…. In continuation
Somewhere in a field, the composite material of the suit worn by the Grey Squirrel thwarts the sharp wintry breeze of a swift night, as if shrugging off the nuisance of winter’s icy touch through the electric-spawned heat within the nodes. Martin bends down and with his gloved hand, he scoops up a handful of snow and brings his arm and hand towards his chest, inspecting the precipitation. He clenches his fist, which melts the snow instantly to water that pours out from every opening of his hand. As the water follows the beckoning of gravity, it begins to freeze when impacting the ground. He feels strong anger that his friend may be in danger, and grits his teeth under the mask at the thought. He thinks back to the confrontation at the restaurant: “I… its.. its.. its Marino! Marino and his boys who are after the Neurotic Bunny! He’s got hideouts everywhere, ‘cept his favourite one is his white castle…” The gangster mentions, referring to a mansion on Mississauga Road. Martin shakes off his thoughts, looks ahead and adjusts the computer readout within his mask of the location to the Marino mansion. Once satisfied, he dashes forward in the snow towards a small clearing of trees, affording a view of street lamps below the small hill.
Down the street a middle-aged, brunette female walks her small dog along Dundas Street, enjoying the view of suburban intrusion into the deciduous forestland of Mississauga, due to the University campus style of construction and the preserved architecture of the church. A dark silhouette stands on a hill, and bounds forth to jump onto a street lamp from the hibernating forest of the area. The woman jumps back in surprise, and her tiny pooch begins yelping at the figure. Martin, who crouches on the end of the pole with his hands gripping for support, says, “Lady, do not fear me. I’m a good guy!” to which she replies by asking, “Who are you?” Martin recoils slightly in surprise, and with his left arm clutching the pole, rolls his body over, suspends himself until his body is perpendicular to the ground, directly below the light, and releases his grip. He lands softly in the snow into a crouch, stands up and walks over to the woman with his hands extended away from his body, as if trying to calm her down. He attempts at an answer, however suddenly when the full light of the street lamp affords her a better view of the Grey Squirrel, she screams out of fear and turns around to run, pulling her dog behind her. Martin feels a slight buzz in his hear, and suddenly hears tires crunching snow a short distance away. The pedestrian, unbeknownst to Martin who is named Mrs. Artinez, runs out onto the intersection of Dundas Street and Mississauga Road, and the Grey Squirrel witnesses a black SUV appear to her right and striking her without slowing down.
Martin sustains a face of incredulity as he witnesses her body fling around the side of the SUV and slump to the ground. The SUV slows down after a few moments and waits for a few seconds. With tires screeching on the salty road, it speeds away on Mississauga road and disappears around a bend of the street. Martin rushes over and kneels down beside the body, slumping his shoulders. He thinks to himself: “This is all of my fault. I shouldn’t have revealed myself. I don’t even know what I am doing. This suit appears in my life, and all I have ever wanted was to do some good in this world. That is the sole reason I joined the police force, to protect the good folk. I had nobody to protect me, and people cannot even begin to protect themselves. My life is a contradiction, and always has been. Next to my friends, all I had were my books. Science, philosophy and any great thinkers I could relate with, since I also had my own ideas. I see the comedy in it all now. We looks for synchronicity in our lives, however, there is not a single book that can deal with what is in front of me now.” Without Martin realizing it, a nondescript sedan slows to a stop behind him, with the blinding headlights in a direct-line with his eyesight when he slowly turns his head to look behind him. A man steps out of the driver side, and remarks: “You masked freak! What did you do to that lady?” Martin responds by exclaiming, “She was struck by a car! I rushed over to see if I could help!” The driver yells back, “I don’t see any car! You psychopath, step away from her!” Martin stands up and tries reassuring with his right hand extended, palm out, and the driver reaches into his car and pulls out a baseball bat. Martin dashes toward Mississauga road, and disappears into the wintry-laden brush, thinking to himself “Excellent, not only am I a masked hypocrite, but also a costumed killer!”
