Catchall #2

C-Note: Wishes and Bitches

Norfolk, Virginia:

C-Note had been watching Smackdown negotiate with this crazy dude in gray armor, covered in what looked like some kinda blue samurai gear. Guy was saying he could give the Liberteens Wish- straight up wishes in a pill. Smack wasn't buying it though, and was about to walk away from the deal.

Crazy dude held out one of those glowing blue pills in his hand, and said, "Again- maybe one of you would like to try it."

It seemed impossible, but he felt like actual wishes were too great a chance to pass up. So C-Note said, "Yo, Smack. I'll try it. Just if things get stupid, don't let my moms see me until I'm right again."

Smack gave him a fist bump, and said, "A'ight, C-Note."

C-Note strutted back over to the crazy dude, looked at his inscrutable mask, and swore he saw light dance behind the white eye lenses. Sniffing once, he picked up the pill, looked at it, and said, "How's this work?"

"Just take the pill, and wish for something," the man said, sounding almost threatening.

"Wish for something?" asked C-Note, looking slightly confused. "Wish for what?"

The man pinched his fingertips together next to the pill in C-Note's hand, and flicked them open, pulling his hands outwards in an exploding motion, and whispered, "Anything!" The whisper seemed to echo around the warehouse, making the other gang members look around nervously.

C-Note snorted once. "Anything," he laughed. "A'ight, homes, we'll see." With no ceremony, he popped the pill into his mouth, and swallowed. He felt no different, but he looked at his chest, and watched the blue light shine from inside him, working its way down to his gut. He laughed aloud, and turned towards his homies, all of whom- even Smack- got wide-eyed. "Will you look at this?" declared C-Note. "A'ight! A'ight, homes!" he declared, pointing back at the man. "You want a wish?" Turning back to the gang, he nodded, smirked, held his arms wide, and said, "I wish I had twenty million dollars and some bitches to celebrate with!"

His boys started to cheer their approval when a stack of money appeared between them and C-Note, along with ten mutts of varying breeds. The cheering stopped, and the gang jumped backwards before inching forward slightly. "Yo, what the--?" said C-Note. "What's with these fuggin' dogs, dude?"

"You asked for bitches," stated the man. "Bitch: a female dog, wolf, fox, or otter." With a sinister chuckle, he wagged his finger, shrugged, and said, "You could have wound up with wolves, you know." Crossing one arm over his chest, and resting the other elbow on it, he curled a finger against his lip, and said, "The otters might have been cute though. But never foxes. No. Foxes are trouble."

Smack sounded pissed, "Yo. Peeps don't get what they wish for, they gonna start beef."

"Then I suggest you tell them what they should already know: be careful what you wish for," growled the man.

C-Note did a slow walk around the money, and the dogs jumped around him happily.

Smack was quiet for a minute. Finally, he asked, "How much?"

C-Note couldn't believe what he was seeing. Crazy dude just waved his hands, and oil drums of the glowing pills appeared before him. "I'll give you all that you want," he said with a bow.

"Huh," Smack scoffed. "What's the catch?"

"You have to give away the first hit, and you can't sell anyone more than three," said the man, holding up three fingers for emphasis. "A person only gets three wishes, after all. Remember: you can sell the second and third hits for as much as you like, and they're going to pay."

"You're pretty sure about this," said Smack, still sounding slightly doubtful.

"I am."

"Anything else?" Smack asked.

"Just two more things," said the man, holding up a finger. He suddenly disappeared, and reappeared right in front of Smackdown, making him flinch. C-Note hardly ever saw Smack flinch. It weirded him out a little. Then crazy dude whispered in Smack's ear, and for some reason, that made C-Note's heart race. Then aloud, crazy dude said, "And remember: you must tell them this before you sell them the third hit."

Smack looked shook, but he didn't sound it when he said, "I got one more thing too. The Liberteens don't work with no one that I don't know."

"You may call me The Wishing Demon."

"Ah, a wise decision," said the man, sounding pleased. Bowing slightly, he said, "You may call me The Wishing Demon," and a guttural growl seemed to come from the masked man.

Smack began sweating, but he didn't sound afraid. "You said you had two more things. What's the other one," he asked.

"Oh!" exclaimed the Wishing Demon, suddenly standing bolt upright. He pointed a thumb over his shoulder, and growled, "Make sure you clean up after your bitches before you leave." With that, he disappeared.

The gang looked over towards C-Note and the money, and saw that a bulldog, a beagle, and a Yorkshire terrier were peeing on the cash.

