Jan Caufield looked down at Brian and chuckled before she shifted the plastic cup from her right hand to her left. She pulled up the tight sleeve of her hot pink top and gave a quick flex for her friend's camera. Brian watched Jan's toned arm grow right before his eyes and his camera lens. Her biceps rose up and up. It seemed like it should have stopped growing several different times, but the peak just kept going higher, emerging like a beast from some hidden lair. Her triceps expanded filling out the impressive shape until her arm was now nearly 15 inches of pure female muscle power. She held it for a second or two before relaxing and getting back into her conversation. Brian wondered where the muscle went. It was amazing.
He didn't have to go far to find his next video subject. Jenny Hood was talking with a group of friends when Brian came over with his camera ready. He tapped her on the shoulder.
"Hey, Jenny, just a quick one. Let me see the guns!"
At 6'0", Jenny Hood was about half an inch shorter than Jan, but a full inch and a half taller than Brian. She looked at him and tossed her blond hair back over her well muscled shoulder. "Brian, you are such a perv."
"I am not", Brian defended himself. "Besides, you know you want to."
Jenny leaned down a little, and flexed her right arm. Jenny's arm wasn't as cut as Jan's, but it was massive. Jenny had a thick powerful musculature that she had built over years of track and field competition. She was a one of the best field athletes in the country, and her body was on display for Brian's camera. He had to pan back in order to get all of Jenny's arm in the picture. He had to get the image of Jenny's arm, thick traps, and perfectly capped delts in the picture. Her shoulders were something to behold. She held the flex for a while. He had seen Jenny exercising, but he had never seen her flex. He reached past his camera lens. He had to stretch his fingers to get them over the crown of her biceps while putting his thumb underneath her triceps. He gave a it a squeeze. There was no give. Jenny tightened her fist and flexed even harder. Brian got a little light headed when he felt her already big muscle expand just a little more under his fingers. He didn't get to enjoy it for too long. Jenny slapped his hand away.
"I said you were a perv", she laughed and took a sip of beer from a plastic cup. She was one of the few people at the party old enough to drink legally.
Brian was about to walk away, but he had a stroke of genius. He reached out and took Jenny by the hand. "Here come with me a minute. Won't take long."
"I'll be right back", Jenny told her friends while Brian dragged her to another side of the room. They had to weave between groups of people and around some furniture, but finally they were there. He let go of Jenny's hand and backed up a little. "Okay, Brian. What are you doing?"
"Perfect. Stand right there." He stepped past her and to the right. He reached past a guy and took Jan by the elbow.
"Excuse me", Jan told a guy she bumped in to while Brian pulled her out of a group. She turned towards Brian. He was sure that he wouldn't have liked the look she was giving him, so he didn't look at her until he had switched on his camera.
"I've got you separately. Now I have to get you both together."
"What are you talking about?"
Brian laughed behind the camera. "Wow, that is already perfect. The two tallest best looking girls at the party are about to flex for the camera", he said from behind the viewer.
Jan and Jenny looked at each other and laughed. Brian was usually the sort of guy who could blend into the crowd, but once you knew him, it was impossible to overlook him. He was a steady guy, but he had a weird sense of humor. They decided to go along with it.
Jan raised her right arm to shoulder and held it out there for a second or two before curling it and flexing. Her biceps grew as her arm bent. For a few moments it seemed like the muscle wouldn't stop. She paused her elbow at ninety degrees before she bent her elbow more making her bicep pop and making it even sharper. The definition and striations on the two heads were amazing.
Jenny flexed her left arm hard from the start. She usually didn't flex in public. It was something she did in the mirror at her apartment. It was sort of fun to be doing it now. Guys and gals were turning and starting to notice the little muscle show. Jenny inched closer to Jan so Brian could get a close up of both arms in one shot, super cut muscle on one side, and lush thick massive female muscle on the other.
Jan looked at Jenny's arm and admired the shape and sheer size of it. It went along with the rest of her. Her arm was big, powerful, and curvy like the rest of her body. Jenny had the classic curves of a female body, but with a powerful build. Jenny never tried to show off her muscles to people, but she couldn't hide them either. Jan leaned in and really squeezed, trying to make her arm bigger to match Jenny's size. Her bicep rose a little, but it got a lot more pumped. It thickened and deeper striations appeared as more veins came to the surface of her skin to go along with the thick one that ran across the head and peak of her biceps. Jenny looked at Jan's arm, and then flexed hard herself. Her arm grew a little more. Her own cuts weren't bad either.
"Wow. Muscle overload", Brian breathed as he watched the display. "Double-", Brian began. "Do both arms!", he called out to them.
Jan and Jenny stood up to their full height, held up both of their arms and did a double biceps pose. People had to move out of the way for both of these tall girls to do a side by side double biceps pose. Jan's tight pink top rose just a little with her arms up exposing her hard midsection. Just that little bit of skin was enough to make Brian remember the display from the week before. He didn't want to miss any of this.
Sara Hewitt had come back inside after being out on the deck for a while. She hadn't wanted to come to the party at first. There was a nagging voice in the back of her head telling her just how bad she was being. Sara had grown up in a relatively strict household when it came to drinking, smoking, and carousing with boys, and yet she stood there with a cup of beer in her hand. In a moment of complete clarity, Sara felt guilty, but then she downed the last of the beer and went to the keg to get some more. She walked towards the front of the apartment and nearly choked on the watery beer when she saw Jan and Jenny trying to outflex one another. Sara thought it was silly, but she was glad Jan was having fun.
She stood next to Brian. He didn't notice her there until she spoke. "Did you spike their drinks to get them to do that?", she asked.
"No", Brian replied then looked over at Sara without moving the camera. His eyes widened, as he had his second stroke of genius in the span of five minutes. He looked down at Sara's tight little body. She told everybody that was 5'5", but in reality she was maybe 5'41/2", and she had transformed her body and her self image in the last two years. Sara had put on 20 pounds of hard earned muscle in that time. She still wasn't big, but she was fit. She liked having a body that she could be proud of.
Brian looked down her body and then back up. She was wearing a ruffly white skirt, short enough to show off her runner's legs, and she was wearing a sleeveless top that showed off her tanned arms. She wasn't flexing at all, but he could see the muscle shapes anyway. That was enough for Brian.
"Sara, get in there and do some flexing."
Sara cocked her head to one side. "I don't think so."
"Oh come on. Please. It would make this shot perfect. Two oaks and the mighty mite."
"Mite? I'm not a mite."
"Yeah, well you are mighty. Shit, Sara, your arms are bigger than mine. Get in there."
Sara smiled and flexed her arm a little. A perfectly round ball of muscle bunched up. The rear peak on her bicep was amazing. He couldn't wait to see the front. Sara used her fingers and squeezed her own arm a little before she put her hand around Brian's upper arm.
"Mine's certainly not bigger", Sara began. "Mine's harder though." Sara twisted her wrist back and forth making the muscle go up and down, teasing him.
Other guys had come over and stood next to Brian as he filmed. They shouted and yelled as Jenny and Jan had their own personal pose down. They were getting into it. It still felt stupid, but that's why they were at the party in the first place.
Sara was usually shy and reserved, but there was a part of her that liked the attention of a crowd. She'd liked it since she was a little girl. Usually the attention came from her singing, but muscles would do. Besides, Jan and Jenny seemed to be having so much fun.
Sara pulled her curly blond hair over her shoulders and breezed in between the two amazons. She was dwarfed by the two muscle giants until she raised both of her arms and flexed hard. Sara's arms were nowhere near the size of Jan or Jenny, but they had beautiful shape and on her body, they looked plenty big.
A collective "Woo" came from the onlookers.
Sara had small joints which made her biceps seem particularly huge. She teased her arms a little and brought her forearms down a little bit. Sara knew her arms were nice, but it was her legs that she was most proud of. She bent one leg and stretched the other out a little. She took a deep breath and flexed her arms at the same time the definition sharpened on her legs. Her quad flexed up producing a wonderful sweeping shape. She turned to the side, straightened her arm and flexed her tricpes. She looked down at her arm, and when she flexed it really really hard and held her arm at the right correct angle, she could see seperation between the heads of the muscle. It was so cool, that she did it again.
Jan and Jenny looked down at Sara posing to the music. "Do you see this?", Jenny asked Jan.
"Yeah. You thinking what I'm thinking?", Jan asked in Jenny's ear.
Jenny grinned in anticipation. "How much does Sara weigh?", she asked.
"That's light enough."
Jenny and Jan stopped flexing long enough for each of them to reach down and take Sara under a shoulder. Jenny's left hand was under Sara's right shoulder, and Jan on the left. Before Sara could really react, the two 6'0" muscle girls lifted. Sara's feet came off the floor and she dangled between them. Jan and Jenny raised their other arms and flexed for the camera. The shouts got even louder.
