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Crossfire

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It was a good sunny day, one they might call pleasant, one right out of a children's drawing. Stereotypically bright, with a smiling sun shining on the top right corner just because adults didn’t want to subject their children to a reality called rainy days. Oblivious of the harsh atrocities pouring down on the world around him, the child draw; his mountains all perfect triangles setting in stone any laws geometry might have ever made. His river a stream of bright sparkling blue that had never seen any living thing drown in its own blue blood. His sun bright and happy even as it looks down at the torment, the subjugation, the wrath that the world below it had put on display like a lady with her jewels at the gala.

Min Yoongi was not such a child. Turns out, as life would have it, Min Yoongi missed out on the photogravure-worthy childhood that would have, should have, taught him that the sun was always bright.

And the sun was bright, too bright. Even with his hand on his eyes Yoongi squinted from his place on the ground to look a little bit more clearly at the rogues that loomed tall over his small figure that was kicked to the curb and bruised to the nook. He did put up a fight, Min Yoongi, the lithest cat on the block, was not one to give up without giving any of his coercers a fight.

So far the streak had been successful. Yoongi - 34, the fucked up bastards of the town 0. The score did not lie, he wasn't given "the lithe", he earned it. The title; a living proof that Min Yoongi always got away.

Until today.

The day was as usual as any in the life of a 24 year old orphan that was living in a shitty town, with shitty people that had shitty jobs and shitty attitudes. The kind of place where even those who earned couldn’t support a family of two, and no one even wanted to hire an orphan. Specially one notoriously feisty orphan.

It wasn’t exactly his fault he was feisty. Desperate times called for desperate measures and turns out when whatever piss-ass god, that ruled their lives, was planning Min Yoongi's piss-ass life journal he wrote "desperate" in every weekly column he had. 

Yoongi had a rough childhood. Now that is as under a statement as it gets. Orphaned at the tender age of five; not that huge a deal. Many kids are orphaned at even earlier. Better yet they even die before that. Worse yet, he meant worse yet. Being shuffled from orphanage to orphanage. Having to live everyday over and over again in just the hopes of the next meal and a miracle that someone out there might find a need for him, a purpose, an objective.

Not having a dream was bad, but not having a purpose, knowing there was never going to be anybody to mourn if his fragile teen body ever broke to pieces, weighed the boy down more than the pangs of hunger.

One thing that his lifestyle brought to him as a silver lining was survival instinct and the impeccable strength to haul his meek, tiny body to see to it that none of his offenders ever got what they wanted. His naturally stubborn personality often led him to difficult situations and the cherry on top was that he was straightforward to a fault. Pair that with a filthy mouth and its a complete recipe for a glutton for trouble. And boy was he in trouble this time around.

He had a busted lip, his ribs ached, probably more than two of them were either broken or fractured. All he silently hoped was it didnt rupture any of his internal organs else he was done for. And he didnt plan to be done for. But this looked like as a good time to be done for as any. With a gash across his forehead, one across his leg that saw to it that he didnt, couldnt, even attempt to run away and a large one on his collarbone, it seemed like it really was time to be done for.

If it was one, two, or even five bastards, Yoongi could've handled it fine. He was used to it. He had had encounters where he had outrun, outsmarted and outwitted people bigger, stronger and admittedly way more dangerous than himself. But nine people at once was just fate spitting in his face and telling him to call it quits. If he had his legs intact, he could at least avoid a fate worse than this, which he new inevitably awaited him for, after all, he did live in a shitty town, with shitty people that had shitty jobs and shitty attitudes.

'What can they do' Yoongi weighed his options. They could enslave him; take him to whatever gang leader or boss or dickwad that had hired these dullards to roughhouse him in the first place. They could probably just beat him up even more and then leave him for the time to take its toll, and maggots to rot his wounds until he dies of a gross puss-infected infection because he was too much of a wuss to cut off the infected area. They could cut him up and leave him be to bleed to death.

That was probably the safest of all the options that Min Yoongi weighed, since the town did have some brutal gangs with no mercy and frozen cold blood. Gangs that had burned their offenders alive, buried their offenders alive, fed their offenders to wild, hungry hounds alive and even injected acids to people when they were indeed very much alive.

Of course they could be just what Min Yoongi had heard them as, stories, rumors, tales of terrors spread to keep the hierarchical order. But the gang culture was dormant. A town even as small as his and as poor as his had an approximate twenty something gangs, big and small, going around doing the beatings, collecting their pay-ups and fucking anything living they fancied just because they could. Gang riots broke out. Gang wars also happened. Innocent ones got caught in the crossfire every other day.

Of course some gangs worked under the cliché of robin hood, to spout superficial shit like ‘helping the weak’ but Yoongi knew that was just an outward agenda to avoid massive gang wars. Some wars ended up wiping out whole famiglias, but sure enough another one would sprout out like the spawn of critters from the gutters of the social system.

One particular thought that rang at the back of his mind was that they could strip him of his dignity right there and then in the streets of the town square.

Now Yoongi was no virgin. He had spent the nights and days in these piss-stinking alleys, these close-to-landfill streets, the scratchy shaky walls and the cheap dollar-per-night inns that town sported. When you’re an orphan and a scrawny one at that, you learn to get around and you learn to sleep around as well. He wouldn’t say he was proud of his pre-teen and teen years where he let his hormones best him, sleeping with anyone and everyone that had offered a roof or a meal, and sometimes when he got lucky, both.

But it was all willingly.

