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All characters are 18 years old. A switch of perspective for this part of the story, I didn’t want to switch first person narratives and maybe confuse you, the reader. I hope you enjoy as I tie Louis’ story to that of another popular character in my universe, Jon Masters. It made sense and this way I can rekindle the Evil Bitch storyline. Feel free to throw suggestions my way or comment and tell me if you like the cross over or not.
Smoke and Mirrors:
The explosions rocked the facility and Lily took cover beneath her sleeping cot. It wasn’t much protection if the ceiling collapsed but it was better than nothing. The lights flickered and went out. Her world was plunged into darkness and silence. She wasn’t sure how much time passed but sickly red lights came to life and illuminated the room.
“Emergency lighting,” she whispered. “Where the hell am I?”
She waited but her captor never came for her. She crawled to the steel door and reached up for the handle. She hesitated a few times but finally took ahold and twisted. The door opened into a dimly lit hallway. Just like her room the hall was illuminated by the red emergency lights. Lily knelt in the doorway and it took everything she had to get to her feet. She looked around and saw the exit sign at the end of left side of the corridor. She moved as quickly and quietly as she could. The door opened to her touch and beyond that a stairwell. She went up until she saw natural lighting streaming from the window in a door above her.
Heart pounding Lily raced upwards heedless of danger and threw her weight against the outer door. It opened and she was outside! Adrenalin pumping she looked around and raced for the fence line. The sun was low on the horizon as she reached the chain link fence. There was a large rusted sign barely hanging there, three of the four clips that held it had broken. She lifted one corner of the sign up and pulled it towards her, the last clip snapped and she caught the sign. Lily turned it over and read it, Ft. Wood Military Base. Another explosion caused her to turn and see that two buildings were fully engulfed and others were slowly being consumed. It was getting dark and it was bitter cold out. The fire would draw attention and she would be rescued. She just needed to hide until the police or fire fighters arrived.
“I will survive damn it,” she snarled and headed for the flames.
The heat would keep her from freezing and it would be the first place rescuers would flock to. A few minutes later she was close enough to feel the heat of the major fire and her limbs began to thaw and her body quick shaking. She stayed in the shadows and kept her eyes and ears open. A van pulled up and she almost ran up to it but her gut instinct told her to wait and see. This could be her kidnapper returning to finish the job. She crept a little closer as the three men got out. The driver was tall and built like a football linebacker. He had short cropped blonde hair, was good looking and had an aluminum baseball bat in his right hand. The guy that had been in the passenger seat was average height but easily as heavily muscled as the driver and had a long knife strapped to his leg. He looked to be American Indian with an anxious expression on his face. The last guy to step out of the back was by far the most frightening. He was close to six feet with wide shoulders, long dark hair and eyes like a shark, cold and dead. He was the only one carrying a gun. It looked like a 9mm but she wasn’t sure she didn’t know much about guns.
“We need to find her,” the driver said. “Kill her on sight… we can’t let her expose our operation.”
“I am not going back to jail,” the passenger cursed. “Let’s kill this bitch and toss her in the flames.”
“You do what you want. But I am going to throw her in the flames and then kill her.” The man with the dead eyes purred.
“Let’s split up and remember we have maybe a half hour before the fire department gets here.” The driver told them as they began searching.
Lily sat there squatting in the shadows with both hands clamped over her mouth. She didn’t dare make a sound or move until the trio were out of sight. She took deep measured breaths to calm her nerves.
‘Think, I need to think this through,’ Lily thought to herself. ‘If I panic I will either be killed or freeze to death. I need to find a weapon and find a place to hide. It is only thirty minutes. This place is huge and time is on my side. They don’t look that smart except maybe the guy with the gun. The other two were just thugs but he was scary. The fires were still spreading and she had to take that into account. Good, that is good thinking keeps you from screaming. I need to move. They will be searching and I need to keep an eye on them. I need higher ground. I need to find someplace warm and high up.’
