Chaos Angel Spanner — Chapter 5: I Lerned Alot in Skool
Part 6: In Too Deep (Final Revision)
Part 6: In Too Deep (Final Revision)
2 september 2014.
red house. When Desiree gets back to the annex, she asks Elle and Melody, “So how was school?”
“I controlled myself,” says Melody proudly.
Elle sighs. “But we ran into Lillian Fleer and Belle Shockley.”
“So.” Desiree looks at them. “Something happened at the high school. Your cousins are safe, but I’ll tell you when I find out tomorrow.” She pulls the girls into a tight hug and kisses them.
winkie’s. The sun is down; the sky is dark. Shira finds Samantha already waiting for her in the parking lot as she descends on her hoverboard. Shira lands the board, shuts it off, and gets off; the lifters’ loud whine fades out. The two girls hug. “Is Jen all right?” asks Sam.
“Her, me, Karen, yeah. Leila too, fortunately.” Sam sighs in relief. Shira slings her board, and they walk together to meet the blind old intel broker behind the dumpster.
“I been expecting you,” the Buzz says. “So you bagged your Slasher.”
“His ex blew him up with a mon.”
The Buzz bursts out laughing.
Sam throws a confused look at Shira. “That’s supposed to be funny?”
Shira grins. “Actually, it is funny. Eri might even pay me for it.” She turns to the Buzz. “I’m wondering, why would SPEC hire serial killers if they make such shithook teachers?”
“Ross didn’t hire this guy.”
“So it wasn’t just about the Student Union after all...”
Sam’s eyes go wide. “Why serial killers? That sounds crazy!”
“Think like Brinkman. Send the Patriots on a purge, you get a riot, and pacification gets expensive. So you have hitmen ‘accident’ the dissidents. Discreet, deniable, and cheap.” To the Buzz: “That’s all I needed to know. Thanks!”
“Remember,” he says gruffly, “you owe me lunch.”
“Sam’s here, I’ll have her preorder it.”
Walking back with Shira to her hoverboard, Sam asks, “Why would she have you send a killer mon to her ex-husband?”
“You don’t blow people up through AT&T, or Echelon blows you up.”
“Sorry I asked...”
dictel building. Richard Becket pockets his iPhone as soon as he ends his call to Peter Ross. The clone lies on the serving table tenderly cooked when Biff Thompson, president of President Goldman Sachs & Company, arrives in his helicopter wearing his usual fetishistic police uniform and the permanent goofy smile that always gets on Chairman’s nerves. As expected, instead of being seduced by the smell of the meal Dictel’s cooks have prepared, the President complains. “I thought I ordered you to serve me the real Shira Thomas!”
“I was hoping this special dinner would inspire you toward our vengeance.”
“Bull pucky! I won’t be satisfied until the real Shira Thomas is right here on this table, specially prepared personally for me!”
“You try catching her, then,” Becket snaps.
“My men are already working on it. Speaking of which, how’s my old friend Mark?”
“Bernkastel is dead.”
“Oh my God! Did Shira Thomas do it?”
“You had better hope to God that she did.”
harrison hospital. On one side of the bed where Colette lies comatose, big Kio Marques cries on her chest and caresses her hair. On the other side, Polly holds her hand and Karen whispers encouraging words into her ear. The doctor holds a conference with her parents and two nurses. Leila cannot bear to face Colette; Rob holds her tight and kisses her cheek.
Jennifer brings Shira in. Shira skips around the conference and runs over to Colette. She puts her hand on Kio’s shoulder; he sits up so she can lie down on her, hug and kiss her, and say, “Colette darling, I’m so glad you’re alive! You’re a tough girl. You can make it.” She kisses her again on the lips, kisses Kio on the cheek, then hugs Leila from behind and kisses her neck. “Rob, can I borrow Leila for the night?”
Leila half-turns her head in astonishment. Rob laughs. “How come?”
“I need to be with her. Please?”
“I’ll go with you, Shira,” says Leila wearily.
Shira holds her tight. “I love you, Leila.”
“I know.” They kiss, then leave hand in hand.
principal’s office. Dean Principal, Honey Sue Falconer, Morton Spiekerman, and Terry Mobley were in the back office all along. Now on the videophone’s Orwellian screen, the large face of Peter Ross stares them down. “Bernkastel is dead. Section Chief Becket informed me personally.”
“We watched it happen,” says Principal glumly.
“Leila Shelley distracted him,” Falconer snarls, “and Shira Thomas killed him.”
Ross snaps, “He was burned to death!”
Mobley muses, “Between the jealous wife and the jealous ex, he never stood a chance.”
“During a mission? Surely this is no coincidence. However, now that our agent has been destroyed, it is necessary that you keep an eye on Thomas, Kubota, the Blairs, and the Shelleys at all times. Do not allow them to do anything that will impact our IPO, which is sooner than you think. Am I heard?”
