Sweat Shop

Brief Title:
Closing up Shop

Bride of Nine Spiders, Night Raven, Yishi

Scene Runner/Watcher:

IC Date:
08/14/12 07:00

Chinatown - undisclosed illegal warehouse factory

Bride of Nine Spiders and Night Raven stop a slave operation in their own fashion

Social or Plot:


Dawn pierces the eastern horizon, beyond Long Island the Atlantic is swathed in sunlight. Here in the heart of NYC, the buildings of Chinatown swaddle the streets belowin darkness still. Yet on the rooftops, that vertical band of light fortelling the rising sun has spread its wings over the city. Warmth seems to try to chase the cold of night away now but, the battle continues on the streets below. Here in that warmth, Night Raven has found himself a perch. Silent near where darkness mingles on a rooftop ledge and the light spreading over the tar and gravel behind him. Alone save for a few morning birds that have sung their song and are preparing to head out for food gathering. His eyes pearing through his ivory mask at the street below. He turns to the side, "I'll give you that, it might not be 23, that could be 27 assuming there is a enough wear at the top of the sign. Still, Yi is subtle enough to have calculated for a good 10 years of weather stripping and the trail leading me here now." He turns to look in the shadow right next to the ledge, where rests a dead sparrow - victim to one of the city's predatory birds used for pigeon control. There is a nod to the bird from Night Raven, as if he is listening to a response.

Has Night Raven noticed the spiders? They've been trailing him for an hour now. Dozens of them following him across the rooftops and through the alleyways. Small and stealthy, the little arachnids have been keeping several curious eyes on the strange man. Now, their mother comes to call. She does not appear from thin air but, rather, leaps up from the ground below. Acrobatically, she makes her way from window ledge to fire escape, from fire escape to rooftop. She lands, crouched, on the roof's edge and watches the Night Raven with those dark black eyes

Any spiders were either ingored or unnoticed by Night Raven. Rather he's spent the better part of the last hour interpreting various signs on the street below as having something to do with Yi Yang. The last 5-10 minutes in surveilance and engaged conversation with the dead, which hasn't really responded to him. Though in his world, that is completely different. Still, this doesn't make him completely unobservant to the world, not when a porcelain acrobat lands in a crouch on the ledge to regard the crouched man as he observes the street. His eyes are quite noticeable even within the mask as he looks over the woman to decide mentally if she is friend or foe even. There are calculations in that mind of his as he takes in all of her, from spiders to white skin to spiked collar and even bare feet.
Reaching some sort of conclusion he ponders quietly, as if they are conspiring and ears close by cold hear them, "Are you a messanger of the Raven, come to offer guidance?"

"Je je je je je." The pale woman snickers. Apparently, that amused her. "I am Bride of Nine Spiders." She rises to a full, standing position. "You hunt the woman with half a face." She notes. "The woman who spits poison into this city." She cartwheels her way over to the other edge of the roof, coming to a halt near Night Raven. Bride of Nine Spiders peers down into the alleyway. "Her flies swarm in that building."

Perhaps he smiles under the mask, but Night Raven gives full attention to the woman as she talks all the same. Again his eyes move back and forth just a little as he interprets her words for himself. "Then Bride of Nine Spiders, perhaps it is time the Raven feeds, and today I shall walk with the dead." He looks down the alley where whe indicates, not quite the building he was studying but close enough. "Perhaps Nine Spiders and the Raven have made cause, the flies are soon to find they are trapped in a web?" Even as he ponders this, he is reaching for his two revolvers, loading old 6-shot clips into them. He adds another question, "Do you know how many flies?" He pats himself pondering if he has enough ammunition now.

A spider crawls up Bride's shoulder. Along her neck and then it wiggles inside her ear. Into the ear canal. Bride tilts her head, as if listening. "My children tell me there are ten flies armed with fire spitting steel" She pauses, then mmms. "And many women. The women are... sewing with loud machines. The flies force the women to do so." She nods, as if understanding. "Slavery. Chinese women brought to this world and made chattel."

"Another mark against Yang," says Night Raven as he continues to look at the building. "Do the women have some place to go once they are free?" Its a curteousy saying he means to contribute to their freedom but doesn't know if they have some place to turn for assistance other than the government which could deport them. Perhaps someone who could even help them gain freedom and even citizenship, his only worry are the ten armed flies. "The men shouldn't be a problem but it won't due if the next menace picks the women up for his own factory." Weapons loaded, he reaches to his belt to withdraw a grappling gun with a line, he's going to use it to zip into the building most likely, but waits to here what Bride of Nine Spiders might say and to see if she's hunting with him.

