“Penny For Your Thoughts, Or A Razor” by Tia Ja’nae

Doubt makes them keep their awkward greetings to themselves. That suits me just fine. I ain’t out here looking for friends.

Damn, I’ve missed the Windy City.  

Chicago ain’t changed a bit in the ten years I’ve been gone. Arabs still own most of the businesses in black neighborhoods, making money off the colored folks being in a food desert with their gas stations, fried food shacks and corner stores. Koreans still peddling overpriced Indian weave to the nappy headed heifers that won’t grow their own hair. Hookers, junkies, and cops are littered in the middle still fighting for their little piece of turf.

Far south side streets may have changed, sure. Eyes and ears out here still carrying the same familiar but nameless faces occupying the gutter. Some act like they recognize me in between their drunken amnesia. Doubt makes them keep their awkward greetings to themselves. That suits me just fine. I ain’t out here looking for friends. Last thing I need is their cold stares of sympathetic pity peeping me on the track with the other bitches in heat.

First order of business is to get down to business finding a mack that suits my needs. Of course that is easier said than done. Corners and crosswalks are a war zone. Trans broads have run real pussy damn near out of style swallowing and gobbling dick for two dollars a pop. Now bad hoes can’t compete with a nickel and dime pay scale. I ain’t surprised most macks gave up territory and flipped into the minivan game.

Bitches on the clock in backseats are apparently the lick now.

Talk about a bad business plan; macks are stomping in the street hunting for dick harder than their moneymakers do on the track! Fuzz keeps everybody under surveillance since it’s easier to catch them pandering red handed. Add the occupational hazard of beating a client’s ass for stiffing on the bill and the total ain’t worth the jail time for the hassle. The shade of it all they won’t ever get the scene back again, least not how it was. But I have to start somewhere.

A few bottle caps of brown heroin to a few junkies is all it takes to point me in the general direction of the action. Ain’t much left from the good old days of the old circuit. The legendary hole in the walls that showcased a fly mack and his hoe stable are long gone. Taverns lucky enough to still stand catering to itchy fingers with no home training or dirty old veterans doing the most trying to fuck but wanting to pay in coupons and food stamps. Picking is slim for real.

Playing barfly at this cool little after hours spot off 80th and Racine gets me a little leverage. Can’t remember the name of the joint but it’s just what I was looking for. Nothing like an old joint past its prime doubling as a rest haven for older macks one hoe from retirement. They take all kinds, from the bitches on a coffee break to the yamps standing on the verge of being turned out. It’s a good place to blend in the background or be the star of the show.

Flirting with the bartender sucking the life out of a Black Nipple cocktail is still good networking. No square working third shift for chump change will miss out on a chance to discover the next moneymaker for a big time player for a big time tip. According to the street progress report all eyes are on Mercy Black Percy; every cat coming out the woodworking telling lies and flashing money clips got his name in their mouth.

They throwing salt on Mercy Black Percy like he parted Lake Michigan to step on their clout. Disgruntled macks in closed ranks never keep secrets. They’re worse than cackling hens just out of sheer spite. Throw liquor under their belts and it’s easy as hell to get a line on Mercy Black Percy’s rotation. His stable is spread citywide with enough pussy to fill United Center. On a bad night there’s at least two hundred bitches at his disposal running cash in his hand.

As far as his reputation he’s anything but a saint, but I’m not surprised with how much lean green he keeps in circulation. Most macks have unwritten rules for civility to keep the game strong. Not Mercy Black Percy. Stealing bitches in training, calling in police raids, or catching the competition slipping by taking out the competition’s top earners with hot shots definitely has stepped on the toes of his peers.

He’s instilled so much fear into them they gladly wait for their turn to be snuffed out through torture, praying like hell he leaves enough of their remains behind to be identified for a funeral.

Rumor has it he’s one foot into being pushed to the pink caddy.

