“My Name is Chaos 2” Prologue and Chapter One, Part One

I landed back in the world, sword in one hand and bad-assery in the other. Or so I thought. In reality I had every intention of teleporting/zapping myself back to Lucifer’s realm just to, you know, try and catch Bella or something.

Instead, I landed in the mortal/incarnate realm. Bam! I careened on my feet, Bella’s sword in hand and grogginess in the other. The lab veered around me and I felt myself keel over- then right myself suddenly thanks to a grip on my arm.

At my side, FoxFace peered at me. “You’re alone. What happened?”

I staggered as my wobbly legs found their footing (hah!). I held up a finger between us. “Just a min,” I mumbled as the room began slowing down its spinning.

FoxFace clapped me on both shoulders and looked me in the eyes. There were soldiers lining the walls of this lab and they were also glaring at me with all the strength in their eyeballs. But FoxFace shook me stiffly so I looked her in the eyes. “Where is Bella?” she asked crisply.

Alright, the room had slowed down. I shook my head. “I don’t know, I – chased her, and – she got away,” I rattled myself mentally. I felt sick. Oozy. Covered in slime. Was this the effect of the portal, or of going from the Pure Lands back into samsara? Because I felt dirty, and certainly less enlightened than I had been just moments ago. Now the decision to ‘heal’ Bella sounded silly. I wasn’t a Buddha! What could I do? And besides, I had another problem that was glaring me in the face right now.

“What happened?” she looked me over. “You don’t seem wounded.”

“I’m not,” I wrung myself free from her grasp. “I just -” and I didn’t know what to say.

FoxFace gave me a cold stare. Then, with every move speaking volumes of disdain, she turned and marched away.

Chapter One

The department I had been shunted into was the ‘paranormal control agency’. Led by FoxFace, it was largely composed of buffbuff men and women with buzzcuts and egos as big as their biceps. I was shunted to a barracks, given a uniform, and told ‘Welcome to the Squad’.

I had promptly dropped the uniform on the floor and snorted. “Yeah, right!” I’d said.

The officer gave me a nasty smirk. “Kid, we have full permission to make your life a living hell, and to ship you back into the lab if you throw a tantrum. So get your uniform on, or you’re going back into the lab to live the life of a petri dish!”

I wasn’t too sure that they actually had any petri dishes large enough to hold my ego but – I scowled and put the uniform on. Just because anything that kept me out of the lab was a good thing. I didn’t want any more needles, tests, or whathaveyou. And if EVER I saw Leo again, I was punching the man. Jerk.

The next few days were… particular. My hair was cut into a short something or other. I met the rest of the squad. They all looked the same, and were significantly taller than me. In the evening they played card games. The next morning I literally fell out of bed (the top bunk, in case you needed to know) when the morning whistle was blown. We all did a ridiculous amount of push-ups and situps for the sake of ‘warming up’.

Then, after a gross serving of food, I was sent to the office of a certain ‘Officer Standish’, who turned out to be FoxFace.

“Good morning,” she said with a sense of bitter humor. I glared at her. Somewhere out through her window, the sun was barely getting up. That meant that, in hell, Lucifer still probably hadn’t finished drinking yet. Literally, no one in hell got up this early.

FoxFace rested her wrists on the edge of her desk. “You look so much more presentable. How are you feeling?”

I scowled and fiddled with my bracelets, which I had been allowed to keep. FoxFace smiled like it was a job well done. “I am glad you’re doing so well. I’ve heard you’re integrating well too, so far at least.”

“Did you hear about the breakfast cereal too?” I sneered. “It was awful.”

“Military food is awful,” FoxFace said, amused. “And I get complaints about it all the time.”

I paused, not sure how to answer to that. FoxFace just looked- so pleased with herself.

After a moment of her silent gloating, I slumped. “What do you want? Why don’t you just let me go?”

“Can’t, and don’t want to. You are part of our new program. Congratulations, you’re our first non-human military personnel. We’re investigating if you will be a valuable asset to the team’s efforts, if you are able to integrate, or if you should be in a team with other ‘paranormal entitites’. So no, I’m not done with you yet. Far from it.”

I gaped. “But-” I wasn’t sure how human military worked, but one thing for sure was – “I never signed anything! You can’t do this! I’m not part of the military!”