Fighting panic Lily moved towards a building near her current position that was mostly intact. It was three stories tall and looked out over the surrounding area. She moved buca escort bayan from hiding spot to hiding spot. She kept low and did her best to keep her shadow from being cast by the fire light. The darkness and cold enveloped her as she entered what was once been an engineering building. Lily kept to the walls and headed for the stair well. If she could reach the third floor she could look down on her pursuers. She tried to avoid the broken glass as she slunk forward. It was so damn hard to hear, he heart was thundering in her chest and it seemed to drown out everything.
She found the door to the stairwell propped open. Had someone been here before her or had it been this way for years? There was no real way of telling. She peered in and up and saw no one and no movement, so far so good. Lily was keeping an eye out for anything that she could use as a weapon but so far nothing. She reached the second floor and again the door was propped open. Ignoring it she went towards her goal and hopefully safety. The stairs were littered with debris of all kinds and she cursed when nothing that she could use as a weapon appeared. The door to the third floor was closed. She pressed her ear to the door and listened. The only sound was the ever present pounding of her heart.
Lily opened the door as slowly as she could. The view was one of utter devastation. Debris had been hurled from the building next door had struck the wall facing the burning ruins. The windows had been blown inward and shards of glass glimmered in the pale fire light. She looked around for movement and seeing none crept towards the bank of windows to look out over the rest of the base. The van was still parked but there was no sign of life or rescue yet. Lily squatted down and took in her surroundings now. One door was labeled Lab and that gave her hope of finding some sort of make shift weapon. Her muscles ached as she continued low to the ground towards the engineering lab.
The door to the lab was unlocked and she opened it slowly. She peeked in and it was empty. She slipped inside and closed the door behind her. She stood up and rubbed her legs as she examined her surroundings. Got to hand it to the military, when they abandoned a base they were thorough. There were a few lockers still bolted to the walls but their doors were open and empty. The teacher’s workspace was still intact and on top of that was three samples of concrete with a single piece of rebar lodged into it.
‘I bet it would hurt like a fucker to be hit in the knee or upside the head with that,’ she thought as she worked one of the rebar free of its concrete prison.
Footsteps outside alerted her that she wasn’t alone. She dropped down placing the workspace between her and the door. She looked around and saw something sticking out behind one of the lockers and the wall. Lily took a deep breath and reached out and snatched it from behind the locker. She returned to her hiding place and looked into her hands at the object, it was a sheathed knife. The leather sheath appeared to be either snake or alligator skin. She rubbed the dirt and dust from the knife. The handle appeared to be dark animal horn that had been lovingly crafted. Lily pulled the knife free and stared at the gorgeous patterned metal blade. The shape of the blade was unusual, instead of being flat on one side and round on the other it was all sharp angles.
She turned it over in her hand and it looked wicked sharp. As she returned it to its sheath something fell to the floor, it was a note. Lily picked up the note and opened it. Whoever had made it had written the note to his sister of all people.
‘Dear Sis, I have been studying hard to make you proud. I know you told me to be good and keep my head down but I had to make this for you. I have been reading everything I could on metallurgy especially how the Japanese forge their swords. Did you know they use two types of steel? One steel is really hard and the other much softer. It is this ingenious combination that makes their blades for strong yet flexible. If you are reading this you are holding a ‘Tanto’ in your hands. I made this after hours in the metallurgy lab. It took days to make and I hope you like it. I had to hide it in a place no one would ever look to keep it safe. I am shipping out soon and when I get back I will give it to you. This will keep you safe when I can’t. Your Loving Brother, Thomas.’
Lily blinked away the tears and wiped her eyes. She tucked the knife into the small of her back and promised she would find who this Thomas had been and return the knife to his sister. I am going to survive and I will kill anyone that gets in my way. The fear fell away in a wave of rage that broke the chains her captor had placed on her. Her thoughts were cut short as the door opened and Lily listened as his footsteps crunched on the debris. She shifted as he moved into the room. She kept the workspace between her and her pursuer.
“I am going to kill you little rabbit,” the man said. escort buca “I know you are here somewhere I tracked you.”
