AN: So yeah. Editing is hard. This is as much as I can do right now. It also needed quite a bit more of work then I thought it would. The rest of the story is sure to be just as fun to edit. Joy. Well at least I got like half of what I wanted to get up. Yay for small victories! Anyways this is the story that I wrote for NaNoWriMo. It’s pretty okay.
Things that Bump in the Dark
Chapter 1: Beginnings
Well this is a great big mess…
Date: October 24th
Subject: RE: Mission
Understood, I’ll take a look into it, but don’t you think this may be a bit far-fetched? I mean [REDACTED] so close to a city full of people? Even if they had a [REDACTED] like you said, I don’t think they would be so ballsy. Well I’m nearby anyways, so I should arrive at [REDACTED] in about a day, I’ll do my best. This isn’t another recruiting mission in disguise is it? Because I swear if I have to bring some newbie back to HQ again I’ll… [END OF TRANSMISSION]
October 26th 4:20pm
Train to Central Station
“It was an ordinary day, in a rather ordinary town, no one would expect anything out of the ordinary to happen, and they were right, nothing is going to happen today. Tomorrow, the same, but next week…. on knows what could happen.” A man with short black hair sporting a suit jacket and pair of jeans muttered to himself as he typed on a laptop. The train suddenly came to a stop causing several of the overhead compartments to burst open. A women seated behind the man screamed in surprise. The man’s eyes left the screen for only a second to look up towards his own overhead compartment. The compartment closed gently by itself and then man brushed a hand through his hair before returning to typing.
The man, who was quite obviously unperturbed by the sudden stop and the resulting chaos that occurred because of it, stifled a yawn before closing his laptop. He stood and placed it into a messenger bag over his shoulder. Glancing causally at his watch, the man let out a small sigh.
“Well. It looks that even with that delay at the beginning of the train ride; I still got five hours until I need to report back. What do I do now…?” Muttering to himself the man exited the train, and walked towards the barricade that blocked his exit from the station. He casually waved a hand over the ticket slot and a small blue spark could be seen for a second hovering over the slot. The small LED over the slot turned a bright green and the man still as bored as ever left the station. As he opened the door towards the outside, he spotted a small coffee shop across the street.
“Well then, I guess I can go grab some coffee.” The man, with a semi-visible jump in his step, crossed the street, taking care to dodge the rather haggard looking cyclist that came dangerously close to running over him, he entered the small shop. Walking up to the counter, the man stifled another yawn before brushing his hand through his hair once more. A rather petite blond waitress smiled at the man from across the counter, “Hi! Welcome, how can I help you?” The man glanced at the menu that hung above her, “Just a black coffee, thank you very much.” The waitress’s smile ever resilient didn’t disappear at the man’s rather curt response. “One moment please!”
As the waitress turned her back and began to fiddle with the coffee machine, the man stifled another yawn before glancing outside the display windows towards the street. Suddenly the man’s entire body tensed, all hints of tiredness in him disappearing. He stared out through the window his eyes growing wide under his sunglasses.
“Er- are you okay?” The sudden question from the waitress brought him back him from his slight daze. The man blinked twice his gaze still not leaving the windows.
“Yeah, I’m fine. Don’t worry about it.” Turning back to face the waitress he took his drink from off the counter and walked off towards a table next to the window.
“Maybe I’m just imagining it.” The man nodded to himself before putting down his drink. The man then proceeded to open his bag and pulled out his laptop. After a couple of button presses and some waiting the man began to type rapidly on his computer. The only break in the constant repetitions of clicks being when the man would pause to take a sip from his coffee.
After about an hour of furious typing, the man took his last sip from his cup before beginning to pack up his bag. He took another look outside the window before sighing. “Not just my imagination then.”
As he put his bag back over his shoulder, the waitress walked up to him a posed question already quite visible on her face. The man turned to give her a small smile, readjusting his sunglasses, the man asked, “Can I help you miss?”
