When we last left our heroes, they were nowhere to be found. Instead, the villains had just stolen a hostage from a group of dickweeds who stole him to make them look bad. The Brazilian and the Mad Waxxer escaped successfully, but what of their plot to hold the hostage even more hostage and force the important people in the community to reverse their decision to hire the Pinkertons..
The Mad Waxxer wanted to send a DVD with a video on it to put the screws to Theodore Hunnicutt, but the Brazilian kept ragging him about that being old-fashioned. “You don’t understand,” the Waxxer explained. “We can send the video with Theodora.” Here, he nodded toward his girlfriend and Theodore’s daughter before continuing. “It’s an implied threat toward her.”
“It’s still behind the times. What would we do if she had broken it? She’s supposed to be a ditz, remember? No offense,” the Brazilian said to Theodora, who smiled warmly and gave him the finger.
Theodora spoke up next. “I love this discussion, but how about you two do a video, I send it from my email, and you pretend you got access to it somehow. It’s digital and it’s still threatening. It would even throw them off the scent of how I found where they were keeping the Chief by making it seem like one of you is a hacker.”
“That works,” the Waxxer said, glad he had Theodora.
“Fine by me,” the Brazilian said, glad that at least the Waxxer knew Theodora.
Theodora rolled her eyes at the smoldering intensity of the rivals, wondering how much friendlier the pair would be if they fucked. She concluded it wouldn’t change much, and the pair would probably get into an argument over whether or not Brazilian spanking Waxxer’s ass got her boyfriend off. At least it made an attractive image for her to think about while the pair argued again. “When you two are done showing off your professionalism, we have a video to shoot,” she said.
Theodore Hunnicutt the Third wasn’t having a good day. He had asked to speak to a supervisor, and now that supervisor was in his office, flanked by a pair of guards. “When I hired the Pinkerton Agency, I thought I ws getting the elite of private threat management companies. You have a sterling reputation for dealing with superhuman threats. I fear your reputation is overblown.”
“Mr. Hunnicutt, I appreciate your time and, more importantly, your money. Rest assured, we are the best. And the reason we are the best is because we know to study each unique situation involving the exceptionally-abled and we have the resources to react accordingly. While you did hire a team to deal with the two individuals causing problems for your family, the team hired to obtain the Chief of Police was not chosen in order to deal with them. They were chosen to obtain and hold a trained and experienced police officer. Their failure was due to circumstances outside their control and knowledge they couldn’t have had. Two people with the power to stick to things found the safehouse you provided. There was no leak on our end.”
Theodore leaned forward in his chair. “I didn’t hire you to talk about why you can’t solve the problem. I hired you to solve the problem! Your men were supposed to guard the Chief of Police in a situation where you were hired to deal with supervillains who kidnap people. You said that your job is to figure out what needs to be done to handle the problem. My role is to pay you and tell you what to do. I’ve paid you, so figure it out and get Johanssen back!”
With such an important meeting going on, it’s understandable that Theodore Hunnicutt didn’t interrupt it over an email from his daughter. He figured it was about some silly thing she was doing now. He also thought it would be a good way to take his mind off the failures of the Pinkertons, so he looked at it after they’d left his office. He nearly broke the screen texting his secretary to stop the Pinkerton representative and direct her back to his office when he realized what had been sent to him.
The representative found the whole situation quite amusing when he started up the video. She held her hand out for it as it started up. “May I?” She accepted the phone to watch.
It began with an image of the Chief of Police, handcuffed, sitting in a chair. The man’s head was still red, but the gash had been treated and bandaged. He’d had a bath and a shave as well. “My name is Captain… Chief Phil Johanssen,” the man could have sounded worse while discussing the promotion that had been prompted by the rescue of high profile hostages from the two warring supervillains before they’d joined forces.
The Chief went on, his eyes moving from side to side as he read. “I am saying this of my own free will and am not being forced to read this by my captors, the magnificent Mad Waxxer, whose skill at kidnapping is matched only by his skill at lovemaking and writing. And the Brazilian, who is also present.”
“Fuck you, numbnuts,” the Brazilian said as he stepped into view. “You couldn’t have done it without me. We’re here to say we did not kidnap the Chief.” He looked down at the handcuffed Chief in question, then looked back up at the camera. “…initially. We didn’t kidnap him initially. Someone else took him in order to allow the rich and powerful the excuse they needed to bring in the Pinkertons. A private police force in service only to the rich and powerful? What could go wrong, right?”
