Rough Negotiations

July 31, 2015:

In New Jersey, a drug dealer overseeing some of the 100's newly won territory receives a special package and a warning from one of the gang's enforcers.

Meanwhile, in Mexico, one of the 100's narcotics production overseers cuts a deal to replace a week's worth of mysteriously ruined product with something new.

New Jersey; Los Mochis, Mexico

Characters

NPCs: Bullseye

Mentions:

Plot:

Mood Music: [*\# None.]


Fade In…

NEW JERSEY

Michael doesn't like it when Chester does collections. Today is only his second time dealing with the man in as many weeks, but Michael is sure he'd be happier never seeing him again.

The first time, Chester showed him a picture of what he claimed was the last person to screw up - or with - a package.

Michael will probably never be able to look at a pair of chopsticks again. He hasn't even thought of eating Chinese since then.

"Looks like you're doin' good, getting all this new territory running right," Chester remarks while nudging a wad of bills back into their envelope with an unseemly grin. Michael almost thinks he detects a hint of disappointment in the other man's voice; he tries to put it out of his mind. They're in the dealer's living room, with Chester lounging on the sofa with a foot up on an old coffee table and Michael hovering near a recliner and trying not to white-knuckle it as he watches Chesteer. "Man upstairs is gonna be reaaaaal pleased."

Michael lets out a quick, relieved burst of air. A moment later, he starts edging around the recliner to ease into a seat.

"Which's why I'm giving lucky li'l you a bonus," Chester continues just as Michael starts to get settled. Before the dealer can react, Chester is reaching into his trenchcoat to retrieve a brown paper-wrapped package and toss it to him. "Strictly on the Q-T, of course."

As soon as the brown package lands in his lap, Michael's surprised expression flicks from it to Chester— just in time to see a more familiar ziploc nearly bursting at the seams with colorful little balloons of black tar. The dealer stares down into his lap for a long, silent stretch of seconds before finally leveling a bewildered expression on Chester. "I can't just— " He scoffs a little, incredulous. "You want me to keep it quiet, so— is this not— " He swallows, thinks of the pictures, and looks down again.

"Where'd this…" He picks at a corner of the brown paper, revealing a couple vials of off-white pebbles shot through with dull blue veins. "What's this— I— if I get caught pushing some other package— "

"Ooh, yeah." Chester's grin slips into a wince and he sinks back against the sofa. "Right, that's true. Mr. Martinez doesn't really play around, does he? Yeah… hey!" The grin returns as he perks and reaches into his coat again. "That reminds me: got some more of those candids, like last time. You wanna see?" He comes up with a phone, which he extends towards Michael.

Who recoils against his recliner with his breath held and his eyes turned away. Unfortunately, he can't quite pull his gaze far enough: Chester manages to hold the phone out at just the right angle to make the screen and its lurid contents visible.

Michael catches it out of the corner of his eyes, freezes up, then vomits all over his carpet. Not only is that not what playing cards are for, it shouldn't even be possible.

"See, here's the thing," Chester continues, entirely unconcerned with the retching, "Yeah, sure, the boss'd be mad— if he caught you. But that just means you need to be clever, see? Maybe you get someone new to move the stuff for you. Give out some freebies, get the junkies hooked— aah, what am I, gonna tell you how to do your job?" He gives a brisk, dismissive wave with his other hand. "Point is: you can avoid getting caught, you can avoid the big guy finding out about any of this; you say no to me, though, and, well. Guess I'll have found myself another subject, right?"

Michael shudders, lifts his eyes - avoids the screen - and focuses on Chester's face. Chester obligingly refrains from pulling the phone along to remain in his line of sight. "I— " he stammers. "— fine. I'll— I'll sell this— " He peels back a little more of the paper, squinting at the vials. "— this— "

"'Rough'," Chester supplies while killing his phone screen and standing. "Pleasure doin' business witcha." He doesn't stick around to shake hands, he just leaves Michael to ponder his risky new windfall; places to be.

As he heads for his rental car, he reaches into his jacket again, retrieving a notepad, a pen, and a different, older model phone. With the pen, he crosses the address he's leaving off of what is a rather lengthy list of New York and New Jersey locations. When he's done, he opens the car, tosses the pad inside, and dials.

"Tell the fat man that I'm wrappin' up in Jersey and ask 'im if he wants me anywhere else, wouldja?" He nudges his baseball cap up to scratch his bald head, revealing concentric circles tattoed on his brow. "It's been a week, I'm gettin' a little restless over here. Buncha pussies actin' like they've never seen a body before, Jesus Christ."

"There, ah, won't be any need for that," the nasally voice on the other end assures.

SOME TIME AGO
LOS MOCHIS, MEXICO

"Feast your eyes, gentlemen," Corichi - AKA Dmitri Smerdyakov, AKA The Chameleon - says while gingerly handing over an open suitcase full of neatly arranged ziploc stuffed with vials of off-white pebbles shot through with dull blue veins. "The answer to your current supply shortfall."

Flanked by three armed men, Rodrigo Peron, overseer of the 100's heroin production in the Sinaloa region stares through Corichi for a solid four or five seconds before finally taking the offering. The loss of nearly eighty percent of the week's product is not a topic he's fond of discussing. The chemist responsible for diluting it into worthlessness has already been censured despite (predictable) pleas that he was elsewhere, but it's a sore subject all the same. It's a matter of principle.

"We have a deal," Rodrigo murmurs, studying the strangely colorful rocks, "Can you gather the rest of your product in two hours? The exchange will take place at…"

NEW JERSEY

"There are other arrangements in place. They should be bearing fruit. Soon."

"Great," Bullseye groans while pulling away. "Guess I'll see if the other guy needs anything."

"Just, um, remember— "

"Yeah, yeah, let you know if I hear anything about you guys, no shit. Just let 'im know I'm on the job."

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