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"A Starsky and Hutch Reunion"
"You are not wearing that outfit!" Starsky bellowed.
Trini looked at her uncle, and put her nose in the air. "I will have you know I've been wearing this 'outfit' the whole time. It's what everybody wears--well, all the waitresses anyhow."
Starsky was still more than a little irritated. He was smart enough to know people had to wear things when they were undercover, but this...this was too much--or, too little from his standpoint.
Elbowing Hutch in the ribs, he growled, "Close your mouth, you'll catch flies."
Trini smiled and looked at Hutch--he did seem to like the way she looked, and it made her happy. Maybe he wasn't the man of steel, after all.
Still, Starsky was in his full throttle 'dad' mode, and he was making Trini nuts. "Geez, Trini. Can't ya' put a coat on or somethin'?"
Shrugging, Trini turned to grab her coat, but didn't button it after she'd slipped it casually over her shoulders.
Hutch thought, if possible, that made her look even sexier. That 'uniform' looked more like lingerie to him.
The standard issue outfit of the waitresses bordered on obscene. The shirt (if you could call it that) was sleeveless and made up of see-through golden lace, with a single strip of lace wrapped around Trini's neck. Right below the lace neckband, the shirt was cut open into a large key-hole, ending just above her navel. The only decent thing Trini wore were the nearly transparent daisy-shaped pasties over her nipples. She'd explained that the customers weren't paying to see the waitresses, so the manager 'made' them wear the pasties.
Starsky had raised his eyes to the heavens, and thanked somebody for that, at least.
Her short skirt was almost as transparent as the shirt, but at least it was black. Still, the outline of her (required, she hated them) G-string was clearly visible.
"Listen, David. I've gotta meet up with Candita and catch a cab. Are you done scowling at me? Can I go to work?"
Sighing heavily, Starsky rose to hold his niece to him., "Trini, I'm so sorry. If you ever had to do this for a living...I just worry 'bout you, is all."
Trini softened and returned the hug. "Hopefully, this is the last time I ever wear this. Don't worry so much about my outfit--worry about covering my ass in that bar."
Kissing the top of her head, he replied, "I wish I could cover your ass before you walk into that bar."
Hutch covered his mouth with his hand, but Starsky knew he was grinning hugely.
Candita and Trini arrived together, holding hands, much to the delight of one Luis Lancheros--owner and manager of "The Gladiator".
Leering at the two women, he laughed. "She talk to you and you don't care if you understand. She good for more than talking, eh?"
Flipping him the finger, Trini continued guiding Candita to the time clock.
Lancheros waited until Candita went into the kitchen before he approached Trini. "My pale one, do you still want make more money?"
"I'm singin' for my supper tonight, ain't I? I can always use more money."
"You are good business thinker. I have two special 'guests' coming tonight. One say he see you here last night, and he offer money to see you privately."
Hutchinson. That's my cue.
Looking at him through slightly squinted eyes, Trini pretended interest. "How much money?"
Roaring with laughter, Lancheros leaned closer to Trini and touched her breast. It took everything Trini had not to slap the fat man's hand away when he kneaded her flesh.
"Your girlfriend--she don't mind?"
"She knows I swing both ways--she does, too."
Thankfully, he dropped his hand. "Maybe I see about package deal? You two and guest?"
Trini shrugged. "If it's more for two of us, I say go for it."
Turning on her heel to get away, Trini had to fight the urge not to run to the safety backstage. That 'man' made her flesh crawl. Taking deep breaths to calm herself, Trini prayed, Please help us find these kids and destroy this guy. And, please keep us all safe. Thanks.
Starsky flashed a twenty at the guy at the door. "Tell Luis his guests are here."
The man jerked the bill away from Starsky, and read the message written on it. Lancheros always told his guests who required 'special services' to write a message of his choosing on the money--the bouncers were then told the daily message for 'safety'. Tonight's message was, "We are the champions."
Starsky had thought it was a good sign, and had told Hutch so. "See, pal. It's a sign of divine intervention. We're gonna win this one. Piece of cake."
Hutch seriously hoped he was right.
The guard pointed to the door, and grumbled, "Give this to the girl inside," as he shoved the twenty back at Starsky.
Once inside, Hutch commented, "Friendly chap."
Starsky was already scanning the room for Trini and Candita. "Yeah, well, we ain't here to make friends." Seeing Candita behind the serving counter, Starsky breathed a little easier. Still, he hadn't seen Trini yet.
Hutch tapped his friend on the arm, and motioned to the approaching visitor. "We've got company."
A tall girl approached them, wearing an even more revealing outfit than Trini's--this one didn't even include pasties or a G-string. The girl fairly purred when she greeted them. "Welcome, gentlemen. Could I see the message, please?"
