"I'll take a southern comfort on the rocks with a splash of seltzer." Ara demanded of the bartender as she let the hood that she had made out of her cursed scarf, fall around her neck.
"If you want southern comfort," a man with a scar on his bare shoulder said in a smirnoff stained slur, "I got some right here." Ara scanned the bastard up and down and scoffed,
"And I have something called english aim where we kill things with one shot. Not like you Americans who shoot and see if you can hit something. So if you want to see that, get a bit closer, otherwise get your drunken arse to the next barstool down." He went to stand with a smile but collapsed to the floor as the bartender set Ara's drink in front of her. "Clean up on isle one." she smirked and took a gulp of her drink. Outside, someone was strumming on a banjo with a steady beat as a trombone swerved around with a slow and easy melody.
"That an english accent I hear?" The bartender asked with a grey bearded smile.
"What else would it be?" She asked, "I'm from London."
"We been gettin' a hella blond hai'd english gals round Orleans lately. One come in yesterday lookin' for someone." He told her. Ara froze with her upper lip hovering in her drink as it spilled a bit into her mouth, cooling her tongue. It couldn't have been. Of all the bars in this city, was it really that easy?
"Some lost man?" ara asked, keeping her cool as she gulped at the bourbon again and set it back down. The bartender nodded, almost amazed.
"you know, yeah. She be upstai's righ' now on first floor. Girl's been out all day." He said cheerily and Ara slammed a few pounds on the bar counter. "Girl, this ain't no money I can use!" the man called after her but she ignored him as she flew upstairs. The bartender shook his head and then pressed a red button under the counter. Ara walked up and down the short hallway, silently and on her toes. There were fifteen rooms until the stairwell. If she kicked them all in at one at a time, Chrysanthemum would surly hear her. She stood in the doorway of the stairwell that led to second floor, looking back from where she came. She began walking slowly back down towards the other stairs, listening, her heart beating. This could all be over soon and Arabella Porter would be able to smuggle herself back home. She finally knocked on the first door and when a man opened it, she whispered her apologies and said, "wrong room." She did this for every room on the first floor until room number twelve. Ara stared at the door and knocked.
"Coming!" a voice like bells said from behind it and opened. Ara pulled a pair of handcuffs from her bag that she had once stolen from Thomas.
"Miss Chrysanthemum Merrenhaw?" Ara asked politely.
"This is she." She girl smiled before grunting as the sky pirate pushed her to the ground and held her as she struggled to put one handcuff on her own wrist and the other on Thomas' ex fiancee. They both stopped and stared into each other's terrified gaze when there was a knock on the door.
"New Orleans Police, open up!" Someone said casually from outside.
"Please just- mmmmhhhktrsruhgjmmmm" Chrys' mouth was blocked over by Ara's hand and when Ara went to stand up, she couldn't. There was another knock and the police officer repeated what they had said before.
"we're going to have to slam this door down, ladies!" The two young women stood up.
"Listen girl," Ara said, examining the handcuffs with one around chrys' wrist and one around her own, "we're going to open that door. When we do, hold your arms out like you're going to fly, and run forward." Chrys glared at her.
"Who are you?"
"No time for that, you stupid rich girl, now come on. If you want to live, do as I say." So with that, Chrys opened her arms as Ara reached forward, opening the door. The officers looked in and before they could put one foot in front of the other, the two young women thrust forward and ran, jolting as the neck of the front policeman was punched by the impact of rough metal chain and knocked back as the runaways stumbled and ran down the hallway. All eyes went to the stairs as they came down and bolted out of the bar, Chrysanthemum stopping in the street of New Orleans to breath. "No! Come on!" Ara shouted like a drill sergeant and they kept running, sirens sounding behind them that came from the nostrils of mechanical horses as the police jumped on their animals and raced after. Upon realizing that the cops had horse power, Ara dragged Chrys in an alley way and into the bustling pushing crowd of a voodoo festival that was happening. They kept shoving through people but it hurt when almost being separated by a person or two except for their straining arms that pulled like an awkward and inconsistent game of tug-of-war due to the handcuffs that kept them inseparable. A burning sensation stayed constant in Ara's palm as she clenched her free wrist, holding on tightly to the key that could unlock the handcuffs. A fast and wild drum beat vibrated against the atmosphere and faded as the two young women ran out of the crowd and into the late twilight, settling in another stray alley way.
"Night's falling and I'm cuffed to a crazy hooligan in an alley way with stray cats and rats. I don't even know who you are!" Chrys started tearing up.
"My name is Arabella Porter. I'm a friend of-" With a smack, Ara grunted a bit and held her cheek, now flush from Chrys' hand.
"You're the sky pirate." She huffed and let her posture fall. "I've read a letter that he wrote you ,little low born, Ripper prey." Ara gawked at her.
"Are you calling me a whore?" she asked and Chrys looked her in the eye with a confirming glare.
"Did you really think he'd actually go for a neet like you?" It took that much and Ara's knuckles slammed into the girl's face, knocking her into the wall; a tear falling down the lady's cheek but she retaliated by grabbing Ara's hair and yanking it. Ara yanked back.
"As if I'm jealous of some stupid, spoiled, corset wearing bitch like you who marries a copper that really just wants to be an AROMA F*CKING THERAPIST WHO DOESN'T KNOW" she now had Chrys against the brick wall "THE DIFFERENCE," she punched her in the gut "BETWEEN JACK THE RIPPER'S HAND WRITING!" punch, "AND THE BLOODY QUEEN OF PORTUGAL!" punch. Chrys kneed her in the gut finally and pushed Ara off. They circled each other for a moment or two.
"Then why did you sleep with him?" Chrys asked angrily. Ara laughed and looked her provokingly in the eye.
"It was a fun and easy way out of jail." She said between the lips of a malicious smile.
"You're a home wrecker."
"I turtle dove too."
"How dare you touch my fiancee with those filthy, white chapel hands."
"Oh, just wait till wedding night. His hands are a lot dirtier than mine." Ara whispered and Chrys yelled as she slammed Ara in to the wall now but Ara turned the tables and began punching at her cheek. It wasn't until she noticed that Chrys wasn't fighting back, that she noticed the girl had fainted and was now completely bruised in the cheek. Ara let the lady drop and kicked her side a bit. "She needed that." the sky pirate sighed and sat down next to the fainted Chrys, wiping blood from the girl's mouth with her thumb. "I'm sorry. Is my finger too dirty for you? ….. cow." She scoffed and closed an eye.