The Hollow and The Saint

"The world we live in is no different from Hell; there are those who are tortured by the fire, there are demons who carry out orders, and then, of course, there is the devil himself. Well, I plan on turning hell into heaven."

Wounded, heartbroken with a hollow void filling down his soul, Logan Hayz is lying down on the ground, in front of him the corpse of his son, with a bullet stuck in his skull painting such beauty on his face. A bullet fired from the same Glock pistol Logan is holding in his right hand. Blood covering his left mechanical arm giving it an exquisite look with the rust of steel. Water drops touching down his flabby skin, in one eye he can see the past along with all the hardships and sufferings he had to endure to achieve his ultimate dream of creating the perfect world. In the other, he saw the reason he pursued that dream, Elizabeth Rose, his long-lost beloved.


Cover by INFINITE_EXHO

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22. Beyond Human


 

   

In my eyes, I see the world on fire. Since we were kids, they told us to always search for the good, to always believe in kindness, to seek out the light. However, does it really exist? Or is it just another illusion made to mislead us from the ugly truth? Do you want to know what I think? We should look for the dark side in each one of us. That’s when you finally realize your true self.

What the fuck is happening?! 

These words were rumbling inside my head. My thoughts were in disarray as I was unable to assess the situation in front of me. I was losing focus. As I got closer to Lilith, I could see her pupils moving around, but her body was completely immobile. Fear was oozing out of her eyes.

“What is going-” I felt a sting at my neck.

I turned around. It was Delilah, holding a needle in her right hand to my neck trying to drug me. Quickly I pushed her away, getting the needle out of my system. I was starting to feel numb and dizzy. I went down on my knees. She couldn’t get the right dose in my bloodstream because otherwise, I would have passed out in a matter of seconds.

Delilah stood right next to Franco. He laid his right hand on her back while smiling to each other. That sinister look in their eyes, all this bloodlust, was like these two were different beings from another world.

“You think we didn’t know you were Illuminati dogs?” Said Franco, his hands wrapped around Delilah’s waist.

They knew who we are, but how!?

"You must be wondering how we knew right? Do you think I should tell him, honey?" Franco asked his wife, leaning to her ear.

"I must admit he entertained me well while you were gone. Tell him and we can call it even I guess," Delilah replied.

Wait! Don't tell me...

"Do you remember that serial number carved under your armpits? Yes my boy, your sweetheart over here made it all obvious when she raised her hands while fixing her hair after the dance. That's when I saw it. Now I don't know who ordered you to go after me but, it seems I will be forced to make you spit it out. Come on honey, bring me the suitcase," said Franco, caressing Lilith face as she helplessly starred at him her eyes wide open.

How could they know this information? Who are they?

Delilah went and grabbed a suitcase from under the bed. She laid it on the ground and opened it up. Inside, I could see a wrench, a knife, a chainsaw, and all kinds of crazy tools.

“Thomas, or whatever your real name is, do you know what the best feeling in the world is? Contemplating the eyes of a dying man, with enough focus you can witness the most beautiful picture a human can offer, that blink, that amazing spark just before leaving his eyes, those last moments are priceless. But you, you are special. That sparkle you showed while dancing was, stupendous! I was immediately captivated, and I want to see that spark again!” Said Franco while showing an exceptional enthusiasm as his hands danced between the cleaver and a butcher’s knife.

This, all of this, they are used to it. They must have done it more than once. No, that’s what they do. They drag people into their room, preferably couples. If I had to guess, they are the picky kind of folks, choosing only pairs who stand out from others. But why their files didn’t mention any of this?!

Franco continued, “Let me get you up on a little secret. You must be wondering how I was able to get this far up the ladder up, right? I bet that wasn’t mentioned inside that little report of yours,” he picked a screwdriver and kept starring at it end, then putted down.

“When I was about your age, I was quite the looker. A few sugary words with a beautiful smile while being a good listener, voila! You can capture any woman’s heart.”

“Well, at least it worked on me,” Delilah smiled, showing off an endless void behind it.

“Trinity Hotel where I used to work was owned by Melanie Striges. She was old, like really old at the age of seventy two, the wrinkles were like steep hills on her face. Melanie took a liking to me, just after I laid down my webs around her of course, however, it was me who was caught in hers. I still remember the night of the 23th of August like the back of my hand. It was hot, sweat was pouring down of every pour of my body. Melanie invited me to her bedroom of her villa. She was a widow, so we were alone. I thought that it would be a quickie with an old woman and maybe I would get a blue Ford or a small house if I was lucky. Again, I was wrong. Melanie had other plans in mind. She drugged my glass of wine with sleeping serum, and she began toying with me. Let me tell you, it wasn’t pleasant. Despite being drugged, I could feel every nerve in my body hot as a steel rod. I remember blurry glimpses of her on top of me, holding an electric tongs right to my chest. A sinister smile on her face, like an old witch in a wicked fairytale. Tell the truth, I thought I was a goner. The next thing I remember after I woke up was a beautiful girl, holding a bloody knife in her hand. Carving small hearts on Melanie’s face, she lying dead on bed. That girl looked at me with her bewitching eyes after noticing I regained consciousness and said – Want to join me? And that’s how I met my angel, Delilah Striges,” Franco stood up and passionately kissed his wife on the lips, as I tried helplessly to stand up with no luck.  

