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The Guardians / Chapter 28: Malice

The Guardians / Chapter 28: Malice

Posted June 18th, 2019 by Codename-X12

by pensword
in a secret bunker finishing the Guardians

The Guardians are back in chapter twenty-eight of The Guardians! Sorry this one’s late, I’ve just been at a writing camp for the last few days. If you’re new to the Guardians or just need a refresher on what’s going on, be sure to check out another post which has links to all the chapter in order. You can find that post here: https://www.kidpub.com/book-page-or-chapter/guardians-back-3035162865

 

You can find the previous chapter here:

https://www.kidpub.com/book-page-or-chapter/guardians-chapter-27-diablos-keep-3035162894

 

Previously on The Guardians:

 

“Yeah? What is it? You come here lookin’ for someone?”

“Not far from the truth,” Shane replied calculatedly. “We’re here to find Malice.”

 

Chapter 28:

Malice

POV: Brandon Lorensen

 

“Malice?” the man leaned back, chuckling. “There’s plenty ‘a malice ‘round here.”

“You know who we’re talking about,” Devon muttered harshly. I was surprised at how sharp his words were.

“It’s a ‘who’ now, ain’t it?” the man replied. “I don’t know nothing.”

“That means you do know something,” I felt myself speak.

“Smart kid caught me,” he admitted, suppressing his amusement quickly. “What would a smart, talented young lad like yerself being doing ‘round these parts? Seems like it ain’t a place where someone like you would last too long.” His bandanna shifted and I knew he was grinning beneath it.

“Seems like you don’t know a lot about who we are,” I retorted.

“Maybe,” he said, his gaze revealing nothing. “Hate to break up the friendly chat, but you might be wantin’ to get moving if you want to catch Malice before he leaves. Up dem stairs.” He gestured with one knotty finger a staircase hidden beside the bar counter. The ancient, rickety wooden steps twisted up into the hall and disappeared in shadows.

“Why did you just tell us?” Shane asked suspiciously.

“Always try my hardest to help a neighbor out,” he said, his rasp covering any sarcasm.  I shot a suspicious look at Shane, and he nodded without saying anything. He gestured to Devon and we walked off from the table. The masked man watched us go. Then he picked up his knife and began working on carving the fingernails on his other arm.

“You think we should trust this low-life?” Devon asked.

“Well, it’s all we really have to go on,” Shane replied. He sighed. “I think we need to at least check it out. Otherwise our only lead ends here.”

“He’s probably leading us into a trap or something!” I said, feeling that my suspicions needed to be voiced. Even though Shane and Devon probably suspected the same thing. “Do we even need this Mirage’s help?”

“We can’t take on the Reavers only us three,” Shane pointed out.

“What do you think?” I asked Devon, who was probably the most rational of us all.

“We don’t really have much of a choice,” Devon conceded after a second.

“I can take anyone who tries to shoot us,” Shane offered, tapping one hand against one of the holsters at his waist. “Follow my lead. Brandyn, you get ready to kill something.”

“No problem,” I said, grinning. We headed cautiously toward the staircase that lay across the room, embedded in the wall like an open mouth inviting prey inside. A few quick glances were all we attracted from the nearby gamblers and card players as we crossed the room. The rough cement floor scraped softly against our boots as we wove delicately between the tables like it was an obstacle course, careful not to get in the way of any of the drunken, violent-looking thugs. The bartenders exchanged knowing glances behind the steel bar counter as we strode past them on our way to the doorway. I traded their apprehensive glances for a harsh, icy stare of my own, sending them back to focusing on their work.

In a second the bar-counter was out of sight behind us as we took our first steps into the ancient stairwell. A strange, muffled beat of some sort of music seemed to pound from up the stairs. Shane went first, slipping one of his flare guns an inch out of its holster and clutching it firmly. I craned my neck to try to peek around the twisting corner, but up ahead was so dark that I could only see a few feet ahead.

