Gensoukyou altogether. She intends to do more than sneak her fingers into those ticklish bare armpits. Her diminutive prey does not notice her stalker rise behind her.

Suddenly Reimu feels someone a full head taller grab her one-armed from behind, painfully grip her left breast, and hold a large Bowie knife in front of her in a gloved left hand. But Aya does not plunge the knife into her heart; instead, she cuts through the miko’s hakama as far down as she can reach. When Reimu realizes who her attacker is and what she plans to do to her, she screams—
The scene cuts off. “Oh shit—” Sparks lowers his elbows to the desk, holds his head in his hands, shakes it sadly, laughs helplessly. When he recovers enough to wipe away tears, he points at the monitor: “This.”

Lower left: his news channels tell him that the Mafias are all in a panic over Spanner, worrying which Mob he’ll hit next: the Wops? Spics? Chinks? Russkies? Every Mafia hopes Spanner will trash all its rivals, including the Party itself. Spanner is not so discriminating. “Heh.”

Upper left: the talking heads spew the same hysterical spin over the Spanner incident on the lamestream news. It all blends together into mush in his mind, so he has the sound off. He saw Spanner’s spectacular début when the tagbomber crashed the opening of the Dictel Tower that blights the Bremerton skyline. Spanner kept below notice until he threw his monkeywrench on Revolution Day. His TrumpCity™ appearance proved he means business.

Focus lower right, alt-tab: clandestine Anonymous IRC channels: LulzSec, SP Nation, h4xx0rc1s7z, Wrecking Krewe. How to join Anonymous: 1. decide it exists; 2. include yourself in it. They chatter rapid-fire about Spanner. Grokking his Krewe connection, the other cells backlog his channel with huzzahs and hell-yeahs.

Alt-tab: a file window foregrounds. Video of Kowalczyk’s interrogation of Ogden’s priest. He plays it briefly.
Priest: It was Rebel Styles! I fell into a mad passion for
Kowalczyk: Isn’t Rebel Styles a girl?
Priest: No! I saw him, I kissed him, I made love to him—
Kowalczyk: Well, I’ve got evidence she’s the same girl as that Aya kid from Japan.
Priest: All makeup and camera angles. Do not be deceived by him! He is the very image of Lucifer himself as he appeared to Eve with the apple of sin.
Kowalczyk: (annoyed) Yeah, yeah...
Sparks stops the video. “Sorry, preach, Rebel ain’t no boy. She’s a rare true loli.” Lower right, alt-tab: bring up his news channel on the terror underground, upper left. Predictably, the Left terrorists are hailing Spanner as their hot new hero. He is not impressed. Close window.

Spanner’s been around longer than you think. The mysterious monkeywrencher first popped up on the Darknet shortly after the coup under four different “1337” handles associated with various shadowy branches of Anonymous. It soon hit him that Spanner and Rebel Styles were the same. He never told any of his fellow cops even after he joined COPCO. He had no reason to. He was in love with Rebel Rebel.

He still is.

But he knew that Rebel Styles was a true loli. No boy, no ordinary girl can be so sexually extreme. Ogden’s priest is raving about a boy because his threatened faith compels him to deny. Sparks was content to worship her from afar, behind firewall and encryption, away from the long fist of the Law. He never knew she was real till he met her.

And so he joined her.

COPCO will never know. The truth behind Spanner and Rebel is far beyond their limited understanding. His father would go mad. Kowalczyk doesn’t believe a mere child can be that seductive. His immunity to Charm makes him blithely oblivious in the face of so powerful a Charmer as Shira Thomas. Shockley hates her with a lover’s passion—for the way she humiliates her father repeatedly in game after game of chess? feuds so openly with her cult-guru aunt? Knowing Diana Becket Shockley’s background, you’d think she’d be targeting her ex-stepmother Willa Richter-Thomas. But there’s no accounting for human irrationality.