Sara went along with it. They felt Sara's muscles harden and tighten as she pulled her elbows parallel to the floor before she bent her elbows and did a double biceps pose while Jan and Jenny held her off the floor. She was pretty proud of her lats and delts as they bulged to keep her body up while she flexed.
"This is great stuff", Brian whispered to his new roommate Armen.
"Yeah", the lanky sophomore replied while keeping his eyes on the impromptu show.
"I think I know what I want to be when I grow up. Doing this for a living would be the best thing ever. What do you think about me starting a website?"
"Great idea, as long as this footage ends up on my computer first", Armen replied.
The muscle show finally broke up, and before long a guy doing a keg stand had become the main attraction. Brian debated whether he should film it or not. He didn't get a chance to get to that side of the apartment.
There was a knock at the door. Armen was closest to it. He hoped it wasn't the cops. This was his first semester at Emory after transferring from Georgia State. He couldn't afford to get in trouble and maybe lose his scholarship. He opened it with more than a little trepidation. He was relieved when he saw a middle aged man in a dark suit standing there.
"Can I help you?", Armen asked.
"Yeah", the man began. He smiled and looked past Armen into the party. He remembered when he was that age. It brought back memories, but he didn't have time for that. He had a job to do. "I'm looking for Brian Pronger."
Armen's brow drew together a little. "Who should I tell him is asking?"
The man's smile seemed a little strange. "Just tell him its Moe. He'll know me."
Armen was still a little uneasy, but he told the man to wait while he went to get his roommate. Armen was pretty tall so he could look over heads. He found Brian and hurried over. "Hey, man. There's some guy at the door looking for you."
"Says his name is Moe, like the Three Stooges I guess. Do you need to sneak out the back?"
All the joy seemed to drain from Brian's face when he heard the name Moe. "Wouldn't do any good", Brian said with a sigh. He turned off his camera and handed it to Armen. "Here, keep this for me until I get back."
Brian walked past Armen and through the crowd like a man walking into an IRS audit. He got to the front door and pulled it open.
"Hey, Brian", Moe greeted him with false cheer. "Come with me young man."
Brian's legs almost collapsed from underneath him as he stepped out the door. He pulled it closed behind him. The sound of the music became muffled. "Hey, Moe. What are you doing here?"
"Well, young man, the boss is in town. He wants to play a little poker."
Moe's demeanor changed. Brian felt a lump in the pit of his stomach. "Young man, I told you that the boss might want a chance to win back the money he lost. You knew that. Well, tonight's the night. Who knows? You might get lucky and win some more", Moe said with a laugh that was way to jovial for the situation. "But I fucking doubt it." He pushed Brian down into the car. There were two other guys in the car with him. Moe got in and the car headed down the road.
A couple of hours later, Alisha was leaning against the door with her arms crossed under her very ample bosom, which wasn't fair at all. She was wearing a maze colored top that was cut low enough already. The lift from her arms only made her already glorious cleavage that much better. The guys walking by were trying to look like they weren't looking, but one guy tripped and nearly fell as he started up the stairs past the door. Alisha tried not to laugh at him. Besides, she had other things on her mind.
"You did what?", Alisha asked Jan.
"Yeah, well somehow Brian got me and Jenny to flex for his camera. And then Sara got into the act."
"I leave the fucking party for half an hour, and you two lose your minds. I thought beer didn't affect you."
"It doesn't. Well, aside from making me run back and forth to the bathroom." Jan stepped closer to and Alisha leaned down to her ear. "Has anybody asked you how you keep coming back with kegs even though your 20th birthday is next week?"
"No, they haven't. And don't change the subject. Where's Brian? I want to see what he made you do."
"I haven't seen Brian in a while. I want to see it for myself."
Jan and Alisha found Armen in the kitchen. "Hey, have you seen Brian?", Jan asked.
"Yeah, he left with some guy. He seemed kinda bummed about it, but he told me not to worry about it. He did give me the camera to hold for him though." Armen reached behind his back and pulled the very nice camera from the counter.
"Cool, I wanted to see Jan make a fool of herself."
"Don't forget me", Sara said as she too walked into the kitchen. They huddled around the viewer on the camera and watched what Brian had shot.
North of town, Brian was worrying about shooting of another kind. He was sitting in a autobody repair shop with a bunch of guys all carrying guns. Some of the guys were drug dealers and some of the others were general knock around guys. Either way, Brian was out of place. He was just a college sophomore. He hadn't played card games much as a child, but one day he had found an internet poker site and gotten hooked. He had even sold his Playstation to raise enough cash to play online poker. He had gotten so good that he had started seeking out real games, and he had found them. He had won more than he lost, but it was the thrill that kept him coming back. A couple of weeks earlier, Brian had played a poker game in Marietta with some high rollers who had heard about him. He had cleaned up. He had walked into that game with nothing except a smart mouth, and he had walked out with $20,000 of Gary Pulser's money. Gary was the guy everybody just called the boss, and Brian was sitting across from him.
Brian had started out this game several thousand dollars up, but by the early morning hours, Brian was down, way down. Gary and his cronies were cleaning up at Brian's expense. Brian knew how things would go, but he had gotten himself into this. Gary called an end to the game early in the morning. Brian was in trouble, and he knew it. He felt his phone vibrate in his pocket for about the tenth time, but once again he ignored it. He didn't have time to answer. He had to dig himself out of a hole.
"Not bad, there young fella", gary told Brian with a slap on the back. "You were hanging in there for a while, but sometimes luck just turns against you."
Brian couldn't dare say what he was thinking. They had cheated and that was all there was to it. They had ganged up on him and reinforced why he should have never gotten involved with these guys to begin with. The other guys from the game walked out, and Brian was left alone with gary and his men.
"Umm, Mr. Pulser, I'm going to need some time to come up with the money. I don't have that kind of money. I'll have to raise it", Brian told gary in a trembling voice.
The Boss' face lit up. "Of course you will. I'm not a hard hearted man. I know a young fella like you doesn't walk around with that kinda dough."
Brian forced a smile. "So, you'll give me some time?"
The group laughed. "I'll give you one week... seven days. Then you better have my money." Gary and his henchmen started towards the door. They had to pass some cars in the bodyshop.
"But, sir, that might not be long enough. I'm going to have to play some games, and that's too soon. Can't you give me more time?"
Gary stopped and turned. "I could give you more time. Hell I could forgive the debt all together. The money you owe isn't shit to me, but the principle is. If I let some snot nosed asswhipe like you owe me money, then I'd have to bust heads for six months to restore order. Instead of having to bust a bunch of heads, I'd rather just bust yours. If the need arises, that is. I have full faith in you, young fella. I think you'll pay me every dime."
Brian's body felt like it was shutting down. He had to lean against a smashed up Monte Carlo to support himself. His mouth was completely dry and his head felt as if it was going to explode. "Mr. Pulser, I don't want to piss you off. You know I can't get that much money that fast. Give me one more week. I can win enough in 2 weeks, but not one. Please." The emotions started coming out. Brian felt that everything was out of his control.
Gary patted Brian on his cheek. "Don't blubber young man, and don't beg. You get seven days, not a day more." Gary turned again and started towards his car.
"Don't set me up to fail, Mr. Pulser. I want to pay you what I owe, but I'm telling you that I have never made that much money in a week. I'm not a high roller."
Gary walked back towards Brian, who was still leaning against the Monte Carlo. His face was serious as he spoke. "Young man, I'm not setting you up to fail. Think of this as a rush assignment in school."
"But, I don't want to piss you off."
Gary walked up close to Brian and pressed him back towards one of the concrete support pillars. "Young man, I want to tell you something. Maybe this will motivate you." He took a step back and cleared his throat. "When I was 12 years old, my father left and the son of a bitch never came back. I heard he got killed in Detroit about fifteen years ago. Anyway, my mother had to do what she had to do to keep food on the table for me, my brother, and my sister. One day a john came by the house wanting a fucking freebie. My mother hit the son of a bitch in the head a frying pan. The next day the ass came back with three of his buddies. They thought they were going to run a train on my Ma." Pulser inhaled and looked up away from Brian's face as he thought back on the day.
"I ran to my bed and got the butcher knife I kept under my pillow. Now see, I kept that knife just in case my old man ever came back. I never thought I'd have to use it on some stupid horny pricks, but oh well. I took the knife in both of my little hands and ran in. They had Ma bent over the counter, and I stabbed a guy in his naked pasty ass. The blade didn't go in all that deep, but he hollered like a pig when that blade went in." Pulser laughed and slapped his thigh before he continued. He face was once again serious.
"One of the guys took me by the hair and threw me clear across the room. I hit my head pretty hard and broke the table when I landed. The guy I had stabbed came over to me and took the knife real slow. His face was so mean looking that I think I shit myself when he stood over me with that knife in his hands. He let the blood drip down on my face. It put my hands up, and the son of a bitch sliced my arm good and deep. I still got the scar from it." He pulled up his shirtsleeve and showed Brian the nasty scar on the outside of his forearm. "Something came alive in me when that blade hit my skin. I hadn't been a chump as a child, but something came alive in me that I didn't know was there. I killed those men, all four of them with my bare hands. Do you hear me Brian?"
