Summary: Hwoarang's night out with friends turns into a nightmare and he realizes just how ill-equiped he is to handle Angel's powers.
Chapter Warnings: Violence, blood and lots and lots of swearing
Feedback: Comments are welcome; constructive or positive. Flames are nice too because they make for something to laugh at and keep my feet toasty.
Special Thanks: To my beta Kat for betaing everything I send her, and listening to me talk her ear off about this thing.
Disclaimer: The characters found here *do not* belong to me. The story itself *does* belong to me. I am making no profit from this endeavour.
Notes: Heh, I feel weird again writing about gangs. I did my research, but sorry for any inaccuracies.
"Angel/Devil's words inside Hwoarang/Jin's head"
Please see the Index for more details and chapter links.
Hwoarang polished his cue and eyed the pool table. How embarrassing. He decided that the stripe in front of the corner pocket was his best bet and aimed to take his shot. Scratch. “Fuck!”
“Tough luck, ‘Rang,” Hitch said from the side. “I thought you’d be a challenge by the way you like to talk big.”
“Haw-haw,” the redhead glared at his friend while the other man lined up to take his shot. He was having his ass handed to him, and all the money that Doyon had given him for his work was flying out the window to pay for the bar tab. “Pool really isn’t my thing,” he mumbled when Hitch cleaned up the rest of the solids the table before he had another chance to take a shot. “Maybe I should quit while I’m ahead…”
“But then I’d have to pay for my own beer! No-no,” Hitch came up beside him with the cue in one hand and gestured for him to perish the thought with the other. “You’ve gotta keep playing. It’s the only way I can honestly say I kicked your ass.”
“Fuck it! Let somebody else play you. I’m just gonna watch,” the dejected redhead sat on his stool, nursing his drink while one of their co-thugs stepped up to challenge Hitch. It was all in good fun, and while this new guy was pretty good, Hitch still managed to hand him his ass as well.
“Isn’t there anybody here who can take me on? Maybe I just hang out with a bunch of pussies,” Hitch laughed.
“If Doyon is letting pussies do his dirty work, then I guess that makes our lives that much easier then, eh?” A strange man stepped up to the table. His green hoodie was a vibrant hue and he stared Hitch down, his eyes never leaving the larger man.
“The fuck are you Green Blades doing here?” Hitch asked, holding the pool cue up as the man advanced towards him. “This is our turf, or are you just looking to die?”
The man sniffed as several other men stood behind him. “Naw, we just felt like coming over to see how you guys were doing. You know, I heard that he’s recruited some outside talent. Fresh army meat, I hear. We just wanted to come down to say ‘hello’.” His arrogant smirk deepened as his fellow Blades chuckled and laughed around him.
Hwoarang was on his feet along with several of his fellow thugs and gathered at Hitch’s side. He could feel his blood coursing through his veins as well as a powerful energy as the rival gang closed in on them. The tension in the air was so thick you could feel it, cut it with a knife, but the only thing that was cut, as all hell broke loose, were the bodies of the Green Blades going up against the Devil’s Crew.
Hwoarang dodged a chair that came flying at his head. They were all brute amateurs; easy to predict, with a lot of strength but their style lacked the skill of someone who’d been trained, like he was. They knew how to swing a pool cue, but only Hwoarang knew how to dodge it, leap over their heads and kick their knees out while turning to his next opponent. Only a handful of members from each gang knew what they were doing, and after a few minutes of fighting it was only those members left standing.
Then things got interesting.
There were a few opponents to choose from, but Hwoarang singled out a tall man who seemed to be fairly well built. He turned his body and the man squared off against him, staring out from beneath his brow at his opponent opposite him with long, red hair. Red like his – it was fate. He rushed towards him, kicking himself into the air and coming down on the man with a bone stinger. His fist connected with the man’s skull and knocked him back. Hwoarang recovered quickly and switched his stances, surprised that the other man was able to climb to his feat and brush himself off.
“Nice move, cutie, wanna see mine?” he rushed towards Hwoarang, taking the Blood Talon off guard with a flurry of kicks at his face. Right, left, right, right, Hwoarang could barely keep up with the switch-kicks that the man sent at him. He slipped up when the other man snuck an axe kick through his defenses and he felt the blow of the man’s heel connecting with his head. He stumbled back, but the other man didn’t give him a chance to recover and was on him in an instant, knocking him to the ground and hitting him in the face.
Hwoarang did his best to block while kicking his leg out and rolling the other man over so that he was on top. “Not bad,” he said, spitting blood onto the man’s face. “But that won’t get you far with me,” he emphasized his words with a punch into the other redhead’s solar plexus. The man gasped for breath and he landed another hit right into his nose, breaking the bone before leaping off his chest to stand over his opponent. The man rolled onto his stomach, moaning in pain while he tried to climb to his feet, but it was obvious who had won the fight.