He plays the Spanner video on three screens, from beginning to end, then plays it again. He watches Spanner throw the wrench left-handed, in slow-motion, with uncanny accuracy. He watches Spanner expertly manipulate cloaking device, hoverboard, heatseekers, monkeywrench, security personnel, and the Becket brothers’ giant-monster egos. He watches as Spanner owns all opponents with practiced ease. He pauses on a frame shortly after Steve Jobs’ ka explodes, but before Spanner disappears.

“I know your secret, Spanner. Be glad I’m on your side.” He zooms in on the trenchcoated figure, then to the blurred image of his helmet. “We’ve got business... if you know what I mean...”

He maximizes the chatlines on all four monitors. The Darknet echoes with hosannas from the guerrillas in the hacker underground. From the white hats who allowed their souls to get bought out by the Cartel, he hears a frenzy of condemnation and hatred that he knows can come only from envy. From the mercenary black hats: silence.

He plays Rebel’s game because he wants her for himself, whatever it takes. From the Darknet, in the shadows, he’ll do anything he can to help Shira and her Krewe. He hates how the coup destroyed law enforcement: COPCO’s hostile takeover of all state and local police departments, schizophrenic swings between inquisition and corruption, license for its agents to commit even terrorism against civilians with no accountability except profit, and massive infiltration by terrorists mafias foreign governments and business rivals, as shareholders as well as cops, so that it has become impossible to tell if an agent is honest or on the make or which faction he’s working for. Of all the people in the Imperial government, the only ones more corruptible than private police are politicians. His desire: her Spanner operation with him against COPCO itself.

But among cops he will continue to lie low, say nothing, keep up his masquerade as Jimmy-Boy the Pretty City reject gofer. When undercover, he learned, never let anyone else know who you’re really working for: to have one’s cover blown can spell death—or worse.

With datagloved left hand he minimizes all windows on all monitors, keys the screensaver active. In place of the KDE desktop, images of Shira Thomas in various states of undress: in bikinis, body paint, nothing at all. He gets up to leave. When he reaches the door, he shuts off the bedroom light. He stares back at the shifting images of seductive Shira for several minutes to torture himself with unbearable sweet longing. Then he shuts the door and leaves.

copco seattle. Shockley barges into Chief Becket’s office to breathlessly tell him: “Brother! I have a theory! Rebel Styles is Spanner!

The one-eyed man looks at her skeptically. “How do you know that?”

“Their reality distortion fields are the same!”

“Your suspect’s dead.”

“Kowalczyk’s wrong. One twin survived. Shira Thomas is a high-level Charmer. She’s all but broadcasting her guilt into my dreams.”

“Dreams won’t cut it. Prove it, Diana.”

underground city. The place: Seattle’s old city beneath the streets of Pioneer Square, tourist-overrun by day; at night it belongs to the badside rejects, swarming fighting dancing making out, drawn underground to questionably legal nightclubs segregated below to keep them from damaging the city above.

The club: the techGothic. The scene: Dark Industrial. The lighting: neon noir. The music: metal house at deafening volume, subsonic beat shaking the building, guitars roaring screaming like tortured demons. The Rivetheads rule here. The perfect place for guerrilla hackers to disappear.

The crowd on the floor convulse like zombies and broken robots. Blue-skinned nude deadgirls robodance on platforms. Men hidden by darkness in back copulate with sexbots sculpted into illegally grotesque fetishistic forms. Oliver Thorwald attempts to screw a sexbot only to start hitting it in rage at his own impotence. Johnny-Johnny Johnson giggles stupidly. A jealous serial-killer fangirl obsessed with Thorwald, a gothpunkette sporting black leather boots and skirt, butchered hair dyed black, and black flame tattoos covering her naked torso, tries to pull him away. “What the fuck are you doing, bitch?” he shrieks.

“Get away from that—thing!” the fangirl wails. “You belong to me and only me!”

In the dark booth farthest back a man in black duster and mirrorshades sits alone. The hot and heavy robosexual action distracts attention away; the loud music creates excellent cover for clandestine conversation. James Sparks waits for a man he arrested by day. Soon enough, the Wrecking Krewe hacker styling Dead Hello Kitty silently slips in across the table. “Sorry about the shakedown,” says Sparks.