Bitches tell a different story. Outside of earshot of their mack they whisper Mercy Black Percy’s top hoes live like royalty until they forget their place. Sky’s the limit for those bitches as long as they keep a nice floating stack of cash in the palm of his hand. The minute a bitch outlives her earning potential though, they’re put out to pasture for anybody to graze the leftovers. Those are the lucky ones. He kills the majority of the lot when he wants to put them out of his misery.

Mercy Black Percy loves culling the herd. Motherfucker got a rep getting his rocks off giving bitches hot shots of pure China white and battery acid. The lucky ones get a lifetime of complimentary face lifts when his fists keep rearranging their bone structure. He’s instilled so much fear into them they gladly wait for their turn to be snuffed out through torture, praying like hell he leaves enough of their remains behind to be identified for a funeral.

The shade of it all is that for all his sadistic tendencies Mercy Black Percy is hung up about busting a nut with a bitch. Imagine that. Rumor’s out that any hoe bringing him to the finish line gets rewarded tied up to his custom whipping post and flogged at his leisure for days on end. They say the last bitch was found slashed up like a scarecrow with straw hanging out the crevices. Sounds like a potential mack of the year that can motivate me to take care of business!

Getting to him is easy. Bartenders are my mouthpiece putting the word out I’m either an outlaw ready to choose or a thot in my prime that can be turned out to the life. Enough whispers always find a mack’s curiosity to try new pussy. The possibility of missing out on a new rookie of the year after a good recommendation brings the most stubborn fucker off his high horse to check out the talent personally every fucking time.

Auditions are simple once you find out who the sidekicks are that pull the bitches. Mercy Black Percy has two, a set of short ass twins called Little Poe and Little Joe. Little Poe captures the stung out junkie bitches they can use for flicks and fetish tricks. Little Joe breaks in the virgin once removed types not hip to the game. Since I ain’t put out yet they’re good candidates to give a taste to since they look like they ain’t had no good pussy before.

They push up on me thirsty with hard-ons after watching me a good little while in a two toned cat suit stiletto combo that leaves little room for the holy ghost. Any minister would lose their religion seeing the goods I got, and these jokers too. Entertaining them is good practice and sends a nice message back to their boss man I’m groomed and ready to earn. To test my whorish demeanor they asked me for a threesome.

Killing two dumb ass birds with one stone works every time.

Still, can’t let them think the pussy is easy to get. Those types of bitches get thrown to the sewers to earn by the lowest common denominator. I make them take me to on a date to Lawry’s off Ontario. Big spenders like to brag for enticement and they didn’t disappoint. Both of them flossing bankrolls burning holes in their pocket if they didn’t spend it. I was more than willing to oblige them just to make them feel more entitled to knock off a piece in compensation.

Drinks, appetizers, and entrees easily set them back four hundred on the bill and made a nightcap inevitable. They took me to a spot off Lake Shore Drive I suspect Mercy Black Percy uses for the prospects wet behind the ears. Lots of luxury to the naked eye and uninitiated. Soon as Little Poe closed and locked the door him and Little Joe were on me like two pieces of bread making a sandwich and harder than life in prison without the possibility of parole.

That’s when I drop the bomb auditions aren’t free.

So what, they got me dinner; check the mack handbook. Tricks pay to play or forget getting off today. Any mack hearing that will know I’m a honest hoe that can come back with more to show than a wet ass. Lil Poe was eager to break bread to knock off a piece but Lil Joe threw his ass up on his shoulders and pouted about it. Fucking the taste of dinner out of Lil Poe’s mouth gave Lil Joe enough time to suck his thumb on the sidelines and figure it out.

After his brother busted the third straight nut he begrudgingly paid the price. Five grand is the highest they ever paid for trim in their lives, an obvious point of contention they couldn’t stop rambling about it in their sleep. The nerve, as if they didn’t get more than their money’s worth! A more delicate bitch would be in the emergency room the way they use pussy like a jungle gym. They should feel lucky I didn’t add on gratuity for acting like they never had none before.

