Categories > Original > Horror > The Quiet Ones III: War for the Dark Territory


by Togot 0 reviews

Jeffery welcomes the newcomers to the Dark Territory and explains the rules. Let the games begin.

Category: Horror - Rating: R - Genres: Fantasy,Horror,Sci-fi - Warnings: [V] [X] [R] - Published: 2008-09-01 - Updated: 2008-09-01 - 4106 words

-Ace opened his eyes for the second time that day to again find himself in new surroundings. As he picked himself up, he promised himself that this was the last time he did ambrosia. He regretted that he had already killed Bosk. He looked around and found that he was indoors. His companions had been lain out next to him on a stone floor. He was surprised to see the wound in Rooster’s chest healed and that he was breathing. The walls were also made of stone, large square blocks like a medieval dungeon might have. There were chains and hooks hanging from the ceiling, and dark liquid dripped into several small pools scattered across the floor. Ace could see three doors: a set of large double doors at the far end of the room appeared to be the main entrance, a clear grated door led out onto a veranda of some sort which told Ace that he wasn’t on the ground level, and there was also a small single door on the wall opposite the veranda at the back of the room. Just in front of that door, in the center of the room, sat a stone throne that was a slightly lighter shade than the floor. There was a man sitting on the throne watching Ace with very steady eyes.

-“Who the fuck are you,” Ace asked. He put on his best ‘don’t fuck with me’ look, but it only seemed to amuse the man.

-“Let’s save introductions for when your companions awaken, shall we,” the man said. His tone was overly pleasant. The kind of voice a school principal uses to hide their condescension when talking to an insolent child. Ace stood up and looked the man over. He was wearing some elaborate black armor that looked like muscle without the skin. There were spikes on the shoulders and on his knees as well. His hair was shabby brown, and his face looked younger than his eyes did. He couldn’t have been older than twenty five, just a kid.

-“I’m out’a here,” Ace said. He turned away and headed for the big double doors on the opposite end of the room from the throne.

-“I wouldn’t do that if I were you,” the man said. Ace clenched his fists. He could practically see the guy waving his finger at him with a smirk on his face. If anything, Ace wanted to leave just to spite the guy. He walked to the large doors and pushed them open, and froze. A white wolf the size of a car was laying on the other side of the door in a hallway that looked like it had been made to accommodate the animal’s size. It lifted its head and turned to stare at Ace with predatory eyes. Its lips curled to reveal teeth larger than Ace’s hand, and a deep growl escaped its throat.

-Ace slowly closed the doors and turned back to find the man still sitting on his throne, smiling pleasantly. Ace glanced at the door leading to the balcony and back to the man again. The man’s smile widened as if he knew what Ace was thinking, and knew it wouldn’t work. Ace had had enough of these games; he went to the source. He walked across the room to the man on the throne. He wasn’t afraid of some punk kid with a cocky attitude. He walked up the small incline at the base of the throne and stood over the man, but the guy didn’t seem intimidated in the least. He tilted his head to the side, still giving Ace that friendly smile.

-“If you don’t tell me what’s going on right now I’m going to knock your fucking teeth out,” Ace said. “You got that you little punk?” He put as much anger and threat into his voice as he could manage without sounding frightened. The smile slowly slid off of the man’s face, and his pupils dilated until his eyes looked full black.

-“I don’t like repeating myself,” he said. “Now sit down, and be patient.” He spoke in a very even voice, and Ace could practically taste the anger that was just below the surface. He realized that the man was dangerous in the same way those women had been dangerous. Ace had underestimated them, and he wasn’t going to make the same mistake twice. He stepped back and turned to see a chair that hadn’t been there before sitting between Rooster and Ruckus. He turned to look at the man on the throne and found his face back to its pleasant smile. Ace sat in the chair, and the two of them waited in silence for the others to wake up.

-While they waited, a strange creature emerged from behind the man’s throne. Ace’s eyes widened as he got a good look at the thing. It looked like a cross between a giant ground hog and a bulldog from hell. It was about four feet tall standing on short hind legs and large clawed feet. Its body was matted with mangy brown fur, but the most disturbing feature was its head which was almost as large as its body. It’s head looked like a white skull with two small horns curving backward. It had no ears, and two red, unblinking eyes that stared at Ace. Its large mouth was open, revealing very large teeth and an oversized tongue that hung stupidly from its mouth. Thick drool fell from the tip of its tongue to the ground in large globs. It rubbed up against the man’s leg, and the man reached down and scratched the top of the beast’s head with one finger. The monster leaned into it like a cat, making a very throaty growl of joy.

