Good morning, babies! Is that a weird one? I think I’ve pulled it out before. Okay, you know what? Let’s just move past it. Today we’re taking a look back at chapter fifteen of Bad Town For A Pretty Face: Miami. As always make sure you’ve read the chapter before you scroll down or you’ll be hit with quite a few spoilers!
We’re with Solana! For the last time in this story, actually. Sometimes there’s an importance to a character’s first and last chapters, and I would say in the next three chapters (which will be the last of the story!) there is, but in this case not so much. Her final appearance will mean something, like every character’s does, but not the chapter as a whole. We’re in a car Elvira stole that’s eerily similar to the old one, much to Solana’s chagrin. Honestly? I’m kinda with Elvira when it comes to an affection for nineties cars at the end of their lives (RIP my last Saturn), they have heart. They’re waiting for Candy, up late because she was moping: they’re clearly in the dark about that situation in Mirabelle’s apartment, but Candy’s so miserable lately they’re right regardless. There’s some questioning about her capability for the big mission, but Solana can’t worry about that right now and just insists that today of all days she has to be.
Candy exits the house with her cast replaced by a cane and Elvira does that thing where she inches up just as she tries to get in, an asshole move even when it’s not aimed at someone holding themselves up with a stick. I hope it’s not obvious that I kept forgetting Candy was shot in the leg. I went back and rewrote this and in chapter thirteen, which I mentioned then, and I have literally no excuse. Inez shooting Candy was one of the most important aspects of the climax! How could I forget that?
Anyways the girls are on their way to a small local airport to steal a plane (hm. . .) to get aboard the ship (hm. . .). Despite everything Candy’s still a little excited, because she still loves the thrill of the crime underneath all her drama. They get to the airport and part ways with Elvira, who will control security on the ground. She’s very blasé with finger guns but we know her well enough by now to figure she’s being purposefully cool to hide how big this is. She and Solana also get their smooches on, which is becoming normal for the group, though Candy still grumbles. You know she’ll keep doing it to the end of time!
Solana and Candy then proceed to hop a fence, rush a plane, throw three people out of it and take off. Not much to be said about that except how much I loved Solana’s complete lack of trust in her team when it came to flying that plane. And that Karen is everyone’s new favorite Bad Town character. Solana loves flying! It’s actually adorable. If she has a future after this story she’s getting a plane, I’ve decided. And she has a babysitter moment with Candy where she encourages her to commit the big heist, which is sweet. But what’s this? There’s a helicopter? Landing on the ship? That they’re? Landing on?
The hmms probably should have clued y’all in by now. Yes, Mirabelle and Solana planned two different heists that happen at the same time, on the same day, on the same ship. I had this planned from get-go: a flare up of competition to really set Mirabelle off and threaten to skyrocket the already high tensions between the groups. Not that they notice at the moment: they assume there’s been an emergency onboard and the chopper is just first responders. Solana proceeds to land the plane by coasting it down the length of the ship, which I think is a cool visual, and the pair runs towards the bridge, the room where the captain stands and commands the ship.
Here’s where our problems begin: because this whole operation was
- Crazy rushed
- Poorly researched
- A huge overreach to the point where proper research was impossible to do anyway
Solana doesn’t anticipate the pushback she gets from the captain. It’s sort of obvious when you think about it, of course they’d have anti-terrorist/smuggler/pirate training as the caretakers of nearly two thousand people on one boat, but that hadn’t really crossed Solana’s mind. And now that it has she and Candy are being bombarded by a persistent security guard while Elvira’s screaming at them through the walkie-talkies. Specifically she’s warning them that ‘they’re here.’ Y’all know who that is!
A lot of yelling ensues. They’re both shooting at the security guard. Solana can’t get the captain or any of the crew to operate the ship. Candy’s thinking about Shay. Elvira’s in danger, out of sight and too far for either to help. It’s a lot and the mood is absolutely chaotic. Decisions are made: they need to convince (read: threaten) the men in the boiler room to get the ship moving, so Candy has to go. Elvira has to keep doing her job regardless of whether or not Drew and Inez are poking around. Solana has to negotiate with the captain.
Before Candy goes she asks Solana what she’s going to do about Mirabelle, her point clear: she still feels so much sympathy for her, being her girlfriend’s boss and someone she’s come to like and respect despite their differences and rivalry. Even after all the screaming and crying in her apartment a few days prior she still has tremendous love and respect. Solana’s feeling that they’re in over their heads, and only answers “I have to do something,” which reveals the obvious about this character; she loves Candy and doesn’t want to hurt her; she feels there’s no other choice in this long war she’s trapped herself in; she has a begrudging respect for Mirabelle; she doesn’t want to kill her either. With all this action going on there’s hardly a moment to throw in the characters’ sympathy for each other, so when it’s there ya gotta make it count.
Candy runs off, dejected but understanding, and Mirabelle shows up moments later to take out the guard. Both are pretty surprised to see the other, and we get one of the most satisfying tropes of all time: the What Are You Doing Here Oh What A Wacky Misadventure This Is trope. Typically involves yelling “YOU!?” speaking in unison (“I DIDN’T KNOW YOU’D BE HERE!”) and finally, dumbfounded, furious realization. Bonus points if one character finishes the other character’s sentence (“So we chose to steal the exact same ship—” “On the exact same day.”). So satisfying! Definitely one of the best tropes out there, and I’m starting to realize that the point of writing this story was to have a Romeo and Juliet storyline and for this moment to occur. Look what a love for tropes can get you!
There’s a brief showdown between the two, leader vs. quasi-leader. Solana’s already in the bridge with a gun pointed at Mira, so she has the upper hand, but clearly there’s more to Mirabelle’s decision not to lift her weapon against her. She tells her “this isn’t over” (tropes, babey!) and runs off, leaving Solana with a few thoughts. She didn’t really want to shoot Mirabelle, though at some point in the day, with a war waging, she might just have to. And though she doesn’t think it, we know Mirabelle didn’t really want to shoot her. We’re left with one final thought this chapter — that this plan was doomed from the start. It feels true, doesn’t it? The challenge was insane and horrifically rushed and lead to a lot of hurt before it even began (cough cough Drew grazing Shay with a shot then Mirabelle kidnapping her cough). Try to remember those words, kiddos, because they’ll be back.
That’s all for this chapter folks, tune in next time for number sixteen!