Our fling paid me enough lip service that every mack from Altgeld Gardens to Rogers Park put scouts out for me by sunset. Those gossiping motherfuckers described in great detail every freaky thing I did that obviously blown their minds and convince the other macks what laid between my thighs could make enough cash to fill a Brinks armored truck. Nothing beats having a good public relations team certifying this pussy a goldmine to my target demographic.

Macks came down on me to choose. I played it cool and held my tongue. They sent their hoes to pitch for them. I let the shade roll off my shoulders without appearing stuck up. That’s what pulled Mercy Black Percy out the shadows to me. That slick motherfucker didn’t disappoint. At almost seven feet tall and three hundred pounds, Dark Gable was as easy on the eyes as his fists are through a bitch’s ribs. And unlike all the other macks spitting tacks, he knew how to dress.

The Italian ensemble of floor length leather coat, custom suit and shoes with diamond studded everything was expensively tasteful without being over the top. Did little to hide his harsh demeanor that shined through all the jewelry though. Mercy Black Percy’s eyes were eerily cold, distant, and menacing like a psycho looking for victims. Crazy tendencies in his aura aside, motherfucker was sexy as all hell!

A good bitch lets the mack lead, which got me a very expensive lunch at Acadia’s. The game was strong and the money flowed trying to wrap me up. Conversation was mostly on his end. Macks like good hoes that are obedient enough to listen. They think that’s the green light to laying the foundation of controlling a bitch’s mind. If you know the mack and know yourself you need not fear a hundred tricks. Mack named St. Louis taught me that when I first got started.

Mercy Black Percy loves to floss. He took me all over the city spreading his wealth around to prove he was the chosen one. He also wanted to test my reaction on whether or not I could be bought at a lower price tag. Most bitches that ain’t never been nowhere or got nothing lose their minds when a man takes them to fancy places. He could tell I wasn’t cut from that cloth and have definitely been around the block.

Anybody could’ve knocked the motherfucker over with a feather seeing how cool I was when he took me to Ruth Chris’ and dropped a cool thousand on dinner. Don’t get me wrong, having our own personal table and private bartender is cute but nothing to faint over. I’m no fool though. Mercy Black Percy making a down payment on a future investment which he will make me work off in compound interest.

Going to Spiaggia was his way of letting it be known he was ready to fuck. This ain’t the type of joint to chat over cocktails; a nice dinner normally costs more than the average monthly rent in Chicago for one person. I still made him wait. He ain’t getting the pussy that easily on the first ask. Plus, he’s not the type of man used to hearing a bitch tell him no, so I had to be the first. However, just to tease for things to come I give him a blow job in his ride.

I’d heard the stories about him suffocating bitches in a death grip after giving them a throat pie. Them hands around my neck could feel the tension. Mercy Black Percy wasn’t ready for me slipping out his grasp right at the moment he nutted all over his expensive suit. Sure, he was angry as hell he didn’t choke me out to really get his rocks off but he dialed back the rage for the bigger picture. That earned him a three day ghost mode from me he didn’t take well.

A couple of his bitches wound up his personal punching bags with blackened eyes and swollen lips as he vented his frustration with blue balls. That part I never liked and always settle up with later, but I’m on a mission that can’t afford attachments which they should get. Meanwhile, work had to be done. Mercy Black Percy’s frustrations turned into him putting the word out he’s planning to break me in harder than a thoroughbred in a week or so.

I just love a mack that’s a formidable opponent. Makes me tingly all over.

Putting a mark on me doesn’t stop me from taking a breakfast date at the Hilton with him. Mercy Black Percy swore I looked like new money in a cute aqua tracksuit, some shades, matching wig, and some comfortable gym shoes.

A mack that’s lost all control of his emotions is a liability for himself and others. Those two weaknesses alone will give me a great advantage when we face off. Couple more bottle caps of heroin to the junkies leaks Mercy Black Percy is going to make me walk the plank. He’s already taking upfront money for his gang bang team to run through me like trash for two days and nights. After that, he’s shipping me off to the islands with a speedball shot in my veins to work in some tourist shack to get back all the money he’s been throwing around to get me.

