tagRomanceGwen's Journey Ch. 09

Gwen's Journey Ch. 09


*** Warning *** Some bad things happen and some graphic violence occurs. If you do not care to read this, either stop now, or when you see violence occurring or imminent, simply skip down to the next "story break" (* * * * *). Thank you.

Gwen stepped out of the little bathroom, shaking in spite of herself. She'd committed herself to act, there was no turning back now. She went to the top of the stairs and looked down on the area clear of crates. Sergei stood in front of Steve, taunting him, and Gabrielle sagged forward in her chair, held up only by her bound wrists around the back. From a short distance, Gwen saw that she was remarkably beautiful, like a model in a magazine, or more likely one in a men's magazine. Peter stood next to Steve, a gun in his hand, though he seemed more interested in using it as a club. The other man, the one from the mall, was leaning on the work table, his arms crossed over his chest.

All of the men looked up when Gwen started walking down the stairs, her five inch heels making her step carefully and look like she was strutting for them. Little did they know she was walking carefully for fear that the bulky satellite telephone crammed into the back of her fishnet tights would fall out.

"You like to look at my pet," Sergei said menacingly to Steve as they watched Gwen saunter over to the work table. "I do not allow this," Sergei said, and he grabbed Steve's head in his hands and pushed his thumbs into Steve's eyes, making him scream.

Not his eyes! Gwen trembled, looking away from the horror, picturing Steve's soft, lovely brown eyes in her mind. She heard a thud, and looked up to see Sergei walking away from Steve, rubbing his knuckles. Steve's eyes were tightly shut, tears streaming down his face, but there was no blood there.

Gabrielle's head came up and she looked at Steve. Her out-thrust breasts jiggled when she sobbed, and Gwen used the distraction to take the phone from her tights and set it next to Sergei's car keys. Her hand had just moved away from the phone when Sergei looked at her, and he smiled.

"Come here," he said, and he turned back to Gabrielle. Gwen went to him and took his arm, her fingers digging into the hard muscle of his bicep. Sergei sighed and asked, "Pet, do you think those tits are real?"

Gwen appraised Gabrielle's breasts for a moment, comparing them with memories of her own mirror image, Ronnie's, and what she'd seen in pictures. After reflecting on it Gwen said, "Yeah, I think they are. They're damn perfect, but I think they're real."

Sergei laughed. "Vassily and Pyotr agree with you, but I have my doubts. Unless you know a better way to tell, I'm of the opinion we should cut them open and see for ourselves."

Gwen's heart began to thunder in her chest, and she flicked her gaze to Steve, whose eyes were open now, the whites bright red. He looked horrified. She knew instantly that Sergei was serious, and probably had been earlier as well, when he'd made the threat about the rat. Suppressing a shudder, Gwen didn't allow herself to think, and she walked over to Gabrielle's chair.

She hiked her skirt higher on her hips and straddled Gabrielle's legs, sitting on her thighs. She exaggerated the gesture, raising her legs high before setting her insanely high-heeled foot down, giving the impression of a lap dance.

Gwen took Gabrielle's breasts in her hands and she fondled and massaged them, ran her thumbs over her little light brown nipples until they hardened. Gabrielle must have been beautiful, Gwen thought. Gorgeous, not that she looked it now. Her eyes were little slits of sky blue set against blood red atop swollen and bruised mounds. Her probably dainty little nose was crushed, a nostril split, and her lips were misshapen and thick, and covered by open splits. Her eyes were on Gwen's, and Gwen mouthed, "I'm sorry."

Gwen leaned down and took one of Gabrielle's nipples into her mouth and suckled it gently, feeling Gabrielle quake against her lips. Pulling away with a slurp, Gwen looked back over her shoulder at Sergei, licking her lips and grinning slyly. "They're real, Baby. Real and tasty." She turned back to Gabrielle and began to suck on her other breast softly. She heard the softest of whispers as Gabrielle sighed, "sank 'oo."

Vassily muttered something in Russian, and Sergei backhanded his shoulder, saying something back to him, also in Russian, and sounding a bit angry. "Gwen darling," Sergei said loudly, "it appears you are making my compatriots uncomfortable."

Good, Gwen thought, and she hovered her mouth a millimeter over Gabrielle's broken mouth and mimed kissing her. Then, rising slowly, she turned and walked back to Sergei, her expression pouty, as though he'd taken her candy.

"You are a lusty girl, Pet," Sergei said quietly to her when she took his arm again. "I cannot wait to get you alone again." Gwen shivered and put her cheek to his muscular arm. It was easy to act like she was completely enthralled.

