Monday, September 29, 2014

I hate hospitals

I always have.

I don't suppose I had any particular reason for it, at least at the beginning. Childhood fears, I suppose. Later it did start to make more sense, when going to the hospital would essentially mean going to jail.

That, I had a very good reason to dislike.

But, when Em was injured, I knew I had to take her there. I had avoided the hospital once before, and it was the worst decision I have ever made. So, to the hospital we went. Which meant that I got to stand around an ugly lobby being asked about insurance cards and the reason for the gunshot while my granddaughter's life wavered.

I did not handle it well.

I... may have threatened a doctor. If you could call him a doctor. I saw the stick and the serpent on his robes and naturally prevented him from taking care of my daughter by pinning him against the wall.

The guy was rather sarcastic for someone I was very close to killing.

I know, that would have been an overreaction. But I don't like doctors. Oathbreakers even less. But I didn't kill him! The sassy bastard is alive and well.

He is how I got out of there with Em. Given some circumstances I would appreciate not going into, I had come into possession of one favor from the Oathbreakers. I used it in order to leave without incident.

This is the second time I have taken someone to a hospital and left with them in a wheelchair.

History needs to stop repeating.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

My side of the story

I wasn't sure I was going to write this at all. I was kidnapped, you all know it, I don't really want to talk about it. I haven't even talked to Grandpa about it, really. I haven't really talked at all since Grandpa rescued me, except to answer the medically relevant questions of the doctors. And to quietly request that I be tested for any and all blood borne diseases. You can't be too careful in the aftermath of all of this.
For a while after the kidnapping, things were alright. She'd come in and threaten and act crazy at me, then she'd leave and Mr. Flint would clean up and talk to me for a while. Frustrating, yes, but not the horror I was expecting. That last week, though... it was bad. I think maybe she was getting impatient and the boredom made things worse? I'm not sure, I'm not an expert in criminal psychology. In any event, she started ranting and raging and hitting a lot more than before. Then she took a bite out of my cheek. I'll probably have a scar forever, it's a nasty wound.
After that... She made me lick up some of her blood (Which is where the concern about disease came from). She made me 'help' her tear one of her own people apart, then made me eat his heart. She came very, disturbingly close, to taking off a few fingers to 'sweeten her stew pot'. She wouldn't leave me alone. Every time I thought it couldn't get worse, it did. Until Grandpa showed up. You've already gotten the details of the rescue, I won't bore you with them again. I was a bit distracted for most of it, because Andre shot me pretty early on.
Getting shot is way worse than getting stabbed. Or maybe it's just that he hit my spine. The pain wasn't so bad, I've dealt with worse. But the weight of it, the entire lower half of my body immediately turning into so much dead weight. One minute I was running, the next moment I'll never run again. The pain from the shot wasn't as bad as I would have expected. The bone fragments that had just recently been my lower spine, though... Those hurt worse. Especially when Maggot had to move me out of harm's way. It's strong, and managed it without much trouble, but every tiny move hurt so badly I half hoped it would kill me.
For the first time in my life, I couldn't think. I couldn't focus, I couldn't speak except to scream in pain and fear. Some distant part of my brain noticed that my legs were numb and knew that was bad, but I didn't know why. I couldn't register what was wrong. Just that everything was, my whole body felt focused on the bursts of pain in my abdomen. I tried to curl up, but only my torso complied, my legs stubbornly refusing to bend up to protect my chest. It was only when I noticed that that my brain started back up. Legs not moving was bad. The shock that was creeping up was even worse. Grandpa was busy, I didn't know how long he would be and I couldn't risk the shock killing me before he could get me to a hospital.
 Not that there was much I could really do to prevent shock, but I was hoping if I could keep my brain moving, keep the thoughts coming, that I could stave it off. I don't know if it worked, but I didn't die so I'm counting it a victory. I don't really remember the ambulance ride or most of my hospital stay after that. They saved my life but couldn't save my legs. I counted myself mostly lucky to not lose Grandpa in the bargain. I'm still not sure why the hospital didn't ask more questions about an eight year old getting shot.
It's only once I got out of there that the reality of the situation sank in. Half of my body no longer provides any useful function. My legs might as well have been cut off. They're just useless hunks of meat now. Weighing me down, getting in the way instead of helping me move. Just meat. Like Jessica thought of me. She always called me veal, said I'd make an excellent stew.
Do you know what makes veal? It's not just young cows, though that is a big part of it. Veal comes from calves who are kept in the dark and coddled all their short lives. Often, veal cows weren't even allowed to move, but were kept bound or suspended or merely locked in small pens, unable to do much other than eat sweet feed until they died. They were are kept perfect, fat, and tender, defenseless and sweet. That's what makes the meat such a delicacy.
I am not veal. I have been all over. I have stretched my mental and physical muscles. I have eaten awful things, starved a few times, and running keeps me lean and limber. Most of all, I am not defenseless. Grandpa, Ben, Mama, and a few others have all made sure I know how to fight back.
But in a world of fighters, of fast, strong, violent people like Jessica and Grandpa and my Mama, Sanna and Annalee and all the proxies floating around, I might as well be. Grandpa wanted to protect me, to let me grow up, to try to let me be a 'normal kid'. Whatever that means. I made a fuss and fought him on random bits, but overall I let him. I had learned to fight, but I hid behind him instead. Because I'm just a kid, and I'm not as good and I'm not as strong. I couldn't stand up to someone like them and I knew it, but instead of trying I hid and I read and I tried to make myself out to be some big damn grownup while hiding under the metaphorical covers.
I'm not going to do that anymore. Grandpa's probably not going to like it. He'll probably try to insist I  go back to what I was doing. But this whole ordeal has shown me that no matter how much I want to, no matter how much I want to, I cannot depend on anyone else to protect me. It's not that Grandpa can't, because he can. It's not that I don't want him to, because I do. But no one can be there every minute of every day, not even David Banks. And I don't want him to have to be. I'm going to start spending as much time working on my shooting as learning new languages or whatever. Just because I can't walk doesn't mean I can't fight-I don't need to stand up to shoot well and I was always a better shot than anything else anyway.
I've used my gun to defend myself before. I've even learned to kill with it if I have to. It's time to stop pretending I have the luxury of expecting anyone else to protect me.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

