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I-3 - So You Say You Need An Archangel

written by Collin J.H. Chang

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Published: 1997 | Size: 18 KB (3340 words) | Language: english | Rating: R

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A MSCL and "John Constantine, Hellblazer" crossover

based on stories and characters created by Winnie Holzman

Vic Racine, the Devil himself, took a hold of Angela Chases' shoulder and yanked her through the door, tearing her sweater in the process.

"I see you've failed to heed my advice, Amanda. You should have 'waken up!'" Vic twisted Angela's arm and shoved her to the floor, where she landed hard on her bottom next to her friend, Rayanne Graff.

"My name is Angela!" she shouted back at Vic. "And I did 'wake up'! I figured out who you are!" Vic simply chuckled to himself and slipped a toothpick into his mouth. He began shifting the toothpick from corner to corner as he did when Angela first met him, back when she saw him as only a substitute teacher who had tried to broaden her mind, make her see the world in a different way, instead of seeing him as he really was -- evil, the truest evil. The corruptor of souls. And now he had gotten to Rayanne; corrupted her already dark soul and manipulated her into destroying an angel, the homeless angel who sang songs, the one Angela had befriended. Angela had watched as Rayanne chainsawed the angel's wings off and removed her heart for delivery to Vic.

Angela turned to Rayanne and stared as Rayanne coughed. The sound of something wet hit the floor -- a dark red liquid that added to the growing puddle in front of Rayanne. "Oh, my God," Angela whispered. "Rayanne... what did he do to you?"

Rayanne looked up at Angela and gave her one of her characteristic smiles, meant to deflect any tension. It somehow fit the scenario in a morbid, strange way. "Angelica," Rayanne croaked as she wiped blood from her lips and chin with the sleeve of her plaid shirt. "Glad you could make it. Sorry you made it."

Angela turned to Vic, "What did you do to her?"

"Ahhhh..." Vic said, long and drawn-out, in that distinct English accent of his. "You don't want to know. It'd only bore you. And besides, I didn't do anything to her. She did it to herself! Now, listen and try to keep up even though you young people today have worse attention spans than poltergeists. I needed the wings of an angel to replace my own that were lost... a really long time ago. I needed the heart of an angel, which I got. Now I need the blood of a virgin. I know, I know... it's cliche... the blood of a virgin, but I didn't make the rules."

"What are you trying to do?" Angela asked in a low, scared voice.

Vic ignored her question and leaned down so his face was less than a foot away from Angela's. "Know any virgins... Angela?"

Brain Krakow almost stumbled over Sharon Chersky as the two teenagers finished climbing the stairs that lead to the basement of the Catalano residence. "Watch those hands, Krakow," Sharon growled at Brian as they quitely and quickly went from the backyard to the front of the house to the street.

"What!? You think, like, I would actually, like, try something at a time like this!?" Brian squeeked out, panicked.

"Yes!" Sharon said back, "And keep it down!" Sharon took the rolled-up parchment from Brian and looked around the neighborhood. "We have to get to the loft, but how...?"

The bright headlights of an approaching car shined on Sharon and Brian. They both shielded their eyes as the car stopped in front of them. A figure, unseen due to the glare of the headlights, stepped out of the car.

"Hey," the voice said in its typically casual manner. Jordan Catalano shut the door to his red Plymouth, shoved his hands deep within the pockets to his jeans, and crossed over to Sharon and Brian. "What's up?"

"Like, nothing much," Brian said with an obvious edge of fear and sarcasm. "Just, like, for starters, what is your name doing on this?" Sharon unrolled the scroll and showed it to Jordan who took it and examined it by his car's headlights.

"Oh, yeah... this," Jordan said finally.

"This?" Sharon repeated. "THIS is your signature, right? Signed in (gross) blood!"

Yeah, I guess so," Jordan said casually.

"Well, like, what's the story with this?"

"Like, what do you mean?" Jordan asked as he leaned back against the hook of his car.

"Well, like, duh squared! Who asked you to sign this!?" Sharon asked, the tension causing her voice to rise. "Kyle had one just like it and now he's missing!"

"Kyle...?" Jordan asked.

"My boyfriend!" Sharon yelled. "Well, not my boyfriend now since we, like, broke up, then, kinda, got back together... Look! That's not important! Who did you sign this for?"

