(Welcome to the fifth official face-off of Sirens of the LAMBs! If you have not done so already, please read the previous fights and cast your vote! Remember to base it on the narratives and not just a bias!)
By Nayana Anthony from The Center Seat.
The elegant Asian woman in the white kimono glides into the teahouse. After delicately removing her slippers, she lowers herself to the floor beside a table.
The staff at this teahouse knows O-Ren Ishii well; although soft-spoken, she is not a woman to be trifled with. Her tea is brought immediately.
Ever alert, O-Ren scans her surroundings, though she never seems to take her eyes from the cup in front of her. She savors her privacy, which is why she has chosen this teahouse every morning for the past several years. It is nondescript, off the beaten path… few outsiders know of this place.
Oh, no. She sighs almost imperceptibly. An American. How did she find this place? O-Ren surveys the slight girl in the red hooded sweatshirt. Although American blood flows through
O-Ren’s own veins, she views American tourists with disdain. They tend to be so loud and ignorant… but this one is fairly quiet. Even so, it’s only a matter of time before more start coming. Wait a second–is she watching me? O-Ren is startled when she realizes that the young girl has been fixing her with a cold stare since she first noticed her. Do I know this girl? O-Ren reaches for her sword, but she is too late–colors swim before her eyes, and the world goes black.
As O-Ren slides uneasily into consciousness, the fluorescent light suspended over her body is blinding. She can’t really see… everything is blurry… but something is wrong. Her kimono– where is it? She is naked! She struggles to move, but she is bound tightly. She is laying on a hard, smooth surface, and she can feel beads of sweat starting to trickle down her naked back. A gentle giggle from across the room sends a chill through O-Ren.
“Oh, please. Do try to get away. You’ll just make my knots tighter.”
O-Ren still can’t see clearly, but she can make out a red shape several feet away. The girl in the red hooded sweatshirt!
“What do you want? Do you know who I am?”
Another giggle…”Of course I know, O-Ren. And I know people usually tremble in fear around you. They know you can take their head off in under a second if they dare to cross you. Well… you can if you’ve got this.”
Hayley Stark draws the sword slowly from its sheath and admires it under the overhead light. It is a true Hattori Hanzō, she realizes. She’s heard of the Japanese sword maker’s masterpieces, of course, but she has never seen one in person. To face a Hanzō sword is to face the end of one’s own life — Hayley knows this, which is why she could never allow the situation to get that far. Her only chance of defeating the great O-Ren Ishii was not to be identified as an enemy, until it was too late.
But now it is too late… for O-Ren. The lithe, deadly martial artist had been ensnared by her own complacency. Now, bound naked to the conference table in her own boardroom, with no sword, no henchmen, no Crazy 88, O-Ren’s battle is over. But Hayley’s fun is just beginning.
“Here’s the deal, honey,” Hayley says conversationally, “It’s In about ten or fifteen minutes, the main power players in the
O-Ren sighs, and closes her eyes. “He insulted my heritage. He deserved to die.”
“A lot of people deserve to die, O-Ren. Including you. But there are things worse than death aren’t there?” Hayley’s mouth curves into a sly grin. “Now what if I just left you here, tied to the table, naked. How do you think that would play out, sweetie?”
O-Ren’s eyes flew open. “You cannot do that! I would rather die. Please, no, you can’t!”
Hayley laughs. “Is this really the great O-Ren Ishii? I don’t really think of you as someone who begs. Kinda disappointing, actually.”
“What did I ever do to you? I don’t even know who you are!”
“What did you do to me?” scoffs Hayley, “You’ve done plenty. But this isn’t about me. Do you, or don’t you, want me to leave you here?”
“No, please don’t! I’d rather die!”
“Alrighty then.” With one deft motion, O-Ren’s sword finds its sheath… straight through its owner’s abdomen.
Pleasant music played over the loud speaker as O-Ren Ishii looked for some stylish flip-flops in the shoe section. She wanted something to match her latest Kimono. It was a little pricey, so she was looking for a steal on the flip-flops. And of course she came to Target. So the question was, should she go simple and elegant or something with a little bling? Out of the corner of her eye, she saw someone with a red jacket on. Thinking it was a Target employee, she approached the woman to get a quick opinion. Only it wasn’t a Target employee; it was Hayley Stark, her sworn enemy at the time. O-Ren’s niece’s boyfriend had run into Hayley at a high school party and Hayley was talking shit about O-Ren’s Japanese/Chinese/American heritage and saying that O-Ren was not fit to be the big boss of the Tokyo Yakuza. Needless to say O-Ren added her to the assassination list right then and there. Unfortunately, the assassination list gets quite long this time of year and so Hayley was allowed to live a little longer than O-Ren would have liked. But what luck was this? A casual kill on a Saturday afternoon right here in Target. There would have to be no planning. No traveling. No overnights sleeping on uncomfortable beds in lousy motels while she waited for just the right time to kill her. This was perfect.
O-Ren quickly dropped her flip-flops and reached for her side where her Hanzo Sword always is. But she remembered that Target has a strict No Hanzo Sword Policy which, by the way, is a bunch of crap. So she had to check it at the front counter. And now here she was. Face to face with this little shit who honestly was such an unworthy opponent that it was an insult to O-Ren that she would even have to lift a finger to kill her. This wasn’t even a job worthy of her weakest Crazy 88 (that one guy with the slight limp and the inner-ear infection that made him fall all the time). But he was a brother of a friend and she owed him and well, let’s just say it’s a long story and not worth going into here.