Pyotr said something in Russian, and Sergei and Vassily laughed. Gwen saw Gabrielle's head jump slightly, and she realized that the tortured woman spoke Russian. She did know everything about Sergei, and she had hidden it well, even under torture.

Sergei was still laughing when he explained, "Pyotr is of the opinion we should strip the fool and have you parade around the room until his dick is hard." He laughed again before continuing, "That will make it much easier to cut the little thing off."

Gwen bit her tongue before the "Bigger than your's" made it past her lips. How much longer did she have to play them along? She was running out of ideas, and she needed to buy time for help to arrive. Finally she hit on an idea and asked, "Sergei, can I see Ronnie now?" She could see Pyotr's head shake, and dread filled her gut.

"No Pet," Sergei answered, "Not right now. She is resting, I believe."

The satellite phone chirped, and Sergei went to the table and answered it. As he spoke in Russian, Gwen noticed that both Vassily and Pyotr were watching her with a feral look, the same look she'd first seen when she'd visited her father in a seedy bar right after her fifteenth birthday. She was a treat to them, sitting on the end of their noses, and the only thing keeping them from jumping on her was Sergei.

She was cheered by every second Sergei spoke angrily to whoever had called him, but the call only lasted about ten minutes, when Sergei returned the phone to the table. "I'm so sorry to have interrupted our little meeting," Sergei said, returning to the spot with Gwen, a couple of yards from the bound agents. "Where was I?" he asked rhetorically, and then he smiled broadly and exclaimed, "Oh yes. Shoot the girl."

"What?" Gwen shouted, looking at him with shock. Pyotr flicked something on his pistol and took a step toward Gabrielle, holding the pistol sideways, gangsta-style. "Sergei," Gwen said, grabbing his arm tightly, "I wanted to play with her for you."

That seemed to get Pyotr's attention, and he stopped and looked at Sergei for a decision. Sergei's attention was on Gwen then, and he stared into her eyes.

"Have you ever met, ever even seen this woman before today?" Sergei asked her.

"No," Gwen answered honestly. "She's got a great body though, and sometimes it's better to think through what you want before you do something that will screw it up." All eyes suddenly went to Steve, who had begun to laugh. A clout on the back of the head with the pistol silenced his laughter, and Sergei returned his attention to Gwen.

"This is wise," he said softly. "I didn't think you had the mettle to truly join me, Pet. I am pleased." He turned his attention to Pyotr and said, "After we kill the fool, we will be taking the girl with us."

There was a commotion behind them, at the fire door entrance to the warehouse, and Gwen put her arms tightly around Sergei's waist as all of them turned to watch the passage through the crates. A breeze blew through the warehouse, and they knew the door had been opened.

A figure moved through the passage, coming closer. Ivan staggered into the light clutching his blood-soaked belly. He muttered something in Russian as his eyes rolled back into his head and he fell forward to the cement floor.

Five men stepped over Ivan's body, walking into the light. They stopped, three of them holding pistols on the Russians, another a shotgun, and the fifth, a large Black man in fatigues, held an automatic rifle.

The oldest of the men, holding a silver plated pistol on Sergei and Gwen, stepped forward and smiled. His one brown eye twinkled with recognition, his other eye was covered by a black patch.

"As I live and breathe," the man, Kenny Esposito, said with a smile, "If it isn't little Maggie Coltrane."

"Hiya Kenny," Maggie said, holding Sergei close. "Good to see you."

"Uh, Boss?" the man with the shotgun called after noticing the people tied to chairs in the center of the room, but Kenny was already in motion, his attention on Gwen.

"Fuckin' Bitch!" Kenny growled, and his pistol fired three times before the warehouse exploded into general chaos.

* * * * *

"Gwen!" Steve shouted, leaping forward against his bonds. The five thugs opened fire, and Sergei had jumped for cover behind the work table. Gwen had simply fallen, and lay on the cold cement.

He saw Vassily, the man who'd captured him, stumble back, hit, while Vassily's fire exploded the head of one of the thugs with a pistol. Over his head a gun barked and the one-eyed man screamed as he pitched over backward. Pyotr was using Steve as cover. Great, he thought dismally, straining to tear his bonds and reach Gwen.

The automatic rifle was chewing apart the work table that Sergei was hiding behind, and Steve saw Sergei roll to the side and come up with his gun ready. The big man in fatigues went down with a clean hole in his forehead, the back of his head gone.

