SHOT IN THE DARK
The percussion-heavy music made the air pulsate as neon lights lit up the midnight party, skimming across the walls as Mandy and John strolled out of the mansion. They were on high alert now with the crime that was just committed and was walking as calmly as they could, all the while being on guard. To not draw attention to themselves, Mandy chose to walk a couple of feet ahead but kept a leisure pace.
John was so focused on Mandy's back to not lose sight of her that he quickly got tunnel vision. As all sound around him faded into the background of his mind, he heard a voice call his name that was suddenly as clear as day. "John?"
John stopped the moment he heard that and took in a deep breath with a tightened jaw. He looked at Mandy who must've sensed his unease and stopped a couple of feet ahead of him. She was just a ghost in the crowd of a hundred faces though, so no one noticed her as of yet, but that lack of presence could easily be shaken if she were to do something rash.
Turning around slowly, he came face to face with Cassian, Gianna's bodyguard. He stood a couple of feet apart from John and was just staring at him with a heavily perplexed look in his eyes. "Cassian," John greeted politely.
Cassian cocked his head to the side as his confusion quickly turned to suspicion. "You working?"
"Yeah…" he answered back slowly. "Good night?"
"I'm afraid so," John said with a solemn voice.
Cassian's eyes darkened a little when he picked up on what John truly meant. "I'm sorry to hear that."
As the music swelled and reaches its peak, John and Cassian began to inch towards their sidearms. Neither of them was able to pull in time though when two loud gunshots rang out from in the air and pierced Cassian right in his bullet-proof vest. He crumbled to the ground but just in time to see the red ghost herself emerge forth with a smoking gun in hand. Mandy took full advantage of his discombobulated state to grab John by his shoulder and run off into the crowd to try and escape.
"Get them!"Cassian called into his communicator. He was helped off the ground by two other guards before ordering them to go after Wick and Rose. Cassian turned in the opposite direction though and ran into the mansion where Gianna was.
Mandy pushed John ahead of her and ran down a long pathway located in the back of the sound stage. They leaped off the railing and made a break for the stage where they knew would have people upfront. They were hoping that the dense crowd would give them the chance to slip through the cracks of security.
Wick and Rose kept close, dangerously careful not to let one another out of sight while trying to push through the sea of people that stood in their way. Mandy snapped her head from side to side and quickly took notice of two sharp-dressed guards moving in close while simultaneously reaching for their weapons. She gave John two pats on the back to silently let him know that they were being followed before separating from him. She approached one of the sharply dressed men fast and grabbed his gun arm just as he took aim. She pushed it away from her before raising her own pistol and shooting him dead. Mandy didn't let a second slip by though before turning her attention to the second one that was in pursuit. She raised her weapon the moment she got a clear shot and pulled the trigger, dispatching him right through the center of his forehead. He dropped fast after that.
"Mandy!" John called back.
"I'm here. Just go!" Mandy turned around fast to join back up with him just as a wave of armed security came crashing down on them.
The sound of gunfire drowned out the concert music as bodies and blood dropped one after another in a constant onslaught of murder. John's nerves were inflamed as Mandy's fingers ached from squeezing her weapon so tightly. Neither of them lowered their guard though and were in this state of isolating focus, where they could see nothing more but each other and the armed security running at them. They couldn't even hear the music and the panicking crowd anymore.
After thinning the crowd of guards, they eventually made it back to the catacomb gates. They were a little relieved knowing that they were halfway out, but neither John nor Mandy was planning on stopping for long though. They needed at least a couple of seconds to catch their breath and settle their jittering nerves. After all, the concert shootout wouldn't even compare to what they were about to walk into.
John reached over and patted Mandy on the shoulder. "You good?" he asked in a single shallow breath.
Mandy closed her eyes and nodded her head frantically, speaking with short words and deep breaths. "Yep. How about you?
Mandy nodded her head and took the time to reload her pistol while heading inside the tomb. They walked quickly through the tunnels that were as dark as sin and hardly showed any light, aside from the cold blue glow from the bulbs attached to the walls. They used the little light they had as a guide until they were nearly upon the crossroad. Mandy strained her eyes to see past the darkness before suddenly holding her arm up and stopping John. She made a gesture to her head where they saw none other than Ares standing in the middle of the crossroad.
"Loose ends?" John called out to her.
Ares nodded her head and began to sign to them. "Just two…"
Mandy scoffed as a smirk rose to her lips that gave off a very wicked feel. "Sorry, but you're gonna have to write that down. I don't know sign language."
Mandy and John waited a single second until they saw flickering flashlights of Santino's men coming out of hiding, following suit with ear-shattering gunfire echoing off the stone walls. John shoved Mandy behind him in a fraction of a second to block the bullets with his jacket. He pushed her to go ahead while he stayed behind and tried to thin the crowd of followers.
It was hard to tell where the bullets were going since it was so dark. Mandy could feel a couple whiz by her though, striking the walls and hitting the sand near her feet. She quickened her pace after that and was out of sight in moments. John lingered behind and hid behind a corner. He waited, pistol ready, and fired at two armed men who came into view. John didn't even wait for their bodies to drop before turning around and running down the hall, all the while with gunfire ringing in his ears and getting closer.
John ducked quickly behind a pillar just as Mandy emerged from the one opposite of his, brandishing the AR-15 that she had hid in the tunnels. She squeezed the trigger and flashes of light erupted from the barrel, blasting through Santino's men within seconds and killing them easily on the spot. It wasn't all of them, but it did buy them some time.
"Benelli?" John said while coming out of cover.
"Benelli, yeah." Mandy nodded quickly while backing up and keeping her eyes pinned on the tunnels as more flashlights emerged from the darkness. "I'm not looking to kill everyone here. We gotta get out before we run out of ammo." She made a gesture with her head up the tunnel where she left the Benelli at. "Go. I'll cover you."
They were nearing the end of the trail, as Mandy first initially planned out. It was hard to see but as time grew on, her eyes started to adjust to the darkness. It made her accuracy with the AR-15 grow and she was able to see further down the tunnels and spot Santino's men without relying on their flashlights. She stayed calm and steady and kept tabs on where John was the whole time as they headed over to the last checkpoint, the Benelli.
"How much do you have left?" John said while putting on the belt with shotgun shells on it. He picked the Benelli up that was already loaded and ready to go. The only thing he was waiting for was Mandy.
Mandy pressed the release button on the magazine and quickly replaced it with another one. "Just this one, but it should be enough. We thinned the herd enough as it is. If we stay on the path, then we'll make it out in the next couple of minutes."
"You seem pretty motivated now," John pointed out. Her hands weren't even shaking anymore, and the calm look on her face made it look like she had complete control of the situation.
Mandy's lips curled up. "As long as I get to meet Santino again." She made a motion with her head and got out behind cover with her weapon raised. "Come on. Let's get out of here."
I'm sorry that this chapter is so short. It was just the concert and catacomb battle, so I really...had no idea what I was gonna do with the action scenes. I can KINDA do action scenes but you gotta catch me in a good and motivated mood to do it. This chapter though...I kinda had writer's block the whole time and was winging it. Sorry if it was kinda weird. If anything. I just wanted to focus more on Mandy and John's teamwork.