Wednesday, December 18, 2013

It wasn't fucking Cypher

It was that dick of a "Dad" of his. "Samael". The "Attendent". Bunch of glorified universe glitches claiming to be goddamn angels doesn't give them the damn right to fuck up my skull. To put me back into that goddamn PLACE. I was CALM GODDAMMIT until he decided to turn everything upside down and inside out and sideways... not that that is hard to DO when you turn the world into one of those fucking padded rooms - THEY ALL LOOK THE DAMN SAME.

Sensory deprivation, in part, really.

Makes the patients more keen on being friendly with their bitch nurses and the piss-shit doctors.

Least I always kinda figured that was the idea. Make the crazies want you to be around them cause at least that fills the Nothing with SOMETHING, right? even if it happens to be some braindead nurse who smiles at you as if you're fucking FIVE YEARS OLD. The entire place... is maddening. If you're sane going in, you'll be questionable by the time they let you out...


goddammit i did not need this shit

i didn't NEED to be reminded of all the garbage. All the pointless tests and fake - disturbed? - smiles glued in place under lying - sickening yellow - eyes. Samael... just turned it. Just that little bit more. Stayin g in a place like that is disturbing and nerve-wrecking as is but he just... he revved it. and it got under my skin as cleanly as a hot knife through butter. The nurses, the Doctors, the other patients that peeked in through that tiny small ass window... they were people from back then. People from that place. And a mix of new faces from now. But no matter how I screamed at them that the joke was over...

I was crazy.

That was the rational.

No matter what I said or screamed or fought against... it was all because I was crazy.

Can you even... imagine what that's like?

It's like you're bleeding to death. The blood is EVERYWHERE.

But the more you try to get them to SEE that you are dying, the more they just smile those smile that just SCREAM what level of NUTS they think you are. And do. Abso-fucking-lutely NOTHING.

But I... may... have been able to pull through that decently enough. Might have been able to just... brush it off. Brush off all those grinning yellow eyes... even the ones that stared back at me in my refection... but what I couldn't...

what I...

"...Now, now, Alex, we've been over this before. Your mind is sick, remember?"

...Sam came to see me.

"It conjures things for you. Dark... twisted things. Painted in blood and doused in screams
until your very own screams echo up and down the corridors~
Just like all the other Crazies in here.
Locked up tight and the keys thrown well away~
Isn't it better this way, Alex?
My Dearest Alex...

A tiny cage such as this... is so very suiting of a rabid mutt like you.

You're dangerous, you know that, don't you?
You're your daddy's ankle biter, after all.
No argument there, hm?
You certainly inherited his Deadly Shot.
Not to mention that rather wicked temper of his~

He used to take some good swings at your dear ol' Ma, didn't he?
Shouldn't have been as surprised as I was...

when you took a swing at me." 

...It had been the last time we ever spoke. Just before the that damn accident that threw Sam onto one Path... and me onto another. I was scared. And angry. And frustrated. And I just... I needed someone to lash out at. To blame. To spit poison and utter things that, to this day - to this fucking MINUTE - I wish I could take back. Sam just... stood there, mostly. Looking miserable. Hurt. Taking it. Taking everything... until it tried to touch me. Tried to COMFORT ME...

and I took my hand... and stung it across Sam's face.

I can still... FEEL it. To this day, I can still FEEL Sam's PAIN on my own hand and I... I hate myself for it. I HATE MYSELF FOR IT. I hated myself for it THEN but I was too fucking proud - too fucking ASHAMED - to even say it. To even address it. Then there was no time, because He was there... and we all piled in and sped off in that car...

right into the path of that tractor trailer

i never got the chance... to tell Sam how sorry i am.

i never... wanted my last words to it to be... blame.

I'd give anything to change that moment

To say "I love you"

to HOLD Sam instead of screaming at it.

I knew Sam was just as scared as I was. I knew.

I just didn't care.

I'm a selfish piece of shit for that. And I'll never DO enough to crawl out of that hole.

Sam deserved better than me.

I told it that right from the start...

"Can you feel it chipping away inside your skull? Gnawing away? Bit by bit?
Peeling away all of what you are, or, rather, who you think you are.
You've always been good at Playing Dress Up, haven't you?
Wanting to play the part of the Hero~
But, at the end of the day...
who do you fool, Alex?

You were born into Blood, weren't you?
The badge, the costume... you know it was never you.
Not the real you. You were just playing along for the fun of it.
Smiling for the Cameras~"

...I don't really want to talk about it.

I don't think... there's anything to talk about.

I got a taste of what... "Nightscream's" specialty was.

for most of you, that's all I should have to say

Cypher said that, once he realized what was going on, it took him an hour or two to break through the loop to get me out. Feels... like an eternity more...

he's left me alone. they all have.

guess that's something to be thankful for

"Won't you Smile for me now, Alex~?"

Friday, December 13, 2013


i told you. i TOLD you no white no lock no not goddamn ANYTHING like it and THIS is what you do?!! am I fuckinG AMUSING YOU NOW!?! IS THAT IT?? ALL FOR A GIGGLE?! FINE! FUCKING FINE haha what a laugh i don't CARE just open the goddamn door

just open the door


you cant do this you... it isn't a joke. it isn't FUNNY i'm not crazy i'm NOT FUCKIING CRAZY i'm CALM i swear i am i won't leave just... just get me out of here. i can't.... I can't BE in these walls again. not this. not this i'm not crazy i'm not im not IM NOT i thought it was a goddamn NIGHTMARE at first but i can't... i can't wake up. what have you done...? I TRUSTED YOU, YOU FUCK AND THIS IS WHAT YOU SHOVE DOWN MY THROAT??! this is your choice of punishment or some shit for me for being weak or some fuck!? you made your goddamn POINT just open... open the damn door. i spent threeyears h ere i can't... i...

you made your point just...


no no no no n o no NO NOTT HE FCKING WHITE COAT FUCKS!!!!!



Thursday, December 12, 2013

I'm surrounded by assholes

But they're right.

I tried to leave like a fucking idiot. Obviously, I wasn't thinking straight. But I just got... sucker punched, to put it lightly. Had a little bit of a "moment" or ten. I figured throwing myself at Redlight, even if I knew deep down it wasn't going to stop anything, was better than just sitting around. Cause at least then I'd be DOING something...

but doing something does imply accomplishing something.

And I certainly wasn't going to be doing that by just... throwing in the towel.

Everyone kept telling me that, but I didn't want to listen. Cause that would imply I really COULDN'T do anything but wait it out... and I was... and am... very VERY sick of waiting. Especially since the blood is just... rising higher and higher. Can almost FEEL it sloshing around my waist. The blood I spilled by deciding to get involved in this mess. The others keep telling me its not on me. That none of it is ON me... but that's something I can't believe. Death caused from inaction is just as heinous as taking that life yourself. I used to see it time and time again on the job. Situations where... if someone had just done something - done ANYTHING - it probably would have saved lives... but no. Too worried about their own skin to do that, aren't they? Would rather video it and post it on youtube for the hits than actually stand up and DO something... stand against someone...