“No, you aren’t. You’re just an experiment. So you have no rights and, if I get sick of you, I’ll just kill you and be done with it.” She spread her hands. “But I have your blood, so if ever the need for you arises again, I’ll just call you back. You’re like a recyclable soldier. Prefect, really. Even if the mission goes foul, I can reuse you.”

I felt a wave of nausea. I’d died from Lucifer’s poison. If I died again… Where was I going?

“What? You look upset. You’re immortal, what do you have to worry about?”

I snarled. “I’m not going to be your slave for the rest of my life!”

“Oh don’t worry. When I retire, I’ll pass you on to the next commanding officer. So until the branch gets shut down, which can be quite some time, you’re going to be a ‘slave’ for whoever’s in office,” and she grinned wickedly.

I wanted to punch something. So bad. But I couldn’t just lunge across the desk and kill her. That’d probably turn my soul demonic or something.

Just about ready to see red and purple and all the colors of the rainbow, I rose and stomped from the room.

“Get back here,” FoxFace said coolly. “And sit down.”

I slammed the door behind me and whirled to face her. “What?” I yelled.

FoxFace gave me an obnoxiously patient look. “Sit down, kid.”

I stomped back to the chair and thumped down into it. Crossed my arms and legs and broke just about a thousand military rules with my expression. I wished she would just flip over and die.

“You do not leave unless I tell you so. You do not move, sleep, or breathe unless it’s an order from one of your superiors. Is that clear?”

I glared at her, digging my nails into my arms. I just wanted to hit her so bad. Finally, just because I wanted this to be over with, I nodded.

“Good. Now I wanted you to know that you have one week, today included, to get ready for your first mission. Get to know your team, rest up, and be ready in a week.”

“What’s the mission?” I grumbled, tightening my arms across my chest.

“Take a wild guess,” she said. Then, as if I might be too stupid to make a proper guess, she said “You’re going to catch Bella. Third time’s the charm, you know.”

I rolled my eyes. “You don’t want Bella caught. You don’t want her anywhere near these brain-washable idiots. Trust me. She’s going to take over this place, right out from under you!”

FoxFace remained neutral. “Oh?”

“She-” I caught myself. How much should I tell her about Bella? How much did she already know? But I wouldn’t give away Bella’s secrets. “You’re fucked.”

“Well, if you feel you have any information I should know, feel free to tell me all about it. But if you’e not going to tell me anything useful,” and FoxFace leaned across the desk. I recoiled slightly, and she smirked nastily. “You can leave,” she whispered.

I marched out and slammed the door behind me as hard as I could.

“My Name is Chaos”; Chapter Nineteen, Part Two

Wherein things get explained and Chaos is shocked.

////

“Chaos,” Bella was standing before me, leash in hand. “Where are you?”

“Bella!” I cried out. I wanted to reach her, but couldn’t move. I was stuck!

“Chaos?” Bella was looking left and right, irritation clear in her voice. “Come, here.” It was an order. And every cell in my body was trying to answer. I felt myself spasm, felt my skin nearly tearing off my bones so much I was trying to reach her.

But something inside was holding me back, hiding me. I screamed furiously, trying to claw my way to her.

“Chaos!” Bella called out angrily. There was going to be repercussions to this, I knew it. But I was trying, Bella, I was trying!

Bella began to speak, I saw her mouth moving, and felt the abhorrent result. She was punishing me already. “Come home when you’re ready,” I heard her say as an evil darkness opened up within me.

It felt like a pit of snakes being opened up within me. Wordless pain seeped through me, clawing at me from the inside out.

I screamed, clawing at myself. It felt like my blood was on fire. A painful jolt zapped through me, and for a breath I felt disconnected from the pain. In a rush it returned – then another zap brought slight relief. A third- andI was awake in the lab.

My body was gasping, and there was a whole team of lab coats around me now.

“We’ve got heart beat,” one voice was saying.

“Still not stable,” and I recognized Leo’s voice.

My vision swam, but somehow I fixated on FoxFace, frowning at the foot of my bed with her arms crossed. Quite suddenly, I realized I was going to die if I wasn’t sent back. Bella had just that much control over me. I was going to die, my soul being bound to her now. This pain was just too much-

“Put him out,” FoxFace ordered. “It’s obviously not working.”

Thank you, I thought. Just kill me and send me back to my master. Send me back…

a mask was placed over me. I gulped at the air, hoping it was a painless poison.

Actually, it was anesthetic. I passed out cold.

