Ruth was in full party planning mode. The Oscars were on in about eight hours and everything must be perfect. This will be her second Oscar party but the first with such an unusual connection. Most of the people there won’t know the connection they just want to see the show and eat. She spent days researching the best recipes for appetizers and drinks. Each snack and drink were connected to a movie nominated with the most for the runaway hit Ike, the Story of the Camp of Death. It was the story of a man named Richard “Ike” Drake and his cult that worshiped death. Another movie based on the same story was called Summer Death Camp, but it had trouble in casting and tone.
Rachel did her usual workout before a class. She and her husband Isaak own and operate a school for the study of Krav-Maga. An Israeli form of self-defense. Rachel was born in Israel. Her parents where both Israeli officers in the defense force. They taught her how to defend herself from an early age. At 5’ 2” she needed to fight for herself. She met and married an expat from Russia named Isaak. Together they decided to move to America. Isaak was a former soldier in the Russian Army. At first, they wanted to open a deli somewhere in the northwest like Seattle or Portland. After a year they abandoned their dream to find something different. That is when they met David Warren.
The next day Alice woke up and looked around. The side lamps were broken, and the digital clock was off the side table. Somehow even the pictures on the walls seemed crooked. In the bathroom, she could see Max brushing his teeth. It was unusual to see him before he went for a run. He had on a tee shirt and a pair of boxers. Alice grabbed a robe off a chair and walked into the bathroom. She said, “no run today?” He looked at her and replied, “no, I think I got all the exercise I need last night.” She touched him on his side and he recoiled a little. She looked him over and said, “are you ok?” In answer, he lifted his shirt. He had the beginnings of some bad bruising and fingernail marks. Some of which had been bleeding. The new marks contrasted with the old scars. Max saw the look on her face. He said, “it’s nothing. Don’t worry about it.” Alice went to her knees grabbing his boxers and pulled them down. Then she took him into her mouth. Max reacted as if lightning had struck him. She started to move her head back and forth. Max looked down and said, “please no teeth.”
Alice and Ying went to Las Vegas for a Taekwondo competition. Ying was nearly ready to earn her black belt. Her teacher felt these competitions would help her prepare. At first, Ying didn’t want to do it. She wasn’t happy with the idea of being in the spotlight. Four years after escaping from being a sex worker she didn’t want to be recognized. But really, she was bought like livestock and raped for money. To add to this fear, she needed to wear red again. As a sex slave, her owners forced her to wear a red Japanese kimono despite her being Chinese. The kimono was tight and confining. When she was rescued she burned it and never wanted anything red again. But she needed something to wear under her uniform worn for her studies. She wanted something from Under Armor. All she could find that fit her was a woman’s red tank top. She liked how it felt and fit. During the competition, one of the competitors inadvertently struck Ying in the face. Before the ref could call the fowl, Ying struck. She dropped the Taekwondo and went into Krav-Maga. She had been training in Krav Mega for nearly four years and was adept at it. She dropped the helpless boy and was about to land a blow down below as Alice pulled her off. Ying was disqualified and told she had to leave. On the way out, a man followed them.
Four years ago, they all met in a group therapy being held by a man named David Warren. He used their combined grief to convince them to act. He would go on saying, “the justice system failed us, so we needed to act.” He trained them to work together and kill drug dealers. They were good at it. They killed many dealers. During that time, they found and rescued Ying from sex traffickers. They also rescued Jeff and Sue from their parents. Sue was nearly poisoned to death. Jeff had been raped repeatedly by a man who could give his parents what they needed to make meth. They broke his jaw in several places and cut his tongue out, so he wouldn’t talk back. They also lost so many friends. Bill and Nancy to a gang. Allen and Bonnie killed in Mexico. Christy and all the people who helped plan what they did were dead. David killed them all in hopes to cover his tracks and escape. David embezzled all of Allen’s money and fled the country. No one had heard from him since.
Ted cut a loaf of sourdough bread into neat and even slices. After cutting he laid them in a row ready for the peanut butter and hot pepper jelly. That will have to wait for the bacon. Ted is a tall skinny gawky twenty-two-year-old with sandy blonde hair and a pockmarked face from acne. About three years ago Ted came in for a job interview. He was looking to bust tables or something but, the cook had quit that day, and no one was willing to try. Ted was willing to try anything once, so he volunteered. The owner said over the phone, “kid just try and do what you can do, and we will see what we see.” Ted thought that could have been a little clearer but at least for now he had a job. They say the best way to learn how to swim is to jump into the water. Ted thought that was bull shit and that was the best way to drown. That can also be said for cooking. Before that day, Ted had never even cracked an egg. The first time he went to cook one he cracked one and a dozen others on the floor. Then he cooked his first egg with about half the shell sprinkled in. The waitress was a woman named Flo. She is in her seventies with a snow-white beehive. Fortunately, she knew how to make coffee which was the only thing coming out of the kitchen. Ted even burnt the toast. When all hope seemed lost and Flo was about to close the diner for the day, that is when Max and April walked in. Jeff could remember saying under his breath, “please don’t order.”
Bonus Story slightly reworked Re-posted from 9/20/2017
It was the first day of school for Ying. She was born in China and sent to live in America. Her family was paid for her and never questioned it. They sold her into slavery. She spent her first eight years in a sweatshop doing whatever she was told. Her life was shaping up to be bleak and miserable working sixteen hours a day. Then it became worse. One day a woman named Sequoia showed up to claim her. Sequoia was a short white woman with dirty long unkempt brown dreadlocks and the smell of marijuana. She paid the sweatshop owner for Ying and they were off. They ended up at an old colonial house with a wraparound porch. That day Ying was fitted with a distinctly Japanese style of kimono that was red and heavy. The kimono was padded to hide her age. They knew that some of the customers like them very young. That was the first day Ying was a sex slave. She spent years being raped by men willing to pay a price to have a young girl. She never knew any of their names. They were all “Johns”.
His name was Calvin, but they call him C-note on his block. He was a dealer. On his street, he controls the drugs being sold and who sells them. Anyone selling on his street must pay the man. A teen girl once tried to sell a little marijuana from the stoop of her house. C-Note caught her. He and his gang took turns raping her, but they didn’t kill her. She just wished they had. A week later she committed suicide. The Police keep their distance. Calvin knows how to insulate himself from the legalities of his lifestyle leaving the police to bust children. This leaves the police with a bad image in the neighborhood.
This is the first book after I ran it through the free Grammarly app.
Alice’s family’s business Beacon was pushing forward on their housing development. When finished it would be three times the size of the original town was before the Kia plant. According to the city charter such a project would require approval. A city meeting was planned. For this special meeting, the owner of the Beacon Inc. Jennifer Beacon was going to speak. The auditorium of the high school was used for the meeting with almost every original citizen in attendance. Mrs. Beacon brought her three daughters Eve, Mary and Joan. Before the meeting the Beacon-clan went to eat at the diner named for their lost sister. From the order window Alice watched the women. One of them look just like her mother. While the other three looking like an age progression chart going from young to old. She also thought how she could easily fit on that chart. There was a striking family resemblance.
At sixteen Alice was the typical all-American girl. Lean, fit with long strait blonde hair and fair freckled skin. An artist rendering of the typical high school girl. No one could tell she was a stone-cold killer. Alice kills drug dealers.