Anyway. Cypher stopped me from actually leaving.

He gave me a choice, actually. The gentleman's asshole that he is.

One, I be a good little Nobody and stay on Lockdown in my room until I let "sense back into that thick head of [mine]".

Two, I continue to try to leave, so I'd remain on Lockdown. In a Loop. Of my room.

Opening a door only to find yourself reentering the room you're leaving gets old FAST.

Cypher's not going to let me out of here anytime soon. He has enough to worry about without adding me as a flight risk, and I don't blame him for it. I'm supposed to be here to help the issue, not split his attention another way... which is probably ANOTHER reason why Redlight was doing all this shit. I know I've been... quiet... since my last outburst. But I didn't.... I wasn't in the right mind to talk to all of you. Wasn't in the right mind LAST time. I shouldn't have written that. I shouldn't have. But I did. And now Redlight KNOWS just how much he's getting under my skin. Oh, he assumed before, I'm sure. But now he knows.

I've had two more videos hit my email account since then.

One was a video... of the house Sam and I bought together. The house that we... were supposed to raise our family in. The house that we abandoned along with the rest of our lives when... when He came. When every second was haunted by the thought of seeing that... "face" again. That sightless gaze. everything elongated. Stretched. He... He owned that house, by the end. It wasn't ours. It was all His. Every corner. Every dark spot. Every time we turned around... we were haunted by that feeling. that CRAWLING. that clawing in our guts... at just the thought of seeing Him again...

Seeing those rooms again.... they almost seemed normal. All decorated... with someone elses things. Someone else's life. The camera rolling over pictures on the wall. A little girl posing in a ballerina outfit. Cute girl. Wide, green eyes. Probably twelve. Thirteen. Somewhere in there. Then the camera went to a picture of her twin brothers in matching soccer outfits. Gaps in wide grins. Red hair. Just like the hair on the bride in a wedding shot. Nice looking couple, though he was obviously a lot more laid back than her. Next shot told me why. She was a lawyer. He was a stay at home dad. Bit of a... chef extraordinaire, I guess.

The camera took my over school photos. Vacation pictures. Small trinkets, no doubt souvenirs from this place and that...

Then the microphone began picking up... noises. crying. strained breathing. Before the view turned... and spanned across the couple. Bound to chairs and gagged. Terrified. Confused. Already bruised. Already bleeding. And their kids... nowhere in sight. Morgan's voice starting off screen. Telling me... how I was either one of two things. Either I was a coward - whimpering and hiding away while letting others take my place. Or I was sitting back and watching... because I was enjoying it. Because I was... just like him. Going on about the feeling he got... from dominating another human. Like a High of some sort. Telling me that I had to know the feeling. That they knew where I'd come from. How I'd grown up. How my old man had trained me. How I already had blood on my hands before I'd even got out of Detroit... and now that blood was just... soaking me. From head to toe.

When Morgan stepped out... he had the kids with him. The twins were knocked down to the floor in front of their parents. Tied together.

The girl... stood beside Morgan. Emerald eyes staring straight ahead.

And a red ribbon in her hair.

Morgan handed her a jerry can without another word. And she took it as if on autopilot. Stepping up... and turning it over on her brothers. They squirmed in their bonds as it soaked through but got nowhere. And once the can was empty... Morgan handed her another. Which she splashed over her parents. I could practically smell that stench as I watched them all twist and wriggle.and thrash. Knowing what was coming next... and being completely powerless to do anything about it. Least until the can was empty... and the next thing the girl did was take off all the gags. One by one by one by one. The pleads and demands were instantanious... but it all fell on deaf ears as Morgan grabbed the girl and pulled her back over to him. Out of harms way, I guess, before handing her a set of matches.

Once sparked, she tossed the small flame onto her own brothers.

The fire burst out. And so did the screaming.

The parents screaming in anguish and horror as their boys screamed and cried in agony.

Until the flames crossed over to where the parents were tied up. Then it was nothing but agony.

Morgan left with the girl, and all the rest in Red. The house burning behind them. He took the camera personally as he walked. Staring into it as he told me if I ever really stopped... to compare Dr. Marsh - Proxy Bob - to Sam. Going on about how my choice in allies really were no different from my choice in enemy. But that.... since I seem so hypocritical with it, then I wouldn't mind them playing the same trick on Alicia.


Her only damn crime... is that her family bought our old house.

And now she... they.... they sent me another video. I don't really want to get into it but... Alicia was their new tool. They put her into a white dress. Barefoot. Still with that red bow in her hair...

Morgan still did his.... own routine. That sword. The rape. Always the same. The same pleads. Screams. Cries.

then there was her

and afterward... i was sent a small clip of her... released from the Red. when she got back control. knowing what she'd done. knowing everything... just like Sam did... just like... Dr March does...

her screaming... just keeps echoing in here.

just keeps... echoing....

odd, really. I don't remember the walls being white in here.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

sam wassn't a monster.

i am

i am... for doing NOTHING. for just SITTING HERE and LETTING him... butcher them like this. i didn't want this. this wasn't the deal. this wasn't how it was supposed to GO GODDAMMITT!! WHY DO PEOPLE DIE FOR ME??! WHY?? Why when it's ME that you want, you STUPID RED FUCK!??!! JUST COME AND GET ME!! TORTURRE ME!! no tthem.

WHy them...?

the first video... was on the 13th. a school. AN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL YOU SICK FUCKSS! They were KIDS! Class after class of KIDS just .. butchered. slaves in Red kept anyone from leaving as that BITCH Morgan... worked his way through the schooll, one by one. ssome of them... were cut clean in half. guts everywhere on the floor. others were... beheaded. others had that... blade driven straight through them. others... mostly the ones that tried to run... had all their limbs cut off. Just left them. left them to bleed out while they... cried... and screamed for their moms and dads and I just... some of them... i,... i swore i saw Leo among them but i know... i know that's just,... that's not possible. but i heard his screams just as clear in my head as every single kid. teacher. the secretaries and principle... even the janitors... were all focused on. one by one by one by one...

there was... one woman. a teacher. during a pause amongst the blood and crying and screaming... using her own body as a barrier in a doorway. her students obviously on the other side by the sounds of crying. she begged Morgan... for mercy for the children. not herself. just the children. Sam would have done that, Sam....

for the love of God, they were just babies...

I watched... for what felt like my lifetime. somehow i wound up sitting, though i don't remember that. i couldn't... think... or say... anything. it was like watching a bad horror movie, and you're just... waiting for the heroes to show up. to stop it. to just make it fucking STOP... and once it... clicks... that that was real. That that... really happened....

i threw up

and then i ran

Cypher... followed me to my room. Telling me how I should have expected it. should have beenn.... prepared for it. But how do you prepare for that?? HOW? it wasn;t supposed to  be this way. I swore to PROTECT the people, not be the REASON they get... cut apart...

