"Jhonen... Jhonen... Hey! Jho!"
"Huh? What dad? What's up?"
"Nothing, just seeing what you were doing. What game is this one?"
"Silent Hill 2. I'm just about to beat it."
"Yeah. Yeah it's great. Really creepy."
"What's it about?"
"I played the first one, remember... the guy who's daughter goes missing and he finds out she's like this incubator for a demon-god thing..."
"Oooh yeah, and you got a chainsaw for beating it. That was cool."
"Yeah well, this one has like, nothing to do with that first one other than the same setting. I'm playing this guy, right, and his wife sends him a letter saying she's in Silent Hill, but that's impossible because she's dead, but he goes to the town to find her anyway and he finds this other girl who looks just like his dead wife, but then she's died like three times and come back each time."
"Is that her?"
"Yeah, Maria. And his wife's name is Mary... she's kind of a skank. Maria, i mean. not his wife."
"Hey, don't knock skanks. They serve a valuable role in society. The entire adult film industry would crumble without th-"
"Oh my God..."
"It's... he did it. I said his wife was dead earlier. it just said she really is dead. She had a terminal disease and he mercy killed her. That's... that's ridiculous. Jesus that's so stupid. How could he not remember?"
"I dunno Jhonen... it's pretty poignant if you ask me. Kind of romantic in it's own twisted way. She was dieing, he put her out of his misery, and he couldn't live with the guilt so he erased the murder from his own mind and I guess this Silent Hill town made it it's duty to make him remember, to make him face his crime and deal with it."
"Yeah but real people don't do shit like that."
"You'd be suprised what a person's mind will do to deal with trauma... you'd be suprised."
"STOP! Killer! Stop! Police!"
Grendel would not stop. There was no stopping Grendel. Protect Lilli. Protect Lilli at all cost. This was his duty. Like Prime protecting the boy-Khan, or Hunter protecting Stacy Palimbo, so the Gypsy Grendel must protect Lilli. There was no desire there, no lust fueling his drive. Lilli was something precious to Grendel. She was something priceless. To him, she was not even a person, for people were flawed and filthy and filled with vile fluids and intent. Lilli was an ideal. To let Lilli come to harm's way was to threaten innocence, hope, and optimism. She was the silver lining hiding behind every dark cloud.
Would but he could strike down the corrupt Khan that was his master. To even consider such things was blasphemy, but his blood boiled with the thought of Jeriko, the false devil. Still, he had his oath, and his oath would not be broken. He would protect Jeriko and those under Jeriko's roof. The rest though, those note of the Gypsy King's family were free game. The Grendel longed for the day he would find Brigette alone. She was already baited. She believed him under her control because he gave in to what she believed was lust. The Grendel has no use for sex as anything but a weapon. For the female, sex was used for both vengence and a leveler of the playing field. He wielded it like a blunt object. With Gette it had been more like a mask. She would forever see The Grendel and assume his next intentions were to get into her pants. Such perceptions would only improve the chances of success when finally he struck.
Lilli had to worry about no such threat from Grendel, and frankly, the fact that Jhonen was attempting to consort with her in such a way disgusted him. He considered cutting off his own penis, but such an act would hamper his ability to protect the gypsy girl... another time perhaps.
It wasn't enough to retrieve the bag... which he did. He left the shop keeper laying behind her own table. the thatch roof of the booth she worked out of was pierced clean and quick and though there were a couple of witnesses to him climbing from roof to roof, crawling amongst the scorpians and spiders that sunned themselves upon the moist thatch roofs.
at the belly dancer shop, a slender blade found itself protruded through that roof and the kind woman who had so generously allowed Lilli to change in the back felt nothing as the tip of the blade jabbed easily through the top of her skull and into her brain pan. her mouth opened and she fell, immediately seizing behind her own counter. Grendel himself fell through the roof, intentionally so, directly into the small changing area Lilli had been in before. He could still smell that faint scent when he scooped up the backpack and slipped out the back of the shack.
The blood upon the blade didn't show when wiped off upon his black pants. It was slipped smoothly back into it's sheath as Grendel moved into the crowd. He was in search of the final witness and it was with the assistance of a pair of British sounding Indians that he would find him. He asked politely, as Grendel was inclined to do, where one might find the nearest clinic. This was met with a round of laughter from the dark skinned, refined sounding gents.
"clinic is a very loose term around here, my boy. Perhaps the apothicary can be of assistance. Please, take note of the drawing of a tincture atop that building there. Within those walls you will find a cure for what ails you."
It was with a smile and a nod that Grendel bid the men a good day before proceeding through the throngs of smelly sweaty, fly swarmed men and women. The apothicary was a maker of home remedies, as well as a store where more simple mass produced items could be purchased, such as tylenol, pepto, and other plastic wrapped products. these were far from being best selling items though, as the more holistic minded Indians prefered the natural remedies provided by the local healer.
Grendel had to push his way through the throngs of people gathered out front. It seemed the tide of pedestrians was never ending now that the rain had ceased. They didn't even seem to have any destination in mind. They merely invaded the streets and conversed amongst the wares of the street vendors. He made his way around the side of the building and even Grendel had to marvel at the offensiveness of the smells that assaulted him. Corpses of all variety of animal, many of them picked clean of meat, litered the alleyway in as much abundance as the poverty striken people that sought the alleyways shade.
Grendel swatted at his face as the swarm of flies bit at his muted nose. He looked at none of the hands that reached for him, his eyes upon the building alone. It was around the back that he found another entrance, this one free of a door. He stepped inside without being noticed. It seemed that while the store front worked as an apothicary, the back of the store, where he had entered, was a make shift clinic. People sat behind cloth dividers, the tapestries bareing a dingy yellow tint as the natural light filtered through the high set windows. He could see outlines of people; children, geezers, and adults alike. The whimpering sobs of the infected acted like a chorus as they joined all around him, though it was a grown man's yelp of pain that drew the Assassin. He could pick up snippets of conversation. "Face" and "broken" graced his ears . He stopped at the source of the sound and watched as two men spoke back and forth, one setting the other's broken finger and applying a splint. He could see their shadows against the white cloth, his own form invisible to both doctor and patient.
The entire place smelled of infection. It was that sour sweet smell of maggots and decay baking in an increasingly hot sun. When he breathed, he could almost see the humidity pushed away from his face, then engulfing him again. It was upon the intake of the cloying moist air that he lunged; a blade in each hand cutting through shadows. He didn't even need to step through. he had half a length of each arm through the cloth dividers when he felt the tips sinking into flesh. He watched as the shadows stiffened then, with the withdrawl of his blades, fell. He wiped both blades clean upon his black cotton pants, then sheathed them against his back beneath the pack he'd recovered for Lilli.
"how did i get here..." jhonen asked himself. He was standing outside of the hotel he and Lilli were staying at, but his confusion was not immediately limited to the building. the world around him seemed alien. he looked up and down the street, staring at the sun burnt, fly swarmed masses shambling back and forth. he heard the drone of chanting, rolling like some air raid siren, louder, then softer, then louder again. His hand touched the leg of his pants, and upon finding his fingers covered in blood, he immediately searched himself for a wound... and cursed Grendel when he realized the blood was not his own. It came back to him then, everything; the plane ride, the night with Lilli, the day with Lilli, but his memories went blurry at the point that he'd broken the man's finger. he didn't try and break beyond that mental barrier. it physically hurt him when he tried. nausia rushed over him in a wave when he tried to see what he wasn't meant to witness so he didn't even try. he found a basin to wash his hands in, then mounted the stairs to ascend to the room he and Lilli were sharing while their host lay in a bed of dirt somewhere else.