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Pieces Moving Into Place – July 25

Archivist note: This post is from an older recovered archive.

==Initial Post==

((Posted by Scottie Melnik on July 25, 2010))

I was looking a totally different girl now. The light in the room almost seemed to dim as Bianca’s entire demeanor shifted radically. Gone was her pleasant smile, the delightful twinkle in her eye, and the upbeat attitude that seemed to carry everyone around her. Instead all of this was replaced by that infernal smirk, a predatory glare and a darkness that seemed to swallow anyone near whole.

I had seen her mood swing but if someone had told me that a person could make such a transition so abruptly I would hardly have believed it. Something else that had caught me off guard with the radical change was the fact that this woman didn’t seem to remember anything that had just happened. I played along by stating that I had just arrived when something about all of this clicked with me. These symptoms sounded familiar but unfortunately I couldn’t quite place them yet. She asked another question and I tucked the information away to digest later.

Looking at the letter opener I still held she smiled and her eyes flickered, “I thought we played that game. You didn’t seem to enjoy it then… Or was it because I had the letter opener?”

I dropped my gaze momentarily to the steel letter opener, the only weapon available if she happened to have the dagger I had known her to carry. I had been drawn in by a disarmingly sweet girl and now the animal was out. Her game had begun and I was at a clear disadvantage. I darted my eyes back to hers and simply frowned, replying, “Having a letter opener to my thigh is not my idea of a good time.”

She laughed a bit at this, shaking her head and crossing her arms, “But having it to mine does?”

I shook my head and rolled my eyes, “I’ve never held any sharp instruments to you.”

She just glared me down, “Pity… Mr. Melnik, you’re a lot darker than your friends know, aren’t you.” That wasn’t a question, but a statement. She was confident she was right and the fact was that she was right.

The next move was mine and I had to think quickly. I needed information from her. I needed to know what had caused this and what her motivation was. I had come to the realization some time ago that she wanted to see darkness in me, something that she and very few people had ever seen, but I didn’t know why. It was a dangerous path if I chose to walk it, for both her and me. But perhaps that was the key to all of this. Perhaps if we walked it together I could bring her back. Or maybe one or both of us would wind up dead. It was a risk, but one I was willing to take.

I dropped my gaze to the letter opener and I smiled softly. I lifted my eyes to hers and stepped closer to the counter that divided us, leaning towards her and pointing the sharp tip of the letter opener in her direction. Holding it in my right hand I ran my thumb over the edge of the blade. It was much sharper than a letter opener should be. Had that been her doing?

“Darker? Perhaps… And it excites you? A weapon pressed against you? Knowing at any moment it could slip and…” I chuckled harshly, “…slice you wide open? Is that what makes you hot and bothered, Bianca?” I felt dirty saying those words but I didn’t hesitate jumping into the muck with her. I was already knee deep and it was about to get deeper.

She smirked at me and dropped her hand behind the reception desk, producing a small, ordinary dagger that I had felt be never actually seen before. I took a step back, putting a little distance between us. “Oh no… not me, Mr. Melnik… not me…” she said in a frigid, calculating voice that trailed off. Suddenly she leapt onto the desk with a speed and agility I had never seen of her. I took yet another step back and looked up at her as she raised the dagger over her head, the menacing look in her eyes and her crouched position showing she was ready to strike.

My heart pounded in my chest and adrenaline flowed through my veins. I gripped the little letter opener tighter in my fist and knew without a doubt that I would use it if I had to. She was a danger to everyone around her and I could see that quite clearly now. The fact was I had always known but simply refused to believe it. That delusion dropped like a veil before my eyes and I knew that whoever this person was wearing Bianca Namori’s skin was a threat. I grew angry as I resented her for putting me in this position; a position I had put myself into, in all fairness.

I kept my eyes on her and backed away slowly from the desk, holding the letter opener out in front of me. Once again it was my move. “You like to see the blood flow from others? Is that it? That’s what you wish to see?” came from me in a throaty growl.

“My my, you are a smart man…” she said sarcastically. She then stood straight up and smiled down at me with a grin dripping with venom. “You say you can handle your sword well, no?” and she brought the dagger down from prone attack position and brought it to her lips, licking the blade playfully. Her eyes narrowing on me she whispered darkly, “Prove it…” and then sprung from the counter.

To anyone who may read this: Have you ever been in a very dangerous situation where things are happening so quickly and yet time seems to slow? I’m sure there’s a word for it, and if not there ought to be, but that’s what happened to me right then. She crouched and then leapt. As soon as I saw the dagger being drawn back everything slowed. I watched as her face contorted into something almost feral in nature and yet her eyes twinkled with what looked like triumph. The blade gleamed malevolently in her right hand as she swung it in a wide backhanded arc before her, my throat the object of her aim.

I pulled back just in time to feel the rush of the air slicing along the blade, narrowly missing my flesh by mere inches, if I had to guess. My left hand shot up and caught her wrist, pulling it away from either of us as I nearly sidestepped her completely. Her chest hit my shoulder and I rolled just before my feet left floor. We spun in the air before we crashed, my body half on top of her and the both of us face-to-face. I didn’t hesitate to bring the letter opener to her neck, just above the carotid artery. I growled a bit gleefully. For once it looked like I had the upper hand.

Wishful thinking, to be sure. In the crash I realized I had lost grip on her wrist and her dagger was now at my throat as well. The cold steel of her blade pressed lightly against my skin as the letter opener pressed against hers. I looked upon her to see that animal rage had moved from her face, which was now completely emotionless, and into her eyes. My own fury now matched hers as we lay there at an impasse. Breathing a bit heavily I asked, “Now what, Bianca? Are we going to cut each other and bleed to death? Right here and now?”

