I look around the alley. I see where she was left right next to huge green metal dumpster. There are a few bloody rags and wrappers. I don't remember seeing any wounds on her so I wonder what happened to her before she ended up in the alley and what happened after the alley. There's a jagged piece of metal sticking out of the wall, I touch it and it is caked with dried blood and hair and looks recent. I will have to ask her about that as well. I see nothing else of importance in the alley and turn to leave but something catches my eye. The light glints off a shining piece of metal. I bend down its some political button. 'Vote Choate' is printed over a field of red white and blue, a piece of blue cloth is tangled up in the pin part.
Michael Choate, comes from a long line of political blowhards. This guy's posters have been all over the city and I've seen more than one person with his buttons. He's running for reelection of some office, congress I believe. He's been pushing the political clock for a long time and I've heard he's looking at something bigger than just state senate. There is talk of this win putting him in contention for a run at the white house. I typically let the politicians weave their on web of deceit but it's next to impossible to ignore this guy in the city this year. I take the button and join Sagittarius at the head of the alley.
"You want to tell me about your abduction?"
"You look hungry, I bet you're hungry. Come on. I know a place"
She runs across the street nearly getting run over in the process before I can protest. She cuts down the alley and I have to run to catch up her. When I get into the alley she's not there. I hear a noise from above me and I see her disappear over the edge of the top of the roof. Appears we are going roof surfing again.
We end several minutes later in the top of a closed diner. I recognize the smell and wonder how come they haven't shut this place down for health code violations.
"I know the chef. He sometimes lets me crash here keeps me in supply." She explains.
We go through the back door and come into the dry pantry. The place has long been closed for the night but of course I can still smell the scent food that has long since seeped into the building and stays trapped within its walls.
She points to a booth then leaves me alone. I'm not comfortable here and want to leave, but the growl in my stomach is stronger than the gnaw in my gut so I sit down and wait for her to return. She comes back with a plate piled with sandwich triangles and places it in front of me. Before I help myself I decide I need to get the full story.
"You gonna talk?"
"Tell me what you remember." I pick up a sandwich and bite into it.
She sits in the counter and I'm glad she chooses not to sit at the booth. She produces a smoke and a match from that loose sleeve that seems to keep everything and strikes the match with her thumb. Soon the diner stinks with acrid smell of smoke.
"I really don't member much. I wasn't there fo dat long. I had been lookin' for a friend of mine that had gone missin'. Not much of a trail to follow. Danise was a workin' girl so she was out there every night. No tellin' who she was last wit.
"Anyway I was talking to some working girls out in Spanish Harlem. Big old car come up driver gets out and starts talking to us looking fo a couple a girls to party wit, he says. Few of us gets in the car. After that I don't member much. Woke up in a basement. There were a few of us there, all of the ones that had been missin'. I guess we were like entertainment. Sometime one would go up some time a few. They had them do different stuff sometime things they typically get paid fo, sometime they had em fight each other and stuff."
"I was not, what did they call it, cooperative. Not used that often. Only 'member going up coupla time. It was the same guy each time, he fuck the same, like he do it good. Course you all think you got it happening, stoopid men." She snubs out the smoke.
"How'd you get out?"
"Don't member. I 'member a fight lot 'o yelling, then it go black and I woke up in that alley. Clef was wit me, but somethin'." She shrugs again.
"What do you mean?"
"Dunno. Clef was there but there was somethin' about it didn't feel right."
"You can't give me anymore?"
"I can't give you nothing I don't got. I was doped up I know that feeling, happened befoe when-"
She cut off and looks out if the front windows. "You better go."
"Why what's wrong?
"Go." She produces an arrow and loads the bow.
"What is it?"
"Jack if you don't want to get dead tonight I suggest you leave."
I get up but not particularly happy about running away from whatever is happening. I take one last look at her. She really does look young. I wonder if she is even past 16. I go back through the dry pantry, I get to the door we came in but decide to at least go back and find out why I was dismissed. I stay in the shadows out of sight and I can hear her taking in that broken English she tries to put on to throw me off but I know she's faking. I see 5 Negros around her almost surrounding her trying to be intimidating. One I recognize as one of the unlucky ones from my greeting party earlier tonight. But why they need 5 guys over one little girl makes me laugh. They are more afraid of her than she ever will be of them, even if she's outmatched which I think right now she is.
The one in long black leather coat takes the lead.
"Raymond tells me you interfered with the boys." She says nothing and climbs back up on the counter lighting another smoke. "While I think it's important we find out who did this, who is doing this, we don't need no costumed outsider interfering." He walks closer to her stepping up to the counter settling in between her legs like bazaar perverted lovers embrace. What were they all going to watch? He puts a hand on her arm and I think that was one his first in a long line of mistakes.
She grabs his hand and I can hear the crunch of bone as she crushes the hand then twists his arm up and brings her the elbow of her other arm down on his. He screams and she turns him around holding him in front of her like a shield with his arm wrapped around his neck in an awful chokehold. I'm not really sure they understand she's already gotten the best of them.
Two try to advance on her and she pulls the big man's arm around his neck tighter and he groans stopping them in their tracks.
"I'm sorry Max did you have something to say?" she says this into his ear licking close as if they are two lovers showing off in front his friends. He lets out a strangled moan that doesn't sound good. I'm impressed and wonder how someone managed to get the best of her to trap her anywhere.
"Let 'em go Sag," a voice says from the door. It's that guy Clef. Sag holds Max for a moment longer then let's him go. He crumbles to the floor coughing and spitting up.
"Your girl's days are numbered." he manages to cough out after a few minutes.
"You know Momma Grace 'ill kill you some thin' happen to her."
Sag is still sitting on the counter as if nothing happened. She looks over to the dry pantry to where I am standing in the shadows. For a moment I think she knows I'm here. Did she do this for me, to show off? Well it worked I'm impressed, tomorrow when I come back I'll make a point to talk to her, get more of her story.