by Russell Paulette (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Chapter 2 - Storytime
The midnight commuter traffic around the destroyed
area of the subway was sparse, with barely any bodies
shuffling. This reduced the number of scents wafting into
DareDevil's already urine-filled, sweat-caked, scorched n
The sight of the bombing was that strange amalgam of
subway smells morphing onto the heavy stench of death and
destruction. Letting his senses flow past the anaseptic
gloves and hydraulic whinny of his partner and continued
to search amongst the wreckage and debris.
A rat scurried over ragged metal, desperately
seeking some morsel of food, finally stopping at the
wreckage of a trashcan. Skittering over the debris, the
rat found a small nugget of charred wheat and carried it
back to his new found home on the blackened skeleton of
the subway car.
DareDevil re-tracked the path with his senses and
noticed a quirk. He motioned to his partner and she
climbed over the wreckage, sifting through the maze, to
the burnt out shell of the ticket booth, where the Devil
was currently hunkered down.
"What do you need?" she asked, slipping off her
plastic gloves and running a finger through her black
hair. He offered her his hand and helped hoist her on top
of the ticket booth.
"What seems out of place with this scene, Misty?"
She shifted the revolver under her shoulder as she
crouched down on her haunches and surveyed the scene. "I
dunno." she mused, slipping her other hand out of the
glove. She looked at the blackened shell of the subway
car and noticed the sides of the car were blown inside and
upwards, lying around the wreckage in a haphazard fashion.
Scorch marks on the platform led away from the tunnel and
towards the exits. "I dunno. I guess the subway car is a
"How so?" he asked with a Sophoclean grin.
"Well," she continued. "the subway car was supposed
to be the epicenter of the explosion, right?" He nodded.
"I guess that it's kinda strange how the sides of the
subway car are blfour-hundred pounds.
"Well, I'm no munitions expert, but it would seem to
me if the car were the center of the explosion, the sides
of the car would explode outside, instead of inside. So,
I guess the bomb was on the platform.
"Which would put it where?"
"In the trashcan. Explains the star-shaped scorch
marks where trashcan used to be."
"What about the scattered debris of the car on the
outside; some of it's farther away on the platform."
"Well," she said, pensively. "I guess it tells me
there was two bombs."
"Bingo. That's just what I was thinking." he said,
drawing his billy club. "Right now, however, I'm also
thinking you might want to duck down and turn your
attention to the subway car."
Misty Knight drew her pistol as fast as DareDevil
pulled her down to hunch on the roof of the booth. Her
eyes darted amongst the wreckage as she saw two figures
climbing down onto the tracks and up on the platform.
"Which one do I take?" she asked. When she turned
her head, she realized the Devil had just leaped from his
hunkered position to the platform, placing him between the
two men and the exit. Amazing.
"Turk!" the Devil smiled. "It's been so long. What
no calls? No cards? You didn't even remember our
anniversary, did you?"
Turk turned to the Devil, handed his partner the
plastic bag with a heavy, metal form inside and yelled,
"Run, Gath, take whatever the hell this is!"
"Hiding evidence, Turk?" DareDevil lunged at Turk
while Gath made a break for the exit. Misty grabbed the
edge of the exit with her bionic arm and swung onto Gath's
trail, bouncing a few nine-millimeter bullets in front of
Turk turned away from DareDevil and reached inside
his jacket, producing a switchblade whose knife unsheathed
with a spwang!
He slashed down across DareDevil's chest as
DareDevil flipped backwards, feet connecting with Turk's
chin. "That was a close shave." he said with the
cheeziest grin on his face. "Man, Red, you have the worst
puns, I swear. The Spider's rolling over in his grave,
DareDevil pivoted with his left foot as he landed,
throwing his shoulder into his right arm while releasing
the billy club into the tiled floor. The club ricocheted
upwards, connecting with Turk's wrist, causing the
immediate release of his knife, and sailing back into the
Devil's waiting hand.
"If the ol' WebHead is dead, that is. I can never
keep track of things these days."
Turk went down to his knees, yawlping in pain.
