Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Warped Retribution, Part 3

It was...interesting.

The way Mira and Noah seemed to speak about him, I expected all of the Eyes to be bowing at his presence or lining up and standing at full attention. It wasn't like that at all. They acknowledged his arrival in simple, respectful manners. "Hello Father"s, nods, smiles and The Grigori acknowledging each of them by name. It felt like they were an actual family. 

The only one who seemed out of place was the man next to The Grigori. He was a tall, Hispanic man who looked to be in his late forties. He had a very professional appearance to him. A close-cut shave, thin glasses and a suit, although the jacket was a little longer than what I've normally seen. His cold gaze and long cheek bone gave him a distinguished look to him. I know it seems like I am obsessing over him but there was something about him that just really stood out for me. 

The Hispanic man went off somewhere else as The Grigori went over to Noah, who was being load up onto a stretcher and moved to a van. "Hello Father. Sorry you had to see my like this." Noah chuckled. 

The Grigori laid a hand on Noah's shoulder. "I must be the one to apologize my boy. I had put you and Mira into a very difficult situation. I am relieved to see that the two of you are alive." he gave what I believed to be a rather sincere smile as he said "I could not be more proud of the two of you. Now, just rest and we'll get you back home to patch you up." 

Noah had a look on his face that I had not seen on him before. He looked like a child, beaming at the words of praise given to him by 'Father'. "Thank you Father." he said before the back of the van was closed. 

As it drove off, he came up to group of Eyes that were now near me. Warren donned a pair of sunglasses and grinned. "Mission accomplished Grigori." he said as he gave The Grigori a heavy pat on the shoulder. Grigori? Why was Warren not referring to him as Father like everyone else?  "And just as you said, the kid made out it. Not that I questioned your judgment or anything, I'm just surprised. The kid didn't look like much." Do I really not look like much of a fighter? 

"Mr. Schultz is a rather unique individual, Warren." Grigori said as he smiled at me. "I was curious to see how he would fare on the battlefield." 

My jaw dropped "So you dragged me into this because you wanted to do an little experiment?" 

"It was merely a test. I just wanted to confirm that you are still worth being a satisfying meal for my Boss." 

I highly doubt that that was his actual reason but before I could call him out on it, the Hispanic man returned. "I'm sorry to reported that he isn't among deceased." His voice was calm and collected. It had a professional tone with a slight hint of an accent.

The Grigori let out a sigh of disappointment "Well that is certainly a pity. I thought he would have been a far better leader than that."

"We do, however, have a survivor."

"Splendid Tobias. Bring him here. Oh, and Warren, please gather up everyone else and head back. I would like to handle this on my own."

As Warren gathered the Eyes and loaded up the vehicles, Mira gave a small wave goodbye as Catherine and her got into one of the vehicles that once belong to the militia. The Grigori's smile returned as he looked to me "Perhaps it is just me, but I feel that when a decisive battle is to take place, the general should be among his men on the battlefield. To be there in person to witness a victory that you put on everything on the line to obtain. To not do so is not only a display of cowardice, but a lack of faith in the troops that have fought and struggled beside. It is insulting to both sides of the fight. Wouldn't you agree?"

"Y-Yeah..." I have to admit, I could see where he was coming from. While I try to avoid conflict (which if you couldn't tell, is something that I am fantastic at doing), if it comes down to it, I'm a respectful fighter. I'm not the kind of guy who would take a cheap shot to the groin or throw glass in their eye.

Tobias returned with a bloodied, wounded man who he shoved to the ground. "This is Curtis Hoyt. He appears to be rather high in the ranks. Unfortunately he has been quiet ever since I found him."

The Grigori eased himself down to one knee and raised the man's head, observing him. "How interesting...we did not bring anybody who fights with their fists. Did you wind up doing this to yourself?"

Silence.

He continued to observe the rest of the man. "Your right ankle appears to be swollen. Very little movement from you in general. Nerve damage perhaps? If I did not know better, I'd say that you fell down something. Maybe a long flight of stairs."

Silence.

"But then that poses the question of how it happened. You appear to be well-trained. A fair amount of muscle..." he grasped Hoyts hand for a moment, "...your palms are rough, worn down. A sign of experience. I doubt that it was because you were clumsy."

Silence. At this point The Grigori was just playing with his prey. Given that I was still too drained to do much of anything, I couldn't help but imagine myself in that man's position.

The Grigori raised an eyebrow "Oh? What have we here?" He rolled Hoyt onto his back and tugged on his shirt to reveal a crudely bandaged wound. The Grigori gently removed the bandage to reveal a gunshot wound. "It makes sense now." he said as reached down and lightly rap on the wound with his index finger.

Silence.

