Who Cages Death?

CW: Violence, blood

Klaxons blared, lights flashed, Sophia’s cell door slid open.

Out on the cat walks lining the rows of cells, people milled, then the fighting started, and the screams. Sophia threw back her head and laughed.

Something, they’d released something, the so-called scientists in this hell-hole they called a research facility.  Or antagonized it. Something big enough they couldn’t contain it with all their technology and sanitized thaumaturgy.

She turned her head side to side, popping her neck, and stood up.

A man, big, no neck to speak of, head sloping from ears straight to massive shoulders, with mean little eyes shadowed by massive brows, blocked the door of her cell. He had no visible hair, perhaps the “scientists” had burned it off.

He didn’t matter, none of them did.

“You and me are gonna have some fun,” the man told her taking a swaggering step toward her. He towered over her scant four foot eleven inches.

Sophia clapped her hands in front of her, and when they parted, each held a long, wicked-looking curved blade so black it pulled the light and mortal eyes toward it.

Three steps, two cuts, and the nameless man lay bleeding out on the floor of her cell, twitching, gurgling, and clutching at the internal organs spilling from his gut.  Blood pumped from the slit in his throat.  In the flashing red light, it flowed black across the polished concrete.  She crouched down to sniff at it and recoiled.  Foul, tainted, bad.

She shook her head like a dog with a nose full of cinnamon or some other spice, and stood up.  Stepping over him, still holding the blades, she left the cell.

“Damn, it is good to be a gangster!”  Her clipped pronunciation and odd accent made the slang sound odd even to her ears.  She smiled and started stalking along the catwalk.  The smart ones, who listened to their instinctive fear, stepped back to allow her to pass, no matter who or what they fought.

If they bowed, she slashed the throats of their adversaries, blades flicking out almost too fast to see, bringing a gout of red-black blood.  If they bowed, she allowed them to follow her, as she moved inexorably toward the main doors and a world she’d missed for far too long.

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