Jordan concentrated for a while, then, "Oh. Yeah. Mister Racine."

"Vic!?" Brian asked, the name sounding strange since he was normally so formal with authority figures. "Vic Racine got you to sign your name in blood on this scroll?"

"Yeah," Jordan said, "I thought it was a hall pass." Jordan looked down at the parchment. "Guess it is kinda big to be a hall pass."

"Look, if Vic is behind all this, then we really have to get to the loft and find Angela and Rayanne," Sharon said.

"Angela?" Jordan asked. "She said she was going to look for Graff."

Sharon and Brian exchanged looks, then proceeded to jump into Jordan's car. Jordan stood in the street and watched them sitting in his car.

"Well, come on!" Sharon finally shouted at Jordan. "We have to go help them!" Jordan got into the driver's seat. After a few seconds, he asked, "Where are we going again?"

In unision, Brian and Sharon shouted, "The loft!"

"Oh. Right," Jordan said and put the car in drive.

Angela tried to keep her bottom lip from quivering as Vic continued to stare into her eyes.

"It's funny how you notice the strangest things even when you're completely terrified," Angela thought to herself. "As Vic starred at me with that really twisted smile he had on, all I could think about was how he wasn't blinking. He just kept starring at me and didn't blink once. His eyes must have really... ached." Angela blinked really hard as Vic straightened his back and took a few steps away from Angela and Rayanne.

"Now, look, Chase," Vic said to Angela, "Considering our past, I'm really going to try my best not to cause you any pain, but, in my experience, I've found it to be basically unavoidable." From behind him, Vic produced a large knife and twisted the blade so it caught the little light in the room and gleamed. "Die knowing that you were a good student, Angela Chase, with lots of potential." Vic took a menacing step forward as Angela reflexivley backed away.

"Hang on!" Rayanne shouted as she produced a bottle of whiskey from one of her large coat pockets. "I'm done trying to fight you, alright?" Rayanne explained to Vic as she unscrewed the whiskey bottle's cap. "But if Angela's going out now, at least give her a tiny break, okay?" Without waiting for Vic's consent, Rayanne offered the bottle to Angela.

Angela didn't accept the bottle right away. She just stared at Rayanne and said, "Rayanne! You said you weren't going to drink anymore!"

"Um, Angela...?" Rayanne began, "I don't think whether I'm on or off the wagon is your biggest priority right this minute, okay?" Angela brought the bottle to her lips. Rayanne assisted by tipping the bottle back so the whiskey flowed into Angela's mouth. Angela immediately began to cough as Rayanne took the bottle from her.

"Alright," Vic said. "Are we done now? Can we get on with this? Please?"

"But don't you want some?" Rayanne said holding the bottle out to Vic. He stared at the bottle for a second, then reached out to take it. Like a bolt of lightening, Rayanne lashed out and smashed the bottle over Vic's head. The bottle shattered and the whiskey poured over Vic's face.

Vic held his head and screamed as his face began to burn. Rayanne stood up and shoved Angela towards the door. "What's happening to him?" Angela shouted.

"I had a priest bless the whiskey!" Rayanne said. "A trick Tino taught me! Now get the hell out of here!" Rayanne removed her cigarette lighter and flicked it as Angela ran out the door. Rayanne pressed the flame to Vic's face and the holy whiskey caught fire. Vic's screams grew louder by decibals as he stumbled and fell against the wall.

Jordan's Plymouth screeched to a halt in front of the loft and Sharon and Brian climbed out of the car.

"Angela!" they called. "Angela! Rayanne!" Suddenly, Angela burst out the front door of the loft and ran toward her friends. "Angela! Oh my God!" Sharon said as she hugged her. "What's wrong? What's going on? Where's Rayanne?" Angela couldn't speak. She only pointed with a trembling finger up at the loft.

"Graff is in there?" Brian asked to no one in particular.

"Hey, you hear something?" Jordan asked when a car engine revved to life and a car plowed through the garage door of the loft, sending splinters of wood everywhere. The teenagers ducked and covered their heads, then looked up to see Rayanne sitting at the driver's seat of the speeding car. A heap in the shape of a human was curled up in the passenger seat, smoke drifting from the heap and filling the car.