He... told me not to talk about it. That it would just... prove to Red-Fuck that he was hitting the right buttons.

so i kept my mouth shut.

i didn't say ONE FUCKING THING.

but it didn't stop

another video on the 17th. this one was... at a church during Sunday Mass. packed full of believers. the choir was singing... right up until Morgan booted his way in. and beheaded the first person he saw. A man. mid-fifties. He dropped like a sack of potatos... and his head was kicked down the center alley like a soccer ball. Splattering its way down and eventually rolling to a stop at the steps up front. Everything... came to a deathly silence. Shock. Disbelief. Then... raw panic and screaming. a rush for exits that were already blocked... and, above it, Morgan yelled for the choir to sing. He... told them... that if they SANG they would LIVE. And... they did. they lot of them... started singing... even as Morgan's blade reaped death after death. same as the school. One by one. Making sure the camera caught each one. For me. each death... that was on my hands. they wanted me to see it. watch it. feel it. and i... did. i couldn't not watch as every member of the church was cut down, save the choir and the padre... and then he started cutting down the choir. their songs turning to screams and pleads that... he keep his word.... again and again, "you said" "you said"...

just like i swore to Serve and Protect, ain't it?

He slaughtered them like he'd done the rest, just.... blood on white gowns... blood on stained glass... on wooden floors and carvings of angels... all just... painted red until the last scream stopped and the camera turned focused in on the padre. the last one alive. Lying on the floor. cut up and bleeding out, but not dead. not dead yet, though he probably wished he was when Morgan started... ripping his robes off...

the next one... was at an orphanage.

The one after that... was a community center. they were having a charity event...

after that... was a hospital.

and every place... every person... who asked why. who... begged for mercy... every child and doctor and wife and husband and teacher and INNOCENT...

Morgan told them who's fault it was.


"How about you beg for ALEX to save you?"

i can't.... i can't get their voices out of my head.

i can't make it STOP. It has to fucking STOP it's ENOUGh it's...

today... an hour ago... they sent a new one.

they tracked down every member... of my old team.

i started screaming when i recognized the first house. Annie's house. Cypher grabbed me from behind.  fought to keep hold on me and slammed me back againsst a wall. trying to make... me focus. to snap me back. but i just... it was on the screen. SHE and HER FAMILY were on the FUCKING SCREEN and she... 

they tortured her.

told her the same things until she... screamed for me to help her just like they all had.

Until her family... was screaming too. He tortured... Annie... until she was near the point of no return. Near it, but still aware. And that's when Morgan... turned his attention to her family. Her husband and three boys. Andrew, 17. Sean, 15. And Chris, 12. Morgan... castrated the two youngest... and then he raped Andrew. The eldest. And then raped the father. Each tortured during and after... until the last one alive was Annie. Spitting blood and cursing Morgan...

and cursing me.

before she received the same treatment.

only... her final death came when he... he took her skull and smashed it into the floor until it... broke open. Until I... i could see her... brains through the mush of blood and bone. Digging his... fingers in and... cracking it open all the way. he just... didn't stop. Death wasn't even ENOUGH he just... started mutilating every part of her and... and then stringing her up. Stringing them ALL up like turning the entire famliy into some... ddemented art display...

showing me the finished product of my own... my own actions. my oown... inactions...

it was Annie.

it was ANNIE!! how could i...? how could i have... left her to that...?  to suffer through that...?! to MORGAN!?! HOW?!!

how could i have... left them all... to thatt...?

the next house i saw on the screen.... was Cho's. his... heavily-pregnant wife. And his mother-in-law and father-in-law. 

then Patrick's place. he was... woken from bed with his fiance.

then Madeleine... she'd... just come home from a date, it looked like...

They left Jacob for last.

My partner.

A widower. Only had his teenage daughter left.

Morgan... took his daughter away first. made him listen to her screaming from her bedroom... until the screams and cries got weaker and weaker. Jacob was crying. Cursing and crying. Begging for his daughter. And when they took him in to see her, they took the camera too... and i... 

i had never seen so much blood from one person.

covering everything. splattered everywhere. dripping down. Grace was lying on the bed. naked. obviously raped. body torn open. dead eyes staring up at the ceiling... where my own name had been smeared in her blood...

Jacob started sscreaming. collapsing to the floor.

then it was his turn

and i just... i...

it's my fault

i've watched... every single face. heard every word. watched every death.

too much death


i'm not worth this

i'm not


i can't do this anymore

i can't WATCH this anymore

i can't.

i can't...

Friday, November 29, 2013

Right. So. We lied.

Guess I should have updated this sooner than just now cause I was SUPPOSED to tell you about Banks, but... well. Shit happens. Especially in this line of work. Especially when you could start a traveling sideshow with the kind of company you keep. But anyway. I shouldn't bitch. They're good people. Just fucked up, and really, aren't we all more than a bit fucked up? These people just let it overflow to the outside instead of letting it bubble up inside...

But right. David Banks then...

I knew he'd be one of the more... difficult obstacles in my way. Cypher and the others knew it just as much. After all, with how much, CYPHER hated the Dress-Up Plan, we could assume that Banks would be just as livid at someone else impersonating Nightscream. For a bit, I think I NEARLY convinced him... then I successfully ruined that during ONE BAD NIGHT after I had encountered that stupid NEST thing... crazy fuck still gives me nightmares...

Cypher was trying his best to stay involved and "between" any association and chats between Banks and I. Trying his best to work with whatever material I managed to give him. I won't lie and say I was GOOD at being Nightscream. In fact, I'd say I was damn horrible at it. Sure, I got the hang of the speech after a while and I'm learning how to type forever-posts... but it still wasn't right. Wasn't GOOD ENOUGH. And, eventually, Banks got sick of my attempts and tracked me down. I was stupid enough to be out for a WALK of all things (I like walks. Sue me.), but even with Tiger as my protection, I still got snatched. I really don't remember much about that. Just the taser hitting me. The current. And then I kinda drifted in and out. I remember being tied up at one point. Memory is a damn crap shoot, but I THINK I was in the trunk of a car.

When I finally DID come to, I wasn't tied anymore. And I wasn't in anything that was moving. I was just... left lying sprawled out on a floor. A cold, concrete, basement floor. Made my joints feel like CEMENT when I first tried to move. Pushing myself partly up as all my muscles complained at being forced back to their jobs again. Back cracking. Knees. Made me feel old as shit.


I jerked up. A mistake that I instantly regretted as all that ache in my muscles just burned more. Still, I didn't let myself be distracted. Trying to blink my vision into adjusting behind the mask I still wore, I eventually managed to locate my only company: A shadow sitting in the dark at the other side of the room. Even though the voice had sounded calm, there was still an edge to it. A warning of a very present danger. A cliff's edge.

I was 99% sure I knew who it belonged to.