"I know a woman who might help them. I will summon her after we have freed the women." Bride of Nine Spiders glances over at the grappling gun. Her eyes flicker to it, then the building that hides the hunted. "What sort of raven cannot fly?" She wonders, then hisses her laugh. "Je je je je je!" Then Bride of Nine Spiders leaps into the air. Midway between this building and the next. When her hands touch the lip of the building's roof she springboards up and then.. down she goes through the skylight. A classic entrance.

There is a pause, then a chuckle from Night Raven, "Sadly, I'm just the messenger, it is the Raven who will feed upon their spirits. I am the Night Raven that stings ... borrowed, I know, J. Milton." As if that explains it all. As she begins to leap and vault, he fires his grapping gun near above one of the side windows and then zips down the line to swing in from the side, not far behind her, perhaps they will hit the floor near the same time, unless she does something amazing and stays in the gridwork of the ceiling of the old building. Nevertheless, his guns will be ready and before he starts firing he calls on, "Need one alive!" He doesn't know her mode of operation, but he means to kill most of the thugs off, better for the streets - he isn't fully bought into the revolving door of justice just yet. So, pulling his guns, he looks for any guard, thug, or otherwise that isn't a women forced into labor here, so that he can open fire on them.

Ten men. All armed with pistols. All accomplished street fighters. They don't stand a chance. Bride of Nine Spiders does, indeed, land in the ceiling's gridwork. Glass shimmers on the floor but the Bride does not. As enslaved women shriek and scream the men raise the guns to open fire. Nine of them do, anyway. The tenth? He vanishes, as thousands of spiders rain down from the sky upon him. As they crawl across his body weaving their webs. As he is wrapped in a coccoon of spider silk and yanked upwards. Gone in the shadows of the building. Food for the spiders.

Using the machines, Night Raven gets into a crouch walk, avoiding machines with women chained to them as best he can - so fire isn't drawn towards the innocent. His weapons report through the building, ears will ring if they aren't used to this cacophany. His flashpoint enough to draw some fire to himself. When he hits a guard, the guard goes down. The observent might note that the guards aren't bad aim and Night Raven isn't trying to dodge. Bullets will rip into his black jacket and t-shirt, and even exit. But aside from a slight recoil from the force of the bullet, this doesn't deter him by any means, it only drives him on to finish the guards.

Two more guards drop due to Night Raven's well placed bullets. Seven left. All focused on Night Raven, trying to put as many holes in the masked nightmare as possible. That is, until another nightmare drops down from the ceiling. Bride of Nine Spiders lands behind one of the gun wielding thugs. He begins turning but not before her fingers jab into his throat, twist, and pull. He collapses, blood pouring from the wound. Another guard, nearby, beings screaming. He drops his gun and starts clawing at his own eyes, as if trying to scratch them out.

While he can't deny there is a coolness factor in the way Bride of Nine Spiders plots her moves, Night Raven is stuck to the regular means of dealing, moving swiftly between machines to close the gap on the remaining five guards while still plucking off shots and still trying to keep fire on himself as best he can. One guard he will intend to kill, but his second one, he'll go for a leg shot to drop the man and mark him as the alive one to keep. "Flies indeed, they come right to the light, do the not?" He chuckles a little, but its most likely lost in the gunfire ringing inside the sweat shop.

“Je je je je je je!" Bride of Nine Spiders laughs as she ducks and dodges, weaving underneath one bullet and around another. She twists around the gunman and shove her fingers upwards, hooking beneath his rip cage and pulling. The man screams as the ribcage cracks apart under the strain. Meanwhile, the poor guy clawing at his eyes begins actually ripping them from the socket. Its... not pretty. That leaves two more guards, plus the one guy Raven kneecapped.

With two left, Night Raven stands erect and uses his final few shots. One bullet for one of the two guards who can still return fire, the other he turns to aim at the main ripping his eyes out. He ends his misery with a bullet into a gored socket. Not that the man didn't deserve it, but with a room full of women chattel that they want to free, perhaps he feels it best to spare them this madness. Still, he leaves the last guard to whatever spiders still wish to feed as he pulls out his branding stick to move in on the kneecapped guard. "Information," he demands, "Or you join your friends in horror." He doesn't know yet if the man only speaks one language just yet, but speaks the only language he himself is familiar with.