I had no dreams, no visions, nothing. When I woke I felt fresh, clear, awake as if I had been asleep for ages.

I sat up, blinking blearily as I looked around. I was wearing a hospital gown and cuffed to the bed on both sides, and there was a hospital blanket and sheets over me. Oh yes, and FoxFace sitting in the chair beside my bed.

“Good,” she said. “You’re awake.”

Uh, I looked around what looked like a hopsital room. It was just us, but something felt missing. I tried to feel my chest, but couldn’t lift my arm that far.

“Feel better?” FoxFAce was at the side of the bed now. She leaned against the railings, seeming pleased with herself.

“Fuck off,” I muttered, still wondering what was missing. Everything felt so – quiet. Empty. Like I was missing a part of myself. Again, I tried to lift my arm.

“You’re welcome,” said FoxFace grimly. “I’m the one who got you to stop seizing, by the way.”

“Wouldn’t be seizing if I wasn’t here,” I bit back savagely. Again, I tried to lift my arm – then saw a small pile of things in a bag beside the chair where FoxFace had been sitting. My sweater was poking out the top.

I looked down at my bare wrists. Bare arms. Then, it clicked in my head.

“Fuck!” I exclaimed, trying again to reach, but this time with a goal. Where was my collar? Where was it? I twisted my head, and felt nothing around my neck. They had taken Bella’s collar off. And with it, it seemed, they had somehow broken the bond with Bella.

“Where’s my collar?” I demanded, eyeballing FoxFace.

She smirked, obviously knowing something. “Oh, don’t worry. It’s not lost.”

A wave of anger rose in me. That was my collar, my special bond with Bella! Mine! “You had no right!” I yelled. What was Bella going to think? Was she going to think that I had wanted this? No, please, no!

FoxFace’s smirk turned grim. “Are you going to panic again? Do I have to call in the squad to get your levels back under control? Or are we going to talk like adults?”

I gritted my jaw. I wanted to punch her so bad. I twisted my wrist against the cuffs. “Take these off, then we can talk.”

“No. You calm down and talk, now.”

I scowled. She glared coolly back. “Ready?” she asked.

I rolled my eyes up to stare at the ceiling. Anywhere but at her. I was so, so, mad at her. “You have no idea what you’ve done.” I hissed.

There was a laugh. FoxFace pointed a finger at me. “You, have no idea what I’ve done.”

I glared at her. “Fine,” I snapped. “Then care to explain yourself?”

FoxFace gestured at me. “Are you going to be reasonable?”

I sneered. “No.”

“Okay then,” and she just turned around and walked out of the room.

“Hey!” I shouted after her. “Get back here!”

Her head poked back into the room. “Changed your mind that fast?”

The cuffs jangled as I tried to strangle her, but obviously didn’t get very far. “Get back here and explain yourself!” I barked. “Give me back my stuff!”

FoxFace rested an elbow on the doorframe, watching me with obvious glee. “Does this mean you’re going to be reasonable? We could strike a deal, you know.”

I rattled the cuffs again, trying to twist my way out of them. It was getting me nowhere. “Fine! Just-”

FoxFace stepped back in and shut the door behind herself. Smug, she drew the chair over and sat directly beside my bed. “So,” she said.

I almost hissed, I was so mad at her. Instead I pressed my lips together to try and not say something insulting.

FoxFace gestured. “Aren’t you curious at all as to ‘how’ you got here? No?”

I tried to cross my arms and yanked on my wrists without thinking. Ugh. “Oh, I was awake for part of it,” I sneered. “I got shot in the neck!”

“M-hmm,” said FoxFace, nodding like I was a cute specimen in a tube. “And then?”

I scowled. “You obviously kidnapped me. Again, might I add. Why do you keep doing this?”

FoxFace grinned nastily. “Because we didn’t. I-,” she reached into her coat pocket and drew out a vial of blood. She waved it between us and I sensed bottled up magic. “I summoned you.”

I blanched. “Su-mmoned?”

She pocketed the vial. “M-hmm. It pays to be a witch in the army these days.”

I blanched even blanch-ier. Oh no. “You’re a -” Oh, shit.

“A witch? Oh yes, and dare I say, you’re the most powerful specimen we’ve had access to so far. Which is why we’re taking our tests out on you.” she crossed two fingers between us. “We’re beginning to merge the worlds, Chaos. Thanks to the unique constitution of your blood, we’re gaining access to things for the first time in history.”