Steve felt a bullet pass too close to him for comfort, and Pyotr groaned behind him before crashing against the chair. He moved for cover and fell onto Gabby's chair, knocking her over to the floor. Pyotr took two more staggering steps when another bullet caught him and he went down. Seeing Gabby moving slowly, her body pressed to the cement floor, Steve was inspired and pitched over backward, his chair crashing to the floor under his full weight.

* * * * *

Gabby found herself on the floor, bullets flying. She quickly moved to where Gwen lay motionless, keeping her body tight to the floor. When she reached Gwen she'd gotten the leather strap around her wrists loose and she pulled Gwen over. She was pale, and sweat stood out on her face, but she was there, alive, and her pretty hazel eyes locked with Gabby's.

"Save Ronnie," Gwen gasped, and her eyes rolled up, back into her head as she passed out.

Gabby looked up and saw she was being ignored by the combatants. A guy with a shotgun had cover, and so did the other thug, armed with a pistol. Stetsenko had cover too, and he was looking at Gabby, no, she realized. He was looking at Gwen.

Vassily had found cover and was bleeding profusely from a shoulder wound. A few feet away from him she saw Steve's chair on it's back, and Steve's legs pitched up as he rolled a backward somersault and came up hard against Vassily, ramming his shoulder into the wounded man's midsection.

"Fuck this," Gabby murmured, and she began to run for the stairs. She saw Pyotr prone on the floor and without pausing scooped up the pistol from the floor next to him.

* * * * *

Steve slammed his forehead into Vassily's face, the head butt completely disorienting the Russian. Grabbing the big Russian's pistol, Steve swung the man around and threw him from his position of cover. Vassily stumbled less five feet before he was cut down by a shotgun blast. Steve checked the gun and found he had two rounds left.

* * * * *

Gabby was amazed at her luck, having made the upper hallway without anyone shooting her. As she threw open the door, she decided that the men hadn't been threatened by the naked woman running away.

Ronnie was curled up in the corner of the room, her hands over her ears. She looked up and saw Gabby, and a look of horror twisted her features. Shit, Gabby thought fearfully, how bad do I look? She held up her hands and tried to smile, which hurt like hell, between her torn lips and broken teeth. "S'okay Wonnie," Gabby slurred, and stars exploded in her darkening vision as something big struck the back of her head.

She hit the floor hard enough to bounce, and rolled onto her side. Pyotr, blood seeping from wounds on his thigh and midsection was looking at her with an expression of pain and anger. Gabby tried to roll onto her hands and knees, but Pyotr kicked her hard in the belly, lifting her up to drop hard against the floor. He dragged her to her feet by her hair, and Gabby felt his big hands close around her throat. He wasn't choking her, she thought with horror, he was going to crush her neck.

"Now you die, Cunt!" Pyotr roared.

"No," Gabrielle heard Ronnie say. "Now you die."

Gabrielle saw Pyotr's head snap around to look in Ronnie's direction, and a gun fired. When Pyotr turned his face back to Gabrielle, she saw only a gore-filled hole where his left eye had been. His lips moved, and as she gasped when his grip on her throat loosened, Gabrielle watched the big man crumple lifeless to the floor. Peter the Butcher was dead.

"Fuck that hole," Ronnie said, and she threw the gun away and dissolved into tears.

* * * * *

Steve steadied the pistol in his hand and leaned slowly out from his cover. The man with the shotgun was intent on someone out of Steve's view, easy pickings. Steve's gun fired once, and blood sprayed in a great gout from the shotgun guy's neck as he spun around and fell to the floor.

More shots fired, and Steve took cover again. After about ten seconds of silence, Steve looked out and surveyed the room. He could see all five bodies of the thugs, and the corpses of Vassily and Ivan as well. Sergei and Pyotr were gone.

Steve slid on his knees to a stop next to Gwen's body. Her face was very pale, but he laughed when she opened her eyes.

"Hi Steve," Gwen rasped. She was smiling too. "Are Gabrielle and Ronnie okay?" she asked before wincing in agony.

"Yeah, Baby," Steve said, keeping the tears from his eyes with sheer willpower. "Everybody's safe."

Gwen closed her eyes. "I did it," she whispered. "I knew they'd come to get me, and they'd come in shooting. They're bad guys, Steve."

"I know, Baby," Steve said, "They're dead now. You don't have to be afraid anymore."

"Will you hold me?" Gwen whispered, barely audible. Steve took her into his arms and held her, unable to keep from shaking as the tears streamed down his face. "I love you, Steve," Gwen sighed, and then was silent.

