Chaos Angel Spanner — Chapter 8: Rip Her to Shreds
Part 4: Hide in Plain Sight (Final Revision)
Part 4: Hide in Plain Sight (Final Revision)
18 september 2014.
shira’s apartment. Shira is sitting up naked against her bed’s headboard reading a book when her bedmate rolls over to face her. She flings the covers off Rob so she can get a good look at his gorgeous body. She kneels above him like a tigress admiring her prey, smiling mischievously. He can’t stop himself from giggling like a girl. She purrs, “I wish there were more guys like you, with beautiful bodies and beautiful hearts.”
“What about Frank?”
She frowns. “He’s not as pretty as he looks. Charlie says she’ll take care of him.” Her mischievous smile returns. “Now turn over.” She rolls him over so she can squeeze and kiss his beautiful buttocks and make him squeal. Then out comes the strap-on, and soon Shira is entering him from behind...
lockers. Charmian confronts Shira in her cheerleader uniform . “What’s this rumor you’re spreading about steroids?”
Shira flashes a cockeyed smirk. “Didn’t you see what happened on the field, Charms? Now I’m hearing Frankie Becket’s involved.” She winks wickedly.
Charmian harrumphs contemptuously, turns on her heel, and flounces away.
Nearby, Leila opens her locker only to find a barbaric shrunken head staring her in the face. She faints dead away; Shira hurries over to catch her before she hits the ground hard, then gently sets her down. She stands up to look at the head. Jennifer runs over. Shira takes the head out so they can inspect it.
Two blond pigtails fall down to each side.
Jennifer asks, “Looks like Bunny Strakeljahn’s. One of Ollie’s souvenirs?”
“Won’t Bunny herself be amused when she comes back.”
They hear giggles behind them. They look that direction and catch a glimpse of Christina, Marina, and two freshman friends scurrying away.
homeroom. Homeroom teacher number eleven is Mr. Jones, who explains, “You know the real problem with liberals? They can’t be satisfied with godly white women. They gotta have their black meat—”
“You mean they’re both ‘nigger lovers’ and ‘fags’?” interrupts Jennifer. “Funny, I thought liberals were uppity white women who refuse to realize their true place is with their sister wives in the chosen rich men’s harems.”
Shira stands up, throws back her head, and laughs. Mr. Jones sputters in incoherent rage. The other tutors laugh helplessly. But the kids from the school establishment remain silent.
middle school. Melody and Elle run down the hallway to try to get to the girls’ room before the bell rings. Suddenly Elle and Belle run into each other. They look at each other awkwardly. Then Belle looks at Melody for a long tense moment.
Suddenly Melody puts her arms around Belle, holds her close, and starts to cry. Elle holds Belle from behind; soon the three girls cry together. The bell rings—
First period. Elle and Melody get back to a classroom still without a teacher. Lillian glares over her nose at them. They’re in their seats when he comes — a pretty man with long blond hair — Lillian lets out a long painful gasp, stands up, and faints.
lockers. Leila slowly and sadly treads the hallways, looking down, trying to think of nothing. When at last she looks up, suddenly she finds herself at her locker — with Debbie. The two girls stare at each other, do not move, say nothing.
A voice behind them says, “You can’t get away from me, Leila.” Miss Thorndyke.
Debbie storms into Lovie’s face. “Hello, flowie,” she snarls.
Lovie stops cold. “What did you call me?”
In a mock-feminine manner, Debbie mocks, “A passively feminine lady, like Bella, that unique and special snowflake.”
“I love Bella!” protests Lovie.
“Just one more reason to hate you, cuz.”
Christina and Marina jump Debbie. Through force of will alone, she throws the bigger girls off. She turns to find Bert — and Ron and Don? She crosses her arms. “Well, well, well. So Frankie’s doing you now?”
Lovie is about to scream until she sees the Shovel Clique assemble behind Debbie: Scotty, Johnny, Lance, and Mikey; Lucy, Lady, and — the Brinkmans? Bob warns, “Touch our cousin, and your whole gang’s in a whole world of trouble.”
Bert blurts, “Debbie, you trai—” Debbie punches him out.
Shira and Jennifer slip through the gap in the cliques’ Mexican standoff. Shira slaps Lovie’s butt. “Hi, Lovie!” Jennifer prevents her from jumping Shira. The cousins casually weather the stares as they put their books into their lockers and leave.
library. Before class Polly nervously points out to Shira one of the misfit kids angrily scribbling on a piece of paper. Shira recognizes Kenny Partridge, Tournament loser, forced into it for the prestige of his rich and vain Corporate father; he lost so badly that he didn’t even make it out of the first round. He has never recovered. The Valiants like to torment him and call him emo.