Min Yoongi had never been subdued. He had never been in a game of control and power where the sole purpose was not to fuck him, but to show him that he’s nothing. And Min Yoongi did not like that. However he was not in a position to defend should the situation reach such drastic circumstances. And as life would have it, the situation did reach such drastic circumstances.

Unable to move his any of his four limbs, Yoongi immediately felt trapped and the taste of bile was already on his throat when a hand was shoved ruthlessly down his age-old, worn-out slacks. Yoongi had fought down, mislead and outrun five out of the nine thugs that were after him because they had asked him to be quite and grateful when they threw money at him because he was a pretty face. Straightforward to a fault and with a bad attitude; Yoongi had spat at the apparent leader of the crew and called him a pompous nut-sucker. Not the wisest of his outbursts, even if he does say so himself.

The disadvantage however of outrunning and outwitting five out of nine hormonal bastards was that he had no energy left when the remaining four jumped him all together. He was beaten to a pulp, kicked, punched and cut. His chest was stepped on and pressed, not relenting even when a shrill cry of pain left his mouth against his will when one of his ribs broke. Nothing he hadn’t experienced before though.

He had learned to get things broken and then let them heal. Learnt all too well that indeed that was how life worked. It broke things and then let them heal. Just in time for them to be broken again. This is why he was calm until that point.

But then came the dagger. Small and nifty, shining under the too bright sun and it’s too bright sunlight. The horror on his face reflected in its mirror-like sheen. The cool metal touched his cheek, his throat, his clavicle before it was brought down in a swift motion, ripping apart his top and his skin in the process.

Cut open, half-naked and vulnerable, unable to move and petrified, he still tried his best to get up and resist. Until his innards struggled relentlessly to bring up any trivial amount of food he had consumed in the past twelve hours.

The hand shoved inside his slacks felt like a rope tied around his neck, restricting, stiffling and nothing that he wanted. As soon as he tried struggling a little harder, the knife that had been responsible for the no-doubt deep gash on his chest, had come to rest at his jugular and he stilled. His brain deeming his life more important than his consent and his dignity.

“Someone, anyone!”, his voice came out hoarse and teetering on the edge of hysteria as he took his chances with a knife to his throat.

“Pretty little face like yours still thinks this piss-ass town has someone that would save you?” He was spat at; one hand stroking his dick to half-hardness while another hand, from a different person, shoved two fingers down his throat. “You sure gave the other dimwits the chase of their life along with a few good beatings, we admit.” Another grasped at his hair and kept his head upright as his slacks were pulled and bunched around his thighs.

His head was starting to hurt, was it the nausea or the hair-pulling; he didn’t really give a fuck about at this point. He was about to lull his mind into a false state of vegetation when he was let go; bodies around him piling on the floor like mosquitoes after a bug spray. His pants were done up and his shirt was adjusted by hands unfamiliar but nothing like those that had been on him previously. The touch this time around was gentle.

He could hear dull sounds, could make out people talking. Two; maybe three of them. No; just two, the third was his own inner voice, telling him he was better off dead at this point.

He saw two guys looming over his beaten and bruised up form. One of them tall and broad, almost as broad as himself but definitely taller. His frame was sturdy and he seemed to be smiling in the most oddest of ways, bordering on the edge of insane with a box-shaped grin in place that refused to leave. The other, more on the short side, maybe as tall as Yoongi himself was rounder and seemed to have his thumb and his forefinger at the bridge of his nose in frustration.

“I told you not to go overboard, we could’ve just cinched in, taken the guy and gotten out.” He sounded exasperated and Yoongi thought rightly so since the other, taller, seemed to still have his grin in place.

“I can’t help it, the smell of blood turns me on Ivy and no one knows that better than you.”, the reply wasn’t spoken but rather smiled at the other man. If smiling replies was possible. Ivy was a strange name for a man Yoongi thought but he was in no position to judge the men, insane or not, that had just saved his fate.

“Man! The boss isn’t going to be happy about you killing four men in one go on a fucking rescue slip of all things, dimwit.” The smaller of the two was beginning to lose his patience as he threw his hands in the air emphasizing his tantrum.

And that was when Yoongi noticed it.

A vine of pink ivy, engraved skillfully along the rosy cream skin at the man’s hip bone. The tattoo, artfully starting at his adonis’ belt, curling cursively inwards and ending God-knows-where inside his jeans. Enticing sight, really.

And Yoongi would’ve savored it too if he was not all battered for one. And for two; if he did not remember that flower tattoos, in this town, meant only one thing. The man, although short and a little on the soft-edged side; with pastel pink hair and lips that were arranged in a natural plump pout, was in fact a member of En Flor.

En Flor! The famiglia with the strongest bond amongst their peers. En Flor! The famiglia with the harshest torments amongst their wrong-doers. The gang that had indeed burned their offenders alive, buried their offenders alive, fed their offenders to wild, hungry hounds alive and even injected acids to people when they were indeed very much alive. He couldn’t run even if he had wanted to and he didn’t want to.

Yoongi had never gone head-first with a gang; that too with designated tattooed members. If the person was tatted, it was sure as any hell that existed if not this world that the man was no less than a Capa. That was something even ‘the lithe’ wasn’t prepared for. His thought-process, however, was cut short as he was hauled aboard the taller more broader and possibly more mentally unstable man and injected with something that made him lose consciousness.

“You say the boss as if Seokjin hyung is some sort of a beast that doesn’t like us.” That was the last he had heard, the name Seokjin rung a bell somewhere in his mind, but with all the ringing going on in his ears, his cranium his whole fucking system, it was hard to pinpoint the significance it held.