The waitress seemed momentarily surprised at the man’s voice but shook her head before giving him a smile. “Yes. I was just wondering. Are you an author of some kind? You were typing up a storm earlier so I was just wondering.” Her eyes glinted with either admiration, or envy the man couldn’t really tell.
The man fought off a small laugh, a large grin on his face, “Well you could call me an author, but I’m more of an editor.” The man brushed a hand through his hair once more, his smile glowing brightly.
The waitress’s eyes glowed brighter, “Really! That’s amazing! What do you usually edit!?” The man brushed off some non-existent dirt on his shoulder.
“Fictional Fantasy Biographies.” The waitress paused for a second before giving the man a curious look. The man gave the woman a rather grim look in return before bursting out laughing. “Sorry, inside joke. I usually just edit whatever. I don’t really have a specific genre.” The man reached into his back pocket and placed a twin dollar bill on the table. “Anyways, I’m about to be late for a meeting.”
“Oh, sorry!“ The waitress apologized before stepping back to allow the man to room to exit, “Will whoever you’re meeting with be angry that you’re late?”
“I don’t think so, but they are a demons so I wouldn’t want to keep them waiting.” Another grin on his face the man began to head towards the exit. “Keep the change by the way.”
With that the man left the café took about five steps before he turned the corner into the alleyway next to the café. “Well then. I’m here for meeting! Sorry I didn’t call in beforehand; to be honest I wasn’t even aware you were here.” The smile that was on his face only moments ago was gone.
There was suddenly a deafening silence in the alleyway; all sound of the outside world was gone. All that existed in the universe for this man at this moment was this alleyway. The man took a step forward. “Come on! I know you’re here! Your aura’s been roaring ever since I got here!” Silence as once more his only reply to his call.
Suddenly the man spun on his heel and turned directly behind him, his hand going inside his jacket and then coming out with a large silver revolver. Behind him was nothing. Quite literally nothing, where the street was supposed to be there was nothing. The ground below him ended, the air itself ended. There was nothing.
The man unperturbed by this, in fact grinned, as he quickly spun once more on his heel and raised his revolver up directly above him. “There you are.” With a quick press of the trigger, huge bleu sparks blew out from the gun and upwards.
Now a normal gunshot is not quiet; in fact most would classify a gunshot to be rather loud. Yet, the sound that came from the large silver revolver that the man had just taken a shot with was about ten times too loud for a gun of that size. The noise seemed to bounce through the alleyway echoing wildly. Of course the thing, which had just fallen to the ground writhing in pain, didn’t quite care that the gunshot was too loud as it was currently experiencing the worst pain it has ever had. The entrance point around the shot, was smoking a strange blue smoke, and the flesh around it bubbled as if it was boiling.
“You like that? These are specially made silver twenty two caliber rimfire bullets, small enough so they don’t quite go through you but instead lodge themselves in you so that they do the most pain they can. Now why don’t you get stop screaming so that we can have a nice chat about why you’re here?” The man gave a cocky smile towards the thing was currently shrieking on the ground in front of him.
“RAHL YATAK!” An inhuman voice, that sounded like a chorus of five screamed back at him. With a clawed hand the thing gave a rather unkind hand gesture towards the man.
“Now, now, there’s no need to get insulting!” The man shouted in the most patronizing voice he could pull off. “You know too well that humans don’t understand supernal, but I see that sign language is universal!”
“RAHL YATAK!” The five voices echoed once more.
“Fine, if you want more motivation to speak so badly! Who am I to refuse your request!?” Taking careful aim the man raised his revolver once more towards the thing, only for the creature to suddenly leap up from the ground, the shot he had fired missing the beast as it soared upwards. The creature still unsteady crashed into the wall and let out a shriek. It was nearly five feet tall, and two feet wide, its large bat-like wings gave it an extra two feet in both height and width. Its skin was a bright red, and its swinging bladed tail nearly took the man’s arm as it swung it at him in rage. A demon, horns and all, shrieked in a mixture of pain and anger as it jumper back up only to suddenly crashed into the nothing that replaced the sky above the alleyway.
