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Rueyn aka The Reaper


Kanata aka The Storm

@ZephyrHope

Ameliya aka Inferna

@Perse


Julia aka The Black Death


@Silver Carrot






The balcony was blissfully empty. Whatever day of the week it was at the time, it was a quiet one and Rue was thankful for that. The demoness peered over the railing and looked both ways at the long, wide-open bar floor below before looking back at the people she had traveled with and was only a little surprised to see that she had acquired a third, unplanned-for passenger.

“Well, hello,” she said. “Welcome to Sanctuary didn’t notice you caught a ride but it doesn't matter now that you’re here. Ameliya, let’s get Mr. Mans over here all patched up and I’ll grab you some clothes.”

“Sorry!” Julia replied, slightly wild-eyed. “I panicked and grabbed on without thinking. I just wanted to get away from there. I don’t want to go back, but I don’t have anywhere safe to go.”

Taking a moment to get her bearings, Ameliya looked around the area and at the empty lounges and chairs. Breathing out a huge sigh of relief, a more relaxed smile started to cross her lips. They had made it. She was free and safe for now.

Getting up she looked over the balcony to get a better sight of the bar before she looked back at the group and her eyes finally landed on Julia. For a moment she looked at her with a raised eyebrow, questioning what she was doing here with them. Ignoring it though as just someone else who wanted to get as far away as possible from the asylum, she turned her attention back to Kanata’s still unmoving figure. “You got a preference for where we move Mr. Selfless Hero to?” she asked Rue with a slight smirking smile, “And maybe a first aid kit?”

“Aye, I have a staff room downstairs with a bedroom we can lay his sorry-looking ass on to doctor him upon,” Rue replied, bending down to carefully look at him for a moment. “Julia, that’s your name, isn’t it? Don’t worry about tagging along, Sanctuary is a safe place for all, regardless of how they get here,” she added, looking at the other woman with her glowing eyes. “Could you please go downstairs, towards the bar on the back wall, and ask for Sunny, tell her the boss is here and needs help with clothing and first aid for me?”

She wasn’t sure what Julia was capable of, knew only that it had something to do with her hands, and figured it was best to keep all of them busy for the time being. She rolled her good shoulder and looked at Ameliya.

“Mind holding these weapons for me while I maneuver him onto my good shoulder?”

Rue offered the scythe and sword to the naked woman.

Julia nodded, knowing she wouldn’t be able to help up here without gloves. She had no way to safely hold or carry anyone, so she wordlessly headed downstairs.

Sunny would see a disheveled, anxious woman in bloodstained prison garb, with several still-bleeding bullet wounds on her arms and legs, descend the stairs and quick-walk towards the bar. She gestured back to the stairs with her thumb. “The boss needs your help. We need some clothing and first aid, too.”

The small blonde woman with brown eyes and a wavy ponytail nodded, looked the bloodied woman over once with a kind gaze, and said, “Stay here, I’ll be right back,” before disappearing in the blink of an eye. She came back a few moments later with her arms full of what looked like clothing, various shirts, pants, some underthings for both genders, and even some leather gloves in various sized pairs for some reason, all of which she motioned for Julia to take and hold.

“Here’s the clothing Boss requested,” Sunny said. “We get donations for both genders because we’re a True Sanctuary so there’s clothing for everyone up there who might need it. I’ll be right back with the first aid and then we shall both go up there together, okay? I can smell something is off with you, something smells like poison to which I am immune, so I would like to dress your wounds once we get there if you are okay with that?”

The blonde barely waited for a reply before she disappeared again to get the first aid supplies. Julia blinked, then looked down and tried to position the clothes so that they wouldn’t get any blood on them as she waited.

Kanata’s brow twitched with knowing that Ameliya had walked into a bar, all eyes on her naked. Forcing himself up, he ignored the pain that shot through his body. Opening his eyes to see the view that stood in front of him. He opened his mouth to say anything but was speechless as his eyes wandered across the sight of Ameliya. Causing a current of air to swirl around him, he floated to his feet. Using his good hand, he swept the hair out of his eyes. With a playful smile, he flashed a grin at Ameliya before winking. He walked forward, slamming his hand against the balcony railing. He stared into her eyes, trying to think of anything to say, but the pain of just standing there was more than he could handle the only words to come out was “Come here often?”

Ameliya held out her hand to take the scythe and sword, thankful that Rue was there to be able to help pick up the larger man. She wasn’t so sure she would be able to by herself, and this made the situation that much easier. Though just as she was about to take the weapons, her eyes were drawn to Kanata’s sudden movement. Watching him, an amused smile started to cross her face as started to get himself onto his two feet and try to act nonchalant. After hearing his terrible pickup line, Ameliya couldn’t help but chuckle at him still attempting to hit on her even though she could see by the way he swayed that he was in immense pain.

Looking up at his cocky expression, it was evident to her that he was not going to be willingly carried anywhere by Rue. So with a sly smile, she sidestepped his attempt to corner her and made her way over to the empty lounge she had spotted earlier. Slinkily sitting down on the worn leather seat, she looked back at the injured man unsteadily standing on his feet. Patting the seat next to her, she called out to him, “Come lie with me on the lounge tough guy, before you fall over.”

Kanata’s face lit up with a smile at her invitation. Taking a step forward, all the exhaustion and pain that had been building up forced his body to collapse. Using the remaining energy he had, he caused the wind to carry him next to her and landed his head on her lap. Looking up at her with a smile he said: "This is a nice view," then turning his head he stared down, at the two who were standing there watching them. "Rue, do you mind letting your poor old injured pops have some alone time with my new woman?"

Rue watched and sighed in resignment as the stubborn male lifted himself to his feet using his wind ability, a cheesy pickup line dropping from his mouth with a tired, pain-filled voice that sounded like he’d seen better fights, even as he swayed on his feet. She had no idea how he managed to even stand let alone make a quip like that but she also couldn’t blame him for being stubborn enough to try to woo the female of his affections, she understood that all too well. Her mate had wearily smiled at Rue many a time after a battle had knocked her on her ass only for Rue to stand right back up and make some terrible quip about how the other guy looked worse. She watched as they both eventually made their way to the worn leather lounge seat and rolled her eyes in good humor, walking over with tired feet to stare down at Kanata with glowing eyes, her scar a stark contrast against her face.

“You can have some alone time after you both have had any and all of your wounds tended to and after Ameliya has adequately covered herself to her desire, ‘Pops’,” Rue quipped. “Now stop being stubborn and rest, you took a fuck ton of damage back there and I intend to dress your wounds at the very least. At least once Sunny gets here and wraps my wrist for me. You’ll like her, she’s a bloodsucker and a kicker of ass.”