And if I was right... there was going to be WAR.

Of course, my first demand was to know where the HELL I was. Which only spurred Banks to invite me to guess. Saying how he'd be interested to hear if I could. Of course, I would have rathered be DEAD than play his game, so I just swapped my demand. Asking where Tiger was. What he'd DONE with him. After all, I did like the Samurai. He had honor, if nothing else. And he was one of the few that I was around all the time. Him and Mumbles. Like the mime and me, Tiger and I tended to talk a lot.... though Tiger was always more stand-off-ish. In any case, if BANKS had done something to Tiger, that just gave me another reason to put a hole into his head. As if I didn't have enough reasons already.

"Tiger's fine. You might not be up on everything, 
but I'm cutting down on my unneeded murder count."

"Yet another box checked under the title of Thankless Saint, Banks
How charitable of you. 
Taking your jacket right off your back to give to a homeless man
 and nursing broken birds back to health too, I expect?"

"...How did you... oh. Sarcasm."

"You know what, FUCK YOU!"

I'd crossed half the distance of the dark room before I even realized it. I could HEAR my blood pumping in my ears and I could FEEL my fists shaking at my sides. Yelling at him, in probably what wasn't my smartest moment. Telling him how I knew what he was. What he did. And that he wasn't fooling ANYONE with that goddamn ACT of his. The whole "I've changed and I want to be better" routine. That I sure as hell didn't believe it for one FUCKING SECOND so he could shove it all up his ass and tuck it around the corner.

That shadow of a man stood. Movements slow and controlled, but wound tight like a spring as he came closer. Nearly circling.

"I could say the same for you."

And, in one fluid motion he ripped off my hood and mask. I tried ducking low and sweeping to the side, but it came off all the same. Sam and I may have similar builds, but other than that, our hair and eyes... even the shape of our faces were different. Sam having auburn hair and silver eyes. Me with blonde and blue. As if he even HAD to rip the mask off though. I guess he'd just been making a point. Sick of staring at a bad joke of someone he once knew...

I just snarled at him.

 "You're not ruining this, do you HEAR ME? 
I will not LET you RUIN this! 
It's the one thing I CAN do; since you let Sam DIE, it's the ONLY thing I can do!"

He finally stopped. Looking a bit more puzzled, but held tight behind a determined eye.

"...I should know you, shouldn't I? 
This isn't an act of opportunity.  Sam meant something to you.

 Suppose I won't need the nipple clamps then."

All I could feel... was the heat. The boil. The SCREAMING ANGER that I was barely keeping hold on.

"I don't give a FUCK if you know me or not!
None of this has ANYTHING to do with you anymore. 
You had your chance and you SCREWED IT UP... 
unless, of course, you were just clearing out one used up pet so you could get another. 
Then I guess the only screw up you did was showing your face to ME!"

And I let all that BOILING... out in one single, nasty hook to his jaw. Slicing across it with the blade I'd triggered above my knuckles. He hadn't bothered dodging it, which is why he had to sidestep to subtly catch his balance. I guess he hadn't thought I'd pack that much of a punch. But of course he retaliated. There was only a pause that the blood from the gash began running down his cheek and throat... and then he grew tired of being calm, I guess. Taking a swing at me. Fast and precise. My own anger had put me in FAR too close to him, but I still managed to mostly dodge the first punch. Barely getting clipped by it. The second, because of my messy retreat, dropped like a hammer. It would have sent me onto my back, if there hadn't been a shelving unit there. Digging into my back, catching me even as I cringed. Shaking my head clear.

There's a snarl in David's voice when I heard him next.

"Do I really need to mention that I'm being nice?
You know full well what I could do to you. 
What I want to do to you. 
But instead of being grateful for the fluke of events 
that's lead to me not leaving your body on the side of the road, 
you insult one of the few genuine things I have ever done. 
I don't care who you are, no one does that.

So shut up. Or I'll stop talking."

"You rape the love of my life and then watch it commit suicide...
and you want me to be GRA----TEFUL?!
And don't give me ANY fucking BULLSHIT about goddamn CONSENT. 
There WAS no FUCKING consent 
so you can just GO TO FUCKING HELL!!"

For a brief moment... he just stared at me. Wide eyed. Stunned.


Then there was a blink, and his entire demeanor changed. Shifted. Looking at me with fresh eyes. Nearly hesitant. Unsure. As if he'd crossed a line somewhere and hadn't even realized it. Then, slowly, he took out his switchblade... and placed it down on the floor.

"I didn't rape him. 
I barely touched him after that one time. 
Obviously he was in no state to give consent, but I never slept with him. Not once. 
You don't have to believe me. But I didn't. And I wouldn't. 
Even monsters have standards, though most see them as arbitrary. 
I imagine you know that. 

That was a hell of a punch. 
Law enforcement background? You have a stance like you do.
I don't know whether or not Sam mentioned that. 
I... I had trouble getting through some of his posts."

"Heh. Sam never mentioned... much... about me, did it?

Special Agent Alex Prescott, FBI, Banks. 
Least I was, back when SHIT made sense. 
Luckily though... some of that is still useful. 
Like profiling fuckers like you. 
Like knowing... KNOWING the kind that stop. 
And the kind that... don't. That never would. 
That NEVER DO unless someone STOPS them. 
Unless bullet or blade or CAGE stops them....

I knew about you LONG before Slender Man ever came around, Banks.
We had FILES on the bullshit - the slaughters and rapes - you left behind you.
I spent MANY years imagining what it would be like when we took you out.
What you'd really look like. Sound like.
Never figured I'd wind up just another play thing for you.
Another file to add to the stack.

That was why you brought me down here, right?
To torture me? SKIN me? Rape me?
You're a SICK FUCK, Banks.
And it churns my stomach to think of you even laying
You had no right.
Sam was BETTER than you.
Better than MOST.
And you...

What did you tell Sam at the end?
When it was too broken to fight anymore and you took it in?
Did you... did you say it would FEEL BETTER from it?
Did you claim you were HELPING?
Whispering everything you FUCKERS do to make your victims
explain away all the pain and SICKNESS they feel inside?
How far did you push it, Banks?
How MUCH did you TAKE from MY SAM?!!

...I gotta admit, though...
You have good foresight, if nothing else. 
Taking my weapon. 
 My Glock.

You'd look good with a hole between your eyes. 

The only FIX for people like you."

Silence stretched for a very long minute as I watched the rage BOIL through David's system... and as he shifted, I straightened. Thinking that, if he wanted to level a punch or two further at me, then like HELL I was going to be knocked DOWN by them... but he pivoted instead. And cracked his fist against the wall. Then he punched it a second time, then a third. Then one more time after that. Until that boil came down to a simmer.

"I'll have to keep you a couple days. Figure out a way to keep you out of this."

