After I gave Ian a rough talking-to... No, I'm not going to start thinking about Aretha again... I decided to make my move on Ren. I wasn't going to get a better time than this- he was completely alone, and by the time his friends realized he was dead, I would be long gone. He headed out of the pub into his car- I had never paid much attention to models, but this one looked expensive- and drove away. I doubted he'd go far enough for me to have to teleport, so I shadow-traveled to keep up.
Eventually he pulled up in front of a coffee shop, and he didn't notice me coming up behind him until I hit the back of his head, hard, and he went down. I teleported both of us to the center of Manhattan- an alleyway within walking distance of the Sanctuary, and one I knew no one would be walking down anytime soon. Finally, I thought to myself as my lips twisted upwards in a cruel grin, I get to have some fun.
Ren made his face into a snarl as he walked back to his car. Ian got on his nerves so bad sometimes... Ugh! He hated it! He had just slapped the love of his life for Pete's sake! Who knew where Death was now? Probably back with that dammed Mevolent! If he was to face that creep again, he'd need coffee. He drove his beautiful red car to the nearest café, feeling uneasy...
'Just the knowledge of going back to the castle,' he assured himself as he started walking to the café. The smell of coffee was strong as he took a deep breath. Something hard cracked him across the back of the head. The world spun and suddenly he was in an alley. He didn't know where the alley was but it was dark and cold. "Who the hell are you?" He gasped as he rolled onto his back. He couldn't see who it was though, his eyes were so blurry. There was movement above him and he groaned. He didn't like this, not one little bit! He felt for the soul of whoever was there.
I felt Ren reaching out for my soul, and smacked my elbow over his temple to keep him distracted. The only real challenge fighting someone like him is not letting him gather his thoughts long enough to take my soul. Easy.
I kicked at his knee and heard the satisfying crunch of bone as it shattered and twisted inwards unnaturally, bringing him to the ground. I held him there with shadows and placed my foot on top of his shattered knee, gradually pressing down harder and harder.
Ren roared in pain. Damn did that hurt! Shattering knee caps was not something you'd like to do to him... It just made him mad. Ren maneuvered his other leg around the man's and kicked upwards then to the side, knocking the guy over. Ren shot back up the yelped as weight was added to his bad leg. He fell back down and punched wildly in the air. 'Ian!' He thought. 'Get your wallowing butt over here!' The was no reply.
"Sorry," I replied, my voice smooth and elegant as I smiled maliciously, "Ian went to chase after his girlfriend. You're on your own." He tried punching out, but clearly panic clouded his mind and none of the hits made contact. Typical. I sent shadows to wrap around his arms and pull, pinning him to the ground. I stopped just short of tearing his arms out of their sockets, and kicked him in the head just hard enough to give him a splitting headache.
I had almost forgotten the elation that came with hunting- hearing a victim cry out helplessly as the life slowly drained from their bodies. Nothing in the world could match that pleasure, I was certain. If Aretha was here right now, she'd kill me- or try to, anyway... I thought to myself. I pulled out a knife, drove it into Ren's shoulder and twisted till that wicked gleam returned to my eyes. I won't think about Aretha. This is how I started- this is how I survive.
"That friend of yours... The one I was sent to help," he struggled, "Ari. What would she think?" Ren grinned through the pain. Bring a physic was useful for guilt trips. "I know you relationship is hard and uncaring but you need to help her Bob... Don't turn into Hitler." Did this guy even know that Death had called him Bob Hitler? He doubted it. Ren spat upwards at the man and he heard it hit him. Serves him right!
For just a moment, I faltered, my twisted smile dropping. "She would do whatever it took to save your life, whether she knew you or not. She'd try to stop me- maybe try to kill me. That's why she became an assasin." I snapped my fingers and dropped a ball of fire on Ren, letting it burn through just the first layer of his skin, slowly, and my lips curled slightly upwards again.
"But you're wrong about a few things. My name isn't Bob Hitler, for one. Second, our relationship isn't hard or uncaring- that's just me." I stitched his lips closed with a small shadow- it wouldn't stop him from talking telepathically, but it would cause him that much more pain anyway. "Thirdly, if my plan for her fails this just might save her life, so there's nothing you can say that will stop me. How unfortunate for you."
Ren grimaced. He hated the smell of burning skin! Ugh! It reminded him of hair straighteners and hair straighteners reminded him of a girl he used to date.
'Man! Aretha needs you! She doesn't need me dead! If she needed that, Death'd already have done it!' He shouted on his mind, 'she'd do anything for her friends, even to kill one for the greater good!' He was pretty sure the blood loss was making him lucid, not a good thing...
Ren kneed the man's groin with his good knee and knocked him over again. He would not go down like this, he would die a heroic death.
"Death doesn't know what I'm planning. Also, she trusts you- I don't. In fact, I don't trust her either. Trusting anyone- even myself or Aretha- would be a mistake right now." Then he kneed me and I doubled over- so I shifted into a wolf and sank my teeth into his leg, tearing off a chunk of skin. I dug my claws into the newly formed gash and tore downwards, expandng it. If he had the impression he could still leave here alive, he was mistaken.
Ren roared again, he was surprised that no one had heard him. The damned guy was eating him! His leg was killing him!
He leaned forward, thankful ths shadows had gone and punched the wolf in the nose. Something cracked and he smiled.
Ren knew he was a goner, it was obvious. He'd never been a good hand-to-hand fighter and this guy outmatched him one hundred to one.
I felt a hard snap and knew my nose was broken... Oh, well. It wouldn't slow me down. I shifted back into a human to regain control of the shadows, and healed myself quickly.
Suddenly, Ren grinned. He closed his eyes and relaxed, listening. Meditation was handy in these situations. He listened to the sounds around him, water splashing on then pavement, the thicker splash of his blood on the ground, the scuttling of rats in the bins and reached out to grab Bob's soul.
He had actually smiled... What the Hell? Oh. Meditation. So he was one of those people... And then he felt a tug on his soul. I swore out loud. That meant I couldn't have any more fun with him- and I hadn't tortured anyone in so long!
The pull became stronger, and I started to feel lightheaded- I fell to my knees beside him and crushed his rib cage with my right hand; with my left, I pulled another knife out of my coat and slit his throat, right where I had stopped Aretha from cutting hers. That would do him in for sure. Then it was as if my pupils expanded until the entirety of both my eyes was black, and pulled Ren's true name from his body into my own.
Ren struggled for breath, his blood was trickling down his neck and he coughed. He felt his magic draining from him.
'Ian' he thought with the last ounce of his of strength. 'Save your girl... My brother...' There was another awareness in his head, frantic, assessing his damage.
'Ren! No!' But it was too late. The light swirled away and all the strength left him.
Aretha's note: Do not come after Death with your torches and pitchforks! Come after me instead!! She felt really bad for killing Ren- I, on the other hand, am not sorry at all. Enjoy!