"Rayanne!" Sharon shouted.

"Does she even have her license?" Brian shouted.

Sharon turned to Brian and said, "Krakow... get a clue."

"What!?" Brian turned to look at Jordan and Angela who were watching the car Rayanne was driving continue down the road then make a left turn.

"That's Rickie's cousin's car," Angela said in a timid, faraway voice.

"Where's she going?" Sharon asked Angela.

Angela raised her head up and brushed back her hair around her ears with her fingers. "Um... I don't know. The pier maybe?"

"What makes you say that?" Brian asked.

Angela made an angry face at Brian. "Just a feeling, okay? God..."

"C'mon, we gotta go," Sharon said as they all piled into Jordan's car.

Rayanne drove like a bat out of hell, taking her eyes off the road only briefly when Vic began to chuckle slowly. As his laughter grew, Rayanne asked him, "Like, what's so funny?"

Vic sat up. His face was burned black in some areas -- his cheeks, forehead, and chin -- and his hair had been reduced to a smoking, charred crew-cut. "Ohhhh, just that I really underestimated you," he said to Rayanne. "You're a clever girl. More so than I gave you credit for."

"Yeah, right... you probably thought I was just a drunk. Didn't know no better."

Vic tried to make himself more comfortable and shifted in his seat, but he stopped and winced in pain. "Exactly," he said to Rayanne. "You've done quite a job on me, I'll say. But then... you've done quite a job on yourself, haven't you? With my help, of course."

Rayanne entered a coughing fit and began to convulse, blood flowing from her mouth. The car swerved as Rayanne tried to keep it on the road.

"Go to hell," she croaked.

"Only if you come with me, luv," Vic said smugly as he smiled at her.

Across town, little Danielle Chase, Angela's younger sister, opened the back door to her house and struggled with a large garbage bag as she made her way to the side of the house where the garbage cans rested.

"And make sure you put the lids back on securely so no animals will get into the garbage and make a mess!" Patty, the matriarch of the Chase household, called after Danielle.

"I know! I know!" Danielle called back in her typically annoyed voice.

Danielle stopped at the nearest garbage can and removed the lid. She hefted the garbage bag up to the mouth of the can and let it drop in. As the bag hit the bottom of the can, a loud sound of a twig snapping from further off caused Danielle to jump. She stared into the darkness with wide eyes. She could see nothing, but sensed something out there. Something large and slow-moving. She slowly backed up to the back door and the safe light of her house, then when she was ten feet away, she made a break for it, ran into the house, and slammed the door.

From inside the house, Patty's voice called out, "Danielle! I told you not to slam the door!"

All was quiet in the backyard of the Chases' house. Then the darkness moved. It lumbered out into a small patch of light. The darkness was tall, incredibly big, and covered in dark fur. It stared at the Chase house with gleaming red eyes and it's lips pulled back, revealing a snout-full of sharp, canine teeth. It emitted a low, soul-churning growl, then quickly bounded off into the darkness.

Jordan drove as fast as he could as Sharon hunched forward from the back seat and stared out the windshield, searching for the car Rayanne drove. Angela sat in the passenger seat, slumped against the door, silent.

"Do you see her?" Sharon asked everyone.

No one answered.

Rayanne pushed the pedal to the floor as the car pulled onto the pier.

"We're approaching the end of the pier. You'd better slow down, not speed up, if you want to be able to stop in time," Vic notified Rayanne calmly.

"Who said I wanted to stop?" Rayanne said without looking at him.

"What? You didn't have a priest bless the entire river, did you?"

"No, I didn't... Vic," Rayanne said, finally looking him right in the eyes.

The car's engine revved as it leapt off the edge of the pier and gracefully arched into the water. After it came to rest, it slowly began to sink.

Inside, the water level was up to Rayanne' stomach. Soon, they would be covered in a blanket of black liquid.

"Can I ask what you think this is going to accomplish?" Vic asked Rayanne.

She turned to Vic with a curious grin on her face. "I think the fire must have damaged your nerves, Vic. Can't you feel what's on your right wrist?"