 "Like HELL.
I told you this has NOTHING to do with you, Banks. 
You think just because you directed your punches at a damn wall instead of my jaw, 
that you've PROVEN something? That you have ANY kind of power over anything here? 
You don't get to CONTROL me like you controlled Sam. 
Even as we STAND HERE death-glaring each other, Cypher is tracking me down. 
And he's going to be even worse 'company' than ME when he gets here.
 So do yourself a favor... and get lost."

"Why is Cypher helping you?!
He of all people has to know how Sam would feel about this." 

Like a Hurricane meeting a Tornado. David was furious. I wasn't much better. It was taking everything IN ME not to turn the argument physical. My hands clenched so tight with the effort that I could FEEL them shaking.

"Of course he KNOWS!
 And so do /I/. 
But SAM isn't HERE anymore. 
Sam was BARELY here at all after that Red-FUCK got done with it.
 See. I may hate your guts, Banks. 
I may be standing here HOPING I get a chance one day
 to put you down like the rabid dog that you are. 
But that Red BITCH is worse. 
Ten million times WORSE. 
Sam was BEYOND obliterated and I will. Not. Walk. Away. From. THAT. 
Not all of us are willing to just sit on the sidelines and WATCH the world burn, BANKS. 
Not all of us can FORGIVE AND FORGET what that FUCKER did to Sam. 
And if I can use this little ACT 
to flush that bastard out so Cypher can have the chance he needs to END this... 
then I'm damn well going to DO IT.
 I'm the bait. 
Cypher's the trap. 
End of story."

"Then he's just going to find some different bait isn't he?"

"Oh yeah? WHO?"

"...I could do it. 
It's not quite as evocative as Sam, but it would do the trick."

  "HA! That's rich.
 All you've been doing for MONTHS is HIDE,
 and NOW you want to actually get off your ass and do something? Why?"

 "You wouldn't believe me if I told you."

I just crossed my arms. Flat-out telling him that he was deluding himself. That it would never work. Pointing out that even Sam had said that Red-Fuck was ruled by his own emotions, his own pride and RAGE. Explaining that THAT was what we were targeting with all this. THAT was the sweet spot - the one thing that could set off the asshole's fuse - and it was something that ONLY the image of 'Nightscream' would be able to get to this quickly. Ripping into that feeling of FAILURE and letting Red-Fuck work himself up into a frenzy. He had done EVERYTHING he could to destroy Sam in ways that I sure as Hell can't even begin to imagine...

and I intended to make him believe that HIS WORST just wasn't GOOD ENOUGH. That Sam CONQUERED it. Rose OVER it. And was coming back to KICK some arrogant ass. I intended to make him ENRAGED. To throw caution and reason away so that he could manifest... and it could all be over. Sam would have JUSTICE, which was a small token, really, at the end of so much suffering...

It's all I can do.

And I sure as HELL wasn't going to let BANKS get in my way. 

Pointing out that all Redlight ever did to HIM was to abandon his loyalty. Not exactly something he could fail at.

But Banks, the arrogant ass, wasn't having any of it.

"Then find someone else to be Nightscream. 
There are plenty of people with his build.
 And it's not like they could impersonate him any worse."

"That's not an option."

"You doing it isn't an option either.
You're throwing away ALL of his sacrifices."

"...So I should throw some OTHER poor idiot into the line of fire instead, right?
This was my idea. 
If shit goes wrong and Red-Fuck figures out he was coned 
before Cypher can do his thing... 
the BEST outcome is a quick death. 
Rips out my heart or something. 
But at worst...

...No. I'm not going to subject someone else to that. 
My plan. My pain, if it happens that way. 
Sam has already suffered WAY too much for my sake...
I'm not going to make someone else suffer for me too."

"...Sam will come back from the dead and kill me if I let you."

"...You're really just giving me more reasons to go through with this."

Surprisingly... he chuckled at that. Looking at me with an odd expression that I couldn't quite place before he looked down to his switchblade on the floor... and kicked it over to me with the toe of his boot. Posture nearly relaxed. Nearly. Carefully, I bent and picked it up. Never taking my eyes off of him. Expecting the trap. But I straightened with it, and he still hadn't moved. Just watching me.

"Not a glock, but it will do in a pinch. 
If I have to die... I'd rather it be with that. 
But you should know... that you're wrong about me.  At least, partially.
Because something did stop me."

"And what was THAT?"

Really was NOT in the mood for his games anymore.

  "Earlier, you said something around the lines of 'back when the world made sense'.
An understandable sentiment. 
Most people would assume it was because of the death 
and the otherworldly entities. 
But for reasons that are probably more me than you, I don't think so. 
Faceless men? Weird. Difficult. But you could deal with it. 
But with him gone... the world loses all meaning. 
Sometimes it feels like not even gravity works the same any more. 
Tell me Alex, of the people you've profiled, how many were married? 
Take that number and I imagine that you could find some good reasons why they did. 
Power, a good cover, money. 
Now tell me. 
Why did I marry Ronan?"


When a serial killer is as successful as you. As good as you. 
They tend to do one of three things. 
Start killing more often, and eventually trip up and get caught. 
Perform a finale.
 Something huge as, usually, a suicide mission. 
While leaving enough proof behind to prove he was responsible for everything. 
Or, in your case... pass down the baton. Make a chain. 
Create a Legacy. 
Hardest option to pull off. 
Gotta give you credit for that. 
Marriage is good for trust building. 

After that, it's only time."

He nearly lost his composure at that. Expression contorting in rage for a brief second before he latched the reins back on. Taking a breath. Calming down again.

"Ronan's an unconventional choice, don't you think? 
Hardly a serial killer type. Not saying he wasn't capable, because he was. 
But... well his work ethic was off. 
He'd hardly enjoy it, and to be perfectly honest 
I'd never been able to convince him of something he didn't already want.
 Plus, he was just as old as me. Weight's beginning to be an issue. 
He was attempting to become sober, 
but there were still nights where he couldn't see straight. 
I have a lot of young things I have a decent control over. 
Lots of potential. Lots of blank space. 
Why Ronan?"

"So what's the alternative then? 
You fell in love and saw the error in your ways, 
so you decided to become a shining, smiling prince? 
This isn't Beauty and the Fucking Beast.
Don't forget, Banks, I've seen your work up-close and personal.
I know your record like the back of my hand.
Least for the shit we managed to FIND OUT about.
People like you don't change. 
They don't. 
It's a snake pit. 
You fall in. You get bit.
 There's no climbing out..."

"You talk about me as if I'm not human. 
As if I am not full of flaws and inconsistencies. 
As if I am so wonderfully sure in my ways that I never have need of doubt. 
And even if that were true. 
Even if I was so unchangeable... I died with Ronan. 
She might as well have shot me in the head too, 
because the world was upended in that moment. 
Do you understand that? 
Because I think you're the only one who can."

