Disclaimer - Don't own anyone. All copyrights belong to others. Sad, isn't it? Also, I wrote the following in italics, to imply thought, rather than verbal or written first person narrative.Rated for language and mild disturbing word pictures.
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In as many days that I have been here, I've tried to escape. Like today, for example. And, if not for the rat, I would have succeeded, too. If I had had only one more minute, or even thirty seconds, I would be free right now, but I'm not. I failed - again!
The drug has worn off, so I can finally sit up, although I'm still a little numb. I think they've tied the binds around my ankles too tight, but if I work at it, I can loosen them, just as I did during the night. Yet, I think they're going to be more careful from now on, so I'm going to have to either work faster or take longer, so that they don't notice any difference in the rope.
Yet, if I were honest about it… they've impressd me. If not for my own skills, I wouldn't be able to appreciate how they've kept me prisoner for so long. And it has been a long imprisonment. How long, I really don't know, since they've denied me a calendar. Where I am far below the surface of New York City, I can't count the sunsets, either, so the length of my detention remains a mystery to me.
Nevertheless, it takes some serious skills to keep me here imprisoned, that's for sure.
But today, I was this close to freedom. If the rat hadn't come down to my cell to visit with me (probably to bore me with another of his stupid one-way conversations), I would already be out of here…and they would be dead.
And he loves to talk, too. Why can't he just shut up? I'm so tired of hearing him drone on and on and on…it makes me all buzzy in the head, like a hive filled with angry bees. Why would anything he says interest me? I get so tired of hearing his voice, hearing about his precepts on life, on ninjitsu, on…me. I just want to kill him…with something sharp.
Yes, I can see myself stabbing him over and over again. I can see him lying in his own blood, eyes fixed and dilated, his voice silent in death!
Then, there's his cane. The tap, tap, tapping against the concrete floor whenever he comes visiting nearly drives me mad. I can hear it long before I see him and let me tell you, I'd like to shove that cane where the sun don't shine.
But as I said, I came very close to escaping today. I had worked all night on my leg bindings, stressing the rope until it stretched enough so I could slip my leg from its embrace. The moment I heard the tapping of the rat's approach, I tucked my legs behind me, just enough to hide the fact that they were free, and then I pretended to sleep, facing the cell door.
Oh, I know he knows when I'm faking, but it's always fun to test him.
Nevertheless, this morning he had cued in on my resting state, and not what I was hiding from him. Had he known what I was planning, I don't think he would have come into my cell. I realized not long ago that he trusts my shackles too much, trusts my feigned attention I've paid him these past few days - or has it been weeks? I really don't know, but in that moment, I thought for sure my patience had finally paid off.
It wasn't until he was well inside the cell - with the door wide opened - that he came too close to me and then, in that moment between ignorance and realization, he knew. By the time he had a dart in his hand, I had leapt up from my position from the floor. Oh, I cheered to myself with how fast I was, but then damned fate as I saw him react, as well.
He may be old, but I have to credit him his quick response.
Limited in movement as I was and before the rat had a chance to shoot, I kicked at him, knocking the dart aside…and breaking his arm in the process! I must have, because he cried out in pain! I couldn't help but laugh, too.
Nevertheless, despite his useless arm, he still had enough presence of mind to exit the cell quickly and shut the door behind him. If it hadn't been the automatic locking type, the door wouldn't have stopped me, either, but I was still free of my leg restraints, so it was only a matter of time before I freed my arms, too. Then, I would work on the door.
A piece of cake, I thought! I am ninja, after all.
Then, the rat ruined it; he called for help.
Still, hearing the fear and pain in his voice was quite satisfying. God, he sounded like a keening woman. Heh…imagine that, with all his talk about being one with the environment, all his knowledge about ninjitsu, all he professes to know, and he…was afraid! Some ninja master he is. Psssh!
But, he distracted me with his cry. The way he cradled his arm made me smile, the pain-filled expression on his face, made me gloat. Yes, I'll admit to the distraction, but I guess that's forgivable. After all, I inflicted pain on the one who has pained me for years, so I should be grateful for even the smallest of victories.
After the others reached my cell, it was quite a battle to contain me again. Normally I would have whipped all of their butts, but by the time they arrived, I had only part of one arm free, in addition to my legs. Considering how long they've had me tied up, I was too weak. The exertion of leaping up from a sitting position took a lot out of me, but I fought well, even scoring a decisive blow to Red's eye. I'm sure I blinded it, too. He certainly howled as if I did, and there was enough beautiful blood pouring from his face to prove it.
Nevertheless, I'm certain that had they been late in responding, had they tarried just a tad too long in helping the rat, I would be FREE now - and they would be dead!
Timing is everything, isn't that what they say? Oh, and I'll have my time, you can count on it.
