|The Crimson Rose
Author: ChaoticSymphonyofDarkness PM
Erik Destler is the most powerful lawyer in NY who hides constantly from a very dark and painful past. Working hard and staying recluse, many of his staff fear him. Yet, his world is changed when a young intern enters his office. On temp hiatus for nowRated: Fiction T - English - Romance/Tragedy - Erik - Chapters: 22 - Words: 192,008 - Reviews: 66 - Favs: 16 - Follows: 21 - Updated: 01-24-11 - Published: 10-22-10 - id: 6418849
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
No Good Deed Goes
Here's the next chapter. Thank you all everyone for the wonderful reviews and staying with this story. I know that the posting for the next chapters have been taking forever, but please bare with me. Hope you all enjoyed the last chapter and this one and chapter 23 will be up soon. Thanks again.
The Phantom of the Opera does not belong to me, just another avid phan. This story is based off of the 2004 smash movie and the wonderful musical that has been seen around the world.
Standing alone in an abandoned building set to be demolished within a week stands Roland, half trembling within the half cascade of shadows dripping down from the entrance. Nervously, Roland tucks the lapel of his fine buckskin jacket up tighter around his neck before taking a few cautious steps to the center of the building where a circle of sunlight glistens off of the dust filled floor. Feeling something touch his boots, Roland's light blue eyes dart downward to see a small gray mouse sit amused on the top of his boot. Jumping back in fear, Roland emits a low cry of panic as the gray mouse scampers off his boot to its hidden home in the hole riddled walls.
"Filthy things" sneers Roland.
"Something you both have in common" laughs a gruff voice.
"What the…!" gasps Roland.
"You alone?" echoes the deep voice.
"Where are you?"growls Roland impatiently.
Not appreciating the man's antics or sense of humor, Roland angrily spins beneath the glowering rays of the sun for the sight of the person belonging to the icy chilled voice still echoing within the empty space of the abandoned structure.
"Just answer the goddamn question" snarls the voice again.
"Yes" grumbles Roland.
"Good" chuckles the voice.
"Where…where are you?" demands Roland.
"Look behind you"
Twisting around, Roland lets out a gasping cry of surprise from the sight of a tall body builder form of a man standing a few feet at the door that he had just walked through. His neatly shaved head reflects the half destroyed lights swinging above their heads as his icy blue eyes glare menacingly back at him. A white wife beater shirt is partially visible beneath a long leather trench coat that drops down to his feet, half covering the faded torn and blood stained blue jeans.
"Butch" smiles Roland, upon recognizing the hulking threat of a man.
"Roland…what brings you back here?" smiles Butch.
"I have a job for you and your men" smiles Roland devilishly.
"Oh…and what may that be?" asks Butch, with a quizzical glare.
"A man is standing in my way...preventing me from acquiring what is rightfully mine" sniffs Roland.
"Oh…and that may be what exactly?" asks Butch, truly curious to what his boss is speaking of.
"Oh…congratulations boss…didn't know you had it in you" half smiles Butch as he sarcastically claps his hands in Roland's face.
"Enough…I get the point" snarls Roland, not liking being made fun of.
"So you finally decided to marry the bitch…amazing" chuckles Butch as he takes a step back from the enraged man.
Closing his eyes, Butch slowly folds his tree trunk size arms across his steal chest as he leans his massive body against a half crumbling pillar. Opening his eyes, a low maniacal laugh rises up his thick throat from the very amusing glare that Roland had been throwing back at him.
"Yes…but as I said…a certain man is standing in my way" growls Roland.
"How did she get away from you to begin with?" asks Butch as he brings his thick fingers up to massage his grisly chin.
"Unbelievably…the monster of a man some how found out what exactly went on behind the scenes…he came bursting into our condo…I fought him of course" sniffs Roland, proud of the fact that he had succeeded in landing a few good punches to the masked intruders face, "but somehow the bastard had gotten the upper hand…he managed to scoop Kiara up in his arms before I could stop him…but I got him good" smiles Roland.
"How's that…you threw your shoe at him?" chuckles Butch, pointing a thick finger down to his overly priced loafers.
"No you imbecile…I whipped out my gun and shot him in the shoulder…and just today…got him again" replies Roland proudly.
"Why do you need my help than if you already shot the guy?" asks Butch, a little annoyed that Roland would have called upon him for no other reason than to just brag.
"I need you to rough him up a little bit" smiles Roland.
"But…you shot him" glares Butch, not quite comprehending the need for his services.
"He survived!" roars Roland.
"How do you know?" asks Butch, throwing Roland a threatening glare.
"I saw the man still breathing before I left!" thunders Roland.
"Gotcha…so what do you need me to do…put him six feet under?" asks Butch.
Happily, Butch punches his thick fist into the open palm of his other hand at the growing excitement of watching a man's life slip through his fingers. Sighing, the hulk of a man thinks back to the last time he and his men had been assigned such a pleasurable duty, but sadly, it had been three years since Roland or anyone else had come searching for there services, which had left the group of killers very bored and anxious.
"No…not yet…I want you to get the man alone…away from prying eyes…rough him up…beat him…but don't kill him" warns Roland.
"Awe…your no fun" sniffs Butch.
"Because I still need him alive!" roars Roland.
"For him to identify you as the person behind this…or me?" growls Butch.
"No…he is the only one who knows where Kiara is being hidden…I need you to beat him up enough for him to reveal where he's hiding her…than…when he tells you…you can beat him to death" smiles Roland.
"Oh…I like that part" smiles Butch.
"Here's where the man works and what he looks like" replies Roland before handing the man a piece of paper and a picture, "now head over their immediately…I believe that everyone will be leaving for their lunch break in a few minutes…if you don't see him leave…than go up to the office"
"What if there's people still inside?" asks Butch, his eyes never leaving the picture of the man that Roland has put a hit on.
"There won't be…everyone leaves the office" sneers Roland.
"Wouldn't he?" replies Butch, scratching his bald head.
"Kiara once told me that on rare occasions does the man leave his office during the lunch break…so if he hasn't left with the others…he'll be alone" sneers Roland.
"Both my men and I demand our usual allowance for this…plus extra" smiles Butch.
"Extra!" roars Roland incredulously.
"Yeah…the hit your giving us is going to cost you extra considering its also to locate your sweet heart…plus…I know this man…he's a high class and very revered lawyer here in New York…that also makes the cost more" replies Butch as he slaps the paper with the address and picture still held tight within his thick fingers.
"Very well…when the job is complete…I shall pay you all the usual…plus an extra 15%"
"90%" smiles Butch smugly.
"What!" roars Roland.
"High class lawyer...highly respected" smiles Butch.
"Fine…your usual pay plus 90% extra" growls Roland.
"Pleasure doing business with yous again" chuckles Butch.
Extending his thick hand out, Roland gives the man a bewildered look before placing his much smaller hand in his. Giving a hard shake, Butch holds tight to Roland's hand, preventing him from pulling it back. Leaning his face closer to the small, quivering fop standing before him, Butch gives Roland an evil glare before continuing.
"No backing down from our deal…I'll do my part" threatens Butch.
"And I'll do mine" sneers Roland.
Curiosities peaked by the sudden presence of Isis, and Kiara's odd behavior with sending Erik back into his office before the woman returned had signaled too many of the staff that something strange was happening. Straining to hear; the staff one by one piles ontop of each other as they press there ears eagerly against the doors with the hope of picking up the voices from the other side. Shaking there heads, Kiara, Miranda, Antoinette, and Nicholas stare amused at the almost human pyramid form that the staff had taken. Shrugging there shoulders, the four closes to Erik and the ones most anxious to hear the details take their stances on either side of the group. Hearing Isis's words float within the silent breeze sends surprised gasping stares to appear on everyone's faces from the shocking revelation that the woman had just announced to the unseen group.
"His...his sister!" gasps Miranda.
"You didn't know?" asks Kiara confused.
"I had a theory…though really had nothing to back it up" replies Miranda softly before turning her softened gaze back to her mother's.
"We never told Miranda" adds Antoinette sadly.
"Why?" breathes Kiara.
"It was something…we felt that Miranda didn't need to have knowledge of…yet" whispers Nicholas.
Half understanding the reasons behind Antoinette's and Nicholas's justification of keeping that piece of information from Miranda, Kiara gives the three a gentle awkward smile before returning her ear back to the door.
"Erik" whispers Kiara.
Completely thrown by her words, Erik painfully stumbles back away from Isis's angelic form glowing eerily within the golden rays of his lamp. Wincing beneath the throbbing pain pulsing beneath his chest, Erik weakly clutches the spot where his frozen heart still fights to beat against the encapsulating ice.
"Yes Erik…I've been searching for you…for so long" smiles Isis.
"My…my sister?" breathes Erik.
Feeling her heart lurch at the bewildering shocked look plastered on Erik's pale face, Isis chokingly swallows against a rising sob forming within her tight throat from the icy chill swirling within the eerily silent room. Knowing she cannot back down now, Isis gathers her courage before slowly taking the necessary steps needed to stand before the trembling man.
"It's alright my brother…I wont hurt you" soothes Isis.
Softly, the angelical sibling he had thought was buried within the ashes of the past raises a silken hand up to cup his pale, quivering cheek. But the reflexive flinch from the past startles Isis, stopping her in place. Understanding the cause of the movement, Isis gently gives the brother she had long ago thought was lost, a comforting smile before raising her slender hand back up to softly cup his cheek within the silken folds of her hand.