DareDevil snatched Turk's good wrist and, in one fluid
motion, swung it into the small of Turk's back while
pushing him forward. The result was Turk's face slamming
hard into the side of the ticket booth.
"So, Turk, enough about me..." his voice turned
sinister. "What have you been up to?"
"I don't know nothin', man!" he whimpered, his arm a
flame of tendon and joint.
"I could have told you that...Oh!, you mean about
why you and a friend of yours were scouring around a
sealed crime scene! Here I was mistaken in thinking you
might know why you're here." On the word "here" DareDevil
gave Turk's arm an extra shove into his back.
"Ahhh! I don't know nothin'."
"Turkey, Turkey, baby! Don't you know you can't lie
to the Devil. He's the Prince of Lies, ironically enough,
and knows you know something." Shove; then calmly he said,
"I tol' you, man I don-" A shove pushed Turk's arm
furher as the pain traveled up to Turk's clavicle,
traveling down the length of his spine. "Look, man, there
isn't anything to tel-" Shove. "I would tell you if I
knew any-" Shove. "Okay, okay, okay. I'll tell you all I
knows." Turk was nearly in tears.
The Devil released his arm and allowed Turk to slump
against the booth, nursing his wounded arms.
"All I knows is that Gath and me, we was in Josie's
Cafe out there; y'know, the place you always bang heads
"Anyways, we're in there playin' pool, twenty a
ball, when we hears a commotion out in the bar. I'm
thinkin' it's you, so I peek my head out to see what's
goin' on. Well, this big dude-seen him around a few
times, didn't know who he was-grabs Josie by the collar
and stretches him down the length of the bar, dumping the
taps into his pants.
"Well, Josie's all cussin' an' fussin', sayin'
'Ain't no one here workin' for that crazy samurai; uh uhn,
no way!' And then this big dude stuffs peanuts int'
Josie's throat 'till he's pukin' Planters.
"Then, he turns and with this voice as big as the
city, he says, "I need two men for a simple job. I'm
paying fifteen thousand." My eyes went buggers at that,
and I turned to Gath, only he wasn't behind me, he was
actually walkin' out there.
"'We'll do it,' he says, and then the big dude
starts talkin' technical and Gath knows what he's sayin',
I ain't got no clue. Alls I know is we're gettin' fifteen
C-notes for findin' some sorta radio thingey."
"That's a touching story." DareDevil said, wiping
his eyes. "Really, brings tears to my eyes. Actually, it
should bring tears to yours."
"Why?" Turk didn't follow. DareDevil shoved his
red-cowled face inches from Turk. DareDevil could feel
Turk's labored breathing, hot on his nose and cheek.
"You're not touching a cent of that money. I'm
letting you go, but I want you to go to the closest
precinct and turn yourself in for trespassing." Turk
nodded, his eyes wide. "I just wanted you to know that
I'll be watching you. When you're out there, running some
scam, and you feel sweat on your brow thinking you'll be
caught, I'll be close enough to wipe your forehead for
you." Turk nodded again. "Get out of here."
DareDevil straightened and Turk bolted for the exit,
slipping past Misty who was standing at the threshold
leaning up against the wall.
"How long were you there?" he asked.
"Heard his story. Sorry, but Gath gave me the slip.
Think Turk will turn himself in."
"Not a chance. I'm more concerned with this big
dude Turk was talking about."
"I am too."
* * *
Karen flipped the switch and removed her earphones
as the capstan in the tape deck played a station
identification. She rubbed her eyes and blinked wide to
clear them of sore sleepiness. She stood, waving good day
to her producer and slipped into her brown leather jacket,
brushing a hand through her hair.
Sometimes, she couldn't believe Matt. She still
couldn't overcome her anger at his jealousy. Matt's not
jealous, she thought, correcting herself, he's just...
just...overprotective. She could understand his mega-
protector stance, what with his parents and everything.
And his being DareDevil, of course.
She laughed as she walked out of the studio and
slipped some quarters in the drink machine. As the
bottled spring water bounced at the bottom of the
receptacle, she laughed again. Now, for some reason,
thinking about Matt cavorting around the city in his fake
horns made her laugh, despite her anger. Something about
his face when he puts on the mask, she thought...