Each step on the decayed board steps emitting a piercing creak like the floor itself was in pain beneath us. Each squeak seemed exaggeratedly loud with each step, like the stairs were protesting our passage. More likely, I realized, to warn whoever was up there that we were coming. The stairway twisted out of sight of the dim main room, the only light now reflected off the damp, shiny brick walls, barely leaking into the twisting stairwell at all.

The music grew louder with each advancing step into the darkness, but I still couldn’t make out the dulled beat. Now that we were safely out of view, Shane drew his flare gun fully from the holster, letting it hang warily at his side. The music continued to mount, like it was rising for some jumpscare moment in a horror movie. Soon it almost dominated the insane creaking of the steps. I could make out now that it was some form of heavy metal, very heavy metal from the way the boards were buzzing from sound waves underneath our feet.

Our cautious steps made it seem to take forever to reach the top. As we made our way up the twisty chamber, I felt like a prisoner climbing a staircase deep within the bowels of a dungeon. Unlike the prisoner, however, I wasn’t sure if I wanted to reach the top.

Eventually we reached the top, of course. A peculiar glow seemed to come from up ahead, changing in brightness like a malfunctioning streetlight. When we turned the final twist on the stairway, we found that the door was open before us. The source of the glow were strange lights beamed through the opening and danced and swayed hypnotically along the cold concrete walls of the passage. It looked like someone had shined a multi-colored flashlight through a kaleidoscope.

“What the heck?” Shane muttered. Devon and I were almost to cautious to dare speaking. We stopped before the open doorway. I traced the darkness with straining eyes, but my eyes hadn’t yet adjusted to the darkness, and everything was obscured and murky. Shane moved closer to us so he could be heard over the pumping sounds pouring from the room. “I’ll do the talking, got it?”

“That’s probably for the best,” Devon hissed back. “I don’t have much experience bargaining with violent gang members who hang out at illegal bars.”

“I probably have more than you in that area,” I replied.

The room beyond appeared to be as old and unkempt as the one downstairs, but it was much smaller and darker. It was so dim it was difficult to analyze the room for potential threats. Anything could be hiding just out of sight or smothered in shadows. It was like all the curtains in a room had been drawn during a sunset, leaving vague, unfamiliar shapes behind.

The strange beams of light were in fact strobe lights, I realized. The rays poured in through rows of open windows that covered the length of the wall opposite us. The empty windows, void of glass, took up a large part of that wall, and it seemed like the only only light was shining through them. Beyond the empty panels I could see a brightly lit old stage.

        The glaring white lights aimed at it just seemed to draw attention to how worn and withered it was. Several performers hammered away on second-hand electric guitars, looking freakish in their ragged leather and with their too-spiky hair. A few thugs milled around in the small crowd watching. It looked like some sort of one-star nightclub. Every third word of the singer's angry tirade was some exotic profanity.

        The rest of the room was occupied by the massive shape of an ancient refrigerator in one corner nearest the doorway, a long ragged leather couch that took up nearly a quarter of the room space, and an enormous throne-like leather recliner in the far corner. Rusty steel racks and old metal storage containers were bolted against the walls to fill much of the remaining wall space, making the room feel sort of like an office at a factory.

        The long leather couch was populated by nearly half a dozen hulking goons. They wore black leather like the rest and somehow looked tougher and meaner than the ones downstairs, if that was possible. The strobe lights played dazedly off their stoney, unshaven faces like they were some kind of crazy psychedelic aliens. Several of the silent men clutched greasy assault rifles. One even held the slender shaft of an RPG, the business end of the missile pointed upwards toward the ceiling. I hoped it was on safety.

           “Do I hear visitors?” a voice suddenly called out.

We all jumped about a foot, whipping toward the cackling sound like startled rabbits. My eyes flew to the throne-like leather chair in the corner. This time, I realized that a dark figure reclined there, sunk back in the shadows that masked the corner of the room. The figure moved slightly, the shape that I knew must be his head swiveling to peer at us.