Steve laid her back on the floor, feeling her neck for a pulse, when he was thrown back onto his back. He looked down in shock at the blood burbling up from the hole in his shirt, and his eyes focused beyond the wound. Stetsenko stood there, looking at Gwen, forlorn.

"Pyotr!" Stetsenko screamed, and he ran for the stairs. Gabrielle appeared from the hallway above, still naked but holding a pistol. Stetsenko saw her and raised his weapon, and Steve took aim and fired his last shot, firing at the same instant he saw the blossom of Gabby's gun firing.

Steve saw a red flower bloom around a black spot on the back of Stetsenko's white t-shirt, and when he spun around to face Steve, he saw another, larger hole in the front. Stetsenko looked at Steve, and then at the pistol he held. He raised the weapon toward Steve, and Steve pulled the trigger of his empty gun several times, praying for a miracle.

A shot rang out, and Stetsenko pitched forward, sliding face first down the stairs.

"Deev!" Gabby shouted, dropping her now empty pistol and running down the stairs. She got to her knees next to him and pressed her hands against the bleeding hole in his chest. "Hang on, Deev," Gabby yelled, "Hoed on pweez!"

* * * * *

Gabby's face and body had recovered well in the month since the shoot out at the warehouse. She held a bouquet of flowers as she approached the door to the hospital room. Her kitten heels clicked on the hospital floor, each click coming farther from the last as she slowed. She had worn her prettiest blue dress with a big skirt, and her hair was done up nicely. She had done everything she could to look nice, even taken time to check her smile, her new teeth indistinguishable from her natural ones.

Taking a deep breath, Gabby pushed open the door and stepped inside. He sat up and smiled at her. He'd lost some weight, but having a hunk of lead pulled out of your chest would do that. Gabby felt her heart beat faster when she saw him, and even after all of the meetings with psych-eval, she knew that she was doomed to love him with all of her heart until the day she died.

"Hi Steve," she said softly, feeling shy for some reason. She waved with the flowers and set the vase on the table.

"You look good," Steve said, his voice not fully recovered, not quite as deep and rich as it had been before.

"Thank you," she answered. "You look good too."

"Have you heard anything about Gwen?" Steve asked, his eyes bright.

"Fuck you very much," Gabby said with a sigh. "Miss Coltrane is fine. They're supposed to release her from the hospital in about forty-eight hours." She waited a moment for that to sink in, and then added, "I'm doing well too."

"Gabby," Steve said with a sigh, "Gwen is special. I'm sorry that I feel like I do-"

"Stop," Gabby said, holding up her hand. "I know how special she is, Steve. I think I went farther with her than you have, if you remember. It's like Amelia all over again for me, Steve. I love the hell out of you, but there's always somebody better."

"They aren't better, Gabby," Steve said softly.

"Bet me," she shot back. "Gwen assumed she was going to get killed when she walked into that warehouse, and she didn't do it to save you. She did it for Ronnie. Then she endangered her life by trying to protect me, which couldn't have been easy." Gabby took a deep breath.

"Steve, the day Amelia died it wasn't because you had screwed up. We were all in position and everything was fine, going according to plan. Your plan."

"I heard that they were going to be searching your area, but you'd gone radio silent and I couldn't warn you. I left my position and was going to you when Orville got the drop on me. I would be dead if Amelia hadn't broken cover to give me a chance to escape, and when she did that..." Gabby looked away, tears stinging her eyes.

"If that's true," Steve said, choking on emotion, "then Amelia died to save you, and that is something I can live with far better than thinking I'd killed her through negligence. Why didn't you tell me before?"

"I caused the death of your wife," Gabby moaned. "Steve, how could you ever love me if you knew that?"

"Gabby," Steve said, "Gabrielle, Amelia laid down her life because we both love you. Why do you think I was at that warehouse?"

"To save Gwen," Gabby sniffled.

"Gwen wasn't there," Steve said, pausing. "Gwen went with Stetsenko to lead me to where you were being held, and Ronnie. We both know I should have called in a strike force the instant you were taken, but I couldn't do that. Any delay, and I would have lost you forever."

They sat in silence for a long time, and then Steve cleared his throat. "Do you think you could do me a favor?" Steve asked. When Gabby nodded, he asked, "Could you take me to see Gwen, please?"

* * * * *

Gwen stood in front of the mirror, surveying herself. She'd lost a lot of weight, and all of her color, but overall she looked pretty good. Of course, she'd been shot twice in the abdomen, losing a kidney and a piece of her liver, but hey, what the hell, right? An ounce here, an ounce there, it added up.

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