Spike (スパイク, Supaiku) worked as a sniper for the Lemures in 1931. He acted upon the instructions of their leader, Goose Perkins, in order to take over the Flying Pussyfoot and blackmail Senator Manfred Beriam into freeing Huey Laforet.
Thanks to Felix Walken, Spike is now blind, and thus unable to use a gun. After recovering from his ordeal he enters into the employ of Senator Manfred Beriam and starts training Sonja Bake in the ways of sharpshooting, essentially using her for his own gains.
Appearance[edit | edit source]
Spike has menacing eyes, defined by two sharp wrinkles in the middle of his forehead. His black hair is spiked at the nape of his neck. Sideburns frame either side of his face, making their way down to a goatee which reaches just below his lower lip. Spike wears the regular attire of a Lemur - a black tuxedo, white shirt and black bow tie.
Thanks to his ordeal on the Flying Pussyfoot, his skin is heavily scarred. He wears a black eye mask over his blinded eyes, with a white reticule stitched in its center, and uses two white canes to navigate.
He wears a long black trenchcoat regularly.
Personality[edit | edit source]
Spike is an unpleasant man who speaks and acts coarsely towards others. He shows no remorse for his victims regardless of their age, so nonchalant as to whistle while doing his dirty work. Judging from his comments, he doesn't have a very respectable attitude towards women.
As a sniper, he is able to keep his eyes and trigger finger steady even when shaken by unease or fear.
He is prone to blustering and easily confident - but not above running like the wind when he is reunited with Claire in 1934.
Chronology[edit | edit source]
1931-1932[edit | edit source]
In the weeks leading up to the train heist, Spike is approached by fellow Lemur Nader Schasschule - who informs him of his plan to betray Goose and defect to the Russo Family. Spike agrees to be part of Nader's traitorous plot, and aids him in setting up the betrayal of all the Lemures against Goose Perkins. Secretly, Spike and around thirty other Lemures are still loyal to Goose, and intend to undermine Nader's uprising.
Around noontime on December 29, 1931, Spike is among over fifty Lemures who gather in an abandoned factory per Goose's orders. During the meeting, Nader attempts and fails to lead his uprising against Goose's faction. After Chané Laforet cleaves Nader's right hand and his allies are murdered, Goose ties him up, welds the doors shut and destroys all the factory's spare vehicles. The Lemures make their getaway in their own cars, stopping about three hundred meters away from the factory. Goose orders Spike to "aim for that white box at the factory entrance." Spike takes out his sniper rifle and complies with enthusiasm. After he shoots the box, it catches fire. A minute later, the factory implodes as the Lemures are driving away. Goose and Spike joke around while the factory burns.
Almost two weeks later, Spike and Lemures board the Flying Pussyfoot on the evening of December 30, smuggling their weapons aboard in the guise of orchestra instruments (posing as the Chicago Paysage Symphony Orchestra). Spike joins Goose and a few others in their First Class cabin where he sends messages to the other Lemures in Second and Third Class cabins under Goose's orders via telegraph.
Goose, Spike, and the others later receive word that their Lemures had lost in a fight against the "White Suits." Goose issues orders to his men and wonders out loud if this is all a 'test.' Spike replies that he doesn't think this "mission" will be that easy. Goose and a few men later depart to retrieve Natalie Beriam and her daughter Mary from the dining car. While they're gone, Spike continues monitoring the Lemures with the telegraph, only to lose contact with their three men looking after the equipment in the freight hold.
Once Goose and the others return with Natalie (but not Mary) - Goose looks to an uneasy Spike and asks him what's going on. Spike informs him of the situation, and wonders if maybe the "White Suits got 'em." Goose sends three men to go investigate, and afterwards realizes that Chané is gone. According to Spike she left to go hunt down some of the White Suits, taking a couple weapons with her. This is fine with Goose, who tells Spike that she needs to do as much of their work as possible now - after all, she "won't live to see tomorrow afternoon."
