Another night in Metro City. It always surprised Cody just how little the city had changed in his absence. People were still doing whatever they wanted wherever they wanted; if anything, things had gotten worse since he had come back and taken up the reins as Mayor from old man Haggar.
It was tough for Cody to keep his cool driving around the streets sometimes. Rather than putting crooks in their place with a good ol’ knuckle sandwich – heavy on the ketchup – Cody simply had to pretend that he didn’t see anything. It might have been okay for Haggar to do that kind of thing, but as a reformed criminal, Cody’s ratings would tank if he was seen beating up his constituents. But damn, did he want to.
Cody knew he had to do something to clean up Metro City but going through the hoops and bureaucracy of doing it from his mayoral position was tiresome and slow. He needed to think back to his time in prison. To the people he met there and the things that they had mentioned. He knew that there were people in the underworld willing to work to clean things up if the price was right and if the police could be convinced to look the other way.
It was that group of bottom-feeders that he hoped to convince tonight as he pulled into the bayside parking lot and climbed out of his car. The streetlights here were almost all broken, but the only lights Cody needed were the light from the garage he slowly walked towards and the neon lights above it. “Abigail’s Scrap Metal,” though there were a few letters out on it. A hulking giant of a man stood inside, working on an equally hulking car. Cody’s Oxfords clacked against the dirty cement as he walked to the doorway, slipped his hands in his pockets and gave a shout to the man he had kicked to the curb so many times all those years ago. “Hey!” Abigail turned from his work to see Cody standing there. “You want a job?”
“You again?! Why can’t you just leave me alone!?” Abigail tossed his wrenches down and put his hands up, ready to fight off the new mayor for the second time this week.
Cody put his hands in the air and spoke once more. “I’m not here for trouble, Abigail. I was hoping that we could work together. Something that’s good for both of us.” Cody reached into his vest pocket and pulled out a stack of bills, holding them out to Abigail. “Whether or not you agree, this money’s yours. To try to make up for everything I’ve put you through.”
A couple more familiar faces popped out from one of the garage’s back rooms, though Cody had a hard time putting names to faces. These old Mad Gear members all looked exactly the goddamn same. One of them cried out “Boss! What’s going on? Did you bust up the engine again?” This goon’s eyes landed on Cody and he put his fists up, as well. “What’re you doing here? We left Mad Gear years ago! We’ve done nothing wrong since then!”
Again, Cody held up the bills and looked to each of the four former gang members in the room with him. “I’m not here for a fight. I want to talk business and figured that you were all experts in the field I was looking into. I need enforcers on the street. People willing to do things that I can’t have my force doing without the government asking questions and things I can’t do in my new position. That’s why I need you guys to help me out.”
Abigail walked up to Cody, towering over him and taking the money between his thick, greasy thumb and forefinger. “You think this is enough for what you done?” Abigail landed a sucker punch into Cody’s stomach, forcing the mayor to double over and fall to his knees, breathless. “You can’t get even with me. You beat me up for no reason! You keep me from working on my vroom-vrooms! I hate you!”
Catching his breath and craning his neck to look the giant in front of him in the eye, Cody replied, “I know that I’ve messed with you a lot in the past, but once this is all over and Metro City is properly safe, I swear I’ll leave you alone to work on your cars forever. And you’ll make a lot of money. You’ll even be able to get a bigger garage in a better part of the city. Anything you want I’ll do my best to make happen. I just need you to help me keep this city safe.”
The goon that had taken the most concern in Abigail held walked up to Cody, held out a hand to him, and helped him to his feet. “Alright, Mr. Mayor. We’re listening.”