He's just too damned irrisistable, she concluded,
taking a swig of the water and walking towards the door.
Stepping out into the sidewalk, she stepped to the
curb to motion for a taxi. As a taxi pulled up to let her
in, a man with sunglasses and a devilish grin took her by
"Sorry, Ms. Angel, but I believe you have an
apointment." Matt smiled at her.
"Matt." she weakly protested as he escorted her back
into the WFSK building.
The taxi driver watched as his Angel was being led
astray by...him. Who was he? What was he doing with his
angel? Amazing trick, the little devil...
* * *
"So, can I take the blindfold off yet, Matt?"
"Not yet, not yet." She heard him say, almost seeing
his boyish grin. She noticed as he led her up the stairs,
finally ending their journey on the rooftop, that her
senses were heightened a bit, just like they always say.
"So is this blindfold some kind of 'in your shoes'
exercise, or what?"
"Frankly, Karen," he said, with a laugh. "I didn't
even think about that. I basically want this to be a
"Well, I hear wine glasses, so I assume it's a late
dinner or something."
"Or something," he said, removing the blindfold.
She turned to the card table set near one end of the
rooftop. Matt had spread a red and white checkered
tablecloth across it, leaving two small plates, each with
a fork and napkin, adorned with heaping piles of eggs and
bacon. Behind each plate was a wine glass, and in the
center of the table, a candelabra sat, motionless.
"It's...nice, Matt." she said, with a quirky smile
as she sat in the chair he offered.
"I almost forgot," he said, slipping a lighter out
of his pocket and igniting the three small wicks.
"Isn't it too early for wine?" she asked.
"That's why I brought this." he said, producing a
carton of orange juice. "Pure, one-hundred, percent
She giggled and looked down at the plate before her.
"How did you get all this up here, anyway?"
"Can't say; it's a trade secret. Let's just say a
Spider helped me put the curds with the way and the eggs
are re-heated in a rather...unorthodox manner."
"Care to explain?" she asked, taking a satisfying
"Well," he said, sipping the orange juice, " I
had a friend from Westchester down, and, well, he gave me
some interesting Cajun recipies I really want to try."
* * *
The intercom buzzed, "Mr. Norombi...uh, a Mr. Nelson
is here to see you."
"Send him in, please." Norombi said, waving his
bodyguards to the door.
Foggy opened the door with a nervous sweat emenating
from his body.
"Mr. ...um... Mr. Norombi, you wanted to see me?"
"Yes, Foggy, please sit." He stood as Foggy sat and
walked to his picture windows. "I apologize for calling
you in so early in the morning, but I have an apointment
in Tokyo for which I shall be leaving by mid-day."
"It's no problem, Mr. Norombi. I am here to assist
you with whatever you may need." Foggy said, with a
composure he wasn't sure he possessed.
"Well, good." Norombi said, with an abrupt turn. He
reached onto his desk and handed Foggy a file folder.
"This is an insurance claim and a possible suit agianst
the City of New York for damages."
Foggy glanced at the paperwork. "What is this all
"That subway bombing the other day, I'm sure you
recall." Norombi's responce was an absent, "Yeah, nasty
"Well, for the past year or two my company has been
here testing a new navigational program comissioned by the
City of New York for their subway system. Ironically
enough, the platform that was bombed was about three-
fourths of the way down a mile long stretch, or so, which
was using my equipment. I lost about $1.5 million and
three expert technicians in that bombing, and I think we'd
have a strong enough case to take against the City."
"Um...Well, Mr. Norombi, it does seem you have a
strong case, but I wouldn't want to push it, what with the
investigation going on and everything."
"Mr. Nelson...Foggy, I don't think you realize. The
families of those technicians want an explinations for the
deaths. My stocks are beginning to fall. Unless I do
something, my buisness ventures over here will fall
"I understand, Mr. Norombi."
"How is the Fisk Plaza leasing coming? This
building is far too unsatisfactory."
"Well, I've--" Foggy was cut off by the buzzer.
"Yes." Norombi said into the intercom.
"A Mr....Spades? is here to see you."
