Heathens

Apollo and Dion, a dysfunctional rag-tag pair of demon hunters have been sent to investigate the city of Havenbrook and its inhabitants.

The mission is simple: to find the cultists responsible for a recent string of murders and to bring them to justice. Even if it takes killing dozens of demons on the way there.

But things are never that simple when you deal with the dark arts. Cultists, demon pacts, sacrificial murders all stand in the demon hunters' way as they search for the truth. A truth that will force them to question their own identities, a truth about the absolute evil lurking beyond heaven and earth. The question is, if they find the truth, will they be strong enough to handle it?

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21. 2:17 AM

The walls of rusted metal expanded outward into the small tunnels. He could feel the shit and piss up his leg and his feet that tried desperately to stay stable as he swam through the trash and murk. His feet felt like sponge. The ceilings were dripping with gunk and filth and the smell was oppressive. He held his breath. Rancid, putrid, it was like the rotten sweet smell of death was all around him and it made the small tunnel feel larger than it was. His shoulders could just fit. 

It was in this dripping darkness that he had stopped thinking. He was more so driven by a rapid beating heart and the pulsing in his fingertips that made his guns feel lighter than they were. He was close. The string on his arm showed it. He came to a crossroad, he looked at all six directions and the small light they showed from the curb gutters. He could hear clacking, cars hums, the deep moans of the city night. They came like small whispers through the holes and he made sure to steer clear of the light. He lifted his arm and chose the third tunnel, it seemed arbitrary though.

Is this it?

A bag floated past him, a rusted soda can cracked underneath his feet. He turned! 

Nothing. Just cardboard, spilling from a metal grate and fluttering.

He looked down and began to see the murky green. His eyes fell into the trance of his image and his muscles relaxed as his shoulders fell. It was almost enough to get him killed. Almost, had his legs obeyed him, had his heart stopped racing, had he totally relaxed he would have died. But every organ in his body knew. His lungs that stopped all of a sudden knew. For the feeling of air behind his head had broken, like a whisper spoken and draped around his neck. You’ll die if you stand still, ya know. He rolled forward. The blade went past him and up the wall. It scraped along and broke pipes that spilled water across his face and made him blurred. 

The water fell on his head and it felt cool. There was steam coming off him, he held the back of his head and watched the direction of which he was attacked.

The darkness devoured the monster. All he could tell was the snarl, the scratching walk like a dragging executioners chair. 

He cocked his gun. The creature ran. Under him. It aimed to trip him. It would have, had he not jumped. But in the air he felt wrong, the tongue shot out. He caught the broken metal pipe and lifted his legs from being amputated. He could not tell sweat from water or blood, only knew he had no time to breathe and held the air in his lungs with that tight face as he touched the ground. He shot, a bullet into the narrow space like a canon through a slide. It scaled the walls and ducked. Black hairs shaved off and fell. He could see its shape then. He could count seven legs, would be eight had he not blown one off earlier. It bled and dripped on the water but did not seem bothered by the septic smell. It was too focused to. Both of them were, as the light segmented them into slide shows of anger and rage, a new face, a new growl with each passing shadow of the bars. Dion was counting space, though he winced for somewhere in the tussle his thigh must have been ripped open and it bled now, faster than it healed. His eyes blinked and the creature was gone.

He shot. His wrist snapped. He shot. The tunnel was filled with the noise of his frustration, the ricochet of blue bullets, the smoke that rose up and his muted scream that had died underneath the buzz of his deaf ears. The cloud of smoke rose. It was enough to push away the smell. But not the demon and from the curtains of white, he saw the jaws of death.

He groaned and felt the teeth dig into his shoulders. Rows of teeth spun and eviscerated his flesh, he could feel each time the beast moved. It held this position. It tightened, he could feel its muscles tighten.

And Dion began to laugh. That’s all that went down the holes and the pipes, the laughter and the drop of his pistol into the murk. He was beginning to enjoy the pain, it felt like the embrace of a lover and so he hugged. He tightened his arms around the creature, squeezed it through until he could feel something pop and with a great push, slammed himself against the metal walls. He could feel their shape lump the concrete and metal. He could feel the dirt moving as he slammed himself and the beast against the wall. Laughing. Holding, caressing almost as he slammed away. After a while the chimera let go, its mouth was tired. Dion felt its breath yield. It was wheezing. He grabbed it by two of its legs, at random, and launched it one final time.

It drooled. It fell from the walls and drooled black blood. Dion felt his shoulder, he didn’t realize how much it was ruined until he began to slack from one side. When he couldn’t move his arm anymore he spat, he’d use his feet then. 

Dion reached for it. The tongue shot out in retaliation. It went through the palm of his hand, cut his cheek and dug itself into the ceiling above. 

“You’re tenacious. I respect that. But you’re only tenacious in the way an animal is, with the fear of death guiding you. I have more than that, more to fight for, more to die for.” He heckled. The mouth closed. He made sure of it, as he kicked it shut. The tongue was lopped off, it fell. It looked like a noose as Dion removed it from his arm and let it hang from the ceiling. 

He grabbed his pistol and thought to shoot it. But he turned it, last second, and pointed the butt of his gun on the monster. He could not help himself, it was what made his stomach flutter. It was what made him happy as he brought it down over and over, a mechanical swing that lifted the blood to his face. By the fifth bludgeon, the beast had stopped moving. By the tenth, Dion had stopped. He was ripping it apart, butchering it, looking at what to eat. 

He did not remember what happened much, only remembered as to why he left. There was a voice above, a curious group of eyes, obviously drunk with how they rocked standing. Dion did not remember what they looked like, he was too drunk by food too. He only remembered their hushed breaths, only remembered their eyes as they looked down to the sewer to the pair of ruby’s they had spotted. They stared down and Dion stared up, his mask half lifted, his mouth chewing on something that no longer resembled meat. 

One of them snapped their heels and it fell on Dion like a heavy raindrop.  

He looked around almost as if he had forgotten where he was. He looked in his pocket, the heart had long since been stripped. So why am I here?

He sighed, rubbed his head, slapped himself a bit. His legs felt heavy, his neck felt weak and he smelled like shit.

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