He was in for it. Scott was not fooling himself. Baseball bat or knuckle-rings. Angry he reacted, blurting it out. Determined.
“Not a word.”
He snapped his head over at Mwenye.
“You hear, Mwenye? Not a fucking word.”
Scott shouted it over to his friend.
“Whatever this fucker does ….. Mum’s the word …..”
Scott, apprehensive as hell, still he stared back defiant into the fiery urges in Mzama’s eyes. As good as pissing himself with his nerves. But standing up to this prick Mzama. Seeing him alive with the pressing need to get on with it. To beat the shit out of him. Baseball bat or knuckle-rings?
— – – –
Mzama was taking it easy. Knowing from experience the power of psychological threat. The power of the mind weakening the resolve. Holding up his outspread hand before Scott’s gaze. Adorned with knuckle-dusters catching the sunlight through these slats. Seeing Scott’s eyes take in the horrible instrument being stuck in his face.
The general’s raised hands applauded Scott’s defiant outburst .. stood behind Mwenye, dominating over the captain.
“For a hired killer …..”
The general called across at Scott good-humouredly. He could afford to.
“Never did like snipers. Nasty breed. Cowards. Hardly a fair way to fight.”
Scott could have answered back that embedding your troops in among the population .. putting the innocent at risk in any attack .. that was hardly a fair way to fight either. But neither he nor the general were into discussing the ethics of war at right this moment. Scott had other pressing needs for his attention. Mzama playing with his little toy.
Like an actress in a some cheap soap Mzama had overtly dressed his hand. Toyingly spreading his fingers up. Stroking the knuckle-dusters down onto his fingers. Letting the sunlight sparkle on the steely threat. Playing Scott’s nerves as he coaxed the rings down over his knuckles. Knowing what Scott was seeing. Sensing the fears he was raising. After all, Mzama had stuck this particular set of brass knuckles in his pocket for a special reason.
Thick glistening steel .. each knuckle-ring good-and-wide .. each bar adorned with four elevated studs. No ordinary thug’s brutal fighting trick. A set of knuckle rings meant to smash muscle to pulp. Studded force designed to crack ribs. Brass knuckles that could pummel their way through any muscled defence. And no way could white-boy here miss the signs …..!
Mzama indicated the baseball ball casually dangling off the bar stuck between Scott’s arms.
“Or this …..?”
Mzama meaningfully clenched together his fists.. Then menacingly he stretched his hand open again .. fingers held up tensed. The steel glistened orange in the light filtering through broken walls. The slats were keeping some of the light out. But not the heat. Or was it the threat of getting himself beaten to shit that had Scott in a sweat?
“You know what I reckon …..?”
The general grabbed back Scott’s attention. Did Scott fucking care what that sucker thought? The general .. Scott’s failed target for this mission .. still alive and well .. had taken up position behind the big armed chair. Hands on Mwenye’s broad shoulders. As if they were a pair of buddies about to catch a movie on TV. Settling down with a pizza and a few beers. A movie jam-packed-full with action. With Scott playing the lead role.
“Nothing like starting off personal. The personal touch.”
The general nodded to Mzama. An order to get things moving.
Annoyingly Mzama spread out the fingers of his hand .. intimidating brass knuckles pressed on the chest .. outspread hand cold against Scott’s sweating skin. Cold menacing threat kissing the sweaty hardness of Scott’s squared-off pec.
Not reacting to the pawing took some control. Scott felt sick at the touch. At the first sweep of an extended pinkie over his nipple, Scott felt his blood rise. Men did not do that! The hand, still fully loaded with a studded set of knuckle dusters, was sweeping lightly over his right pec. Scott knew the prick was goading him. But it still took effort not to take the bait.
“Personal. Getting the feel of each other.”
The general’s goading words were followed through. Mzama had the technique. Touching Scott up .. and making him feel sick, angry. A direct line of communication from a threat playing with the nub on his chest straight to a rush of the blood. Scott shivered .. an uncanny mixture of loathing and pleasure .. both at the same time. His girls worked him over like that .. just right .. just the same way. Got him going. But not this fella, not a man. Not this Mzama. This touching him up wasn’t leading anywhere nice ….
The steel-adorned pinkie gave his nipple another taunting pass. Worryingly Scott noticed it was hard. Mzama had got him aroused. The situation was playing on his nerves .. anxiety, fears, arousal .. not far from each other. And if Scott had spotted the change .. a sadist like Mzama, he was not going to miss a trick.
Mzama was massaging the steel lower down.
“And THIS .. this feels good …..”
Mzama’s steel-coated fingers were tripping down the hardwood ladder of Scott’s solid abs.
“Must have taken some work .. to get like this ….”
Mzama was smirking .. enquiring without being interested in any reply .. looking mocking into Scott’s face.
“Born sportsman, eh?”
Scott didn’t bother to answer.
“Sports. School. College. The works …..”
Unexpected, unwarned, the hand on Scott’s muscled belly clutched. Fingers clenched into a hard tight grip on Scott’s abs. Finger-tips dug in. Scott’s eyes opened wide .. with the surprise .. wincing at the sudden pain. An unexpected painful seizure. A moment later, it was gone. Mzama had mysteriously let him go.
“In my village .. as a kid .. we played football with a tin can. All we had.”
Suddenly again talons clawed hard into Scott’s unwary ab muscles Scott grimaced. Then the shock was gone.
“When we were not herding the cattle. Tilling the fields. Hauling water. Working to have anything to eat.”
Mzama’s knuckle-ring-loaded hand was tapping open-handed at Scott’s midriff. Instinctively Scott tensed. A light drumming noise of a hard-packed hand on rock-hard abs. This prick Mzama was full of anger, Scott thought. Bristling with resentment. Bitter that life had dealt him a rotten hand.
And it seemed Mzama reasoned Private Scott Daley was the source of all he had suffered in his life. Scott tensed. Another drum-slap from a danger-laden hand put him on his guard.
— – – – — – – – — – – –