“Not only that,” said a voice from off screen as the camera jittered. “But it was one of the area’s rich, favored sons in whose warehouse we found Chief Johanssen here.”
“It’s true,” the Chief said, “These two had nothing to do with attacking me at HQ. They took me from the people who really grabbed me, ex-military people. They’re treating me well, treated my wound, but they have a demand they would like me to pass on. All you have to do to get me back is cancel the plan to bring in the Pinkertons. It saves you money, too.”
“Read the room, dude,” the Brazilian said, leaning on Johanssen’s shoulder.
The Mad Waxxer spoke again, jostling the camera even more. “If a moral argument worked on them, we wouldn’t be in this situation. Sometimes, you have to be pragmatic and appeal to their greed.” The camera turned to look up at the Mad Waxxer’s mask. The man smiled his pearly whites and went on, “Besides, it would be too coarse to resort to obvious threats. Hmm… how to send this to you, though?”
The video cut out there, but Ted Hunnicutt spoke, “That video was sent to me from my daughter’s email account.”
The Pinkerton representative clicked her tongue against the roof of her mouth. “That is unfortunate.”
“We have to get him back,” Hunnicutt said.
The rep raised her eyebrow. “It’s admirable that you’re willing to stick with us after we failed you so badly.”
“Can you find them?” Hunnicutt asked. “This isn’t over yet. They won’t beat me.”
“There is an astonishing amount of metadata available in video and images. If you can provide my people a copy of the video, we can find the phone that shot it and trace its location. You said this was sent from your daughter’s account? The one he keeps taking?” She asked.
“Yes, that’s the threat he mentions at the end. He wants me to know she isn’t safe,” he said.
The rep looked up at one of her guards, then back to Mr. Hunnicutt. “Have you ever considered that she might be involved with him?”
Theodore snorted. “That’s ridiculous. She wouldn’t date some thug like that.”
“Uh huh…” the Rep said. Her other guard leaned down and showed her something on his phone. “In light of the full situation, while we can find where the video originated, we will have to save that for a more formal renegotiation of terms.”
“Vultures! What are you doing?” he called after them as the Rep got up, left the phone on his desk, and walked out. Wasting a second on incredulity that they’d walk out on him, he tried to follow.
His assistant met him at the door, her phone in hand, asking, “Sir, you need to see this.”
When his phone alerted him to the breaking news, the Mad Waxxer very nearly spat out his celebratory wine. Theodora handled it much better, finishing her sip before asking after what happened. She took one look and called out to the other room. “Brazilian! What did you do?”
The Brazilian entered, wearing a shirt and flip-flops now. “You know already?”
The Mad Waxxer very nearly tossed his glass at the man, but set it down. “I have been keeping abreast of developments regarding the wealthy and our little dispute this entire time. Did you think I would miss it?”
The Brazilian smiled, wide but close-mouthed. “Glad to hear you say that. I have friends at that paper. Circulation’s never been better than during this fight we had. Now they get the scoop on us nabbing the head cop and making demands of your dad.” He nodded toward Theodora.
She shook her head. “You work at the paper.”
“You said that, not me,” the Brazilian said, not her.
“This is what you were doing the entire time. It’s not about kidnapping. It’s about keeping your job open,” she said.
“It’s so open, it hung us out to dry. These sorts of negotiations with these sorts of people require privacy. The deal’s going to be off now,” said the Waxxer. The article leaked the contents of their video.
The Brazilian shook his head. “Public opinion will force them to comply.”
The Mad Waxxer started to throw up his arms, remembered his glass, and set it down first. “He’s rich. He doesn’t care about the public.”
“Well see about that. Are we done here, or do you want to yell at me more?” asked the Brazilian.
The Mad Waxxer just shook his head. Theodora shooed him off and said, “We can handle Johanssen for now. We wouldn’t want you releasing him to get an exclusive interview.”
The Brazilian rolled his eyes. “That would raise too many questions. Give me some credit here.”
The Waxxer put his arms around Theodora and rested his chin on her head. After the Brazilian left, he asked quietly, “How do you think this is going to go down now?”
“My father’s an asshole,” she answered. “There’s only so much he cares about looking good. I hope that’s not true of whoever else is working with him from among families here. Otherwise, if it’s just him and everyone realizes it? He’ll have nothing to lose.”