“I never have a visitor,” the voice cackled twistedly. “And most of the ones I do have look like they don’t want to be here! It’s nice to know someone wants to visit me, isn’t it. Or were you dragged here against your will? That happens too.”

At that moment, a red strobe light passed over that head like a bolt of stray lightning bolt, revealing a face so covered in hideous scars it was barely recognizable as human. It looked like the man had fallen through the roof of a chainsaw factory. The gruesome slashed slitted over one of his eyes, which was clenched tightly closed. The other eye stared at us with interest. His face was so matted and tangled with jagged, twisting dark lines that it looked like a quilt could be knitted from them, or it was an insane patch of weeds that had taken root across his skin.

Then the light passed off him and at once the figure was plunged back into a swathe of murky blackness. “Mikey, tell them to crank off the music,” the voice ordered. “Now! And, by the way, don’t kill the visitor, I think.”

One of the guards hastily raised a handgun and fired it off into the ceiling. I jumped as a stunning crack eclipsed the thundering music. In a moment the song died down to silence. I noticed the ceiling above the man who had fired the round was already peppered with gunshot marks. One of the thugs leaned over to flip a switch on the wall, bathing the room in dim light from a single lone lamp.

In the sudden light, I realized with a jolt that one of Malice’s arms had been severed off at the shoulder. Empty air filled the spot at his side where his right arm must have been.

“Well, if it isn’t Shane Corvo. You’ve got some nerve comin’ here.” Malice chuckled heartily as if he had just heard a terrific joke.

“We don’t want trouble,” Shane said quickly. “We just -”

“You want trouble?” he asked. “I am trouble. I am suffering. I am Malice.”

“Yes, but -”

“The last time Shane and I hang out when he was trying to mess with my shipment of pot.” Malice grinned, like the event seemed to him a happy memory. “I bet you think yer pretty lucky dat my army of thugs I told ter get you ignored my orders.”

“So...then you must know something about the chemical attack?” Shane prompted.

“A few ‘a my guys choked, but there’s always more where dat came from!” he replied. “I’m Malice, leader of the most powerful crime gang in the city!” There was silence for a moment.

“Do I have a visitor!?” Malice asked suddenly, making us jump again. He was looking past Shane at me. The lamplight glowed eerily off his scarred face like a leering jack-o-lantern. “You weren’t kidnapped and brought here, were you?” I was about to reply, but he continued, “Eh, I don’t think it matters. And if I don’t, it doesn’t.”

“Then you know who did it, the Empowered who stopped your members?” Shane prodded, trying to steer the conversation back on topic. A few of the guards shifted restlessly, eyeing us with suspicion. Malice stared absentmindedly out the long paneled window, the scars on his useless eye twitching as muscles worked beneath. His stony, mangled face showed no emotion.

“Empowered...Empowered,” he murmured. A pause. “I had a power...once. Could make things explode, rip to shreds, if I wanted.” Shane opened his mouth to interrupt, but Devon shot him a look that seemed to say we should let him talk. I realized the information could be useful. Shane closed his mouth.

“Then one night he showed up. A stranger wearing dark, with a mask. He challenged me to take over the gang,” Malice continued, looking as if he were most in a rambling tangle of his own thoughts. Trapped in an overgrown maze. Maybe I was lucky not to have been consumed by my past memories.

“So we fought, my gang around me...watching us. He could make things blow up too, same as me.” His vacant eye hole twitched faster, veins throbbing around it. “I woulda won, too, but he...did something to me. I felt horrible fear. Pain in my head. Confusion. That’s how I got these scars.” He gestured vaguely to his entire face. “He blew up my arm. The one who said his name was Armageddon.”

Suddenly he seemed to flick back to the present. “But lucky fer me, I’m left-handed!” He swung his remaining arm up in the air like he was trailing to hail a taxi.

“What about the Empowered who attack your men?”