Meanwhile, the Neurotic Bunny lies in a heap of his own blood, which is mixed with wine from the cellar that the gangsters temporarily imprisoned him in. The wine-casks surround him in a semi-circle as his back rests against the bottom rack, and suddenly he leans over, removing hair from his face and breaks off a faucet with his bound hands, swiftly ingesting the red content that spills out. He thinks to himself: “Well, if my world is ending, I might as well enjoy a taste of Italy.” He sits upright, wiping his red-stained mouth with his sleeve, and tilts his head down and closes his eyes. He begins to think about tonight’s sequence of events: He sees himself jumping into the courtyard over the ten foot high, gold-plated cast-iron fence that surrounds the Marino mansion. He leaps into the air and smashes down on the steps, turns around and kicks the front doors open into a magnificent foyer, decorated lavishly as if the 1920s was preserved entirely in its décor. The Neurotic Bunny is familiar with the layout, so he runs upstairs and smashes through the double mauve doors into a study, where Marino sits in a chair smoking a cigar. He sees the butt end of a gun smash into his face, and everything fades to black…. Suddenly, a hand grabs the back of his head and submerges his face into a sink, over and over and over; then, he inhales and his vision fades back to the split second when a nightstick connects with his head, then his stomach, to which the assailant changes to an under grip and smashes the end of the stick under his chin, changing his perspective to the lamp on the ceiling….
Marc shakes his head and at that moment, he hears the cellar door open and sees two gangsters walking towards him. They stand on either side of Marc and a third, large figure approaches from the darkness, with the sparkling resonance of a gold ring on the pinky finger of Marino’s left hand; after noticing the ring, Marc chuckles and looks up to Marino’s face, saying, “Marino. Marino, Marino, Marino. This is like you. I always made sure the other guy lay flat on his back, but now I see that I’m the tournament champion!” Marino’s face expresses a snide grin, to which he responds by saying, “I always made sure my wager increased twofold. This time it is for pleasure. Now, let’s talk about business. You are here because I made it that way. It’s a dog eat dog world, and all I wanted was my money. But you, stinkin’ rodent, had to get in the way. You even played hero to save that girl. And now you risk exposing yourself. I like it that way, so this is what I am going to do.” Marino pulls out a pistol, and shoots both gangsters in the head with a swift gun hand. He says, “There. Whacked the guys who knew who ‘ya’ are. Now we can talk business….”
Somewhere in the Marino mansion, the glow of multiple T.V. screens reveal the banal outskirts of the premises, which are monitored by a sleepy gangster. Suddenly, the screen that is titled ‘Camera 1’ depicts a sharp, blue flash and winks out, jolting the gangster from sleep. He watches intently as another camera turns off, in the same fashion as the first, and scratches his head in confusion. To the gangster’s left, a large gothic shaped window allows the roof lights of the mansion to peek through softly, unhindered by the sheer size of the property and its outer defenses. He walks over to visually inspect the physical location of the cameras, and as his face begins to feel the winter chill through the pane, the feeling is suddenly replaced by a multiplicity of shards and a strong backward force that knocks him to the ground. The Grey Squirrel jumps through the broken window and lands in front of the incapacitated gangster, taking note that the body registers comatose symptoms through his ocular readouts, and scans the room. He activates his ‘Dopplar amplifier’, and runs to hide behind the room’s door. After several moments, realizing his fortune when nobody investigates his orchestrated entry, he tunes in and cycles through different voices throughout the house, until he stumbles upon two muffled yet distinct human voices; quickly, he tunes in further until the voices turn out clear and pays close attention.