Starsky handed her the bill.
Satisfied, the girl returned the money. "Right this way, gentlemen." She sat them at a table directly in front of the stage, and told them, "The owner will be right with you. Mr. Lancheros is personally overseeing your pleasure. Enjoy yourselves, gentlemen."
With that, she turned and signaled a waitress over. Both men ordered vodka martini's--drinks they never normally ordered, but that made them (they hoped) seem moneyed men.
As soon as the waitress walked off, Starsky leaned over to Hutch. "You seen Trini?"
"Calm down, Starsk. She's around her somewhere." Still, Hutch kept looking, too.
The men couldn't talk anymore. Their waitress was returning, and an MC had come up to the stage floor.
"Good evening," he started. "We are proud to present our latest acquisition: The lovely 'Sunshine'."
The lights dimmed and the MC quickly got off the stage.
Hutch recognized the music that had started, and he smiled--"Hair." Oh, I get it. Let the sunshine in...tacky, tacky, tacky.
The girl who called herself "Sunshine" came up to the front of the stage and started her act. She was far too big-busted for Hutch's taste, but he played along--helping Starsky stuff twenties where he didn't even want to touch. When Sunshine was finally done, she departed the stage--jiggling all the way.
Hutch casually looked around and wondered again where Trini was.
Suddenly, the MC was back, "Tonight, we have a special treat for all you music lovers. We have one of our lovely ladies up here for your listening pleasure. Take it away, my dear."
The lights dimmed again, and a band started to play.
For a dirtball, this guy tries to play classy, Hutch thought.
A strong, clear voice came out of the darkness, and Hutch tried hard to remember where he'd heard the song before. Then it came to him: an action movie a couple years back. One Maggie was pissed about seeing, but her precious foreign film had been sold out. What was the name of that movie? Oh yeah: "Con-Air." This song had played at the end, and Hutch had thought it was beautiful then.
Whoever's singing this ain't half bad. Too bad she's stuck in a shithole like this.
The spotlight was beginning to come on--slowly, teasingly--starting on the girl's high-heeled covered feet. It continued to climb up the stool she sat on, revealing a little more every inch. Finally, the light lit up the whole stage--revealing the girl completely.
For the second time that night, Hutch's mouth dropped open.
There, on the stage in that outfit--made even more transparent by a spotlight--was Trini.
Once he got over his own shock, Starsky nodded at Trini. "She ain't bad, huh?"
Hutch nodded then continued to listen in earnest, watching Trini closely.
Starsky added, "Kindered spirits, pal?"
Hutch just grunted, and continued to pay close attention to Trini. He could tell she was uncomfortable--she had her eyes closed, blocking out the crowd. Hutch knew that feeling too well. He loved to play his guitar and sing at home, but people staring at you while you did it--that was another thing entirely.
The end of the song was closing in, and Trini rose to finish. Opening her eyes, she found Hutch in the crowd.
He was a little overwhelmed when she directed the words at him: "...if you ever leave. Baby you would take away everything--need you with me..."
Hutch took a long drink off the previously forgotten martini.
The stage went black and Hutch was abruptly brought back to reality by the wolf-whistles and lewd comments of the other 'patrons'.
Starsky pointed at the stage. "You're supposed to be enjoying yourself. Stop scowling." Hutch hadn't even realized he had been, but Starsky made a mental note of it. Was he being overprotective of Trini, or merely disgusted by fellow members of the species? Starsky didn't have any more time to evaluate Hutch, though--Lancheros was moving towards them, arms open in welcome.
"Gentlemen, you like?"
Starsky looked down his nose at the man, and shrugged. Hooking a thumb at Hutch he stated, "More his speed. I was looking for something 'special'."
The fat man nodded eagerly. "Oh yes, sir. I have arranged a private viewing for later. For now--eat--drink. We do business soon."
When Lancheros returned later, he'd asked Hutch if he was interested in Candita joining the "party." Hutch had readily agreed--that would work out even better. Everyone would be together--safer that way.
Good thinkin' Trini. That's my girl.
Starsky and that pig named Luis had then gone off to talk business at the bar, and Starsky was flashing money at the gross, round man. Finally, a price was agreed on and Starsky returned to the table. Pretending to drop his wallet, he bent close to Hutch and whispered, "Showtime."
The adrenaline was pumping full force now, and Hutch was ready. Starsky looked like he was carelessly lounging, but Hutch knew better. He was watching the bouncers on the north side--Hutch kept track of the south side. Neither man wanted any of them close to the hangar when they made their move. There was gonna be enough to deal with already, without more pistol-packin' bouncers in the way.