My throat felt dry.

“Of course,” she continued. “We started by sending you away – why else do you think we just shipped you away? And now we’re practicing getting you back. Took us a few days, but we managed. Now we know how to do it. Next is, well, control and usage.” She gave me a deadpan look, no mirth. “We’re going to put you to work now.”

I half laughed, half just didn’t know what to think. “You can’t hold me,” was all that came to me, out of sheer incredulousness.

“Oh?” she asked.

“You can’t,” of course not. “I’ve escaped before, and I can do it again.”

FoxFace ducked her head, smirking. “Oh, poor kid. We let you go, you know?” She looked back up and she genuinely seemed to pity me. “We let you go. Leo, escaping, we wanted to observe you ‘in the wild’ so to speak. Of course, once Leo’s life was endangered we aborted the mission so hey – but he’d already gotten enough of your statistics to allow us to do this.”

My jaw fell. “Leo-?”

“Was studying you,” she said flatly. “We staged your escape, Chaos.”

“My Name is Chaos”; Chapter Sixteen Part One

I half-invented some more. “The bone is for burial. To summon her. You know.”

FoxFace peered closer at me. “Really?”

I nodded. “Oh yeah.”

She did not look convinced. “And why should we give it to you?”

I tried to shrug. Nonchalance, nonchalance. “Because,” I said slowly, hoping something smart would just fall out of my mouth. No such thing did. I just waited on myself, and nothing came. Foxface raised her eyebrows.

“Because?” She looked like she was trying not to laugh at me.

I sighed. “Look, do you want Bella lurking around or do you want to give her to me? Consider your choices.” I thought it was maybe a good deal. Foxface obviously did not.

She laughed, peals of laughter just coming out of her. Even Leo looked amused.

“What?” I snarked, but I had the nasty feeling that yeah, I looked dumb. That was humiliating. That didn’t sit well with me – but it wasn’t sitting well with Bella either.

I felt it like a hard coil within me that was expanding, rage taking more and more space. Then, like a cold voice within, complete with a memory of Bella’s angry smile, I heard her voice.

“Free yourself, and wreck this place. Teach them a lesson.”

The order was like a cool salve. I felt awake, but subdued. Alert, but calm. Her grip over me was palpable, but it was comforting.

“What?” asked Foxface.

“Nothing,” I lied.

“You look different,” she said, drawing out a tool that looked like card reader. She handed it to Leo who pointed it at me. There was a loud beeping sound and their eyebrows rose. “Fluctuating levels,” Leo mumbled.

“Do it.” Bella ordered within me. “Now. Free yourself.”

Abruptly I realized that my failure was a humiliation to her. I must succeed, for her.

I had no weapons on me, no more necklaces. I was dressed, but my jacket was piled on a nearby chair. Closing my eyes, I felt my power. I felt Bella. And through her, the power she had granted me.

I felt myself speaking, but the words were silent. I felt myself slipping into that strange state that only Bella brought on. The ecstacy was near, like I was skating on the edge of a cliff.

There was a shout. Still reciting, I opened my eyes. I could hardly see through the haze of my mind, through the drifting closer to the unviersal truths, but there was Leo, clutching his head. There was a dazed and shocked look about him. FoxFace was gripping his shoulders and shakign him. Then, she whirled to snatch up a needle.

Why wasn’t she affected?, flicked through my mind before I realized what she was going to do. Subdue me. Another needle was in her hand.

Free me! I ordered Leo, channeling the words with will at him.

In a lurch Leo did. He flung himself between FoxFace and I, smashing down a button. All bonds jumped free. I scrambled up in a smooth glide, feeling like I was Bella’s puppet just as much as Leo was mine and we were all connected htrough a string that tied back to Bella. It was oddly satisfying, feeling Bella’s grip over me. I felt so much more powerful.

But there wasn’t time to dwell on it. I darted around the table, retreiving my swords and necklaces. FoxFace was gawking, stepping back with a gun in hand. My weapons slashed out. The closest machine exploded in a shower of sparks. Leo hung limply on the place, awaiting my next orders as I rounded on them.

“Now trash this place,” Bella’s will forged through me, demanding results.

And trash that place I did. FoxFace had pressed an emergency button but I was on fire. My power was rippling out through me. I moved like water over oil, letting out a wave of magic that exploded, burning and destroying as it went. Leo alone I spared, willing him to survive it.