I stared straight back at him. My glare feeling more like a frown as everything tossed and turned inside my head. My own logic wasn't adding up to a perfect picture in my head. Besides... I didn't really believe my own accusations. Oh, I wanted to. But I couldn't. Not deep down. Not without being the biggest hypocrite on the damn planet. I knew people changed. Most didn't WANT to... but they could. If they made the choice to. Sam, after all, changed from a Samaritan to being one of the most brutal, cruel, ruthless serial killers I'd ever known... going so far as to go one so poetically about the BEAUTY of killing... of murder...

And even me. I fought took and nail to get out of the Family Business back in Detroit. I actually had to take refuge with an uncle of mine out in New Jersey just to get AWAY from it. Which only brought Hell on his house, but my uncle was a honest to God GOOD MAN... and I was a kid. So he stood up for me. And was beaten to the last inches of his life. His eyes couldn't even OPEN anymore, they were so black and purple and swollen. They left him to die from internal bleeding - dragging me out the door by my hair. I can still kinda remembered what he sounded like...  when he was trying to say my name amongst a mouthful of blood and teeth.

That was when I chose... to go against everything I'd been raised in.

There's always a choice...

"...Tell me the truth, Banks. I deserve the truth.
 I loved Sam. And, despite everything it did... I still love it even now. 
The fact I was TOO DAMN SLOW getting out. That if I had just... gotten to it. 
Maybe things would have been...

I could HEAR Sam screaming with every word on that damn blog. 
Nothing it wrote after Red-Fuck was ever without agony. 
You had to have---
...I deserve to know what happened between you two. 
I NEED to know the truth. Whatever it is. 
If you..."

I clenched my jaw. Unwilling to say anymore.

"...You say you've seen my files."

David got... eerily calm at that point. Walking up to me before lifting a hand. Tilting my chin up. Voice barely a whisper. Almost sounding... sympathetic. 

"Then you would know that I'm not a liar.
A year ago, not only would I have done it,
I would have stood here in front of you and bragged about it.
I would tell you every single detail, knowing that while it tore you apart inside,
you wouldn't be able to stop listening. 
But that was a year ago.
Not even monsters can stay the same in the world, even if they try. 
Things push and pull until everything is unrecognizable. 
I did have thoughts. 
I'll admit that to you. 
Though they were far more based in sentimentality than you might expect.
 But I never touched him. Never. 
Sam's account was pretty accurate, minus some personal moments. 
But again, nothing happened. 
That's the truth."

I listened.

I listened until he was done... and, even as I swatted his hand away, I believed him. I didn't say it. I didn't apologize for accusing him. Or hitting him. I didn't WANT to believe him... but I did. My glare hitting the wall instead. The floor. The ceiling. Anywhere but at him. The minutes dragging out, but it wasn't really all that uncomfortable a silence. More as if... letting things settle.

Except... there was one other thing that I needed to know... even though it tore my heart apart to say it.

"...How did Sam do it?"

  "...Slit his wrists in the bathtub. 
Quick, painless, and thorough...
He made absolute certain he'd be dead before I could get there.
I burned the body."

I felt that BOIL begin around. That ITCH that gets going under my skin... so I started pacing. It was the only thing I could do to try to get rid of the tension - the desire to HIT something... only it didn't work this time. Though I settled for the wall as a target. Damn near shattered my knuckles, but I barely felt it. Already on a rant. Half yelling. Half grieving. I went on about how it was an oxy-damn-moron. Sam committing suicide. People like SAM don't commit suicide - they're the ones that go on rants for HOURS about how there's ALWAYS a rope if you're willing to grab it. That there's ALWAYS a light at the end of the tunnel. That things get BETTER if you give them the chance to. Sam used to act as a part-time guidance councilor at its school because the kids preferred talking to IT rather than someone who barely gave a damn behind a desk. I can't count the number of times it came home all worked up because this kid was cutting or that kid was withdrawing from everything...

Sam cared. Sam thought life was WORTH sticking through, through good and bad. Used to call it a roller coaster. Throwing the coaster off the track wasn't an option. You rode it out. Sometimes it was fun. Sometimes it was scary. But you're strapped in for the ride, so you might as well throw your arms into the air.

"...Sam wasn't that type. It never gave up. 
Not with anything. Or on anybody... 
That Red-Fuck needs to suffer. And Die. 
No one does this to my family. 

"Well we're agreed on one thing.
If I let you out, if I help you on this, you better make him suffer. 
For all of us."

"...If you help me sell this, I will.
Help me sell this, Banks. 
And we'll take that son of a bitch DOWN."

"Then I suppose I was surprised to find Sam underneath that hood."

"...Yeah. I guess you were."

We talked for a while after that. Turned out he had me down in a basement in the middle of nowhere in Ohio. The very same building that Banks himself was taken to as a kid and held captive there for eight years. The very same building that the local authorities found the skinned remains of one "Mr. Dubois". It was abandoned and well off the beaten trail... but I knew Cypher would find it soon enough. Even if he had to call in to his 'Dad' for the info. And, once that maniac burst through the front door.... I knew he'd be more likely to eat Banks' kidneys than stop and listen for a moment. So I told Banks it would probably be better for him to leave completely and come back around later, least until Cypher found me in one piece. He's nearly creepily possessive, but that has to do with Sam, not me. I guess he figures I'm his responsibility or some bullshit like that. In any case, he would be more willing to listen first and shoot later if Banks himself wasn't in the line of sight, so that's what we did.

Banks left. And I waited.

And, of course, just like I figured... when the entire team burst through the front door AND windows AND walls... they were looking to shoot to kill. Half expected them to accidentally shoot ME, but we avoided that somehow. And, yeah, Cypher took a hell of a lot of convincing that nothing happened. And even more convincing to make him let Banks get involved with the whole scheme.

Cypher was DEFINITELY considering pulling back on the whole thing and just throwing me in a Labyrinth. I could see that little thought ricocheting around in his head. Made me want to pin something OFF of that skull of his to get him to focus. So I did. Probably the best use that mug had had in YEARS.

Eventually... we all got on the same page. First thing Banks did was help me write our "Fake Encounter".

And it all worked.

It goddamn WORKED...

It should be over by now. But it's not. So we just gotta keep moving forward. It's taken a while to get this shit up, but now you'd be pretty much caught up on how things really... came about, I guess. Things have been fucking NUTS here. Have a whole heap of... what would you call them? They're made of the same goop that Cypher is made from. We have a bunch here, all protecting Proxy Bob. Guess I'll let HIM explain that shit, cause I have no idea what the hell....

That's it for now.  I really hope I can get more than an hours sleep tonight...

been having some weird ass dreams.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Just Business

When I first met Cypher... I'd already been spending every waking minute I had digging into what is so cutely called the "Slenderverse" or "Fearverse" or whatever the hell term you want to use. I was never much of a reader, but this... new ambition of mine turned me into one. Every blog that I could get my cursor on. Every sighting or possible sighting or even just... strangeness. I knew all about strangeness. Hacked into much of the strangeness to see if I could see if the "Organization" or whatever was the rotten core. My hacking skills were more than a little rusty. Hadn't used them in years. And shit changes fast these days. Like the world is jacked up on speed. Everything warped and blurry... makes you wonder why we HAVE insane asylums, really. EVERYONE is goddamn nuts.

