Prelude to The Shredder Wars — Snippet 2

April 9, 2009, 7:40 p.m

Raquel Silva loved Shakepeare like you wouldn’t believe.  Loved him since college, where the drama students who would put radically different versions of Othello every year taught her the power of stories.  Had that really been almost thirty years ago?

In any case, when she first begun making waves in the competitive fighting circuit and was told that she literally needed to make a name for herself, there was no question what that name would be.  Granted, it had initially been a pain in the ass to continuously have to explain that her alias didn’t actually refer to the character who actually went by that name but to her husband, but the king’s name on its own just didn’t sound dramatic enough for the venue.  Eventually though, people started getting it–Lady Macbeth: No man of woman born could beat her.

Then came The Society.  While she didn’t much care for its endgame—whatever that was—she was extremely grateful for the perks that came with associating with them.  Not only had their health plan allowed her to stay in the game for far longer than she would have been able to otherwise, it allowed her to send both of her kids to college even after she was no longer making money in the circuit.  Now she made the most out of semi-retirement in Brazil, where she lived with, and took care of, her parents.

The Hotel Cabal was not Brazil, nor was it the sort of hotel she would frequent, given a choice.  It was owned by The Illuminati, and served as part hideaway, part torture chamber.  Care was advised when traversing the hotel; legend was it that one of its administrators, Mace Malone, once lost his way and was never seen again.  This was on Raquel’s mind as she led Takeshi Yoshihama—Master Khan—through the building’s beige halls of drabness.

“You know, there’s no need for you to be so tense,” she told her prisoner. “We seriously don’t plan on killing you.”

“You are Illuminati.  Killing me is among the least you could do to me.”

“Yeah, you’re right.  Still, why make yourself miserable beforehand?”  This got no answer, which wasn’t particularly unexpected.  From everything she’d heard about the Foot’s ninja, they tended to be annoyingly disciplined.  Khan, in particular, seemed like the kind of person who would hide in a closet when not on a mission.  Not at all the kind of person she liked working with, although that didn’t mean she wouldn’t—she too could be disciplined.

After three minutes of some very circuitous walking, the two martial artists arrived at their destination, a door marked 532, a designation that might have been helpful if it hadn’t been preceded by a dozen doors also marked 532.  At the other side was David Xanatos, the man tasked with selling Khan on the idea of betraying the people he had dedicated his life to.



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