Continuing our series, Angel has just jumped from her boat onto Gwynnie Bartlett’s boat to engage her in less-than-gentlemanly fisticuffs.
[This begins the “Boat Fight” Engagement.] Gwynnie locks the controls to face Angel and defends herself with intelligent, economical moves. The skiff roars on down the waterway toward the busy shipping lanes of the Thames, as the two women battle on the aft deck. Fists and feet fly back and forth. [Stunt 1] Gwynnie has more training but Angel is more durable, which is good because Gwynnie plants a solid kick into her midsection and sends Angel back to crash into the aft deck railing. [Stunt 2]
Gwynnie grabs a gaff and swings it downward. Angel rolls left to avoid the first blow, then right to dodge the second, then sweeps Gwynnie’s feet out from under her. [Stunt 3] They wrestle for control of the gaff as the skiff bumps and bangs at high speed along the edge of a pier. Gwynnie manages to get a superior position and Angel has to devote all her effort to keep the gaff from crushing her throat. [Stunt 4]
Gwynnie grins down at her through bloody lips as she leans her weight on the long haft. “Yer goin’ to die now, bitch.”
Strong, black-gloved hands wrap around Gwynnie’s head and twist it to one side with a sickening crunch. [Stunt 5] Mikio tosses the dead Bartlett sister aside and overboard. Angel lies on the deck, gasping for breath, and glares up at him. “It’s about fucking time.”
He bows. “I did not wish to interfere with your battle. Some consider such an interruption rude and dishonorable.”
“I don’t give a shit about honor.” Angel sits up. Movement overhead catches her eye.
Something is in the sky that shouldn’t be there. It takes her a moment to realize it’s a motorcycle flying toward them, and Gladys Bartlett has just back-flipped off the seat. As her head and shoulders rotate upward, she fires the gun clutched in both hands. [Stunt 6, and one I’m damn proud of!]
Mikio moves with the speed only a cyborg ninja can. He jerks his hand in between Angel’s head and the onrushing bullet and catchesit. [Stunt 7] As Gladys lands on the deck in a combat crouch, her motorcycle crashes into the driver’s station and obliterates it. The cycle’s rear wheel catches Mikio in the back of his head and he goes down. [Stunt 8]
Angel kicks upward and sends Gladys’ gun flying into the Thames.[Stunt 9] Unfazed, Gladys raises both her arms and flexes her wrists. Ten-inch stiletto blades slide out from the bottom of each palm, and she goes for Angel. Angel backpedals. Those blades could be coated with anything, or be hollow and ready to inject who-knows-what in through any scratch. Her foot bumps against the discarded gaff and she flips it up into her hands. [Stunt 10] Gladys backpedals as Angel spins the gaff at her like a quarterstaff. Angel forces her all the way to the aft of the boat before Gladys catches the gaff on one of her blades and cuts it in half. Undaunted, Angel swings the severed handle at her, but Gladys cuts it again to leave Angel holding a few inches of splintered wood. [Stunt 11]
Gladys freezes, her eyes focused on something behind Angel. Angel knows it’s a trick, but then she hears the characteristic shingof metal sliding on metal.
Mikio stands, backlit by the burning wreckage of the motorcycle, holding a katana. She turns back to Gladys, expecting to have to dodge those blades again.
The look on Gladys’ face isn’t one of fear, but of indecision and something that resembles recognition. Angel doesn’t squander the opportunity. She ducks inside Gladys’ guard and drives a forearm into the woman’s throat. Gladys tips back over the rail and drops beneath the cold surface of the Thames. [Stunt 12]
Mikio steps up next to Angel, his sword held at the ready, and watches the waves behind the boat for any sign of Gladys. Angel glances sidelong at him, reassessing her opinion of him. “Nice sword,” she says.
He bows his head forward. A port opens in the back of his neck and he slides the sword back down inside his back alongside his spine. “It is a marvel of modern metallurgy. Flexible enough to bend and twist without hampering my own movements, yet sturdy enough to perform its original functions.”
“My, aren’t we special? I bet it plays hell when you get a shiatsu massage.” Angel looks back into the water. No sign of Gladys. “I think she’s gone. I hit her pretty good.”
“I suspect you are correct. However, we have a new problem to contend with.”
Gladys’ motorcycle ruined the driver’s controls, and she doesn’t know how they’re going to stop the boat’s progress as it roars across the river. The answer becomes apparent as Angel sees they’re heading full-speed toward a huge freighter loaded with containers. Isn’t that just ironic, she thinks. The behemoth can’t stop or change course to avoid them, and they’re helpless to halt the skiff’s progress. She can see the curious heads of the crew peeking over the deck rails. The skiff won’t do much more than cosmetic damage to the heavy freighter, but that’s small consolation to Angel.
“Shit,” she utters for what she hopes will be the last time of the day. “I hope they get us out quickly. That water is fucking cold.”
Mikio nods. “I’m certain they’ll abide by maritime regulations.” He opens the emergency kit affixed to the aft railing and removes the dye pack. “I suggest we stay together.”
“What the fuck ever.” They have only seconds to get off the skiff before it will collide with the freighter. Angel grabs one life preserver and Mikio the other, and they both tumble off the back rail into the water. The shock of the cold takes Angel’s breath away, but that’s mitigated by her getting to watch the skiff’s impact on the massive steel wall of the freighter hull. She’s a little disappointed that it doesn’t explode, but the carbon fiber hull breaks apart into splinters that are swept underneath the foam churning around the freighter. [Stunt 13]
True to Mikio’s prediction, the freighter crew rescues them with a loading crane and one brave asshole who rides it down in a sling. Angel is shivering too much to thank him properly, but resists the urge to feed him his own toes when he grabs a generous handful of her ass while lifting her to safety. She figures he’s earned the grope. [This ends the “Boat Fight” Engagement and the entire Sequence, which consists of four distinct Engagements – Dock Gunfight, Foot Chase, Boat Chase, Boat Fight. Each Engagement has an average of 8 distinct Stunts, some more, some less. The entire Sequence fills a chapter and a half. Any questions?]