"Isis" moans Erik painfully.
Pulled within the silken warmth from Isis's gentle touch; Erik's mind once fighting against her comforting words, slowly caves beneath the soft truths radiating from the same eyes that had belonged to the mother he had yearned for love. Giving in, Erik slowly brings his hand up to cup Isis's. Entwining his fingers around hers, Erik slowly brings his eyes back up to stare painfully into her tear filled emerald blues.
"Yes…my brother" soothes Isis.
Closing his eyes, Erik's mind falls back into the crashing folds of his past, now shattering his mind, and weakening his resolve. Slowly, the phantom image of a young girl a couple years younger than him appears. Her softened wavy raven hair folds around her angelic face; as the enigmatic light blue of her eyes shimmers from the heavenly splash of sparkling green from the glittering glow from the slabs of sunlight pouring into the freezing attic. The golden rays shine down upon her small body, causing the canary yellow of her dress to glow beneath the effervescent light, further heightening her luminescent figure into the realm of heaven's light.
"Erik…my brother" echoes the girl's voice.
Kneeling before the beaten boy, the angelical girl's eyes soften from crystalline tears billowing within her effervescent orbs.
"Who…who are you?" echoes the weak voice of a young boy bound by chains of steel and nails.
"I'm your sister…Isis Kianna Destler" smiles the girl.
"Get out of here…get out of here now…before he finds you" pleads the boy.
Fearful that his sister's life will now be in danger from this brave endeavor, the young boy pulls desperately against the chains bounding him to the wall as his haunting emerald blue eyes stare petrified back at the girl.
"I'm not going anywhere" snaps the girl.
"But…he'll hurt you" cries the boy as he falls back against the wall.
"I'm not afraid…all I care about…all I want…is to make sure that you're alright" soothes the girl.
Unknowingly, the young boy's fears cave away by the entrancing glow of the young girl's heavenly gifted eyes. Loosing all focus of the world around him, the boy unconsciously ignores Isis's small hand reaching up to caress his beaten cheek.
"Erik?" echoes a soft voice.
'That voice…the same that I had heard in my dreams…' echoes Erik's voice in his mind.
"Erik…Erik?" cries the voice.
Opening his eyes, Erik falls back and gasps at the frightened look on Isis's worried face. Loosening his fingers from Isis's, Erik weakly takes a couple steps away from the woman who frighteningly holds the same beauty and grace as the mother who had forsaken him.
"Who…who are you?" whispers Erik.
"Erik…I" replies Isis confused. Slowly, Isis takes a step closer to Erik, but seeing him jump back by her movement, immediately freezes her in place, "I'm your sister"
"Why are you here?" breathes Erik painfully.
"I've been searching for you" replies Isis in a soft comforting voice.
"Searching for me…why?" asks Erik confused.
Before Isis can explain her reasoning; the voices of reason begins to swim and crash within his head, warding his crumbling mind to not fall into this devious sirens call. Doubling over in pain, Erik crosses his arms around his burning chest as he painfully stumbles back away from Isis's worried gaze. Slamming against the wall, Erik slowly slides down the slippery surface to crash to the floor.
"Erik!" cries Isis worried.
'Don't believe her…she's not your sister…it's a façade…your sister's…your brother's never wanted anything to do with you' echoes a dark, silky voice.
'They all hated you…despised and loathed you' echoes a gravely voice.
'You were unwanted…unloved since birth…a stain to the family name…to society' echoes a third deep voice.
'No…it can't be true…it can't be…she looks' cries Erik.
'Your whole damn family hated you…your mother…all of them, saw and felt you to be a curse…set upon them to destroy them' sneers the gravely voice.
'They never loved you…they hated you…they all cursed the day you were birthed into their lives!' echoes the sinister voice.
'No…she loved me' weeps Erik.
'Did she ever raise a kind hand or voice to you…no…she would much rather beat you…yell at you…say and do nasty hurtful things to you than touch or kiss you like a real mother would' spits back the dark, silky voice.
'But Isis…she' pleads Erik.
'What you had seen was a false memory…she never cared for you…nor did she care enough about you to try and stop your father from selling you to the circus…where you life was filled with pain…torment…hell?' mocks the deep voice.
'She couldn't…she' breathes Erik.
'She didn't care nor love you…she was happy…she celebrated with the rest of the family, the instant you were removed from the house…she never wanted to find you…she was happy, ecstatic at the thought of you writhing in pain and misery in that hell' roars the deep gravely voice.
'But' cries Erik.
"Think about it…if she really cared for you…she would have searched and found you in that torture, and rescued you…but she didn't…she left you to die by your masters hands!'
'Your better off alone' laughs the dark voice.
'You're safer alone…in the darkness…no one can hurt you…deceive you' coos the silky voice.
"Yes…yes I was left alone…alone to suffer and die…to be stripped of my rights as a human…raped of my soul, my heart, my body" chokes out Erik.
'Do not let this harlot deceive you…do not allow yourself to be weak again…rise above the lies…grab the wheel of fate and be the man…the master of your life…your destiny!' echoes the three voices at once.
"I will not be weak anymore" growls Erik.
"Erik…what…what are you?" whispers Isis worriedly.
"Get out" growls Erik, as he throws Isis an evil glare.
"What…Erik…what is going on?" cries Isis.
Feeling that she is beginning to lose her brother to the deceiving folds of ice and darkness, Isis bravely takes another step closer to his quivering form, hunched over against the wall. Extending her hand out, Isis makes one last prayer that her touch, her voice will help break the spell being weaved over his mind.
"Don't come near me!" Roars Erik as he viciously bats Isis's hand away.
Gathering his strength, Erik angrily rises back to his feet. Taking a menacing step closer to her, Isis gasps inwardly at the violently crashing waves of the dark blue swirling within his eyes.
"Erik…please" pleads Isis.
Ignoring the warnings in her mind, Isis slowly tries to reach a comforting hand out towards her enraged brother's form in desperation to quell the rage.
Seeing her movement, Erik shoots out a hand towards her, stopping her in place. Clutching tightly to her outstretched hand, Erik angrily gives the lying woman's hand a hard squeeze as his heavy breathes echo around the silent room
"Don't you dare come near me you lying harlot!" roars Erik.
"Erik…what's happening to you?" cries Isis, wincing from the pain.
"Get away from me!" roars Erik, throwing down Isis's hand, "I will not be weak anymore…I will not fall into the deception of the lies you've been weaving…my family is dead to me!"
Jumping back from the ferocity of her father's voice, Miranda worriedly stares at the inanimate door blocking her passage to his private office.
"This…is not going to be good" whispers Miranda.
Although every muscle in her body yearns to throw open the doors and stop this, she still knew, that this encounter was inevitable, and needed to be done. Biting back her urge, Miranda cautiously returns her ear back to the door, hoping and praying that Erik will believe Isis, and allow her into his heart and life.
"I care and love you Erik…I wanted to" cries Isis as she stumbles away from Erik.
"I thank you for what you have done for me and my staff" starts Erik as he storms over to the office door, "but your services…your presence…is no longer needed nor wanted here" snarls Erik.
Wrapping his elegant fingers around the knob, Erik half spins back around to glare maniacally back into Isis's quivering eyes. But, pushing away her fears, Isis continues to stand against the warnings buzzing within her mind that her brother is very much teetering on the edge of the knife of his temper and rage.
"I will not leave until you believe me!" snaps Isis.
"You shall leave this office immediately and never return!" roars Erik.
Knowing she will not voluntarily leave his office by his sharp, icy words, Erik emits an angry roar before letting go of the golden. Storming up next to the woman who matches his temper and rage equally to his own, Erik angrily glares back into Isis's matching enraged eyes.
"No" smiles Isis smugly.
Nearing the boiling point of no return, Erik angrily emits another roar of anger and frustration back at Isis before spinning back around and storming back to the door. Blinded by his rage, Erik balls his hand in a tight fist and punches the wooden door, before grabbing the golden knob in his trembling hand.
Startled by the sudden movement, Miranda, and Kiara both jump out of the way from the sound of the golden knob being turned by Erik on the other side. Before the others can react, the doors crash open, sending Antoinette, Nicholas and the rest of the staff to tumble in all directions.
Hearing something fall around him, Erik snaps his attention down to the sight of his two most trusted friends, and employees lay scattered in a heap on the floor. Blinded by his rage, Erik's tempered mind whirls with questions as to what the hell Antoinette, Nicholas, and the rest of his staff had been doing. Although under normal circumstances, Erik could have guessed.
"What the devil are you all doing!" roars Erik.
"Nothing" smiles Kiara.
"Can't a man get any form of privacy in this goddamn wretched place!" roars Erik.
Needing to get away from everyone before his temper exploded out of control, Erik twists back around and storms past the awkward and embarrassed smiles and stares being thrown at him by everyone still either laying or standing before him.
"Should we?" starts Miranda worried.
"Damnit Erik…I tried to save you…to shield you from our parents hands!" roars Isis as she steps out of the darkness of Erik's office.
Turning at the same time, both Kiara and Miranda stare bewildered back into Isis's equally matched infuriated glare still being thrown at Erik's now fading backside.
"Never mind" quips Miranda, quickly tightening her lips together.
"You can't keep running from your past, from the truth…sooner or later you'll have to stand before it and embrace it!" thunders Isis.
"I…beg…your…pardon" huffs Erik as he halts to a stop.