Suddenly, one of their men from the freight hold contacts them with a crackling radio transmission. Spike scrambles for the dials to clear up the static, knowing that any communication via radio signaled an emergency. The panicking Lemur tells Spike that he needs backup now; the other two Lemures have disappeared and are probably dead. Spike asks if it's the White Suits, and the Lemur emphasizes that "that thing" cannot possibly be human and hence not a White Suit. They hear the man scream over the radio, followed by machine gun fire. Spike automatically covers his ears with his hands at the noise, only for the gunfire to cease. They hear the sound of something thumping to the floor, and a quiet groan which fades quickly into silence that is broken by the sounds of footsteps walking through the blood of their fallen ally. Goose orders one of the men to call back the three Lemures they'd just sent off to the freight hold.
Over two hours later, Spike camps out in the coupling between two cars, waiting for trouble. His wait in the cold pays off when he witnesses Chané fight Ladd Russo, and spots Nice Holystone and Nick watching them too. With his gun trained on them both, he snickers and tells the two to come down with their hands up.
Goose orders Spike to go after Rachel on the rooftops several hours later, and to afterwards kill Chané. Spike apprehends Rachel on the roof, shooting her in the thigh. Too late to have stopped her from rescuing Natalie and Mary, he asks her snidely to move so that he can shoot Mary's leg.
Afterwards, Spike remains on standby on the rooftop. Through the scope of his sniper, he can see two silhouettes in the distance - Chané and the Red Shadow (Claire). He shoots Chané in her shoulder, and then trains his gun on Claire, waiting for him to finish Chané off. Much to his consternation, Claire does not go after Chané and instead heads his way, causing Spike to mutter in low panic at his movements. In spite of Spike's unnerved words his eyes and trigger finger are "deadly calm," as Claire is running in a straight line and not weaving from sign to sign. Spike takes aim and pulls the trigger, only for Claire to evade the shot, and then the next. and the next, and the next. Spike, incredulous, wonders out loud if the man can see his finger move and pulls the trigger again - only to hear a click.
Out of ammo, Spike starts to feel true fear and puts aside his sniper rifle in favor of the Lewis Automatic Machine Gun (which spews out bullets at a rate of five hundred rounds per minute). Faced with a multitude of bullets, Claire rolls off the roof of the dining car and disappears. Spike attempts to whistle, but finds he cannot due to his teeth chattering. Alert for danger, Spike aims his machine gun at the spot where Claire fell, but when he fails to reemerge Spike sighs in relief and his heartbeat returns to normal. Looking over to the freight cars, he sees Chané sitting in the spot where he'd shot her, alive. Full of irritation, he attempts to aim his scope at her in order to land the killing shot, only to remember he's using a Lewis gun and not a sniper rifle.
Cursing himself for being "really off today," he takes out his sniper rifle and prepares to reload - only to realize his reloader is missing. Thinking he left it back by the coupling, he climbs down from the roof and moves to retrieve the reloader only for a "dark red arm" to reach out from under the train and take hold of his right hand. The arm drags Spike under before he can even scream; in the moments before he hits the ground, Spike spots "the red silhouette" clinging to the machinery under the cars, and realizes that this was the reason they'd never spotted the man before. Then Spike receives a blow to his head, and falls unconscious. Once Claire is done with Spike, he drops him off the train and leaves for the engine room.
Spike lies heavily injured by the side of the tracks until he is discovered by Pamela, Lana, and Sonja Bake. The women take him to a nearby doctor (possibly Fred) for treatment, and wait for him to regain consciousness. Upon waking, he is greatly unsettled to learn that he is now blind. Once he calms down, he offers the women a proposal: since they'd already helped him out once, would they mind taking him somewhere? If "all goes well" the four of them should earn some decent money. Lana agrees immediately, and though Pamela is reluctant she decides to go along since Spike is injured. (This all takes place in 1932).