“The damn poison one,” he coughed. “Ran off toward Farragut North Station, I daresay. Told my troops to go after ‘er, but none of dem even answered. Crazy, huh? Was like dey never even existed!” A moment passed, very slowly. Then Malice exclaimed, “Hey! Whatta ya know, Malice’s got a visitor?” Malice looked at Devon like he hadn’t noticed him at all up to this point. Devon took an involuntary step backwards. “I’m sure you were tied up and brought here!”

Out of the corner of my eye I noticed one of the bodyguards trade a doubtful look to another thug. Did his own goons think he was a little loopy too? Probably didn’t say it to his face, I realized.

“So she just went to the subway station?” Shane confirmed.

“Yea, that’s right,” Malice replied. “Whys you want to know? Is you going to finish her of fer me?”

“Something like that,” Shane answered.

“Well, if you can mess up my dimwit buddies, you can mess her up, I reckon,” the man chuckled. “Hey, you should try out working for me a spell. Could use some talent like yourself.”

“No thanks,” Shane replied bitterly, more vehement than I expected. He looked suddenly angry like he was about to say something like, “I’m not going to lower myself to the level of a scumbag like you”. Fortunately for our lives, he kept his mouth shut. “I believe we’re going to be going.”

“Not so fast.” Malice grinned widely. “You forgot to pay admission. Almost. Good thing I reminded you, right?

Devon, Shane, and I stepped back, faces pale with fear. Malice seemed to see that and he cackled louder, the noise echoing off the concrete wall and ringing through our ears like funeral bells tolling. His eyes flashed wildly in the lamplight, teeth bared in a crazed, jagged smile.

The goons stood up slowly, cautious as they reached for the weapons propped up against the wall. They stared at us harshly, gazes sliding through the air like arrowheads. Their rage-brimming faces were set rigid with the anger of one who has not taken the harsh side of life well.

We would get no mercy from them.

 

_________________

 

End of chapter twenty-eight. As always, any constructive criticism is greatly appreciated!

The Guardians will return on Friday, June 20, at around 4:00 PM (CDT time zone).

The Guardians are back in chapter twenty-eight of The Guardians! Sorry this one’s late, I’ve just been at a writing camp for the last few days. If you’re new to the Guardians or just need a refresher on what’s going on, be sure to check out another post which has links to all the chapter in order. You can find that post here: https://www.kidpub.com/book-page-or-chapter/guardians-back-3035162865

You can find the previous chapter here:

https://www.kidpub.com/book-page-or-chapter/guardians-chapter-27-diablos-keep-3035162894

Previously on The Guardians:

“Yeah? What is it? You come here lookin’ for someone?”

“Not far from the truth,” Shane replied calculatedly. “We’re here to find Malice.”

Chapter 28:

Malice

POV: Brandon Lorensen

“Malice?” the man leaned back, chuckling. “There’s plenty ‘a malice ‘round here.”

“You know who we’re talking about,” Devon muttered harshly. I was surprised at how sharp his words were.

“It’s a ‘who’ now, ain’t it?” the man replied. “I don’t know nothing.”

“That means you do know something,” I felt myself speak.

“Smart kid caught me,” he admitted, suppressing his amusement quickly. “What would a smart, talented young lad like yerself being doing ‘round these parts? Seems like it ain’t a place where someone like you would last too long.” His bandanna shifted and I knew he was grinning beneath it.

“Seems like you don’t know a lot about who we are,” I retorted.

“Maybe,” he said, his gaze revealing nothing. “Hate to break up the friendly chat, but you might be wantin’ to get moving if you want to catch Malice before he leaves. Up dem stairs.” He gestured with one knotty finger a staircase hidden beside the bar counter. The ancient, rickety wooden steps twisted up into the hall and disappeared in shadows.

“Why did you just tell us?” Shane asked suspiciously.

“Always try my hardest to help a neighbor out,” he said, his rasp covering any sarcasm.  I shot a suspicious look at Shane, and he nodded without saying anything. He gestured to Devon and we walked off from the table. The masked man watched us go. Then he picked up his knife and began working on carving the fingernails on his other arm.

“You think we should trust this low-life?” Devon asked.

