The Bed You Make
Chapter 43
~ Knock, Knock ~

The six men in the nondescript van were fresh off an uneventful stint guarding the young prince of Wyndemere. Boris had divided the crew into four core teams with two more teams in reserve. It would be thirty-six hours before they were pressed back into duty, so a couple of hours of women and drinking were definitely in order before they went home to get some rest.

"I am thinking to seeing Jennifer tonight," Akim, the youngest and cockiest of the crew airily announced. Unlike the others, he spoke only English. It was, Akim informed them, the only real way to smooth out his heavy accent. Losing his accent had been one of Akim's main goals for the last six months or so. Like most of the young Russian men of his generation, Akim was entranced by everything American. He watched an endless parade of music videos and late night porn with all the fascination of a toddler watching Saturday cartoons. That fascination explained why his speech was so often peppered with inappropriate sayings and why his behavior occasionally veered frighteningly into the offensive. "I am thinking," Akim pumped his fist in a crude pantomime of sexual intercourse, "to putting it to her good." The other men rolled their eyes. If Akim wasn't boasting about his sexual prowess, he was lamenting that it was only the long work hours and his thick accent that kept him from being offered his own reality show on ‘the MTV', as he called it.

"Remember Boris' words." The quiet warning came from the heavily scarred driver of the van. He was called Osya and even among the most violent of the Bratva he was considered a dangerous man. "He will not be happy if he must send me to clean up another mess." Earlier that year Akim had gotten just a little too physical with a woman he'd picked up one night. Osya had been dispatched to get rid of the two witnesses who'd seen Akim leave the bar with the dead woman. He'd been on a kind of unspoken probation ever since.

"Do not worry," the young Russian replied. "I will not make the mess again.”

"Da, that is..." Osya fell silent as he concentrated all his attention on avoiding the silver luxury car that swerved suddenly into the van's path. As he wrestled the van onto the side of the sparsely traveled road, the other Russians in the van began to pull weapons from beneath the seats. Silently they armed themselves and awaited Osya's instructions.

“Stay inside,” he ordered when several of the others prepared to follow him out of the van. “But if trouble comes,” Osya continued, “leave no one alive.” Every man inside the van knew the unspoken remainder of the terse command. They were to ensure that those who had waylaid them did not walk away from the encounter even if it meant that the men inside the van had to include Osya in the fatality count.

“Osya,” Akim softly asked, “who is thinking to stopping us?”

Osya opened the van door. “In Port Charles, there is only one man so arrogant.”