But, that's not what happened. Now, they've once again bound my legs together, this time around my thighs, at the knees, and a double helping of rope around my ankles. They aren't taking any more chances with me, I guess. The fact that I'm in another a straightjacket - this one made of metal - says much about fearing my escape.
I guess they've decided the material version was too easy for me to get out of, too easy for me to compromise, so they've put me into one made from steel. Had it not been for the drugging dart, I would have fought them off, but - damn that dart. The rat once again. He had excellent aim, too, considering his broken arm and all. With everyone else all over me, all three of his sons struggling to keep me down, the rat still darted me and without hitting one of them. A definite credit to his training, I guess.
Just the same, I should have kicked him in the head when I tried to escape. Next time I'll have to do better.
How they managed to find a metal straightjacket, though, I'll never know, but I'm sure the one who shackled me made it. He's always been rather creative like that. Either that or the girl with the red hair found it. She seems to help them a lot with their 'problem'…and I seem to be that problem.
She's on my list, too. Soon as I get out of here, I'm paying her a visit. Oh, the things I have planned for her. She tries to be nice when she comes to see me and I play along, but while I'm playing, I'm planning. I think she sensed it the last time, too, because it's been a week since I've seen her. At least, I think it's been a week. Time is irrelevent when you don't have a clock.
Just as well, I was getting tired of looking at her. No one should be that pretty and still have imperfections.
I can fix that, though. In fact, I will fix it, once I get out of here.
As for my new suit, personally, I really don't care where they got the damn jacket. It still keeps me restrained. Ever since waking up in this hellhole, all I've wanted was my freedom, and I've tried every opportunity to escape, too, but I've failed each time.
And I hate to fail…at anything!
Failure is not an option for me, never has been. For as long as I've been alive, I've strived for perfection. I've breathed it, trained for it…insisted upon it. It's only been 'here', in this underground cell where they've kept me for God knows how long, that I've found myself impotent. Maybe when I get free, I'll shackle them instead, and then torture them! Oh, the joy, it honestly makes me swoon just thinking about it!
As for my personal needs, to their credit, they take decent care of me. They make sure that I have a clean cell, enough food, enough warmth. Relieving myself as restrained as I am has to be the worst part of my dilemma, though, but at least I get to watch them clean up after me. One has to be grateful for whatever they can get, right?
Yet, despite their ministrations, I am still a prisoner, still shackled, still subdued. They could keep me in a palace, in fact, and it would still be a prison for me. I bristle, thinking about my situation, but it only gives me more reasons to think of revenge, creative ways of ridding them from this world.
Yes, one of these days…I'll have my rebuttal.
I even tried to starve myself, twice in fact, refusing to eat their food, but I found it a futile effort. As flawed as they are, they have ways of getting food into me. When they couldn't pry my mouth opened, the rat darted me. He said it was to make me easier to handle, so that they wouldn't hurt me.
Yeah, as if!
Then, after I collapsed to the concrete floor, immobile, unable to fight back, but fully aware, the one in purple inserted a tube into my mouth. Forcing one end of it down my throat, he took a funnel and poured liquefied nutrients into the other end. His two brothers and the rat watched the entire process, too, with the one in red glaring at me, while the one in orange cried.
What a wuss. Seriously, I've never seen anyone as emotional as he. Yet, all I could do was lay there and watch him.
The worse part of the whole experience was that I was fully conscious. Can you just imagine? It was the most disgracing thing to go through, having that tube pushed down my throat. If I could, I would have regurgitated the slimy mess right into his face! But, by the time the drug wore off, I didn't have much left to throw up
They will pay for humiliating me, if it's the last thing I do, I'll make sure of it!
And all through the whole, horrible ordeal, the rat kept, stroking my head, telling me that starving was wrong, and that I needed to eat. He told me that he wants me to get better, that he wants me whole again. Imagine that, as if I'm sick or something. Believe me, I'm perfectly well. He's the one who's sick. In fact, all of them are sick, sick in mind and body. They're not perfect, not like me, so they need someone to fix them.
If only I had freed myself today…I would have fixed them, I would have fixed everything.
Anyway, the rat tried to tell me that he cares! But how can that be true when he allows Purple to abuse me the way that he does, the way they all do? They must be lying; they HAVE to be lying. And that is the imperfection and I cannot tolerate imperfection! It is not how I was raised.
After experiencing that damnable tube shoved down my throat, though, and with the raw, burning pain in my esophagus that followed, I gave up on hunger strikes. Twice was enough, believe me.
In its place, I've found better and more creative ways to rebel, such describing how I will kill them. Like I did with Purple. The second and last time he interfered with my starvation tactics, I promised him that if I ever got free, I would shove both funnel and tube so far down his throat that he would gag to death.
And I will make sure that he does, too.