Hayley saw the red hate in O-Ren’s eyes and reacted a bit quicker than O-Ren had thought she would. Hayley swung her brand-new-not-yet-ready-for-school backpack at O-Ren and swiped her across the face. It was empty so it was not so much a weapon as a diversion while Hayley ran away into the men’s clothing section where she could get lost among a
O-Ren shot her hand through the hanging pants display and struck Hayley in the neck. Hayley fell out of the clothes grasping for air and struggling to get to her feet, but O-Ren was already there. Picking her up by her little red hood and dragging her along the floor. Hayley managed to choke out a couple of sorrys. But the sorry bus had already left a long time ago. O-Ren grabbed a woman’s top off the sale rack as she continued to drag Hayley towards the snacking section of Target. By now, O-Ren’s actions had spooked some customers and the store was beginning to clear. At the snacking section. O-Ren ordered the oldest hotdog they had on the turning grill and the largest Icy cup they could find. Hayley sat at a table still trying to breathe while O-Ren presented her with the shriveled hot dog, no mustard or ketchup, and the large Blue Cherry Icy. And then she revealed a god-awful woman’s top to Hayley. I mean one of those that you can’t believe someone thought was a good design. It was frilly and lime green with some purple and shit it was terrible. Seriously, someone should have been fired for designing this turd. So she made Hayley wear it while eating that nasty hot dog and O-Ren took pictures. She told Hayley that she was going to post them on her Facebook page and then she was going to discover who all of Hayley’s friends were and then she was going to invite all of Hayleys friends to be her friends so that everyone would see the photos of Hayley eating this nasty-ass, shriveled up, sure-to-be-crawling-with-e-coli hotdog while wearing a top that looked like a drunk clown threw up on her. The cruelty was unbearable.
Then O-Ren told her to drink the large Icy as fast as she could. This surely would give Hayley one heck of a headache. But Hayley had regained her breath and her strength and she threw the drink in O-Ren’s face and ran past the checker aisles and into the house-cleaning section. O-Ren welcomed the chase. Was hoping for it, in fact. She followed Hayley as she ducked into one of the aisles. O-Ren turned into the aisle and was immediately sprayed in the face with Windex. The burning was bad, but O-Ren did not need her eyes to kill. She did a round house upside of Hayley’s face and pushed her into some cleaning supplies. O-Ren then took her by the hood again and dragged her to the cosmetic section. Through her stinging eyes, she was able to find a bottle of peroxide which she poured all over Hayley’s hair turning her from a smart and witty brunette to a dumb bleach blonde instantly. And then she made Hayley stand up and grab a bottle of Massengale and act like she was really excited to get it, while O-Ren snapped some more photos for her Facebook page. Her torment knows no boundaries.
Hayley was a complete mess by now, but O-Ren was not even close to finishing her. She took her to the electronics’ section and challenged her to a game of Madden Football. She let Hayley play as the New England Patriots while O-Ren chose the Miami Dolphins and even with her bad eyes and one of the shittiest teams in the history of football, she still schooled her . It was an embarrassing loss. An unforgivable loss really. And definitely worth some photos for the Facebook page.
O-Ren again pulled Hayley by the hood, past the music selection, and into the candy section where she made Hayley eat an entire bag of those nasty marshmallow Peeps that they sell every year for Easter. All that super-sweet sugar coating that grits in-between your teeth and they say its marshmallows but seriously who really knows what that shit is made of and what it does to your insides and it was sure to give Hayley one hell of a zit right in the middle of her forehead.
Time was of the essence. O-Ren’s casual kill was taking a bit longer than she had anticipated, so she dragged Hayley to the recreation section with all the bats and mitts and soccer and footballs. O-Ren grabbed a baseball and bat and had Hayley swing while O-Ren pitched to her. But every pitch was a beam right in the back because O-Ren said that Hayley was crowding the plate and she was asking for it, even though Hayley said that that wasn’t true and that there wasn’t even a plate to crowd and O-Ren was doing that on purpose. But O-Ren declared her innocence and Hayley was just mad because now she was a food-poisoned bad dresser Massengale loving dumb blond who got her ass handed to her by the worst football team in America which was being controlled by someone with Windex in their eyes and holy shit I can’t believe you ate those Peeps because those things are nasty and by the way you suck at baseball.
This was too much for Hayley. She collapsed to her knees, her steely armor once used to torture grown men to kill themselves now completely gone in only a matter of minutes. Her fast-talking mouth was no longer useful as it only let out loud, uncontrollable sobs. It was sad really. O-Ren stood over her in pity as Hayley begged to be put out of her misery. A chore in which O-Ren was happy to carry out. She picked up the bat and held it high above her head. It was not sharp like her Hanzo and it was not swift, but it would certainly do the job. Just as O-Ren was ready to bring down the bat, a janitor came around the corner. O-Ren knew that if she carried through with her swing, there would be brain and blood everywhere and that janitor would have to work really late cleaning up all that debris and O-Ren was cruel, but not that cruel. So instead she brought Hayley to her feet and she performed the five point palm-exploding heart technique as taught to her by Pai Mei. Five steps later Hayley Stark was dead and O-Ren had purchased her flip-flops with some bling on them which, by the way, were on sale so that made O-Ren very happy.