St. Louis, Missouri
Arsenal Street, Westbound
Amber kept the red Dodge Charger on the sidewalk despite the obstacles in the way. The agent's Grand Am kept pace, having less to avoid on the street. Allison called out street names as they passed them. Amber fought the steering wheel, trying to keep her car from hitting the passing walls and posts.
The Charger flew off the sidewalk as it entered entered the intersection. Allison cried, "Look out!" A beige Saturn passed behind, missing the tail of Amber's car by inches. Amber wrenched the wheel, turning to the right sharply. The rear fishtailed. Amber counter steered, preventing the Charger from spinning out.
The Saturn swung around, falling in behind the Grand Am. Allison looked out the back window. "Two of them now, Amber."
Amber giggled. "Want me to keep both of them on my tail?"
"Only if you don't kill us in the process."
"Right, no dying. Kind of had that one figured out, Allie." Amber kept the Charger on the street. She glanced behind to see how far her pursuers were. "Get me back on Rose's course."
Allison looked down at her map. "Okay, take the next left." Allison watched as the Charger zoomed through another intersection. "Amber, that was the turn!"
Amber turned left on the next street. "Where?"
"Back there a block! Where are you going?"
"You said to turn left!"
"I need to know before we hit the intersection."
"I did!" Allison huffed.
"I need it three blocks ahead. I'm kind of busy driving." Amber glanced behind her. "Hold on." She threw her car into a bootlegger reverse, wheeling around to go back the way she came. The Grand Am turned sideways to block the street. Behind it, the Saturn broke hard, covering the rest of the roadway. Amber stood on her car's brakes.
Allison tried to catch her breath. "What now?" She saw the agent in the Pontiac reach for his pistol. "Amber, what now?"
Amber threw the Dodge into reverse. The rear wheels left a layer of rubber when the green-haired girl stomped on the gas pedal. The agent in the maroon Grand Am pointed his pistol at the retreating Charger. The Saturn's driver put the car into gear. Two shots rang out. Amber cursed. "He got the headlight." Amber turned right disappearing around a corner.
"Turn us around," Allison ordered.
"In here?" The alley was narrow, just wide enough for the Charger with a half inch to spare on either side. Amber kept the Dodge travelling as straight as she could, scraping the walls on either side from time to time.
"Somewhere, anywhere!" At the alley's entrance, the Grand Am stopped, blocking the way out. The Saturn roared away.
"If I can get out of here, sure!"
St. Louis, Missouri
Wal-Mart Store #6032
"Sergei, there you are," Elena said as she spotted the manager.
The broad man smiled as he saw the blonde. "Elena, so good to see you. I trust that the cars are working well for you."
"I'll talk to you about the cars later. I need the other merchandise."
"You're not going to introduce me to your friend?"
Elena switched to Russian, "Cut the crap Sergei. I don't have time for it. The guns, where are they?"
"What ever happened to pleasantries?" Sergei replied in Russian. "It's not polite to speak a language your American friend doesn't understand."
"I understand perfectly well, Sergei," Rose said, also in Russian. "Elena said you had guns."
Sergei looked around. Seeing an associate, he went over to her. "Michelle, I'm going on a five minute break." The associate nodded and left. The Russian returned to the women. "Come with me."
He led the ladies to a back room of the store. "You'd be amazed at what you can store in here," Sergei said. He let Rose and Elena in a small office, then locked the door behind them. "Exactly what you asked for." Sergei unlocked the desk drawer and pulled out two small cases. He slid one to Elena and a slightly bigger one to Rose. "Go ahead."
Elena unlatched her case first. She nodded appreciatively once she opened it. "Good work, Sergei." She took out her matte black MAC-11. "I trust you have the ammunition for this as well?"
"From our hunting and outdoors section."
Rose opened her case. "A pistol?"
"Colt Python, .357 Magnum, double-action," Sergei explained.
"I am well aware of what the gun is and its specs. I want to know why the hand cannon?"
"I requested it," Elena said. "I said you might want one. I wasn't expecting something that . . . big."
"I thought that a Texan would appreciate such fine workmanship," Sergei said.
Rose rolled her eyes and then closed the case. "What do I owe?"
"It's already covered," Elena said. "Sergei, we need the ammunition."
Sergei reached back into the drawer and brought out two plastic bags, both with the Wal-Mart logo on it. He dropped them with a clunk on the desk's surface. "I can't get any more for a while. Try not to run out."
"We need two more items, Sergei. One," Elena started counting on her fingers, "a spindle of compact discs. Blank or otherwise. Two, a marker to write on them."
"I'll get them. I'll bring them to your car. No charge."
Rose started to get up. "A pleasure doing business with you."
"You've adapted well to your new home, Sergei," Elena said.
"I'll show you the back way out."
St. Louis, Missouri
Arsenal Street, Eastbound
Amber held her foot steady on the gas pedal, keeping the Charger backing down the alley. Allison gripped the dashboard so tight her knuckles were white. At the alley's entrance, the agent slipped out the passenger side. He steadied his arm on the Grand Am's roof and aimed.
"Amber, faster!" Allison urged.
"Duh!" Amber kept an eye on the other end of the alley. "Hang on!" The Charger broke out of the alley. A moment later, the Saturn rammed the back quarter of the Dodge. Amber fought to get the car out of its spin.
The Charger bounced off the curb, jarring the occupants. Amber threw the stick shift into first and stepped on the accelerator. The engine roared, then sputtered. "/Shimatta!/" Amber growled. She twisted the key in the ignition.
The agent from the Saturn jumped out of his car and drew his pistol. He pointed the weapon at the women in the Charger. "Get out of the car!" he ordered.
Allison opened her door. "It's over Amber."
"Go go go go go go go!" Amber smacked the steering wheel.
"Get out of the car now!"
"Amber, please," Allison pleaded. "Don't make things worse."
Amber gave up trying to restart the Dodge. She hung her head, then opened the door. Allison stepped out first, keeping her hands up. Amber followed suit.
"Turn around, hands on the car."
Both women complied. The agent from the Grand Am arrived. He patted down Amber first. "Watch the hands," Amber warned. She received a smack to the back of her head from the agent, who continued his search. Satisfied that Amber had no weapon hidden, he secured Amber's wrists in a pair of handcuffs, then went over to Allison to frisk her. The agent snapped a second pair of cuffs on the brunette.
"They're clean," the agent reported.
"Take them to the car."
The agent covering Amber and Allison glanced at the Saturn. "Yours. Dent resistant my ass."
Each agent took one of the women back to the Grand Am. Amber and Allison were shoved roughly into the backseat. Allison glared at both men.
"Hey, Rollins, want to make the call to Sexton?" one of the men asked.
Rollins removed a cell phone from its clip on his belt. "Yeah, sure." He dialled a number, then waited until the other end picked up. "Sexton, it's Rollins. Got the other two. Yes, we searched them. We're not amateurs. Oh, really? I've got them in Smith's car right now. Where do you want them? Okay, we'll take them there and search them again." He hung up. "Get this," he told Smith. "Sexton's about to get the other two." He slammed the back door shut.