As smoke filled the room a door hissed open and soldiers rushed in. Feathered needles flew towards me. I dodged, and cut the soldiers down one by one. Mercilessly I hacked my way forward, my vision a red blurr as I moved on and on.

I didn’t know where I was going, but I knew where I was when I found it. Bella’s body was there, in pieces, about this room. In a haze, I knew what to do. Collect the pieces. Injest them.

I smashed the jars down, kicked open drawers, and laid it all in a mess on the floor. Soldiers would be coming soon, I felt them streaming down the hallway, but this was primordial. This was it.

Within moments the room was a mangled mess, bloody bits strewn here and there, and I was drenched in a haze of magic, drunk on it. I didn’t know what I was doing or I would have been repulsed by the room and this gory mess.

Instead I felt Bella through me, in me, unifying through me. Her voice through mine, her heart beating in time with me. Power drove through me in near orgasmic waves. I couldn’t think, was only a puppet that was repeating, doing.

Then, abruptly, I collapsed into darkness. I found myself on all fours in smears of blood and shards of glass, mind reeling from the absence of magic, the void of Bella within me.

I did see the gun hovering before my face though. Beyond, I saw FoxFace, furious.

Then the world turned black.

“My Name is Chaos”; Chapter Fifteen, Part Two

Bella continued her grip over me until we had transported to the mortal plane. There, I finally was in control of my body. It didn’t come with a warning, or a gentle ‘here you go’. No, one moment Bella was striding forward, then the next I was crumbling down, waving my arms and flailing my legs to try and catch myself. Needless to say, I landed face-first in a snowdrift, gracelessly.

Pfah! I spat snow and scrubbed the freezing stuff off my face, propping up on one hand and scrambling up to my knees.

Inside, I felt Bella laughing at me. Thanks, but no thanks, I thought bitterly. “You can’t just do that!” I muttered viciously, just to be sure she heard that thought.

She must have heard me, but there was no answer. Perhaps she was tired from the stint of taking control over me? Now on my feet, I began trudging forward.

The portal had transported us into a scenery that looked dangerously familiar. There was quaint farmhouses. Lots of snow. Fields and valleys. And there, on the horizon? Pine trees of doom. Ugh.

I trudged and trudged and trudged. My feet were freezing and I was muttering angrily under my breath, wondering why the hell Bella hadn’t transported me closer to civilization. Why? And why did I have to do all the legwork, literally? Huh? She could walk and feel the freezy bits too!

No sooner had I thought that than I heard the sound of skidoos on the horizon. Great! I looked left, right, and saw them approaching from both directions. What luck!

It took me all of two seconds to realize that this was no luck. The humans must have sensed the portal somehow (what? Since when did they have that technology/spider senses?) and those skidoos were aiming straight for me.

So I stood still and let them come to me. Nope, I was not spending one iota more energy than I had to. No A+ for effort. I just stood, feet freezing, hands stuffed into my pockets for warmth, my breath freezing into misty clouds before me.

Finally, the skidoos (there was more than two, in fact they had been two flocks of five) drew up. Their riders fanned out, drawing guns that I recognized.

“Freeze!” one of them barked.

I laughed, hands still in my pockets. The irony was not lost on me. Freeze? Did it look like I was doing anything else in this stupid weather?

Laughter done and over with, I drew my hands slowly from my pockets and held them up at my sides. “Look, all I want is to talk,” I said flatly.

There was a beep. “Target recognized! Set to stun!” one of them barked.

“Hey wait-”

Thud thud thud, I was stabbed by about a dozen feathered needles ramming into my chest. “Fuck,” I groaned, hoping it wasn’t possible to overdose on this junk.

Then, the world swam and toppled over.

I woke up in a situation that was an echo. I was strapped down, and Leo was at my side in a lab coat. FoxFace was beside him, grinning wildly.

“What an excellent situation!” she was saying as I blinked awake.

“Oh,” Leo pointed at me. “Awake.” And he waved his fingers over my face. “Hey there!”

My first reaction was to snatch at those dumb fingers. What did he think I was? A baby? But I was strapped down, right? I just snapped against the straps, painfully.

“Good, awake,” said Leo, scribbling on an electronic pad.

“Hi there kiddo,” said FoxFace, leaning over me with a wicked grin.