Ameliya had been looking down at Kanata with tired amazement that he had just taken her invitation for him to sit next to her as a reason to lay his head on her very naked lap. Though as she heard his comment, she just rolled her eyes and let it go. She was in too much of a good mood after having to escape to consider this a problem. It wasn’t like she hadn’t already considered thoughts that went further than this after all. She had just much rather that one-night stand than this weirdly too comfortable situation.

Looking back up at Rue, she smiled thankfully before then asking the question that had been on her mind since she had seen them both fight. “So are either of you going to tell me this whole daddy thing you two got going on, or am I just going to stay in the dark forever?” she asked with an amused smile.

Rue choked on her spit with surprise as a laugh startled out of her at her fiery friend’s question and turned to her with wide eyes and a shake of her head.

“You got a fuckin hell of a way of asking why I referred to him as my father,” she chuckled. “He found me as a kid and took me in, taught me almost all I know about how to fight with my scythe and what a family feels like.”

Kanata didn’t know what this feeling was that built up in his chest as he heard Ameliya say, daddy. But what he knew is that he wanted her to say it to him. Looking at Ameliya he said aloud, “You can call me daddy. In fact, I would like you to,” with a wink and a chuckle.

Chuckling at how she was somehow able to fluster the larger demon, Ameliya mulled over the information she had just been given for a moment. She knew for a fact that Rue was a lot older than her, so how old did that exactly make Kanata? How many hundreds of years would he be if he had met her as a child? Looking back down at him, she tried to read him for a moment but instead found herself somehow actually pleased that Rue’s answer had not been one that meant the two were in some kind of romantic relationship. A light blush started to cross her cheeks, as she started to question herself.

Though that was when she heard Kanata’s comment. She looked down at him with a raised eyebrow, and not being able to hide the playful smile on her lips she said, “Ahaaaa, well daddy it’s bold of you to assume that you’ll ever see me again after tonight.”

As the words left her mouth and reached his ears, his heart skipped a beat. Never had he thought that he'd be so turned on by the word, but somehow Ameliya saying it did just that. Then the sudden realization of the afterpart hit his mind. With a loud laugh, he looked at her seriously and said, “Let's go, somewhere more private. Once you get rocked like a hurricane by The Storm, you'll never want to leave.”

A chuckle escaped from Ameliya’s lips before she looked at him incredulously, “I think you are forgetting the fact that you just lost an arm.” Placing a hand down on his chest, she looked over his wound before then playfully adding, “Heal up, and then we can discuss hurricanes.”

Turning his head away from Ameliya. He remembered that he was trying to ignore the loss he had incurred from their escape. With a heavy sigh, he said, “Yeah, probably a good idea.” Looking at Kanata as he turned his head away from her, Ameliya raised an eyebrow as she wondered where all his bravado had gone.

“Someone said my name?” Sunny appeared at the top of the stairs, arms full of first aid supplies, Julia standing by her side with her arms full of the clothing Rue had requested. “I brought the supplies as requested, Boss.”

“Aye, there’s my favorite waitress and savior!” Rue cheered, turning to greet her as Sunny set the supplies down on a nearby table. “Could you please bandage my wrist really quick? It’s half-healed but it needs wrapping and you’re fast and efficient.”

“Aye, Boss, you got it,” Sunny replied, smiling at everyone with the radiant smile that made customers love her so much. “And then I will be helping you,” she said to Julia, “Your wounds need tending next, and I’ll see what I can do about that poison in your system.”

Julie put the clothes down, and sat in a chair. It took mere seconds of not moving for the adrenaline to wear off and the pain to catch up. She almost visibly turned several shades paler in that period. “Don’t worry about that. It’s not poisoning me…I don’t think. Just don’t touch my hands.”

“Aye, of course, thank you,” Rue replied and held her injured right wrist out to be taken care of as Sunny walked over with a roll of gauze and bandage tape. “And thank you, Julia, for helping Sunny and fetching her for me. I am grateful. If any of you need food and drink, it’s free of charge while you are here. Healing is more than medicine and bandages. OW! FUCK ME THAT HURTS!”

“Shit, sorry, Boss,” Sunny apologized, her hand having jarred Rue’s still deeply sliced wrist that was still being bandaged shut. Blood seeped through the bandage, making Sunny wrap it more and apply even more pressure which caused Rue’s jaw to grind as she dealt with the pain.

“It’s fine. Hurt is all.”

“So,” Sunny drawled, obviously trying to approach what was an awkward question. “I take it prison time is over and these are your new friends? And I take it staff didn’t appreciate your escape to freedom? And does anyone need anything to eat? To drink?”

“Water,” was Julia’s weak reply. She wasn’t hungry, just thirsty. In fact, her stomach was still churning. She’d been watching the other three. She felt a little envious, but it also gave her hope that there could be something resembling a normal life and social circle on this side of the law. “Are there job openings here?” she then asked suddenly.

“Whiskey,” Ameliya said speaking up as she looked over Julia and her suddenly very pale-looking face. She hadn’t properly seen her wounds before but now looking at them, she couldn’t help but wince slightly. It looked as if she was one of the few lucky ones to have managed to get out of there without any major issues. In a way, she guessed she had Kanata to thank for that. Quickly taking the waitress’s questions as a distraction, Ameliya attempted to answer the rest of the questions that were asked, “We’re out, they did not take kindly to it and a couple of us need some patching up.”

“Well, it’s a good thing I’m practiced at patching people up. I won’t touch your hands, even though the poison likely wouldn’t affect me, being undead and all,” Sunny replied, finishing up Rue’s bandage with a piece of bandage tape before walking over to Julia. “Okay, I’m guessing the poison is a mutation of yours? That would make sense, but anyways, show me your wounds please?”

“Aye,” Rue replied to Julia, cradling her now bandaged wrist to her chest. “We are always hiring more staff, especially if they need a leg up, so to speak. I’ll go get drinks and food, Y’all stay here and talk to Sunny, let her dress your wounds. She used to be a doctor.” Julia wordlessly nodded and began removing her prison garb and exposing her bullet wounds. She had to stand up to roll her pants up, before slumping back down. It was clear from her wincing that standing hurt. It was amazing she could move up and down the stairs mere seconds ago.

And with that, Rue walked downstairs to the bar, down where they couldn’t see her anymore. She came back about five minutes later with a large round serving tray balanced on her good hand, four glasses of water and four glasses of alcohol on it, as well as what appeared to be a plate of steaming hot pretzel bites?