"You heard me" snaps Isis.
Glaring at his trembling back side; Isis angrily steps out of the darkness and into the light of the rest of the firm. Ignoring the people around her rising back up to there feet, Isis takes a hard stance a couple feet away from Miranda and Kiara.
Knowing that both are reaching the boiling point of their equally stubborn rage, the bystanders slowly turn there fearful gazes to the hopeful watchers who had always been successful at calming their bosses raging temper.
"This really is not good" murmurs Kiara, frightened by the deadly standoff between Erik and Isis.
"Why the fuck would you care!" roars Erik as he spins madly around to face Isis again.
"I'm your sister Erik, your family…I care and love you…I wanted to stop what was happening to you…to stop our father from beating and selling you off to the circus!" snarls Isis.
"Than why didn't you!" snaps Erik.
Unable to really answer the question thrown at her by Erik, Isis defeatingly lowers her quivering eyes to the floor. Reeling from the chaos of her emotions, Isis tries to search out the answer within her frantic mind as to why she could not, nor didn't search to find him and save her beloved brother from his torturous life. But sadly, the answer to the posted question cannot be answered within her mind. For poor Isis really did not know the answer because sadly, it was a question that Isis had struggled to answer since she was young.
"That's what I thought…you speak the words with a sharp tongue…but your soul…your heart…cannot back up the false determination and strength laced within that speech" snarls Erik.
"Listen to me Erik…I" pleads Isis.
"You say you tried to find me…to save me from the evils of our father…of the world!" roars Erik. Taking a threatening step closer to her, Erik thrusts a quivering hand out to clutch tightly around Isis's tight throat, "Well…your too late…our father…our mother…the people…and the world…has done their part in destroying me!"
"I did…I swear to the almighty above that I tried to…Erik, there wasn't a day that went by that I didn't regret not stopping our father from dolling out the abuse you suffered from" pleads Isis.
"He was abused?" questions Roger.
"Than you didn't try hard enough" snarls Erik.
Feeling his rage spin out of control, Erik blindly tightens his hands around Isis's neck for a split second before loosening his grip.
"Erik…please, I tried to find you…but!" protests Isis.
"Damn you!" yells Erik as he steps even closer to Isis, "you knew…just like she did…just like all of them knew…you stood by and allowed that bastard of a man sell me off to those vile men…to be sold into enslavement…being whipped and shown to people from all over the globe…to be beaten and raped day and night by the man that had paid our father to take me off your hands!"
"Raped?" chokes Miranda and Kiara at the same time.
Clutching her hands to her chest; Kiara slowly backs away from Miranda's quivering form. Her soft hazel eyes stare horrified down to the floor as Erik's words of what he had experienced in his childhood echo within her mind.
'Oh god…Erik' cries Kiara's voice in her mind.
"No…I never wanted that to happen to you…I wanted to protect you!" pleads Isis.
"Lying bitch!" roars Erik.
"No" In desperation to sooth the rage back into the depths of darkness from which it came, Isis weakly brings a trembling hand up to cup Erik's quivering cheek. Giving him a small, painful smile, Isis fights against her body's protests at pushing fresh air into her burning lungs, "I loved you…very much" chokes out Isis.
"Enough!" roars Erik.
Completely blinded by his rage, Erik angrily throws Isis's trembling body to the ground. Ignoring her cries of pain; Erik viciously lunges down towards her tear filled eyes. His pale hands stretch and lengthen out into the emptiness of the stale, thick air, trembling dangerously close to the edges of Isis's sore neck.
"I remember nothing of the lies you are weaving" growls Erik darkly as he takes a threatening step closer to her fallen form.
"Stop this!" cries Miranda.
Hearing his daughter's shrill cry, Erik slowly raises his heated gaze up to Miranda's pleading tear filled eyes. Her delicate hands, clutched in trembling fists rest at her sides as her terrified gaze stabs like daggers within his frozen heart.
"She's telling you the truth" pleads Miranda.
"How the hell would you know!" roars Erik as he takes a threatening step closer to Miranda's quivering form.
"We've seen it in her soul…in her heart and in her eyes…she speaks the truth Erik…she's speaking the truth!" cries Kiara.
"You both new of this deceiving harlots plans…and still did nothing to stop her!" roars Erik, turning his enraged eyes back down to Isis's trembling form.
"Yes" whispers Kiara.
"Than your all just as deceiving as she is" snarls Erik.
"Erik please…I never wanted to deceive you…you deserved to know the truth…to have the past healed and laid to rest so you could step into the future with hope and love in your heart!" cries Kiara.
"You lying bitch!" roars Erik, as he viciously tears his enraged eyes from Isis's to Kiara's soft doe like eyes.
Startled by his voice; Kiara stumbles back into the comforting arms of Antoinette who had silently stepped up behind her.
"Do not…speak another word" threatens Erik as he takes a couple threatening steps closer to Kiara, "anything that comes out of your mouth…will hold no consequence or interest to me now!"
Wrenching herself free, Kiara bravely takes a few bold steps closer to Erik's threatening form now trembling from the crashing waves of his rage.
"Erik please…listen to me!" begs Kiara.
Slowly, Kiara reaches her slender hand out towards Erik, hoping against hope that the softness of her touch will help break the veil of rage clouding his eyes. But, just as her outstretched fingers are but mere inches away from touching Erik's does two firm hands clasp around her midsection, pulling her away from the man her heart and soul has been yearning for. "No!" cries Kiara.
"It's alright my dear" soothes Antoinette.
"Erik!" cries Kiara.
Desperately, Kiara pulls against Antoinette's strangely strong hold, as her rage billows and churns by the irritating halt of her desires to reach and calm the man she loves. Feeling something touch her shoulders, Kiara angrily whips her head to the side to see Nicholas stand silently next to her, his deep chocolate eyes glisten with tears of sadness and pain.
"You would do no better services to Erik or anyone else by throwing yourself at him right now" warns Nicholas coldly.
"But" cries Kiara.
"No child" scolds Nicholas sadly.
"Every single one of you had a hand in betraying me!" thunders Erik.
"No father!" cries Miranda.
"I' am not your father you wretched lying bitch…I' am nobody's fool…not anymore…the wool, the blindfold that you have all placed over my eyes is torn away…I see you all for the true beings that you really are!" roars Erik.
"Erik no!" cries Antoinette.
Gently, Antoinette delivers Kiara into the protective arms of Nicholas before lovingly stepping up closer to the man who, as a boy, she had seen laying writhing in pain and agony in the snow and ice, be saved from the ever growing darkness that had been placed in his heart by his heartless parents.
"Erik my son…hear my words and believe me…what Isis, Kiara and Miranda had done was not out of spite…it was done out of love…they…and I…all love and care for you very much…and only want to see you happy" pleads Antoinette.
"No one cares for me, nobody!" roars Erik.
"That's not true!" cries Kiara.
"How would you know…you were not born with this mark…no one could care for one who bares the sin of the devil!" thunders Erik.
"That's not true…I love you!" screams Kiara.
A loud audible gasp blankets the fiery atmosphere created by the heat of Erik's rage and Isis's desperation. One by one, the office staff's eyes widen in surprise at the declaration that was announced by one of the most un-likeliest, they had figured to have fallen for the recluse, dark man.
Damaged and distraught by Kiara's words, Claudine slowly takes a couple broken steps closer to the wall; her thick hands press hard against her chest where her heart slowly cracks and shatters with each horrendous beat.
"Don't you dare speak such false pledges to me!" snaps Erik.
"Its true father" replies Miranda softly. Carefully, Miranda steps closer to the enraged man now glowering at her with a murderous glare, "she loves you…very much"
"The ring on your finger speaks otherwise!" quips Erik.
"I" stammers Kiara.
Truthfully, Kiara had planned on throwing out the hideous thing that symbolized her life, her soul being bound to the one man her body, and heart writhes in pain from the mere touch, away once she was sure that she and Erik were safe from his clutches.
"Nothing to protest against that…ha…you black hearted deceiving whore…you care for nothing nor love anyone…the only thing you do love…or desire…is power…and you care not for who you ruin or destroy in the process" replies Erik, a wicked grin tugs at the sides of his lips from the triumph of silencing the lying whores tongue from her false declaration.
"Please listen to me Erik…ever since the first day that Miranda had introduced you to me in your office did my heart swell and beat for you and you alone" pleads Kiara.
"Liar…do not dare speak such words to me…your already promised to love another!" roars Erik as he points an elegant finger up at the glittering ring still banded on her finger.
"She doesn't want to marry Roland…she hates him…despises him…she wants to be with you and only you father!" screams Miranda.
Angrily, Erik's trembling eyes glare into the sincere faces of the ones who he had, for most of his life, trusted full heartedly now stand against him.
"Let go of your anger and see that we all are telling you the truth!" cries Isis.
"The truth…ha…you all wouldn't know the truth if it came up and smacked up and smacked you all in the face...how dare you band together against me!" roars Erik. Angrily, Erik half turns to face the woman he had considered to be his mother, "least of all you"
"Erik believe me…I had nothing to do with this!" cries Antoinette.
"Erik!" tries Isis.
"Enough…I will not hear anything more…you are all dead to me…especially you dear sister" snarls Erik as he turns to glare maniacally back into Isis's tear filled eyes, "if you truly are who you say…than I have nothing more to say or do with you…you and your whole damn family turned their backs on me years ago…so to…shall I"
"No…my dearest brother…please don't do this to me…I've hoped and prayed for the day when you and I would be united once more…please don't throw away what you and I both had forged all those years ago" pleads Isis.