“What a way to die, don’t you think?” she said softly, “Sliced apart while you pray for hope only to find none. A great man once asked if one should fear death. So I ask you, Mr. Melnik: Do you fear… death?”

I remained motionless over her, careful not to let either my own hand or my neck slip, not acknowledging her with a nod for fear of starting the bloodbath early. Instead I whispered quietly, “I do not fear death as long as my death is purposeful. If that means having to put down a dangerous animal the world will be better off.” I can’t say I completely believe what I said, but the pieces on the board were moving into position.

“We are all dangerous beasts in our own right, Mr. Melnik,” and at this she leaned up slightly against the edge of the letter opener, the blade digging into her neck a little but not piercing the skin. “What good is something we cannot test?”

I drew a breath as the blade of her dagger pushed more firmly against me, “There are degrees of danger, Bianca. And the problem with this test is that we can only perform it once.” At this I tilted the letter opener, laying the blade flat against her skin so she couldn’t cut inadvertently cut herself and yet I could still retaliate if need be.

And then it happened, with a minor adjustment to pressure she pulled the blade across my skin in a quick swipe. My jaw dropped and my left hand snapped up to my neck, my right hand flipping the letter opener to its upright and deadly position once again and preparing for the worst. A wave of relief rushed over me as I felt only a few drops of sticky blood welling in a few spots. She hadn’t cut deep and in fact I had probably cut myself worse shaving.

But the utter shock and fear that she had nearly ended it all in such a brutal fashion left me seething with rage. I cursed myself for having shown weakness by leaning the letter opener in an attempt to spare her. She had met that weakness with a show of power and now she simply threw her head back and laughed devilishly, her chest heaving with each giggle that escaped her lips.

My world darkened and I was now watching her through a red haze. I was close, so close to the edge. We were playing her game and she was winning. I felt the growl deep within my chest and relented on the pressure of the blade against her neck, slowly but carefully pulling the opener across her skin. The resulting cut was no deeper than she had done to me, barely breaking the skin but proving that I wasn’t going to let up so easily.

She continued to laugh but as she felt the opener dragging across her flesh she stopped and spoke slowly, “I have been doing well for weeks now; no outburst, no death, no pains… even before they tried their little failed attempts at control. Would you kill me now simply because you see no hope?”

Her words rang true but I couldn’t be sure how much I could trust what she’d said. I took a deep breath and attempted to gather myself, pulling back from the edge of the abyss but my anger still at the forefront, “I told you once before that it wasn’t wise to mess with me, Bianca…”

“I don’t want to simply mess with you, Mr. Melnik. I want to destroy…” and she leaned in close, once again pressing her neck against the blade and running her tongue across my lower lip before nipping it, “…you.”

Her left hand came up to my right and with but a finger started pushing it and the opener away from her neck. My left hand found her right wrist, still holding the dagger (why didn’t I grab that when I had a chance? Oh yes, I was checking to see if I was dying…) and gripped it firmly. I let her push the opener further away since I had her dagger safely at arm’s length and asked the obvious question, “Destroy me? How?”

She replied coldly, “Normally you’d be dead by now if I had things my ways… but half of Babbage would probably miss you…” I knew immediately she was stroking my ego, possibly trying to lure me into a false sense of security. I played the game.

“Who? Me? The bookworm?” I said with a scoff.

“Of course you, the jaded bookworm. You don’t like me because I bring out the real you and it feels so right. Doesn’t it?” She had been playing this angle for awhile now, thinking I was hiding some great monster inside me. Maybe she was hoping to find a reflection of herself, someone with the same affliction.

Unfortunately at that moment I was proving her right. That was how she wanted to destroy me. She wanted to prove that I was the same animal she was and kill me.

She had moved her pieces into position and was ready for the kill. But the game wasn’t over just yet.


*Comment by Sky Netizen on July 25, 2010 at 5:39pm
You know, Scottie, you really should probably stay away from Bianca unless chaperoned…by someone with a weapon, preferably.

begins to wonder if she needs to start a support group titled "The Darkness Within Ourselves: How to Control It"

*Comment by Breezy Carver on July 25, 2010 at 5:59pm
looks up ….. smiles @ Sky and her support group idea ..
Perhaps something like this ??
‘Night creatures’ = nocturnal. They sleep during the day and become active at night.
Durnal creatures, like we humans, may seldom observe their activities. …
Perhaps Scottie should ……
1) Pick Two Night-time Creatures.
2) Identify what things your two creatures have in common.
3) In what ways are they very different.
4)Make a chart… study it .. just for starters ..

just an idea !

*Comment by Gabriell Anatra on July 25, 2010 at 6:21pm
Releasing the beast inside can destroy you, true, but it’s often a bigger threat to those around you. Then again, there are times when reluctance to release it can be fatal to both.

chuckles under her breath

Actually, this affair is beginning to look like a Devrothi mating dance.

*Comment by Bianca Namori on July 25, 2010 at 7:08pm
((ROFL -high fives Anatra- Sadly, I think I’m the only one who gets that…-sighs-))

*Comment by Tepic Harlequin on July 26, 2010 at 2:51am
geezzzz… wonder if there is a new line fer the fashion designers here… day and formal wear with built in armour…? Strange you know though, humans talk bout the beast within, but no fox, or any of the other animals would do stuff like that, think the beast may really be somethin only humans have….

*Comment by Ashai Kohime on July 26, 2010 at 5:25pm
I think we all have deep dark secrets within us.. perhaps a raging beast wanting to be free… or just a few rattling skeletons in the closet. But it sure makes life interesting to say the least.

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