“Water, whiskey, pretzel bites,” she set the tray down with the grace of a practiced server on a third, unused table before sitting down at the chair it belonged to. Her posture seemed weary, the glow of her eyes a little dim as the weight of their escape and her injuries heavy on her shoulders. She had broken ribs from where Kanata had thrown her into the elevator shaft walls with his air attack, and a few pierced organs that were painfully healing even as she sat there. But there wasn’t much Sunny could do for those.

Kanata looked at Sunny as she briefly looked over at him waiting for him to get up. Then after staring at her for a few seconds, he turned his head the other way, getting more comfortable in Ameliya's lap saying "I'll heal on my own. I'm much too comfortable right now to move''.

Looking from the tempting drink that Ameliya craved since the escape, she then looked back down at Kanata who was stopping her from getting up at the moment. Watching him making himself more comfortable in her lap, her carefree smile dropped. “Don’t get used to this,” She stated before then looking back at Sunny and to the table filled with treats, “and take her help and heal up already. I have better things to do than be a cushion.”

With a heavy sigh, Kanata started to pout looking away from Ameliya.

"I have an insane amount of regenerative capabilities. My arm will regrow in a few days and my wounds are an hour or two,” a mischievous smirk played across his lips as he looked back at Ameliya, noting the drink her eyes kept darting at. "I'll get up if you agree to go on that date with me today."

“I’m going to need that drink if I am ever going to think about going on a date with you,” she replied flatly then looked up at the other girls and gestured for some help over here. The only reason she hadn’t pushed him off her yet, even with his wounds at the moment, was the fact that she did feel like she owed him slightly for trying to protect her. Well, that and maybe some other feelings she was not going to admit to herself, let alone anyone else.

"Okay, I'll get up but seriously, I can't move unless someone helps me up," Kanata said as he wiggled trying to move upwards.

Through another cloth-muffled scream, as a bullet was taken out of her arm, Julia shot a death stare at Kanata and removed the bundle of rags she had been biting down on.

“You’re the one in the best condition to move out of all of us if you have the energy to flirt,” before stuffing the rag back in her mouth and sitting back on the chair. She’d gotten paler, but that was on account of the pain of being treated.

Sunny gave the young woman an encouraging smile as she dropped the bullet into a small tray with the other ones, a small clinking sound being made as she did so, saying, “You’re doing such a good job, young miss, I’m almost done pulling them all out. And then we can bandage you up nice and neat.”

"Ah, for one so young to make judgments on a poor, injured old man," making fake crying sounds Kanata looked up at the ceiling as a sad expression covered his face. "Oh, how I weep for this generation picking on me".

Snickering laughter came from Ameliya as she heard Julia’s angry words, she was not wrong. Looking back at Kanata as he started to lay it on thick, she came to the agreement that he was doing just fine. After all, he had said he would heal by himself after a couple of days. Pushing him off her lap, Ameliya got up and headed towards the table where the welcoming whiskey lay.

Slamming into the ground, Kanata stared into the floor. Muffled talking could be heard "I can't get up still".

Ameliya picked up a glass of whiskey, and with an amused smile as she looked at Kanata, took a long drink out of it. After she heard his muffled talking, she couldn’t help but chuckle at the sight of him. Sculling the last bit of the whiskey, Ameliya put down the glass and walked back to Kanata to help him up, “I guess you were telling the truth about not being able to move.”

Rue rolled her eyes at her adoptive father figure’s dramatic, thirsty antics and looked over at her fellow redhead with a raised eyebrow.

“He may be my father but damn he acts like a child, doesn’t he?” she mused, her tone conveying, hopefully, that she was only teasing him. “Fussing and whinin’ about how he just wants to be between the pretty lady’s arms and oh woe is me.” She dramatically laid her left hand (her good hand) across her brow at the last part and made a sad face before laughing at her own joke.

“Here, though, you should put some clothes on,” she said, standing up with a groan as her broken bones and injured organs protested the movement and picked out a shirt and pants from the clothing pile to hand to Ameliya. “Human torch or not, I bet your skin gets cold just being all exposed like that. These should hopefully fit you.”

Gratefully taking the pile of clothes from the larger woman, she set them down on the lounge. She had found a clean pair of panties in the mix and started to pull them up, then she looked at Kanata. Putting on the underwear before walking over to Kanata with another glass of whiskey in her hand. She helped him to a sip of the drink before whispering, “Let me get some clothes on, and then we will see about that date.” Smiling at him warmly for a moment, she then quickly headed back to her pile of clothes and hoping that no one had noticed her slip up of warmth. She didn’t need the group of inmates thinking she had gotten soft.

Rue eyeballed the pile of clothing, sorted the shirts from the pants and gloves before picking out a black button-up with pale grey accents and black jeans, and then began to undress. Well, that is, undress with her left hand as best as she could. She managed to shrug out of her ripped right sleeve of the overshirt and undershirt with little effort but it was getting it over her head that was the issue. The shirt kept getting stuck on her right horn until it finally came free with a loud ripping noise. Then the boots were unlaced with relative ease and toed off, and the pants were shimmied down her hips, leaving her dressed in only her black underwear and matching sports bra.

For once, Rue didn’t care if they saw the various scars that littered her body; the ones in her groin area, her thighs, her upper hips, her chest. The demon mark covered by a large rose tattoo, the thick layers of heavy whipping scars that covered her back and shoulders, and the backs of her thighs and upper calves. The shackle lines around her neck, wrists, and ankles. The bruises around her ribs in the back area where her back had hit the elevator shaft wall didn't help matters.

Rue struggled to put the shirt on, her upper body protesting every movement and the pain was just getting to where she finally let out a growl of frustration and stood there with just her left arm in the sleeves, staring at the ground with glowering eyes. She didn’t want to ask for help but if someone were to offer she wouldn’t refuse.

Having slid on the tight pair of black pants, Ameliya was putting on the dark red v cut shirt over her head when her attention was caught by the ripping noises coming from Rue. Looking over to see her red-headed friend standing there in her underwear, she couldn’t help but curiously run her eyes over her body and take into account the number of scars that she had. Though as she saw the big bad demon have trouble getting her arms into a shirt, she couldn’t help but chuckle.

“Let me help with that,” Ameliya said with a playful smile, as she walked over to the other woman. Looking over the predicament with a smile that couldn’t help playing on her lips she recommended, “Lift your arms up as much as you can.”