Feeling the last threads of his temper snap and break; Erik emits another blood curdling roar before twisting around to punch the cubicle wall next to him. Silence filling the room, everyone, including the main players to this failed attempt at putting to rest Erik's scarred past, stare horrified at the blood splattered hole. Desperately needing to step away from the others before he unfathomably strikes someone else, including Miranda or Kiara, Erik angrily spins back around, grabs the black wool coat hanging limply over the tipped over coat rack and heads for the door leading to the stairs. Throwing open the doors; everyone flinches from the sound of the panned glass door smashing into the concrete wall.
Feeling Nicholas's arms unwind around her; Kiara slowly takes a couple small steps away as her eyes stare horrified at Erik's form disappearing beneath the shadows canvassing behind the slammed door. A long threatening crack spikes it way up the glass from the stress and force of Erik's temper and rage.
"Erik" whispers Isis brokenly.
"Isis…Isis are you alright?" cries Miranda, upon noticing the hard tremors rising over her rigid body.
Standing frozen in place, Isis half perceives the icy numb traveling up her body from the overwhelming swell of emotions crashing in around her. Weakly, small trembles rise up her spine as her legs begin to buckle beneath her, "Erik" breathes Isis.
Noticing the dangerous sways of Isis's form, Miranda quickly dashes over to the shocked woman's rigid form. Standing next to her, Miranda and Kiara both hold their hands out as Isis's legs buckle beneath her.
"He…he's changed…he's not the same brother I knew before" breathes Isis, now realizing fully of what life had done to him.
"Just give his mind time to wrap around what you had just told him" soothes Antoinette in a gentle voice.
"No" chokes out Isis.
"What my dear?" asks Antoinette startled.
"No…its too late…I'm too late" cries Isis.
"To late for what?" asks Kiara, fear laced within her voice.
"I was too late…too late" sobs Isis hysterically.
"Too late for what…Isis what are you talking about?" asks Nicholas, now kneeling before the hysterical woman.
"I was too late to save him…to bring him back…he's gone…he's really gone!" cries Isis.
Throwing open the glass emblemmed door; Erik stands enraged at the startled and bewildered glances being thrown at him by the people passing by his office.
"What the fuck are you all looking at!" roars Erik.
Giving a small growl of anger at the insolent gawkers still staring at him, Erik swiftly steps off the top step of his building and disappears fast up the street. Blinded still by his rage, Erik pays no attention to where he is going, the only thoughts that crash against his mind is the lies and betrayal given to him by the one's he had thought he could trust the most.
Consumed by his anger, Erik fails to sense or realize the fact that a hulking mass has been following him since he had stepped away from the safety and protection of his firm. Sadly, the only thing his mind continues to return back to is the spiraling voices of the lying bitches, who had some how forced him to foolishly drop his guard; pushing away the voices and warnings that his mind had scolded him for since the day that wretched woman had first stepped into his office.
"Never again never" growls Erik.
But his thoughts are soon shattered when a firm grip grabs a hold of his jacket collar. Before he can turn to see who had dared grab a hold of him; a dizzying nausea and pain overtakes his mind and body from the sickening crack of his head slamming hard against the wall. Agonizing pain overtaking him, stealing away his very breath, Erik slowly begins to fall to the ground by the buckling of his legs, but the same hand that had pulled him into the alley wraps menacingly around his neck. The last small breath that Erik had managed to take in is quickly dispelled by the hard vice like squeeze being placed around his throat, forcing him back up to his unsteady feet.
"Where the hell is she!" roars a raspy voice.
Weakly, Erik fights to keep the haze from taking over his vision from the spinning dizziness still swirling within his aching skull. Bringing his eyes up, Erik stares unfocused back at the face of a man with devilishly icy cold eyes.
"Who…who the hell…are you" chokes out Erik, while fighting to keep the bile down.
"Answer my question!" snarls the man as he bashes Erik against the wall again.
"Kiara…where's the girl" asks the brute of a man choking the air out of Erik's lungs.
"Kiara who?" half chuckles Erik vainly.
Angrily, the man punches Erik in the face before tightening his grip around his neck "Don't play dumb with me…I know your hiding her…now where is she!" roars the man.
"Haven't a clue to who you're referring to" smiles Erik.
Giving the masked man an evil glare, the man releases his grip on Erik's throat. Falling to the ground, Erik launches into a never ending fit of coughs and gasps as his body desperately tries to take in the oxygen that it had been denied. But before Erik can re-catch his breath, the man's hand grabs hard onto his injured shoulder. Forcing him upright, Erik clenches his jaw in pain from the explosion of pain radiating from the injured shoulder that had been patched up but a few minutes ago. Weakly raising his eyes up, Erik catches the last remnants of the man's cinder block fist slamming into his face and stomach. Doubling over in pain, Erik falls to his knees as his body spasms, trembles from the choking coughs ripping through his mouth and throat from the assault. Feeling the same excruciating pain explode throughout his chest, Erik shakily brings his good hand up to his burning ribs and lungs as he gasps desperately for air.
Circling the masked man writhing in pain, the man steps over to the far wall where a long metal bat rests against the bricks. Grabbing it up in his hand, the man steps back over to Erik's hunched over form. Raising the bat over his head, the man sadistically brings it down and bashes it against his head.
Crumbling to the ground, Erik weakly turns his head to the side before spitting the vile substance swimming within his mouth. His unfocused eyes stare vacantly at the mixture of blood and spit glistening within the crack of the streets.
"Will you tell me now where Kiara is?" asks the man smiling.
Gleeful of his work thus far, the man brings the bat he had just used to smash Erik's skull, up to rest against his shoulder. Splatters of blood glisten against the faint stabs of sunlight shining in through the crevices of the alley on the reflective surface of the metal bat, and brick lining the long alley walls.
"I…I don't know…who…your…talking…about" replies Erik weakly.
Wincing in pain from the explosive pain burning within his skull, Erik weakly brings a trembling hand up to the origin of the pain. A small gasp escapes his lips at the feel of a moist substance sticking to his wandering fingers. Bringing his fingers down to his hazy eyes, Erik inwardly laughs at the sight of his blood staining against his pale flesh.
'The damn man bashed by head in'
"Where is she…you're the only one who knows where she's hiding…tell me…and this will all stop!" threatens the man as he bashes the bat against Erik's chest and stomach.
"Promises…promises" coughs Erik weakly.
"Either you tell me…or" laughs the man
"We too late boss?" interrupts a dark voice.
Looking up, Erik's eyes fights to focus on the image of three muscled men blocking the entrance to the alley. In their hands, they all hold metal bats and chains entwined around there thick fingers.
"Thugs" mutters Erik.
"My associates and I will beat it out of you" threatens Butch, smiling at the fact that his cohorts have finally arrived for the job.
"Do what you want with me…I'll never release Kiara to you or your boss" bites back Erik.
"Well boys…you heard him" smiles Butch, returning his gaze back to the three men who all share an equally devilish look.
Seeing them skulk towards him, Erik weakly tears his eyes away from the men who will no doubt kill him for his stubbornness. Weakly, Erik allows a small strained laugh to escape his lips at the strange, yet familiar situation he had once more fallen into.
Evilly, the four men, with bats raised above there heads glare down at Erik's half limp body writhing in pain from the blows already dealt by Butch's cruel hands. Still struggling to breath, Erik waits in the deadly silence for the torment, the beatings that he had suffered in his past, to come and end his suffering in this cruel, cold world.
"Die!" screams Butch before slamming his bat down into Erik's face, signaling for the others to do the same.
'Kiara!' screams Erik in his mind.
Kiara stands alone and paralyzed by the window that had exploded during the deadly stand off with Roland and the aftermath of the frightening confrontation that had sparked Erik's terrifying temper with Isis. Berating thoughts of why she hadn't warned Erik or Isis before hand of the consequences of revealing such truths to the tormented man continues to encircle her frazzled mind.
'Erik…please forgive me' cries Kiara's voice in her mind.
Lost within the sea of conversations echoing around her, a sudden thought skips across Miranda's mind. Slowly, Miranda turns to face the tormented angelic form of Kiara, half leaning against the intact window pane. The small tussles of the fall breeze cascades over Kiara's petite form and hair, sending the wavy tendrils of her chocolate hair to dance beneath the biting breeze. Smiling, Miranda watches as the breeze seductively kisses at Kiara's silken flesh, causing small raised bumps to appear on her arms and legs. Knowing what Kiara is going through, Miranda quietly steps away from her mother and Nicholas's whispering conversation. Stepping up next to Kiara, Miranda places a gentle hand on the young girls shaking shoulder.
"Miranda…what have I done" chokes out Kiara.
Unable to fight against the tumultuous emotions crashing against her, Kiara slowly lowers her soft hazel eyes down to the city below as small crystal tears spill from her eyes. The slight trembles shivering up her spine increases from the breaking of her pounding heart at the crashing thoughts of betraying the man, which without a backwards glance, would sacrifice her life to protect.
"Kiara…it wasn't just you" soothes Miranda.
"Yes it is…I'm the one who pushed Isis into telling me the truth of her identity…who prompted her to reveal the truth to Erik" cries Kiara.
"We all had a hand in this my dear" soothes a calm voice.