-Ace just stared at the thing until the man tired of petting it. He gave a small wave of his hand, and the monster returned to the back of the throne, out of sight again. The man looked at the expression on Ace’s face and smiled. “Don’t mind Chaos. He gets lonely sometimes.” Ace had no reply. He looked around the room, wondering how many more demons were hiding just out of sight. He hoped that his gang woke up before any more strange monsters showed up. He didn’t want to have to fight them on his own.

-Ruckus was the first one to wake up. He grunted and groaned as he picked himself up on all fours. He shook he head to clear it and popped his neck side to side. He looked up at Ace sitting on his chair and gave him a look as if to ask what was going on. Ace answered with a flick of his eyes and a nod of his head in the direction of the throne. Ruckus looked at the man sitting there and asked, “Who the hell are you?”

-The man smiled and looked at Ace. “Dejavu. Would you please explain the situation to your friend?” Ace gave a quick review of what was going on as Ruckus stood up. A chair grew out of the ground next to Ace’s, and the man on the throne gave an inviting gesture for Ruckus to sit down. He didn’t accept until Ace gave him a nod indicating it was alright. The same scenario played out with Rooster and Feral. Pyro was the only one who didn’t say anything when he came to. When they were all seated, the man spoke.

-“My name is Jeffery, though most people around here refer to me as the Dark Lord, or Master. To sum things up, you five are in a coma, and this is my world where I am god. In my world, you have the power to bend reality to your will. I’m going to give you a few months to learn how to use this power, and then I am going to come and kill you all.” He said the last part as casually as most people spoke about the weather. Ace and his people all looked at each other. They didn’t like, and didn’t believe what they were hearing.

-“I don’t know what you’re smoking, but I want some,” Rooster said with a laugh.

-“I assure you everything I have just told you is true,” Jeffery said, his pleasant smile unwavering.

-“So what’s stopping us from kicking your ass right here and now?” Ruckus asked as he cracked his knuckles threateningly.

-Jeffery’s smile widened, but it was no longer friendly. “you’re welcome to try,” he said. “But I thought getting your asses handed to you by a bunch of girls would humble you a bit.”

-Ruckus’s eyes widened with rage. He rushed Jeffery’s throne, hands balled into fists. Jeffery remained seated and unflinching until Ruckus was two steps away. Jeffery’s eyes narrowed, and the ground liquefied under Ruckus’s feet. The large man sank into it like quicksand, and tentacles shot up to ensnare his arms and neck. Ruckus fought against his restraints to no avail. He glared at Jeffery and screamed, “You fucking coward!”

-Jeffery stood from his thrown and took the two steps that separated Ruckus from himself. He looked down at the man embedded in the floor up to his waist. Jeffery made a small hand gesture, and the tendrils raised Ruckus up to eye level. Jeffery came close and said, “I’m a lot of things. Coward isn’t one of them.” He raised his hand in front of Ruckus’s face, and flicked one finger into the large man’s forehead. Ruckus was thrown back with such force that the tendrils which had held him were ripped off. He flew across the room and slammed into the large double doors with enough force to shake the walls. Ruckus slid down to the ground, the wooden door had a smashed in dent where his head had hit. Ace and the others all stared at their large companion with shock written all over their faces. That expression quickly turned to anger as they turned to face Jeffery.

-The friendly expression slid from Jeffery’s face again, replaced by a cold, condescending look. What little light there was in the room seemed to retreat, and the room itself appeared to close in, as if some incredible force were crushing the walls inward. Ace and the others even heard deep creaking and felt immense pressure. Ace realized what he was feeling was Jeffery’s power. It was like he was flexing an invisible muscle to unnerve them. It was working.

-Jeffery’s expression relaxed, and the room returned to normal. The light returned, the pressure subsided, and the walls expanded again. “Now,” Jeffery said, “If we’re all done with the posturing, do any of you have any questions?”

-“Uh…yeah?” Rooster said. His voice was shaky and frightened now. It was beginning to sink in that this was no drug trip. “If you’re going to kill us, why are you going to wait for us to use these super powers of ours?”

-Jeffery smiled. “Good question. The answer is simple: I’m bored. Aside from yourselves and one other, everything in this world is an extension of my mind. As such, they pose no real challenge to me. I could kill you now, and it would be like stepping on ants, but, despite what your unconscious friend said, I am no coward. I want you all at your very best when I fight you. I want you to make me work for it. I’m going to give you every chance in the world to beat me, so that I may feel alive again. Six months from now, I want you to use all the power you’ve got, AND TRY TO KILL ME!” Ace and the others looked him in stunned silence. Jeffery had a psychotic grin on his face. It turned back to a friendly smile startlingly fast and he asked, “Any other questions?”

