The year was 1929. Crime was at an all-time high, Al Capone and his mob ruled the city, but that didn’t scare Avery Stein. Her father, Stephen Stein, and she lived in poverty. They made a living by performing magic. While her father would steal the attention of the crowd, she, posing as one of the spectators, would steal their wallets. Over the years she picked up a few things by watching her father. She put on a little show for Benjamin Moretti, owner of the nearby theater. He was the closest thing Avery had to a friend, but he was a money launderer for the mob.
One fateful evening Avery and Stephen were doing their normal con when unbeknownst to either of them, they stole the wallet of none other than Frank Nitti. He was Al Capone's, right-hand man.
The next morning Avery woke up, she had no sight of her father. All she saw were tire tracks! They were leading out of the collection of cardboard which they called a house.
She grabbed a janky bicycle she found behind the theater and took off following the tire tracks from what appeared to be some sort of car. After two hours of biking, she found herself in an abandoned shipyard. With sorrow and horror, she saw her father's broken body in the middle of the shipyard. She dropped her bike and sprinted to where her father lay. Avery tried everything, begging her father,
“Dad! Wake up, please. Dad, I’ll do anything, just please wake up. Dad, we gotta go home.”
In her heart, Avery knew that he was not going to wake up. She placed a final kiss on his forehead and began examining the body. What she saw only enraged her further.
Both of his legs had been snapped like twigs with a part his bone protruding out of his shin and the second part still inside his leg. Each of his fingers was cut off. His chest had been beaten until it was black and blue. His face had been imprinted many times on both cheeks with Al Capone's infamous ring. She saw three bloody holes, one in each shoulder, and finally one in the brain she went closer to examine them and suddenly jumped back. They were gunshot wounds. Stephan Stein had been tortured to death.
Avery lay sobbing next to her father's mutilated body for hours. Eventually, she looked around her and noticed as dark clouds began to roll in. Finally, she laid a nearby tarp on his body and departed from the scene riding her bike to avoid the rain. When Avery arrived at her “House” she told her only friend what had happened. He gave her his condolences and apologized on behalf of Capone.
Avery met a restless night, later on, she couldn't fall asleep with each clap of thunder sounding like a gun. Inside Avery felt a fire that could only be extinguished by mounting Capone’s head on a pike for all to see.
She left the cardboard and went for a walk. As she turned her head she saw Benjamin, backed into a corner, as an enforcer from the mob yelling at him and jabbing his finger in his face. Suddenly, the enforcer pulled out a knife. In an instant, Avery leaped forward,
“You killed my father, but you will not kill my friend.”
She kicked the man's leg, causing him to drop the knife. Avery picked it up and without hesitation drove it deep into the man’s leg. She then ripped it out and buried it in his heart. His blood covered Avery’s hands and a pool was forming on the ground.
“What have you done!” shrieked Benjamin.
Avery replied “I just saved your life”
Benjamin and Avery walked back to his theater in silence. Avery began washing her hands. When they arrived Benjamin was the first to break it.
“I had the situation under control.”
“Like hell you did,” snapped Avery. “Now that you have the blood of a mob member on your hands…”
Benjamin’s voice began to break. “What?” Avery asked compassionately.
“They won’t stop hunting you until you’re dead. So I got you a train ticket to California and I’ll arrange for an agent to pick you up and place you in protective custody”
Avery already saw the destruction the mob could do and didn’t want to become the next victim. She ran home as fast as she could a packed an old duffel bag with all of her belongings. As she was about to leave for the train station, she ran over to the theater.
“Benjamin!” she cried.
“Yes?” he replied opening the door to let her into the theater.
“Benjamin, come with me!”
Benjamin insisted that he would only slow her down. While they were arguing, there was a soft knock at the door, but there was something peculiar about the knock. Instead of three short taps, the knock was intricate almost like a rhythm. Benjamin stopped talking immediately and ushered Avery to leave. She was thinking about putting up a fight but she saw the severity in his eyes. So Avery walked outside and listened and watched through a crack in the crumbling wall. What she heard was almost make-believe.
Avery watched as Benjamin approached the door with his hand on his hip as if he had a gun. She saw him open the door a crack to see his visitor, he then sighed a sigh of relief. A tall man, about 6’7” waltzed inside. He was wearing a black fedora, black aviator sunglasses, a black trench coat, a black tailored suit, that was paired with a pair of embroidered black oxford shoes. He had dirty blond hair and piercing blue eyes that she could see behind his glasses. She then heard Benjamin ask, “Can I help you?”
The man replied, “I would like a six o’clock ticket for Phantom of the Opera.”
Benjamin then proceeded to say “I was about to crack open the mob and take down Al Capone, but the neighbor got in the way, she killed a member and now they want her head.”
The man replied “Holy s***! How old was this girl?”
“Seventeen” Benjamin replied.
The man started thinking and then asked, “What happened to her?”
“I just sent her to California on the next train.”
The man then proceeded to say “No, we can use her as a young spy.”
“How?” Benjamin asked.
“First you can train her in secret, then she can get captured by the mob, and then she can either execute Al Capone or capture him.”
“I’ll see” replied Benjamin. The man made his way towards the door.
“Goodbye,” he said
“Arrivederci,” He replied.
As the door swung open Avery held her breath and ducked under two garbage cans to avoid detection. She then ran home to process what had just transpired. Avery had read a few books on espionage but never realized it was a real thing. From her experience, she then deduced that Benjamin was a spy sent in by the CIA to infiltrate the mob and take down Al Capone, and the man he had met with was his handler and he was checking in. Avery thought of what would happen to Benjamin or herself if they found out who he was. But she then thought about her deceased father and the horrible way he met his demise. Avery was willing to go undercover.
