Rattling Snakes Cage 2 Ch. 09byshandal©
Patrick and Snake fight. Who will win?
Love is worth fighting for, but will it give Patrick the edge?
Patrick slid on his bottom over the front of the car and into the front door as quietly as he could, Jerry followed. They crept stealthily down the hallway and towards the room that the voices were coming from. There seemed to be lot of shouting, loud deep voices kicking off, and the two men pushed the door that stood ajar to the room more open and slipped inside.
The scene that was in front of them was of a couple of men laying wounded on the floor, blood dripping from wounds, a few sitting with their hands on their heads surrounded by a crowd of men holding guns pointed at them, and at the end of the room, facing them was Snake, holding Rachel in front of him, a wicked looking knife to her neck. "Ah....look at what the cats dragged in.......hello Patrick, thought you were locked away?" Snake drawled.
All eyes in the crowed room turned towards Patrick and Jerry, some guns swivelling around pointing at them.
"Nick...." Patrick nodded towards Snake, not letting him see any emotion at the fact that his old friend but now deadly enemy had Rachel and was holding a knife to her throat.
Looking around the room at the men holding guns, "Mark.....Brian....John....." he acknowledged those he knew, "What's going down here?"
John stepped forward. "This bastard killed my dad.....he's got my cousin......we're going to kill the fucker....."
Patrick stepped forward into the middle of the room, guns still pointing at him, his heart beating heavy in his chest, sweat starting to drip down his back, "Sorry to hear that John.....but Snake is mine......don't get blood on your hands lad......its not worth it......believe me....."
Just then the door behind them opened and in walked Tony, the redheaded girl wrapped up in a thin blanket in his arms. There was a murmur that ran through the room at the sight of her in the state she was, dirty, emaciated, bruised and nearly unconscious.
Patrick looked from the sight of Tony carrying the woman to Snake, "My God Nick, what have you done?"
Rachel gasped as the knife went tighter against her skin, the blade slightly breaking the skin, a drop of blood trickling down her throat, "You always were a stupid bugger about the bitches.....too much kindness....you like this one?" and he pulled his hand tighter, making Rachel gasp, "Want her in one piece? Then call off your dogs and tell them to fuck off......"
"They're not mine Nick.....and this is between you and me. Let Rachel go and you and I can fight it out just between us.....man to man....."
"Just you and me......don't make me laugh......" looking around at the crowd of men in the room, Snake snarled, "The moment I let her go they're going to kill me......"
Patrick looked at John, "Tell them to put the guns away John......"
The angry young man stepped in front of Patrick, his face contorted with rage, "Who are you to give me orders......this fucker killed my dad....I don't fucking care about any fucking woman......" and he turned around taking aim at Rachel and Snake.
"STOP....THINK....YOU KILL THEM AND GET CAUGHT YOU GET PUT DOWN FOR LIFE, THROWING IT ALL AWAY......AND FOR WHAT......YOU WANT TO DO THAT TO YOUR MUM.....HASN'T SHE LOST ENOUGH?"
Patrick watched as Johns gun wavered. Stepping forward and placing his hand on the young mans shoulder he told him in a quieter voice, "I've screwed up my life John.....don't do the same...get the girl to a hospital for some medical help....look at her...she needs you....your mum needs you." Looking around the room at the men as they stood there watching him, some guns now pointing down he told them, his natural ability at leading men taking over, "Let me deal with Snake....take the drugs and go.....I promise you the madness all ends tonight....go home to your families without any deaths on your hands.....you're not killers."
Some of the men stepped back, John still stood pointing his gun at Snake and Rachel, who stood at the end of the room, the knife at her throat, held in front of the evil man, her eyes wide with fear.
Patrick continued, "John believe me I don't want you to end up inside....its hell on earth....the old Bill are looking for me as we speak, wanting to put me back inside......twenty years....if you kill him and they get you you'll get thirty or more.....you'll be an old man when you get out.....don't throw it all away." And he reached around and slowly removed the gun from John's wavering hand. Stepping forward towards Snake he said, "You and me Nick.....knives....I promise you if you win that will be the end of it....you always were a better fighter than me...you'll have the advantage...."
Out of the corner of his eye he could see some of the men grabbing coke and bags of grass. "Come on Snake, you a coward?....are you showing your yellow streak in front of so many?.....scared I'll beat you?" and he put Johns gun down on the table next to him.
"You'd never beat me Patrick....you don't have the killer instinct....I'd win every time."
"Prove it Nick....or are you all mouth."
"I win, the woman is mine....to do with what ever I want."
"I win, I burn down this drug factory and put you out of business....."
"I'm going to gut you Curtis....I should have done it back in that flat eight months ago...."
"Yeah Nick you should have.....but you didn't, and now it's just you and me....."
"Outside it is....."