Trini made her way to Hutch's side and snuggled up to him, seductively rubbing her hand inside his shirt. She winked at him, then continued, "Hey, Tiger. I hear we're gonna have us a little quality time."
Hutch nodded and pulled Trini onto his lap.
"Oh, a man who takes charge. I like that."
She wiggled a little on his lap, and Hutch pressed his lips to her ear, pretending to kiss it. "Stop that!" he hissed.
Blinking innocently, Trini asked him, "Did I do something wrong, sugar?"
Hutch gently, but firmly moved Trini off his lap. He'd put her there for appearances, but the closeness had turned out to be...well, uncomfortable. Especially when the girl had to wiggle.
"Go find Candita. Now."
Lancheros came up and looked at Starsky. "You are ready, sir?"
Starsky rose and motioned for Hutch to follow.
Lancheros silently led the men to a back exit, then stopped to wait for Trini and Candita. The two women came up holding hands, as usual, but this time it wasn't just for show--it was for support.
Shaking his head, Lancheros poked a fat finger at Hutch. "You sure gonna enjoy these two--they put on a show for you." Lancheros laughed, then motioned for a man to join them.
Hutch pulled Trini to him and gave her a little squeeze of reassurance. To a pervert like Lancheros, it looked like Hutch couldn't wait to touch Trini, suiting their plan just fine.
Lancheros leered at the men. "Come. We take you someplace private."
Starsky walked ahead of the others with Lancheros, while the man followed closely behind them all.
Candita let go of Trini's hand and moved to Hutch's available side, whispering to him in Spanish. "I saw the kids here today. There's one door off the back."
Hutch's nod was so slight the man behind them didn't even notice.
Having crossed the back lot to the plane hangar, Lancheros stopped in front of a large metal door and knocked twice. A metal scraping metal noise indicated some sort of movement inside, so Trini began to rub her arms as if cold.
That' s your signal, Huggy. Hope you're watchin'.
Trini turned back in time to follow Candita inside. The man with them looked at Trini, then to Lancheros. "You want me to stay in here and watch them?"
Shooing the man away with his hands, Lancheros yelled at him, "Go! We are fine."
The man stepped outside, but continued to watch Trini carefully.
"You bust him or somethin'?" Hutch whispered.
"Yeah. Busted his balls once," Trini whispered back, "I believe he's much more interested in me, than I am him."
Hutch nodded. "I see."
Lancheros had now led them to the far end of the hangar, and was stopping again. He did his customary two knocks, and the door was barely opened--just enough that everyone had to turn sideways to get through.
Trini started to follow the others, but grabbed Lancheros by the arm instead. Pulled him off to one side she demanded, "Where the hell am I supposed to work? All I see in there are a bunch of sniveling brats! I need somewhere to take care of Blondie."
Lancheros pulled his arm away from Trini and smiled nastily. "Greedy bitch. I get you private spot."
Lancheros pushed the door open wider to accommodate his girth, and pulled Trini in behind him. Pushing her at Hutch, he pointed to a small door leading into what must be the sleeping quarters.
"She can't wait. Take her in there, then we deal more later."
Trini was so proud that their plan was working, she almost skipped to the door. She hastily moved into the room, then pulled Hutch in behind her, eliciting several rude comments from the men outside.
As soon as the door shut, Trini raced to their only door to the outside world, and started working on the lock. It only took a few seconds, then Trini opened the door a little and whispered, "We're clear here. I need the flashlight."
Hutch left his post at the opposite door to take her the light.
Quickly she shot three short beams into the darkness. "Shit, I hope they see this." She put the flashlight in the waistband of her skirt, then held her hand out to Hutch for her revolver. "Thanks. Now we gotta kill a couple minutes."
Reaching over, she began to undo Hutch's belt. He quickly placed his hand on hers.
"Come on, Ken," she teased, " I ain't gonna rape ya'. We just gotta make it look real."
Pointing a finger at her, Hutch directed, "I'll do mine--you do yours."
Trini winked at him, "Party pooper."
When Trini came out of the room, she looked properly tosseled and now had on Hutch's jacket--seemingly to keep her warm.
Smiling at Lancheros, she held out her hand.
He slapped it away. "Later!" he hissed.
Trini held up her hands in defeat. "Fine, fine."
Then, turning to the row of kids lined up against the wall, she asked, "He find what he's lookin' for?"
To anyone who didn't know him well, it looked like Starsky was slowly moving from child to child inspecting them. Trini knew better, though.
Hutch had taught Starsky to say some words of comfort to the children, and that's what he was now doing. Starsky would get down on his knees in front of each scared child, and talk quietly to them while running a comforting hand over their heads. After he'd made his way down the line of children, he came back to where Trini and Lancheros were standing.