“Now, now, I’m smart enough that I set up a barrier, so you’re not leaving here anytime soon.” Aiming his gun at the monster’s head the man smirked. The demon’s tail suddenly whipped forward once more and smacked the gun out of the man’s hand.
“Well shit.” The demon gave the man another rude gesture before taking a step forward, its tail poised dangerously level with the man’s neck. “Double shit.”
The man leaped forwards and diagonally to where his gun was on the ground, at the same time the demon’s tail struck forward to where the man’s neck had just been. Ducking down into a roll, the man grabbed the gun and jumped placing a foot on the wall next to him. Pushing off with his foot he spun around to the face the demon, gun pointed forward. Throwing any hint of aim to the wind, the man shot twice in the general area of the demon. Both shots hit the ground and the demon quickly whipped around before rushing towards the man. The demon let out a wild scream and turned rapidly before body slamming the man.
“Ugh!” The breath was knocked out of the man, as he slammed into a dumpster, “Son of a bitc-“ the man’s curse was cut off as the demon’s tail suddenly came down like an axe onto his shoulder. It stopped before it could continue through the man’s body however as it was met with blue sparks. Clenching his teeth the man grunted and grabbed the tail so that the demon couldn’t just pull out it’s tail and leave a gaping hole where his shoulder once was. Reaching back into his coat the man quickly pulled out a small dagger and slashed at the tail and managed to cut the bladed end clean off.
The demon leaped back, shrieking and suddenly looked up. “Shit, the barrie-“ the demon leaped up and soared into the sky above the alleyway that had reappeared.
It paused however right at edge of the building’s roof and flew right above the man. Looking back down at him it roared, “RAHL YATAK! MAK LARZ SHA!” With those final words the beast began to fly off, however the man ever keen to not let prey escape raised his revolver once more and shot blindly at the demon. Much to his delight the shot hit and demons let out another roar of pain, much to his dislike however it wasn’t enough to stop the demon as it continued its flight away from the man. The demons’ roars grew quieter, luckily though it seemed that the people of the town were either brainless or clueless, as they didn’t seem to notice the demon as it flew over their heads.
“Triple shit.” The man calmly said, as he leaned against the alley wall and slid down to the floor. Staring at where the demon had just been, he sighed before glancing at the large bladed tail end in his shoulder. Sighing once more, he placed his dagger and his pistol back in their pockets under his jacket. Muttering to himself he grabbed the tail with both hands. Blue sparks flashed from his wound and he grimaced.
“This shouldn’t hurt as bad as you think it would, just do this calmly and cleanly and you’ll be fine.” Taking a deep breath he pushed upward and the tail slipped out of his shoulder with a sickening sloshing noise. The blue sparks flashed stronger and blood instead of gushing out of the wound trickled out at a slow pace. Wincing, he quickly placed the tail next to him on the floor, and reached into his bag. Pulling out a bandage roll, he began to wrap his shoulder.
“The things I do for work…” As the man began to finish his bandaging his cell phone began to ring, the ringtone for the particular person calling him being his own face repeating the word “DANGER!”.
“Quadruple shit.” The man reached into his pocket and took out his phone to look at his phone warily. The man glanced to the right, and then to the left before calming rejecting the call and placing it back into his pocket. The phone began to ring the second he had pocketed it. The man let out a sigh before he quickly rejected the call once more before turning off his phone. He stood up slightly dazed before bending down to pick up the tail.
With a swift flick of the wrist the nothingness that was the end of the alleyway vanished and the noise of the outside world once more filled the alleyway. The man’s universe and the world’s universe merged back together. The man peeked his head out of the alleyway before causally strolling out onto the street. “Let’s hope no one too curious saw that little scramble eh?”