I love a man that really knows how to show a bitch a good time!

Putting a mark on me doesn’t stop me from taking a breakfast date at the Hilton with him. Mercy Black Percy swore I looked like new money in a cute aqua tracksuit, some shades, matching wig, and some comfortable gym shoes. My hoe bag was a nice accessory with all the intricate things a good working girl needs to get down and dirty with the day’s trick. I grin and smile sipping tea as he holds back the rage building up in his eyes and not slapping the shit out of me.

Damn if that isn’t a turn on for things to come.

Nothing is sexier than a formidable foe with a taste for my blood and is not ashamed to come for me before I call for him. I want him just as bad as he wants me, if not more. I give into what he wants and agree to join the stable. No sooner than the words come out of my mouth do his huge aggressive hands jerk me from the table and yank me out the restaurant like a tattered doll coming apart at the seams.

I’m all for necessary roughness and the kidnapping bit he’s running down in front of his studio audience but the motherfucker got one coming for digging his fingernails so hard into my sleeves that he broke the flesh of my skin. I don’t play about identifying marks at all. All in things to come, let him tell it. Now that I’m part of the family his life of luxury is completely off limits and out of my reach. He wants to knock me down a peg or two. Can’t wait.

Our destination is a raggedy ass two flat I assume is one of his dip spots for the strung out or diseased hoes off 71st street. Place looks like a condemned building that time forgot. A cold stale aroma like draft that smells like a unwashed ass crack and spam infused nut sack meet my nostrils at the doorway. Creaky steps in a dark hallway aren’t spooky at all. Neither are the sounds of a gang of rats scurrying in the walls. Got to give it to Mercy Black Percy, he spares no expense.

Mercy Black Percy all but bum rushes me to the top floor, the end of our journey. From first glance it looks like a nasty ass junkie’s den that reeks of tetanus and syphilis. There are so many roaches about when he flicked on the light switch I swear they spelled out the word hello on the wall as soon as they got their bearings! This definitely wasn’t the lavish luxury lifestyle he was promising at the table, but beggars can’t be choosy getting what they want.

Rats running across my shoes distracted me enough to see Mercy Black Percy’s big ass hand slapping me hard across the face with orders to strip. Guess I didn’t get the picture because the backhand with the other hand I didn’t see coming split my lip. Chile, please. A couple of pops in the mouth do little to shake my strut. I ain’t never scared, especially with seeing that log between his legs either. My mind was already made up he was going to have to bring ass to get ass.

Sure, I knew damn well he was going to give it the college try breaking me down breaking me in. Delicate deflowering his technique was not, especially forcing himself into places he assumed I wasn’t prepared for him to enter. He humped hard and fast trying to force me into submission. I’ll give it to him he’s well versed in the stages of psychological sexual warfare. A lesser bitch would feel like ranch cattle on the range. Not me.

Mountains don’t move that easily and neither do I.

One thing a good bitch knows how to do is pace herself. Slow and steady wins the race.

I hung stroke for stroke three hours so Mercy Black Percy could learn that lesson the hard way.

Three hours later Mercy Black Percy was learning that lesson the hard way. Motherfucker was in sheer frustration that he couldn’t break me or give me some mind shattering orgasm. Right hand to God he rode me in all holes harder than Roy Rogers rode Trigger but this ain’t my first rodeo. I can throw it back just as nasty as he’s giving it until I get what I’ve come for.

Soon as he loses his second wind I mount and take him for a ride. Rage consumes his eyes. A delicious chill goes down my spine. Mercy Black Percy knows this pussy is good. So good that he’s tearing the flesh from my thighs like baked chicken falls off a bone. Motherfucker hated enjoying it too. If looks could kill I’d been dead four times over. Carefully, I lean back on an angle to make sure he can’t snap my neck the moment he busts a nut.