Anyway... guess I left something to find during one of my stays tapping away at the local library. The place was deserted, except for the librarian. I mean who even GOES to libraries anymore? I'll tell you. BROKE PEOPLE. Like I was. Hell, I was saving every cent my old friend had generously given me just so I could "eat" each day. And I use the term loosely. But there was one evening... where someone DID end up joining me. Walked right through the front doors like he'd been coming there all his life. He was dressed well. Was humming to himself as he strode over to where I was amongst my nest of papers and folders and notes. Came right on over and parked himself in front of a computer near me. Adjusting the screen a bit before looking back over his shoulder at me. Giving me this... really wide grin under that fedora hat. Blue eyes and a wild mess of blonde hair.

Everything about him was just... pale. Skin. Hair. Eyes.

I got a feeling about him... that I hadn't felt in a VERY long time.

One that kicked me right back to Detroit. My hometown. Oldest kid of the boss' best hitmen. Just a mafia war. One side of the city against the other. Fire and bullets and walking by a body sporting a good twenty bullet holes in him while his blood drained into the gutter... well, that was just a good time to be a pick-pocket. Might have been a drive-by, after all. Could still have some cash on him. Interesting way to grow up. My old man wanted to pass his gun down to me. Said I had a real killer shot.

Just wish it would help me to kill Red-Fuck. But whatever.

The guy sat down and grinned at me. I was trying my best to not look like I'd watched him come in.

 "Getting a bit late to be studying up in the library, isn't it friend? 
What is the matter? College Exams? Or something else?"

It took me a moment to remember that I should probably act friendly enough, despite the old itch burning down the back of my neck that this giddy little snowflake was about as pure intentioned as a goddamn Nazi.

 "Just getting ready for a career change. 
Gotta stay one step ahead in this day and age, right?"

He pulled up a window on the computer and I saw orange on his browser. Blogger, of all sites. A random blog about cooking.

  "Yeah, don't I know it... 
Must be hard though. Change. 
Most people have a hard time adapting to the reality of the world. You know?"

I didn't like it. I didn't like it ONE GODDAMN BIT. So I started to gather my things. 

 "...You learn.

 Anyway. Thanks for mentioning the time. 
Didn't notice it was that late. I should get going."

After all the shit I'd been through and all the shit I'd read, I knew I was probably paranoid to hell, but that didn't matter. My instinct was what kept me ALIVE in Detroit and it sure as hell kept me alive on the Force. I wasn't about to start ignoring it when it was WARNING me about this kid. And that's all he was really. A kid. Didn't look any older than eighteen. Twenty tops. But I wasn't about to underestimate anyone or anything. Not about to make THAT mistake when I had so much left to do.  I was trying to get OUT as soon as I could, packing away all my shit into my backpack... while still trying to not LOOK like I was rushing too much.

"Lost in your studies eh? I can respect that."

He clicked once, and opened a NEW blog up.

One I recognized immediately.
"Morning Hunter".

I felt like I'd taken a punch to the gut.

"....It's you. Isn't it?"

He scrolled to one post in particular. I caught the title, remembering it.

The post that bragged about Flaming Baby Baseball.  

"So let me ask you something, friend. 
This is a very nasty business we have going here. 
Why would you be so obsessed with sticking your nose where it does not belong?" 

I remember taking a slow step back, one of my hands subtly shifting around behind me. My Glock, of course. Safety was already off, which had been a good start. Even though, if any of the posts were to be believed, I knew it would do little to NOTHING to help me. We were the only ones in the entire library - even the damn librarian seemed to have buggered off somewhere - which was good. No crossfire victims. But also very bad.

I didn't really think that getting EATEN sounded like a good way to go, to be honest.

"...Personal business.

You've had your fair share of that. I'm sure you can relate."

 The screwed up fuck actually licked his lips. As if he KNEW what I was thinking.

"Ah, I see. You poor thing. 
Lose someone to the business? Someone close? Spouse? Child? Sibling?"

He was trying to find my buttons, I knew that. But I also know how to buy time.

Give them what they want.

Honestly, it's as simple as that. When you want to buy time: Cooperate. Talk. Tell them whatever you need to in order to give yourself a few more minutes - even a few more SECONDS - to figure out your plan of action.


One exit was too far away. The other... HE was closer to it. 

"...And both my kids. My son and... daughter."

My first stumble.

I'd read about what had happened to Laura, after all.

Sam picked a good name for her. Probably the only good thing that baby got in her short life. Being named after Sam's mother. Sweet woman. Sam probably thought the name might give some kind of comfort...

What a sick fucking JOKE that had been.

But that wasn't the time to dwell.

My eye caught the window. It was a possibility.

"Awww. Well I am so sorry to hear that friend. 
Now, I am usually something of a vicious bastard, but I am feeling... 
Hmmm... Generous today. 
Forget everything that happened, accept the loss of your loved ones and move on. 
Live the rest of your life in peace. 
Otherwise, we are going to have a problem.
 I hate problems, you understand."

If he ever got that speel to work on ANYONE... they're a damn IDIOT.

So I decided... to try something else.

After all, I had read about Morningstar. All of the blogs.

And his connection with Nightscream.

"...You're after him too, aren't you?"

 "... Him? Him Who?"

"...The Red-Fuck. You're after him too, right?"

"...You mean Redlight, yeah?"

"...Yes, that bastard.
 I've already twiddled my thumbs for three years, I can't walk away NOW.
The son of a bitch has shit to pay for."

 "...Right. So. Um... we noticed you poking your nose into things,
but we never actually found out your name.
Who are you again?"

 "Alex Prescott."

For a long moment... I just got a completely blank stare. Then he opened his mouth to speak, only to close it as his entire expression changed to bewilderment and utter confusion. Staring at me as if I'd just grown a second head. Thinking back, it was actually a pretty damn priceless expression. Especially since I know him better now.

"Heh. I was wondering if you'd recognize 'Prescott' or not. 
After all, you'd know Sam better by 'Freeman', right?
And it never even ONCE mentioned its real name in the blog, so...
I guess Sam must have told you personally. 
You were a friend of Sam's, weren't you? 'Shooter'?"

"You... Aren't you... You are supposed to... HOW ARE YOU ALIVE?"

"...In short? Stupidity."

I gave him a briefing of what had happened from the accident onward. Finishing only by mentioning the post... about Sam killing me. How it had to be the Red-Fuck's influence. That it made SENSE, after all. Just another way to wear Sam down. BREAK Sam down. What did it matter if it wasn't real? Sam would think it was. And it DID think it was. Just another Nightmare to haunt it. Another slab of guilt.

