Ch.1 Mystic Messenger Mafia AU
Word Count: 1,609
It was what you had come to know as a typical night. The city was wet from the earlier rains, causing a moonlit highlight on the bricks and asphalt. It also kicked up an unpleasant stench, but one you had grown familiar with in all of your years of living here.
“Alright, kiddies. Time to work,” a burly man clapped his gloved hands together before throwing open the back door of the truck.
Barrels and barrels full of bootleg lined the inside. Thousands of dollars of product for the family to profit from, brought over on a meat truck they used frequently to disguise their hauls. But from where? The shipping yard, you guessed. Now if you could just figure out when it docked…
“What are you thinking about?” the boy next to you asked.
You hadn’t realized he’d been watching you. He scratched his hair underneath his cap before straightening it with a smile. Yoosung, or ‘Lucky’ as he was known, was always smiling. He seemed to practically skip instead of walk. Not the typical mafioso wannabe. But neither were you. In any case, he’s the closest thing you had to a friend right now. And you needed that.
“That it’s cold as shit and I wanna get this over with,” you huffed.
Lucky and some of the other boys popped up into the truck. They all shifted the barrels in their spots as if to weigh the contents before proceeding to move them. They had to roll a few of them down before you could start to dolly the liquor inside the small storage warehouse.
“Attaboy,” the driver said gruffly and condescendingly. His wide hand pat one of them on the back as they wheeled a barrel away.
“Turn the lights off, you nitwit,” the beautiful brunette, your capo-Jaehee, seethed as her heels clicked around the side of the truck and stopped in front of the driver.
“S-Sorry, right,” he nodded before scrambling to the front to turn the headlights dim.
“This is the last job for tonight, so make it snappy,” she played with her gloved hands, seemingly annoyed, “well go on!” she urged you.
You picked up the pace and wheeled the barrel Yoosung placed on the dolly for you. A single one wasn’t too heavy, but do 5 or 6 in a row and boy were you feeling it. Towards the end of the truck you felt beads of sweat on the back of your neck.
“What’s her deal tonight?” one of the boys whispered as you all worked to shift the hooch inside the storage room.
You glanced back to see Jaehee and the driver. It looked like she was scolding him, all while gesturing to the truck.
“Probably in a rush to get to the club to see ‘Pretty Boy’ sing his little heart out so she can drop her panties,” one of the guys joked and pretended to sing into a mic dramatically.
“Shut the fuck up, idiot,” another one smacked him in the back of the head, “if I have to listen to any more of your stupid jokes tonight I’m gunna stuff ya in one of these damn barrels.”
“Alright, alright, lay off,” he rubbed his head with a sour face, “I was only tryin'a lighten the mood.”
A flash of headlights washed over you before being turned off. You all stopped to watch a black car pull up by the truck. You and Yoosung both paused, gripping your dollies and watching as a man in a brown trench coat stepped out and straightened his collar. Bits of red hair peeked from his hat and a serious expression plagued his face.
“Shit, what’s he doing here?” one of the guys whistled menacingly.
Though you had only seen him a handful of times, you knew who it was. Saeyoung, the Underboss. Or as people liked to call him-‘The Mad Hatter.’ You believed him responsible for countless hits over the years. And now you all stood to watch, though some of the outfit stayed back in the warehouse, exchanging quiet glances and pretending to work.
“It’s a wonderful night, isn’t it?” Saeyoung and his two body guards met Jaehee and the driver.
“It’s a bit too cold if you ask me,” Jaehee replied.
“Ah, but it’s a clear night,” he looked up to the sky, “star, after star, after star. An endless void. If you look long and hard enough you can get lost in it. How many do you think there are?”
He returned his gaze to the two of them, his solemn face unchanging. Neither of them spoke.
“I asked you a question,” he turned to the large man, “how many do you think there are?”
“Stars? I-uh…” you could almost see the man begin to sweat.
“You can count, can’t you?”
“Well ya, but I-I don’t know-“
“Of course you don’t. There are too many up there. Maybe a simpler question, then? Since you can count and all..how many barrels am I missing from this truck?” he gestured to the meat truck.
“Missing?” his big belly heaved with his now labored breathing.
Saeyoung’s fist swung into the mans gut and sent him coughing to his knees.
“Now, now. You’re good with numbers, remember? I’ll give you a second to count them in your head before telling me. And you’d better tell me. Or things are only going to get worse for you.”
The man started to sob at Saeyoung’s feet, “I don’t know nothin’ about missing barrels I swear on my kids life,” he pleaded.
“I don’t like liars,” Saeyoung grabbed the mans hand and pulled the glove off, “shall we count together? Maybe that will help.”
He singled out the mans pointer finger, while the driver looked up to Saeyoung’s face in terror. His wet eyes were pleading.
“One…” Saeyoung bent the finger back in a swift motion. The snap of bone was like a dry twig breaking under your boot.
The cry in pain filled the empty street and the body guards stuffed the man’s mouth with a cloth before holding him in place on his knees. He struggled for a moment but quickly admitted defeat.
“Two,” another snap of his middle finger, “three…”
Even with the cloth to muffle, you could hear the pain bellowing from his chest. Tears streamed down his stubble-heavy face and his brow pinched together in agony. It took everything in you not to stop him. The cold metal of the gun on your thigh had never been more apparent.
“Four,” the pinky was the last one and it broke easily, “four barrels. Now do you remember?”
He let the mans hand fall before stepping back. The cloth was pulled from his mouth before shoving him forward into the damp asphalt. Shaking and nodding at Saeyoung’s feet, his right hand was a mangled mess now.
“Good, I thought so. Now you won’t forget that number,” he tossed the glove at the mans face, “get out of my sight.”
With his good hand he palmed the glove and clambered to his feet all while stifling sobs. Wobbling slightly and almost running into Jaehee in the process he started to walk fast in the opposite direction down the silent street.
“Hm…I changed my mind,” Saeyoung reached into his coat and pulled a pistol to aim at the man.
The truck blocked your view but the sound of the shot and the thud that followed were telling enough. Your legs were suddenly jello and a pair of hands held you up.
“Keep it together,” Yoosung whispered as he grabbed you. You were just noticing his eyes had glassed over slightly and there was an indent where he must have bitten his lip.
All you could think about were flashes of Saeyoung’s face as he held a gun to your head. ‘Lemme show you what we do to rats and pigs,’ he’d say, his sadistic grin being the last thing you see before he squeezed on it.
“Someone clean that up,” Saeyoung gestured to the body before turning to one of the men, “you, get this truck out of here.”
He handed a wad of cash to Jaehee, explaining that she was to deliver it to the man’s wife. It was to help her get by, at least for a little while, without a husband.
He took long striding steps back to the car. His gloved hand opened the door and he turned to you with a smile before getting in.
“Hey, Lucky! Both’a you, be in the wind before the bull arrives, huh?” he waved and got into the back seat.
The bit of food in your stomach was trying to make it’s way up but you took some sharp breaths to calm your nerves as the car drove away. No wonder there wasn’t a soul at the station willing to try and infiltrate this syndicate. They all either laughed at you or turned a cold shoulder when you brought it up. Not even the feds were willing to acknowledge this level of organized crime was going on. Businesses and citizens alike accepted that this was just the way things were. And here you were, a cop gone under cover. A rat. A bull. The regret was like a thick syrup that clung to you. This was the first time you realized you were probably going to die. But there was no turning back now.
“Come on, there’s still a bit of work to do…” Yoosung pat you on the back with a solemn face. It was the first time you’d seen him not smiling.