Shattered Innocence

by Tragedy88

Disclaimers: These are my characters, all mine, even if they bear a striking resemblance to a certain warrior and bard. Sorry MCA/Universal you should know by now that I can't resist. But, so ya know, in no way do I make money from this. It's just my own sick, twisted fun.

Sex/Violence: Lots. More then the usual eps of Xena, and more then my usual stories. This is a tough city, a tough neighborhood where just about anything does and will happen. This story depicts love between two members of the same sex, so if this is illegal or offensive, read elsewhere. This story also depicts an act of rape, but no graphic sex scenes. Sorry folks, just not my style.

Anything else? Don't know about that yet. Guess this story has an R rating because of the violence and potty mouth language. Um, that'd be all now. Go ahead and read. Delve into my twisted mind, if you dare! :)

Feedback most welcome at

Chapter Eight

Flight or Fight

Shane's room was far from quiet, bathed in the eerie Neon glow of street lights and beer signs. A baby was crying upstairs, someone was thumping something down the stairs and someone was yelling. Through the open window came the sound of barking dogs, cars, squealing tires and the occasional police siren.

Pale blue eyes regarded the peeling ceiling. She traced the lines of a water leak from one end of the room to the next.

A headache pounded across her temples. Shane never got headaches. She tossed and turned on the double bed, unable to sleep.

She rolled onto her stomach and buried her head under the pillow to drown out the lights and noises. It didn't help.

Get up and do something... dad sure as hell won't notice. Shane jumped up from the bed, tossing the pillow onto the floor as she went. Grabbing her jeans and boots she tossed them on and headed out of her room and out of the apartment.

As she walked down the dilapidated stairs and through the warped front door the thought came to her that she had no idea where she was going.

I could gather the posse, half of them are probably already out partying.... But she realized that she didn't want to see any of them right now. Undecided, she sat on the Harley, letting the city surround her.

Shane lit a cigarette and watched the hazy smoke drift up towards the streetlight as someone rushed past on a skateboard, jumping over the curb and two boys followed, laughing. Cars rushed past, even at this late hour.

Italian, Greek, Irish, BBQ... mingled through the neighborhoods, fast food and homecooked. A whiff of garbage and sewage came and left. Shane wrinkled her nose then straightened her leather jacket and revved the Harley to life.

She tossed the cigarette into the litter on the side of the street and took off, pushing the bike to thirty, then forty and fifty as she roared down the empty alleys and parking lots she'd known since childhood. She could travel these places blindfolded.

After speeding through the bank parking lot she shot down a main avenue, through two red lights and down another back alley to the 'Stop n Shop.'

Pent up energy and adrenaline coursing through her body Shane pushed open the door. The little bell jingled, singling her arrival. The Puerto Rican boy glanced up from behind the counter then went back to reading his Superman comic.

It hasn't changed much, Shane thought numbly as she took in the store. A new rotating metal shelf held postcards. A sign behind the register said; "No more then 50 dollars cash in the register. Safety Drop Box." A sign below it toted a new security system. The only other thing different was the boy behind the counter.

The night Charley died that stupid stubborn old man had been sitting in the boy's place.

"Put your hands where I can see them! Don't even make me think you want to touch that fucking alarm under the counter," Jynx hissed loudly and waved her pistol wildly at the old man's head.

Shane stood off to Jynx's right side and a little behind her, bags for the money in her hands.

"Take the money out of the cash register," Jynx instructed the old man and Shane stepped forward to gather it up.

"No," the old man's hands dipped beneath the counter top. "Get the fuck out of my store, you punks!"

"Don't you dare!" Jynx screamed, firing a shot off behind the man's head and into the plaster wall.

He ducked beneath the counter and rose up with a sawed off shotgun in his hands. His finger shook on the trigger.

"Goddamn, put that thing down," Jynx waved the pistol in his face, "before I kill you."

"Jynx," Shane hissed, "let's just get the hell out of here." Out of the corner of her eye she could see Jynx's wild eyes and Cadence, Molly, Tish and Casey all stepping back, heading toward the exit.

"No, we came here for a reason. And I want the fucking money." She stared directly at Shane, her glance leaving the old man for just a split second.

It was all the time he needed.

Shane heard the click and reacted instinctively, tossing her hand up and knocking the sawed off barrel up into the ceiling. The recoil sent the old man staggering a step backward, but she didn't loose her grip.

Jynx was cursing. Molly was screaming to 'just get the hell out before the police came' and the old man was struggling to aim the gun at Shane.

The second shot buzzed past her ear. Shane gave a sharp cry and ripped the gun from the old man's hands. "Case," she ordered as she trained the shotgun between the old man's eyes, "get the money. Cadence, stop the camera and get the surveillance tape." For a second no one moved or breathed. "Now!"

Casey hurried behind the counter and stuffed the bills into the brown paper bag while Cadence threw open the door to the little upstairs security room and ripped the tape out of the recorder.

"Don't move," Shane jabbed the shotgun against the man's forehead. "Hurry up, Case, we haven't got all week."

"Got it!" Cadence cried as she raced back down the stairs and waved the tape in the air. Casey finished with the register and came back around the corner.

"All right, let's go," Jynx finally tried to re-establish command of her posse.

Shane nodded silently and took a step back.

"Stupid punks!" The old man grabbed the barrel of the shotgun.

Shane's finger was stiff around the trigger and the sudden, jerking movement jammed the trigger back. The shotgun went off and Shane staggered backward under the force of the impact. The old man's blood splattered her face and the front of her T-shirt. Shards of bone and gray matter dripped down her jaw.

In a horrified haze Shane turned to the rest of the posse, meeting their shocked gaze. Oh God, oh God, oh God... raced through her mind. The cops... A noise startled her and she turned, swiveling the shotgun around automatically.

Through a bloody veil of shock she pulled the trigger, again.


The scene played itself out like a mini movie, right there beside the counter of the 'Stop N Shop.' And like a commercial the boy interrupted.

"Hey, lady, you all right?"

Shane turned blindly, silent tears coursing down her suddenly pale cheeks. All right? Sure, I'm all right. I killed my brother... I'm just fine. A sob stuck painfully in her throat. "I killed him," she whispered hoarsely.


Pain so intense that it robbed Shane of breath she turned quickly and raced out of the store as if the hounds of hell were chasing her, trying to claim her darkened soul.

In the parking lot Shane jumped on the motorcycle and took off. As she roared down the streets, tears ripping from her eyes she struggled to see, to understand.

Why? Why? Why?

No answers came as she led the bike up onto the freeway. Crisp, spring air, turned into tornado force by the speed of the bike, whipped her dark hair around her face in a torrent of darkness that matched her thoughts. What would happen if I just kept riding? If I laid the bike down on the asphalt? If I took it to the bridge...

Tony's innocent face flashed before her eyes, causing the bike to swerve dangerously. For some reason those green eyes begged her to slow down and make it back in one piece.

Shane let up on the gas and took the next exit off the freeway and back into the city of perpetual night.

Chapter Nine
Return to Main Page