Nov 16, 2010

The Gangster

Chapter 1
by Misal Shujjat

“What should I do with you?” Tyler asks, his voice threateningly low as he regards the girl whimpering under the point of his blade with a dark look.

The pale light of the moon makes the scars on the back of his hands stand out ghostly white against his skin. There’s a long gash running from his forehead to his chin, cutting across his lips and nose and when he speaks, it makes his face seem mutilated. It’s a reminder of a particularly fierce drunken encounter with the members of the gang Al Capnico. An encounter, in which he had knocked two men unconscious, stabbed one of them and lamed another in the process. These scars are Tyler’s pride and the reason he’s nicknamed Scarface by his fellow gangsters.

The blonde girl sobs, “Let me go...please...just...just let me g-go...”

The sirens of the approaching police cars suddenly rip through the silent night; loud and predatory. Tyler is familiar with the sound and rather than frightening him,
it sends a rush of thrilling adrenaline through his veins.

He turns back to the girl and tilts his head in a moment of contemplation. Is she worth it? Should he let her go?

His mind answers for him; naah.

It’s too easy. After years of practice, all it takes is just one swift, calculated motion of his hand and the girl’s falling forward, choking and suffocating on her own blood.

Shame, she really had been quite pretty.

Stuffing the bloodied blade into his pocket, Tyler breaks into a run. He jumps over the low walls of the connecting alleys, putting a quick distance between him and the police cars. The sirens slowly fade in to the distance and Tyler slows his pace.

He’s barely walked a few steps before a hand spins him around shoves him into yet another darkened alley.

“What the-” Tyler exclaims as his head is slammed against the brick wall. Tyler struggles against the iron grip of this man, whoever he is; he knows how to hold a person down. There isn’t an inch of space for Tyler to move, his hands are pinned at his sides and his legs pressed at an angle that he can’t budge and it’s becoming increasingly hard to breathe.

“That girl you just slaughtered back there? She was my sister...” the man twists his arm painfully and Tyler holds back to the cry of pain-it’s a sign of weakness he will not show.

“So I killed her.” Tyler snarls, “What of it? You gonna kill me too? Hand me over to the police?”

“I don’t have to. I am the police,” the man replies, his voice going menacingly soft. “That’s Officer Howard to you.”

Tyler freezes. Through the darkness of the alley, he can only make out some of the features on the face of this man. Is he bluffing? Is he one of the newest recruits of Al Capnico and just messing with him?

Or is he telling the truth?

Either way, Tyler is trapped. If he can just reach his blade somehow...

He flexes his hand and Howard jumps on the move, giving his arm another twist, “I could kill you now...” he says, his voice tainted with something akin to madness. “If I arrest you, they’ll put you on might have a chance to get off without facing a death penalty...and I can’t have that. I could kill you here and say it was self defence...”

Tyler begins to panic just a little but his exterior is carefully controlled. “Go ahead then, why don’t you? I bet you’re too scared. You’re too scared after you saw what I did to your sister. Died so easily didn’t she?”

Tyler knows he’s pushing Howard’s buttons. He can almost feel the steam pouring out of his ears with his anger.

“Shut up!” Howard roars pulling him back and slamming him against the wall again and now Tyler can feel the cold metal of a gun pressing against his forehead.

“Look man...” the graveness of the situation begins to dawn on him and he struggles to find a way out.

“I said shut up.” Howard spits. The sound of police sirens picks up again in the distance. “I’m going to make you beg for mercy like you made my sister beg,” Howard continues, his hand trembling slightly with emotion, “I’m going to make you get down on your knees and plead with me for your life...”

Tyler feels flames of red hot anger lick his insides. No one makes him beg. And no one gets away with trying to make him.

Howard is holding him back with only one hand now; his other hand holding the gun and Tyler uses all of his strength to duck out from under his grip and brings his elbow down on Howards head with an echoing crunch. Howard doubles over with pain and falls to the floor.

Tyler wants to finish him off but the sirens are getting louder, closer and he knows he has to run. He aims a kick at Howard’s shin for good measure, revelling in the sharp cry of pain and breaks into a run.

He only gets as far as the end of the alley before the gun shot sounds.  


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