A Clockwork Deckard


deckard_icon.gif drake_icon.gif rico_icon.gif

Scene Title A Clockwork Deckard
Synopsis Things go from bad to worse fast enough to give you whiplash.
Date January 24, 2009

Five Miles off the Coast of New York — The Invierno

A blur of lights, the sloshing sway of the sea.


"…fucking spy on us. Maybe Holden sent him, we should…"


The sound of a foghorn rolling over the water, the uneven sway of a ship on choppy water, army boots at eye level and the acrid smell of sea air.


A sudden jerking motion, the sensation of being dragged, feet hanging limp and a blur of lights seen through halfway lidded eyes. Muffled voices in the indistinct blur of dark skies and rusting metal. Everyone is speaking Spanish.


Feet thumping down metal stairs, being dragged by the arms, pipes overhead passing by, alternating with caged lights buzzing with flying insects. "Fuckin' cut out 'is tongue, if y'ask me." A British accent, the dark silhouette of a broad shouldered man in a black knit cap, he's got a gun.


Sudden, violent motion, weightless for a moment while sailing through the air. The hard and painful sensation of weightlessness ending, crashing down onto metal, the rattle of bars and a sliding door. "Call up t'Mattias, let 'im know we 'ave comp'ny." A hollow click, a latch falling, a door locking.The world spins, blurs.



Unconsciousness, but —

I wanna marry a lighthouse keeper

Everything is sore.

and keep him company

The weak and hollow sound of a small radio echoes with a metallic tinniness.

I wanna marry a lighthouse keeper

It sounds like a song from the sixties, folksie and repetitive. It amplifies the throbbing sensation of a headache.

and live by the side of the sea

Blurred vision begins to come into focus, first the notion of yellowed lights shining from high up in the ceiling. Then, that the dark lines in Deckard's field of vision are bars, not just walls but a ceiling too — a cage. Everything is damp, rusted and glistening. Where rust isn't overwhelming, a pea-green paint is bubbling and peeling away from battleship gray metal. Circular portholes with grimy glass have long and trailing rust stains running down the walls below them.

I'll polish his lamp by the light of day

The floor is made of riveted sheets of metal, patched with dirt, rust and seawater, and Deckard finds himself rousing to consciousness with his right cheek ressed against that lovely mix of oceanic filth. A wooden bench leans up against one barred wall of the cage, and stairs are visible outside of the bars, going up and down in two seperate stairwells.

so ships at night can find their way

There's a radio, a small, gray boombox with a single antenna up at an angle sitting on a metal workbench near the stairs. Seated on a stool, a gruff looking man in a yelow rain-slicker sits with his arms folded, a tangle of black hair hanging down a narrow face with rough stubble and a thick moustache. He's not the Cuban guy from earlier, but he has the same surly disposition.

I wanna marry a lighthouse keeper

Flint Deckard has been in many bad situations over the course of his life; seen a lot of bad prisons, met a lot of bad people. But from the creak of metal all around, like being entombed in some great steel womb, there's a certain uniqueness to being a captive at sea, but in the end…

won't that be ok

Same shit, different pants.

He's not in a hurry to move. The acrid scent of warm, corroded metal hangs heavy in his nostrils. Already he can feel the sink of it into his hide, the cloying stink of dirty seawater and dirtier steel. His right shoulder feels like it's been yanked out of the socket and forced back into place by someone with only a very limited understanding of human anatomy, and he can't feel the arm he's lying on at all. A blurry roll of his eyes down his own length is enough to determine that it's still there.

we'll take walks along the moonlit bay

When he finally moves to push himself up over the lack of sensation buzzing from elbow to wrist, saliva ropes thick from the peel of his jaw away from dirt and rust, but no blood. Not yet. The thought crosses his mind at a remove, pessimism somehow seeing appropriate within the confines of these new digs.

maybe find a treasure or two

His head hurts. Not just at the point of contact, where gun butt met the base of his skull, but everywhere. His neck is stiff, his back kinked. Forty year old muscle and bone has a lot to say on the subject of being forced to loll around on riveted metal for however many hours, and none of it is pleasant.

I love livin' in a lighthouse

His vision doesn't start to swim again until he's scraped and pushed and creaked up into a sit. Rust-stained left hand pushed automatically up over his brow to screen out the bludgeon of lights that seem too bright overhead, he glances reproachfully to the man in yellow, but doesn't say hi. Odds are there will be plenty of time for talking later.

how 'bout you

Plasticy yellow finally begins to move, at least rousing from the stool as Deckard stirs behind the bars. Once Flint's up and sitting, the scraggly looking man slides off of his stool and calls up towards the stairwell, "Ai! Ai! Está acordado! Vindo para baixo aqui está acordado!" It's not Spanish, but it sure as shit is foreign. Whatever Deckard did, it got him in a right fine mood, shotung towards the stairs and moving with thumping footfalls towards them as he calls out.

