Author: Rei and Chris
Tara had parked her Volvo in her usual spot early on the cold Gotham morning before the ball. She had, of course, been thinking furiously, as she had every day since hearing Faith's conversation with Angel, over the whole Angel wanting Willow dead issue. Ok, so Tara regularly robbed the rich guys of Gotham as Catwoman, but murder was something else, also everyone, Tara included, liked Willow, she had always been good to her staff, she wasn't like all the other egotistical snobs that ran all of Gotham's big businesses. That and... well, she was kind of cute.
As Tara walked into the cleaning office to look at the rota, her face crinkled with disgust as she found that she had the men's bathroom to clean that particular morning, never nice. Tara had sighed inwardly and cursed Rosy under her breath as she had collected the cleaning materials.
Sighing once more as she had reached the bathroom door, she knocked on it before opening it a touch, "A-anyone in?" Hearing no reply, Tara had pushed the door open fully for a moment before walking in, cursing as the door slid free of her mop and bucket and closed itself. Tara had put her hand near the door when she had heard a voice on one side of the cubicle.
"It's nothing, just one of the cleaning skivvies, sounds like she left though, must have forgot her bucket." Tara had frowned at the mocking lilt in Warren Mears' voice. "Anyway, how go preparations?" Tara scarcely dared to breathe as she had eavesdropped in on this little conversation. "I don't care if she doesn't want to do it, she's your contact, put pressure on her, if she won't do it for the extortionate amount of money that I am giving you, then surely you have something else over her, no?" There was a slight pause before, "Yeah, I know you can't do it yourself, you burn easily," Warren had almost sneered this out, "Ok, call her soon as we stop speaking, I know that Willow is going to be overseeing preparations for that ball of hers, she'll most likely be outside the Gotham Community Centre some point throughout the day. Oh, and Angel? Do sleep well."
Tara had almost choked as she had heard this, thinking quickly, she opened the door and moved to the other side of it, "Anyone in?"
Warren's voice had come out sharply at her, "Yeah, so stay the fuck out, skiv."
Tara had fumed inwardly before shutting the door, two minutes or so later, the door had opened and Warren had come out, a sneer on his face, Tara had blushed, "I-I'm s-sorry for d-disturbing you." She had stuttered as she had placed the bucket near the door to keep it open.
"Yeah, and so you should be." Warren had smirked as his foot had moved near the bucket and tipped it over, spilling water out onto the floor, "Whoops, accident." He had given a cruel laugh as he had walked down the corridor leaving Tara with his mess to clean up... and to add insult to injury, he hadn't flushed the toilet, oh the humanity.
Ring, ring. Ring, ring. Faith had cursed as she had woke up, "I swear, T, if this is you waking me up just cos you have to be up at the ass-crack of dawn..." despite her sleepy brain telling her to do otherwise, Faith had willed her hand to move towards the phone and pick it up, "Faith here, this early in the morning, it better be good."
"Hey Faith, you thought about our little... proposal."
Faith had reared up at this, "Fuckin' A, I told ya, I don't care how much money you throw at me, I aint gonna do it."
Faith had heard Angel's 'sigh' on the other end of the line, "I'm afraid, my dear, that you do not have all too much choice in the matter. You see, and I didn't want to do this, I know that you wouldn't want anything to happen to Tara, right? I wonder if the Gotham Police Department would like to know the identity of Catwoman."
"You wouldn't fuckin' dare. Besides, who would believe anything that comes out of your mouth? I'm betting that you're above T on Gotham PD's shit list."
"That may well be, Faith, but you see, they do follow up anonymous tipoffs, they especially would if they were told the location of one $200,000 F shaped diamond necklace and a picture I just happen to have of Tara slipping into that marvellous leather one-piece."
It had taken Faith a moment to comprehend this, "A fuckin' picture? You are one sick freak, A." Cornered, Faith had sighed, "Ok, you better not hurt Tara, I swear, cos if you do, I will burn your undead ass, you got that?"
Faith could almost hear Angel's smirk, "Suuuure. Oh, and seeing as I knew that you would do this, I took the liberty of slipping a little gun into one of the drawers near your bed while you answered the call of nature last time I was here, trust me, this little baby won't make a sound, I wouldn't want my pet assassin caught now, would I?"
"You went into one of my underwear drawers?"
"The top one. Ms Rosenberg will be outside the Gotham Community Centre some time during the day. Now, I must get to sleep. Buh-bye now."
Faith had slammed the phone down and shook in bed for a moment before opening her top draw and rifled through various assortments of G-strings and panties, shuddering at the thought of Angel going through them, before feeling something metal at the bottom of the drawer, she had pulled it out, taking in the gun. She flipped open the ammo section of the gun and looked in to see six cartridges. "Damn it, A, why me?"
Willow had been in full-on stress mode as she had seen to the arrangements for the ball, Xander could not help but smirk at her as she ran around, checking decorations, food and other bits and bobs. "Ok, all the balloons are up, the banner, hey, what about the food? Is it all on the right side of expiry dates, because I don't want half of Gotham sick in the morning, no sir. That's a thought, is there enough or is there too much? Too much can be just as bad as not enough, wasteful..."
This is where Xander had decided to step in, "Ok, Will, do me a favour and breathe. The food is all fresh, I made sure of it myself, and hey, unless I'm suddenly not invited, I'm sure that most of the food will go also."
"What about the drinks and the punch and..."
"That little thing we do, when our chests move in and out, that's what I meant by breathing," Xander had smiled, "tell ya what, you go out, get some air, and I'll sort everything else out, ok? You got a list? Come on, I know you have a list."
Willow had smiled and given Xander a quiet laugh, "Yes, colour coded, like the ones I have done since second grade."
"First grade, I think you mean. Ok, now go out and get some air, I mean it."
Willow had grinned and given her longtime best friend a mock salute, proving that there are indeed Billionaires out there with a sense of humour, "Yes, sir." Willow had handed Xander her list and grinned at his light-hearted banter with the other staff as he took to getting everything organised.
Faith sighed as she waited in an alley opposite the Gotham Community Centre. Though she was pretty well hidden in the dark shadows, she had been nervous when Tara had walked out of the building an hour ago and her blue eyes had seemingly taken in the alley as she had headed towards her Volvo. Faith had left a note at home telling her that she was just out for a couple hours and that she'd be back later to get ready for the party. Faith sighed when she had written that, like there was going to be one now.
Her body had tensed as she had seen Willow walk out from the front door. Shakily, Faith raised the gun and clicked off the safety. She cocked the gun with a trembling finger and prepared to pull the trigger.