"Ye--- Yes, sir", Brian stammered.
Gary shook his head and suddenly got very angry. "I don't think you hear me!" Brian flinched when the Boss' hands shot up and past his head. Gary put his hands on either side of the concrete pillar and he bit down hard. "I killed the first guy! I crushed his skull. I crushed it between my little twelve year old hands! He screamed like a little girl and his buddies tried to pull me off, but I kept crushing. Did you hear what I said?!?" Brian heard a loud cracking sound above his head, then little pieces of concrete started hitting the top of his head. The Boss' face was turning red and his eyes burned.
"I crushed his skull and then I killed the other three guys", Gary finished his story and pulled his hands away from the now misshapen pillar. He took a few deep breaths. "They screamed when I killed them. I don't want to make you scream, Brian. I rather like you, but if you don't have my money in seven days, I'll personally make you wish your momma had never met your fuckin daddy."
Gary turned his back to Brian then, and started towards the front of the shop. The Monte Carlo was still in his way. He raised his leg and kicked the rear quarter panel. The tires squealed and the car spun half way round. Brian exhaled and couldn't inhale. A memory flashed in his mind. It was almost like he had seen that happen before, but he was far to concerned about his current problems to think. At once, the room began to spin, and he felt light headed. Gary and his cronies chuckled when they saw Brian faint dead away.
"Hey, I'm starting to get worried. Brian won't answer his phone", Jan told Armen as they all prepared to leave the party. It was winding down anyway.
"I'm worried too. He usually texts me right back. I've sent him four or five and no response", Armen said. His brow was gathered in concern. Brian was a hard guy to dislike, and he had helped make Armen's transition to Emory very smooth. He had showed him around to every one of his classes on the first day, and had always been willing to help when Armen needed something.
Jan opened her phone to dial again, but thought better of it. She took Sara off to a corner. "Can you find Brian for me?"
Sara grinned. "I've had a drink or two, but I think I should be able to do that." Sara's look became distant, but only for a couple of seconds. "He's in Marietta, at some sort of shop. I didn't stay long enough to get a feel for what he was doing, but he was nervous. He's not hurt or anything, but he sure doesn't want to be wherever he is"
"Hmm." Jan ran her hand through her hair and sighed. "Tell me where he is best you can. I'm going to go pick him up."
Sara gave Jan as much detail as she could before asking, "Do you want me and Alisha to ride with you?"
"No. You two have stuff to do in the morning. You'd better get back. I'll call you if I need you, or get lost."
Jan said good-bye to a few people before she hopped in her car and took off down the road. It was early in the morning and there were hardly any cars on the road. She put the top down. It was the first week of fall, but in Georgia that just meant a slight nip in the night air. It felt great. Jan turned the music up loud and hoped she didn't get pulled over because she was ignoring the speed limit.
It was only a fifteen minute drive, and Jan found the large body shop right where Sara said it was going to be. It wasn't often anymore, but sometimes she marveled at how powerful Sara really was. She pulled into the lot just as several cars were leaving. They all looked in Jan's direction, but it was too dark outside for them to see much. Jan watched as all the cars pulled off down the road. There were still two cars parked out front. Jan whipped her 350z into a place in front of the door. She jumped out of her car, and she was careful not to touch the dirty door as she looked in through the dingy shop window. She had been in a happy, almost bubbly mood until she saw a group of guys standing around laughing hysterically. Men only laughed like that when it was at someone else's expense. When one of the guys doubled over in laugher, Jan saw Brian lying on the floor slumped against a cracked up pillar. The door had been locked, but Jan didn't even notice. She gripped the knob and yanked the heavy metal door open. She felt that rush of power as the rage inside broke free from the box she kept it in. Her long legs covered ground quickly as she stormed inside. All the heads turned quickly.
"Who the hell are you?", Moe demanded. The lingering smile from his laughing dropped, and he got serious. A couple of guys even reached for their guns. They lightened up when they saw that the tall shape coming towards them wasn't a man, but instead a woman, a gorgeous woman at that.
Jan looked past the men's legs and saw that Brian didn't have an bumps or bruises on his face. She corralled her anger and put her power back where it belonged. "I'm Brian's friend, and whatever's going on, he looks like he's had enough."
"I think we'll be the judge of that." Jan strolled over to Brian and got down to inspect him closer. "Your friend just fainted. We haven't laid a hand on him", one of goons said with his palms out.
"We didn't have to!" They broke out laughing again. Jan tried not to, but she had to smile too. Brian looked so pitiful. She slapped him on the cheek a couple of times. She stood up and faced the men when Brian started coming around.
"What's this all about?" The men looked at one another but said nothing. "Oh come on., cat got all of your tongues? That's a busy fucking cat. Why's my friend lying on the floor like a sack of laundry with you guys laughing at him. Why is he here in the first place?" There was a time when Jan would have been angry and willing to provoke a fight, but not now. She wouldn't back down, but she wasn't itching to fight either.
They shrugged their shoulders and looked at each other still. Moe looked at Jan and exclaimed, "What he hell? I can't turn down a pretty face. Your friend owes my boss a lot of money, and looked like it was too much for him to stand. His eyes rolled up in his head and the poor guy fainted. There are you happy?"
"Brian? How the hell could he owe money? He doesn't have any."
The men laughed again, all except Gary. Moe spoke up for the group again. "He didn't used to have a dime, but he's a little poker shark that boy. He took 20 large from a game a couple of weeks ago, and some of the guys wanted a second crack at him. He lost this time."
Jan whistled and shook her head. "So you guys must be the brute squad. Big strong guys like you, no wonder he fainted. Brian's more bark than bite, but he's an honest guy. He'll pay you all the money."
"Don't take this the wrong way, but how does a guy like that get a girl like you? It would seem to me that Brian here is a slap hitter and you're a fuckin grand slam."
Jan laughed. Her whole face lit up with it. "Me and Brian don't date. He's a friend." Jan turned around when she heard Brian stir. "So, you guys play poker often."
"Once every couple of weeks or so. The boss travels a lot. You looking for a game, cause I might have something going on at my house tonight."
Jan grimaced and patted the man on the shoulder. "Poor baby. Was that line the best you've got?"
The group laughed loudly and pointed at their associate. His face turned red, but he had to laugh at himself. "Its late. I'm not at my best", he said.
"Sure. I'm just giving you a hard time. But I'm not a gambler. I just can't see throwing good money away. The house always wins."
"Too bad your friend doesn't know that."
Gary was leaning against the Monte Carlo that he had kicked. He hadn't said a word, only watching. This pretty young woman had come into the shop unannounced and now she had his boys eating out of her hand. Gary stood by while this girl turned his rough neck guys into balls of clay. She was attractive without a doubt. She was tall, but her body had perfect proportions. She was smart too. Gary's eyes narrowed as he thought about it. She might be a little too smart, and how the hell did she get in? The door had been locked. He realized that in a way she had pacified him too. That mood was gone however. Now he was suspicious.
"Hey, you assholes. We don't even know this chick. She could be a fucking cop and you guys are talking like a bunch of school boys. I bet none of you even thought about patting her down for a weapon or checking for a wire."
Jan's azure eyes cut towards Gary, but she softened her gaze after an instant. This had been going so well. The men stopped joking and their faces got serious again. She decided to take back control.
"A weapon? Come on? What's one girl like me going to do against five big strong men? Besides", Jan paused and slid the hem of her already short skirt up her long long legs. "Where would I hide a gun?" Four pairs of eyes strained in their sockets as Jan slowly lowered her skirt. They just wanted a peak beneath the skirt, but she didn't raise it that high, almost but not quite.
"She could still have a wire!", Gary exclaimed. He was getting mad at his boys.
"A wire?" Jan chuckled and slowly raised her bottom of her pink top a little. Her super tight and super hard midriff was on display for the men to see. She thought about giving them a quick flex, but decided against it. She wasn't usually this much of an exhibitionist, but it was fun watching these guys drool. Two of the guys had their mouths open, and one guy had involuntarily grabbed his crotch. Jan looked each of them in the eye as she lowered her top, then put her fingers on the neck line. She leaned down and pulled down, exposing the top of her bra. Jan's breasts weren't nearly as big as Alisha's, but they were more than nice enough. One guy even moaned.
"See. I told you I was clean."
"Ye-- Yeah, Boss. I don't think she's wearing a wire."
Gary stepped between Jan and the men. He expected her to take a step back, but Gary didn't know Jan. He stepped closer. The tips of their noses were nearly touching.
"You have a problem with me?", Jan asked coolly. She was being challenged. She felt that little bit of doubt come on. She wasn't really worried about fighting regular people, but there was still a little hesitation. She wouldn't let it show though.
Gary raised his hands to check her bra for a wire. Jan slapped both his hands. The sound echoed in the large space. The crew was shocked. Nobody dared touch Gary. They didn't even know how to react. The Boss' smile was tight and sinister. He raised his hands again. Jan bit down and slapped his hands again, harder.