It was the American Indian and he was following her footprints in the dirt. Lily drew the knife out and clenched it tight in her left fist. There was a metallic tapping on the surface of the workspace now. He had taken out his own knife and was trying to rattle her. It was working. She had never hurt anyone in her entire life. The man dashed to one corner outmaneuvering her. He glared down and licked his lips.
“You can make this easy and I can kill you quick. Maybe you want it drawn out and painful… how do you want to die?”
“Fuck you,” Lily spat her knife hidden behind her back.
“Slow and painful it is,” he said closing the distance. “I was hoping you’d put up a fight.”
She waited until he was in range. His knife flashed down quicker than she expected and drew a livid line down her leg. The pain was intense but bearable for now. She watched as he licked her blood from his blade. He made the mistake of looking down at his knife and that’s when she struck. The thrust was powered by her fear and rage, it hit its mark. The Tanto cleaved his heart piercing flesh and bone easily. The man fell dead almost yanking the knife from her grasp. She wiped her blade clean using the corpse’s shirt. Wincing in pain she examined her own wound. The cut was precise and shallow. He had meant what he said about making her death slow and painful. The second rush of emotion crashed into her and she wept about what she had been forced to do. She was a killer. No, she was a survivor!
‘Stop it! There are still two more of them and still no sound of sirens approaching. It is time to channel your internal Sigourney Weaver, it is time to unleash the Bitch!’ Lily thought as she hardened her heart to her situation.
She carefully sheathed her weapon and crept to the open door. She looked around and something reached the low end of the range of her hearing. Lily headed in that direction and by the time she reached the bank of windows again, the sound had become quite loud. What had begun as a metallic creaking was now a shriek of straining metal.
“What the hell is that,” she said as she looked down into the blazing inferno. “OH FUCK!”
Lily raced away from the wall as the gas main, which had endured an explosion and furnace-like heat for so long, surrendered and erupted. Lily’s world went white as the gas explosion rocked the entire area. She was hurled by the concussive wave that preceded the tower of flame. She was prone and her ears were ringing as she opened her eyes and looked around. In front of her the walls, ceiling and floor were cracked. Behind her that side of the floor was broken, burning and open to the sky. The lab she had been in was gone. The gas explosion had obliterated it along with much of the structural support for that side of the building. The roar of the fire was mingling with a deep guttural groan coming from all around her.
Lily moved her jaw and rubbed her ears to try to get rid of the constant ringing. She shook her head as she got to her feet. She checked to make sure the knife was still there. Comforted by the weapon she made her way to the other side of the floor. The creaking and groaning grew worse as she looked for the other stairwell. She reached the stairs and sat down as a new sound filled the air, sirens. That didn’t mean she wasn’t in danger it just meant they would be more intent on finding her. She got up and fought the dizzy spell. Lily reached up and came away with blood from her ear. She snapped her fingers on both sides and was satisfied she could still hear.
“Time to get the fuck out of Dodge,” she moaned as she made her way down the stairs.
She heard both police and fire truck sirens. Hope welled up in her as she reached the second floor. She was rounding the corner to the lobby when she saw two silhouettes. Lily drew her knife and held it out in front of her.
“Stay the fuck away from me,” she screamed.
“Hey, it’s okay we are police,” the figure on the left said.
“Put down the goddamn knife,” the figure on the right ordered.
“Pinkerton, stand down this is the girl that has been missing,” the officer on the left cried out.
“It’s you,” Lily said recognizing the officer on the right. “You were in the van with the others! You’re a fucking cop?”
“I told you bitch, put down the knife,” the other cop repeated as he cocked his weapon.
“Pinkerton, lower your fucking gun,” the first cop said drawing on his partner.
Lily let the knife fall from her fingers and the motion was the first domino to fall. The cop on the right fired, his bullet striking her in the chest. The second cop squeezed the trigger killing his partner instantly. The officer called out for paramedics and announced an officer down. The cop moved over to Lily and looked at her wound. He told her over and over again, it is going to be okay. We got you… hold buca escort on… but the darkness of pain and blood loss won out. Lily lost consciousness.
The Other Side:
There were flashes of consciousness but they made little sense. There were lights and voices and then darkness again. Lily’s eyes fluttered open and flinched as she sat up and cried out. She was in the hospital. There were IV’s and monitors and a lot of annoying beeping sounds.