“No prob, J.T.,” Deth Pussy replies. “Cost of doing business. Got my Spanners?” Sparks pulls a one-terabyte thumb drive out of his coat’s inside pocket and flips it across the table. Steve catches it and throws one of his own to Sparks. “Six years of Rebel and Aya-chan, complete as of today. So what’s the 411?”

“Your cousin sent some vids to a lab for reality distortion field analysis. The now ex-colleague who beat you up? One of the victims. They suspect Rebel herself’s our Spanner.”

“So how come she popped up right after the monkeywrench hit?”

“Beats me. Hell, even Shira’s got no idea.”

“Well, hell!” Deth laughs. “You think Artie Brinkman’s got a hand in it?”

“If that priest’s right and Rebel’s a boy, she’d be right up his alley, but she’s not, so no. Besides, the whole thing came outta the blue.”

“Scratch one more hypothesis...”

“But Art’s got Stu for seeing a woman not his wife. Video’s right there, see for yourself.”

“Ha! Figures ol’ cuz’d be on the make!”

Sparks leans toward Deth. “Every cop’s on the make, Steve. What’s the COPCO corporate motto? To Surveil And Punish. You do the cop thing only ’cuz you wanna beat people up, spy for the enemy, preferably both. Wanna survive with a badge? Better know who’s rolling whom for whom.”

“Consider it grokked. Hey, keep in touch.”

Sparks winks. Deth Pussy gets up and disappears into the crowd of robotic dancers. Sparks pockets Deth’s thumb drive and smiles.

Thorwald’s psycho fangirl hammers him with her fists and angrily screams, “<em>I’m</em> your one and only! I’ll kill for you! I’ll even die for you!”

The killer grabs her by the throat, throws her out of his booth, leaps on her, and stabs her in the chest repeatedly. Blood flows freely from the incisions in and between her bare tattooed breasts. No one bothers to notice except Sparks.

The fangirl gasps, “I love you.” She dies with a sigh and a smile. He slits her throat open to make sure she’s properly dead.

Thorwald climbs to his feet and grins at Johnny-Johnny. “Great thing about fangirls is, they always die squeeing.”

Sparks cocks his gun and points it in his face. “Had your fun quota for the night, Ollie?”

“Seriously!” whines Thorwald. “She begged me to kill her!”

“I bet Leila will be all pleased over that.”

“I’m special! Don’t you know what a torment it is to be so rich, handsome, and popular?”

Sparks rolls his eyes. “One could never have guessed.”

I deserve Leila as a reward!

Sparks throws his head back and laughs at him hard.

“What’s so funny, Sparks?”

“And then once you get into Leila’s panties, she’ll bite off your manhood, same way she did your butt buddy Johnny-Johnny.”

Thorwald launches a vicious uppercut at Sparks’ jaw. Sparks intercepts it and throws him into Johnny-Johnny, knocking out the giggling thug. He glares at the black-trenchcoated man.

“Y’know, Ollie,” says Sparks, “you may be richer than God, but I was better looking back when I was as ugly as my daddy. Just wait till lovely Leila gets a peek at that shapeless sack of suet you call a pretty face.” He turns toward the entrance and slowly walks away, leaving Thorwald twitching with impotent rage.

boathouse. Reva and Eddie awaken late at night to the hypnotic sound of two beautiful voices chanting. They are overjoyed to see Shira and Karen chant together, tears flowing for each other and for Kira.

Some time later, they hear the sweet sounds of lesbian love coming from Karen’s compartment. They stare at each other and blush. They resist the temptation to laugh. “Just like me and Willa,” Reva says wistfully.

Eddie sighs. “Runs in the family...”

on to the next...

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Copyright © 2011, 2012 Dennis Jernberg. Some rights reserved.
Creative Commons License

[Revision 2.1, 6/22/11: Text and continuity errors corrected.]
[Revision 4 Final, 7/5/12: Entire original section “Mystery Man Theory” merged with the next section plus a new scene; previous section “Underground City” now moved here along with new scenes and one originally in 2.2. Expanded and heavily revised to fit Revision 4 continuity.]

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