"Send him in." Norombi barked.
Foggy followed Norombi with his eyes as he angrily
marched to the door just as the large visitor entered. He
heard the two of them wispering and Spades handing Norombi
a small plastic bag with some black metal inside before
storming off. Norombi handed the bag to one of his
bodyguards and walked up to Foggy.
"With my buisness associates, there is a certain
look we give. This look is as good as your word and it
means silence. Do you understand?"
"I am giving you that look now." Norombi said, and
walked away, saying, "I'm afraid that I must take my leave
As the bodyguards escorted Foggy out of the office,
he glanced over his shoulder and saw Norombi slipped
through a door seamlessly hidden in the wall.
* * *
"Don, I'm glad you invited Doris and I over." Ben
Urich said, as he sat down and clicked his pen, flipping
pages in his stenographer's pad.
"I want this story to be told."
"Doris, honey," Ben said, a hand on her knee. "Can
you handle this?" She just nodded weakly.
"Well, where should I start..." Donald Witherspoon
weakly mused. "I guess it all started a little while ago.
Kathy told me an amusing little anacdote.
"'Well,' she said, her face an amusing little smile,
'I'm in the frozen food section, and I'm carrying a basket
'cause I wanted to make something special for that, and
anyway, long story short, I had it spilling to the brim
and a cantelope spilled out of the top.' She laughed as
she described the cantelope rolling away and hitting the
foot of, who she described as, a burly, attractive young
"He leaned down and handed the cantelope to her and
she smiled and picked out the ice cream and went on her
way. When she finally reached the checkout, as she
reached in the little fridge for a Fruitopia, she noticed
this man was standing behind her. They made small talk,
and as she had everything scanned in, she realized she had
enough cash to pay for it all, but was short the price of
the Fruitopia; she'd left her change purse at home,
accidentally. Anyway, this guy offers to pay for it and
he helps her carry her bags to the car. He had a carton
of milk, or something.
"Anyway, as she's driving home, she noticed the guy
was a couple cars behind, but with people turning, he was
right behind her. He smiled and waved and she returned
his courtesy, feeling a little worried, but as she turned
down our street, he kept on driving.
"About a week later, our phone gave out, so I told
her to call the phone company and they'd send a guy down.
Well, turns out this guy worked for the phone company.
She let him in and they laughed, remembering the Fruitopia
and everything, and she served him tea and they small
talked some more, and he fixes the phone.
"About a week after that, we started getting weird
messages on our machine. At first it was nothing. Then,
whoever it was started leaving random song quotes. By the
time she finally told me, the message was a burbled
recording of the Beatles' chorus in "Baby, You're a Rich
"So," Ben said, writing furiously. "You think the
phone guy was leaving the messages."
"Of course I do; I know it was him who--" he choked
up and stopped himself.
Doris asked, "What was--what was the chorus to that-
that Beatles' song?"
He stopped and looked up at her, a dark circled,
pain-filled look. He spoke the lines in a dead monotone.
"'How does it feel to be one of the beautiful people?'"
The room was silent as Donald wiped away the clear
lines of saline flowing down his cheeks.
"It's kind of hard to talk about it."
"I understand." Ben said, putting the notepad and
pen away. They continued the rest of the afternoon
talking about Doris' recovery, not mentioning a word of
* * *
Karen walked into the apartment, charmed beyond
belief. This time yesterday she was ready to kill Matt,
and today there was no one who she would have rather
She checked the clock, and although it was about
mid-day, she felt energized despite her expected
She checked the machine, washing her hands and
grabbing and apple and a knife.
"Karen...hey, this is John. Give me a call when you
get home, I've got some updates you'll probably be
"Karen...hi, this Artie, just seeing if you were
"Matt...Foggy, call me."
"Matt, dis be Remy. T'anks for calling in de marker
dis morning. Now, we even."
The next message was a grainy recording of some new
song she remebered from that new Shakespeare movie she and
Matt went to see.
"Angel...hold onto me...love is all around you..."
I love Matt, she thought, as she picked up the phone
and called John back, writing the messages down for Matt
and erasing the machine.
Chapter 3 coming soon...