I dream of livin' in a lighthouse baby

By the time the man in the rain-slicker has walked to the bottom of the steps, there's a hurried crash of bootfalls down the metal stairs, and a broad-shoulders and stockily built man in black BDUs with a dark watchman's cap pulled over blonde hair comes into view. He pushes past the Portugese man, head tilting to one side as blue eyes assess Flint. He doesn't look familiar, but his voice is.

every single day

"So you're 'wake?" The British accent, it's vaguely familiar through the haze of unconsciousness that is slowly fading. Turning back to the man in the rain slicker, the Brit motions up the stairs, "Começ a foda para fora." He points towards the stairwell, and the man in the slicker nods, scowling a little as he makes his way up above deck in no real hurry.

I dream of livin' in a lighthouse

"Sorry 'bout that." The Brit turns his focus back to the bars, then towards the radio, walking over to the table to reach out and flick it off with a quiet regard to the silvery box for a moment.

it's the white o —

"You got y'self in a right fuckin' mess there, friend." Turning back to the cage, he walks with quiet footfalls to one wall, fingers wrapping around the bars as he leans towards one side of the cage. "My name's Drake. Drake Leeds, an' I've got some questions f'ya."

The foreign shouting up the staircase pounds through the front of Deckard's skull such that he makes no effort to discern what language it is. One or two words sound like Spanish. Here…something. Most of what he knows is more colorful and better for shouting into people's faces rather than past them.

With care not to cramp anything worse than its already cramped, he draws his legs up into a bend one after the other. The one that hit the deck under Rico's assault is disinclined to cooperate until he's worked a hand gently over the soreness swollen into the cap. Fuck. Somebody else is coming. Wants to know if he's awake.

Deckard doesn't answer. It'd be nice if he wasn't awake, but his eyes are open and he's gradually shifting his weight over enough to reach for the nearest bar so that he can drag himself up onto his feet. Opposite Drake, he doesn't lift his head. Doesn't look at him. Isn't curious. Once he's standing, he uses the sleeve of his jacket to wipe at the damp crust drying around his mouth, and that's about it. "Great."

At first it seems like it's just going to be chit-chat, with Drake leaning a bit menacingly against the bars. Footsteps on the deck above this cargo hold where the cage is kept, however, indicate there's more activity going on. "Now I'm of the mind that you're best served with a bullet in the brainpan," Drake leans away from the bars, head cocked to the side and eyes viewing Deckard's profile side-long, "But now I'm out 'ere in the fuckin' cold t'get some answers from you, because me buddy thinks you might know some important people."

Something is retrieved from Drake's vest, and thrown into the cage with a slap onto the floor. "James Stutzman?" He narrows his eyes, looking to the wallet, "Me buddy says you got a call on your radio, says ya' Flint Deck'ad. Only Deck'ad I know was a contact of Ethan Holden, a right fuck if ever there was one."

From the stairwell, the man in the rain slicker comes back, carrying a gray plastic case by a fold-out handle, and two more men — each of them looking South American — wearing army fatigues follow behind, one carrying a long and dangling length of rubber cord, the other an aluminum tray with lengths of shiny metal on top of it. "I need t'know who y'workin' for, James. I need t'know 'ow long you've known 'bout us, an' what you were doin' on that tugboat."

Drake removes the walkie-talkie from where it is clipped to his belt, holding it up to the bars. Behind him, the man in the rain slicker sets down the case on the table, momentarially glaring at the silenced radio before laying the case down and flipping it open, rummaging around with whatever's inside. "I need t'know who's on the other end'a this radio."

It's never just chitchat with these people. It's always boots to the groin and fists to the face and wires. No illusion of plans for peaceable discourse is held in the seconds it takes for Rain Slicker and his friends to join Mr. Leeds. Maybe unfortunately for his imagination, his apathy does not extend to the case, cord, and tray they bring with them.

Weight sagged against the bars he has both hands wrapped around, he glances to the light overhead, then back down again. White glows to black, gleaming metal to white to better examine the contents of case and tray. The metal layered all around is chaos organized. Geometry in every direction. Skeletons moving dimly somewhere, barely visible at all under his half-hearted scrutiny. Not something to bother worrying about now.