Rue looked up as the other woman walked over and told her to lift her arms up as much as she could, and, gratefully, she obliged, raising her arms up as high as she could, being careful not to jar her right wrist. Getting behind the other woman, Ameliya grabbed hold of the shirt before getting on her tippy toes to then help lower the shirt down around her other arm. As the shirt slid down and she managed to get both her arms and her head through the shirt, she smiled before looking around to see how Rue was doing.

“Better?” Ameliya jokingly asked.

“Aye,” Rue replied with a grateful smile of her own that was tinted with a slight blush at the very top of her cheeks where the flesh met bone. “But uh, I may need even more help with the pants and relacing my boots… I’m sorry, my other hand is utterly fucking useless right now.”

The demon couldn't help but feel embarrassed that she had to be helped into her own clothing. She was grateful that at least said clothing seemed to be the truly magical one-size-fits-all kind.

Staring daggers at Rue, Kanata spoke up after much quiet, "Rueyn your servant can do that".

Fiery eyes landed on Kanata, he did not just say that. Since when did she need permission to help a damn friend?! Glaring at the injured man, Ameliya grit her teeth, She hadn’t even agreed to go on one date with him and he was treating her like -

“Just because you saved my ass back there, doesn’t mean you fucking own it,” Ameliya growled out as her eyes seemed alight with fire.

All she had wanted to do was celebrate her newfound freedom, maybe even have some fun. Yet here she was in the middle of some god damn drama between a father figure who she felt she owed, and the daughter figure who she considered the closest to a friend that she had made in the institute. It was all too ridiculously complicated and stupid. Normally she would have left by now, but after all, they had been through together, she couldn’t help but feel like she needed to stay. That being said, she didn’t have to stay right here and listen to this shit. “There is nowhere near enough alcohol here for me to deal with this shit,” Ameliya grumbled, before walking barefoot down the stairs and towards the bar.

Though she had discarded her prison garb entirely save for the rolled-up pants, Julia was now wearing enough gauze and bandaging on her top half to be considered modest. Once Sunny had finished with her legs, she got up, grabbed one of the glasses of water, and gulped it down in seconds, before taking a second glass and repeating the process. She then grabbed a white shirt with some sort of skull motif on the front, and slipped it on gingerly, careful not to let her arms move too high. It looked baggy on her frame which only made it look even more punky than designed. She returned to her chair and sat down. “Thank you, Sunny,” she added, not to seem ungrateful.

Moving hurt. Walking hurt. Putting on that shirt by herself had been agony. Why did she rush at those guards? She wasn’t a seasoned villain. She didn’t have useful combat abilities or superhuman attributes, outside of the fingers and palms of her hands. She completely lacked skill and experience, and if she was going to stay free, she needed them both…

Sunny gathered up the bloodied bandages and gauze with a smile at Julia and said, “You’re most welcome, I’m happy to help others heal. Especially humans. So fragile. You should eat a few pretzel bites and drink more water, you lost a lot of blood.”

Rueyn whipped her head over at Kanata to glare daggers right back at him.

“Sunny is not my servant,” she snapped. “She’s a waitress and a healer. That’s what I pay her for. I’m not encroaching on whatever claim you think you have on this woman so shut the fuck up with your jealous attitude. If I could snap my fingers and just be clothed like my friend the cat goddess does then this wouldn’t be a problem, but I don’t, so don’t come at me sideways when I’m standing here with one hand to do shit with cuz your ass took my other one out of commission.”

Rue was in a grouchy mood at that moment. Julia sighed and looked over at both Rue and Kanata. “Being helpless sucks. Yeah, I get it. You all probably aren’t used to it anymore. Back there, in the Prison, I spent most of the escape hidden under a table. I couldn’t breathe because of the tear gas. I couldn’t fight my way out. It was Kai who found me, licked the gas off me, made me want to get up and get out. You two…Yeah, you’re helpless. That just means you’ll need to help each other for now. So stop yelling. You’re giving me a headache.”

Rue looked over at Julia’s words, listening, then sighed, wincing as it made her bones agonize inside her body, and admitted inside her head that Julia was probably right. She wasn’t used to being weak, even when the dampeners took her power away she still had physical strength and that had kept most of the other inmates away but now even her strength couldn’t do much for her, and lashing out at her father figure wouldn’t do her much good, even if he technically started it first by referring to Sunny as a servant with a jealous tone.

“My apologies,” she said to both of them. “You’re right. I am weakened and it fucking bothers me. Father, I offered you my help and will continue to do so but I cannot simply let you talk to me or Sunny like that when we are in my territory, it’s disrespectful. I simply needed help and was given help. But if it bothers you so godsdamned much, father, I just won’t put on any fucking pants until the wrist that you sliced in the elevator has healed. Aye, it was a battle that I technically started but to be completely fair, I did not recognize the man holding the scythe that was gifted to me by the only father I ever knew before I was enslaved again as a teenager. So, forgive me and my harsh tongue, I suppose.”

Turning to look at his arm a wave of anger and hate at his weakness as he gritted his teeth took over. Frustration at losing the fight was one thing. But he looked weak not only in front of the woman he liked but also his daughter who found her way of speech and personality being way different than the little girl he knew. She grew up in a world of pain. He could see that and he hated it. Kanata's eyes filled with rage before hearing the words that Julia spoke. Then hearing Rue’s words made his heart ache. "I watched you die. To this day I remember every moment of that night. Your body was lifeless in my arms and I buried you." Tilting his head back he let his hair fall over his face hiding the pained expression from the others.

"Now the little girl I once loved as my own who I thought was gone appeared in front of me after so many years. Changed from the pain she endured after I left unknowing of what she was going through and how much I put her through by not being there. I couldn’t protect you then, I could barely protect Ameliya now. My body isn't healing for some reason and I don't know if it will. The woman in front of me who despite all that grabbed hold of her own place to call home I'm proud of."

"And the woman I like has stormed out cause I acted like a child" shaking his head in frustration and with a heavy sigh he said, "I need a smoke.”

“You… you… you buried me?” Rue’s voice rasped in a way it hadn’t before and her face became unreadable with smoke. “How?”

"I buried you the way of a samurai." He said looking away, not wanting to continue the conversation anymore. After a few seconds of silence, Kanata felt the sensation starting to come back into his body. Twitching his finger a large gust of air popped a cigarette out of his jacket pocket and into his mouth. Looking around he tried to find a way to light it. Seeing as there wasn't anything he could use he sighed looking down at the ground.

The end of his cigarette lit up as a flame came to life right in front of his eyes. A flame, that was actually probably a little too big for just lighting a cigarette. "Miss me?" Ameliya asked cheekily, as she came up the stairs chuckling to herself. Within her left hand was a bottle of whiskey that was already 3 quarters empty. Looking over the group, she hoped that things had calmed down but not really feeling like asking about it she instead headed towards an empty chair.