Bride of Nine Spiders glances around the room. Her fingers are dripping with blood but, oddly enough, the rest of her remains uncovered. Spiders crawl from everywhere in the warehouse and converge on her body. The crawl up her legs and wiggle beneath her clothing and then vanish from sight. By now, the slave women are shrieking and cowering, many under the tables. Bride glances over but doesn't try to comfort them. Instead, she watches as the Night Raven interrogates the only surviving guard. He babbles out answers, trying to give any information that might be worth his life. He knows very little, it turns out. Just local muscle hired by a Chinatown businessman to guard this sweatshop. But, at least, he knows the name of the businessman. Weng Ho

Weng Ho is enough of a lead for Night Raven. Still, the stick goes to the man's forehead, leaving Night Raven's chosen emblem there. Not unlike a tattoo but without the pain, a permanent marker - most likely chemical in origin. His babbling will continue but not because he's trying to save his life, more because madness is enclosing on him. "This was a fortuitous union Bride of Nine Spiders," he says nonchalantly as he leaves the man to his visions. He pats a few guards until he finds keys to set about freeing the women. "Has Yi Yang, the woman with half a face, wronged you as well?" It is a simple curiousity.

"I am from.... near China." Bride of Nine Spiders explains as she unclips a cellphone from the belt of a dead guard. "I find this part of the City of New York to be comforting. The woman with half a face has made the life of many here miserable." She leaves it at that, as if those words explain everything.

"She taints every city she visits, I never dreamt she would return to New York," he explains, giving the key to one of the freed women, and pointing to suggest the work be continued. "Then again, it has been enough decades that the city has forgotten her from before." A simply enough explanation, he takes everything that is offered to him at face value just the same. As she makes to call her person to help the ladies here, he chortles lightly, "If she is but the woman with half a face, perhaps that makes me the man wihout a face."

"Ravens have faces" Bride of Nine Spiders notes. "Mocking ones." Then she begins dialing numbers into the phone. It takes her several tries to figure out the right combination of buttons but she reaches her intended target. She speaks in Chinese. Cantonese, to be specific.

If one could see through his mask, the would note his eyebrows raise up at the comment from Bride of Nine Spiders. Nonetheless, Night Raven remains quiet while she talks, turning over the mocking face comment in his mind. At one point he goes near a dead guard, "You might be right, but not the time." He leaves it at that, and instead stands idle for the moment while the conversation is continued. When she hangs up the phone, he prodes, "Maybe if I smiled." As if that is the answer to some riddle.

"Not everyone was meant to smile. The detective is nearby. She will be here soon." Bride of Nine Spiders raises her voice and speaks in Mandarin to the women present, then repeats her words in Cantonese. The women stare for a moment, before one takes charge and begins organizing the ten of them. She draws the other nine women away from the carnage and towards the corner of the room.
The scene is the aftermath of chaos. This is a small building near the outskirts of Chinatown. One story but a tall one. The skylight and one window have been punched through. Ten or so women are in the corner, quietly talking to themselves and trying hard not to look at the carnage. Sewing machines have been set up, of course, but the whole of the area is bathed in blood. Nine men are dead. Some by bullets, some by skilled hands. One hangs in the rafters, in a coccoon, feasted on by spiders. Only one man remains alive, though he is babbling in madness. A chemical mark burned into his forehead. The mark of the Night Raven.

Creepy phone call, check. Creepy voice, check. Creepy part of town, check. So, when faced with the trifecta of creep, Xiu Lin Tseng does not simply appear, recklessly, when and where bidden. She checks things out. Whether or not those inside would notice, a tiny, lithe figure cloaked in black body armor creeps around the building, checking things out. Only once she is assured there are no forces outside lying in wait in ambush does the heroine known as Yishi creep closer, getting a good look at the interior through several openings. It is enough to show her that the Bride is here, and so it appears is someone else. And others in need of help.
Minutes later, Xiu Lin Tseng raps on the door, one of her telescoping battle batons in hand, the other on her belt. She has removed hr helmet, tucked it away in her bag, but has her communicator in her ear just in case. She wears a cold grey cheongsam-collared tunic and dang lung foo drawstring pants, each with black trim. Leather slippers cover her feat. She waits to see if the door will be answered, or if she'll have to pull the door open herself.

As if puzzling the idea of not smiling, its as if the riddle within him simply plays itself out and Night Raven gives to mental pause while the eternal question of finding happiness reminds him again that he will never really find it. Almost like a statue in that silence up until the door raps that is and, coming to he moves over to grab the knob and twist, pushing it open. "Your friend I presume," even still, he opens the door. Then he looks to see the stealthy figure standing there expectantly and pauses again, measuring up the situation. Is this the helper, or someone of the Dragon Tong come to see what happened at this operation.