Shira knows he likes to hang out in the library. She has Jennifer stand watch while she sneaks into the library boys’ lavatory while it’s empty. Carefully, she digs through the paper towels in the trash bin until she finds the paper. A list of all the members of the Student Council and Team Valiant. A hit list. She folds it up and sticks it in her bra.
19 september 2014.
shira’s apartment. Shira is sitting up naked against her bed’s headboard reading a book when her bedmate rolls over to face her. Dave marvels at the woman Shira has become. She turns to him and kneels so he can get a better look at her body. “You’re like a different person, Shira,” he says, “so much better than you were before.”
“Being a woman helps. Rebel Rebel can eat my dust.” She winks; he laughs.
He rubs the bump on back of his neck. “I wish you could do something about this chip. It hurts.”
She sits him up so she can kiss the bump. “I’ll find somebody at least.” She lets him fall onto his back so she can lie on him in “69” position. “This is what a real woman tastes like, so drink deep.” He puts her wet cunt in his mouth, she slips his penis into her mouth, and they make love as equals.
lockers. Debbie opens up her locker as if trying to tear off the door, throws her books in, and slams it shut. When she turns to go back, she finds a blond-pigtailed shrunken head staring back at her. She shrieks and jumps. The head lowers to reveal the grinning face of Shira. “You stole that from Frank,” she growls.
“Oliver, actually. Bunny threw it at him herself. She likes pulling stunts like that. But what about Leila?”
She turns to leave. “That’s it. ‘Bye!”
Shira grabs her from behind. “Jealous ’cuz she left you for me, huh?”
She struggles out of Shira’s embrace and screams, “I was the only saving her life! You killed her! Are you happy now?” She turns away with a Parthian shot: “Bunny gave it to Frank.”
Shira stares numbly as she watches Debbie run away.
homeroom. Homeroom teacher number twelve is — Adam Treece? His Kitsap Kouriers coworker Shira says, “I didn’t know you were a teacher.”
He shrugs. “It’s a job.”
Debbie comes in. She stares at him strangely. She goes over to him, studies him carefully, feels his face, feels his hair. Students giggle and snicker. Treece blushes nervously and struggles to keep silent.
Dorian comes in. She stops cold at the door and stares.
Scotty comes in and sneers at Treece’s uncut hair. Treece narrows his eyes at him. Scotty surrenders and scurries to his seat, satisfied he’s a combat veteran who has earned his hair.
Christina and Marina go directly to their seats and keep their eyes on him and say nothing.
Rob has a double take. This man looks familiar yet unfamiliar. He tries to bring him into clear focus but cannot. He blinks.
Leila comes in — the blood drains out of her face — she screams as loud as she can and runs out. Shira looks at Jennifer. Jennifer nods and walks toward Treece. Shira runs after Leila. Treece finds himself staring directly into the suspicious eyes of the Slasher-slayer of Blake Island.
lab office. Jennifer holds an emergency Science Club meeting behind closed doors. Steve breaks the tense silence. “Adam Treece?”
“Yeah,” says Jennifer. “Adam Treece.”
“Hoverboard courier,” says Shira. “Sophie trust him with the Thorwald job and gave it to me. Which is just as well, ’cuz somebody had it in for the now late chairman of Biotron.”
Nancy comes up to them with a strange look on her face. “I saw this name ‘Adam Treece’ on the list of Slender Man bloggers.”
They all look at Nancy.
Jennifer shakes her head sadly. “That’s impossible.”
“Either that’s not that Treece, or he’s an impostor. No ‘Slenderblogger’ survived 12/21. Not. a. one.”
Students in the club gasp in terror — Shira remembers — Richard Becket destroying her Dictel Park spycam — Leila—
dictel stadium. Shira is nearly out of breath when she finally finds Leila, trembling against the side wall, downing a flask of whiskey, smoking with determination. “Leila! What’s wrong?”
Leila lets Shira put her arms around him. “’Adam Treece’... He called himself ‘Adam Treece’...”
“I know him from the courier—”
“He’s not Adam Treece! He can’t be!”
“Treece was one of those ‘Slender Man’ bloggers — he died with the rest of ’em on 12/21 — I know he’s dead, I killed him myself — with a shovel!“
Shira holds Leila’s cheeks and stares deep into her eyes — a mad MIB, two terrified girls, a shovel, he’s on the ground and she spears him with it over and over as Lucie screams — Lucie — Frank Becket comes, she slashes his face with the shovel blade drawing blood — Leila destroyed his face—
utility building. Behind the school, at the edge of the woods, Marina reports to... Adam Treece? “What is it?”
“Blair thinks she sees auras,” she says.
“Her mother is Willa Richter-Thomas. She sees auras all right.”
“I could feel this chill go down my spine, like she could see right through me.”