Throwing herself down in the chair, she had a silly smile on her face. Now, this was more what she thought of as a celebration for escaping. Looking towards the bottle she then seemed to remember something and turned to Rue, “I made a tab, well I said I was with you and they just gave it to me but I will pay you back.”

Rue said nothing in response but met Ameliya’s eyes with an amused gaze of her own, simply chuckled a little, and shook her head before her expression returned to the unreadable mask it was before.

“I’ll be right back, I need a moment to myself,” she rasped, her voice was gravelly with unshed tears and raw emotions as she walked away from them, setting the pants she had been holding onto the back on the table, not caring that she was clothed only in a shirt and her underwear still. She disappeared down the stairs and towards the bar, heading into a room behind the bar.

Sunny frowned where she stood and looked back at the other three, saying, “I’ll be right back as well, I’m going to check on her and make sure she’s alright. The last time she did this she drank half of our entire stock of red wine. That’s five wooden barrels, by the way.” And with that, the blonde-haired vampire followed her redheaded boss.

Kanata sat forward taking a deep breath of the cigarette before realizing he couldn't take it out of his mouth. Trying to speak with his mouth and the cigarette not falling out his words came out a bit muddled "I eed ome elp it is". He said moving the cigarette in his mouth hoping someone would understand.

Rolling her eyes at his situation, Ameliya forced her heavy body to get off the comfy seat and strolled over towards Kanata. Bending down on unsteady feet, she plucked the cigarette from his lips before taking a deep drag herself.

Slowly breathing out the smoke she then slinked down on the seat next to his head and commented, “Why did you start smoking if you can’t even lift your damned hands?”

As the cig left his lips Kanata looked up at Ameliya and said: "Thank you and I'm sorry for earlier I had no right to go off the way I did, I don't own you..."

Once in the room, Rue headed straight for the armchair in the corner and sat down into it, bringing her feet up to her chest and face into her knees as she finally let the tears fall. She heard the door open and close softly, heard the familiar breath pattern and footfalls that told her it was her favorite blond vampire friend coming to check on her. Rue didn’t lift her head, simply let the sobs begin to make themselves heard as she realized that her father hadn’t left her for dead because he had believed she was already dead. He’d buried her and honored her the way he’d taught her to honor people once they were slain or passed away. It was more than she expected, it wasn’t what she had expected.

A wider smile grew on Ameliya’s lips as she looked down at him. Damn right. Carefully moving one leg over him, she positioned herself so she was sitting just above him with one leg on each side of him. Leaning down over him, she offered him the cigarette as she quietly joked, “And don’t you forget it.”

Taking the cigarette back he took another puff before leaning back and getting comfortable between Ameliya's legs.

"’Is oesn ount as he ae," tilting his head back waiting for her to take the cigarette back a red tint showing on his face. Looking down at him like he was a special kind of stupid, she then took the cigarette from his lips as she thought that it was a good thing he was cute. Raising an eyebrow at him she then asked him, “Want to try that again?”

“He-he thought… thought I was dead,” Rue cried into her knees, not looking up and Sunny’s heart ached, not having seen her boss like this since her mate and child were killed twenty-two years ago. “So he buried me like a warrior, the way of his people, the way he taught me. Do you know how much honor that holds?”

“I do not,” Sunny replied gently, laying a hand on Rue’s shoulder with the same gentleness that she used when she was with her daughter.

“I thought… I thought he just left me,” Rue sobbed, lifting her head to look at Sunny with dimly glowing eyes, making the other woman’s heart ache. “The last thing I remember before going into death-stasis was of him leaving me to die. They were all around us and he just left me.”

“Who was all around you?” Sunny asked gently. “Death-stasis?”

“My slavers. They finally caught up to me after twenty years. Death-stasis slows the heartbeat to a near-stop, giving a death-like appearance but allowing the being to begin healing from what would be fatal wounds and is a last resort.”

“So you went into stasis to escape?”

“I had to, or I would have died for real. I guess they didn’t want a seemingly dead slave so they left me for dead as well, and he came back after they were gone, found my limp, unresponsive body, and assumed, like they had, that I was dead.”

“Look at it this way, Boss; he and his only child are attacked by people that wanted to take her from him, she’s badly injured, he thinks she’s been killed, he comes back and finds her unresponsive body, covered in fatal wounds that no one should be able to survive. What else can a grieving father do besides bury his child? I can only imagine the anguish he must have felt, thinking his child had been taken from him and having to bury her. But you’re not dead, he didn’t abandon you, you survived those fuckers and you killed them all once you were strong enough to track their miserable asses down to exact revenge. Not all is lost. In fact, I would say a good ass chunk has been regained, wouldn’t you?”

Rue looked at Sunny and wiped her eyes dry, thinking on her words, and sniffled. Sunny was right. She wasn’t dead, Kanata hadn’t abandoned her, he was still here, he had never forgotten about her, something that had been proven even way back in the prison elevator when he had had her scythe, knowing it was hers and wanting it with him because it didn’t belong anywhere except with her or with him.

“You’re right,” she said, voice raspier than normal from crying. “We should go back to the others so I can get my pants on and reconnect with my father.”

“That’s a good idea, c’mon,” Sunny held out her hand to help the tall demoness up, which she took and Sunny hauled her to her feet out of the chair. “I’ll make you a Reaper’s Cinnamon Stick, too, and I’ll bring more soft pretzels up.” And with that, they both headed for the door and the balcony where the other three were still sitting.

Chuckling lightly, Kanata smiled and said, "Yeah sorry, I said this doesn't count as the date.”

“I would fucking hope so,” Ameliya replied with a large drunken grin on her face, “You can’t even stand at the moment.”

The feeling in Kanata's arm seemed to return then to the rest of his body lifting his arm up he stretched out and held out his hand for the cigarette.

"It seems being around you has helped me heal faster. You must be my lucky charm,” he said with a wink.

Ameliya burst out into laughter that had as much to do with the bad pick-up line as it did with how much of a buzz she was starting to really feel.

Julia was glad that people were starting to get along. She took a handful of pretzels and another glass of water, before turning to the other three.

“You can all fight, right? And it sounds like you taught Rue,” she addressed Kanata. “I can’t go back to any other kind of normal life now I’m an escapee, and I don’t want to go back to living on the run in fear again. So while I’m working here…can you teach me how to fight?”

Kanata stared at Julia and asked what she was asking.

