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The Formulary at the End of the Street Started by: Ilse on Mar 19, '17 03:53

Ilse sat behind the desk that Kathryn had given her on the day she made her first million.  The wood was a rich burgundy with whorls of scarlet and was heavily lacquered.  The blotter she had was also a gift, leather and crisp white sheets protecting the slick surface of the desk.  The fountain pen was a present to herself, she had splurged a little and gotten a pen and pencil set, gilt and adorned with a sparkling diamonds at the top.  The chair was a King Louis VX and up until ten minutes previous it had been refurbished with embroidered silk cushions.  The phone that had been set to the right was now on the floor.  The chandelier was now 2 arms short, glass and crystal all over the floor.  

Ilse knew she was bleeding, but she felt strongly that she should be able to pick up the phone and call Kathryn, and be able adequately speak in English rather than German.  Ilse put her gun down and straightened her back.  Then she reached into her open top drawer and pulled out a carved  ivory hairbrush and a silver backed mirror.  She took care with her long blonde hair, carefully detangling it and pushing it back into soft waves.  She also fixed her lipstick, a racy red that she'd been given by an associate.  Her crystal blue eyes looked tired, but she wasn't going to call Kathryn over while looking sloppy.  She touched a freckle on her nose and frowned, there was nothing she could do about that.  

She got up and picked up the phone, dialing the operator and eventually getting connected to her boss

"Kathryn. It's Ilse.  There's been a problem at the formulary."  

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Kathryn picked up the phone at her office, immediately focusing.

"What sort of problem?"

She motioned to Jack, her bodyguard, to go out and bring the car around front.

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Ilse wanting to keep the call brief in case of a nosy operator.  She tried to speak in code. 

"Three customers weren't happy about how their bouquets were delivered.  They came to talk to me about it but they were a bit to upset to hear reason. Please come soon if you can." 

She hung up the phone and gritted her teeth.  "How did they even find out I was here?" 

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Kathryn had practically run to the car. Ilse hadn't mentioned needed a dozen guns for backup or anything, so she figured it was safe- but there was something in Ilse's voice that had made Kathryn concerned. Jack insisted on being first through the door of the formulary. He and Kathryn both had their guns out as they found Ilse, sitting behind her desk.

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Ilse stood up and went to greet Kathryn and Jack, nimbly stepping over the three dead men on her one fabulous Asian rug.  She held out her hand for a greeting and noticed how awful her hand looked.  Both Kathryn and Jack were looking at her askance and she didn't know why until she looked to the mirror on her right.  Her face and hair were streaked with blood, she assumed from the dead men.  

"I'm sorry I am such a mess.  I have no idea how they found my office, but I know WHY they came.  They're upset because my Heroin in pure in every way and people are beginning to invest in what you're selling rather than the other guys.  They were heavily armed but then again, so was I.  Your suggestion to take up the art of self defense certainly helped me, and so did my gun."  She frowned.  I just feel violated that anyone besides another crew member would know how to get here."  She frowned again and then stumbled forward letting out a mewling cry of pain.  She grit her teeth and looked up at her boss.  

"I also think I have been shot." 

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Kathryn stared for a moment, tilted her head, then spoke briskly.

"Jack. Get Grace on the phone. Tell her to pack her bag for a gunshot wound and meet me at my office."

Kathryn made her way over to Ilse

"Where were you hit?"

Kathryn looped one of the other woman's arms over her shoulder for support and started guiding her to the car. 

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Jack had been brief on the phone, but then again he always was. It was one of the things she rather liked about the man, straight to the point and no beating around the bush. Someone was shot, this is where they are, come fix them. Brilliant. She packed her back thinking back to the last time Jack called her about a gunshot wound and making note to remind Kat that she was due for an appointment to check things out, even if she didn't want to. She was going to have that appointment. 

She wasn't too far away from where Jack said they were, so instead of getting in a cab and having to deal with the traffic she just walked the few blocks. Slightly winded from her walk she wondered if perhaps she should lay off the garlic bread. With a bitter laugh and a shake of her head she realized how silly that would be. Garlic bread was everything. 

She entered the building and called out, "Kathryn, I'm here." as she made her way in the building, waiting for someone to call out so their voice could lead her to them. 

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It had been a much longer ride than Ilse had anticipated, but she thought that perhaps the wound was extending her senses of everything, including pain.  Kathryn had helped her to the car and Ilse thought that perhaps she'd been in shock because although she had been incapacitated and aware of the gunshot, there was nothing like the burning, radiating agony she was experiencing now.  

Jack helped Kathryn get Ilse out of the car and she gritted her teeth, trying not to look weak in front of her boss.  Unfortunately her body betrayed her and she began praying, then swearing in German.  She'd only met Grace once, a routine physical several months before this incident and she knew that if Kathryn trusted her, it would be wise to do the same.  

Ilse made it to the thresh hold before her legs gave out and Jack had to fireman carry her inside.  The searing, fiery pain now made it hard to for Ilse to breathe and she looked up at Jack and whispered in German. 

"Please don't let me die like this." 

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When Gracie had arrived, Kathryn quickly brought her over to Ilsewho wasn't looking good. After a few minor stabilizing procedures, Gracie said something about getting her back to her office, where there'd be more she could do to help. Kathryn rode shotgun, keeping an eye out for trouble while Jack drove. She still her gun out, and she tapped it nervously against the car door as they drove for what felt like a long time, but was really just a few blocks. 

Ilse kept slipping in and out of consciousness, and by the time Jack had lifted her up and carried her inside, Kathryn was wearing a permanent concerned frown. She crossed her arms as Jack placed her down on the table. 