"Damn, C-Note! Clean that crap up, and meet us back at the crib!" shouted Smack.

"Why me?" he complained.

"Because you're the one that wished for dogs, stupid!" Snapping a finger, he ordered, "Everyone else get those barrels on a truck."

C-Note just punched the air a couple times, pissed at himself for messing his wish up. Then he thought about something. "Yo, Smack. What'd he whisper in your ear? What we gotta tell junkies before they buy a third hit?"

The way Smack looked at him, C-Note knew he didn't want to say. But he did anyway. "He said if you make your third wish, you lose your soul."

C-Note scoffed. "Yeah, right. What the fug'd he say, man? I've already taken one of those things." He scratched a golden retriever behind it's ears while he looked at the leader of the Liberteens.

Smackdown just looked back at him, saying nothing else.

"C'mon, man, you jokin', right?"

Smack still didn't say anything. He just gave a tight shake of his head.

C-Note didn't know what to say to that.

Just then, there was a loud squawk, and Flipside shouted, "Yo! Where'd this danged chicken come from?"

Just as suddenly, there was a pop of air, and the chicken was gone. "Aw, man!" shouted Smack. "Get this stuff loaded up, and let's get the hell out of here!"

With a pop, the drums of Wish were suddenly on the flatbed. Behind it were twenty briefcases of money, and ten dog crates with the dogs in them.

The gang started buggin' out, and Smack and C-Note just looked at each other. "I think someone wants us to go, Smack."

"Yeah," Smackdown agreed. "Let's get the fug outta here."

***

C-Note's Mama's House:

"Hon'!" called C-Note's mama. "You comin' down for dinner?"

"Yeah, ma!" C-Note hollered. "I'll be down in just a minute. I just gotta finish brushin' this dog!"

"Don't be long! It's gettin' cold!"

"A'right, ma!" he called back. Really, he finished brushing the poodle awhile ago. Now, he was just sitting on his bed, staring at the twenty briefcases stacked in his closet. In front of the Liberteens, Smack had told him to take them home, and they'd square up when the Wish deal was done. Aside, Smack had said he was sorry about the soul thing, and told him to keep the money, but not to tell anyone else. Smack had never given up money that should go to the gang before. This stuff really had him scared then. The more he thought about Smack being scared, the more it made C-Note scared. He didn't know if he believed in a soul or not, but he had a feeling it was worth more than any twenty million.

Then he reached in his pocket, and brought out two of the glowing blue pills. Smack had given him those too. "Yo, man, I don't know about this- we saw what it could do, thanks to you- but here. You earned 'em. Just keep it to yourself. Get it over with, or flush 'em, man. Whatever." They fist bumped, and C-Note had driven the truck home, dogs still in the crates.

He was gonna put them all in the backyard, but his mama loved them as soon as she saw them, so they all came in the house. The black lab and the golden retriever were in the kitchen with his mom. The bulldog and the French bulldog were lounging on the back porch. The German shepherd and the German shorthaired pointer didn't seem to want anything to do with each other, but they had both taken corners of the living room- one below the TV, and the other beside the recliner, next to the kitchen doorway. The beagle was at the top of the stairs, and the rottweiler and poodle had come to his room. The rott' had gone to his sister's room as soon as she got home, which she loved. C-Note didn't mind it either- maybe it would be good to have a big dog tagging along with his sister.

He put the pills back in his pocket, and headed down to dinner.

***

C-Note's Mama's House, Two Months Later:

"Oh, pleeeeeeease, can I have some bacon? Can I? Please? Oh, please! Lemme have some baconnn!"

"Dang, Tawny!" C-Note groused to the golden retriever. "Don't you ever think about anything else?"

"How can I?" asked the dog, crouched low to the floor. "It's so goooood. Bacon? Please? Bacon?" she whined.

"A'ight," laughed C-Note, as he dropped some bacon from his plate to the kitchen floor. "But you better start talking about something besides that all the time! Y'hear?" he demanded as the dog greedily snapped up the strips and ate them. "I didn't wish for you to talk so you could just say 'bacon' all the danged time! You supposed to be keepin' mama company, an' tellin' her what the other dogs want!"

"Ohhh, yesyesyes!" Tawny yipped, wagging her tail. "I'll talk to her whenever she wants!" she said happily. Tilting her head, she said, "Do I still get bacon though?" Her eyes begged for it.

C-Note chuckled, shaking his head. Throwing another strip down, he said, "That's the last one! The rest are mine!" Tawny gobbled her bacon, and C-Note had a piece for himself. "Mm! It is good though!"