"Do you know what you're asking? Being trained by me doesn't simply mean I teach you how to fight. Being trained by me means you become my disciple and an extension of my clan. Everywhere you go you'll be known as a student of The Byakko of the east. It requires a huge amount of responsibility to uphold the name and title." Kanata looked into Julia's eyes searching for any sign of doubt. But all he saw was pure determination bringing a smile to his lips. Bursting out in laughter, Kanata said "Sure I'll teach you. From here on out you either refer to me as Master or Sensei." Turning back to Ameliya he coughed and got serious.

"I have never asked to teach anyone before but if you're willing Red, I would want to teach you as well. You are strong and I can see the resemblance of training but your moves are reckless. If you want to become strong enough that no one can ever mess with you again then you should join me as well,”

Outside the door, Sunny split from Rue to head to the kitchen for the drink and pretzels while rue headed for the balcony stairs and made her way up to them, discretely wiping away the tears from her face before they could see her, and heard the last bit of something Kanata was saying about training.

As Rue returned to the room he turned to her seeing her face he knew she had been crying. "You are joining them. You don't have a choice after the fight in the elevator, you need to be retaught. You were careless and it cost you your arm. Had it not been me you would be dead. Also, it would be nice to spend time with you again after all this time apart." At the last part, he looked away with a tinge of red on his face.

“I was partly careless because I didn’t care but you’re right, practice and some time together would be nice,” she replied softly, walking over to the table where her black jeans still lay on the table and just staring at them with a tinge of hopelessness. How was she supposed to get these on? She didn’t want to ask for help, she couldn’t explain why but she just didn’t feel right asking anyone else for help getting dressed after Kanata’s reaction to Ameliya helping her with her shirt and she wasn’t going to ask Sunny because she felt it wasn’t part of their dynamic. The dynamic she had with Sunny was more of a professional friendship than a casual one, even though she considered Sunny family.

There just were certain things you did and didn’t ask certain family members to do and this was one of those instances for her. Rue sighed, looked over at her father for a long moment, noticed he was smoking a cigarette, and was amused that he lit up in the designated smoking area without asking or realizing, then back at her pants and sighed again. Just how the fuck was she supposed to get these on?

Seeing Rue go back and forth between looking at him and her pants, Kanata sighed. Leaning his head back once more he let Ameliya take the cigarette from his mouth once more. Getting up with a wink, Kanata said to Ameliya, "I'll be right back. And once I am back we can have some more fun."

Turning back towards Rue he walked forward grabbing her pants and walking into the other room turning his head back at her he said, "Come on, you fool.”

Holding the cigarette between two fingers, Ameliya’s eyes followed Kanata out of the room before his words seem to really have sunk in. Bright embers sparked off her bare skin as she attempted to nonchalantly take another drag of the cigarette, pretending that his words hadn’t excited her.

Back at the institute, when she had said fuck it about going on a date with him, her mind had immediately gone to a little bit of 'fun'. Though certain things had changed any plan of that. Half-dead people tended not to be interested in fucking after all. Now though… she was hesitantly excited. If he was up for it, it would definitely be a better last goodbye before she skipped town.

Rue silently followed Kanata down the stairs and into the room she had just been in, surprised that he knew where to go, but then again he likely had watched her every step when she left so as to make sure she was okay. She knew that he knew she’s been crying, he’d watched her cry herself to sleep for twenty years when they had spent their time together as father and daughter, after all.

“Helping me get dressed, just like you used to?” she asked softly.

Rubbing the back of his neck, Kanata grunted, "Well, yeah, that was the plan." Holding his hand out in front of him he squeezed, getting a grip on the returning feeling then walking next to rue he grabbed one side of the pants and told her "grab the other on three we pull together. I realized I can help but I can't do it alone."

"Alright,” she replied, grabbing the other side of the black jeans and preparing to stick her legs in, balancing herself with her tail, the bone-colored scythe-shaped end waving as she did so. Together, they managed to get first one of her legs and then the other inside the pant legs, enough that Rue could pull them up past her hips with one hand.

“Thank you, father, this would have been a lot harder without your help,” she said, tugging them the rest of the way over her hips with her left hand as best she could.

"Of course," clenching his fist as he turned to walk away he rubbed his hair roughly before turning abruptly and saying, "I'm sorry for snapping at you earlier" than quickly turning away he rushed out the door a tinge of red on his face having not apologized in a hundred years.

Rue could only smile in response as he rushed out of the door after abruptly apologizing and shook her head as her left hand finished buttoning her jeans .and tucking her shirt into them, following him out of the door and heading into the kitchen to see what Sunny was up to.

As the time ticked on and Ameliya finished the cigarette, she was starting to become more aware of the silence between her and Julia. Looking over at the younger girl, she stubbed the cigarette out and commented, “For your first time getting shot, you dealt with it a lot better than I did.” Thinking on it for a moment she muttered out, “I could not stop crying.”

She didn’t think it would be important to mention exactly how young she was when she had her first bullet wound. Instead, she got up on woozy legs as the world swayed around her and went to find out exactly where the others had gone.

Julia silently stared at the floor, and sank deeper into her chair as she was left alone on the Balcony for the moment. It probably would have been normal to cry when you were shot. It was probably normal to be afraid of guns, or to feel crippling guilt when you take a human life. Julia, though, had run out of tears.

As kanata and rue parted ways he noticed Ameliya walking down the stairs. With a sharp inhale and exhale he walked forward running his hand into his hair throwing it back out of his eyes. Walking forward he quickly appeared in front of Ameliya, her gaze set on him only for a moment before he grabbed her by the waist and pushed her against the wall. Slamming his palm against the brick he looked down at her with a mischievous grin he leaned in close and kissed her.

A giggle escaped from Ameliya’s lips as she tipsily stared up at him, even now with only one arm he somehow managed to make her heart skip a beat. Grabbing the collar of his shirt, she pulled him in closer and kissed him deeply.

Pulling away Kanata let out a growl he gripped her by the waist and lifted her up over his shoulder. Walking back down the stairs kanata kicked open the staff lounge walking in and having the air slam the door behind him. As he reached the bed he threw Ameliya onto the bed before undoing his jacket and dropping it to the ground.

