Groaning, he sat himself up, arm snaking round to cradle the smashed ribs. He could see another figure in the dark, someone other than Kelpsie. "That's not Cleric Noon, is it?" He managed, bringing his legs out of the bed. Cleric Noon tilted her head.
"Our temple was raided by Mevolent's men. Destroyed. Pure luck I found Cleric Repine here."
He nodded. "You two still an item?"
"Shut up, Baritone." Her voiced turned sharp and he grinned through the pain.
"I knew it. No amount of imprisonment could hold Repine back from the one girl willing to look at his face and not vomit."
They both came closer so he could see them properly. Repine looked healthier now and Crystalline Noon was the same beauty Baritone remembered. Damn. He still had that stupid crush on her. She leaned over and he found his nose in very close proximity to her chest. He managed to drag his eyes up to meet hers and she smiled. A wicked smile of red lipstick and white teeth. "Stand up, Austin."
"Can't until you do."
She straightened up and backed off. Slowly, he forced himself to his own feet. Noon smiled again. "Whatever were you doing getting into those fights there? Last I heard, you were working with the Irish Sanctuary."
"Had to abort that." He felt quite dizzy. He must have looked unsteady on his feet, because Repine helped him steady himself. "What I was doing was my own personal business..." he frowned and reached into his pocket. His hand closed over something in there, but whatever it was, he didn't remove it. Repine frowned. He led Crystalline away, out of the room, calling over his shoulder. "Austin, you can relax if you want. Hungry?"
"Cool. I'll bring back a sandwich and a drink."
"And maybe something to stop his head injury getting infected." Noon added. Repine nodded and they walked side by side down a narrow street, hands linked.
Repine sighed. "He's hiding something. Normally I wouldn't care that much, but it could be important...and there was a reason I brought him here."
"You wouldn't like it, Crys."
She gave him a look, pressed her lips against his and whispered "Kiss and tell?"
Perseus crept to the cell door, peering through the little hand slot. "They're gone." he confirmed. "All of them. There are dead Cleavers everywhere...but they left. Teleported out. They took your friend, Charles." He looked down at the floor. Clarice was clinging to his left leg. Alice was cuddling up to her uncle Charles.
Metallique darted one way, Frivolidad another. The gaol murderer charged forward, having already seen Fiable release the Gist. Preoccupied with the professional killer and the Gist, Mevolent let the other men past, where they rounded on Hato. They didn't strike immediately. They stood and surveyed their options. Moineau looked to Frivolidad, well aware he was a skilled kidnapper. If anyone would know what to do, it would, unfortunately, be him. The Cuban man simply walked up to the Japanese Elder and gave a backhand slap to her face. She snarled at him and he did it again, smiling. When he went to do it a third time, she caught his wrist and twisted, making him cry out. The cry was lost amongst the dying screams of the others in battle. Moineau took Alice as she ran away from Hato and moved swiftly towards an empty cell. He was going to close himself and Alice in their for their own safety. She tried to break away to go to her father, but the small man held her back, dragging her towards the cell. Frivolidad grabbed Hato's shoulder with his free hand and wrenched while driving his knee up into her stomach. She grunted, he pulled his arm free from her hand and wrapped both arms around little Clarice, pulling her away from the vicious Elder.
"Fall back!" Fiable called breathlessly. "Everyone in here!"
As many as could fit squeezed in, which in all honesty, was not many. Fiable grinned. "I called Cleavers." They sealed themselves in using one of Moineau's keys and watched the fight play out. After a few minutes, they shut the slat and blocked out the sight.
Moineau unlocked the door and they walked out. The murderer who had gone up against Mevolent, Aimee Grippe, lay dead in several pieces. As did her killing companion, Germaine Griffe. Lionel Ame had taken Metallique's place under the desk. "I fought!" He stated in a panicky tone as he saw them, "I get my freedom now!"
Pons Excitacion had been in the cell with them. The fifth murderer, a Bastille Gaufre, was nowhere to be seen. There was a possibility he had joined Mevolent during that massacre. Frivolidad stepped outside for a smoke and the child clinging to his leg finally moved away to stay with Charles. He tapped his fingers against his leg and sighed. After a few minutes, he went to find a payphone. Once that was accomplished, he realised he didn't have his money on him, and even if he had, it would have been in pesos, when here he needed euros. He glared at the payphone. Someone came up behind him, but he ignored them. "Once the Grand Mage comes back, the amnesty the dark-skinned Elder granted will likely be denied or revoked."
"Detective Fiable is seeing to that." he turned and the small bird-like man smiled slightly. "I'd like to use the payphone."
"Yeah, me too..." He moved away and let Moineau through. He listened as the small man made a call to a lady named Pourri or something. They weren't together. The man shifted and spoke as though he were on an errand for someone else. He walked away and Perseus followed him.
The front of the Sanctuary held the stage for a heated argument in French between Surgele and Fiable. Perseus couldn't understand and just leant against a wall, lighting another cigarette. He was standing beside Lionel, who had his fingers crossed. Surgele gave up, pushed Fiable away and walked back inside. The detective ran after him to tell him of the apparent deaths of several prisoners, Detective Yvonne Hoquet and Elder Jasmin Orage. Frivolidad turned to Lionel just as a white-haired woman appeared. Fiable's sister. The two traumatised little girls ran to her and began crying out everything that had happened to them the past hours. The Cuban man watched them pityingly. They had been through roughly eight hours of hell, almost certainly more. His eyes met those of the shocked mother. He felt shaken himself. He held her gaze for a few seconds before his lower lip trembled and he turned and went back inside.