“She knows Leila’s a Positive.”
“Leila’s a poz? Get outta here!”
“No way! They were all dead by 12/21!”
“Leila escaped. She’s the last.” He studies her shocked face. Then he disappears into the woods.
girls’ restroom. Leila bursts in hoping to cry alone, only to spot Jennifer at the mirror applying lipstick. Jennifer turns toward her. “Leila, what’s wrong?”
She stares wide-eyed at her for a few agonizing seconds. “How come you know everything about me?”
Jennifer looks down and smiles. She takes off her glasses. Then she looks right into Leila’s eyes. “I can see it clear as day.”
“The aura is the magnetic field projected by a living organism. Chemical changes within the body cause color and intensity changes in the aura. You can say I’m a sort of living spectrum analyzer. I not only see your aura, I can read it, like reading your mind without telepathy. Your body, too. You shine in a very special way, Leila. Wanna see what I see?” She offers Leila her glasses.
Leila puts them on. At first she sees a slight distortion. Jennifer takes out her phone to summon an app. “Normally I use these to block my aura vision. But you don’t have it, so I’ll give it to you.” Suddenly her field of vision goes psychedelic. A bright halo of dancing light surrounds Jennifer, full of strong colors with yellow dominating. “Now look at yourself.” Leila turns toward the mirror and gasps when she sees the light storm raging around her reflection: a surprisingly strong green shimmering with violet and pink and even some red, but shot through with dark weak greens and purples, depressed grays, and a surprising amount of angry black. But the colors are not as important as the pattern — in her memory the ghost of Dr. Chaloner’s voice saying, What amazing potential you have...
Mimi and Trishie come in together. The energy around them is nowhere near as strong. These, Leila deduces, are normals. “Oh my god,” Mimi gushes, “they look so cute on you!”
Jennifer smiles brightly. “Trishie, how’d you get so pink? You find somebody?” Trishie blushes and stutters.
Leila tilts her head and studies Trishie carefully. “Why, there is a lot of pink around you.” Trishie disappears into a stall.
Nancy enters, hurrying toward the stall in back. Leila is shocked at the dark colors, small size, and unhealthy shape. When Nancy is out of sight, Jennifer whispers in Leila’s ear, “See? Instant diagnosis. The exact illness, mental or physical, how bad it is, just at a glance.” Leila looks at her. Jennifer winks.
Sylvia walks in. “Oh, hi.” Jennifer looks at her curiously. Leila sees a bright strong aura with none of the darkness in her own, but — the same pattern — Leila gasps — “What is it?”
Jennifer smiles. “Oh, nothing.” Leila gives the glasses back to her.
downtown bangor. At the same illegal club in the same abandoned warehouse from which Leila was taken last week, Sylvia stands in line waiting for the gangster boyfriend should get her in early but will never come again. If there’s more girls than guys, the “coolest” guys get to go in with two or more girls. But if there’s more guys than girls, the “uncoolest” have to pay the cover charge, or they have to try to invite a hot chick on their own if they want to get in free. The criterion of “cool” varies from night to night depending on who mans the door. But any girls who bring hot girls are rushed in with top priority. In a sexy green minidress that matches her eyes Sylvia leans against the wall across from the door and watches the line of clubgoers go by.
Impatiently she checks her watch. An ordinary wristband marks its wearer as an actual working person and is considered a major fashion faux pas by those who can afford permanent leisure; but Sylvia is so beautiful and stylish the cool people let it pass. She waits for her gangster to come, the man her married sister Janet keeps warning her against, looking nervously in the direction he will never come from, dreading but longing for his arrival. Thirty minutes pass, the sun has gone down, the door is about to close, and still he has not yet come. The line is long, many will not be allowed in, fights break out, bringing out several bouncers who eject the brawlers and forcing Sylvia to avoid errant blows and flying bodies. Now she starts to worry. At last he’s here—
Charlie rocks an even sexier midriff-baring teal minidress that matches her semispiked auburn hair. She sweeps Sylvia into a huge embrace, spins her around twice, and gazes deep into her eyes.
“What are you doing here?”
“I came for you.” Then she whispers into her ear, “Will you be my girl?”
“Please? Just for tonight?”
“Screw Frank. You’re just another fling to him.”
Sylvia stares at her in shock. “Fling...?”
“I want you to be happy, Sylvia. Please be my girl.”
Blushing deeply, she struggles with indecision. After several agonizing seconds, she swallows her pride. “Okay.” Charlie gratefully plants a long hot kiss on her lips. Sylvia’s eyes go wide, but then her body begins to surrender.
The crowd begins to thin as some clubbers give up and leave. Charlie continues to kiss Sylvia. The doorman barks, “You two! Get in!” Charlie winks at him and leads her arm-in-arm into the club as the clubbers remaining outside moan in disappointment and start to protest. Sylvia asks, “Charlie, why are you doing this?”