On the way to Spike's destination they meet with Sonja, who is returning from her daily shooting practice. Spike pipes up and asks her if the noise he'd heard was her shooting off a Villar-Perosa, complimenting her on a "top-notch weapon." Spike's ears are on the mark - Sonja is indeed using a Villar-Perosa M1915. Sonja is delighted to meet someone with a common interest in guns, having felt bereft of a conversation partner since her parents had died. Spike learns that while Sonja has been firing guns for a long while now, she's never been trained as a sharpshooter before.
Needing a diversion to help him overcome the shock of losing his sight, Spike becomes Sonja's mentor and begins training her, relying on sound and assessing the results of her shooting in order to see through her idiosyncrasies. At time passes, Spike no longer sees her as a diversion and becomes more and more serious about training her in his own sharpshooting technique. The four reach the town where Senator Manfred Beriam is and end up "involved in several incidents" there ... and settle there too.
The four work their way into the employ of the senator. Pamela and Lana become housekeepers for the Senator's estate while Spike and Sonja work as his gunmen, accompanying him on 'business traps.' More accurately, Sonja does the shooting with Spike commanding her. Manfred assures Pamela that he hasn't had Sonja kill anyone, and everything she does is for the sake of the state.
1933[edit | edit source]
In September, Spike waits outside a window of Manfred's study while Hong Chi-Mei is confronted by The Former Felix Walken. ]As Chi prepares to strike the assassin, Spike shoots through the window (shattering the glass) and nails him in his shoulder. Manfred emerges from the shadows to interrogate the incapacitated Chi, and Spike knocks on the window to speak with Manfred. Manfred thanks him, and Spike - with a smile that stretches the scars on his face - says he would prefer money to a thank you. Manfred ignores him, and returns his attention to Chi. After he's finished with the man, Spike and his colleague drag Chi out of the study.
1934[edit | edit source]
In winter, Manfred orders Spike to go find Chané and ask her "a few questions." Spike heads to Madison Square Park, and with a white cane in either hand and his black mask over his eyes, approaches a park bench upon which Chané is sitting. When he is five yards away from her he stops and sneers, "you reached for your knife just now, didn't you?" He is correct, and he laughs raucously. Stroking his goatee, he grins - who would have thought a fanatic like Chané would be sitting "here in this park, all lost in thought, pretty as you please like a goddamn painting?"
As Chané sits there wondering how she should react to a specter from her past, Spike continues speaking out loud in his typical crass manner, 'wondering' what sort of expression the daughter of Huey Laforet could have as she "stares at [him] like a goddamn idiot." Maybe she'd fallen in love with him at first sight with a blush and tear-filled eyes, though someone frigid like her isn't his type - he prefers the type who squirm.
Chané reaches for her knife, and Spike spreads his arms wide as he asks her not to. Sure, the two had had their problems in the past, but let bygones be bygones - after all, he isn't here to kill her. Not today, at least. He informs her he's here on his boss' orders - he's supposed to ask Huey's daughter some questions and come back with the answers. Although, come to think of it - how is he supposed to get answers from Chané in the first place? She can't talk and he can't see. He considers braille, but he supposes the "easiest way to do it'd be..."
As Spike talks, Chané pulls out her knives and rockets toward him, preparing to strike. He continues: "...to call an interpreter, right?" and laughs as she approaches. In the next instant, she is flying through the air. Recovering before she hits the ground, she whirls around in confusion, noting that he hadn't moved one inch from his spot. It's only then that she sees The Former Felix standing behind him. Spike lets out a whistle of appreciation. "Whew. Did you just throw that little rascal right over my head? I gotta say, Felix my friend, you're really something."