A good hoe knows when a trick’s stomach starts quivering and them hands clamp down on the legs in a vice grip it’s over. Soon as the eye rolls into the back of his head go down and I feel that pulsating vein about to give him the nut, I pull out my finely sharpened razor from the side of my wig, flicker it open, and cut his front shoulder muscles like warm butter. Blood syphons like a fountain. I slice both nerves in his armpits, narrowly avoiding hitting his arteries.

Air escapes his throat; his tonsils gurgles like a stuck pig going on a spit. Mercy Black Percy reaches for me but finds his arms don’t work. Damn it I love when they reach out and touch and find out they can’t. The panic, awe, horror, and subsequent shock that sets in their eyes gets me wet every time. Before he figures out his legs work I dismount, spin around, and cut his hamstrings and delicate tissues on the back of his ankles like a butcher knife cuts through Jell-O. That’s when the pain sits deep down in his spirit and gets his vocal chords singing high praises of agony and ecstasy for me. Ain’t nothing like a mack who gets off killing his own hoes screaming like a bitch in labor when it’s his time.

And I didn’t even tell him that was my type of foreplay!

Since the only thing he knows how to do with that tongue is scream I cut that out with a few of my favorite extraction tools from my hoe bag. As long and thick as it is it’s a waste he never learned the right way to use it. At least he can be proud that it’s a great souvenir for my collection. Sure, Mercy Black Percy is a little bit stingy parting with it but a few quick cuts to his facial nerves under his jaw and mastoid bone gives just enough paralysis for easy removal.

Ahh, looks of terror over his eyes warms my heart, especially when I tell him his soul belongs to whatever God is on his payroll but that ass is mine now. Guess the cat’s out of the bag now I’m not the average bitch. Yeah, I’m what the some would call a hedonistic visionary with psychotic tendencies. For simplicity’s sake the boys in blue just call me a psychopathic serial killer. Or a murderer depending on the news coverage.

I am whatever they say I am. Labels ain’t never been my thing.

Murderers are people who don’t have a license to kill with permission from the government to do so. Why should soldiers and jackals have all the fun? I’m just as particular as they are; not everybody is worthy to meet their demise by my hands. My fetish is taking out other killers that don’t respect the hustle and don’t think the tables can turn on them. Case in point this piece of shit here with a body count a mile long.

First thing I relieve him of is his fingers and toes. Cutting the digits off at the base of the knuckle bone is about as painful as it gets, even more than fingernail extraction. Hearing the portable saw crack at the bone like you crack a walnut in the shell is better than cool jazz on a rainy afternoon. I’ll give this to Mercy Black Percy, he’s a trooper. Ten toes, eight fingers and two thumbs on his chest is a good sendoff for the mack of the year to see passing out from shock.

Damn I love sadistic macks and violent husbands as marks, especially ones like Mercy Black Percy that are brutal with their victims but want a penny for your thoughts or a razor to end their misery by the time I’m almost done with them. These types keep me more on my toes than the average gang banger with a beef on a rival set, even though those are good training mules. Turns me on too, but that’s mostly from weeks of anticipation waiting for slaying.

Usually I just cut motherfuckers like him in the throat and be done with it. Since he’s been leaving dead bitches in the gutter like trash taking my time cutting him up and toying with his body parts for every hoe that wished they had their revenge on him. Getting fingers and toes chopped off at the bone is a horrible way to check out but the motherfucker didn’t cut any of his bitches slack so why should I. As arrogant as he is, he should revel in the special treatment.

For two years I’ve been following him in the news. Massive amounts of arrests, sure. No convictions or trial. Let go back to the street to wreak havoc on the forgotten. Some bodies were found dumped in a ditch by the Metra tracks while others were thrown in dumpsters. All roads end to Mercy Black Percy killing hoes a day late with trap money or a couple dollars short. And why? The booster got some new designer merch in and he didn’t want to use pocket change.