I told him how I hadn't seen Sam in over three years. And how that number was only going to grow at this point... cause, really, saying it like that. It really dawned on me for the first time that... I was never going to see Sam again. Never. It hit hard. To actually SAY it.

He took a while to process it... but the more it sunk in, the more it seemed to weigh him. His mood changing (or the mask lifting?) from sadistically chipper... to glum. Depressed. Almost pained. Slowly confirming for me that... Sam was really gone. Dead. And worse. Then he said something which surprised me... because it sounded like the first sincere thing I'd heard come out of his mouth. 

"...I am truly very sorry we had to meet like this. Really."

"...You understand then why I can't walk away."

"I can understand that. But what do you hope to accomplish?"

"I'm going to KILL the son of a bitch. Or die trying.
And yeah, you have permission to laugh. I really don't give a shit anymore."

And I still don't give a shit. You can laugh. Go right ahead, it is laughable right? But I don't care what I have to do. I don't care what it TAKES. I want... the last thing that bastard to see... is my face. I want him to REGRET it. I want... Justice. Capital Punishment, as the good old boys would say. Strap him to Sparky and flip the switch without using a sponge. COOK HIM. After all... it's too late for me to do anything for Sam. Maybe it was even too late three years ago. But I can figure out a way to FRY that supernatural bastard!!!

  "You can't. Especially so limited as you are. 
What do you intend to do... shoot him with that gun you're fingering?"

I wasn't surprised he'd noticed. It was his job to notice.

"It's my Service Weapon.
You don't even want to know what I had to go through to get it back after 
I'd convinced enough people I was sane.
Fair enough - it's useless against things like you and him.
But it reminds me of who I am.

I'll figure out something. I'll find a way to do it.
Sam... had a golden soul, do you know that?
One of them kindest, most caring, sensative people I'd ever met.
Sam was a good inflience on me.
Good influence on everyone.
Always helping. Volunteering. SMILING.

If SAM figured out how to become a monster...

Then I can sure as HELL figure out how to KILL ONE!"

He gave me a look. Annoyance.

"Becoming one and killing one are very different. 
One is possible, the other is not.
 This is not a fairy tale and you are not the Noble Knight slaying the evil dragon." 

And I glared right back.

"And what would you have me do? Run? Hide? 
Pretend the one person who never gave up on me 
- who sacrificed everything FOR me and is in eternal suffering for it - 
wasn't played with like a toy and broken apart, piece by piece?
The love of my life was OBLITERATED. 
Sam gave EVERYTH----"

"I can have you NOT sacrificing yourself for Sam. 
You think Sam would want that? 
You can stand aside, not get in the way, and let US kill Redlight. 

Do you know what he would do to you if he knew you were alive? 
Do you have any idea?" 

 "Then let me fucking HELP YOU!
I get that I'm over my head, okay? I'm still trying to sort through shit that happened YEARS ago.
But I'm going to keep SWIMMING UP until I figure this shit out.
I can help. I can. Give me a chance to prove it."

"Help? You can't help. You can get KILLED. 
But it would be a miracle if you ever even SAW Redlight 
without him butchering you. Don't be a moron. 
Besides, I have to wonder if my Organization will even let you live knowing who you are. 
That is going to be one of my more pressing concerns, thank you very much... 

Could have been avoided if you had kept your goddamn head down but NOOOO..."

"Why would they care? I'm a nobody. 
I don't even understand why YOU were sent. 
Kinda expected someone to be sent eventually, but not someone as seemingly preoccupied as you. 
You'd think there are newbies who'd need some field training, eh?
Almost like they already knew. Sending you."

"If they knew, they wouldn't have sent me... 
Then again. It might have been Dad. 
Situations like this always seem to amuse him... 
And I care ONLY because it would be a disrespect to Sam NOT to care."

 "I figured that. I'm not as stupid as I look, you know." 

"That remains to be seen." 

Cypher glanced around the library for a moment. Mulling everything over... before telling me that he "strongly, STRONGLY" suggested that I'd go with him. Of course, I was leery. I even followed his gaze subconsciously. Paranoia taking over. Expecting to find all of the others - His Team - lurking around the library. Surrounding it and me. But of course, there was no one else. I was a nobody, after all.

I just asked where we would go. If I went with him.

He only said somewhere safe. Then got up and made for the exit.

I made no move to follow him... at first.

Then I was shouldering my backpack and slipping my Glock back into its holster. Moving quickly to catch up even as I started questioning if maybe the nice men in the clean white coats at the Asylum had jumped the gun a bit when they called me sane. But it was my best shot... at getting what I wanted. I just took a chance that Nightscream and Morningstar were really that close of friends... that I'd be accepted, by extension. Though some things did make me... dig in my heels at first...

"Normally a Labyrinth is a big torture area. 
Ironic Hell type thing. 
I am going to set a fairly pleasant one up to keep you safe.
 Can't have you wandering around alone, and I can't drag you with me everywhere."

 "So... a fancy cage? 
A supernatural version of the same rubber room I BARELY managed to get out of?"

 "Much more comfortable than a Rubber Room, I promise. 
Think of it more as a Bunker."

And that's where I stayed. 

The plan to use me as bait for Red-Fuck... was actually mine. Sam had always said that TELLER was ruled by his emotions. That he had one hell of a temper, and he only proved it again and again every time he showed his face. I figured we could use that. That if we could just get his blood boiling... he would throw caution to the wind and just ACT. Then all we had to do was snap a trap closed around him.

At first I was thinking maybe Steele. Or maybe Writer. Someone from his history. I was flipping through all my papers, trying to come up with someone who might work. Cursing myself. Because Sam would have known who to use, wouldn't it? Sam would have known...

And that's when it hit me.

 "...What about Sam? 'Nightscream'?"

"...Might tick him off a bit. Might also make him laugh.
Also... Poor Taste."

"Not the real Sam, Cypher."

"...What. Are you saying... you?"

"Sam and I are... we're very similiar builds. 
Not far off in height. 
And the clothing 'Nightscream' used to wear left everything else to guess work. 
If we can... make Redlight think that he FAILED to destroy Sam..."

 "Redlight knows Sam's mind. 
It wouldn't take him long to notice the differences swimming around in there. 
Furthermore, just because you can look the part, doesn't mean you can act the part. 
Move like the part. Talk like the part."

"You know Nightscream better than anyone else alive, don't you?"

"...Not as much as Redlight. Not as intimately as Redlight."

"...What about Banks? He was... with Sam. At the end." 

"...I am NOT contacting DAVID FUCKING BANKS for help.
We'll sort it out without him."

But it wasn't good enough, was it? Not quite. I was getting the hang of it with each post, but I still wasn't... hitting all the right notes. Not enough to press the buttons I needed to.

Until Banks decided to involve himself.

Then things came together just that little bit more, didn't they?

But that's long enough for one update. I'm tired to staring at the screen and Mumbles wants to play cards.

Three guesses which I prefer.