"You can look, but no touching." There was a thinly veiled threat in Jan's tone.
"You have balls, girl", Gary hissed.
Brian opened his eyes and shook his head. He saw Jan standing up and facing off with Gary Pulser. The image of Gary crushing the column and kicking the car flashed in his mind. He jumped to his feet, and put his hand on Jan's arm. He tugged, but Jan didn't budge. The muscles in her upper arm were rock hard. She didn't even wiggle.
"So you're a cop?"
"No, I'm not a cop. I'm not here to bust you. I'm here to pick up my friend." The doubt that had been nagging her mind was silenced. Jan was ready for a fight if this guy wanted one.
"Come on. I'm up now. Let's go!", Brian yelled.
"No, your friend thinks she's a bad ass. She wants a piece of me."
"No no no! Leave her alone please. She doesn't know what you are", Brian pleaded.
Gary's look was intense, but to his surprise this girl's look matched his. He looked away from Jan and to Brian. "Ok, boys, lets go." He motioned towards the boys and they headed towards the door. He stopped short of the large door and turned. "Oh, and Brian, you have six days to pay me back."
"Don't argue. Your tall friend here cost you a day. Take it up with her."
"Hey, Boss, I kinda like that girl", Moe whispered once they were outside.
Gary leaned over. "Yeah, I kinda like her too, but I can't have a broad talk to me like that. No matter how fucking good she looks."
Jan had to help Brian out to the car. He looked terrible. His entire world was coming unglued. His stomach was turning flips, and just before he reached Jan's car, he threw up. He heaved several times.
Jan came up behind him, and her voice was full of concern when she asked, "Brian, how much money do you owe those guys anyway?"
Jan frowned. "That's a lot of money. How could you lose that much money in a few hours?"
Brian looked up at her before he lowered his head and puked again. "I really lost 50 thousand", Brian managed through heaves. "I have ten grand left from the other game, but not the rest." Jan helped Brian clean himself up before they started down the road.
They road in silence for a time. Brian was trying to make plans. He had to find a lot of games, and quickly. Seven days had been a huge stretch, but six days was impossible.
"Can you help me out?", Brian asked suddenly.
"You want me to enable your gambling habit. I don't know about that, Brian. Besides, $40,000 is a lot of money."
"Not for you. Look I know your family is loaded. Its a big favor to ask, but I saved your ass back there."
Jan scoffed. "Wait a minute. Who picked up who?"
"You were about to fight Gary."
"So? He wouldn't be the first guy I've fought and probably not the last." For some reason, it felt good to say that.
"He's not what you think. You can kick ass, Jan, but some people aren't like everybody else."
Jan wondered what he was talking about, but decided not to ask. She dropped him off at the dorm. It was about an hour before sunrise. Brian got out and closed the door. "So, Jan, are you going to help me? Maybe just to make up the difference?"
Jan had to suppress anger and frustrated before she looked up. "Brian, I'm not sure if I'll help you or not, but I can tell you this much. If you play any more card games, I won't help you at all." For once, Brian had nothing to say. He walked into his dorm room and passed out on the bed.
Jan slept late on Saturday, which was against her normal routine. She didn't jog either, but by the early afternoon she felt fine. She was home alone, and it gave her time to get ahead on some school work with no distractions. She was lounging on the sofa in their living room when Alisha opened the front door and walked in. Jan looked up from the stuffy political science text she had been reading. "So, how was the first day?"
Alisha didn't respond right away. She hung her head and took off her jacket. It had been raining all day. She sighed and slumped down on to a chair. It wasn't until she raised her head and pulled her hair back that Jan saw the smile on her face. "It was great. I had to schedule a second class so many kids showed up!"
Jan was so happy for Alisha. For the last several weeks Alisha had been working on a proposal to add visual arts to the after school programs at the Mays Community Center. She had won approval for a pilot program. They were going to monitor the progress. So far they had to be impressed. "So what did the administrators say?" Jan sat up straight and listened.
"Well, Mrs. Ross, the one who kept voting no didn't have a damn thing to say, but the rest of them were nice. They seemed like they really want this to work. I mean you should have seen those kid's faces when I showed them how to mix colors. All I did was show a kid how to make purple."
"I knew it would work out. You were having doubts, but I told you."
"Yeah you did, but this is the first time I've done anything like this."
"Oh, and your mother called. She said you weren't answering your phone. I told her where you were."
Alisha pulled out her phone and saw that she had nine missed calls. "I turned the ringer off. I'll call her back." Alisha sighed. "I don't know why she called so many times."
"She's excited about coming here for your birthday. And don't tell me you aren't waiting to see Conrad again."
Alisha nodded. "Yeah, he's so cute", she said about her new little brother. It was funny that she would be almost 20 years older than her younger brother, but he was going to have a cool older sister. He would appreciate that when he got to high school.
"So, how does your last week as a teenager feel?", Jan asked.
Alisha shrugged her shoulders. "You'll know in a couple of months. What the hell is so important about turning 20? I still can't buy a fuckin beer legally. You know Jan, we did what 23 official missions for the Treasury Department?"
"We did all those missions, and I've been shot at. Fuck, I've been shot. I've shot people, and I'm still more than a year away from being able to order a fucking glass of wine with dinner. There's something wrong with that."
"Alisha, that doesn't matter for you."
"Its the principle of the thing, Jan. Same thing with all the soldiers. Last night I ran into a guy on leave from the 101st, and he had to ask me to buy him and his old high school buddies a case of beer. He had his uniform on and everything. Oh well. He was pretty hot too in those fatigues."
"You should be ashamed of herself."
"I'm fucking not. I haven't had sex since July. You know that? That's got to be a record for me. Maybe I'm getting old." Alisha got a personal laugh out of that and went to the kitchen. She came back and sat down. "So, what are you going to do about the Brian situation? Are you going to give him the money?"
"Not exactly. I thought about it, and I have an idea."
Alisha rolled her eyes. "Jan, when you get these little devious ideas people either get beat up, or things get messed up, or both."
"No, see I put a call in to Agent Wills--" Jan explained her plan and what she had already set up. The only thing she didn't like was that she might be a little late for Alisha's birthday party.
"Do you think you'll need any help?", Alisha asked, hoping the answer was yes.
"I think I can handle it. I mean they're just a bunch of regular
guys. How hard could it be?"
Brian stood nervously next to Jan, who seemed completely relaxed. They were standing in the middle of the same body shop as the earlier encounter. There was cheap gym bag filled with neatly wrapped $50's and $100's sitting on the floor to Jan's right. Brian had looked at the money, but not bothered to count it. He was sure it was all there. He did have doubts about some things though. He had to warn Jan about Gary.
"Jan, please don't try to face those guys down again."
"That's not my plan, but if I do then I do."
"You don't understand. That Gary is a really bad guy, a killer."
Jan turned and looked at her friend. "We've known each other for a while Brian, but there're a lot of things you don't know about me. Not trying to brag, but if I wanted to, I could kick the shit out of those four lackeys and that Gary that you're so afraid of." Jan felt confident that what she said was true, but there was still that little voice in her head.
Brian was getting angry and more than a little frustrated. Jan didn't get the hint. He had to lay it out plain. He couldn't bear to see anything bad happen to her. He took a deep breath before he spoke. "No you can't. Jan, I know this is going to sound crazy, but Gary isn't normal. I thought he was, but he's not."
"You said that before! What the hell are you talking about?" Jan was getting annoyed.
"He's strong! Like really impossibly strong!", he huffed. He pointed his finger across Jan's field of vision. "You see that column. He crushed it like that! He put his hands on either side of the column and crushed until it was all crooked and broken up. That's what I've been trying to tell you." He paused to get himself together. "I just don't want him to hurt you."
Brian's last words caught in Jan's mind. He looked at Jan's face as all sorts of emotions danced across her face. He didn't know that Jan wasn't trying to figure out her next move any more. She already knew what she had to do. Instead, she wondered if she had it in her to do what had to be done. She had to admit to herself that she was afraid. She was so afraid that the idea of running came into her mind and would not go away. Jan didn't have nightmares anymore about what had been done to her in Oklahoma, and she was no longer scared to answer the door because she told herself that those fears had been irrational. This fear was plenty rational. If this Gary could crush that pillar, then he could hurt her, and above all, Jan was afraid to be hurt again. She had always been able to take huge amounts of pain, but, as she stood there, the thought of being hurt made her physically sick.
Now she felt trapped. She lowered her head and closed her eyes. She couldn't run. Good people would die if she ran. Brian didn't know what a mess he had made. She inhaled and looked up. She wiped at the corners of her eyes, but they were dry. That was a surprise, but a welcome one. She had resigned herself to doing what she had to do. She was scared, but she wasn't a coward.