As Avery walked over to the theater, her mind racing, she saw Benjamin start his car. Avery realized that he was going to go get her. She broke into a sprint and stopped. At first, he was dismayed that she was still here, but decided to look past the defiance. Benjamin began talking but would stop and start over every sentence, but Avery knew what he was trying to say. She then informed him of how she had been eavesdropping on his conversation and how she has decided to take the job. Benjamin was dumbfounded. He then took a deep breath and said, “Avery, this is not a game. The line of work I’m in is very dangerous. If you are still willing, you cannot tell anyone anything. Do you understand?”
“Yep,” Avery said, a smile spreading across her face. Benjamin smiled for the first time in a long time,
“Let’s get started.”
For the next year, Benjamin trained Avery harder than any agent ever before. She learned Russian, Spanish, French, Italian, German, and Arabic. She became proficient in many different martial arts. She became an expert marksman and learned how to fight like a mobster. The whole time she was beaten over and over again, mentally and physically. Benjamin went from a friend to her nightmare.
After her year of living in shadows, she was ready. Benjamin's handler, Jonathan Felt, came back to Chicago to see her progress. After Jonathan gave his confirmation, he gave Avery a rabbit’s foot, a symbol of good luck and left. As Jonathan was boarding the plane Avery kept rubbing the rabbit’s foot, realizing this was her first present ever. Although her father had spent most of his money on food and clothes for her, they could barely scrape up money for anything else.
The plan was set into motion. Avery was to use her magic skills to become more than a street magician. While doing this she would attract the attention of the mob. She was to then get kidnapped, where Al Capone would confront her, where she is to say the code word, coffee, and Benjamin, along with a strike team would come in and roundup Al Capone and his gang of thugs.
After two weeks Avery got her first gig at a theater that was known for their mob activity. After her encore performance, she went back to her dressing room. She asked for confirmation over her comms if they were here and Benjamin confirmed. Just then she got a knock on her dressing room door, she answered it. She saw three men dressed in dark suits, one of them was holding a crate. All of a sudden the largest man shoved an old washcloth in her face. She immediately knew it was chloroform. She blacked out and fell into the crate.
She awoke three hours later in an abandoned meat packing factory. She sat in a grimy chair in an empty room. Blood soaked meat hooks dangle above her. Her hands and legs were tied to the chair with some rusty old barbed wire. The more she struggled, the more the wire dug into her skin. Blood seeped from her wrists and ankles. For her own safety, she stopped struggling. She sat in silence for hours. Then she heard a voice from the darkest corner of the room along with the sound of a door shutting. “Why?” the voice asked. Then the man behind the voice stepped into the light. “Why did you kill one of my men?” He asked again. The man was one of the most infamous gangsters of all time. Along with 10 armed goons, the man was Al Capone.
“I’m gonna ask you. One. Last. Time. Why did you kill one of my men.” He yelled. “He was gonna kill one of my friends and you already killed my father, and I had to step in” Avery replied and then spit in his face. “And all of this over coffee.” She added to signal the code word. Al Capone looked confused, She said coffee one more time, but there was still silence on the comms. Then Al Capone started laughing. “Was that the code-word?” He said in between laughs. Now it was Avery turn to look confused. He signaled for one of his men, and Benjamin and his strike team walked in, wearing shackles. Al Capone said, your friend Jonathan is very talkative when 200 million dollars on the line. With a sinking feeling in her stomach, she realized that Jonathan Felt was a dirty agent, sold them out, and now they were going to die.
Al Capone turned to Benjamin and kicked him onto his knees, and said:
“I trusted you, why?” Benjamin replied by telling him about their whole plan. Al Capone thought himself for a minute then shot Benjamin in the temple, killing him instantaneously followed by each member of the strike team.
“No!” Avery yelled into the night. She had just lost the last person that loved her. Avery’s blood began to boil, her body coursing with rage, she slipped out of her constraints and punched the nearest guard in the throat. As he gagged from loss of air, she picked him up and grabbed his weapon, a Glock 19. Using his body as a shield she fired two shots, eliminating two more guards, and ducked behind an overturned table as cover and finished the first guard, took the magazine from the other two guards dead bodies and reloaded. Al Capone slipped out of the room and came back with an LSAT, a military grade submachine gun. He began to start emptying the ammo clip at the table. Avery rolled away from the table and fired two shots at the guard closest to her, the first shot injured his foot causing him to fall flat on the ground the second shot put a bullet in his brain. He dropped a gun, a KSV pump action shotgun, She grabbed it and decimated three more guards. She was was out of ammo with her shotgun. She threw the KSV at one of the guards knocking him out, grabbed a knife from a nearby dead body, and dug into his sternum. She used her final bullet to kill another guard, she ran up to the last guard and snapped his neck. She grabbed the knife she buried in a guard's body, did a flip over Al Capone, and sliced the back of both of his knees. His white suit drenched with his blood.
Avery, covered in the blood of those she had killed, walked up to Al Capone. “Kill me, please” He begged “You don’t get off that easily” She replied. “I’m going to kill you the same way you killed my father” she added. She saw the fear creep into his eyes, and smiled.
“Nobody will hear your screams.”
First, she snapped both of his already sliced legs. Then she cut off each one his fingers, then she took his ring and punched him in his face until there were multiple imprints of it, then she beat his chest until it was an unnatural color, and fired two shots one in each shoulder. But when it came to delivering the final shot, she knew she was becoming the man she hated. She grabbed the knife, “This is for my father!” She yelled as she dug the knife into the fat thug's brain. She stood back and watched the life drain from his eyes, She placed a final kiss on his forehead and walked away.