The Call: Mr. Big

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Literature Text

Nick had to get some sleep. He knew  he had to get some sleep. This shift had started over twenty-four hours ago. He and Judy had just been ready to drive back to the station at the end of their normal  twelve hours when he had spotted the Russian polar bear climbing out of an SUV and heading down towards one of the warehouses by the docks. Why the hell hadn't he just let the guy go on his merry way was beyond his ability to reason now. Of course once he had pointed him out to Judy there was no stopping her from following the bear to see what he was up to.

They'd tailed him for close to four hours, observing how he'd left the warehouse looking very smug and satisfied, then took a walk along the docks to speak to a certain team of otter longshoremen, then moved on to the shipping terminal offices. Somewhere along the way he must have spotted his tail. No matter how good a sneaky fox and a little bunny were at hiding, they couldn't disguise their police uniforms.

Then he'd made that turn into the alley, Judy following on his heels, and Nick two damned steps behind them both. Just in time to see Judy's body go flying out of the alley, blood trailing from her torn belly, to strike the wall across the damned street with the sound of crunching bones. Then he was screaming into his radio for an ambulance, trying to stop the bleeding, nothing in the damned Junior Ranger Scout manual having ever said anything about bandaging gut wounds or sewing up internal injuries.

Now Judy was in the hospital, and her parents were trying to break the land speed record in that rusty pickup truck of theirs to see their daughter in case it might be the last chance they ever had. Nick had left her to give his report, make the call to them, and mumble answers to the ZPD crisis counselor's questions until she finally let him go with an admonition to get some sleep and a prescription for something to help him get to dreamland. Which he immediately stuffed into the next waste bin he passed, because dreaming was the absolute last thing he wanted to do.

“Officer Wilde?” a deep voice asked. Nick blinked, looking up to see Kevin, one of Mr. Big's own polar bears, looming over him at the bus stop, where he'd been waiting to catch the Number 7 back to his apartment. “Mr. Big would like to see you,” Kevin went on in his accented English

“Kevin, buddy, now is not the best time,” Nick intoned flatly. Kevin was one Mr. Big's brighter minions. Who knew, he might actually take the hint and bug off.

Kevin nodded, then said, “Mr. Big is aware that you might be distressed. He wishes to discuss the reasons for your distress with you.”

Nick's ears went flat, and he managed to summon enough energy to say, “In the morning.”

“He said you come now.” Kevin then cut the argument short by picking Nick by the collar of his uniform shirt, at least it wasn't by his neck, and carry the officer bodily over to the waiting limousine.

“You're assaulting an officer,” Nick noted, but his heart wasn't into even a cursory insult.

The drive was less than twenty minutes. Nick spent it in a half doze on the comfortably padded leather seats of the limo. He decided since he didn't have any say in the situation, he might as go on autopilot for a time and let someone else do the thinking. When the limo stopped he was guided by the elbow to an office, not the one with the trapdoor over the river, thank goodness, and sat in front of a very large desk with a very small rodent dressed in a very small tuxedo, sitting in an equally small chair on top of it.

“Mr. Big.” Nick tried to gather together his fraying concentration, because pissing off the powerful crime lord wasn't the cherry he wanted to put on top of an already horrible day. “I'm sorry, but I'm really  not up to polite conversation right now. Could we make this sho--, quick?”

“Nicholas,” the septuagenarian rodent said in a raspy voice, “I will not keep you long from your bed. But my grandchildren, they are crying, you understand. They are asking, 'Grandfather, why is our Godmother Judy in the hospital? Why would someone hurt our lovely godmother, Officer Judy?'” Behind Nick, Kevin crossed himself briefly, looking sorrowful.

“Then you can tell them that their Godmother Judy is in the hospital, because her stupid, slow, partner Nick couldn't save her from being hurt,” he ground out between clenched fangs.

“I know your Judy, Nicholas. If you were too slow, it's only because Officer Judy was too quick. Always she is ready jump ahead, to see who needs to be helped, to see what is to be found.” He drew in a breath. “You are not the one that hurt her. It was that pezzo di merda Russian bear.”

“I know, I know.” But knowing that wouldn't quiet down the thought that he should have done something to save her.

“You wish to find this bear?”

“Yes, but he's just a go-between,” Nick said. “The ZPD knows he's working for the head of Mafiya, but  we haven't been able to connect him to anybody yet.” He felt his claws digging into his paw pads, and quickly placed both palms on his knees, before he drew blood. “We need a name.”

“Volkov,” Mr. Big rasped. “The one you are truly looking for is called Volkov.”

“Why didn't you tell us this before?” Nick demanded, too ragged and tired to think better about addressing the shrew in such a sharp tone.

Mr. Big shrugged. “I did not know this before. But the bear you hunt, he likes his drink. Someone in a bar heard him talking about hurting the famous bunny police officer, about how his boss Volkov was so pleased. That person spoke to Kevin, who spoke to me.”

Suddenly awake and alert, Nick pushed himself out of the chair, not waiting to be dismissed. “I gotta call this in. I'll tell chief Bogo that a... um, a concerned citizen gave me a tip.”

“You do that, Nicholas.” Mr. Big stood up, and how a four inch tall shrew could suddenly loom was something Nick would never be able to figure out. “You tell your Chief Bogo that your concerned citizen is very angry about what was done to Officer Hopps. You also tell him that he has three days.”

“Three days? What do you mean three days?” Nick asked, swaying on his feet suddenly as an imaginary trap door opened underneath him. Beside him, Kevin grabbed his shoulder with one meaty paw to steady him.

“In three days, if the ZPD does not find this Volkov, I will find him,” Mr.  Big declared.

Nick's ears laid back flat against his head. “You're talking about a war?”

“Yes, Nicholas. Volkov's bear, he thought he was just hurting a silly bunny cop. He did not know he was hurting family. You wish to attack Mr. Big, that is just business. You attack my grandchildren's godmother, that is war.”

He swallowed. “Mr. Big, please. We've got a new crime family in the city causing trouble, and my chief is trying to ride herd on a bunch very angry cops, who are going to be looking for this Volkov too. Zootopia doesn't need a crime war on top of this. It hasn't been a year since the Night Howler case was wrapped up. Things are too unsettled right now. A war might break this city apart.”

“That is why I give you three days, Nicholas,” Mr. Big said, his thick eyebrows turned down in anger. “I love Zootopia too. Little Rodentia is a place of safety, prosperity, for my people. I will not have this Russian and his bears stepping on it.” He sat back down on his padded leather chair. “Three days, Nicholas. If you do not find him in three days, I start hunting these bears, and your Chief Bogo and the rest of ZPD would be safest staying out of the way. You tell Chief Bogo that Mr. Big said this.”

Nick swallowed again, his throat dry with fear. “I will, sir.”
Never get Family involved with Business.
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nekoshappiness33's avatar
And the Sly Sir-Talen wins!! :iconinulaplz: :iconinuyeyplz:  Wazaga will be drawing a picture!!  BOOYAKASHA!! :iconinuyeyplz:  I can't wait to see it!!  

Sir-Talen, this second chapter is really, really good!!  Mr. Big is now involved and there will be hell to pay!!  I love it!! :iconinuloveplz: