It Happened in China Town by Ichabod
Charlie Tang jumped breathlessly out of a yellow cab. "Tara, your brother, and Willie are stuck in Wu Chang's factory."
Tara Wei looked up from her little vegetable garden and stared at Charlie, "Why did they go there! They knew it was much too dangerous."
Charlie was on the ground beside her, talking excitedly. "Your brother knew he could find evidence of Wu making drugs. He took Willie to take pictures for the newspaper. I came along for moral support. We got in and found where Wu makes the drugs. Took pictures and got caught. Your brother and I were able to get away, but Willie got beat up and they took him back to an office. Your brother sent me to get help. He stayed to see if he could help Willie."
Tara stood up and threw her gardening gloves to the ground. "We've got to call the police."
"No Tara. We call the police and Willie is dead. We need to get him out first. I'm getting Sammy and Dodo. We'll bust back in, get Willie and call the police from there before we leave. I'm sure they haven't found your brother yet. We'll have an element of surprise."
Tara looked doubtful and put her hands on her hips. "I'm going too."
Charlie shook his head worried. "No Tara. You need to stay here in case we don't come back."
Tara still stood defiant. "Do you think I'll be safe here? Besides, none of you have a car. How are you going to get to Wu Chang's Factory? By cab...Real conspicuous. I'll drive. My brother taught me how to take care of myself."
Tara, Charlie, Sammy Cheung, and Dodo Liu snuck into the alleyway next to Wu Chang's Hard Candy Factory in the center of China Town. It was dusk. The tall buildings cast long shadows that made slinking in easier. The evening shift was still working so there was plenty of noise to hide their movements. Charlie led the others into a side door that opened to a dimly lit hallway. They hid behind a row of crates and watched a fit-looking man sitting behind a small desk smoking and reading a magazine. Beside him was what looked to be a utility closet.
Charlie pointed to the man. "He's guarding the entrance."
"We could rush him," said Dodo. He was always ready for direct action.
"No. Too noisy, besides he might be armed. He's sure to get off some kind of alarm before we reached him."
Tara looked at the guard for a while. "I've got an idea."
She was still dressed in her gardening clothes. A loose white tee shirt and a snug pair of old blue jeans. She tied the front end of her tee-shirt into a knot just below her bust line, exposing her abdomen from just below her round half outie navel to the curve of her ribs.
Charlie was utterly surprised. He had known Tara since she was just a kid, and although she was cute, she had always been the innocent girl next door. Always dressing modestly, even at the beach. All the boys stared. She was unbelievable. Her stomach was smooth and firm yet very feminine. She didn't appreciate their looks.
"You just get him while his back is turned." She walked down the hallway towards the guard. As she walked down the hallway. the guard, a big mean ugly looking man put down his magazine to regard her. Tara smiled as she walked past and the man followed her with his eyes and turned slowly to continue to watch. She turned looked at a calendar on the wall. She stretched a bit to point to it as if checking the date, exposing more of her abdomen to view. He was about to speak when Dodo hit his head from behind. The guard fell unconscious to the floor. Dodo and Sammy tied the guard with duct tape they found in the desk drawer and tossed him into the utility closet. The back of the closet had a dark metal staircase twisting down into the basement.
"They're down there." He pointed down the staircase. Charlie led the group with Sammy following, then Tara and Dodo covering the rear. Tara kept her shirt knotted up. They could probably use the trick again. Besides, it made her feel like a spy... or a Bond girl.
As they walked down their eyes became accustomed to the dark. The stairway became straight and entered what looked like the production floor of a factory.
"This is where they make the drugs," Charlie said, "Over there is the office."
He pointed to a door and glass window visible from the staircase.
"Look!" Tara noticed, "It's Willie. He's in the Office on the couch."
"He looks drugged," Sammy said. A commotion started from around the corner, sounds of fighting could be heard. Tara recognized her brother's voice.
"C'mon," said Dodo," We got to jet." Charlie pointed to the Office, "Tara you get Willie and call the police. We'll get your brother and get out of here."
They all moved quickly down the staircase and Tara went over to the Office. The door was open. Willie weakly looked up at Tara as she came in. He looked drugged.
"Willie are you alright."