Jerry stepped out the door and with Davy and Danny pushed the crashed car away from the front door. Men streamed out, hands full of drugs, forming a big circle on the bare grass. Snake, still holding Rachel in front of him pushed her forward and they walked out the door to stand in the centre of the group of men, Patrick walking in front, removing his shirt and rolling it around and tying it over his left arm as protection. His naked skin glistened in the crisp night air, and his face had taken on a tight hard look as he stood ready, knife gripped in his raised right arm, feet slightly apart, balanced. Without looking away from Snake he told John and Tony, "Go....get the girl to the hospital....NOW."
Leaving the scene and getting into the car they drove off, along with one other car load of men, and some of the injured men hobbled off into the night, climbing into their own cars. A handful of men stayed to watch the fight, along with Jerry Davy, and Danny and a deathly silence descended over the scene.
After a few tense minutes Snake threw Rachel to one side, and Patrick heard her scream as she fell, but didn't take his eyes away from the man charging at him, the deadly knife swiping down towards his face.
He stepped back as the tip just missed him and took a swipe himself at the moving body coming at him, but Snake had anticipated it and moved to the side, bringing up his hand, the blade in it catching Patrick's side, cutting a small slice that stung like hell. Hearing Rachel's scream at the sight of him being wounded told him she was alright and he swung his own knife out, moving forward, catching his opponent on his arm tearing Snakes shirt.
Panting with exertion the two men circled each other, knives held ready, eyes locked, in deadly battle.
Snake suddenly swept forward with an upper cut movement, Patrick raising his shirt wrapped arm to deflect the deadly knife coming at him, the blade cutting through the fabric and slicing his arm, but his other arm came up and caught Snake in the side and the man grunted with the pain as he staggered back, taunting Patrick with, "Learnt to do your own fighting inside Patrick? Not relying on others anymore to do your fighting for you?"
Not even bothering to answer him Patrick stood chest heaving, blood oozing from his wounds, eyes narrowed ready to carry on the fight.
In a mighty roar Snake surged, grabbing Patrick's hand that held the knife with his free one and Patrick did the same, holding Snakes, and the two men struggled together for supremacy, trying to get the better of the other.
Rachel watched from her place on the ground, her heart in her mouth, as she watched the two men fighting, Patrick's naked torso glistening with sweat, the blood red against his prison pale skin. Slowly she watched as Snake seemed to get the better of Patrick, his greater height and strength making Patrick bend backwards, twisting his arm down to the side. Looking wildly around at the men who stood watching she saw Jerry holding his knife loosely at his side, his face one of shock at the sight of the two men fighting. Lurching to her feet she grabbed the knife from Jerry's hand and ran towards Snakes back as he managed to get the advantage over Patrick, his arm raised up to bring his knife down into his chest.
Plunging the knife in her hand into Snakes back she collapsed on the floor and watched as he staggered, tripping over the crouched Patrick and then fell onto the ground.
Jerry ran over to Patrick, helping him up, "Quick we need to leave....the police will be here soon, some of Snakes men might phone them and there'll be questions asked at the hospital about the girl and what happened."
Getting up off his knees Patrick rushed over to Rachel, "You alright?....did he hurt you?" and he hugged her, kissing her hard on the mouth, "My God when I saw him hold that knife to your throat......"
"Are you hurt bad?" She looked at the wound with blood seeping out of it at his side.
"It's not bad, just a nick."
"Come on you two lets get a move on...."
Davy grabbed Patrick's arm, "What about the money?"
Jerry pushed Davy back, "Are you mad....forget the fucking money....lets go."
"No, he's right.....lets get the money.....then we burn down the place." And giving one last look at Snakes body laying on the grass he put his arm around Rachel and made his way to the front door, the four men following. They made their way back into the house and up the stairs into Snakes office as fast as they all could.
Pushing aside the bookcase Patrick stepped forward and turned the dial on the safe while the rest watched. Opening the door of the safe Patrick looked in, Davy peering over his shoulder. A low whistle escaped Davy's lips. "Wow looks like more than a million Patrick and pushing past the injured man started to pull the money out in fists full of wads of notes.
"We need something to put it in.....Danny grab a black plastic bags from the cupboard......Jerry go downstairs and get a pile of inflammable stuff in a pile in the lab room. We need to light it as we leave.....set another one in the main hallway if you have time." And he started along with Rachel to pile up newspapers, wooden chairs, curtains and anything they thought would burn to make a small bonfire in the centre of the room as Danny and Davy grabbed the money from the safe and shoved it in the empty bin bag from the safe.
Moving quickly they lit the paper in the centre of the pile of stuff with Danny's lighter and then ran out the room and down the stairs to join Jerry as he finished making a similar pile in the hallway. Lighting that with the lighter they left the house and ran, Davy carrying the now stuffed bag, to the van, climbing in and made their way out of the grounds and down the lane, turning into the long country road away from the sound of the Police cars they could hear coming towards them from the other direction.