“Well, it’s all we really have to go on,” Shane replied. He sighed. “I think we need to at least check it out. Otherwise our only lead ends here.”

“He’s probably leading us into a trap or something!” I said, feeling that my suspicions needed to be voiced. Even though Shane and Devon probably suspected the same thing. “Do we even need this Mirage’s help?”

“We can’t take on the Reavers only us three,” Shane pointed out.

“What do you think?” I asked Devon, who was probably the most rational of us all.

“We don’t really have much of a choice,” Devon conceded after a second.

“I can take anyone who tries to shoot us,” Shane offered, tapping one hand against one of the holsters at his waist. “Follow my lead. Brandyn, you get ready to kill something.”

“No problem,” I said, grinning. We headed cautiously toward the staircase that lay across the room, embedded in the wall like an open mouth inviting prey inside. A few quick glances were all we attracted from the nearby gamblers and card players as we crossed the room. The rough cement floor scraped softly against our boots as we wove delicately between the tables like it was an obstacle course, careful not to get in the way of any of the drunken, violent-looking thugs. The bartenders exchanged knowing glances behind the steel bar counter as we strode past them on our way to the doorway. I traded their apprehensive glances for a harsh, icy stare of my own, sending them back to focusing on their work.

In a second the bar-counter was out of sight behind us as we took our first steps into the ancient stairwell. A strange, muffled beat of some sort of music seemed to pound from up the stairs. Shane went first, slipping one of his flare guns an inch out of its holster and clutching it firmly. I craned my neck to try to peek around the twisting corner, but up ahead was so dark that I could only see a few feet ahead.

Each step on the decayed board steps emitting a piercing creak like the floor itself was in pain beneath us. Each squeak seemed exaggeratedly loud with each step, like the stairs were protesting our passage. More likely, I realized, to warn whoever was up there that we were coming. The stairway twisted out of sight of the dim main room, the only light now reflected off the damp, shiny brick walls, barely leaking into the twisting stairwell at all.

The music grew louder with each advancing step into the darkness, but I still couldn’t make out the dulled beat. Now that we were safely out of view, Shane drew his flare gun fully from the holster, letting it hang warily at his side. The music continued to mount, like it was rising for some jumpscare moment in a horror movie. Soon it almost dominated the insane creaking of the steps. I could make out now that it was some form of heavy metal, very heavy metal from the way the boards were buzzing from sound waves underneath our feet.

Our cautious steps made it seem to take forever to reach the top. As we made our way up the twisty chamber, I felt like a prisoner climbing a staircase deep within the bowels of a dungeon. Unlike the prisoner, however, I wasn’t sure if I wanted to reach the top.

Eventually we reached the top, of course. A peculiar glow seemed to come from up ahead, changing in brightness like a malfunctioning streetlight. When we turned the final twist on the stairway, we found that the door was open before us. The source of the glow were strange lights beamed through the opening and danced and swayed hypnotically along the cold concrete walls of the passage. It looked like someone had shined a multi-colored flashlight through a kaleidoscope.

“What the heck?” Shane muttered. Devon and I were almost to cautious to dare speaking. We stopped before the open doorway. I traced the darkness with straining eyes, but my eyes hadn’t yet adjusted to the darkness, and everything was obscured and murky. Shane moved closer to us so he could be heard over the pumping sounds pouring from the room. “I’ll do the talking, got it?”

“That’s probably for the best,” Devon hissed back. “I don’t have much experience bargaining with violent gang members who hang out at illegal bars.”

“I probably have more than you in that area,” I replied.

The room beyond appeared to be as old and unkempt as the one downstairs, but it was much smaller and darker. It was so dim it was difficult to analyze the room for potential threats. Anything could be hiding just out of sight or smothered in shadows. It was like all the curtains in a room had been drawn during a sunset, leaving vague, unfamiliar shapes behind.

The strange beams of light were in fact strobe lights, I realized. The rays poured in through rows of open windows that covered the length of the wall opposite us. The empty windows, void of glass, took up a large part of that wall, and it seemed like the only only light was shining through them. Beyond the empty panels I could see a brightly lit old stage.