Unbeknownst to the Neurotic Bunny, the Grey Squirrel listens in to the conversation between Marino and Marc. Back in the wine cellar, the smell of fresh blood irks Marc’s super-sensitive capability of smell and he grimaces in disgust, as he sits on the ground with his back against the first rack of the wine casks. Marc looks up to eye Marino and says, “You know, I just don’t get it. If I’m that much trouble, just whack me. But whatever you do, let the girl go. She doesn’t know anythin’ about any money, and honestly, the mobbies didn’t even pay for their drinks. And they made a mess at her bar. You owe HER a favor!” Marino scrunches his face up in confusion, and he points the gun at Marc, while saying, “You two-bit whackjob. All you ever thought about was yourself. I don’t know nothin’ about no girl, and she ain’t even important if I did. This is bigger than me or you. Stand up now, rodent.” Marino motions for Marc to stand up, to which Marc complies. Marino positions his body to Marc’s left side, and motions for Marc to exit the cellar. Marino says, “Go up to my study. And don’t try anythin’ funky. You’ve had enough wine, and now I need a drink. Take this, I don’t want your filth makin’ a mess in my home.” Marino throws Marc a red handkerchief, which Marc catches with bounded wrists and wipes his face; immediately, he notices a distinct symbol and makes a mental note of it. After moving through the house, Marc and Marino arrive at the familiar study, which is well lit with amber lighting, casting down shadows on the strong-colored décor. While aiming the gun at Marc, Marino circles around his desk to grab a bottle of whiskey off a dresser, and with one hand, he simultaneously grabs an empty glass as well. Marino pours himself a drink, sips some of the contents, and continues aiming the gun at Marc. The right side of his face curls into a slight smile, and he says, “Marc. Dearest Marc. Your’ in over your head boy. You should’ve thought about the consequences of comin’ afta my boys. The world has changed, and you don’t even know the slightest bit,” to which Marc replies, “what are you talkin’ about?” Marino brings the gun to his own face, resting the bottom of the pistol muzzle against the middle of his forehead, and closes his eyes. He replies solemnly, “You think messin’ with me was the only thing? You think takin’ down my soldiers will be my ruin? Let us say that, politics nowadays have a flavor of the ‘transnational’. Things don’t operate only for personal profit. Money has bitter consequences, and clandestine purposes.” Marc expresses a look of confusion and asks, “When have you become such an author?” Marino opens his eyes and displays a sardonic smile, replying, “You really don’t get it. Political elections, downsizing economies, its all monopoly capitalism, with power only for the few. You mess with me, and now you are under the eye of the Council.” Marc raises his eyebrows and says, “You ain’t as old-school as you think. North American films will do that to ya,” to which Marino sharply replies, “Shut it rat.” He walks over and touches the middle of Marc’s forehead with the gun, and says, “It’ll be my greatest pleasure to end you. But the Council has its own rules-” ….
The Grey Squirrel disengages the amplifier, and stands up to face the door. He opens the door a crack, enough to let the hallway light in, and rushes into the empty hallway, as he thinks to himself: [Thankfully, coincidence has Marc in this residence. I would ask Marino myself, but I wouldn’t be all too nice. I need to make it to the study quietly, not a chirp or sound, especially the chirp.]
The Grey Squirrel looks up, and jumps into the air and lands on a chandelier, steadying himself to minimize the noise. Not too distantly down the hallway, a door opens up and two gangsters walk in, chatting noisily about an acquaintance. The taller of the two looks to the shorter and says, “Yeah. If I could, Matteo would get whacked for talkin’, the old-fashioned way….” Until the Grey Squirrel drops, knees leading, off the chandelier and lands atop the backs of both men, dropping them down with a grisly ‘thud’ to the floor. He quickly dashes to the door, and sees a mobster watching the study door in the next hallway. Quietly and swiftly, the Grey Squirrel places a gloved hand over the gangster’s mouth, pulls him back into the hallway and throws him to the ground. With his hand covering the mouth, Martin drops his opposite arm into an elbow strike to the middle of his opponent’s forehead, instantly incapacitating him. He turns around and dashes into the next hallway, coming to a halt before a picture where a bullet narrowly misses his head, lodging itself into the foot of prince Machiavelli within the frame. The Grey Squirrel drops into a crouch, hidden by a low wall within the hallway that opens to an expansive foyer, which connects at the end to the study. Several gangsters begin firing at the Grey Squirrel; immediately, the gun shots reverberate through the walls and are heard by the Neurotic Bunny and Marino, with Marino’s gun still pointed point blank at Marc’s forehead.