“It is okay,” Louis said as his hand gripped hers.
“How long,” she asked.
“Don’t worry, you are safe, they got them. They are all dead.”
“I got one,” Lily said her emotions rising to the surface.
“Good for you,” he said. “Mom and dad are outside. You are still in the ICU. But the bullet missed a lot of vital stuff. A collapsed lung and a little hearing loss from the explosion but we are all behind you.”
“Oh, is that all,” Lily said smiling. “Ow… it hurts to smile.”
“Get some rest and we can talk later,” Louis said as he got up to leave.
“NO… stay with me, talk to me at least until I fall asleep.” She said her fingers clinging to his hand.
“Sure,” he said. “So where did you get the knife?”
“I found it,” Lily said and told him all about hiding, spotting the knife behind the locker and the letter. “I want to find her. I want to give it to her.”
“If you need any help,” Louis offered and she smiled.
They talked until she drifted back to sleep and he watched her for a few minutes before leaving her room. Friends and family were gathered in the waiting room. His expression was grim and Gabrielle hugged him and promised him the full might of the Ordo Hereticus. Louis nodded and told everyone gathered that she needed rest right now. Louis and Gabrielle sat off by themselves and had a council of war. He watched his parents head over to Lily’s room. Her mother was walking by her husband’s side as he directed the wheel chair forward.
“Have you read her statement,” Louis asked.
“That one word disturbs me, organization,” Gabrielle said. “The one that shot her was a fifteen year veteran of the police force. That is very unsettling.”
“Have they identified the body in the lower level?”
“Damien Vitale, age 37 and a career over the road trucker,” she said frowning. “We are cross referencing his routes with murders. I believe we will find some connections.”
“How did he die,” Louis asked.
“Cyanide, self-induced in a gelatin capsule,” she said. “He had time to make his way to an incinerator located near his body. It appears he miscalculated how long it would take for the capsule to dissolve. I am assuming he was going to burn his body beyond recognition to conceal his identity.”
“Why would he do that? If he was hell bent on suicide why not kill Lily and then set off the explosives. If he was at ground zero we never would have found the body. Something is not right here.”
“His family claimed the body last night. Ironically they are going to have him cremated.”
“Family, after all he’s done his family came for him? You just never know.”
“What is really bothering you,” she said taking his hand.
“I feel, I feel like the other shoe hasn’t dropped yet. This group isn’t done yet.”
“We will be there waiting for them Louis. You and I will be there.”
They returned to the main group and sat and talked. The feeling of impending doom never left him. What was the watcher doing while this thing blew up in its face? Was it done? No, it would still seek out retribution for the death of the First. Had they been lovers or were they simply family? There was no telling and it hurt his head to think about it. The others were discussing food while Louis’ thoughts wandered down dark avenues and morbid contemplations. Iyaden appeared, flanked by two Inquisitors and motioned for him. It was time to go. It was time to train. The next time the Watcher appeared he was likely to perish, but damn it he would put up one hell of a fight!
The four of them went to another part of the hospital. They had made an agreement with Louis’ physician in regards to his unorthodox training. He would be monitored while he trained. The sensors were quickly in place and he lay down. Iyaden would be seated next to him for the thirty minutes while the doctor monitored his vitals which included brain activity and heart rate. Louis and Iyaden closed their eyes and it began.
He was standing outside the concrete bunker. The solid steel door opened automatically and he entered. The interior was bleak barren walls with electric lights spaced evenly. The training room was stockpiled with a variety of melee weapons as well as firearms. He began with a breathing exercise to oxygenate his blood and get his heart pumping. He took out the Bo Staff and warmed up with that. Iyaden watched from a corner of the chamber. She was sitting cross legged observing his speed, accuracy and technique. If he performed well she would remain motionless. However, if his form proved sloppy or inadequate she would ‘intervene’. The first few sessions had been brutal and that inspired the observation of a physician. Even though the training and this entire environment was virtual via his neural implant the impact it had on his body was quite real.
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