"Detective." Bride of Nine Spiders greets Xiu Lin Tseng. "These women were held in bondage." She gestures to the women, still in the corner. Dressed in rags and obviously frightened and exhausted. "We have freed them. You will know how best to help them."

The diminutive figure glances up at Night Raven, arching an eyebrow, and then slips inside. Once she sees it is 'safe', she snaps her wrist and the telescoping baton closes up in her hand. Then she tucks it in at her waist with its mate. "Alright. Fair enough. You care to tell me what happened here? I grant these guys were jackasses, and enslaving these women. But what'd they do to earn getting dead so horrifically?" Xiu Lin inquires, as she walks softly across the floor, avoiding patches of evidence as best she can, to reach the women. She crouches down, nodding to them. "< Sorry. I know this has been very upsetting. I promise, they have no intention of hurting you. I'm going to call the authorities. Then I'll call a shelter. They'll take you in, give you a safe place to stay, food, clothing, a chance to clean up. And they'll bring in immigration lawyers to help you get asylum to stay in the country. Are any of you injured? >"

The bluntness of asking what they did wrong catches Night Raven before he can say anything else just the same. As she slipped past and said this, his eyes widened a little. Regaining composure, he'll respond with an actual answer, "They returned fire." Its simple enough he imagines, they fired with intent to kill, the intention to kill was met in kind. Still not giving who actually fired first, that is but a detail. He walks casually towards Yishi, but gives space enough for her to talk with the women without being a monster so they can answer her in kind. His head tilts silently, as if curious what take the Bride of Nine Spiders might have on why these men deserved it - wondering if her take is different than his and interested to find out.

Bride of Nine Spiders listens to the words spun by Xiu Lin. She listens to Night Raven's answers. For her answer, she points to another corner of the room where mattresses have been piled and a folding screen has been set up. The little corner's purpose should be obvious. Whenever women are devalued as people, rape is never far behind.
One of the women seems to be in charge of the little group. She listens to Xiu Lin, then replies in hesitant words, "<Some of us are hurt or sick. You are sure we won't be deported?>"

Xiu Lin saw the spot, but she hadn't been sure Bride would be the sort to understand what such a thing was. Apparently so. She crouches corrected, anyway. To the 'leader' of the women, Xiu Lin offers unvarnished truth. "< I am sure you will not be deported until you have been treated and are healthy, and you will get your day in court. I cannot control a Federal judge, but I can assure you that the people I will contact have a history of doing well in immigration court with issues exactly like this. >" Go figure that Xiu Lin would know groups that specializing in coming to the aid of exploited women and children. "< I am Tseng Xiu Lin. If any of you need help - including translation - call. Tell anyone who wants to speak with you to call me. >" The small young woman pulls out a handful of her cards and starts distributing them around the women.
Only once they are ready does she finally make the call. She doesn't call dispatch, but instead calls a particular detective she knows, and gets this routed properly.

Assuming all is being put in order, Night Raven not understanding the ongoing conversations, decides its about time once a call is being placed by Yishi. So, he'll turn at first girl with the face made to look almost porcelain like. "Bride of Nine Spiders, I cannot assure enough how valuable your timing was, as well as your insight." He is not put back by spiders, in metaphor or the kind that are crawling over her body. "I would be in your debt if we could talk more about the influence of Yi Yang." From his jacket, he has cards too. Nothing fancy, probably bent from being in his pocket so long, he pulls it from out of the inner pocket over his breast. It has his symbol, his motto, and an unlisted cell phone number. Then he turns to Yishi, "My apologies for brining you such a mess as this, but I must beg your forgiveness as well, I cannot remain here if authorities are on their way."

Bride of Nine Spiders accepts the card. She examines it, then slides it into one of the little pouches she has ninja secreted about her person. "The men wearing blue do not like spiders." The Bride explains, "My children and I shall leave, too." She points to a security camera in the upper left corner. "I am told Big Brother watches through those eyes. Perhaps Big Brother can tell the men wearing blue what happened, so you will not be shoved into jail." She smiles. "Je je je je je je."
"Gee. Thanks." Xiu Lin offers wryly to Bride. The creepy woman's sense of humor is always such an acquired taste. "< Thank you for calling me to allow me to help these women. And, of course, for helping them yourself. >" she offers to the Bride. She then nods to Night Raven. "I rather assumed you two wouldn't be staying. The detective coming knows me, knows I won't have done this." No guns, Xiu Lin. No spiders, either. See? Problem solved. "Bye." That said, she crouches down and stays with the other women, awaiting the ambulance services and police.

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