Looking towards Trini, he told her, "Your girlfriend speaks Spanish. Tell her to go ask who wants to live with me."
Trini shrugged her shoulders, then walked to Candita and whispered, "We need to move now. Get the kids ready."
Guiding Lancheros by the arm to talk 'business', Starsky led him away from the children so Candita could speak more freely.
Trini made her move to the lone guard at the door, and began to rub her hand on his crotch in small circles. Leaning close to the man, she whispered, "He can't get it up. Care to help a girl out?"
Checking to see if Lancheros was watching--seeing he wasn't--the man nodded. Trini let him lead her into a dark room that must've been used as an office once. She turned and quietly locked the door.
"We gotta make this quick, so get your pants off."
The man sat down on the bed to undress as Trini pulled her revolver out of Hutch's pocket. Pressing the barrel to his head, she whispered, "Make one sound and you're dead. Lay down and roll over."
Trini quietly unlocked the door and went back to join the others, motioning for Candita to start moving the children to Hutch.
Lancheros glared at Trini as she walked by the chair Starsky had tied him to.
"You're a very bad man," she told him. "What? No witty retort? Oh, sorry. That gag must suck."
Candita and Hutch were trying to talk quickly to the children, while Starsky and Trini stood guard.
Hutch came back in to talk to Starsky after all the children were at the exit. "It looks clear. We gotta go."
Starsky nodded and followed Hutch. "Trini, let's go," he whispered and ran to hold the door for Hutch.
The plan was going well, except for one thing: the sick girl could barely stand, and running was out of the question.
Trini looked at the two men. "We'll stick to the plan as close as we can: Candita goes with the first group--we cover. Hutch goes with the next group--David and I cover. David, you'll have to carry her and I'll stay and cover."
Seeing both men ready to argue. She shook her head. "No time. Go."
Candita took off with the first set of children while the three officers covered her and waited for signs of conflict. None came, and a moment later, Hutch took his group across the darkened desert.
Quietly, Trini slipped off her heels, and got ready to move. Starsky gently picked up the sick girl, then turned to Trini and whispered, "Be careful. I love you."
She nodded and smiled. "Ditto. Now go."
Starsky took off running low to the ground, and headed for the cover of the cactus. He was almost there when the first shot rang out. Trini spun and shot in the direction the bullets came from, then ran to the generator house for better cover--and to draw fire off Starsky and the girl. Trini knew by the barrage of gunfire that was starting she couldn't get away. Closing her eyes for a moment, she sent out a message to her uncle.
I told you I'd be safe and it'd be O.K.--I didn't mean to lie to you.
Taking a deep breath she picked up the flashlight and again signaled three times. This one means I can't make it. You guys know what to do. Trini began to cry a little. She never even got to say goodbye.
Hutch was helping load the last child in the van when he saw the flashes. "No," he whispered.
Starsky hadn't seen the flashes, but he'd heard Hutch. Both men immediately took off running back across the desert.
When they got back to the hangar, Hutch saw Trini was trapped, and people were moving in on her. He started to move, but Starsky pulled him down and pointed up. "We got reinforcements, buddy."
Hutch looked skyward at the approaching helicopters. Hutch was relieved to see Starsky had a backup plan. Some things had changed for the better!
Starsky had started to move closer so Trini could see him, and began to cover her with gunfire. Trini started to run towards him, but quickly yelped and stumbled in pain.
Hutch pointed at her shooter and fired--it gave him great pleasure to see the man buckle over.
Starsky had bravely (foolishly) run to help Trini, and Hutch was doing his best to cover two targets now.
A noise behind Hutch made him turn.
Huggy had driven Starsky's new SUV through the cactus and gulleys to help get Trini. The helicopters now seemed to have the situation under control, and the getting was good--thanks to Huggy. The three officers barely had time to crawl in before Huggy was driving away.
Starsky patted Huggy's arm. "Thanks, Hug. You're the best."
Huggy didn't acknowledge Starsky, so he tried again. "Huggy. I'm tryin' to thank you, here."
Huggy looked at Starsky, then quickly back to the road. "Am I still black, or did this little adventure turn me white?"
Hutch was too busy tending to Trini to laugh.
"I'm O.K., Ken. Just a scratch."
He pushed her hand away from the wound and snapped at her, "Yeah. All scratches bleed like this."
Starsky nonchalantly asked, "Hey, Huggy. You think we could stop by a hospital along the way? Trini's messin' up my upholstery."
"Sure Starsky. And while we're there, I'm gonna find me a doctor, too. I need to know if I got any brains left after bein' with you cats."