Startled, both Kiara and Miranda look up to see the usually refined and confident Antoinette stand trembling and paled beside the two young women. Her slender hands clasp tightly into trembling fists against her heaving chest as her dull blue eyes stare painfully back into Kiara's.
"We all dealt the blows that sent Erik spiraling into madness" continues Antoinette.
"Where do we go from here?" asks Kiara softly.
"I don't know…we have broken his trust and betrayed him" replies Miranda softly.
"Erik will not be that upset with you guys" replies Isis softly as she steps up next to Kiara and the others "his rage will be more focused on me than on any of you"
"Isis…I suggest you leave now before Erik comes back" bites back Nicholas.
"I can't…I have to speak with him…I have to let him know" pleads Isis.
"I think you've done quite enough!" snaps Nicholas, shutting her up, " don't you get it…don't you understand…Erik's life was fine until you had to step in and stick your nose where it didn't belong…it's because of your selfish behavior…that persuaded and blinded Ms. Kiara here to with hold information from Erik"
"Nicholas…you cannot blame everything on Isis…you and I both knew the day for the truths to be told would come!" scolds Antoinette.
Although in half agreeance with Nicholas over the ill-timing of Isis appearing into Erik's life at this point and time was horrible, she still knew deep down in her heart that his sister would one day appear and lift the past that tormented him for so long, away from his shattered soul. Especially when Isis herself had come to Antoinette years ago inquiring about her brother, and it had been at that time that Antoinette had told Isis that Erik was safe and with her, but pleaded with her to wait for the right time to come forward and step back into his life.
"How can you say that Antoinette…you above everyone else knew how Erik was going to react to this!" gasps Nicholas, truly surprised by Antoinette's words.
"Yes Nicholas…I knew exactly how Erik was to react to such news…but Erik also deserved to know that he was still loved and cared for by at least one of his family members...Nicholas" pleads Antoinette as she turns to face the one that Miranda liked to call the Old man, "it would have been foolish, hateful and vial of us to withhold such information from him and allow Erik to go on with this false façade of believing that his entire family never loved him"
"I know that Antoinette…it's just" sighs Nicholas.
"We both know that we couldn't protect him forever?" soothes Antoinette.
"I didn't want to hurt him…he's already been through so much" replies Nicholas sadly.
"Erik" cries Kiara hysterically.
"Kiara…what is it…what's wrong!" screams Miranda.
"Erik" whispers Kiara.
Crystal tears prickle within Kiara's doe like eyes from the heart wrenching fear that something terrible is happening to the man her heart yearns to be with.
"Erik…what about Erik?" asks Antoinette, fearful for the boy she had saved.
"He's in trouble" answers Miranda, getting the same feeling.
"What do you mean he's in trouble?" gasps Antoinette.
"I can feel it…he's in trouble…he needs my help!" screams Kiara.
"He's in pain…excruciating pain" cries Miranda.
"I'm going" replies Roger.
Twisting around, Miranda and Kiara stare surprised and shocked at Roger walking determinedly over to his desk. Grabbing his coat, Roger spins back around and heads to the elevators.
"Roger…you don't even know where he is" replies Miranda as she runs up next to her dear friend and somewhat bodyguard.
"It doesn't matter…if Mr. Destler is in trouble…than I'm going to find him and protect him" replies Roger in a stern voice.
"Than I'm going too!" snaps Miranda.
"And I!" adds Kiara.
"Me too!" declares Claudine proudly.
"Claudine you fat cow…you'll only slow us down!" snaps Miranda, rather irritated that this ignorant woman would dare try and volunteer to find her father; especially when Miranda had already begun to feel that Claudine was up to something, something, not good.
"Why's that…why is the woman who has hurt Mr. Destler the most granted the right to go and search for him instead of me!" wails Claudine, angry by Miranda stepping in her way.
"You idiotic imbecile…she's given the right as you put it because she is truly in love with him…instead of you who waits for a man that does not nor ever will love you" growls Miranda.
"How dare you" growls Claudine.
"You've been obsessed with my father since the beginning…when will you get it through that skull of yours that he doesn't nor will ever love you!" screams Miranda.
Enraged by Miranda's words, Claudine spins on her heels and storms out of the office. Pushing the button, Claudine half turns to glare manically back at Miranda's angry face "Just you wait" growls Claudine before stepping into the elevators.
Shaking himself out of the stupor that he had fallen into from the rather strange argument between Miranda and Claudine, Nicholas slowly takes a step next to the small group.
"You two can't be flying off the handle by just a feeling…for all you know Erik is just fine and walking off his temper."
Although inwardly, Nicholas too held feelings of fear over the man he considered to be like a brother to him, Nicholas still could not justify nor welcome the idea of one of the staff, especially Kiara running through the streets in order to find Erik on the whim of her and Miranda feelings. Especially if they were wrong and Erik was perfectly fine.
"I know Miranda all too well Nicholas" replies Roger. Staring at him with a confident glare "I know and seen these two women love and care for Mr. Destler more than anyone else...and when someone loves and cares for a person that much…they can feel whether or not they are in danger"
"Please Nicholas…I can feel it…my father needs my help" pleads Miranda.
"You don't even know where he is" whispers Nicholas softly.
"I know where he is…" replies Kiara. Taking a gentle step closer to Nicholas, Kiara places a comforting hand on the muscular man's shoulder "I'll guide them"
"It's too dangerous" whispers Nicholas.
"But…you can't leave this office…Roland may grab you" cries Antoinette.
"Not with me there" smiles Roger.
Gathering both Miranda and Kiara up in his arms, Roger gives a very reluctant and worried Nicholas a confident smile as he presses the two against his muscular chest.
"My hero" jokes Miranda.
"Roger…I don't think" retorts Antoinette.
Inwardly, Antoinette's heart lurches at the idea of allowing Kiara to run off into the city where she'd be more vulnerable for Roland to come up and grab her. But, she was also fearful of what Erik would do or say if he were to find out that she allowed Kiara to go without someone much better suited to watch over her too.
"You'll need someone to protect Kiara…in case if that bastard comes back" smiles Roger.
"But" protests Antoinette.
"Antoinette…I may look measly…but I got muscles" smiles Roger as he flexes his rather big bicep muscles for the onlooker, "plus I'm a black belt in my self defense classes"
"Roger" tries Antoinette.
"Besides if we find Mr. Destler these two ladies will need someone strong to help carry him back to the firm" laughs Roger as he pokes Miranda in the arm.
"I've been working out too Roger" snarls Miranda, not liking the fact that Roger is giving her the label of being weak, just cause of being a woman.
"Roger are you sure?" asks Nicholas, wanting to stifle an argument that is sure to be started between the two.
"Yes…I'll call the office if we need any help…or if we find him" replies Roger.
Knowing there is no way of deterring her daughter nor Kiara from this decision, Antoinette steps up and gives both women a gentle hug.
"Well find him Antoinette…and return him back safely" smiles Kiara.
Giving her mother and Nicholas a small smile, Miranda, Roger, and Kiara turn and run towards the door leading to the small bank of stairs.
"Find him…please god…find him" prays Antoinette.
The silver bat encased with glass and nails glistens against the rays of the sun glistening, stabbing through the darkness encasing the alley. With a sickening crack, the sadistic bat smashes against Erik's chest, breaking the bones that had begun to heal. Gasping for air from the agonizing burning inflaming his lungs; Erik painfully falls to the ground, half covered in his own blood on the ice cold ground. Hideous lacerations, bruises, and gashes cover his face and arms. Beads of blood still pour from the crack that he had taken from Butch slamming the bat into his skull, pools around him in a crimson halo.
Feeling a hand grab a hold of his drenched raven locks, Erik clenches his jaw as his head is forced upwards. Inwardly, Erik gasps at the feel of cold steel being pressed against his tight throat as his beaten body is lifted off the ground.
Slammed against the brick wall, the flame of a knife slicing gruesome deep laceration marks across his beaten chest sends an explosion of pain to ripple throughout Erik's entire body. Unable to stand against the numbing pain, Erik's legs buckle beneath him as crimson blood spills from the wounds. But a strong hand grabs his injured shoulder, forcing him upright. Before Erik is given the chance to catch his breath, the flaming burn of a flamed lighter burns the skin of his chest, boiling the beads of blood still dripping from the laceration wounds.
Screaming in pain, Erik clenches his eyes closed as his body is thrown and slammed against hard muscle. Unconsciously, Erik's body stiffens against the feel of the icy blade saturated in blood being pressed against his throat again.
"You gonna tell me where she is?" growls Butch in Erik's bleeding left ear.
"Never" groans Erik in pain as the burning flame being pressed against his body burns his skin.
"Guess he still hasn't learned yet" smiles Butch smugly.
Pushing him to the ground, the three men standing around his writhing body reaches down and tears apart Erik's silk dress shirt. Seeing the mounds of raised flesh criss crossing in gruesome, sadistic patterns on his hunched back, causes the three men to step back in horror over the sight of the abuse that this man had already suffered at the hands of another.
Unmoved by the horrifying sight, Butch reaches down and forcefully yanks Erik back up to his feet. Slamming him against his chest, Butch once again presses the blade against his throat.
"Well…let's teach this man a lesson" smiles Butch.
"But…did you" starts one of the men.
"Who gives a shit what this man may have suffered before…he probably deserved it back than as he does now…I mean…look at him!" screams Butch.
Without a warning, the man rips the mask from Erik's face, revealing the deformity that had always been shielded from others curious glances.
