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Where am i? The question ringed out in his mind as Raziel looked to his surroundings. It was a city, at least the ruins of one from what he could tell. The sky was black, devoid of the light of the stars and the moon. A cold wind swept through the streets that shook him to the bone. Wait, he could feel it? It effected him? Sapphire eyes looked about, trying to find any sign of life. “Hello?” He called out, taking slow steps forward. what was this place? Why did it seem so familiar to him? He couldnt tell. He didnt like this place. He attempted to leave. To step into that space between dimensions but… he couldnt? What was going on?

The sound of scuttling behind him caused him to turn. Yet there was nothing there. He couldnt sense anything… period. He didnt like this at all. The sound of whispers carried on the wind drew his attention back towards the location he had been heading in the first place. With no where to go but forward Raziel decided it was time to get moving. The whispering continued. Getting louder and louder. Yet, still so familiar. Finally, it stopped and Raziel stood before a great blackness. In the black he could not see. within the darkness the daemon god could feel something… something that felt a very mortal chill up his spine.

Raz didnt know how long he’d been gazing into the abyss before a sound caught his attention. The sound of a bell rolling towards the ground. His eyes looked to it to find a small silver… fortune cookie? What? No! He took a step backwards. His heart was pounding. The terror was real. Fear… how had he forgotten fear? “Raziel…” A voice whispered from the blackness that caused Raz to look back upwards. What did he see? There was no language in the human tongues that could describe the sight. The horror of the face staring back at him nor its sickly smile. “No…” Raziel whispered. “No… i killed you! I KILLED YOU!” He roared in horror. The face moved closer towards him and the shadows moved, engulfing him. “No! NO! DONT TOUCH ME!”

Raziel woke up in a start from his nightmare on the cold hard ground. What? No. He’d fallen asleep in… He looked around. The smell of rot catching his attention. He was in a church to some deity that he couldnt name. The body of its clergy impaled on the long candle sticks and holy icons. The gore of the scene almost too much. Intestines spread up in the rafters like party streamers. Heads on pikes and bodies strung up like macabre marionettes by the sinew of their muscle. What had happened? What had he done?

  1. [A good read! Sorry, I am not being a petty stickler, but in the first line, did you mean ‘rang out in his mind’? Not ringed.]

  2. Allegra Gliss 3 years ago

    Maslin made a non-committal grunting noise in response to what Jack said before looking back at Allegra. “I was surprised when he personally responded but knowing that man, he’s heard rumors of the Construct and since the request was an unorthodox one…. he might be curious. He has an eye and taste for the exotic and rare, and nothing is more rare then you right now. Be on your guard and do not make any deals that would cost you too much. You will be held to them. He is not a man to cross. If this doesn’t work, we are not without options.”

    Allegra listened to both Jack and Maslin carefully, absorbing what both men had to say and biting her lower lip in thought. After a moment she nodded to Maslin and spoke. “Right, well we don’t know his price yet, so nothing else to do but talk to him and find out. Make the call, Maz.”

    Maslin nodded and stepped back, keying coordinates into a transmitter and just moments later something that looked like a falling star but was most decidedly not one, streaked across the black sky, cutting a path through darkness and only slowing down when it reached about a thousand feet above ground before landing softly on the rocky sand.

    “OSDT? Nice! I haven’t gotten to do one of those since training. What a rush.” Allegra observed with excitement, shooting Jack an eager smile. “That’ll be fun when we come home.”

    “You are very strange, Allegra.” Maslin told her, unable to imagine why anyone would enjoy such an experience.

    “Irredeemably so.” She agreed before falling quiet and watching the doors to what was essentially a rocket powered trackless elevator open. Seven men walked out and Maslin tensed, placing his hand on his weapon.

    “Easy, Maz. Let’s not piss him off right out of the gate. I’ve got this.” Allegra told him quietly before stepping forward with a slight smile to meet the notorious smuggler. Her eyes studied the man, and Allegra found he was not at all what she had expected. He was dressed impeccably in a finely tailored business suit complete with silk tie and he looked more like a refined gentleman of breeding and class than any smuggler she had ever encountered. Though he walked with a cane and a slight limp, there was something in his demeanor that would not inspire Allegra to bet against him in most fights. His gaze was keen and intelligent, just as she was studying him, he was also studying them.

    “Miss Gliss, what an unexpected pleasure to encounter a woman of your beauty and charm in so desolate a place. It’s a pleasure to make your acquaintance. I was informed by our mutual friend here,” Those keen eyes flicked towards Maslin, “That you had some possible business that you wished to discuss?” He greeted her by name and with a slight incline of his head. His voice was smooth and calm with a trace of an accent even Allegra could not quite place.

    “Mr. Lord, charmed, I am sure. I appreciate you taking this meeting and yes, I do have a proposal for you. Myself and Jack Riley need to be taken off world for a meeting and then returned back here to Belladonna.” Allegra replied with the utmost respect.

    “Well, well, Mr. Jack Riley, the famous handler. How very unexpected.” Lord said quietly, though his tone implied that it was not actually all that unexpected, he just wanted an additional moment to think things over. “Well, it seems our mutual friend left out a few rather important details, Miss Gliss. I did not think there were any Constructs left, and yet here you stand.” Allegra opened her mouth to reply, but Lord held up a finger to stop her. “Choose your next words carefully, Dearie. I do not usually do business with people who lie to my face.”

    “I had nor have any intention of lying to you, Mr. Lord. Yes, I’m a Construct, that much is obvious. But there’s a reason I survived.” Allegra replied.

    “Oh? I’m intrigued, what reason is that?”

    “I’m special. The only one of my kind and I am less than 5% artificial.” She glanced at the man on Lord’s right, the one who had a cybernetic arm prosthesis. “That man next to you is 12% artificial, just to offer some context.”

    Lord laughed softly. “Oh I believe you are special, Dearie. But if you’re special, that means this job is special. And special costs extra.”

    “Of course I’d want to see you compensated generously for your assistance. Tell me your price.” Allegra calmly replied.

    He tilted his head to the side and studied her for a moment. “Well the going base rate is 250,000 com-marks….”

    “Maz, let me see your kinpad.” Allegra requested, holding out her hand. Once she had the device she quickly went to her account and pulled it up, setting up a funds transfer in the proper amount and showed it to Lord. “Just enter in an account number and the transfer goes through.”

    Lord took the pad, glanced at it and handed it off to a lackey who punched in the proper numbers before handing it back and pulling out his own kinpad. After a moment he looked up and nodded to Lord who then returned the kinpad back to Allegra.

    “Alright, you’ve just paid the base rate, but as we said, this is a special job so I want a special payment. A smart woman like yourself probably remembered to take her own blueprints before leaving Earth, just in case, am I right?” Lord inquired, a smile on his face, but one that had an unmistakable edge to it.

    “Yes. I have my own design safely stored.” Allegra replied, her expression and her tone giving away nothing. She could feel Jack bristle as he guessed what was coming, but she remained calm and tried to share that calm with him through their bond.

    “Then that will be my special fee. A copy of your design plans.” He informed her.

    “Not a chance. I’m sorry but there is no way I am sharing those plans with anyone, and that includes you.” She replied in a tone that left no room for ambiguity or negotiation.

    Lord’s eyes narrowed at her and he sighed. “What a shame that we won’t be able to do business after all. I’ll keep the com-marks as compensation for my time. Good night to you, Miss Gliss, if you change your mind, do let me know.” He turned around and headed back to OSDT pod.

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