        The glaring white lights aimed at it just seemed to draw attention to how worn and withered it was. Several performers hammered away on second-hand electric guitars, looking freakish in their ragged leather and with their too-spiky hair. A few thugs milled around in the small crowd watching. It looked like some sort of one-star nightclub. Every third word of the singer's angry tirade was some exotic profanity.

        The rest of the room was occupied by the massive shape of an ancient refrigerator in one corner nearest the doorway, a long ragged leather couch that took up nearly a quarter of the room space, and an enormous throne-like leather recliner in the far corner. Rusty steel racks and old metal storage containers were bolted against the walls to fill much of the remaining wall space, making the room feel sort of like an office at a factory.

        The long leather couch was populated by nearly half a dozen hulking goons. They wore black leather like the rest and somehow looked tougher and meaner than the ones downstairs, if that was possible. The strobe lights played dazedly off their stoney, unshaven faces like they were some kind of crazy psychedelic aliens. Several of the silent men clutched greasy assault rifles. One even held the slender shaft of an RPG, the business end of the missile pointed upwards toward the ceiling. I hoped it was on safety.

           “Do I hear visitors?” a voice suddenly called out.

We all jumped about a foot, whipping toward the cackling sound like startled rabbits. My eyes flew to the throne-like leather chair in the corner. This time, I realized that a dark figure reclined there, sunk back in the shadows that masked the corner of the room. The figure moved slightly, the shape that I knew must be his head swiveling to peer at us.

“I never have a visitor,” the voice cackled twistedly. “And most of the ones I do have look like they don’t want to be here! It’s nice to know someone wants to visit me, isn’t it. Or were you dragged here against your will? That happens too.”

At that moment, a red strobe light passed over that head like a bolt of stray lightning bolt, revealing a face so covered in hideous scars it was barely recognizable as human. It looked like the man had fallen through the roof of a chainsaw factory. The gruesome slashed slitted over one of his eyes, which was clenched tightly closed. The other eye stared at us with interest. His face was so matted and tangled with jagged, twisting dark lines that it looked like a quilt could be knitted from them, or it was an insane patch of weeds that had taken root across his skin.

Then the light passed off him and at once the figure was plunged back into a swathe of murky blackness. “Mikey, tell them to crank off the music,” the voice ordered. “Now! And, by the way, don’t kill the visitor, I think.”

One of the guards hastily raised a handgun and fired it off into the ceiling. I jumped as a stunning crack eclipsed the thundering music. In a moment the song died down to silence. I noticed the ceiling above the man who had fired the round was already peppered with gunshot marks. One of the thugs leaned over to flip a switch on the wall, bathing the room in dim light from a single lone lamp.

In the sudden light, I realized with a jolt that one of Malice’s arms had been severed off at the shoulder. Empty air filled the spot at his side where his right arm must have been.

“Well, if it isn’t Shane Corvo. You’ve got some nerve comin’ here.” Malice chuckled heartily as if he had just heard a terrific joke.

“We don’t want trouble,” Shane said quickly. “We just -”

“You want trouble?” he asked. “I am trouble. I am suffering. I am Malice.”

“Yes, but -”

“The last time Shane and I hang out when he was trying to mess with my shipment of pot.” Malice grinned, like the event seemed to him a happy memory. “I bet you think yer pretty lucky dat my army of thugs I told ter get you ignored my orders.”

“So...then you must know something about the chemical attack?” Shane prompted.

“A few ‘a my guys choked, but there’s always more where dat came from!” he replied. “I’m Malice, leader of the most powerful crime gang in the city!” There was silence for a moment.

“Do I have a visitor!?” Malice asked suddenly, making us jump again. He was looking past Shane at me. The lamplight glowed eerily off his scarred face like a leering jack-o-lantern. “You weren’t kidnapped and brought here, were you?” I was about to reply, but he continued, “Eh, I don’t think it matters. And if I don’t, it doesn’t.”

