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Skinner

To Sonja and Max (Private)

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Skinner    499

*As the sun begins to rise and the birds begin to chirp, the static of your radio pierces the crisp morning breeze*

Rise and shine, ladies. Max? Sonja? It's me. I hope you're monitoring this frequency like I told you to, the instructions I wrote on your arms were pretty clear, although you weren't exactly able to follow them in the state you were in. I trust you both enjoyed your trips? You've both walked through the doorway and seen what sweetwater could show you, and where it could take you. Now it's your turn to hold up your end of the contract. I'd be willing to bet that by now your bodies are telling you they need more, right? Shivers and chills? Headaches? Dizziness? Nausea? These are just your body's way of telling you it needs more, if you ignore these signs, these polite suggestions will turn into ultimatums from your body.  Just give in, I have what you need. Trust me.

*Glancing at the pen he used, he realizes that if they were sweating the instructions might have smudged*

Now, all I need from you in return is that favor we talked about the other day, okay? I don't need you to kill anyone or perform miracles, I don't need you to put yourselves in harms way. All I need you to do is go to the location I wrote on your arm and collect the product from our guy who made it. Let me know when you get there and I'll give you specifics if you have trouble finding it. Once you two have the stuff, I want you to take it to a town called Lopatino where we'll have a contact for you to hand it off to. It's as simple as that, and in exchange you get  a share of the product for your own... recreational use. That's a pretty fuckin' generous deal, ladies.

Don't fuck this up. If anything happens to that shipment, you're both cut off and all the begging in the world isn't going to get you a drop of sweetwater. I would warn you against ignoring these instructions but I'm sure your own bodies will be far more persuasive in motivating you to get to the product than I could ever hope to be. Just be cool and you'll both get through this just fine. Hell, better than fine.

*Chuckling to himself, he glances out the window and fixates on the pile of bloody rags and bandages his boys used as tourniquets when the shooting erupted at the Balota airfield. His smile quickly fades at the memory.*

One last thing, ladies. Don't get any grand ideas about some amazing rescue mission or special ops stake-out to try to hurt me or my boys. We've been in the game for a minute and we know all the little tricks, okay? We'll have eyes on every approach to the contact, and if we lose radio contact with him at any time before or after the exchange... we'll have people back where you call home ready to hurt the people you care about if we so much as see a bush move. The last time I had you two ladies in my presence, I thought things were going really well until those pricks in blue armbands showed up and started shooting at my boys. I had to smuggle you both out and to be honest it really fucking irritated me. I didn't take it out on you because I didn't want to sour the mood after our business arrangement had been agreed upon, but next time shit goes sideways I won't be so forgiving. 

*Pulling the knife he held to Max's throat, he examines it and recalls the dank shed he held them in*

Sonja, Max. I want you two to meet at the pick-up point and I want you to promise each other that you'll do exactly as I told you to do and neither of you will betray each other (or me) with any crazy shit. I want you to look each other in the eyes and promise, and I want you to do this with the knowledge that if either of you betray me, I'll make them watch as I rip the tongue out of her friend and let them bleed out. Then, I'll show you what I do to rats.

Not a word of this to another living soul. If anyone asks, you're fine.

You have 3 days, ladies, and daylight is a-wastin' Good luck.

*Clipping the radio to his belt, he turns to Dave and Victor. "It's done" he says with a nod*

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Jade    217

[align=left]Max would be huddled up in her room as the message blared through her radio, sweat caking her forehead as she listened cautiously. The threats and instructions that were coming through seemed almost too movie like to be true and for a moment Max hoped she was dreaming. The sudden silence that was left after he finished speaking made her feel uncomfortable and unsure. She pressed the button down but remained quiet for sometime before responding with a meek,

".....Ok..."

Not what she wanted to say at all.

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Skinner    499

*Skinner finishes tightening the knot on the bandages on Dave's shoulder. As Dave talks quickly into his radio, Skinner walks outside an notices the sun setting. Looking at his watch, Skinner frowns and unclips his radio from his belt*

Time's up, ladies. I'm coming down there. I'm going to assume that you got lost on the way, so I'll come sort you all out, okay? Don't worry about giving me directions, my boys told me which house you rest your bones in. See you soon.

*Kicking Stanley to wake him up, he motions for Julia and Ilia to join him as he walks south down the road from Stary Yarr. He loads a fresh magazine into his rifle.*

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Skinner    499

*As the full moon hangs overhead, Skinner and Stanley approach the north side of the house and crouch under the windowsill. Peeking through the window, they see the Shadows of two women walking past a fire, suddenly two more, then three stumbling around in the kitchen. Not expecting them to be awake at this hour, Skinner motions to Julia and Ilia on the east side of the house to raise their guns at the door. He motions with his fingers counting down from 5...4...3...2...1.

An eruption of gunfire is unleashed upon the small house. They open up with hundreds of rounds of ammunition from their Kalashnikov's. As the bodies start to drop, one of them falls onto the furnace and a fire breaks out inside. Despite the sudden gunshots and the fire from which they cannot escape, Skinner doesn't hear any of them screaming or crying in fear as he'd expected them to.

"Sons of bitches are cool under pressure, I can respect that. Maybe they've come to terms with their fate." He said to Stanley.

"I still hear movement inside!" Julia shouted from the back of the house.

"Diesel, kick open the front door, I'm going in. Stanley, Julia, anything comes running out that back door, you fill it with lead."

As Ilia kicked the door, a wave of heat and smoke came billowing out, Skinner entered with his glock in hand. As he stepped over the half burned corpses and saw the dead woman in the red plaid shirt and matching hat, he bent down and brushed her hair out of her face and over her ear. He strained to meet the gaze of her dead eyes, but the smoke was too thick. He looked at the woman's long nose and frowned, he tried to remember her full lips begging him to let her friend go, but he couldn't picture it. Frustrated, he gripped her throat and lifted her up to a sitting position.

"Oh Sonja, we could have done so much together if you'd just held up your end of the bargain. What a waste." He put three rounds into the woman's forehead and wiped the blood from his mask. Standing up, he heard something banging into the pots and pans in the kitchen. Stepping around the growing fire, Skinner carefully stepped through the doorway to see a woman in a blue hoodie with her back to him. Her torso was riddled with holes and her right arm was blown off below the elbow. "Max? What the f-" The woman turned and lunged for him as she unleashed a loud groan. Whether it was a groan of pain or the telltale groan of the infected, he wasn't sure. Unloading the rest of his magazine into her face, he caught the corpse and shoved it into the inferno behind him.

Kicking open the back door, Skinner stepped outside as the house was engulfed in flames. Julia and Stanley quickly raised their guns to his chest, but as the smoke subsided Julia pushed Stanley's gun aside and tossed her radio to Skinner. He presses down the PTT button*

"Victor? Look man, I've got some bad news about those mules from Balota I've been working on recruiting. We're going to have to find some more, these two just wouldn't listen to reason and do as they were told. I tried everything, but me and the fella's had to come down here and put 'em down. From what I saw there were at least eight, maybe ten dead in there. My two girls were among them. They're burnin' up now man, we're heading back up there."

*Tossing the radio back to Julia, Skinner holsters his glock and gets into the car, angrily slamming the passenger side door.

"What did you see in there, Skinner?" Stanley asked

*After staring straight ahead for a moment, deep in thought, Skinner ignores Stanley and turns to Ilia

"Diesel, drive."

The car peels out and streaks north up the road leaving the burning house behind them to fade into the foggy night.*

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