As the night went on, one by one the customers would finish their drinks, pay, and leave. By this time, Julia was in bed, clothes wrapped around her hands so she didn't accidentally touch her own skin in her sleep. She was in a room with a real bed, and a toilet. She had an en-suite shower she could use in the morning. This small comfort to look forward to made her smile slightly as she closed her eyes and looked forward to a new day in a way she hadn't for a very long time.
Tobias stared at the business card, lying on his bed. There was no work today as some equipment was in need of repair, so Tobias had the day to think. He came to this city to help people with his gifts, but there were so many professional Heroes, with costumes and manpower, who were more powerful than him. There were villains who were more powerful than him. And there were people who were neither in a strict sense, like those he had seen yesterday, who were more powerful than him. He wanted to protect the little people from the damage of the big fights, and he'd been trying to, but there were so many others here who found out first, and could do more to help. Was he really qualified to be here on this mission? It wasn't as if he had a real home to go back to, or that many close friends he missed. He could just stay here, put more focus on this job, and just try to live a good life...

He picked up the opened letter that had arrived today, that had strangely addressed to him;

"To Tobias,

You won't know who I am, and I don't really know who you are. But I observed your fight with one of the thieves who robbed the Museum yesterday. I want to talk to you in private about your potential. Meet me at the following address."

The rest of the letter was just an address for what the internet stated was a standalone office building in the industrial park, or possibly a warehouse. No business registered, but it wasn't abandoned or derelict. Tobias decided to bite the bullet and call the number on the business card. The mysterious Demon from yesterday might be able to shed some light on what was happening and what he should do. But the number was answered from a woman who stated that the owner was out on business and to try again later. So Tobias decided to head there and check it out. He had no other plans, and his curiosity was burning.




Opening the door to the foyer, Tobias saw that it appeared to be an insurance company, but for for volcano victims? This was fishy. That was obviously a front of some kind. The receptionist was an exasperated, out-of-breath, red-faced man in casual business attire. Upon seeing Tobias, he squinted at him, checked a clipboard on his desk, and peered back at Tobias, before his eyes finally lit up.

"Ah, you're the German one! Tobias! Yes, please enter the door on your left."

A door mechanically slid open on Tobias' left, leading to a descending staircase. Tobias opened his mouth, but deciding against questioning it. This was either some Superhero thing or a Supervillain thing. Either way he probably shouldn't stray too far from the beaten path. He nodded his thanks, smiled and waved farewell at Greg as he stuffed his hands into his tracksuit pockets and headed down the stairs.

The room at the bottom was dark, but the lights turned on when entered, and immediately a lot of machines suddenly whirred to life. The door back up shut behind him, and before he could truly register what was going on, his body was moving to dodge kunai that had been fired directly at him. He rolled back to his feet and started running as more machines started firing at him. Supervillains, then. This was a trap. To kill him. Most likely related to those blue men he fought. What had he gotten himself involved with?!

The kunai machines thankfully had long intervals between firing, and they weren't aiming at him as much as firing kunais in random directions while spinning. But there were a lot of machines. He was trying to let his instincts take over. His sharp eyes caught any that might be coming towards him from the front. His hearing picked up the whistle they made from behind him as they sailed through the air. Tobias knew, any ordinary person without his powers would be dead by now, and even he was having a lot of lucky near misses. There was no exit to this room that he had the concentration to spare to locate, but if he stayed here much longer, he'd either get unlucky or get tired. And then he was dead.

That's when he saw it. An air vent, high up on the wall, almost at roof level. He diverted his course to sprint to it, and with a leap, started scurrying up the wall. The adrenaline, superhuman strength, and sheer will to live was making up for the lack of purchase by *making* purchase on the smooth concrete. When he reached the grate, he grabbed it and yanked it down with his full body weight, ripping the screw plugs from their holes, and quickly scampered inside. He was now crawling up the building's air vents.
Against Tobias alone, three of them were getting hits in but ultimately losing the fight despite their numbers advantage. The kid couldn't fight properly but he could take a hit, and he could sure as hell give one. Against the girl, three of them were no match for her. Now a third had shown up, who from what they had seen, could probably have taken all six of them alone. The remaining two blue-garbed men looked at their three foes, looked at each other, and then bolted.

Tobias cast a glance at Fiadh. "Whether you take that or the museum does makes no difference to me. They stole it first, from whatever country it came from. Plus, it's probably safer in your hands." He turned his attention to Flauros, eyes flaring defiantly. "Let him go. You don't need to hurt him any more than he's already been." Tobias knew that if they fought, he'd lose very quickly, but he banked on the fact that the prospect of a fight wasn't worth it to this stranger. Plus, if they would fight Tobias just so they could kill a prisoner at their mercy, they needed to be fought and stopped anyway. Tobias came here to save lives, and to help people. And that's what he was going to do.

@Lurking Shadow@Silverstein
The teen was still sore but had gotten his breath back. This girl definitely wasn't human either, She looked semi-reptilian in nature, but wasn't dressed like a Hero. The six identical blue men weren't exactly acting heroically either, sneaking around carrying a large box that was apparently stolen. So this girl was trying to get it back. Was it stolen from her? No, there was a more pressing issue here.

"I am definitely not leaving if you're going to kill them," he replied in accented English. By now, the blue men realised they wouldn't be able to outrun them *and* lift the crate, so were stepping away from it, towards the two of them. Tobias didn't want to fight. He'd never been in an actual serious fight in his life, but if he was going to help people out in this city, he should probably get some experience fighting bad guys.

"Sure, I'll help. I'll take the three on the right," he stated, before running at the right flank of the group, veering off path, and using his momentum to do a wall run to gain some height before pushing off from it and delivering a kick to the nearest blue-barged thief that sent him sprawling. It hadn't taken him out of the fight, but for the immediate present, he only had to fight two of them. Well, it was time to see how everything he'd worked for so far helped in in a real fight.

The two foes had an advantage in both skill and experience, but Tobias's reflexes helped him dodge and weave most of their attacks, and the speed and force of his punches helped him get in some good, powerful shots before they were able to take protective measures. By the time the third re-joined the fight, Tobias was stinging in a few bruised areas but both of his foes were looking worse for wear and wobbly on their feet. One of them was even bleeding from a forehead wound. They were cautiously circling him. Tobias used this very brief respite to glance at how Fiadh was doing. Hopefully, nobody had died yet.

@Lurking Shadow
There were fights and explosions happening today. There always were, every single day in this city. And despite that, plenty of people loved here who were neither Heroes or Villains, relying on the business of one, the other, both or each other to make a live. Better-off people had long since moved away, scared of being caught in a crossfire. The working class people who stayed, or worse, moved her and put their lives on the line the low cost of housing and the abundance of vacant jobs and gaps in the market, were people that in Tobias' eyes were worth fighting for. He hoped that it was also the case for others, but a lot of Heroes he'd seen on the news and TV were in it for the fame and adoration, or saw it like a game. Tobias wondered if, behind the outward presentation, how many of them still kept in touch with the reason Heroes were needed here.