I scowled and twisted my head away from her. Ugh. “What the hell?” I demanded. “Untie me!”

“Oh no,” she said, obviously enjoying herself. “We’re going to do this right here, like this. What brings you here?”

I glared at her, then skipped my eyes over to Leo. “What are you doing here?” Poor guy, he’d tried so hard to escape. But then again… my pity evaporated at the sight of his huge grin.

“Safely back at work, thank you very much,” he said pleasantly. Too pleasantly. Wasn’t he supposed to be miserable? What, had they tortured him into happiness? I frowned, puzzled.

FoxFace chuckled, patting Leo on the shoulder. “Our Sergeant here is perfectly well, don’t you worry. But you-” she pried at me with an eyebrow. “Tell us more.”

I snarled silently, lip curling in distaste. But what could I say? “I would like to talk to Leo alone.”

“Not happening!” said Foxface cheerfully. She snapped up a syringe from a table and waved it around like a drag queen would a shoe, a very dangerous shoe. “I believe you’ve been introduced to the dangers of needles, right kid?”

My scowl stayed firmly in place.

She grinned like this was one of those moments in life that she lived for. “Air in needles?All bad news for you, so,” she stretched out the syringe so that it was absolutely full of air. “Want to talk? Or am I sending you on a hot trip home?”

Cursing silently, I looked around. Nope, no rescue team coming in to help me. I hadn’t told anyone I was leaving, and so really, no backup.

“Okay, look!” I barked at her. “I just want to see her body! That’s it.”

Foxface made an unimpressed face. “Which part?” she asked, nonplussed. Then, setting the needle down she added “And what for?”

I pressed my lips together. Think, think, think. The best lie is one that contains the truth so → “Her soul is missing,” I blurted. “We think it might be lingering around her body.”

“Really?” asked Foxface. Turning to Leo she asked “Any electromagnetic activity recorded around the body?”

“None whatsoever,” said Leo happily as he checked something off his tablet. My, he looked so happy.

“Lookit,” I blurted. “Just a bone. Give me a bone.”

“A bone?” Foxface’s eyes lit up. “Whatever for?”

I floundered. I wasn’t sure why I wanted a bone, actually. “Uh, uhm, I uh-”

Foxface smiled like a cheshire cat. I shrugged. “A bone. Please. If you give me a bone, I’ll tell you something else.” Like what, genius? The color of Lucifer’s underwear?

“Oh no, no no no, you tell us what the bone is for, then we’ll see what we do from there.”

I bit my lip. This wasn’t going so well.

“My Name is Chaos”: Chapter Three Part One

Hey everyone! Here’s some more Chaos! I really hope you enjoy it as much as I do! It’s so much fun to write 🙂 Do let me know what you think!

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We have a fifteen minute window. The words kept ringing in my head. I felt like I was on fire. I was ready to blow up and take the world with me. Yeah, let’s do this. Let me show FoxFace what I was made of – Chaos. Chaos here, ready to take everything down. Wasn’t that why I had been offered this mission? Because I rocked, that’s why!

For all the fuss in my head, we just walked out of the lab. Bam. The nerd/scientist slid his key card in the slot by the door, and we walked straight on out. A straight corridor that was dimly lit led us to another door – and that one was to the outside.

It was nighttime. A crisp air, no wait , a freezing air wafted over me. There was an inch of snow over everything. Military cars. Military buildings in low long rectangles everywhere. A few soldiers here and there marching. Above, a full moon.

“Werewolves are out,” I chuckled, pointing to the giant moon. The scientist was not impressed.

“Should we be expecting werewolves?” he asked in that disaffected tone, syringe still at the ready.

I groaned as we walked down the metal ramp and stairs to the ground. “I was joking!” I hissed. “Can’t you tell? Werewolves aren’t on earth yet, you know?”

“Yet?” he asked coolly.

“Well,” I squirmed and grumbled. “Forget it.” I stuffed my hands in the pockets of Thor’s fuzzy checkered jacket.

We crossed the distance between the buildings, snow crunching under our boots. This felt surprisingly boring. Soldiers nodded at the scientist, who nodded back and pushed me along.

“Does no one realize what we’re doing?” I hissed as we entered the second building.

“I told you. We have fifteen minutes. I did away with the guard, and that’s when we’ll be found out. Now hurry.”

Did away with? Well shit, the nerd wasn’t joking around. I scurried after him through a set of doors into this next building.