Chané tenses at the name Felix, recognizing it as the new name of her beloved Claire. The man sighs at Spike's use of the name, and Spike counters - so what if he'd sold his name? What else was Spike supposed to call him? Really, the man ought to consider others - sure, he probably wanted to put his past behind him, but look how well that turned out. The Former Felix turns to Chané and says that there's really only one thing they want to know, and after she answers they'll let her go - "and turn a blind eye to your friends to" cackles Spike. Spike couldn't believe it when he'd heard that Chané had thrown in her lot with "that tattooed brat" who'd thrown a wrench in the Lemures' plans a few years back. Then again, Spike doesn't really have a grudge against him, since thanks to him Spike's now working a job that pays a lot better than Huey ever did.
The Former Felix cuts Spike off and asks Chané their question: what exactly is her father going to attempt to do in New York? The narrative then cuts away.
When the narrative returns to the park, Spike says that they'd appreciate it if Chané would follow them without causing any trouble. Chané grits her teeth, processes the situation, and refuses. The former Felix sighs, removes his hands from his pockets, and takes one step toward her. She prepares to take the initiative in the attack but hesitates when ten men wearing dour black suits and glaring at her enter her field of vision. Spike hears their footsteps and calls out to them, confirming that Chané is the target. Spike's confidence takes a hit when one of the men informs him that there's a problem and that they'd heard something on the radio. Spike, his smile gone, holds up a hand in consternation and says that there's "one pair of feet too many."
The former Felix catches Spike's meaning and pinpoints one of the men as an intruder. Spike notices next, and frowns, asking the man's identity. The man answers "you want to know who I am? Sure, I'll give you an answer." He loops an arm around Chané's shoulders and continues: "I'm....me." Silence falls over Spike and his men, and Spike sneers, accusing the man of being a "joker" playing at being a movie hero saving the damsel in distress "at just the right moment." His attempt to get a rise out of the man fails, and the man smiles sheepishly at Chané. "Of course it was the right moment. I was watching this whole time."
The man explains that he was looking forward to this so much that he got here "real early." When he saw Chané illuminated in the sunlight, he thought she looked so pretty he just couldn't intrude. At Chané's blush and glare, the man laughs "don't say that, Chané. I swear I'm telling the truth. You were beautiful, honest." The man continues responding to non-uttered words and Spike - who knows Chané isn't speaking and that she isn't using sign language - figures that he's being toyed with. He snarls at the man to "stop talking for just a goddamn second" and slams his cane against the ground, warning him that if he doesn't scram now they'll kill him. The man glibly accuses him of tripping over his words. Surely Spike had meant to say that the man was going to kill them, right?
Spike isn't used to being matched bluster for bluster and grits his teeth, sensing that the man is dangerous (he thinks to himself that he hears warning sirens in his head just at the sound of his voice). Spike breaks into a cold sweat and waits for the others to make the first move for him, except the former Felix remains where he is and the subordinates are hesitating, waiting for orders. Taking this into account, Spike tells himself that he'll have to calm down and take the initiative. With a "massive effort' Spike pushes down his unease and tells the intruder he no longer cares and that he might as well tell him his name so they can talk, not really expecting a straight answer. To his surprise, the man answers promptly, introducing himself as Felix Walken (Claire).
Spike and the others turn to stare at the man they know as Felix in confusion, only for him to frown and look away. The new Felix Walken isn't finished - apparently he's Chané's fiancé to boot. The narrative cuts away to other events.
When the narrative returns to the park, the men have surrounded Claire and Chané, and Claire, unhappy that they "made Chané cry" tells them that he'll just have to punch them in the eyes until they cry as much as she did. Spike, bewildered, asks him what he's talking about - who's crying? Chané's soul, that's what, or so Claire says. Asking for help. If Spike can't hear her, well of course he can't - only Claire can hear Chané's soul. Spike is flabbergasted and queries if Claire will ever say anything that makes sense and how much opium had he smoked today, exactly? Claire ridicules the concept that he'd need drugs to be able to hear Chané's soul - all he has to do is sharpen his senses.