My work’s done. I shook my clothes thoroughly to make sure nothing was hitching a ride.

Chicago Police said a few bitches were strung up as a makeshift heavy bag and punched in cardio sessions every hour on the hour until there was nothing left but pulp. The boys in blue called it inadmissible hearsay. Every single time they let him slip through their fingers. My guess is they all were on the take. Six more dead hoes after that and not a single case made it to trial. That was enough for me to find him and I was thirsty for my next kill.

Now he feels blood loss like his bitches do. I just hate he lost consciousness right as I cut the nipples off like pumpkin tops. Just as well, since the roaches had to eat. You ain’t seen hungry roaches until they make a conga line and nestle into the open wounds like an all you can eat buffet. I had no problems with that. Mercy Black Percy had plenty of dark meat to go around and take home to their nest for hard times.

Being roach Thanksgiving and all I carved the delicate tissues surrounding his neck with a box cutter than made the meat fall right off his bones like a holiday bird. The way his eyes damn near popped out of the sockets is a good sign it hurt him like all hell. Arrogant asshole still thought he had a way out but he forgot one thing – the smell of his blood in the air. A hard knock on the wall above the bed dropped a mound of hungry rats ready and able to invade any opening left to be had on his body.

Ain’t nothing like a little help from my friends!

My work’s done. I shook my clothes thoroughly to make sure nothing was hitching a ride. Mercy Black Percy’s bowels erupting, leaving the scent of lingering death and constipation as his heaving chest slowed first to a crawl and then collapsed to a halt under the weight of the rat roaches combo feasting on his bones. The sea of black spots swarming his flesh was utterly poetic in formation and technique. Nature is scary, ain’t it?

Somehow I feel change is about to come through the hoe world. The macks will be whispering forever about how Mercy Black Percy went out. Sure, after the celebration of him being dead wears off the fear will set in. When you don’t have answers to questions the mind becomes a repository for a vivid imagination. A handful will be paranoid they could end up a roach smorgasbord. The girls will have a coke and a smile.

My only regret is not telling Mercy Black Percy that he was the eleventh mack who’s had the privilege of meeting their end by my handiwork. Of all of them he probably was the only one that really gave me a run for the money. Sure, his bedroom skills weren’t worth the hype and neither was his game but his sidekicks weren’t that bad of a lay. They definitely helped get my nerves off edge. That’s about the only reason they aren’t fish food their damn selves.

Flicking roaches away from his wrists to check for a pulse is definitely a new experience but I’d rather be sure than assume he’s dead just in case he lives to tell about it. No sense in being careless now. My portable stethoscope doesn’t detect a heartbeat either. I snatch the chain off his neck and get the couple grand in his wallet too. It’s good to make a crime scene look like a robbery to throw suspicion off. The cops investigating will automatically think it was a revenge robbery gone wrong and will look in all the wrong places for the killer while I’m down the road.

What will slow them down a plenty is lack of fingerprints. I don’t have any. Chemical burns took care of that years ago. Forensics with their snooping asses might find some bodily fluids but I’m willing to bet between the roaches, rats, and the decomposition factor the DNA won’t be usable, especially after the barbeque. The flask of kerosene in my hoe bag start a nice blaze on top of his chest on my exit. He smells like a pork crackling cooking him at about three hundred degrees. That’s that. Exit stage left. Going to take his money and get me a suite at the Drake Hotel. After that it’s me, Calgon, and concentrated bleach to wash the sin, mice splatter, and roach shit off of me.

I’m going to miss Chicago. The Windy City always shows me a bloody good time.

Tia Ja’nae was born a Trekkie within the realm of Articulate Madness, grew up in the throes of great writers, and currently may be classified by the order of your government. Her work has appeared in Pulp Modern, Punk Noir Magazine, 365 Tomorrows, and Flashback Fiction Magazine, among others. Archive Of Our Own also features some of her feature length fan fiction under her pseudonym.

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