The Blood Talon turned to the last few people who were left. Mick was busy strangling someone with his braid, wrapping the long length of hair around the neck of his opponent and strangling the life out of him. With the same detached look as he had when he played his videogames, the brunette man flexed his arms, turning his victim’s face bright red before the flailing body stopped kicking and he released his hold. He looked up, as if noticing Hwoarang for the first time and gave the redhead a nod.
The pair turned to watch as Hitch tangled with his fight partner, both of them wincing as the older man was kicked in the stomach and stumbled to the ground. “Hit, c’mon! Don’t make us lose faith in you, man!” Mickey hollered to his friend. Any reply that Hitch might have had for them was silenced by the sudden, loud, fast sound of a semi-automatic opening up in the pool hall, and then everything went to slow-motion.
Hwoarang whirled around on his heel, a combination of street sense and military training kicking into effect and he spotted the Green Blade that had brought the gun into the fray before dropping to his stomach on the ground. The kid with the gun was firing wildly all across the room, hitting both Devil’s Crew and Green Blade alike. A barrage of bullets sailed over Hwoarang’s head with a ratta-tat-tat and the redhead sprang into action, lunging at the kid and knocking the weapon up to fire into the ceiling before ripping it away and driving his forehead through the kid’s face; knocking him out with one powerful hit.
The sounds of the wounded rose through the air once the gun had stopped. Those that had been injured in the original fight had been trying to get out of the way of the remaining fighters, but the gun had torn them up and left them sprawled all over the place. Hwoarang didn’t know where to turn to until he saw Hitch lying amongst the fallen. He rushed to his friend’s side, cradling his head in his arm while Hitch coughed up blood all over his good suit. “Hit! Hitch! Oh fuck, come on. TALK to me!” he yelled at his friend and quickly ran his hand over the other man’s body to find where he’d been hit. There was a deep, wet stain forming in two spots the man’s leg, although he was more concerned about the blood that he found pooling out of the Hitch’s chest.
“Gi?” his voice was weak.
Hwoarang tightened his grip on his hand and shouted into his face, “Don’t die, oh fuck. Someone call an ambulance!” Hwoarang put his hand over the wound, putting all the pressure he could onto it to try and stop the bleeding.
“’Rang,” Hitch coughed, blood spattering his lips. “Promise me…”
“No way, man,” Hwoarang yelled, pushing harder. “That’s what dying men say, and you’re not one of them!”
“Will you shut up and listen? I need you to promise to take care of Moon. She needs someone better… not that rucking Rora prick…”
“Alright, you’ve said your obligatory request, and now I’ve gotta tell you that I won’t do it because you’re going to live. Quit fucking with me, Hit!” Hwoarang felt a sense of fear gripping him. He’d known so many friends who died, so many who were too young and had been cut down right in front of him. He’d never been able to do anything, and it was just like the time that Dr. Guem’s wife and daughter were killed. It was just the same because he was there and couldn’t do anything to stop it. “Oh God, oh God!” He could see the look of death in Hitch’s eyes. He was dying. He was fucking dying! Hwoarang closed his own eyes and tried to think. Freaking out wouldn’t help; what could he do? He remembered the hospital and that voice. Angel had healed him, but… why wasn’t she talking to him then? Taunting, or laughing, or outright commanding him to take action? As the disturbing silence settled inside his head and his friend’s body shuddered in his arms the Blood Talon realized that it was up to him to draw out the power from inside him and use it to heal.
Taking a deep, steadying breath Hwoarang laid Hitch down on the ground and covered the hole in his chest with both hands, applying pressure but also focusing on the light that he could feel within himself and willed it to travel out to the dying man. The heat started deep in his chest, coursing around his heart and he could feel it welling up, filling him, although it didn’t take action until he willed it to move through his body and out of his hands.
‘Healhealhealhealheal,’ Hwoarang repeated in his head in a desperate mantra. “Don’t you fucking die!” he cursed at Hitch when he saw the other man’s head falling backwards. Hwoarang closed his eyes and cursed more. “Don’tdiedon’tdiedon’tdiedon’tdiedon’tdi
He could barely register Mickey trying to shake him, everything was so fuzzy around him and he was just so tired. “’Rang? Are you hurt? Hey, Hwoarang?” the brunette shook him until he turned his wide eyes towards him, the shock starting set in to his exhausted system. “Snap out of it, Hwoarang. C’mon…” he shook the redhead before pulling him to his feet.
“I…” Hwoarang said, looking blindly at his hands as Mickey put an arm around his waist. “I coulda saved him…”
“Are you hit?” the brunette quickly ran his hands along Hwoarang’s body, looking for blood, but came up empty. “Shit, you don’t look hit.”
“Hitch, is he gonna…? Why couldn’t I save-?”
“Look, ‘Rang. He’s going to the hospital, and I don’t think he’s dead. Let me get you home, get a stiff drink in ya. We’ll get back at those fucking Blades!”