"Call the cops..." He gestured weakly towards the phone on the desk.
Tara nodded and went over to the desk. She sat down by the phone with her back to the door. She could hear the commotion outside get louder as she dialed zero and asked the operator for the police.
She looked back over at Willie worriedly. "I'll be OK," he tried to smile.
A voice came again over the phone. "Fifth precinct is this an emergency?"
Tara spoke hurriedly, "Yes! We've found a drug ring at Wu Chang's Factory in China Town. People are hurt send help..."
Tara's words turned into a yelp of pain. Hands pulled her from the chair and into the air by her hair. Her hands went reflexively to her scalp to relieve the pain. Tara's was slammed against the wall of the office completely stretching her body. Her feet were off the floor. A fist buried itself deep into her stomach just above her navel. She didn't expect it. Air came whooshing out of her. Her attacker dropped her to the ground. She crumpled into a ball holding her middle and trying to **** air.
"Looks like our trap caught the wrong mouse."
She looked up and saw a skinny man with crooked teeth by Willie. Willie looked like he had seen a ghost. Tara thought how could she have been so stupid. They wouldn't leave Willie unguarded! The man hulking over her, gloating... her attacker was the guard from the hall. He was rubbing his right fist with his left hand. He had enjoyed the punch.
The skinny man spoke again, "Maybe we can catch our rat with a little mouse. Woncau, pick her up and take her to the door."
Tara was gaining her breath back. She began to struggle as the guard picked her up. He smacked her face.
"No Woncau! Not the face. That's our bait."
The guard smiled and hoisted Tara easily up and pushed her against the wall with force. The action stunned Tara. Woncau wound his left arm through her arms and across her back. He tightened his grip and forced her chest outward. He turned with Tara away from the wall and towards the door. She tried to kick off the wall and nearly broke free. They struggled a bit when Woncau took his free right fist and plowed it deeply again into Tara's exposed belly.
"oooooof," she said deflating. He held his hand there, enjoying the sensation. Tara could barely breathe until he removed his fist. When he finally did he whispered in her ear, "Now be a good girl for uncle Woncau."
Woncau dragged her to the doorway.
Tara's brothers and the others had been doing well. She saw other men keeping their distance panting. The skinny man spoke, "Liu Cheung, Whose pretty little doll is this." No one spoke, Charlie, Sammy, Dodo, and Tara's brother Liu all looked equally shocked.
"Come now," the skinny man spoke again, "She must mean something to someone."
Silence again. Even Wu Chang's henchmen looked shocked.
The skinny man clucked his tongue, "Oh well. Then none of you will mind this."
He reached over to Tara and held her across the chest with his left arm, then he punched her in the belly on top of the navel with his right fist. He hammered three quick punches in succession. Each punctuated by a meaty thwump from his fist hittingTara's belly and an ever-weakening ooof from her mouth. Woncau just laughed.
The basement exploded into action. Liu jumped to save his sister. Woncau tossed her back into the office and moved to meet Liu. Fighting erupted around the door. Tara tried to regain her breath. Her breathing labored as she held her tortured belly. As the air came more easily she rolled over onto her back. Her right arm outflung over her head. Her left massaged he stomach around her navel. The sound of sirens could be heard. Tara felt a wave of relief. The door slammed and the fight sounds dimmed.
"I'm not through with you." Woncau had come in. He was bleeding from his lip and one eye was swollen half shut. He had locked the door and there was a dreadful pounding from outside. Tara could hear her brother screaming.
Tara tried to move, but Woncau leaped to the floor and pinned her legs beneath his right knee. He then grabbed both wrists and held them pinned to the floor above her head. Her abdomen stretched before him. A red blotch formed where she had been punched before. His jaws went slack as he balled his right fist and punched straight down between her ribcage and navel. Tara oofed.
He held his fist there for several seconds. He raised it again and punched down again straight into her navel. Tara had no more air and she could feel consciousness slipping away.
He moved his fist up and down her belly. Then lifted it to punch a third time.
Willie rolled off the couch and into him breaking his hold. Tara laid there as Woncau got up to deal with Willie. The door finally burst open and Tara's brother and the police came in.
An ambulance carried Tara and Willie away. She would feel better in a week, but never felt like being a Bond girl again.