With the continuation of the gunshots, Marino screams at Marc to turn around and move to the door, which is blocked by a large gangster in the doorway. He yells out at Marino, “Boss! This Gray freak is attacking the mansion! He may be an assassin, boss, lets get ya out,” to which Marino replies with an angry face, “Gray freak? Mustangs must be getting’ ballsy. The Council will take care o’ that Boy Scout street gang. Get us to the roof!” While being prodded in his back with Marino’s gun, Marc mutters under his breath, “Mustangs? Street gang? Martin better have a story for me.” The large gangster leads the way up to the roof through a staircase, followed by Marc, Marino and three other gangsters in procession; without realizing it, Marc drops the handkerchief in the hallway before a flight of stairs.
Suddenly, behind them, the awnings of the hallway cave in on two gangsters, to which the Grey Squirrel jumps over and feels the nodes pumping his leg muscles onward. He looks back and blasts his laser grapeshot at the wall, blocking the hallway altogether. He runs up the staircase, and blasts open the door to the rooftop. He stops when he notices the handkerchief, picking it up with his left hand and quickly inspecting it, taking note of the blood and the symbol. He slips the bloodied handkerchief into his right glove and continues forward. When he emerges from the darkness of the corridor, he dashes forward on the well-lit rooftop, which supports a helipad with a helicopter, with its propeller blades beginning to spin to prepare for flight. He witnesses Marc step in with Marino behind him, and the gangsters yell out ‘Gray Freak!’ and begin firing sub-machine guns at Martin. The Grey Squirrel crouches, quickly dashing to the left several steps, and jumps into the air above the gunfire. As he lands, he fires the pulsing-grapeshot at the ground in front of the gangsters, blinding them for several moments with the pulsating blue lights and debris. He sprints forward and lurches into a diving roll, taking out the legs of a gangster, and hammer-fist smashing down as he stands up. The gangsters run out of ammunition at this point, and the closest one attempts to pull out a pistol and receives a double-spin back elbow to the face, which knocks the current opponent and the one behind him over the edge of the roof; however, while he ripostes and performs this maneuver, the last gangster pulls out a knife and slashes Martin with a back hand slash, switches grip and sinks the blade deep into Martin’s left side. The gangster pulls the blade out and Martin stumbles with dizziness, over the ledge of roof to plummet three stories down.
As the events on the rooftop battle unfold, the helicopter pulls away from the fight scene. Marino looks to Marc and says, “The world is just a place. Every battle is for space and power. I never lose,” to which Marc displays a smug face, replying, “Looks like ya’ lost. He doesn’t seem like he’s a fan, and neither am I.” Marc growls and stomps the bottom of the helicopter, shaking the whole frame in mid-flight. The vibration startles the pilot, who swerves the helicopter left and right to adjust it. Marc leans back and kicks Marino, knocking the gun out of his grasp and onto the floor. Marc leans further back and unlocks the handle to the side door, and drops his right leg and boot down hard onto the floor once more. This shakes the helicopter again, which opens the door; suddenly, Marc rolls backwards and out of the helicopter, and wraps his shackles around the landing runner of the chopper. Suspended upside down, and with his leg muscles taut, he explosively kicks the runner and shatters the chains, dropping him through the tree line to hit branches as he plummets, slowing his fall to the ground. As he lands, he tucks himself into a roll to absorb the shock and stands up. He looks up into the sky to see the helicopter fly away. In the helicopter, Marino shakes off the physical attack and turns around to the pilot. The pilot asks, “Are we turnin’ back?” to which Marino responds, “No. The Council’s will is above one man, they will deal with him.”
Somewhere near the tops of the wintry-laden trees, a glowing orb floats haphazardly in-between branches, zipping this way and that, until it suspends itself directly above the Grey Squirrel, whose adorned body, some distance outside of the mansion property, lays still and exudes blood that freezes in the snow around him. The orb scatters bits of light to some snow on the treetops, which melts instantly into water that pours over Martin. The wintry breeze affords brevity, which turns the water gradually and quickly into snow, effectively burying the Grey Squirrel beneath it.