Hwoarang still couldn’t comprehend how he’d failed. Angel had healed him so quickly when he was in the hospital; everything to do with her power worked instantly, and it had taken all his strength to stop Hitch’s bleeding just a little bit. He shook his head, leaning into Mick’s frame and let the other man lead him out of the bar. Any other time he would have shrugged off help, but at that moment he couldn’t trust his knees.
Outside they passed by the ambulance as Hitch was being loaded inside and the sirens began blaring as they rushed him off for professional treatment. They passed by two medics who stopped them, asking if either of them needed help, but Mickey brushed them off, assuring them that he was fine and Hwoarang was just in shock. Later on Hwoarang would be thankful that Mickey had had the wherewithal to get out of there before the police showed up. Even though Doyon had some sway with the department, he couldn’t have handled dealing with any assholes with badges right then. He sank into the back seat as Mickey climbed in with him and the driver sped off, just ahead of the arriving police sirens.
Hwoarang began to feel better after a few minutes and he half-listened to Mickey yelled in his cell, presumably to Doyon, before he snapped the phone shut and reached over to shake Hwoarang. “Yo, how’re ya doin’ there?”
The Blood Talon looked at him, “I… I’m fine.” The gamer seemed to disagree but he was distracted as the car pulled to a stop in the garage of Doyon’s building. The pudgy blonde was there, waiting for them.
“Mick! How the fuck is he?” Doyon half-climbed into the car to look at Hwoarang.
The redhead grumbled something and pushed him out of the way, climbing out and standing straight before turning to the two men beside him. “’M fucking fine, but mind telling me what the hell happened?”
Doyon got a dark look in his eyes before he nodded curtly to the driver and motioned for Mickey and Hwoarang to follow him up to his suite. The moment the elevator doors closed behind them he broke out in to a tirade over how the Green Blades were pushing their luck. Hwoarang didn’t really pick up on a lot of it, since every other word was either fuck, mother, or a combination of the two, as well as an interesting dysphemism involving a lawn mower and the unfortunate testicles of someone named Tito. When the doors chimed open again he’d calmed down and stomped through, his face was still beet-red but the outburst seemed to be out of his system.
Hwoarang and Mickey followed a few steps behind, a little unsure of that assumption.
He led them into his sitting room, angrily lighting a cigarette before sitting down and motioning for his two thugs to sit opposite him. “Alright, Hwoarang. I guess nobody told you, so let me give you the rundown of what’s gong on here. You’ve been keeping my guys in line and making sure to collect my money, but you haven’t really had any run-ins with the other gangs around here. Those motherFUCKERS were the Green Blades and it’s been nothing but one big fucking headache with them since their boss got replaced last week,” he snubbed his cigarette out in the ashtray before lighting another one. “Now, if I was a regular gangbanger, I’d be suiting up to hit one of their guys, but I’ve gotta ~negotiate~ with them now. That motherfucker thinks he can just take over the Blades and make up new rules? This is a fucking BUSINESS!” he snubbed out the barely-smoked cigarette, looking between Hwoarang and Mick for a reply. The two men wisely kept their mouths shut. “…I may have to make other arrangements with that prick. I can’t have his thugs popping my boys, and I can’t afford to let his boys walk all over me. Those motherfuckers…” he steepled his fingers in front of him and rested his forehead against them, thinking more calmly. The phone rang and Doyon grabbed it, snapping it open in one fluid movement before putting it to his ear. As he demanded answers from the caller, Hwoarang noticed Mick’s hand fidget before taking advantage of Doyon’s distraction and pulling his game from his pocket. The redhead shook his head at the gamer’s obsession, although realized that it was more of a comfort to hold it than play it.
“Well,” Doyon said, grabbing the men’s attention as he snapped his phone shut. “Looks like Hitch isn’t going to die after all. The doctor sounded like he’d won the fucking lottery or something he was so excited. Kept talking about miracles or some shit like that, so I figure… Hwoarang, I really gotta thank you. Hitch shoulda died right there, but something kept him going and I know it wasn’t Mick, so it had to be you – you and those wingy things of yours. Thanks for sticking with him, eh?”
Hwoarang nodded, his mind swimming with thoughts of Hitch and how he’d probably have to tell Moon what happened. “Yeah, well, I couldn’t let him die there, but… I should probably tell Moon what happened. When can we see him?”
“Eight tomorrow morning, guess they’re doing tests, or something on him now… giving him drugs?” the word seemed to light an invisible bulb above the blonde’s head and he cursed for effect. “Well, now that that shit is taken care of, I’ll just deal with the fucking Blades and their dipshit leader. Good luck with Moon. You’re gonna need it.”
Hwoarang nodded and rose to his feet. He stopped off in the bathroom, shocked when he saw his face in the mirror and the blood that was spattered all over his arms and across his face. He washed up and decided he’d stop by his apartment for a change of clothes before going to knock on Moon’s door. It wouldn’t help him if he showed up covered in blood. He wasn’t looking forward to telling her what had happened, but knew that it would be better coming from him than from Doyon, who’d just bungle it up and just piss her off even more.
~End Chapter Fourteen~
| Index | Chapter Fifteen |