Normal vision restored in a swap rendered invisible by sufficient lighting, he tips the scruff of his jaw down after the wallet on a reluctant delay and tries to keep a held breath from shuddering out. He does not. Quite. Succeed.

"Can we…talk about this later?"

"I was 'fraid you'd say tha'." Drake leans away from the cage, circling around the corner towards the locked door. From that quick x-ray viewing of the tray, the severity of the situation only seems to have grown. There's foreceps, gauze, medical tape, and syringes laid out. In the case, an arrangement of glass bottles with metal caps, the kind you refill a syringe with. It's enough to go on that quickly spells out how it is never just chitchat, just like he imagined.

Drake fumbles with a set of keys, unlocking the door, even as one of the Portugese men removes a knot from the rubber hose and moves towards the cell door. drake just steps out of the way, "That's a right fuckin' shame." The man in the rain slicker picks up one of the syringes, sticking it into th top of a bottle, withdrawing some clear fluid, then repeats the process with another syringe, handing both off to the man beside him.

"See, my frien' 'ere, e's someone that knows a little 'bout chemical interrogation." The man with the rubber hose steps into the cage, followed shortly after by Drake. "They're gonna' hold you down, an' you're gonna' get stuck with those needles. One's a barbituate — if you don' know what that is, s'fine." Drake tilts his head to the side, motioning as the man with the hose stands a few feet away, "The other's an amphetamine. One, then anotha'. It ain't a pretty mix, does stuff to th' 'eart."

Scratching the side of his face, Drake watches as the man with the syringes steps into the cage, followed by the man in the rain slicker, "You bes' hold still."

If Deckard's long face could get any longer, it likely would. Circumstances being what they are, it might just manage it in tandem with the reach Drake makes for his keys. Jaw and mouth having adopted a flat set, eyes hard under the hood of his brows, he tenses. It might be a familiar sort of look for anyone who's had to try to drag a wild animal out of a crate and into the antiseptic environment of a friendly vet's office. Only in this case, it's the rust-rotted belly of a nightmare ship, and instead of a vet, there are crazy people.

He does not hold still.

He backs up. It just kind of sucks, see, because he's in a big metal cage, and the only ways to go are backwards into more bars or forward into a bunch of unpleasant-looking people with needles. The closer they get, the more he bristles, with the merest touch enough to set off an all-out nose-breaking, arm-biting struggle. It probably doesn't last for more than a few seconds with the odds stacked thusly and a concussion keeping him firmly off balance, but maybe it's the effort that counts.

Struck in the face by a wild elbow during Deckard's panicked frenzy, the man holding the rubber hose goes down to the floor clutching his nose, a ealthy stream of bright red spilling down his chin a good indication that his nose is going to look a little more crooked in the morning. By this time, Drake has lost his patience, making his way into the cage, grabbing Deckard by the arms and wrestling with him to force the older man down onto the wooden bench. A complience-inducing headbutt sends Deckard sprawling down long enough for his arms to be yanked out to either side, like some sort of sea-salt and rust crucufixion is about to take place.

The scraggly man in the rain slicker snags one of the needles, yanking up Deckard's sleeve as the man wrestles and struggles with Drake, and as he brings down theneedle towards bruised flesh, a voice rings out through the hollow hold of the ship, "What the fuck is going on!?"

Drake snorts, loudly, shoving his hands against Deckard's shoulders before quickly standing up and moving towards the cage door, "Fuck off, Rico!" There on the other side of the bars, is the wiry Cuban man who clubbed Deckard in the back of the head. "I'm doin' this my way, we ain't going t'let some fuckin' spy sit on this bloody boat!"

"No, fuck you senior, this is my fucking ship." All five-foot-six-inches of South American intensity comes walking up to Drake, staring up at the taller and wider Brit, all the while sucking in a slow breath of smoke and ash from his cigar. "Fuck you." He repeats with extra enunciation, just to make his point clear. "Get the fuck out of that cage and let him go, we aren't fucking animals."

Drake's gloved hands flex open and closed, he looks back over his shoulder, even as the man in the yellow rain slicker with the needle seems to pause, staring over at Rico with wide eyes before withdrawing, along with his assistant who crouches down to pick up the one with the bloodied nose.

"Fine, you fuckin' 'andle it when Kazimir gets back 'ere." Drake spits his words out, moving past Rico with a slam of his shoulder into the Cuban's. He jerks back, but doesn't protest, only exhaling a cloud of smoke from his mouth as he watches the other men walk out, packing up their supplies and leaving the cage door open.