Brian had never seen Jan look this way. He put his hand on her shoulder to comfort her. "Just let me do the talking", he told her. He was shocked at her reaction, and he pulled back when she turned to face him. Her deep blue eyes bored through him.
"Brian, you do as I say. Don't make a move unless I tell you. Do you understand?", she hissed through clenched teeth. She started taking off the little jacket she was wearing, exposing the sleeveless top she had on beneath. She stepped way from Brian and laid her jacket down on a clear table. She didn't know that she would never put it back on again. She reached her hand down into her shirt and pulled out a small microphone. "This is three", she began. "Plan has changed. Don't come in until I call." She put the small microphone back where it had been.
"I don't understand", Brian muttered.
Jan strode over to Brian and grabbed him by his shirt. He felt his feet leave the ground. He looked down at her arm and then on to her face when she spoke. "We can't talk our way out of this. Keep your mouth shut unless I tell you to speak. Don't move unless I say so, and if I say run, don't look back. Got it!"
He nodded, and she dropped him. Brian swallowed hard, and was too rattled to even wonder what was going on.
Jan picked up a rear view mirror laying on a table and checked her face. She tried to calm her self, or at least to make herself look like she was calm. She wished that she had asked Alisha and Sara to help, but she hadn't and there was no time. They were meeting Alisha's parents at the hotel. Jan was on her own.
There was a grinding from above as the roll up door motor came to life. One of the large bay doors rattled its way up. Jan felt her apprehension rise with it. She saw the grill of Gary's chauffeured Lincoln and then the tinted windshield. When the door was high enough, the car started inside. Jan swallowed the lump in her throat as four men exited the car and approached.
"Money in the bag?", Moe asked without any trace of the good will they had from the last encounter.
"Sure is", Jan replied. She reached down and lifted it. "I want to pay the boss personally though." Moe snatched at the bag, but Jan pulled it back. She held it out behind her. "Only the boss."
Moe glared, but Jan just looked at him as if everything was fine. "You tryin to start some shit, girl? Give me the fuckin bag." Jan didn't say anything or make a move. "Brian, it was all fun and games last time, but you better talk some sense into your friend here."
Brian looked at Jan. He wanted to speak, but one look at Jan's face made him think again. For the first time since they had met, he was afraid of her. There was a side of Jan Caufield that he had never seen.
Moe looked at Brian for a moment, before he realized that he wasn't going to do anything. Moe threw his hand back and let his hand fly towards Jan's head. She dodged his slap easily.
Jan's little smirk made Moe furious. He drew his fist back in anger. His punch flew with practiced accuracy and with hard earned force, but this teenaged girl caught his fist in her large hand, and stopped it cold. He watched her forearms thicken and harden as she squeezed and kept his fist under her control.
"I said no touching." She drew her arm back, and punched Moe in the face with his own hand. He staggered holding his busted lip. Blood dripped to the ground. He pulled his pistol. Brian jumped, but Jan didn't. She didn't even move.
"You just fuckin ended your life!", Moe screamed.
Jan's eyes focused in on Moe, and the muscles in her Jaw flexed as she bit down hard. To everyone surprise, Jan stepped forward so that the barrel of his pistol was touching the middle of her chest. "Pull the trigger and see what happens", she warned through clenched teeth.
Moe's finger touched the trigger, but he didn't pull it. Something told him that if he pulled that trigger, he would be the one who died. The rest of the boys ran up then. Jan turned and tossed the bag of money. It landed at Brian's feet.
"You won't need those guns", she said in a completely natural tone as she faced them. "I said that I want to give the money to the boss, but I'll tell you what. If any of you can go over there and get that bag, I'll let you have it."
The men laughed. "Let us have it!", one of the men howled with laugher.
Jan smiled. This always worked. Men were so predicable. She barely got a chance to finish her thought when the youngest of the crew started walking towards the bag as if she wasn't there. Jan let him get a step past her before she turned, and set her feet. He was in the middle of taking another step when Jan's long leg lashed out. She kicked the man in the side of the head, and his body just dropped. Jan stood there with her leg extended. She rotated slowly with her leg still at the same angle. When she was facing the stunned men, she slowly curled her leg and brought her foot to the floor.
"On second thought, you might need those guns, cause I think I might hit too hard for you guys."
Two of the guys grabbed her at the same time. Jan didn't try to dodge them or fight them off. They held her tightly and shook her. "Hold her up!", Moe yelled. He dabbed a little blood from his still bleeding mouth before he backhanded Jan hard across the face. The blow echoed in the large space. Her head turned and her hair covered her face. He slapped her again, and then again. He shook his hand against the stinging and looked on with satisfaction. "Don't touch, huh!" He was about to step towards the money, when Jan tossed her head making her hair fly back exposing her face. She smirked at him.
"Before you go get that money. Could you do me a favor? Could you please hit me again, but this time I'd like to feel it."
Moe couldn't take it any more. He pulled his pistol and raised it high over his head before he brought it down as hard as he could. He slammed it into Jan's beautiful face again and again. Harder and harder as the frustration and rage gushed from Moe. Moe had done bad things in his life, but he always thought of himself as a fair man. He didn't think of himself as a violent man unless the situation warranted it, but this girl had sent him over the edge. His arm was a small whirlwind as he hit Jan over and over. Then he started hitting back and forth. He smashed the gun into her unprotected face. One of the wooden grip covers broke and clattered across the floor, but still he kept going. He was huffing, and he was sweating, but he didn't stop until the second half of the grip broke. His arm and shoulder were on fire, and he sucked in air. Jan's head hang down, and the men had to work at holding her up. Her hair once again covered her face, but this time blood fell in large drops towards the floor. Moe looked at his pistol and got angry all over again. He smashed the butt of the pistol into Jan's head a couple of times before toss the gun to the side.
"Stupid little girl", Moe said through breaths. He started walking towards the money.
"Thank you", he heard Jan mutter. Moe froze as if he had heard a ghost. He had broken his gun on her face. She should be dead.
The two men holding her arms were just as shocked. Jan let loose just a little of the rage that was the core of her power. She took in a sharp breath as the power filled her. The men holding her felt her already hard muscles change. They became harder than anybody's muscles should have been. They were about to much much harder. The men were holding Jan by her upper arms, and before they could let go, she bent her elbows, trapping their hands where they were. The men tried to pull free, but Jan held them fast. She could feel their fingers wiggling, and a grin formed at the corners of her lips. She started flexing her biceps. She didn't pull down on her arms anymore, she didn't have to. She just flexed her biceps. Her peaks started really forming when she bore down. They just kept rising. The men were tugging with all their strength now, but their fingers were trapped. Jan took a breath and flexed her biceps harder. She let more of her power loose and the muscles responded by growing harder and bigger. The muscle got sharper. The jagged peak grew until Jan heard the first crack of a broken bone. That excited her in a strange way, and all her muscles grew. There was another crack from the other man's hand. Jan exhaled then and raised her head. She looked Moe in the eyes as she bit down on her bottom lip and flexed her biceps one more time. She squeezed her fist and her biceps peaks grew again. She was rewarded with the sounds of multiple bones breaking.
She opened her arms and let the men fall to the ground then. They were in so much pain they just rolled on the ground at Jan's feet. "That felt good, really good. I needed that", she admitted to herself.
Moe couldn't move. He stood just a couple of feet from Jan, but he couldn't even run. He saw his gun about fifteen feet away, but he knew he wouldn't make it. He knew too that it wouldn't do him any good. Jan reached out and took Moe by the shirt and lifted him off the ground with out the slightest hint of strain. He got a good look at her face. It was bloody, bruised and swollen, but she seemed to be just fine. She leaned down and picked up the pistol while still holding him aloft. She held the gun in her left hand while she decided what to do with it.
"You know Moe, you beating me like that really hurt. I mean, I've felt worse, but that wasn't pleasant at all. Let's see how you like it." Jan drew her arm back and Moe cringed.
"I'm sorry", he cried out.
Jan stopped just an inch from his face. "Oh you are?"
"Yeah, I'm sorry. You made me mad, but I'm sorry."
Jan dropped him, and he retreated. "Go get your boss for me", she told Moe as he nervously moved away from her. Then she leaned down and lifted the two goons with crushed fingers. "Don't forget your friends!", she yelled and threw both men twenty feet to the front of Gary's car. She hurried towards the still unconscious third guard. "This one too!" She threw him next to the other two.
Brian wanted to run up to Jan. He had so much to say, but he just stood there. This was too much to take in. This was blowing his mind. Reason was telling him that this wasn't happening, but every sense told him that it was. He could even smell the urine from the men who's fingers had been crushed.
Moe opened the rear passenger door of the Lincoln and quickly got inside. Nothing happened for a moment, and then she saw Moe fly through the windshield a second before the car door opened. Gary stepped out and stepped forward.
Jan cracked her knuckles. "You know, Gary, I was wondering if you were man enough to come out here and get your own money. I had to beat up your poor goons though. Of course looks like you took care of Moe yourself."