"Time to do your thing, Gracie. Just tell Jack and I what we can do to help."

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Grace eyed the wound and sighed, "Can we please stop getting shot?" she asked before grabbing her scaple and tweezers and getting to work. It took a while, the wound was deep. But thankfully it hadn't hit anything to major. She pulled it out with an, "Ah ha!" and smiled when the mental dropped into the bowl with a plink. She sewed the wound closed and washed the area around it. "Honestly, the amount of times I have to deal with bullet wounds.." she muttered, "I'd love to have something different and interesting, like an ear infection or a good case of gout." she told Ilse's unconsious body while she finished up. Once she was done she washed her hands and went to Kathryn "Well, I've done what I can. She should be fine, but she's going to have to be careful." she told her. 

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 Ilse vaguely remembered Jack carrying her and not much else.  When she finally woke up she was back in Kathryn's car and she could hear low murmuring in the dark.  She tried to sit up and cried out in pain.  She obviously had been helped while she was passed out.  With a small hiss she laid back down. 

"Kathryn?  Am I ok?  Please forgive me for causing so much trouble." 

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Kathryn leaned forward on her chair.

"Please don't apologize, Ilse. Grace took care of you. Jack's taking care of... the evidence. I'm going to take care of you. Why don't you start by telling me what happened? And take your time. You're going to be in bed for a while."

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"You know how I set up the formulary ja?  People come to the store for sodas or candy, I sell a few news papers, some shave lotion, things like that.  And of course, I run a totally legitimate pharmacy where people come to get cough syrups, pain pills and a little gossip.  I supervise the man who runs the front of the business and only you and Jack have been to the "back" back.  I must have been careless and left a door ajar, for there is no way to open the vault door without the code, which currently only you and I possess. 

I think it's Scalini and company.  I've seen his thugs buy cigarettes and matches while they snoop around the shop.  I even caught one of them trying to get behind the pharmacy counter.  I didn't pull a gun on them then, I dismissed it as a little mayhem, nothing else, but now I have three dead bodies down in a bank vault and over 50 kilos of heroin to sell.  How will I break the news to the corrupt cop I bribe?  It seems like this is beyond his paygrade.

Anyhow, these Scalini thugs literally kick open the door to my office, guns out, bandanas over their faces like it's some old west novel.  They demand I give them half of the order I just made.  So at least word's out that our product is the best.  I tell them that it's locked in the subvault for delivery day and that even I do not have a code to that door.  They threaten me, I pull out my gun and shoot all three of them.  One of them died slowly, so I had time to apply pressure to the would and to ask a few questions.  One of his lungs was punctured I think, which is how I got so much blood on my face.  He let me know, under extreme duress mind you, that Scalini wants me alive of all things, and that he'll pay me in gold.

I let the poor man die and then called you.  I didn't even know I'd been shot until the adrenaline wore off." 

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Kathryn listened carefully.

"I'm not surprised that he wanted you alive, Ilse. With your skills, you're an asset to any organization. Any idea about where he's based out of at the moment? How many guys he has? I'm going to handle this for you- and then we're going to set you up in a new spot- with more backup. I didn't think anyone would be that stupid to come after you... but I guess I was wrong."

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Kathryn fussed a little, the idea that the vault she had set up would never be matched in safety again, but she also knew that know Don Scalini's idiot thugs knew where she was required a cover up and a move.  

"It was for sure Scalini's idea for the attack.  To be honest, I think they hadn't been told anyone would be there in the vault.  Don Scalini's men might be idiots, but he's no slacker. He sent three men in, but I think they had men stationed outside in case of mayhem.  Luckily or unluckily for them, they obviously didn't hear the gunshots."  She sat up then winced.  "Ow."  

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Kathryn nodded slowly, already thinking. 

"Alright. Well, he may call himself a Don- but he's delusional if he thinks he has enough strength to pull this off. I'd like to go handle this right now, if I can, since I'd prefer not to let it wait. You could wait in the car, come in when... well, when the "Don" is ready to apologize?"

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Ilse took her hand away from where'd she'd been shot and saw that her dress had stuck nicely to the wound.  

"I'd like to come with you if I can, Scalini's men have been trying to shake down stores in your neighborhoods.  Terrorizing everyone up and down this block, which coincidentally has made me lose business, and if I lose business, so do you." 

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Kathryn looked a bit concerned as she scanned the wound.

"Well... Grace is going to be pissed. But it wouldn't be the first time. You wait in the car, though, until everything is settled. Deal?"

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Ilse waved her hand as if she were waving away the good doctor's worry.  "Doctor Grace did a fine job of sewing me up and unless I end up doing summersaults I doubt her handiwork will come undone. I promise do do what you say and if I feel like I am going to endanger the mission I will let you know." 

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"Okay. Let me do some digging and figure out how many guys he's got- and where, precisely, their HQ is at. Then I'm going to finish this. In biblical fashion. I need to send a message, apparently, that you shouldn't fuck with my people."

Ilse had met with Kathryn a couple times, but she'd never seen a look like this on her boss's face before. It was rage- but cold rage, seemingly passionless, but no less deadly. Kathryn stood and whispered instructions to Jack.

A few hours later, Ilse was sitting in the backseat of a black sedan. Jack was driving. A younger man named Finn, looking uncomfortable in his suit, was sitting in the passenger seat. There were two other cars of Kathryn's people as well.

The Don glared out at the building.

"I've bribed the police and fire departments. Extremely generously- so we've got 20 minutes from the first call until they show up. I'm going to burn their building down with them inside. If they come out, we'll shoot them."

She shot a look back at Ilse.

"You'll stay in the car- at least initially. I don't want Grace chasing after me with a scalpel."

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