“Then you know who did it, the Empowered who stopped your members?” Shane prodded, trying to steer the conversation back on topic. A few of the guards shifted restlessly, eyeing us with suspicion. Malice stared absentmindedly out the long paneled window, the scars on his useless eye twitching as muscles worked beneath. His stony, mangled face showed no emotion.

“Empowered...Empowered,” he murmured. A pause. “I had a power...once. Could make things explode, rip to shreds, if I wanted.” Shane opened his mouth to interrupt, but Devon shot him a look that seemed to say we should let him talk. I realized the information could be useful. Shane closed his mouth.

“Then one night he showed up. A stranger wearing dark, with a mask. He challenged me to take over the gang,” Malice continued, looking as if he were most in a rambling tangle of his own thoughts. Trapped in an overgrown maze. Maybe I was lucky not to have been consumed by my past memories.

“So we fought, my gang around me...watching us. He could make things blow up too, same as me.” His vacant eye hole twitched faster, veins throbbing around it. “I woulda won, too, but he...did something to me. I felt horrible fear. Pain in my head. Confusion. That’s how I got these scars.” He gestured vaguely to his entire face. “He blew up my arm. The one who said his name was Armageddon.”

Suddenly he seemed to flick back to the present. “But lucky fer me, I’m left-handed!” He swung his remaining arm up in the air like he was trailing to hail a taxi.

“What about the Empowered who attack your men?”

“The damn poison one,” he coughed. “Ran off toward Farragut North Station, I daresay. Told my troops to go after ‘er, but none of dem even answered. Crazy, huh? Was like dey never even existed!” A moment passed, very slowly. Then Malice exclaimed, “Hey! Whatta ya know, Malice’s got a visitor?” Malice looked at Devon like he hadn’t noticed him at all up to this point. Devon took an involuntary step backwards. “I’m sure you were tied up and brought here!”

Out of the corner of my eye I noticed one of the bodyguards trade a doubtful look to another thug. Did his own goons think he was a little loopy too? Probably didn’t say it to his face, I realized.

“So she just went to the subway station?” Shane confirmed.

“Yea, that’s right,” Malice replied. “Whys you want to know? Is you going to finish her of fer me?”

“Something like that,” Shane answered.

“Well, if you can mess up my dimwit buddies, you can mess her up, I reckon,” the man chuckled. “Hey, you should try out working for me a spell. Could use some talent like yourself.”

“No thanks,” Shane replied bitterly, more vehement than I expected. He looked suddenly angry like he was about to say something like, “I’m not going to lower myself to the level of a scumbag like you”. Fortunately for our lives, he kept his mouth shut. “I believe we’re going to be going.”

“Not so fast.” Malice grinned widely. “You forgot to pay admission. Almost. Good thing I reminded you, right?

Devon, Shane, and I stepped back, faces pale with fear. Malice seemed to see that and he cackled louder, the noise echoing off the concrete wall and ringing through our ears like funeral bells tolling. His eyes flashed wildly in the lamplight, teeth bared in a crazed, jagged smile.

The goons stood up slowly, cautious as they reached for the weapons propped up against the wall. They stared at us harshly, gazes sliding through the air like arrowheads. Their rage-brimming faces were set rigid with the anger of one who has not taken the harsh side of life well.

We would get no mercy from them.

_________________

End of chapter twenty-eight. As always, any constructive criticism is greatly appreciated!

The Guardians will return on Friday, June 20, at around 4:00 PM (CDT time zone).

 

See more stories by pensword
ooh exciting chapter!! good

ooh exciting chapter!! good as always! one suggestion: either take out “single” or “lone” in the sentence “One of the thugs leaned over to flip a switch on the wall, bathing the room in dim light from a single lone lamp.” bc it’s a bit redundant. btw the chapter is on there twice! your writing is so good!

Please read: http://www.kidpub.com/book-page-or-chapter/colors-chapter-one-2047144754

Posted by starlight (luna) on Tue, 06/18/2019 - 20:55

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