"No" cries Erik weakly.
"My god…it's…it's hideous!" gasps one of the men as he steps back horrified.
"See…he's a monster...he deserves what's happening to him now as when he received those wounds on his back in the past!" roars Butch, shaking Erik viciously.
Gaining back their senses, the three men bring their blood splattered bats up to rest against their broad shoulders. Stepping up closer to Erik's trembling body, the three men gives the disfigured monster, who yearns for love, for peace, for happiness, a cynical smile before swinging the metal bats against his legs, breaking the bones.
Clenching his jaw in hopes of quelling the cry of pain rising within his tight throat, Erik begins to fall to the ground beneath the agonizing pain taking over his shattered legs, but Butch's hard grasp stops his fall. Forcing him to stand, the men continue to bash his legs, chest, stomach, and head.
"We'll…are you going to tell us now?" asks Butch, leaning into Erik's ear again.
Feeling the searing pain erupting within his tight chest, Erik inwardly laughs at the fact that the ribs that had begun to heal, break and shatter from the metal bats beating against his chest.
"Go…to…hell" gasps Erik in pain.
With his free hand, Butch grabs a hold of the newly sewn up arm that Isis had tended too an hour ago. Forcing it straight out, Butch gives one of the men an evil nod. Understanding what his boss is telling him, the man grabs a hold of the arm and twists it in a sickening position, dislocating the arm from the socket. Letting go, Butch and the men laugh manically at Erik's arm swinging limply in the frozen air. Screaming and writhing in pain, Erik's entire arm goes numb beneath the surging pain encompassing his shattered mind.
Hearing the blood curdling scream laced within the freezing fall wind paralyzes Miranda, Kiara, and Roger in there steps as the horrifying pain and agony interwoven within the scream. Feeling their hearts shatter and break from the ferocity of the pain, Kiara slowly places a quivering hand in Miranda's.
"That was Erik's scream!" cries Kiara.
"But…where did it come from?" asks Roger, fear taking over his mind at the dreaded thought of not reaching his boss and mentor in time.
"Down that alley!" yells Kiara.
Pointing a few miles up the stone walkway lining the many glitzy buildings and shops, Miranda tightens her grip on Kiara's hand before running full tilt up the sidewalk.
"You ready to tell us now?" asks Butch after Erik's screams fade beneath the wails of the city.
"Eat...shit" bites back Erik painfully.
"Man…you are a stubborn man" laughs Butch.
A small strangled chortle of a laugh dances within the freezing air at the irony of his life that has followed him, like a stalker, through the years he's had to live in this horrendous world. The very sadistic irony born from the very prideful stubbornness that Erik had sadly been told many of times from Antoinette, Nicholas, and Miranda, was going to get him killed some day. Yet knowing that his sacrifice will help ensure Kiara's safety; Erik weakly smiles from within at the harmonious thoughts that his life will have ended protecting the woman who had dared to fall in love with a monster.
"We'll?" asks one of the men
Before Erik can say another word, the man that had managed to dislocate his shoulder bashes the bat against the other arm, breaking it at the elbow.
"How bout now?" chuckles Butch voice; beneath Erik's cries of pain and agony.
For throughout his entire childhood, he had always vowed that if God were to grant him the luxury, the heavenly touch, and feel of a true angel to fall in love with him, that he would give his life to protect her. And now, as he lays dying and bleeding on the freezing pavement, does God half grant him his fondest wish, his deepest yearnings at this time in his torturous life.
"Do what you want with me…I'll never…tell you" seethes Erik, fighting to keep his vision from plunging into the rising darkness enveloping in around him.
"So be it!" sneers Butch as he raises his metal bat, covered in nails and broken glass above his head.
'Please Kiara…be safe…be happy' echoes Erik's pained voice.
In a flash, the four men bring the bats down onto Erik's writhing body, sending splatters of blood to stain the wall and pavement from the gruesome beating being given to the man willing to die to protect the woman he loves.
A few feet from the alley, Kiara's heart begins to beat faster within her chest at the sight of the place her heart and mind has leaded her too.
"He's in there!" yells Kiara, pointing at the spot.
"Are you sure?" asks Miranda, stepping up next to her.
"Yes…I know he's" starts Kiara, but pauses at the sight of the four men, splattered in blood, step out of the alley, bats in hand.
"What…what is it?" asks Miranda.
Confused at the paling color now appearing on her friends face, Miranda slowly turns her gaze to Kiara's frozen stare. Seeing the men, Miranda unconsciously brings a quivering hand up to her lips at the sight that had drained the color from her friends face.
"My god" whispers Miranda.
"Erik!" screams Kiara.
In her desperation to reach the man she loves, Kiara ignores the warnings screaming within her mind from the men still close to the alley's entrance. Pushing those thoughts aside, Kiara runs towards the alley that the men had just stepped out of.
Hearing her screams, Butch and the men turn and smile at the sight of the person they had been ordered to find and return back to Roland.
"There she is boys!" laughs Butch.
"Kiara!" screams Miranda.
Jumping in the way, Butch glares back down into Kiara's quivering form "And where do you think your going young lady?"
"Erik…what the hell did you do to him!" screeches Kiara.
Furious with the thought that these men had hurt the man her heart beats for, Kiara balls her petite hands into tight quivering fists. Blinded by anger and pain, Kiara bashes her fists against the man's hard chest as stinging tears of pain and agony spill from her eyes.
"That tickles" laughs Butch.
"You bastards…what did you do to him!" screams Kiara.
"Nothing compared to what our boss is going to do to you" sneers Butch.
With that, Butch reaches down and grabs hard onto Kiara's wrists. Wincing, a cry of pain escapes Kiara's lips from the hard grasp breaking the small fragile bones in her wrists. Desperate to evade being returned back to the wretched man that has tried to break her spirit, Kiara frantically fights against the man's vice like grip.
"Let me go…let me go right now!" screams Kiara.
"You shut up!" yells Butch. Angrily, Butch punches Kiara hard across the face "Your coming with me right now"
"No…let me go!" screams Kiara.
"Your returning back to the one you belongs to…so stop fighting it" smiles Butch as he punches Kiara again.
Enraged by this man's behavior and the promise she made to her father at protecting Kiara, Miranda body moves on its own full tilt towards the man that will return her father's angel back to the abusive devil that will surly kill her for her insolence.
"Miranda no!" screams Roger, noticing Miranda sudden movement towards the hulking man.
Tightening her hand into a fist, Miranda swings it forward, bashing the man hard in the cheek and stomach. Doubling over in pain, Butch releases Kiara from his grasp.
"Miranda!" cries Kiara.
"Get out of here now!" roars Miranda.
"No" protests Kiara.
In a flash, Miranda grabs a hold of Kiara's jacket and throws her to the side as an object from the corner of her eyes catches her attention.
"Miranda!" screams Kiara.
Crumpled on the ground, Kiara watches helplessly as the hulking man bashes Miranda hard in the face with the bat that had been resting at his side.
"Miranda!" screams Roger.
Her vision blacking out; Miranda limply crashes to the ground as crimson blood splatters and pools around her on the ice and snow.
"Oh my god!" cries Kiara.
Cries of agony escapes Kiara's tight throat at the sight of crimson blood spilling from the side of Miranda's bleeding head. Blinded by tears, Kiara lunges towards her friends limp form lying in a gruesome position against the icy ground. Quivering, Kiara slowly extends her trembling fingers down towards Miranda's paling face, but just as she's about to touch her friend; someone's fingers suddenly grab a hold of her jacket collar. With a hard yank, Kiara clenches her eyes as her body is slammed hard against a muscled body. Twisting and fighting to get free, Kiara balls her hands in tight fists and punches the wretched person now holding her captive.
"Kiara…stop its me!"
"Roger!" questions Kiara as she opens her eyes.
"We have to get out of here!" screams Roger desperately.
"But Miranda" cries Kiara.
"If you try and save her you'll be betraying her sacrifice at keeping you safe" warns Roger.
"Roger…I can't leave her there!" wails Kiara.
"Listen to me" orders Roger as he places his two thick hands on either side of Kiara's trembling face, "run…run back to the office…I'll call the police and help Miranda".
"You can't face them!" cries Kiara, hysterical at the idea of losing another person she cares about.
"Better me than you" replies Roger as he gives the angelic woman a kind smile.
"Roger?" whispers Kiara.
"Go…go now!" roars Roger.
Giving the man a silent smile, Kiara turns back in the direction of the firm and runs. Seeing her flee, Roger gives a silent prayer of hope that he will be able to distract the men enough for her to get back to the safety of the firm. Grabbing the item needed in his pants pocket, Roger whips it out and madly dials the number needed.
"I need an ambulance and police at the corner of Broadway and Hope" replies Roger.
"What's the emergency?" asks the static voice on the other end.
"Female being assaulted by four men…there beating her with bats…please hurry!"
Before the person on the other end can say another word, Roger presses the end button. Dialing the number to the office, Roger waits for the voice of Antoinette or Nicholas to answer.
"Hello?" echoes Antoinette's voice.
"Antoinette…Kiara is heading back to the office…you and Nicholas help her inside" huffs Roger, desperate to get off the phone and help Miranda.
"Why…what's happening…where's my daughter?" asks Antoinette hysterically.
"I've called an ambulance for her…don't come down here…police are coming too…I'm going to try and get these men away from her"
"Roger…what's happening…is she alright…did you find Erik!" screams Antoinette.