As the van made its way down the twisting country road in the dark towards the M23 and Brighton they could hear the wail of sirens in the distance. Fire engines, ambulances and Police cars.
Rachel and Patrick sat on the floor of the moving van next to the two bikes that lay in the centre, arms around each other, hugging and kissing. Davy sat with Jerry leaning against the side, semi counting out the money. "Jesus look at it Jerry.....must be close on a million and a half....."
"Drug dealing pays....."
"Fucking too true mate.....fucking too bleeding true."
Patrick gently stroked Rachel's neck where the small wound from Snakes knife had dried over with blood, "Does this hurt....do you need a doctor? I nearly died when I saw him hurt you."
Looking at the wound in his side and then his arm, "These need stitches."
"Nah....just a plaster. They're not deep...."
"Patrick you need stitches they're bad...."
"No time....we need to get down to Brighton.....the boat is waiting to take us out of the country.......you are coming with?.....aren't you?" and he looked deep into her eyes.
Hesitantly she looked at him and murmured, "Patrick.....I don't know."
He looked back at her, "Rachel I can't stay here....I've escaped from Prison and if they catch me they really will lock me up and throw away the key....." and then in a quieter voice, "and I've just killed a man..."
"But it wasn't you....it was me...." And then clamping her hands over her mouth as she realised what she had said was true, "My God I've just killed a man....I stabbed Snake."
Patrick watched as the true horror of what she had done sunk in, then pulled her into his embrace whispering, "and saved my life......I love you sweetheart....so much. But if we are caught it was me....remember that. It was me that stabbed him." And he slightly shook her by the shoulders looking deep into her eyes, "Remember it was me, not you.....understand?"
Back at the site of the drug lab paramedics knelt over the prone body of Snake working to save his life as a couple of cops stood nearby. Fire-fighters were trying to stop the fire that had taken hold of the building as flames leapt up into the night, the sound of burning and crackling wood and the flames lighting up the small group of people trying to work on the body on the grass. "He alive?"
"Just....we need to get him over to the hospital as quick as we can.....the wound has punctured a lung and broke a few ribs. He's losing blood fast." And they started to stabilise their patient as one of the police lifted up his radio and called in the report.
The other policeman said to his partner after he finished his call, "Its all go tonight. What with that mass escape from the nick and now this.....seems all the nutters are loose tonight."
"Yeah...." And they turned and watched as the firemen stood pointing their hoses at the burning building, "Hope they get it under control soon. I would hate to see these woods go up."
One of the ambulance men asked as they moved the unconscious man to the ambulance on the stretcher, "You know who this man is?"
"Yes, he's a notorious gangster and drug dealer called Nick Armstrong....looks like a turf war might have started..."
And they put the barely breathing Snake into the ambulance and drove away sirens blaring followed by the two cops in the police car.
Johns mum hovered nervously behind Tony as he carried Maria into the bedroom of her small flat and wringing her hands told John, "She should be at the hospital John, she needs medical help."
"Sorry mum we can't.....if we do that there would be too many questions we can't answer...and Tony and myself would end up arrested."
"But she's in a bad way."
"I know but wasn't your friend Rita a nurse once?"
"That was a few years back John."
"Can you phone and get her over here....see if she can help?"
"Are you sure John....maybe of we took her to the hospital and left her on the doorstep...."
Tony turned around and said, "NO.....Get the damn friend who was a nurse....we need to look after her for Gods sake...go get the woman."
When he was left alone with Maria he sat stroking her hair back from her face, "Can you hear me Maria....I promise to get you help."
Flickering eyes opened and she looked up at him a slight smile on her face, "You did it, you got me out of there....."
"Damn right and I promise you you're going to be ok....we're getting a nurse to look at you...I wont let anything bad happen to you ever again."
Gripping hold of his hand she told him, "I believe you....what ever you say you'll do....you're my hero."
"And my responsibility from now on....forever."
Rachel looked down at the nasty slash on Patrick's side when he winced, "Its bleeding again.....you need stitches Patrick....you're losing blood." And she held the torn bloody prison shirt against his side trying to stop the slow flow of red liquid from his side."
Jerry crawled over to them and took a quick look, wincing as he saw the wound. "She's right Patrick, it's a nasty one...."
"When we get down to Brighton Marina there's a twenty four hour superstore there, someone can get out and buy a load of first aid stuff and patch it and my arm up before we go on the boat."
"I don't know....it looks nasty...you could get an infection."
"Just get me to the boat and away from here.....we can worry about it all once we hit France."
"Patrick...." Rachel started to say, but was stopped by a kiss.
"Whenever we're together I'm injured. First the beating from Snake when we met, and now this."
Giving him a half hearted smile she whispered, "I just think you do it for attention."
And the van kept on its journey taking the fugitives south towards where the Merc was parked and the fresh change of clothes. Ever closer to the last part of their escape plan.