Spike scoffs and turns to the former Felix, asking him if he really sold his name "to this wacko" and if that means he's an assassin as well. The former Felix sighs, turns away, and refuses to answer. Claire stares curiously at Spike and says that he's finally remembered who he is. Spike's brow furrows - the man has been sounding off warning klaxons in his head for some time now. Claire's next words are damning: "You're that sniper from the train." The warning bells in Spike's head reach fever pitch as all his confidence crumbles in an instant. Claire continues. "Huh. Gotta say, even in my business it's not every day you see someone make it after they get dropped face first off a train."
Spike stammers and recoils. Tightening his grip on his canes, he orders his men to retreat. The men hesitate - to them, there's no reason to retreat since they outnumber their two targets easily. Turning, Spike accuses them of being deaf and repeats his order, telling them he'll explain later. He bolts off with a speed that belies his blindness, and the men in black dutifully follow. Claire cracks his neck and follows after them, only for the former Felix to pick him up and hoist him into the air.
As the two talk, Spike and his men reach their cars and soon start up their engines.
1935[edit | edit source]
In February 1935, Pamela drives down a road with Lana in the passenger's seat and Sonja and Spike in the back. Spike mutters about all the birds out and about, listening to them cawing from outside the window. Sonja exclaims at the sight of the birds, noting that she doesn't recognize what kind they are. Spike tells her she should imagine shooting all of them down - even if it's all in her head, it's still good experience. Sonja enthusiastically complies.
Pamela coldly interjects, stating that she hopes Spike isn't making her imagine killing a living creature because he wants her to someday kill an actual person. Spike smirks, replying: "I dunno. It depends, sometimes you gotta shoot people. Who or what you shoot hanges with the situation. If you don't want her killing people, take it up with Beriam, not me."
Lana pipes up with a nonsensical idea - since birds like shiny objects, they should train birds to pick up jewels and other baubles that people drop and "make a killing!" Ignoring Pamela's sarcastic reply, she wonders if the birds would pick up chips if they sent them into a casino. Spike ask what brought the car trip on - does Pamela want to "get in on" the casino party at Ra's Lance, perhaps? Pamela answers that she'd once "won big" at a casino (she refrains from telling him she'd cheated) so she thought she'd try her luck again for old time's sake (she also refrains from mentioning that she wants to earn enough money to escape from Manfred's clutches).
As Lana exclaims in shock, Spike points out that there's going to be a lot of the Mafia at the party and a heck of a lot of people who don't think kindly towards Beriam - and by proxy, probably his employees. Housekeepers included. Sonja cheerfully exclaims that they shouldn't worry, for "if anything happens, I know Nader will come save me." Spike's jaw drops, and he bursts into laughter. "Oh, that's a good one! Your boyfriend Nader's gonna come swooping down into a building filled with Mafia, takin' 'em out left and right like a goddamn hero of justice!" Sonja nods happily, and Spike laughs even harder, announcing that that's nothing like the Nader he is familiar with. But after his laughter dies down, Spike thinks back on Nader and muses that he'd never show up somewhere as dangerous as a casino party full of Mafia in the first place – although, then again, he might. After all, he was always good at locating the "heavyweights" and brownnosing like anything. Still, "a two-bit loser like him wouldn't even last the night."
Abilities[edit | edit source]
Spike is an excellent sniper, using a black custom-made sniper rifle with an unusually long barrel to carry out his executions. His calm trigger finger and steady gaze in the face of danger are a testament to his skill.
He is knowledgeable enough when it comes to guns that he is able to recognize what gun Sonja is using by its sound alone.
After he loses his sight, Spike relies very much on his hearing, which becomes good enough that he is able to recognize that there is an unwelcome person in the midst of his men in 1934 by the number of footsteps alone.
Trivia[edit | edit source]
- None of the Lemures knew if "Spike" was even his real name - everything about him and his past was a mystery to them.