-“Yeah,” Ace said. “Are you fucking crazy?”

-Roster looked from Ace, to Ruckus, and then to Jeffery. Jeffery smiled pleasantly and said, “Seeing as how this world is a reflection of my state of mind, I would have to say, yes.” Feral and Rooster gave each other the kind of looks people give when they are afraid to say what they are thinking. Ace watched Jeffery closely, anger building in his eyes. He didn’t like how cocky Jeffery was. He didn’t care how strong or unstoppable he might be. Jeffery just smiled and said, “Any other questions?”

-“I have one,” Feral said, trying hard to sound brave. “You say we have these super powers. How are we supposed to use them?”

-Jeffery seemed to consider her for a moment before answering. “I must say I’m pleased at how well this is going. Normally people waste so much time pleading and begging and denying what is happening, but you guys are straight to the point; I like that. To answer your question, why not ask your bald buddy?” Ace, Rooster, and Feral all turned to look at Pyro. He sat quietly, watching Jeffery intently. He slowly turned to look at his companions. His expression betrayed nothing. He didn’t seem bothered at all by what was going on. He slowly turned his attention back to Jeffery who was now returning the gaze. “I must say that no one has ever learned how to control their powers as quickly as you, other than myself of course.” Jeffery looked at Pyro as if sizing him up. “Do you understand how you did it?”

-Pyro stared at Jeffery unflinchingly for several seconds. “Dunno,” he said with a casual shrug.

-Jeffery seemed to think over that for a moment. “Very well then, I’ll give you three months. After that time I’ll send my girls to play with you again, check on your progress. If you still can’t hold your ground against them, I’ll create and instructor for you. If that doesn’t work, well.” Jeffery looked at Feral and smiled. “I’ll rape you to death, and let my demons do the same to your friends.” His smile widened at the horrified expressions on their faces. “Now, I believe that covers everything. Raven will escort you out and give you the final details. Oh, and don’t forget your friend.” Jeffery walked away from them and returned to his throne.

-The side door behind the throne creaked open, and a woman with short black hair stepped halfway through it. She stared at the group with lazy eyes, as if the whole thing were some tired routine. “This way,” she said in a soft voice that was almost a whisper. Rooster and Feral looked at Ace. He nodded his head, and they got up from their chairs to leave. Rooster managed to wake Ruckus up enough for him to get to his feet. Ace led the way to the door. He gave one final look back at Jeffery. He was sitting on his throne, eyes closed, totally unconcerned about any of them. Ace was tempted to attack him, to make him pay for ignoring him like he was some harmless lowlife, but he knew that to Jeffery, that was exactly what he was. Ace swallowed his pride and promised himself that he would make Jeffery regret taking him and his people so lightly.

-Raven led them down a spiral staircase deeper and deeper into the castle. Ace wondered how high up they really were. Raven didn’t say a word to them, and none of Ace’s crew wanted to break the silence. That’s not to say that there was no sound. Everywhere they went they heard and saw unearthly creatures running into shadows and peering out of the darkness. As they walked, Ace realized there was no source to the light in the stairwell. There were no torches or lamps, nothing.

-They came to a door, and Raven opened it and walked through without turning to see if the others followed. Ace didn’t want to be running around this living nightmare without a guide. He followed her. They moved through some kind of dungeon. Cells lined both sides of the hallway, and inside each cell was a horror show. Ace saw a man chained face down on an inclined table with all the skin removed from his back. The guy was still alive and moaning as the blood slowly dripped down the edges of the wound. Another room had a woman with her hands tied behind her back and a pole as thick as Ace’s arm shoved up into her vagina which came out her mouth, forcing her face skyward. Somehow, the woman was still alive with a look of agony on her face and semidried tears streaking from the corners of her eyes to her ears. A dark trail of blood covered the length of the pole she was impaled on.

-“Jesus, this guy is one sick fuck,” Rooster said in a hushed voice.

-“Actually, this is my handy work,” Raven said. Ace and the others stopped dead in their tracks. They looked at the woman in front of them with shocked expressions. She stopped and turned to look back at them. Raven seemed so harmless compared to everything else they had seen. Even dressed in black, the look on her face was almost shy. She smiled at them, as if she knew what they were thinking and said, “I get bored to.”

