Chinatown Takedown

From the mind of Steven Bridges

The Sleepy Dragon resturant contains a private dining room used exclusivly for it's more discreet guests. The large room takes up the entire fourth floor, it walls adorned with portraits of Asain gardens. Long, red silk drapes hang lazily from the ceiling all around the room. Each one woven with a golden tapestry of fearsome Chinese dragons. In the middle of the room sits a traditional Chinese table that rests on a large Persian style rug, a mere foot from the floor. The table is decortaed with a assortment of Chinese food. Wicker baskets holding steaming Dim Sum. Ceramic bowls filled with spicy Ramen noodles. Oval plates with Marinated Crab on a Stick. The smell of the food has a strong entoxicating aura and in the center of the table, incense candles burned with a mixed scent of aniseed and old wine that seemed almost euphoric.

A young asian man dressed in a pristine white suit walks into the room and is greeted by the sinister looking eyes of the five men assembled around the far end of the rectangular table. A moment ago they had been talking and laughing with a comfortable familairity, but had now fallen silent the second the young man entered. The soft, rythmic sounds of music being played on a Japanese Shamisen somewhere behind the drapes did little to ease the shaking hands of the young man. He sat down at the end of the long table and placed a large metallic grey Samsonite case on the table in front of him.

Outside the resturant, the hustling nightlife of Chinatown was in full effect. People lined the streets basking in the glow of hundreds of neon lights. Moving from club to club, enjoying the range of street performers earning their pay with a variety of acrobatic acts. Across the street, in a dark, forboding room of a run down apartment building. A mysterious man sits in the shadows looking directly across to fourth floor of the Sleepy Dragon. The glowing red embers of his cigerette revealing a long barrel sniper rifle leaning up against his shoulder.

The man dressed in white opens the Samsonite case, revealing it contents. The piles of money within the case immediatly ignite the interest from four of the men at the table. The fifth man however, bald headed, well aged and dressed in a black kimono, did not react. He sat opposite the young man at the other end of the table, glanced at the case and then shook his head, dissapprovingly.

Suddenly, the drapes blew inwards and the young man winced backward, choking harsly. He brought his hand to his neck and gripped it tight. A red viscious liquid began to pool down from his hand, staining his ghost white suit. He barely managed to get to his feet before falling lifelessly onto the table.

The bald headed man said simply, "Your offer for protection, has been denied". .