Then, when my threats didn't work, I tried spitting food in their face. Considering they keep both my arms and legs immobile, someone has to spoon-feed me, so they make an easy target. It was fun the first few times, their look of surprise and disgust made me laugh. I don't get much in the way of recreation, not here in my prison, so I have to do something to amuse me.
To their credit, they actually put up with it for a lot longer than I thought they would, but after a while, I guess they'd had enough. That was when they threatened me with the feeding tube, but no way will I go through that experience again, so I'm cooperating now. I hate giving up my playtime, but it only forced me to think more creatively than before.
Now, I just sit in my cell, planning my escape, passing the time by committing to memory everything they've done to me. Whenever they come to visit or feed me, I recount how they've treated me and assure them that I will get my revenge. Then, I calmly tell them how they are going to die. I amp it up each time, too, adding one more garish detail to their impending death. I also list whom else I will kill once I'm free, all because of what they did - and are doing - to me.
And I can see how heavy this weighs on them and I'm certain that that's the reason why the girl with red hair doesn't visit anymore. Maybe…they've sent her away, to keep her safe.
Well, that won't stop me; I'll find her. I'm ninja, after all.
Just recently, I managed to scare Orange so badly that he now refuses to see me anymore, other than this morning, but - that was different. Actually, that was fun! Even though my escape plans failed, the injuries I inflicted gave me something else to crow about the next time one of them visits me. I'm certain their recent pain will facilitate their fear, too. I'll tell them what I told Orange the other day, that after I kill them, I'll make it my life's ambition to rid the world of other imperfections like them.
In fact, now that I think about it, I believe that's what scared Orange off. Either that, or it was when I told him that when I do escape, I will kill him first, even said I would be nice and do it quickly. He'd never see it coming until it was too late.
The resulting look on his face told me I wouldn't be seeing him again, though, so his hiatus from visiting me these past few days hasn't been too surprising.
Of the four, I dislike him the least. That's what I told him, but I also told him my affection for him is marginal at best, because I hate all of them. I hate all of them so very much.
But, to unnerve the other three, that will be tougher, although I suspect the rat will make fewer visits, now - and Red, too. After all, between a broken arm and a missing eye, there's a lot to take care of. I've given them plenty of reasons to be afraid. I've weakened them.
Oh, my heart aches in pity.
But it seems my threat of gagging Purple to death hasn't had any effect on him. Too bad, as I would like to scare him away, as well.
In fact, he came back down a while ago, after I my most recent attempt to escape. The drug was still in affect, as far as moving about, but I could still look at him, so I did. I laid there on the floor and watched him watch me. He looked at me with his sad, chocolate-brown eyes, telling me what I did was wrong, assuring me that the others will be all right.
Too bad, I managed to say, the drug wearing off faster than previously, and as expected, he shook his head, as if reproving me. He told me he's trying to find something to help me…and I told him that I didn't need any help, that he's the one that's sick, not me, and he shook his head again. .
If I ever get out of here, I'm going to behead him, just so he can't shake it at me anymore.
As for Red. well, we'll see if he ever comes back down here again and if he does, I know it'll be with one less eye! Heh, now that I think about it, he'd look good with an eye patch. Still, he might come down and do what he said he was going to do, what he said a few days ago about putting me out of my misery. He had the nerve to tell me that, too!
Out of MY misery? Get real, he's just scared…terrified, and I smiled at him when he said that, giving him a knowing look, a look that said I knew the real reason he wants me dead. He's afraid of me. Finally, Red's afraid of me. He'd better be, because once I get out of here, I'm going to be his worst nightmare.
In fact, I'll be everyone's worst nightmare! I'll put fear into them, because fear has become my weapon lately. Fear and patience and I will use both as proficiently as any weapon I've held in hand.
One day, they won't be paying attention. One day, I'll have given them enough time to believe I've become complacent, even cooperative. I will give them exactly what they want, be the person they want me to be, a docile prisoner, resigned to his fate. If it takes days, weeks, or months, I will do it.
One day, they won't be looking, one day, they won't be expecting it and then…then, I will make my escape and on my way out, I will slit their throats, all of them!
They call me insane, they tell me I've snapped, but they are the ones who have snapped. They're the ones who have gone crazy. They have all rejected perfection and Bushido, while I am the one who has embraced it, for it is all that I know, all that I am.
Anything less than perfection has to die, right? Isn't that what horticulturists do, what farmers and ranchers practice? Don't they cull the imperfect plants and animals, to propagate the best, to leave room for the perfect?
It's so simple, really. Why can't they just understand me, understand my true purpose?
After all, I am the perfect ninja.
I am the perfect son.
I am - Hamato Leonardo!
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A/N: Yes, Leonardo has finally 'lost' it. Muahahaha! A plot bunny harvested from author Wyntir Rose' 'Tales of Don'. Thank you, WR, for allowing me to use it. For now, a one-shot.