“Yes, sir!” they bark in unison. The monitor goes dark, and the room with it. The four principals are too stunned to move a muscle.
shira’s apartment. Leila leans back onto Shira in the hot bubble bath. The feel of that soft bare skin against hers intoxicates Shira like a drug. In her left hand Shira holds a cigarette. Hope lights it. “Don’t get hooked on that shit, Shira.”
“You know I’ll do anything for the woman I’m in love with.” She takes a puff; the smoke makes her choke and cough. Hope sighs and leaves the bathroom.
Shira puts the cigarette to Leila’s lips. Leila inhales long and deep, then blows out the smoke with languid ease. Shira feels her head go light and dizzy. When Leila is finished, she says softly, “I was trying to die.”
“I know what you are.”
“You know you’re in over your head now.”
“Like when Drusilla tried to abort me with a Taser?”
Leila turns over to look wide-eyed at Shira. “You?” The dark girl takes a drag on the cigarette and nods. She sputters and coughs. Leila takes it from her hand, takes one long drag, quickly blows out the smoke, takes another, and tosses the cigarette into the bath water. The girls are wreathed in a cloud of smoke that rises toward the bathroom fan. “Tell me, how come the Beckets hate you so much?”
“My family wouldn’t let ’em sell us out to Hitler. We’ve been at war ever since.”
“Please stop this, Shira,” Leila protests, “it’s suicide.”
“I refuse to let ’em hurt you.”
“This mess is my fault.”
Shira shakes her. “No it’s not!”
Leila digs her fingers painfully into Shira“s shoulders.”So whose is it?”
“The school company CEO, name of Peter T. Ross, and your very own grandfather. Please join me, Leila. Refuse your fate and help us turn the tables on Ross, the Governor, and their precious Revolution.”
She collapses onto Shira and cries. “Please don’t do this, Shira.”
“If you kill yourself, I’ll never forgive you,” Shira says softly. “Leila, I love you too much.”
They stare at each other for an endless moment. Then Shira brings Leila’s lips down to hers and gives her a long deep passionate kiss.
bangor squats. From the former mini-storage she has converted into a flat in the most run-down and crowded corner of town, Brandi Quinn makes a phone call. The man on the other end asks for her report. “I watched Blair in action. She was incredible. She is indeed the one.”
“Exactly as I hoped. Be ready to tell her when I give the word. We need her more than ever.”
“But she didn’t kill Bernkastel.”
“Her cousin, Shira Thomas. She pulled those assembly pranks, and Bernkastel died from an exploding mon. I say we consider her too.”
“Ask Arisa about her. Soon Blair will be ready to join us.”
technosphere. Posted to LocaFantoma99’s Profile on
September 2, 2014:
[The face is not Shira’s. It belongs to one Christina Lopez, an arrogant fat girl who wears too much makeup and who speaks in a thick L.A. accent.]ferry. And late that night, a short, barely pubescent, and obviously Asian girl in tattered goth-loli fashion pays a white man to escort her onto the ferry to Bremerton. Had Cascadia been whiter, it would have been much easier for Black Ball Transport management to shoo her away. But Seattle, like all West Coast cities, is full of immigrants and other racially incorrect people. She gets on.
Christina: I’m a male chauvinist pig. You gotta be a male chauvinist if you wanna be American. If you don’t hate women, you hate America.
[A slideshow of murder photos related to the Mark Bernkastel case.]
Shira: Somebody out in this corner of Cascadia really, really hates women.
[A recent California police mugshot of Bernkastel.]
The late Master Sergeant Mark Bernkastel, Blade Knight and serial killer, was a Real American.
[Shira finally appears, wearing her school uniform and beret. She is not smiling.]
Is it any wonder we’re proud to be the most violent nation in the world? That’s how we conquered the whole damn place. America, fuck yeah.
She takes an old picture out of her coat pocket. In Japanese, the Chinese characters she has written on the border read “Shiratori Mirai” — in Roman letters a partial anagram on the name Shira Miranda Thomas. She prays to whoever in heaven or hell may listen that she will find Shira on the other side, and that Nenene will never find out.
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Copyright © 2011, 2012 Dennis Jernberg. Some rights reserved.
[Revision 2, 7/1/11: Added character of Nicole; edited story to fit Second Edition continuity, corrected text and continuity errors.]
[Revision 2.1, 9/29/11: Changed Nicole’s name to Colette to fit Third Edition continuity.]
[Revision 3, 10/1/11: Edited to fit Third Edition continuity.]
[Revision 3.1, 10/3/11: Added new final scene, plus other slight revisions.]
[Revision 3.2, 10/22/11: Corrected continuity errors.]
[Revision 4 Final, 8/2/12: Now all new material. Scenes "The Student Union" and "Pizza Mission" now part of 5.5. The ferry-terminal and day-2-of-school scenes now part of 6.1.]