Gary walked towards Jan without the least bit of hesitation. "Not bad, little girl. You handled my guys easy enough, but I'm going to have what's mine if I have to tear this whole place apart, or tear you apart. Nobody keeps Gary Pulser from getting what he wants."
Jan laughed. "Man! Do ego maniacs always have to talk in the third person?" She saw Gary's face redden. "I bet you cheated in that poker game to win this money in the first place", Jan nudged him.
"I don't have to cheat."
"Liar!", Brian yelled. "You cheated to win the second time."
Gary's eyes fixed on Brian and on the bag of money in his hands. He started towards him. Jan just shook her head. "Brian, I told you to keep your mouth shut. Go take the money and stand in the corner over there", she scolded him like a child. Brian looked at Gary and hurried behind Jan.
"So I have to get through you to get my money."
"You mean the money you won at an illegal poker game six days ago?"
"Yeah, that money."
Jan reached into her top and pulled out the tiny little microphone hidden there. "Did you guys get that?", she asked with a smirk on her healing face.
Gary's face became a mask of pure rage as the realization of what was going on hit him. "You set me up!", he roared. The money no longer mattered. He had to get out. He turned towards his car only to see Moe helping in the last of his comrades before he jumped in the car and slammed the door. The engine cranked up. Gary started running. Moe put the car in reverse, and pushed the pedal all the way to the floor. He had taken his last beating from Gary Pulser, but the car didn't accelerate fast enough. The car started towards the closed bay door. Gary caught the car under the front bumper, and lifted the useless wheels of the ground. He then leaned back and lifted the entire car off the ground long ways. His men were abandoning him. He was going to kill all of them. He lifted the car higher up. The tires were still spinning until he slammed the car down to the concrete. All four ties busted; the axles broke, and the chassis bent. Smoke and steam enveloped the car. He prepared for another lift, but Jan was behind him. She wound up and kicked him in the side of the head before picking him up and tossing him to the side of the room. He slid along the smooth concrete until he hit a tire machine and stopped after knocking everything over in his path.
There was activity in the car. The men crawled from the shattered windows. "You'd better get out of here", Jan said simply. The men didn't need any encouragement. They knew when a situation was out of their league. Jan just hoped this Gary fellow wasn't out of hers. She took a breath and readied herself when she turned towards the side of the room where she had thrown him, but he wasn't there. She looked left and right in a nearly frantic circle for him. She hoped he hadn't run out. He hadn't.
"Look out!", Brian yelled at the top of his lungs as he saw Gary ran towards Jan. His strength propelling him at a great speed. Jan spun in time for his fist to slam into the side of her face. The blow impacted harder than a jack hammer, and he followed it with a blow to Jan's ribs. Her feet came off the ground and she grunted loudly. Gary's face was twisted in effort and his left arm flew at tremendous speed. This punch was the hardest of the lot. It rocked Jan from the top of her head to her feet. She slumped to her knees, totally unable to defend herself. Gary took Jan by the back of the head. He pulled her with his powerful arms at the same time as his leg came forward. The point of his knee hit Jan in the center of her face. She felt her nose break and her eye balls move in her skull. The blow was so hard, there was a mini concussion wave that cracked the window of a car nearby. Jan uttered a single sound and fell onto her back. Gary raised his leg and stomped on Jan's stomach with his heel. He was surprised at how hard her abs were even in her current state, but blood frothed to her lips after she doubled up from the blow. Gary wasn't nearly done. He went to a knee next to her head and punched her normally beautiful face so hard the cement cracked behind her head. She was beyond moaning.
Gary was breathing heavily when he finally stopped. "You could take Moe's shots, but not mine, eh? Its too bad, I thought I might get a little fight out of you, but instead you're just like all the rest." He reached down and put his thick fingers under Jan's top and pulled out the tiny little microphone. He looked at it, and his face twisted again, this time in anger and humiliation. He crushed the little mic between his thumb and index finger before dusting his hands over Jan. He stood up and snatched up Jan by her shoulders. She was completely limp in his arms. He raised her over his head and threw her towards the side the of the room like a footballer's throw in. Jan flew towards the side of the room where the semi tractors were serviced. Jan bounced along the concrete floor. A Kenworth car hauler tractor shook a little when she hit the steel post of the heavy truck lift. That's where she was going to stay until, Gary got an idea. He went to a nearly repaired car and lifted it up with no apparent difficulty. He marched it over to where Jan lay. He bent his legs a little and then tossed the car up to the top of the car hauler. There was a very loud crunching when the car landed on top of the Kenworth. It had landed upside down, but that was fine. It gave him a bigger target. He picked Jan up again. He gave her a quick look. Her face had been so gorgeous, but his blows had done a good job rearranging it. It was too bad really. He threw Jan to the very top of the pyramid he had made.
Jan stirred just the slightest bit with she hit, but Gary didn't even notice. He went to the controls for the lift. There was hum from the motors after he switched them on. He turned all the dials to full, and then pressed the button. The eight jack lift had been designed to lift even the heaviest vehicles so the 16,000 pound truck plus the 3000 pound car were no problem at all. The lift rose quickly.
Gary saw it starting up, and turned his attention towards Brian. "Where ya hiding, Brian?", he teased. "You thought your friend was going to stop me. I told you that story about my mother to keep you from doing some stupid shit like this. Now I'm going to have to find you and kill you. I don't have a choice."
Jan opened her eyes a little when she felt everything rising. Her headache was monumental, and her face hurt in a dozen different places, but she found that she was quickly able to put the pain aside. She blinked a couple of times, but finally she opened her eyes fully. She focused just in time to see the steel I-beam. Gary had planned for the lift to smash Jan into the thick concrete ceiling, but he hadn't noticed the structural support that ran the length of the building from column to column. The 4" beam ran perpendicular to her, just above her mid section. The powerful lift rose, and Jan didn't have time to even reach out. The cold steel pressed against the middle of her stomach, but it was going to keep rising. Jan did the only thing she could do; she tensed her abs.
Jan held her flex with all that she had. There was no way she would let that lift compress her innards against that beam. She reached out her arms towards the concrete ceiling, but it too far. She had nothing to leverage against. Jan's stomach was getting crushed with the full power of the heavy duty lift. Her head thrashed from side to side in the struggle. It felt like the machine was trying to cut her in half. Jan groaned as the bottom of the steel beam dented her plate armor like muscles. The pressure was enormous, and the pain grew with every millimeter the lift raised.
Jan wasn't one to give in easily though. Her face fixed in concentration, she took a deep breath and crunched her abs harder than she could remember crunching before. When Jan flexed her abs, a landscape of grooves and valleys appeared on her smooth skin. This time though the resistance was constant and unceasing. Jan looked down her body. The eight blocks of muscle on her midsection flexed with unequaled sharpness and hardness. There was a stalemate between the heavy duty lift and some of the hardest abs ever. It didn't last long. There was an explosive noise when the windows of the upturned car Jan was lying on shattered at the same time. The roof supports of the vehicle weren't designed to take this much pressure, and they were bending.
"No", Brian whimpered. He was hiding beneath a car and he couldn't see the top of the lift, but he could see the pistons ramming and he could hear the car being crushed. He assumed Jan was on top, and he was right. He was pretty sure that he wasn't going to make it out, but he thought only about how he had brought his friend into this, and she wasn't going to make it either. Gary didn't bother to look over his shoulder when the car started crumpling under the strain. There was no need to watch that girl being crushed
Jan held her breath and her crunch while the car flattened. All that power and all that pressure was focused on Jan's abs, but they held. Finally after only a short while, the lift stopped. It had reached its maximum height. Jan released her flex and the pent up pain washed through her body, but she put it aside. She sucked in her stomach this time and slid from under the I-beam. She knelt next to the mangled car and pulled up her top a little. Her mid section had a bright red line in the imprint of the bottom of that beam going across it. She rubbed her stomach and jumped down to the floor. She could feel her body healing as she stood there. Something was different this time. She could feel her internal wounds healing very quickly, and she could feel her face healing as well, but the rage was slowly fading until a few seconds after hitting the floor it was gone, but her body was still healing much faster than it normally would without her rage. She didn't have time to analyze things. The healing felt great, but she needed the power. She needed the rage.
Gary was about 100 feet away, stalking Brian. He had his back to Jan, and didn't think he would have to worry about her again, but she had other ideas. Jan was stalking him. She moved from column to column getting closer with each move. She was going to attack Gary with a fury he had never seen. Jan was tired of being on the receiving end of beatings, tired of being the hunted. As she stalked Gary, she lost any doubt that she still had. Jan once again felt like the huntress.
Gary reached under the bumper of a car and quickly flipped the 2.5 ton vehicle over like it was an end table. He saw nothing but stained concrete. Brian had already scurried under another car further down the line, but he was running out of places to hide. The building had plenty of doors, but they were all in the open, and a couple of them had the 15 second fire door locks on them. In fifteen seconds, Gary Pulser could have torn Brian into several pieces. Then Brian's thoughts turned again to Jan. He had to keep from weeping. He never meant for any of this to happen. He pictured her in his head, so strong and proud, and yet funny, and even tender when she wanted to be. That beautiful young woman was dead, and it was all his fault.