What kind of psychopaths were they? They were the kind that ascended beyond human. The Doctor once told me that I had to go beyond human in order to succeed, but this was too much, more like beyond sick.

I have to do something, or else I would end up at the bottom of the ocean or buried underground.

I noticed Delilah sneaking up behind me, trying to stick the needle in my neck, again. Despite feeling a bit stupefied, my body was somewhat responding, but sluggish. The moment she was going for my neck, I grabbed her hand and struck the needle in her instead. She dropped down on the floor, unconscious.

I was trying to stand up, but my legs felt so heavy. I could hear Franco moving slowly towards me, getting closer and closer. Holding a hammer in his right hand, his eyes were dancing with excitement.

"So, there is still life in you after all, eh? It seems I'll be having all the fun while Delilah is asleep."

He repeatedly hit me with the hammer. I could hear the sound of each blow echoing inside my brain. I tried to cover my face using my hands, still he managed to land a hit and my mouth was bleeding all over. He then stood right above me.

“Tell me who sent you!” Yelling in my ear.

I didn’t respond, so he returned to the suitcase and grabbed a whip, a really thick one. I was staggering on the floor, trying to figure my way out. Right on my back, I was being whipped over and over. First, I was feeling a lot of pain, but the more he hit me, the more that feeling disappeared and I lost count of how many times he whipped me.

“I can do this all day, just give me a fucking name!” Franco’s hit weren’t slowing down, nor getting weaker.

Again, I didn’t respond because I knew that if I told him now, he would kill me right away. He went and grabbed a plier this time.

“Okay kiddo, open your mouth for the dentist!” He said, holding my jaw with his left hand.

He forced my mouth open and used the pliers to get ahold of my middle tooth. Using all his strength, he pulled it out. The pain was horrible, as if my soul was the one being ripped out.

“Hah, this is getting tiring. But you know, the fun is only getting started! Again, tell me who sent you?!” He yelled in my ears again.

“I… I’ll tell you,” I replied, while barely opening my mouth.

The moment his face got closer, I used a head-butt, and his body recoiled backward. It bought me some time to stand up. Maybe all that pain woke up my sleepy nerves and negated the drug effect.

"You little scoundrel!" He was regaining balance.

He charged at me, trying to strangle me with his whip, but quickly I grabbed the knife strapped in my right ankle and stabbed him in his right eye.

"Argh!" he screamed from the pain. I opened his mouth and squeezed my knife inside. 

“Open up that safe or I will cut off your tongue and feed it to the hounds!” I pushed knife further.

He complied, under shock, that injury must’ve had made him lose his senses. Once he opened safe, I threw Franco’s to the ground and picked up the file from it.

"Argh! Guards! Help!" He was on the floor, screaming, trying to call for help.

I grabbed the whip, wrapped it around his neck and strangled him with all my might while using my right leg on his back to get a better grip. He was struggling, but he wasn’t strong enough to break through my grip. Slowly, he was starting to let go, until his hands finally let off. Funny enough, in the end, he got to see his own spark blinking away. 

I took a deep breath, and rushed to Lilith side trying to wake her up. She was regaining consciousness, I could see her hand barely moving.

“Hey, we need to go, come on!” I slapped her on the face, trying to wake her up.

The moment she look at me, her expression changed. She pushed me over off her side.

"What are you?!..." I yelled, shocked from her weird behavior when I finally realized what was going on, she saved me.

Delilah was on top of Lilith. With a knife in her hands, she stabbed Lilith right in the gut. I was so enraged, I couldn't see anything in front of me anymore. I grabbed Delilah by the hair and dragged her down the floor. Using her husband's hammer, I began hitting her on the head, over and over until the hammer was stuck inside.

When I finally regained my senses, I found myself dripping with blood, Delilah’s blood. Red that was all I could see. This scene reminded me of how Elizabeth described her mother bashing her father’s head. It was beyond fucked up, she was lucky not to be able to witness that awful scene with her own eyes. My chest was pounding hard, breathing fast and shaking all over.

Then I heard Lilith moaning from the pain. She was bleeding fast, so quickly I tried to close the wound with a blanket.

“Mr. Dorello, are you alright?” said one the guards while knocking on the door.

With Lilith injured and partially paralyzed, it was hard for me to fight my way out of the mansion. Not to mention, I was not feeling so well myself. Still, we had to get out of here fast. And once again, time wasn't on our side.

 

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