Hanging up the phone, Roger places the thing back in his pocket before returning a determined glare back at the four men beating Miranda's lifeless body with there fists and feet. Confident at knowing that his sacrifice is for the good of protecting both Miranda and Erik, Roger allows a small smile to cross his face.
"Hey…ugly!" screams Roger.
A half hour later the piercing echo of police sirens and the ambulance rings out through the city, stopping traffic and bystanders. Hearing the noise, Butch carefully rises back up to his feet. Turning towards the sound, Butch's eyes widen in surprise and confusion at the sight of the police and ambulance heading there way.
"Hey boys…the PIGS are coming" growls Butch.
Stopping what there doing, the men swings the bats back up to rest on there shoulders again before turning and taking off down a long alley way.
Screeching to a halt, the police and EMT's jump out of there cars. Reaching both Miranda's and Roger's limp bodies first, a tall muscular man with short brown hair and hazel eyes kneels before the two Placing two gentle fingers on both Miranda's and Roger's blood soaked neck the police man watches in silence as the EMT's remove medical supplies from their black cases.
"You men search the area!" orders a tall muscular man with long brownish blond hair, "Taylor…are they both alive?"
"Yes" sighs the man in relief.
"We have two victims of a savage beating going en route to the hospital over" replies the brownish blond haired man.
"Captain...there's no one here!" breathes the three officers who had searched for the perpetrators responsible for this savage beating.
"Keep searching…you EMT's get your asses over here now!" orders the captain.
Reaching the building, Kiara flings open the door to the place she knew she would be safe. Running up the stairs; Kiara crashes through the door, startling the small group of occupants standing around the bullet riddled room.
"Kiara!" gasps Antoinette.
Falling to her knee's, Kiara brings a quivering hand up to her chest as she tries to catch her breath. Hearing people run towards her, Kiara weakly brings her shaking eyes up to stare sadly into the worried eyes of Antoinette, Nicholas, Isis, and the rest of the staff all staring at her.
"What happened…where's Miranda and Roger…where's Erik!" cries Antoinette.
"Couldn't…get…to…Erik…Miranda…she's…hurt…Roger" gasps Kiara.
"She's hurt…what happened to her…what did they do to her!" screams Antoinette as she grabs a hold of Kiara's shoulders.
"They grabbed me…Miranda tried to save me…they hit her…with a metal bat in the head…oh god the blood" cries Kiara.
Loosing her resolve, Kiara falls into Antoinette's chest as tears of pain spill from her eyes. Feeling sorry for the poor girl, Antoinette gently enfolds her arms protectively around Kiara's shaking form.
Hearing a phone ring Kiara's eyes dart to Nicholas struggling to fish the cell phone from his pants pocket; grabbing it, Nicholas presses the button as he jumps back to his feet.
"Hello?...Yes…yes…I know those two…Miranda and Roger…ok…thank you officer…yes…we'll be there right away "
"Nicholas?" breathe Antoinette.
"That was the police…they found your number in Roger's phone" replies Nicholas as he places the phone back down.
"And?" asks Antoinette anxiously.
"They asked if I knew the two people who were found by a nearby alley…told them there names…that's when the man told me that Miranda and Roger are being transported to the hospital with life threatening injuries" explains Nicholas, half choking back the tears wishing to spill forth from the last part spoken.
"Oh god" cries Antoinette.
"We need to get to the hospital post haste" replies Nicholas as he pockets his phone back in his pants.
"I'll drive" smiles Antoinette.
"My dear" smiles Nicholas as he grabs gently onto Antoinette's quivering hands, "You are in no condition to drive"
"But I'm" argues Antoinette.
"Your trembling…your mind is too consumed with worries regarding Miranda…therefore…you won't have the concentration needed" explains Nicholas.
"Fine…but you better not drive like an old man" snaps Antoinette.
Stepping away from Nicholas, Antoinette wraps her slender fingers around Kiara's trembling shoulder. Helping her up on her feet; both women step quickly to the bank of elevators, leaving Nicholas to lower his eyes and shake his head. Looking back up, Nicholas's eyes fall upon Claudine standing a few feet away from the group.
"Isis" sneers Nicholas as he returns his heated gaze back to the woman that had started this whole catastrophe of a day, "you coming too?"
"I…I figured" stammers Isis.
"Your Miranda's friend too…and I'm sure that she would like to see you as well" half smiles Nicholas.
"Yes" smiles Isis.
Reaching a hand out, Nicholas watches as Isis places her delicate hand into his. With a gentle yank, Nicholas helps Isis up and escorts her out of the building.
At the hospital, Kiara, Nicholas, Isis, and Antoinette bolt to the nurse's station on the first floor.
"Where's my daughter!" screams Antoinette.
"And her friend Roger" adds Nicholas in a much calmer voice.
"What's your daughter's and friends names?" asks the nurse.
"Miranda Giry and Roger Firmin" replies Nicholas.
"Here they are" replies the nurse after a few minutes of suffocating silence, "there both on the second floor…rooms 310 and 312"
"Thank you" smiles Nicholas before catching up with the group that had already taken off to the elevators.
Sliding in just before the elevators close, Nicholas turns and gives the group a dark glare as the doors shut and clamp closed.
"You guys could have waited for me" growls Nicholas.
"We were in a hurry" sniffs Isis jokingly.
"I see that" replies Nicholas as he gives Antoinette a dark smirk.
"What…it's my daughter…I have to get to her" gasps Antoinette.
"Women" sighs Nicholas before turning to face the mirrored walls surrounding him.
Once the doors to the elevator opens; Antoinette bolts and skids to the next leveled nurse's station where Isis had been sitting in the day Erik was brought to the hospital.
"Where's rooms 310!" cries Antoinette.
"What?" asks a very startled young blond haired nurse.
"Antoinette…rooms 310 and 312 are down there" replies Isis.
Placing a gentle hand on Antoinette's shaking shoulder; Isis waits as the hysterical woman turns to where she is pointing at.
"Thanks" replies Antoinette before taking off down the hall in a mad dash.
"That's Antoinette" smiles Nicholas before following her.
"Isis…what are you doing here…you don't work today do you?" asks the blond nurse that was startled from her paper work.
"No Mary…my two friends were brought here by ambulance a few minutes ago" smiles Isis.
"Oh…well…I overheard the Dr tell one of the charge nurses that the woman in 310 has a concussion and bruises, some broken bones and a fractured arm…but she should regain consciousness" whispers Mary.
"What of the guy?" asks Isis, a little relieved that Miranda's injuries weren't as bad as she had initially feared.
"He's pretty banged up…concussion as well…a couple broken bones and ribs…he should be waking up soon too" replies Mary.
"Thank you" smiles Isis before heading in the direction of the others.
"Welcome" replies Mary, still a little confused.
Stepping into the room where Miranda is in, Isis slowly steps up next to Antoinette's, Kiara's, and Nicholas's quivering figures.
"The nurse at the station told me" starts Isis, but her words are quickly cut off by the sight of Miranda's beaten and bruised face.
Long surgical bandages stained with blood wrap completely around Miranda's head, as a few strips too are wrapped around her wrists and hand. A long I.V tube trails from her bruised wrist to the saline bag hung next to her bed.
"My god" breathes Isis.
"The doctor in here just told us too" replies Nicholas.
"And?" asks Isis, hoping the story from the nurse will match the doctors.
"He said she has a concussion and a broken wrist, some internal bleeding and a fractured arm" cries Antoinette.
'Damn you Mary' growls Isis in her mind.
"The Dr said he was hopeful that Miranda would wake up…but he said it was entirely up to her" cries Antoinette.
"She will wake up…and soon…you can't give up hope…remember she's one tough cookie" smiles Kiara.
Gently, Kiara places a comforting hand on the small of Antoinette's back. Lovingly, she rubs Antoinette's back in a reassuring motion.
"Thank you Kiara…what about Roger?" asks Antoinette.
"From what I heard, the same…aside from the internal bleeding" replies Isis sadly.
"My god…those horrid beasts of men…how the hell could they be so careless with human life!" screams Antoinette.
"Just like Roland…these men don't have the ability to feel sorrow nor care for who they hurt" seethes Isis.
"Monsters…each and every one of them" seethes Antoinette.
Night slowly envelopes the bustling city within its silken folds of ebony darkness that stretches across the sky, giving way for the full moon and stars to finally make there presence known within the ink of the night.
At the settling of the night; Isis had at that time returned her gaze back up to the clock. Seeing that the clock is reading 10pm, Isis slowly returns her gaze back to Miranda's pale form.
'Come on Miranda…wake up...please give us a sign…anything that tells us your still in there' pleads Isis within her mind.
"Antoinette…I'm going for some more coffee…do you want some as well?" asks Nicholas.
"Please" replies Antoinette slowly.
"I'll be back in five minutes" smiles Nicholas.
Deciding that this is her chance at trying to help comfort the distraught woman, Isis slowly steps up next to Antoinette's quivering form.
"Antoinette…is there anything I can do for you?" asks Isis.
"You've done enough" snaps Antoinette.
"Antoinette?" gasps Kiara.
"Oh stop it Kiara…if it wasn't for her revealing the truth to Erik than Miranda…nor Roger would be in the hospital in a coma!" screams Antoinette.
"Erik" whispers Kiara.
"Antoinette…no one could guess the consequences of such confrontations" pleads Isis.
"Perhaps…but that still does not disclose the fact that it did…and now my daughter has been beaten almost to death!"