The Grigori then took out a small Swiss Army Knife from his pocket, flipping out the blade. Without any sort of warning he slipped the blade into the hole, wriggling it around inside. Hoyt was biting down on his lip to the point that it bled, trying as hard as he could to stick to his vow of silence. It wasn't until The Grigori violently pried the bullet out of him that he let out a cry of pain followed by a seemingly endless string of curses. "Ah, that explains it." The Grigori said over the wounded man's screams. "You were on the edge of the top stair. The bullet hit you and it made you lose your balance. Am I correct?"

"FUCK YOU!!!"

"Oh my. You are quite the surly individual."

"What are you doing? That's going to make things worse!" I shouted, trying to see if there was some way to keep the man from suffering. "You want him to give you information don't you?"

The old man slowly stood up "I intend to make things worse, Mr. Schultz." he said as he tossed the bullet aside. "I've encountered people like him. They are too devoted to their cause. No matter what I do to him, he will never say anything that could betray his comrades. It's quite admirable." He took out a handkerchief to remove the blood from his hands.

"Then you can just leave him alone...have him serve as a message to the rest of them." I said. I knew it was a dilemma as to whether he was better off living or dead but the torture was entirely unnecessary.

The Grigori kept that smile he always seems have. "Oh, Mr. Schultz. That is something I am afraid I cannot do." He looked down at Hoyt, whose screams toned down into groans and quickened breathing,  "People like Mr. Hoyt and the members of the militia are of a different breed. They claim that they are purging the world of Proxies and Runners in order to protect everyone from the horrors of my Boss. In reality, they are only doing it as a way to exact their revenge for the loss of their loved ones while avoiding confronting something they are unable to wrap their heads around. Isn't that right Mr. Hoyt?" He then slammed his cane into the wound, giving it a good twist and stretching it out in the process. Hoyt howled in agony. "It's kind of funny. They've sort of become a far cry from what I believe Moriarty originally intended." He look down at Hoyt and sighed "And you have the gall to hide behind his name." He gave it another twist.

"F-f-fucker..." Hoyt choked out.

The Grigori leaned in "Oh? I'm sorry Mr. Hoyt, what was that? You are going to have to speak a little louder. I am getting up there in years, so I am awfully hard of hearing."

"You fucker...my children are dead because of you.."

The Grigori gave the cane one final twist before pulling it out. "Well, isn't that a coincidence. Some of my children are dead because of you." He suddenly slipped out an old-fashioned revolver and fired a shot into one of Hoyt's kneecaps.

Hoyt's tough man facade was practically gone now. He bit hard on his lip, trying to keep himself from screaming any further. "Why don't you just let your 'boss' get me?"

The Grigori let out a loud laugh. "Oh no no no, Mr. Hoyt. That just wouldn't do. You see, if I let the Boss kill you, your militia would view you as a martyr. 'Curtis Hoyt, the man who valiantly fell in combat against The Slenderman.' It's a little bit of a lengthy title but I am sure you understand my point. Besides..." he fired a shot into his other knee. For once, The Grigori's expression showed a subtle hint of spite, the smile was gone. "...I refuse to let anyone get away with killing my children."

I may as well have not existed at this point. The Grigori had all of his attention devoted to Hoyt.

"So...what are you going to do? Kill me yourself?"

The Grigori grinned "No. I will let you live Mr. Hoyt. I'm just going to put you somewhere where nobody will find you."

By Hoyt's side it looked like hole had opened up. I could see a forest in there, warped in design covered with black leaves that looked like they endlessly falling. I quickly realized what it was.

The Path.

Hoyt looked in horror and tried to drag his body with his one good limb. The Grigori put a quick end to his attempt when he shot a hole into his wrist. He walked up to Hoyt and  nudged his squirming body inch by inch into the hole. Hoyt looked ghastly white as he was pushed in there. I have no idea how long it took before Hoyt was completely in.

The Grigori smiled yet again "Oh, and if anything bad should happen, please don't hold it against me." The hole finally closed as Hoyt screamed out something that got cut off.

He turned to me as he put his revolver away and tipped his hat to me. "I apologize for you having to see me like that Mr. Schultz. I just get a little carried away from time to time."

I just stared at him. I wanted to say something but...

On one hand, I should have been disgusted at how he treated Hoyt. But, I just can't. Maybe it's a because they saved my ass (granted they got me into the situation in the first place). But, I think I can't condemn him for it because I think The Grigori was completely justified.

From what I've seen, he legitimately treats the Eyes as more than just tools. In some very warped way, they are his children.

Tobias took me home after that and was kind enough to have retrieve my crossbow. I had so many questions for him. Why he and Warren didn't refer to him as Father? Why was he allowed to see the Path? But I was just too dazed at the time to say anything.  I did manage to utter a "Thank you" when he dropped me off, he returned the thanks with a nod.

_________________________________________________________________________________

So that's it. That's why I have been gone. I had to compose all of this. And it's certainly not something I'm going to forget. 

1 comment:

  1. Stranded in the Path... not a good way to go.

    ReplyDelete