Brian hadn't noticed that Gary had come to the side of the vehicle he was underneath. He didn't notice until everything around him brightened as the car was tossed aside like a toy. "Oh my God!" Brian scrambled to get to up, but he ended up scurrying towards the tools along the back wall. "Here! Here's the money!" Brian held the bag out in front of him as it would some distract Gary from his intended target.
"Its too late for the money to save you. You've messed me up here in Atlanta, getting the cops involved. You ruined a lot of hard work. Now I'll have start up again somewhere else with a new name and stuff. You didn't really think my name was Gary did you? No, Gary Pulser was the name of a guy I killed in Seattle years ago. I tore his body up so bad, the cops didn't even know that there was a body to be found. So when I go on to the next stop, I think I might be Brian. It'll make me think of you." Gary looked down at Brian's terrified face, and roared in laugher. He didn't know that Brian was party faking. To Brian's amazement, Jan was coming up behind Gary like a predator. When she was close enough, she struck.
Jan body hardened as she threw this punch. Her pecs, traps, shoulders, and her abs were so ripped and cut that Brian's ruse was blown. He looked past Gary to the most beautifully sculpted body he had ever seen. Then Jan's fist impacted Gary's body just below the ribcage. It hit with enough force to split rocks. Gary's body looked like it would fold in half, but he recovered enough to through a lazy back hand punch. Jan ducked it easily, but it gave Gary room to maneuver out of her reach. He gathered himself and circled. He was stalling and Jan knew it. She moved like a boxer cutting off the ring. With each step Jan put Gary closer and closer to the wall. He knew that he was almost out of room, so Gary attacked. He had planned it out. He faked a kick low on Jan's right leg. She twisted it to absorb the blow, but as she did, he lunged and punched her in the chin. It wasn't hard enough to hurt, but hard enough to stun. He then kicked Jan in the side of her knee. Her leg bent and she went down. Gary grabbed her head to knee her like he had done earlier, but Jan slipped her head to the right and grabbed the back of Gary's leg and stood up quickly. Gary hopped to stay on balance, but a quick sweep from Jan sent him crashing to the floor with her on top. Under other circumstances he might have enjoyed that, but he would not enjoy this at all. He tried to put her off, but she parried every blow and broke through every defense until she reached his chest. Gary's strength presented a challenge to normal techniques, because he could do things that regular people couldn't. Jan pressed against the concrete floor and rocketed forward. She leaned back and dropped an elbow. The first blow stunned him, and the second one opened a deep gash on his forehead. She put her fingers in the gash and pulled his head to her right. Gary screamed in pain, but Jan kept pulling. When his head was turned enough, she hammered him in the side of the head. Gary did the only thing he could. He opened his mouth and bit Jan on the forearm.
"Ahhh!!!", Jan yelled and pulled her arm from his mouth. That gave Gary time though. He took her shoulders and threw her to the side as hard as he could. Jan's back and side hit a wrecked Ford. Her body did more damage to the car than the accident it had been in. Gary got to his feet. He thought he had a chance now, but he was wrong. He'd already wasted his best chance, and now Jan was really pissed.
Gary saw her and charged at her. He knew that he had to get through this girl to freedom. He threw a lunging punch, but Jan wasn't as dazed as she had been letting on. His punch missed by hairs. Jan took his shoulder with both hands and tossed him to the ground. She hammered him in the side of the head again. He went down to the concrete. His eyes were unfocused in his head. Jan had stunned him, but he wasn't out. She snatched him up and threw him as hard as she could towards one of the support columns. The building shook when Gary's back slammed into the column. Jan came in like a bulldozer. She threw punches, elbows, kicks, and knees until blood squirted from a dozen wounds on Gary's face and neck. At the end his head looked like it would come off of his body after each of Jan's blows. She poured weeks of frustration and fear into those blows. She was finished with being scared. Jan had almost forgotten how dangerous she was, not anymore. She remembered
Gary slid to the floor after a particularly hard body blow that had broken three of his ribs. Jan felt her knuckles break through the resistance of his muscles and of his bones. She felt the bones shatter from her power. Jan knew how hard his bones were. Super strong people always had extremely hard bones, and she had just broken some of his with a punch. She drew hger arm back and punched him in the same spot again. Her delts and pecs and obliques were sculpted perfection as she threw this punch. Her punch went deep into his insides. She stood over him gulping down air as fast as her lung could take it in, while Gary laid there and bled. Jan flexed her fingers a couple of times before stepping away.
Brian came up behind her, but very carefully. "I would say something", he began, "but I don't know where to start. I knew you were a bad ass, Jan, but you never told me how bad ass."
"There's a lot you don't know about me." Jan's voice was still heated with the rage that was the core of her power. She waited a few moments before she spoke again. "Do you still have my phone?" Brian reached into his pocket and pulled it out. Jan dialed Agent Wills. "You can make an approach, but the principle is a Class S Level 3."
Agent Wills paused. "We're going to have to send for the proper equipment to handle him. Can you stand by?"
Jan sighed. "I guess I can, but make it quick."
"We'll send the chopper."
Jan turned again to look at Gary. She didn't want him to get behind her like he had done last time. There was no chance of that. Brian hadn't let the man out of his sight. Gary was awake, but he was in great pain. He had underestimated that girl. She had done some serious damage. His broken ribs poked the sides of his lung when he inhaled, and he was sure his face looked like had been mauled by a dog. He wasn't out of tricks yet. The rest of his body was still, but his left hand moved imperceptibly. Jan's onslaught had broken this column worse than he had done when he had crushed it over Brian's head. She had broken so much concrete that the rebar was exposed. He had his hand on some of that rebar and he was slowly working a piece out of the column. Inch by inch, he pulled until there was about three feet of it sticking out on the back side of the pillar. That was enough he judged, then with a squeeze he compressed the steel. His next move had to be perfect.
Gary moved with great quickness and strength. He jumped to his feet at the same time he brought the rebar around like a sold still whip. Jan and Brian were both caught in his surprise. He had them. The end of the rebar broke the sound barrier as it swung in its arc. Gary's only mistake had been his target. Brian had been closer, and he had judged that one blow from the rebar would have been fatal for him, but he should have remembered that Brian was no threat.
Jan grabbed a handful of Brian's shirt and started for the ground. She was quick, she just hoped that she was quick enough. It was so close that the rebar brushed the back of Brian's hair, but didn't touch anything else. The force Gary's whiff made him lose balance. Before he could drop the rebar, Jan rolled towards Gary and brought her knees in. She extended her long legs and put the soles of her running shoes against Gary's back. When she felt the contact, she straightened her legs with all the power in her perfectly muscled legs. Her quads bulged impressively as she launched Gary, like a rocket, towards the ceiling. He hit the concrete ceiling face first. He didn't even have time to scream. The impact was so hard, cracks radiated out away from him. Gary fell back to the ground. He looked completely broken this time. Soon, the lights and sounds of police sirens announced that the cops were getting close to coming in.
Jan helped Brian to his feet. He was scared out his mind. "So all this time, Jan, you never told me that you were a super girl."
Jan laughed. "I'm not a super girl. I can't fly, or shoot laser beams."
Brian wasn't laughing though. He was getting a headache. Memories came back that had been repressed. He frowned and pointed at Jan. "Howard! Howard said that you were some sort of freak, and then I saw you hit by a car! Oh my that's right." He backed away, but then he stopped. "You had those people erase my memory."
"Not erased, but close enough. So now you know. Can you handle it, or not?", Jan asked him plainly.
Brian thought about it for a few moments. "What choice do I have?"
"Any choice you want to have."
"I don't want my memory erased again, and I can keep a secret." He rushed over to Jan then. "I can be in your inner sanctum, a confidant sort of like Alfred!"
"So I can trust you?"
The smile dropped from Brian's face and he looked up at Jan. "Yeah, you can trust me. I'd rather die than spill your beans."
Jan grinned, but not for long.
"You both can both die!", Gary yelled. It sounded strange since his lungs contained blood. He was behind the column that Jan's powerful blows that damaged. He had his arms wrapped around it. With great effort, he squeezed the column at the same time he pulled up. It sounded and felt like an earthquake. Everything shook and then started coming down, when Gary ripped the support from where it had been for 30 years. The ceiling, the roof, and the second floor started crashing down. Jan grabbed Brian and started running towards the back, but Gary wasn't finished. He ran too, at full speed towards another column. His shoulder slammed into it, cracking it immediately. "If I don't get out, nobody does!", he cried and pulled this column. Too much damage had been done. The building supports started to fail and the entire rear of the building began to collapse. Jan knew they weren't going to make it out. Dust and debris rained down all around them. She pushed Brian to the floor near a pilaster and threw up her arms praying for the best.