That wasn't the only reason he had wished for Tawny to talk. He was a little scared to use the wishes on anything big. The money was turning into a fulltime job, and the dogs were all over the place, always up in his business. The other wishes were still tempting though. He kept thinking that he could use the second one at least- he wouldn't lose his soul until the third wish. He thought of so many things to wish for- it just consumed him. Finally, he couldn't take anymore, and he decided to just use the second wish and get it over with. The third wish wouldn't be as tempting, because that one would cost him his soul. So he wished for Tawny to talk, and that was it for the second wish.

***

C-Note's Mama's House, One Month Later:

C-Note wasn't just called that because of his sonic powers. He was also really good with money. He'd sent his sister to school, which honestly she wasn't that happy about, but she went. He'd set his mom up for life- paid off the house, bought her a car, and hired her to take care of the dogs, so she could get out of that convenience store- Mister Patel was kind of a prick. C-Note hoped it pissed him off. His mom was happy to take this new job, except for cleaning up the dogs' poops in the backyard. So he hired one of the neighbor kids to do that, making it more than worth his while. Kid still bailed a couple times a week. C-Note was thinking about hiring a landscape company to keep the yard clean instead.

Without letting Smack know, he'd invested a good deal of the money. Almost as soon as it was in, the market took a steep dive, and he took a big hit. It might have destroyed a lot of people, but he'd picked his investments well, and they were making a comeback. Slowly, but they were approaching what he started with.

He had part of it in banks too. At ten grand, a bank would have to report his deposit to the IRS, so he deposited less than that in each account. So, he had money in lots of banks. A few of them had been robbed by some chick in a pink costume. Totally wiped those banks out. Money's insured and all, but it pissed him off a little.

And part of it, he'd done what his mama told him. "You're gonna give your tithe to the church, young man! Y'hear me?" she'd scolded.

"What?" C-Note had balked. "What's the church gonna do with two million dollars, mama?!"

"Whatever the Lord wants 'em too!" she said, smacking his shoulder. "And you take it down there today, before the devil talks you out of it!"

C-Note shook his head. "A'ight, mama."

She rubbed his head, smiled proudly at him, and went on after the bulldogs, Tawny close behind her.

"Are you going to the kitchen?" asked the retriever. "Is there any bacon left?"

"Tawny! Quit worryin' me about bacon!" his mama shouted.

"Oh, pleeeease," begged the dog.

C-Note couldn't help laughing. Mama was gonna kill him over that dog. Then he thought about the church, tsked, and headed upstairs to get a couple of briefcases. He didn't really mind giving the tithe like his mama wanted him to do. It's just that the reverend was going to ask a lot of questions about where the money came from. Oh, he'd take it for sure, but he'd make C-Note feel real uncomfortable about how he got it. He sighed, and headed back downstairs. May as well get it over with.

Sitting on his bed, he thought about that long, uncomfortable conversation with the reverend, and just handing over two million dollars like it was Monopoly money. He sighed lightly, but just shook his head. It was done now. Besides, it made his mama happy, and the church wasn't a bad place to give money to. He didn't go as often as his mama would like, but something good always seemed to happen after tithing. Mama said that was just the Lord's way. C-Note considered it a good return on investment.

***

West Liberty Street Underpass of the Liberteens, Three Days Later:

The cops and some heroes had stormed their parking lot about twenty minutes ago. The fighting was brutal, and unbelievably, C-Note was having to fight off a little girl with the same powers as he had. He was winning, of course, but then there was a sharp pain, and he woke up in handcuffs, and in the back of a prisoner transport truck.

Smack filled him in. They'd lost, obviously, and were on their way to jail. One of the heroes had taken a pill, and wished all the Wish out of existence. They were done. C-Note was shocked, but found himself chuckling, then full on laughing. He laughed for a long minute.

"Yo, C, you okay?" asked Smack.

"Yo, man, I am better than okay! I am saved!" laughed Smack.

"'Saved?' Whatta you mean?" asked Smack. "You findin' religion all of a sudden?"

C-Note shook his head. "Naw, man." Then he thought of the tithe his mama made him give. "Well, maybe," he laughed, "but that ain't it. No more Wish, man! Don't you get it?"

Smack just looked at him.

"No more Wish, man! That means I can't make my third wish! I'm not gonna lose my soul, man! Ha haaa! Yes!" he said triumphantly.

Smackdown actually looked relieved. "Yo, man, that is good!" Then his face scrunched for a few seconds while he thought about something, and he said, "What did you use your second wish on?"

C-Note just laughed. "Same as the first, man: bitches." And he laughed some more.

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