I lost

Though not in the way I expected.

As unwilling as I was to go to an unknown location psychically sent to me in a dream by my literally monstrous ex boss, it was the only lead I had on Em. And stubborn as I am, I was not going to let my granddaughter suffer merely because I did not wish to do what He told me anymore. So I went where I was pointed.

I scouted the whole place out first, of course. Contrary to what most people believe, I am not an idiot. It was a warehouse. Which is pretty much the most typical thing ever, but Jess uses her imagination for other things.

Like, parties apparently.

She threw one. An actual, more or less for normal people, no cannibalism party. They weren't too great about filtering the guests, so I got inside pretty easy. The DJ played a lot of Kesha. So I went up to him and after some brief condolences asked him to play one more.

At the beginning of the first chorus, the wall exploded.

Another 'Gift' from the slender man was that Ryan has been remarkably lucid for the last few days. Him and Maggot proved a pretty decent distraction as I managed to get Em (not hard to find, Jessica's flair for the dramatic literally put her in plain sight) and untie her so she could run.

And then, it was just me and Jessica.

She ran, and I followed. Until we were somewhere private.

I had decided not to kill her.

Maybe that wasn't really a good idea, but there is a part of me that will always care for her. So I had come up with an alternative. I knew of a good psychiatric facility that wouldn't attract too much attention. Help her instead of worry about turning her into the police. And I showed the paperwork to Jess.

I guess I thought I could scare her. That if she saw I was still strong, just on a different path, she would leave all of us alone.

She didn't believe me.

And that's when I heard Em scream.

I had been too busy with Jess. Too busy trying to save both her and myself to worry about Em.

As always, a moment too late.

I ran back, to find Maggot taking care of Em. Jessica's bodyguard was on the ground, incapacitated with a gun in his hands.

I knew exactly what had happened.

And.... I didn't take it well.

I told Maggot to get Em to safety and Ryan to call the ambulance. So none of them saw it.

But I lost. right there. I let my monster out and I killed Andre.

I don't know how I feel right now. On one hand, I now have complete and totally proof that part of me will always be a psychopath.

On the other... I haven't strayed from my path either.

I don't know. Maybe David Banks can find a way to do some good anyway.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

I had a dream last night

and not an average dream.

I don't know where I was. I'm not sure I really paid attention as to where I was. It didn't matter. Except for the tree. The tree was large and sprawling, its branches reaching as far as I could see.

And in the tree was Lily.

I don't talk about Lily often. I don't suppose many of you even knew I had a daughter. I did. She died. That is as far as I want to go into it for the moment.

She was in her favorite dress, a small pink thing that I had blindly picked out but thankfully worked for her. A plastic teacup in her hands, drinking as if there was actually something in it.

"It's happening again." she said.

"It's not. I'm going to get Em back. Nothing's going to happen to her."

She laughed. But it didn't sound like her. Didn't even sound human.

"How long were you with me Banks?"

and that was when I realized I wasn't talking to Lily.

"Twenty Years."

"A long Moment. I was beginning to learn your name. But you. You have learned the only thing about me a human can know."

"That I don't know anything?"

There was no answer, which was an answer itself.

"You lost my child."

"She isn't yours to have."

"You are all mine to have. When I want them. But for now, I want her with you."

And the tree began to move. The branches flexed and bobbed until they became massive claws. One of them picked Lily up, and she giggled, gently holding onto the thumb as she stood on the palm.  It closed in on her, and as the tree balled into a fist I saw my own face instead of Lily's stare back at me.

I woke up, knowing where they were.