Vic looked at Rayanne as he pondered her words, then, slowly, he tried to lift his right hand. He couldn't. "What the hell..?" he said to himself as he pulled back the sleeve of his coat to reveal the handcuffs that connected his arm to the car door. "You...!" Vic roared as he lunged at Rayanne. She fell over into the back seat of the car and managed to stay just out of Vic's reach. "You think sinking me to the bottom of a river is going to keep me from claiming your soul!?"

"Hey! I'm willing to give it a try!" Rayanne shouted back. She had to lift her head up to avoid getting it wet, the water level was so high. "Well, Vic, it's been real. I'll be seeing you." Rayanne reached over and pulled the car door handle towards her, then she shoved against the door with all her might. The door didn't budge, but she shoved again and again until finally a small flow of water began seeping into the car. Then, like a chain reaction, the door was forced open and the car was filled with water.

"Graff!" Vic shouted as the water was about to engulf him. "Someone close to you! They'll be my revenge!" And the water swallowed him up.

Submerged, Rayanne held her breath and began to swim out through the open car door, but something snagged her coat and she was yanked back. The unexpected jerking motion caused her to lose the air she had. Trying not to panic, but not doing a very good job, Rayanne turned around to see Vic holding onto her coat; his right arm, the handcuffed one, was twisted at an odd angle, jutting out against the socket, his shoulder dislocated on purpose so he could reach back and take hold of any part of Rayanne he could grab. A maniacal sneer spread across his mouth.

Jordan brought his Plymouth to a halt in the middle of the pier and the four teenagers ran the rest of the way to the end. They stared out at the black water, trying to find some sign of Rayanne and the car.

"Um, shouldn't one of, like, jump in?" Brian asked timidly.

Someone was squeezing Rayanne's head. Hard. She blinked, but couldn't make the darkness nor the pressure in her head go away. She struggled to get free of her coat and even when she finally did and made it out of the sinking car, she realized that she had no idea how far down she was. She didn't know how far it was to the surface or even which way the surface was. "You're going to die anyway," she heard her own voice say. "Just shut your eyes and let go," her voice continued as the blackness and the pressure grew all around her.

Then a new voice spoke to her and she saw a bright light surround her. "It's going to be alright, Rayanne," this gentle voice said to her. "I've got you. Don't worry."

She opened her eyes and she was somewhere else. Some place... white, was the only way she could begin to describe it. A figure stood behind her. She turned to look at the figure and there was... "Mister Katimsky!?" Rayanne cried out in surprise. "Oh, great," Rayanne said as she started fishing through her coat pockets. "I'm dead and you're the guy who greets me?" she said. "Hey, you got a cigarette?"

"I pull you from the jaws of death and the only thing you can say is 'Hey, you got a cigarette'?" Mr. Katimsky asked Rayanne.

"Yeah, you got one?" Rayanne asked cavalierly. "Wait a minute. You said you pulled me from the jaws of death? Like, I'm not dead?"

"No," Katimsky said. "And you're not going to die."

"You mean... what? I'm cured? No more AIDS? Get out!"

"Vic Racine said the next time you seek the protection of an angel, you'd better make sure it's an Archangel."

"And you're a...?" Rayanne didn't finish her sentence; just let it hang there. She looked around and saw that she was alone. "Hello? Mr. Katimsky?"

Then Rayanne vanished from the white place.

Angela was not going to cry. That's what she told herself. "But that never works," she thought. "Crying. REAL crying just hits you all of a sudden and you just can't stop." And as Angela began to cry slowly; tears forming in her eyes and falling as she blinked, the three others continued staring into the water, not sure what to do. Behind them, someone cleared their throat and asked, "Anyone got a cigarette?"

They all spun around.

Rayanne stood before them, dripping wet, with an expectant look on her face. "Well?" she asked impatiently. "Anyone still smoke in this country? Catalano?" They all surged forward and surrounded Rayanne. "Hey, hey! Careful! I'm damp."

THE END of Episode 3

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I-4 - All Apologies by Collin J.H. Chang
Published: 1997 | Size: 13 KB (2357 words) | Language: english english | Rating: R
Waiting for 5 votes before displaying rating information.
A MSCL and "John Constantine, Hellblazer" crossover

Read this story now: I-4 - All Apologies

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“Ignore her. She got up on the wrong side of the coffin this morning.”

Enrique (Rickie) Vasquez, Episode 9: "Halloween"