Ever since Tobias moved here, everyone had been incredibly nice to him. He had taken up a daytime job at a bakery in exchange for room and board in the vacant one-bedroom studio apartment above it. Having a whole living space to himself was a surreal, peaceful yet oddly lonely experience compared to the German orphanage he was used to, or the open-air camping he had been doing in the few months it had taken to hitchhike from Bremen to Grailham City. So, when he wasn't working, he tended to keep himself occupied with long walks, to familiarise himself with the city.

Tobias stopped, and pulled down the baseball cap. He could smell something odd. Six people. Or rather, six of the exact same person. They were nearby. He looked around him to check that nobody was looking, then ducked into an alley, before scurrying up a three storey high wall. Once on the roof, he crouched low to keep his balance and started to follow the scent, which was close by but getting further away. He then caught sight of them on a quiet street below. Six men, all dressed in blue, carrying a box between them. This was definitely some kind of Hero or Villain business, but Tobias was curious and didn't have any more pressing plans, so he tailed them from the rooftops, easily managing to keep up because despite their speed and fitness, they were still carrying a large box.

He'd never tailed somebody before, and had no experience, teaching or training. If he did, he'd have probably have kept a further distance, as he lost his footing on some loose tiles from a slanted roof and fell crashing to earth by way of several bags of garbage to break his fall. He was too close for them to not to notice, to not have seen this kid fall from the roof. Tobias slowly and gingerly got to his feet, Man, that hurt! The wind had been knocked out of him from that fall. He flashed the six blue strangers an awkward smile and a wave, before leaning against the brick wall, trying to get his breath back so that he could even talk to them.

@Lurking Shadow
I am so down for this! CS coming soon
Julia Kray





@Blazion@Eviledd1984@Perse

Julia had not been one of the protesting voices when Kai had tried to get into the elevator. She hadn't been paying any attention to that. Even in the chaos of the situation, she felt safe being in a metal box full of people in the same situation as her, with the same goal as her. For all the differences, for how she wasn't a part of this world, there was still a kinship. She felt safe to reflect on her actions. Taking a life had been far too easy. She acted on impulse, without thinking. Just like last time. Just like the police. There was still shock, and guilt, and dread. But she wasn't upset. She didn't want to cry this time. She didn't feel numb either. Her adrenaline was still in high gear, her body still on alert.

Kai's familiar voice brought her back. She'd eaten a lot. No kidding. If it had been anybody else but Kai who turned out to be the monster that was ripping guards to pieces back there, she'd still be scared of them. She looked back out to the hallway as the doors started to close and saw that the guard she had touched was missing. It immediately clicked, and her head snapped back to Kai, alarm and panic in Julia's eyes.

"Kai! You ate the guard I killed?! Are you okay? Is there anything wrong?!"

After Kai's assertions that she was fine, Julia let herself relax a little, and as the elevator started to move, she heard sobbing. She followed it, making her way to Abby. She was slumped on the floor, a mirror of Julia herself the first time she'd ever broken down. Also, Abby appeared to be talking to someone. Whether it was a symptom of mental illness, communication with a ghost, or both, it ultimately made no actual difference to Julia. She looked down at Abby with, not quite pity, but an expression that merely communicated 'First time, huh?'

The elevator finally stopped, and the doors opened to reveal more blood and more dead guards. So, the power outage had done more than free everyone in the cafeteria. Good. Julia caught herself. Countless guards were dead in front of her eyes, part of it her fault for being a part of the plan and taking Kai's muzzle off, and the first thought in her head had been 'good'. That was messed up.

Abby was freeing somebody else. Julia turned her attention to the two seemingly children. One she recognized as the Sweet Poison Killer. It was so strange seeing what had always felt more like a myth, or a campfire horror story than truth. Here he was, in the flesh, looking not a day older than the old photos. But the other boy was covered in blood, and had such an unhinged look in his eye, that a shiver went down Julia's spine. Here she was, looking at two children, and the real Sweet Poison Killer wasn't the scarier of the two. This was a Supervillain prison, all right.

That's when she saw him. A heavily scared man, with a blade for an arm, ordering them back to their cells. This wasn't an escaped villain. Or a Hero. They had powers, and were also staff here. Julia had seen her other prisoners fight, and thought that they'd all be more than a match for this guy. But she wasn't. Even when the redhead offered out handguns, Julia turned to her.

"If all of us can't kill this person, I don't think giving me a gun is going to help. But..." Julia looked down, and finally removed her other glove, tossing it to the floor. She turned her attention back to Novis. Even if he had some sort of healing factor, surely she'd be able to put a strain on it, if she could just safely get close enough to grab him, hold on, and live.
Julia Kray





@Perse@The Man Emperor@Restalaan@Eviledd1984@TheRedWatcher@Klumsykrow357@KaelRavenheart@SrslyAnArtist@Blazion@ZephyrHope

Most of the fighting in the corridor had subsided as Julia raced to the elevator, smoking gun in gloved hand. Her eyes were still streaming from the tear gas that she had cowardly chosen to stew in while the others were either unaffected or had moved on to the corridor. The floor was slick with blood, though, and Julia slipped, lost her balance and fell hard, knocking the wind out of her. The gun clattered from her grasp and slid away out of reach. Forget the gun. Julia shakily got back to her feet and ran, slower and more careful this time, though that was making her take longer to reach the elevator most of the other had already reached.

She was finally almost there, when she was tackled by a guard in full riot gear, who was already grasping at her arms to try to restrain her. Powered by nothing but adrenaline and fear, she thrashed at first, and let out a shrill, gut-wrenchingly desperate "NO!!" Again, before her rational mind could comprehend the weight of her actions, she acted instincually on self-preservation. Just like the police, and just like the guards. She shook off the glove on her right hand, and then grabbed the exposed skin of the guard's face, and squeezed. That was no accident. That was intent to kill.

She desperately crawled to the elevator, too panicked to get up, and made her way inside. Only then did she get back to her feet, and look round at the guard. The veins in his face had all turned black, as had his eyes. He was choking in panic and agony as the poison spread rapidly throughout his body. He was still alive and convulsing when he fell to the ground, the excruciating pain and terror still showing in his facial expression.

Julia looked away. She had turned pale, and her breathing was deep and labored. Her eyes were defocused and in shock. Her now bare right hand was being subconsciously covered and shielded by her still-gloved left hand. She didn't look at anyone. She didn't say anything.
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