" — fucking hate you fucking people fucking — fucking hate all of you cock-sucking fucking fucks." Voice worn ragged through the clench of his teeth once he's pinned down and reeling in place under Drake, Deckard rolls the whites of his eyes to the Brit. His capacity to struggle limited along with his creativity while his skull rings hollow and he can't hear himself cursing, he breathes hard, every breath sour-tongued, whiskey-tainted poison in the face of his captor. He could really stand to brush his teeth. Really.

At the addition of another familiar voice to the equation, he goes dead still. Trying to hear enough to listen, think enough to discern meaning through the accent and the nauseating fog that's bound thick around his rattled brain. Cold sweat damping rust and dirt across his brow, he tries to twist his head over enough to get a good look at the Cuban. Then he's free. Free from Drake, at least. For the short term.

Forgive him if he doesn't breathe a sigh of relief just yet. Panic still blanched into the hard angles of his face and around the shadows purpled around his eyes, he doesn't scramble to right himself until Drake is all the way out of his box.

Rico stays quiet, up until Drake makes his way out of the cargo hold, fitfully muttering curses under hi breath the whole way up the steps. The Cuban reaches up to scratch at his beard, walking towards the cage door. "Fuckin' Brits, right?" As if this were some social call, Rico keeps his tone casual, reaching for the cage door to close it, clicking the lock back in place before reaching into his jacket, withdrawing a rolled cigarette, offering it out through the bars with one hand.

"Joint?" Brows raise, fingers rolling the twisted length between them. His other hand goes for the lighter, "This is my fucking ship, and that fucking Brit can go to hell if he thinks I'm going to let him run the show." Dark eyes sweep up and down Deckard, "You're lucky, Flint. If your friends weren't so stupid, I was going to put a bullet in you once we got to the boat." Comforting.

Inelegantly, Deckard's initial answer takes the form of a sideways stumble against the bars. His left hand vices around the first it can to keep him upright, and he just sort of hangs there for a moment with his eyes closed. Deckard the neurotic sloth. It would really be super if people could stop hitting him in the head.

It doesn't actually hurt. Not half as much as everything else, anyway — just. It's hard to focus. Hard to focus when your brain has developed an attraction for the interior of your skull such that it keeps bashing itself feverishly against it.

"No thanks." The reply is uttered about the time it seems like he might've gone to sleep standing up, sweat staining grey t-shirt dark around his collar in the wake of a struggle that all in all must have lasted less than a minute. For all the time he spent lying around on the floor, it doesn't feel like he actually slept.

He doesn't open his eyes. "They aren't my friends. Just stupid."

"Hope you don't mind if I smoke then." Rico says in a calm, slow voice, withdrawing the hand to slip the cigarette between his lips, flicking the lighter flame up, and giving an affirmative nod of his head as he draws in a slow and long breath, before exhaling a wheezing cloud of smoke. "If they think they can stop him, yeah." Pocketing the lighter, Rico takes a few steps away from the bars, rolling one shoulder as he looks to the side, towards the table where the case of chemicals have been left open.

"You want to talk, tell me what it is those stupid people have you doing?" He puffs a few long drags off of the joint, coughing once before switching it to the side of his mouth with a flick of his tongue. "Maybe which one of them blew your cover?" He looks side-long to Flint, watching him for a quiet moment before turning towards the stairs. "I'll let you sit and think about it for a little while. I'll be back, an' hopefully… You gimme' a reason to be glad I didn't shoot you, Mister Flint."

"It's your ship." Deckard doesn't mind. One eye cracks open into a drowsy squint there, followed reluctantly by the other. He makes a dragging effort to stand himself up a little straighter against the bars, one hand touching gingerly after the side of his head in search of a fresh tender spot to poke at under the sweaty bramble of his hair.

Does he want to talk? The lack of an answer there would insinuate a strong no if not for the fact that there's a ghost of a rankle at the join of brow and bridge where mention of the cover-blower is made. His fingers come away from his temple bloodless, the source of a few second's brief distraction from his own ill-temper, and when he looks up again, Rico is heading for the stairs. "Hasta luego, Captain."

Rico is wordless as he ascends the stairs to the upper deck, the only accompaniment is the clank of his boots hitting the metal stairs, and the groaning strain of the ship's hull. He pauses halfway up the steps, shoulders slouching before the captain breathes out a heavy sigh. It seems like he might say something, anything, words just about on his lips, but there's some stubbornness there that keeps it from happening. And with every further clanking footfall, Rico makes his way out of sight, leaving Deckard with the creaks and pops of the Invierno as company.

Some plan, Edward.

Some plan.


January 24th: Vespertine
January 24th: Another Member
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