-She turned away and continued walking. Ace didn’t want to follow her, but not doing so would be admitting he was afraid of her. His ego and pride fought against the revulsion he felt over what he had seen. He had done a lot of horrible things in his life, but this was twisted on a level that truly disturbed him. Eventually his ego won out, and he followed after Raven. He kept his eyes straight ahead as he walked, not looking into the cells. Even though he wasn’t looking, Ace could still hear the moans and cries of those around him. Some part of him wanted to look. It was like the morbid compulsion to stare at a car wreck. He was almost to the door when he finally gave in and stole a glance into the last cell before the door. He regretted it instantly.

-There was a man hanging from the ceiling by his own intestines. His stomach had been cut open and was now a gapping hole. A length of small intestine had been looped around his neck and swung over a bar that ran along the top of the cell. Even now he was struggling against it, kicking his feet helplessly in the air, clawing at the slippery cord crushing his throat. The rest of his entrails were on the ground being eaten by large insects that didn’t look like any kind of bug Ace could recognize. The man’s bulging eyes looked out at Ace, pleading for help.

-Ace wasn’t in the habit of helping strangers, but he had to ask. “What exactly did these people do to piss you off so much?”

Raven turned to him and frowned. “Do?” she asked. “They didn’t do anything, and I’m not angry with any of them.” She walked closer to Ace, and he wanted very badly to back away from her. If she could be this casually brutal to people the she wasn‘t even angry with, he didn’t want to be anywhere near her, but he didn’t want her to know it. She looked him in the eye, and then turned to the eviscerated man in the cell. “These aren’t actually people. They are figments of Jeffery’s imagination. If they were real, I couldn’t do this.”

-Raven gave a lazy wave of her hand, and the section of intestine holding the man up snapped. He fell to the ground and landed on his feet, standing firm as if he felt no pain. He didn’t scream, and his face was totally blank. Ace watched as the hole in the man’s stomach grew teeth around its edge, and his intestines began moving on their own like tentacles. They grew hooks along their length and lashed out at the bars of the cell. The man’s eyes began to glow red and he had a disturbing grin on his face , revealing pointy teeth. He let out a monstrous roar that sent a shiver up Ace’s spine.

-“He’s just a figment of the mind,” Rave explained. “He’s just a decoration, an art project. Don’t waste pity on it.” She turned and walked on without another word.

-Ace stared at the monster which had been a man in agony moments before. He remembered Jeffery saying that there was one other real person in this world. He realized that it must be Raven. He also remembered that Jeffery said he and his people all had the same power. He looked at the monster and felt no pity or fear. What he felt was the hunger for that power, and the beginnings of a plan. A smile crept up the corner of his mouth as he turned to follow Raven.

-Raven led them down to some kind of indoor dock which led out to an ocean. The water came into the castle in a horseshoe, and there was a small island in the middle of it. Raven walked to the edge of the dock, and a bridge grew out of the ground from where she was standing to the island several feet away. Raven turned to face them and said, “This will take you to the other continent where you can prepare and train yourselves to use your power. Some advice, keep in mind that nothing here is real other than your will. Nothing is impossible so long as your resolve does not waiver.”

-Ace’s crew crossed the bridge, but he hesitated. He turned to Raven and asked, “Why hasn’t he tried to kill you?”

-Raven smiled. “Because he loves me, and I love him. I’ve been here since the beginning, before we even realized that this was a dream world. We had so much fun back then.” Raven got a faraway look in her eyes that told Ace she was reliving nostalgic memories. Ace saw his chance, and he went for it. He threw a punch at Raven’s face with everything he had. His fist connected with her left cheek, but it didn’t even turn her head. His hand felt like it had just hit a brick wall. Raven’s eyes came back to the present, and she didn’t look happy at all. She narrowed her eyes, and an invisible force slammed into Ace and sent him flying.

-He landed on the island, slamming into ruckus and Rooster who both tried to catch him. Ace quickly got to his feet, rage written all over his face. He wanted to charge back over the bridge and take another shot, but the bridge vanished. It didn’t retract or fall apart. It just disappeared. The island shook, and a massive head rose out of the water to loom over Ace and his people. The head turned around, and a face as large as a house stared down at them. The thing looked at them for a moment with large, unblinking eyes and then turned away to look out to the sea. The island began to move, following the head, and Ace realized they weren’t on an island; they were on the thing’s back.

-Ace turned back to glare at Raven. She was already walking away, dismissing them as carelessly as Jeffery had done. Ace was gritting his teeth trying to bite back his anger. He didn’t care how strong they were. No one disrespected him like this. He promised himself that he would not waste the time that Jeffery had given him. Ace would make him pay for his arrogance, and afterwards, Ace would make this fucked up world his own little funhouse.
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