Brian wasn't sure what had happened, but he knew that he was alive. He could feel some small debris on him, but after doing a self exam he was overjoyed that all his fingers and toes worked. He was in a small space, and it was darker than night, but he was alive. "Jan", he called out in a loud whisper. No answer. "Jan!" Still no answer. He reached into his pocket and pulled out his key chain. He hoped his little flash light worked. It did, but he almost wished it hadn't. Jan, the friend who had saved his life, was slumped in midair, impaled on a twisted piece of steel. Blood trickled from the corners of her mouth, and blood ran from the wound just above her abdomen.
"Jan!" He couldn't stand so he crawled to her. His hands were shaking and tears streamed down his face. He looked and saw that she had used her body as a lever to keep a huge piece of floor and ceiling from crushing him. He felt like his throat was closing. A piece of structural steel had fallen and in the crush of falling debris, the piece of metal had stabbed into her. He reached out his hand and pushed some of her hair back before putting his hand on her neck to check her pulse. There was a chance, not much of one from the looks of her wounds, but a small one. He pressed his fingers against her artery. As he felt for a pulse, Jan sucked in a breath.
"Oh my God!", Brian exclaimed for the third time that afternoon. "You're alive!"
"Of course I'm alive. I'm talking aren't I?" Jan frowned and looked at Brian's face in the low light. "What's wrong with you?" Her voice was horse and it hurt to breathe. Brian couldn't speak. He just pointed. Jan actually chuckled when she looked down and saw the steel sticking out of her. "No wonder it hurts so much to breathe." She grabbed the steel with both hands. Her triceps bulged out and her forearms flexed impressively as she pushed her entire body off the poll. Jan fell to the ground in the tight little space after freeing herself. The wound was odd shaped, and it looked terrible. She put her hand over the hole and looked over at Brian.
"I shouldn't have been so freaked out. I did see you get hit by a car."
"That was pretty bad, but this was worse." Jan tried to laugh again, but it hurt more now than it did before. She tried to call on her rage to speed her healing, but instead a calm came over her. She could feel her body healing very quickly, but she couldn't tell why.
Brian sighed and looked over at Jan's healing body. Despite what had happened to her, Jan's body looked utterly perfect. "Jan, I haven't ever been in this position, but you know how I collect all the comics and stuff."
"Yeah, Brian, but this isn't a comic book. This shit hurts like you wish you never ever know."
"I understand that, Jan. I'm just saying that you realize that you're like the woman of my wildest dreams. When I was younger, I dreamed of a woman like you."
Jan rubbed her fingers across the fresh tender skin over her wound before she looked over at Brian. She felt a wave of sympathy come over her. "Brian, I can't be your fantasy and your friend. That won't work."
"You're my friend", he answered quickly. "I don't want that to change. I just wanted to explain that when I see your muscles in action, I'm going to be on a high."
"Get ready then. I have to get us out of here." Jan got to her feet, but there was no room to stand up. Her knees were bent as she pressed her hands against the thick concrete slab that had protected them and also trapped them. Brian shined the light where she could see what she was doing. Jan had to dig deeper to find her rage and her strength, but finally she did. Then he got a show.
Jan's entire body swelled. Her triceps and shoulders were wondrous, but her legs caught his eye. Jan's long athletic legs always looked terrific. Heads turned wherever she went, but the way her quads danced and played under her skin made Brian feel light headed. Then the huge slab of reinforced cement started to rise. The higher it went, the harder Jan's muscles got. Brian had to force himself not to pant. She looked so powerful holding a hunk of concrete that weighed at least 30 times what she did. She lifted it up until what had been a sliver of light turned into a flood.
"Ok, Brian, go that way", Jan ordered. Her voice sounded strained, but it was more from the pain than from the weight. Once Brian was safely out of the way, Jan toss the slab to the side. They looked around. The front of the building had withstood Gary's damage, but the entire back of the building had collapsed. They were walking on what had been the roof of the large structure.
"Wonder what happened to Gary?", Jan called out.
"Right here! Right here!", Brian yelled at the top of his lungs.
Jan held her chest as she ran. She stopped and looked down at Gary Pulser, or whatever his real name was. He had been partially buried by the rubble, and a particularly large chunk of the second floor and roof had pinned him to the debris beneath him. They saw very quickly that he wasn't dead. Jan stood over him without any pity on her face.
"Go ahead and end it", he croaked in a weak voice. "You win."
"You're damn right I win", Jan told him. She stepped behind him. He tried to turn his head, but he couldn't turn it far enough. Jan knelt down leaned closer to him. She had lost whatever fear of him she'd had. "I've got a better idea. I'm going to make sure you spend the rest of your life in prison."
Gary tried to laugh, but failed. There was too much weight on his chest. "There isn't a jail that can hold me!"
"Somebody built one that could hold me." Jan's arm flashed out and encircled Gary's neck quickly. Brian got one more show. Jan's biceps bunched up and pulsed as she squeezed the consciousness out of Gary. His head slumped down and Jan stood up. The paramedics had come and so had the fire department by the time Jan and Brian walked out the front door. It seemed silly since half the building was a pile of rubble.
Agent Wills was the first to her. He threw a Federal Law Enforcement parka over her to hide the bloody hole in the middle of her once very nice top. "You okay?"
Jan nodded. "I'll be ok. Did you guys get the feed from the mike?" Agent Wills nodded in his sage like way. "Good", Jan continued. "The suspect is buried in the rubble. I knocked him out."
"Don't worry we'll get him." Agent Wills lead Jan to his car, and had her sit down. She told him what had happened in there. After listening he nodded again and patted Jan's bare shoulder. "Do you think Mel can handle Gary?"
Jan cocked her head and thought about it. "Yeah, he can. He better be careful with him though."
"Mel still wants to have a sit down with you. I promised him that I would ask"
"Fine. I'll let you know when."
Agent Wills leaned against the car. "Ok, what about Brian. You said he knows about you. You're not with us anymore, but do you want him to forget again?"
"No", Jan answered quickly. "I don't want to do that to him again."
Agent Wills seemed to disagree, but he said, "Its your call."
Jan grinned up at him. "Ok, I need a ride to my apartment. I have a gathering to get to, and I'm not sitting in my car like this."
Agent Wills went to the driver side of the car and pulled something down from the visor before coming back to where Jan was sitting. "I'll have one of my guys take you, and another one to drive your car home. Give this to Alisha, and tell her I said happy birthday." He handed Jan a colored envelope with a card inside. "What you thought I forgot? I might look old, but I have a mind like a steel trap."
Jan and Brian rode in an government vehicle to her apartment. She set a land speed record showering and getting dressed. She told Brian to behave himself as she rushed out the door. She would have brought him along, but he didn't have a change of clothes. He would just shower there and wash his clothes while they were gone.
"Where's Jan?", Alisha's former roommate Miranda asked the group as they started into the restaurant.
"She's on her way. She had to take care of something in Marietta", Alisha explained. "I hope she makes it", Alisha whispered in Sara's ear.
Jan came in not long after they were seated. "Sorry about that folks", she said and took a seat. She looked completely normal. She moved a little slower, but other than that, nobody would have known that a building had fallen on her earlier.
"How did it go?", Sara asked with a thought.
"Well, I'm here", Jan thought back. "I'll tell you all about it when we get home."
The gathering was very low key, and very nice. Sara's father William and her brother Charles had come. It had turned out that William Hewitt had been in Atlanta on business, and he had sent the company plane down to Mississippi to pick up his son. Sara was quite pleased to see them even if Charles seemed a little distant.
The good-byes lasted for a long time. Alisha didn't want to put her infant brother down, but after a while the group went their separate ways. Avery and Melissa went to their bedroom, while Jan, Sara, Alisha, and a showered Brian ended up in Alisha's room.
"So, is it normal living with Jan and her super powers?", Brian asked Alisha and Sara.
The looked at each other. "What do you mean?"
Brian nearly jumped from his chair. How could they be so cavalier? "She crushed a car with her abs for goodness sake!"
"In a reverse sort of way", Jan clarified. She was really sore now, and trying not to move.
"Anyway, you guys act like its just normal. She's like one of a kind."
Sara and Alisha chuckled. "She sure is, and yeah we think its perfectly normal."
"That is so cool", Brian began. "I've wondered my whole life if someone like Jan existed and here she is."
"So if Jan has special powers, what if there were other people with special powers?"
Brian's face lit up. "You mean you know other people with special powers!?! Where are they? I want to meet them!"
"They might be closer than you think", Alisha teased.
Sara laughed. Brian was like a hormone soaked freshman after a cheerleader. "Close the door, Brian and you might get a chance to find out."
He jumped up, put his hand on the door, and then paused. "What's gonna happen when I close this door?"
"Only one way to know for sure." Alisha had a twinkle in her brown eyes as she looked at Brian standing there. He was apprehensive, but he had to know. When he closed the door, his world went dark.
more coming very very soon!!
Chapter 01 Chapter 02 Chapter 03
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