Here, the faces of the soldiers were dire. They began asking questions, sharp and dry.

“What’s your business here?”

The scientist calmly produced a lengthy paper. “Permission to have this subject meet with the prisoner, to jog their memory,” he said as if he believed it.

With a grunt the paper was handed back. We slipped forward to a series of cells with this soldier in tow. Several other soldiers lined the walls, all grim and scowling at us. We were let into one, and oh hey! There was Thor!

“Hey!” I said so cheerfully. But Thor gave me a death-glare, and another to the scientist.

“What do you want?” he asked the scientist. “And what’s the vampire doing here?” And I was given a nod, but no look.

“Hey, I’m not-” but the scientist spoke over me.

“We have seven minutes to get out of here,” he said sharply. “Get up and come along.” To me, he said “Stand still,” and that syringe jabbed into my shoulder.

“Hey!” I exclaimed, but it was too late. The stuff was in me and the needle drawn out. I rubbed a hand over the site. It was itchy. “What was that?”

“Consider it coffee,” he said dryly as he pulled a pair of safety glasses from his lab jacket’s pocket and put them on. “Now you do your part. Get us out of here. I’ll tell you where to go, but you have to do the people bashing.”

“I can’t kill-”

“Yeah yeah, just knock them out. We can’t just walk out of here with your buddy.”

I blanched, remembering all those beefy soldiers lining the wall. “We have to make it out past them? That we just passed?”

The scientist nodded. “You can do that, right?”

“Is this for real?” asked Thor, getting up off his cot and walking over. “You’re escaping?”

“Yes, if the kid can do it.”

“That’s your plan?” I hissed, angry of a sudden. “Get me to do it all?”

And then – whoosh. It was like hot soap in my veins because it burned. It made my eyes tear up and I knew they were turning red, Holy Immortal kind of red. Not pink-eye. It was maybe also like adrenaline. Soapy adrenaline?

“Oh wow,” I gasped, heart pumping a mile a minute. Even my fingernails felt like they were shaking. My claws were almost coming out of their own. The scientist grinned. “You’ve got this, don’t you?”

I nodded with a gulp. Oh yeah. Bring it on.

The scientist grinned and pulled the door open. “Aprez vous,” he said, guiding me out with a palm.

I didn’t even stop to correct his shitty french pronounciation. I just marched on out like I owned the world, because I did. I was on top of it all. I could feel success in my veins.

“Hey, the prisoner can’t-” Wham! I kicked the first guy in the face. Then, darting forward, I did pretty much the same for the next two. Gut-punched the next one.

Whirr! Whirr! Feathered thingies flew through the air. They missed me by a hair’s breadth, scittering across the floor.

We were half way there when I was surrounded. I didn’t even need to take my pentacle off and let it touch ground, I just made the magic happen. IT glowed across the floor, giant red lines that were pulsing with the magic of hell – and whoosh! I felt another surge of power. Ohhh YEAH! I ran forward, knowing I was invincible for the next few seconds. You could say my inner dice were set to a natural 20. The buddies fell down before me.

Just as I landed the last punch, the pentacle vanished, taking that extra surge of power with it. I paused, taking a breath.

“No! Keep moving!” The scientist hauled me forward by the collar. “Move!”

We busted out the door, out into the cold air. The air burned at my eyeballs, at my lungs. Blood and magic was roaring in my ears. My eyes couldn’t possibly be more open.

We turned and ran to a car. I skidded, then threw myself into the unlocked passenger door. The scientist threw Thor to the driver seat. “Your turn! Drive like a criminal!”

Thor didn’t need telling twice. Pedal to the floor! I fell backwards in the seat, then almost flew forward out the window when we hit a speed bump that certainly didn’t slow us down.

“That way! That way!” the scientist was directing from the back seat, pointing left then right then straight as we zoomed ahead, skidding across the snowy streets. The ‘check out’ loomed ahead. It’s gate was closed.

“Throw this!” the scientist said, drawing a potato launcher style thing out of the back seat and shoving it into my hands. “Just point it and shoot!”

“What?” was all I shrieked. But the gate was coming up! I aimed haphazardly and pulled what I thought was the trigger.

Crack! The recoil slammed me back into the seat. The windshield shattered outwards and the gate exploded just as we drove through it.

It was pretty epic. Fire and flames around us for a minute as we drove off.