"No one else feels worse about this than I…but accusing me...yelling at me…does not fix anything!" snaps Isis, feeling the world famous temper that everyone in the firm knows about begin to bubble and rise within her rigid body.
"Erik" whispers Kiara again.
"You should have just left things the way they were…Erik was just fine before you showed up!" screams Antoinette.
"You mean besides the fact that he was still suffering from nightmares of a past that he's tried to forget…and me!" snarls Isis.
"It was better that he was forgetting you…all of you did nothing but break his spirit, his heart and mind…none of you truly knew the detrimental damages that was done to him!" snaps Antoinette.
"I tried to shield him!" roars Isis.
"As Erik stated before…you had failed…you failed miserably…why don't you just go and leave us all the hell alone!" screams Antoinette.
"What the hell is going on here!" roars a deep voice.
Startled, both Antoinette and Isis turn to see Nicholas standing in the doorway; in his hands he holds two Styrofoam cups filled with steaming coffee.
"Telling Isis the truth as to how we all felt" snaps Antoinette.
"How dare you go back on your words" bites back Nicholas as he takes a defending stance next to Isis.
"Your siding with this bitch!" roars Antoinette.
"Was it not you who had said that we cannot blame everything on Isis…that the both of us knew the day for the truths to be told would someday come…you knew exactly how Erik was to react to such news…that he deserved to know the truth that he was still loved and cared for by at least one of his family members!" bites back Nicholas, using her words against her.
"I made a mistake…I wasn't thinking" stammers Antoinette.
"Oh bullshit" snorts Nicholas.
Angrily Antoinette gestures towards her daughters pale form as the rage in her eyes blazes back at Nicholas and Isis, "I beg your pardon…my daughter is in a coma because of this woman!" screams Antoinette.
"It was not Isis who had convinced Miranda to go out with Kiara in order to find Erik…it was not Isis who had ordered Miranda to take the blow in order to protect Kiara, nor was it Isis who had ordered those savages to beat Miranda and Roger almost to death!" spits back Nicholas.
"But she was the catalyst for this" snarls Antoinette.
"You know just as well as I that she was not the full reason for the madness that was spilt today…all this was started by Roland…true she didn't help the situation…but the real person to blame is the man that had come to the firm and fired the shots" replies Nicholas darkly.
"Erik…Erik" moans a weak, pained voice.
Hearing her daughter's voice, Antoinette spins on her heels to the bed. Kneeling down, Antoinette gently wraps her shaking fingers around her daughters pale hand.
"Miranda…Miranda…it's alright my darling…open your eyes" pleads Antoinette.
Slowly, Miranda's eyes flutter open. Staring weakly back into her mother's tear filled eyes, Miranda weakly gives her mother a comforting smile as she gives her hand a gentle squeeze.
"Hello…mother" replies Miranda weakly.
"My daughter…oh thank god your awake…your alright...your alright" cries Antoinette.
Overcome with emotions, Antoinette shakingly rests her head against her daughter's stiff shoulders. Bringing her hands up to cup her daughter's bruised face, Antoinette allows the sobs she's fought so hard to hold back, to spill forth.
"It's alright mother…it's alright" coos Miranda.
"Bout time you woke up" cries Kiara.
"Kiara…you're alright" smiles Miranda as she pulls her eyes away from her mother's shaking form.
"Yes…thank you…for saving me" smiles Kiara.
"Anytime" smiles Miranda.
But, Miranda's smile fades beneath the folds of her memories of the moments that had lead up to the deadly confrontation.
"Erik…did you find him…is he alright?" cries Miranda.
"Don't worry about that right now Miranda…just rest if you want to heal" soothes Isis.
"Isis…no I can't" struggles Miranda from her mother's grasp.
"Miranda please…calm yourself" replies Nicholas.
"Nicholas…Nicholas…my father...he's still out there...you have to find my father…please!" cries Miranda hysterically.
"I will…but only if you calm yourself and rest" replies Nicholas.
Inwardly, Nicholas kicks himself for forgetting the main reasons to why Miranda and Roger had been out there to begin with.
"Thank you Nicholas…please…please find him" pleads Miranda.
"I will" smiles Nicholas.
"I'll go with you" replies Kiara.
"No you stay here with Miranda and Antoinette" replies Nicholas sharply.
"No…I have to go too…I have to help find him!" pleads Kiara.
"You'd be stupid to go out there again Kiara!" snaps Isis.
"What!" gasps Kiara as she spins around to glare back into Isis's matching emerald blue eyes.
"Think about it…Roland has hired men to track you down and bring you back to him…if you go out there again…even with Nicholas…you'd be asking for trouble" replies Isis darkly.
"He needs me Isis" cries Kiara.
"I'm sorry Kiara" replies Nicholas. Placing a gentle hand on her shoulder, Nicholas watches as Kiara spins back around to face him, "with the threat of these men still loose on the streets of New York has unfortunately raised the urgency for your safety"
"Meaning?" asks Kiara confused.
"You are no longer able to walk the streets of New York" sighs Nicholas sadly.
"I can't" stammers Kiara.
"Its too dangerous…for you and who ever is with you" adds Isis.
"I can no longer walk outside?" asks Kiara.
"Yes" replies Nicholas sadly.
"But…what about work…my family!" gasps Kiara.
"You should be safe at the office…as long as you enter in the cover of darkness…as for leaving for lunch with Miranda or anyone else…no…you'll either have to bring in something or have some ordered in…and for leaving at night…you'll have to wait for dark as well…wherever Erik has you hidden will have to remain with Erik…the rest of us cannot know nor be told where you are staying" replies Nicholas.
"I…I don't believe this" cries Kiara.
"I'm sorry my dear…but that is the sacrifice that you must make if you wish to be free from this man" sighs Nicholas.
"He'll never stop…he'll never stop hunting me down…and hurting the people I care about" cries Kiara.
"He will be stopped…but it will take time…until that time you will have to gain better patience and restraints until that golden day arrives" answers Nicholas.
"Nicholas…you better go now…the temperatures have already dropped almost to the single digits" interrupts Isis at seeing the outside temperature flash from a nearby sign.
"Fine…keep an eye on Kiara…and don't let her out of your sites…you might want to tell the hospital security about this too" offers Nicholas as he slips his jacket back on.
"Don't worry about us…just go and find our Erik" smiles Kiara.
"I will…I'll call once I find him" smiles Nicholas.
With a tip of his hat; Nicholas spins and disappears out into the lighted hallway.
"Find him…please lord…help him find the man I love" prays Kiara.
An hour later Nicholas finally arrives at the place where the police and ambulance had found both Miranda's and Roger; paying the taxi driver, Nicholas turns and steps up to the lines of police tape. Kneeling down, Nicholas's eyes drink in the splatters of dried blood still staining the sidewalk where, he could only guess was the spot where Miranda was laying.
"My god" gulps Nicholas.
Remembering why he had returned to such a gruesome site, Nicholas rises back to his feet as his eyes sweeps across the vacant sidewalk and alleys encased in billowing darkness.
"Where the hell are you Erik" breathes Nicholas.
Feeling a cold chill run up his spine, Nicholas pulls on the lapel of his jacket to cover his neck. As he does, his eyes gaze quickly into the alley in front of him. Freezing in place at the sight of someone or something laying half buried within the alley; Nicholas painfully swallows against the hard lump forming within his throat at the dreaded thought of the object being either Erik, or one of the men still waiting for Kiara to return. Knowing he cannot live with the fact that he didn't check it out first, Nicholas bravely swallows hard against the fears rising within his old body. Taking the steps needed, Nicholas stands at the entrance to the alley.
Once his eyes adjust to the darkness does Nicholas finally step into the icy cold surroundings of this threatening area. Nicholas's eyes continue to stare at the black mass lying on the ground a few feet in front of him as his thick fingers trail against the brick wall.
Feeling something wet and sticky brush against his wandering fingers prompts Nicholas to stop and slowly bring his hand up to his face. With the help of the full moon, Nicholas's eyes widen in horror at the crimson blood staining his fingers.
"Oh dear god" cries Nicholas, as the fear that this may be Erik's blood flashes within his mind.
Quickening his pace, one thought continues to crash against Nicholas's mind. 'Please lord please let this be Erik…let him be alright'
Falling to his knees, Nicholas's eyes scan the dark mass lying before him. Needing to make sure of who, or what this is, Nicholas slowly reaches his trembling fingers out to the strange object. Feeling the soft silk of shirt brush against his fingers sends ripples of fear to rise within his mind and body. Trailing his fingers up to where the person's face is, Nicholas gasps at the feel of the blood soaked and cracked and cold porcelain being pressed against his fingers.
"Erik…oh my god Erik!" screams Nicholas.
Hope you all enjoyed this chapter. And, to explain about the beating, yes, people who experience this kind of trauma usually pass out by now, but, there are some who have the strength and resilience to being able to force themselves from going unconscious. Erik is one of them, he is a very stubborn person and he is fighting for his life, therefore, he would fight very hard to not to pass out from the beating, and, somewhat of an advantage was the beatings he endured as a child helped to boost his stamina. Again this is fiction, so anything can happen. Please review if you get a chance and please be kind. Good criticism is great, but to be nasty isn't. Thank you all for your patience with the chapters and a special thank you to all of the readers who have stayed with this story. It has been a pleasure writing this story for you all to enjoy. Thank you again. Next chapter will be up soon.