“Because I’m in love with you.” She kisses her again.
The loud club step music assaults them with its pounding beat. The clubbers they pass by on the crowded floor stare at the fallen idol with her new girl and make way.
kitsap kouriers. Kei gasps when Shira returns a ruined hoverboard, a complete mess herself, clothes ruined, covered in dirt, oil, even blood. “Oh my god what happened?“
“I just got ambushed by Flyen Monkeez.”
“Shira, are you all right?”
“Me, yeah. My board, not so much. You notice anything suspicious lately concerning the new guy?”
Shira comes uncomfortably close and stares hard into Kei’s eyes. “Well, get this: ‘Adam Treece’ is the name of a Slenderblogger.”
Kei staggers back in shock, then dashes back to the desk to pick up the phone. “Hello, Sophie? This is urgent. It’s about Treece.”
dance club. DJ Deke Head spins the discs. The beat pounds like a giant clockwork heart. Charlie finds an empty booth; she has Sylvia sit inside so she can protect her. She raises her piña colada. “To our beautiful love.” They clink their glasses, down them in one gulp, and kiss.
A man clears his throat. The silvery long hair, beautiful harsh face, strange eyes, and ironic smile mark him as Frank Becket. He leans toward Charlie amorously. “Excuse me, dear cousin, but that girl belongs to me.”
Charlie matches his ironic smile with hers and leans into him threateningly. “That would be kill stealing?” Sylvia gasps in fear.
“I always thought your thing for girls was gross, Charlie.”
She slinks out of her seat and into his face. “I always knew your addiction to Factor Positives was evil.” Suddenly Frank drops into a convulsive seizure as if hit by a stun gun. “Give up, Frankie. She’s mine now. I’m in love with her.”
A crowd gathers around them. He shakes his head. “Charlie, Charlie. Don’t make me angry.”
“Frankie, I own your ass.” She holds out her right fist, angrily snapping with electric bolts. She looks at the bleached-blond Japanese woman behind him — Arisa Saionji, who looks at her Arab-looking companion with the military haircut — Lars Magnus Izquierdo, who looks at the Israeli commando nearby — Martin Lansky, who looks at the big black man in Ray-Bans — John Peck — then they all stare at Frank. He smiles apologetically at them, and then Charlie. Not wanting to face the Slasher Hunters, he hurries out. Several gangsters follow him out.
The crowd begins to disperse. Peck nods. Lansky salutes. Lars thumbs-up. Arisa blows a kiss. Charlie winks back. And soon they are gone. Charlie sits down and lets Sylvia’s body collapse into hers with a huge sigh of relief. Charlie gives her a long kiss. “C’mon, let’s go dance.”
“Our first dance as a couple?”
“Mm-hmm!” They climb out of the booth and run together hand-in-hand onto the dance floor.
shopping mall. Jennifer and Brandi take Mimi, Trishie, Ruthie, and Nancy out to dinner in the food court. Suddenly Stan Green and Vince Corson attack; Jennifer picks up a table, swings it around, knocks them down.
Vince spits, “Now you’re nigger-lovin’, Blair?”
Jennifer laughs at them. “Oh, I see you haven’t met Peck and Lansky’s friend, Brandi of the Slasher Hunters. This is about the new poz, isn’t it.”
He gasps. “How do you know—” Stan covers his mouth to shut him up.
Jennifer smiles and lowers her glasses. Suddenly she puts them back up, closes her eyes, turns away — “Ew!” When she opens them again, the Moral Enforcers are gone and the girls are staring at her in shock.
Nancy’s eyes are wide with realization. “New poz? You mean—”
Jennifer covers her mouth. “Shhh! They don’t know.”
dance club. Sylvia and Charlie dance together like a couple caught in the first sweet madness of first love. They dance in a hot frenzy that makes them sweat so hard their dresses stick to their skin.
Charlie stares at Sylvia, making her blush, then gets Sylvia to stare at her body and blush deeper red at the realization of how beautiful she is. The dance floor opens up, a crowd gathers around them, Charlie pulls Sylvia into her arms and kisses her long and hard to the cheers of the entire club.
downtown bangor. Leila, alone in the middle of the night, stands in the lookout on the AT&T Network tower overlooking Bangor High and Dictel Park. Without restraining herself she cries. The Bangor night fills with her wails of despair.
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Copyright © 2012 Dennis Jernberg. Some rights reserved.
[Revision 4 Final, 9/2/12: Heavily revised for Fourth Revision continuity, with old scenes deleted and new scenes added. Sylvia/Charlie scenes originally written for Book 2 R1 with Desiree instead of Charlie.]