Orage awoke face down on the floor. He raised his head slowly. The room was really warm and stuffy. he was uncomfortable, but beneath his shirt he wasn't wearing anything, and he had the strangest feeling the others in the room would glare at him if he took it off. He shifted slightly and took a look at the others in the room. "Am...Am I in a different country?" He asked rather dumbly.
Grand Mage Thorn sighed. "You're in Australia."
The French Elder frowned. "I was in France not too long ago..."
She nodded. "I'm sure you were. You're in Australia now, though."
"But...but last I remember, I was fighting in France..."
"...Welcome to Australia..."
He groaned. "This is exactly what I promised Surgele would not happen."
Thorn nodded sadly. "I haven't got a clue what's going on in our Sanctuary, but if they put you up for ransom too..."
"It was my express wish that if I was captured, France leaves me." His hand went to his head. He had an awful headache and his throat was so dry. It felt like his tongue was made of sandpaper, with extra stuffed down his windpipe to make things extra awkward. He let out a moan and the Australian Grand Mage rested a hand on his shoulder. "Would it be out of the question right now for me to have a glass of water?"
"Not for long. Our captor's actually quite hospitable...crazy as it might seem..." Elizabeth, Clef and Paris watched from the corner. Reeta and Ronaele were asleep. The French man got shakily to his feet and explored the strange room. It looked to be made of some wood. It looked a bit like a rabbit hutch. There was even sawdust on the floor and some straw in the corner. He hoped that wasn't supposed to serve as a toilet. There was no furniture, but there were bits of disturbed sawdust where furniture had been moved in and out. He stretched his arms above his head and remembered the knife. His hands went flying to his throat and suddenly Elizabeth was at his shoulder. Jasmin was surprised to find the skin smooth, uncut, not even a scar detectable. The Australian Elder guided him to the straw and sat him down. "Been through a shock, eh?"
"They opened up by throat in the fight..."
"Ah...you have two options open to you, mate. Be thankful you're still alive or be afraid they kept you alive for their plans."
"Elizabeth!" Amber snapped, scolding, "that's not helping!"
"Welcome to the trauma club, kid." Elizabeth finished, getting up and banging his head against a wall repeatedly.
"Thank you, Elizabess" Jasmin mumbled, curling up on the straw. It was clean.
Garnet got to his feet as B-J and Advantageous entered the room. "Bee?"
She ignored him and chatted happily to Twist.
"B-J, this is so hypocritical it's unreal. You carry on like this and I'll never help you again. And last I checked, you needed my help to not get noticed. And as efficient cross-country travel. And with plans. I'm of great use to you and you know you're being hypocritical and that deep down you love me for reals."
B-J sighed. Twist walked on without her. She sat on the table and sighed, reaching for some untouched bacon. Garnet made a slight face. "Okay, fine. I forgive you. Where are your little friends, by the way?"
"They've gone off to kill some other people."
"Yup." He sat back in his chair and sighed. "You okay?"
"I need to bring these gloves to Basilisk."
Dorado perked up. "I'll do that."
Maleficent hesitated. "You promise not to kill anyone?"
"Only in self-defence, honest." He grabbed the gloves, gave her a kiss on the cheek and burrowed away. She froze. Did he seriously just do that? Oh well. She laughed as she left the room again.
There was a knock on the door. Mihai looked up and bid the other person enter. Yulianna did so with grace and a forced smile. Mihai looked back down at his work, pursing his blue lips. "Grand Mage?"
"Yes, Miss Skromneyy?"
"I feel I have a duty to inform you of what your fellow Elders plan. They say they plan to use me against Mevolent, but what they truly want is to have you killed."
He arched an eyebrow and tried not to laugh.
"They're not using me. They originally planned to, but you cutting my hand off really...ugh."
"And you're telling me this because?"
"Firstly because you had the chance to kill me, but you spared me. I respect that. You've killed in the past, but yet I'm still alive. Secondly, because if someone else kills you, I'm a failure. If you are murdered, I must be the one to strike the killing blow."
He gave a slight nod. "Believable, but I'd much sooner trust my colleagues than you. I appointed Lumina and Haos for a reason. And I have never killed in my life."
"You have too. And I thought that was what you would say, so I'll just excuse myself." It also was to do with the loyalty sigil on her thigh, she realised as she went to gather her bags, leaving for Ireland the next morning. It was supposed to be set to be loyalty towards Elder Haos, but as Mihai had carved it, Mihai was the one it worked for.
Crystalline stared at Kelpsie in shock. "How do you plan to get Austin to do that?"
He shrugged. "Not entirely sure. He has something he shouldn't, though. Before I can put my plan into action, we need to find out what he has and get it off him. Blaze is seducing his girlfriend as we speak, though. That plays very strongly in my little plans."
((Ending message: Uhhhhh...to go on an adventure with Billy-Ray, you need rubber ducks. Also hehehe, everyone thought Jas was dead. They were wrong. He was never meant to be dead.))