(continued from long ago previous role-play)

Two Months ago........

-------------------

Night grew into day as the eyes from under the hooded cloak watched the blaze from down the street. The explosion rocked the buildings on the block, shattering several windows in the buildings next to the scene of hell that the mysterious person had caused. Caused, but not the catalyst for it all.

The search still continued, and most frustrating to the figure was that this disaster meant nothing, and had no benefit afterwards. The only positive being, the folder. The bag full of blood money swung under the pit of the shoulder carrying it, the folder sitting atop the money that had paid the criminals for taking away the figure's reason to live. It was still unknown as to what the folder contained, but the figure had acquired it, and was about to disclose it. Hopefully, it lead the vengeful ghost straight to Her. But just like the karma that had followed all of the life that has been lived, it was highly doubted.

Police cars and Fire trucks lined the street, followed with Ambulances from the Metro Hospital. It took nearly two and a half hours to put out the blaze, since the roaring flames shot through the venting system, engulfing the entire building. But the eyes in the dark took their time to watch the a**holes burn in the eternal hole that they dug for themselves the night they decided to interfere where they were not invited.... a life that had FINALLY ridded itself of pain.

And as the steaming shell that had been the warehouse building fell into the light of dawn, the figure turned away. For the figure felt unworthy to be in the light, without her. The light, was just far too valuable of a treasure to share alone....

-------

Sitting in the hotel room alone, dark and solemn the figure pulled the folder out of the bag. The gloved fingers pressed against the folder, praying this would steer the observant eyes to the prize, the one that had been won, and stolen unfairly.

Regret consumed our main character, unable to understand how carelessly love had been in the life lived thus far, and how easily it was taken away again. It had always been a battle to get it, and then it had fallen into the lap suddenly. With trembling fingers and a mind full of the hope that was the only thing the figure had left, the folder was opened.

The top letter obtained nearly nothing. Just a few notes and addresses, but still helpful none the less. These addresses were of course to be looked into, hunted down, and destroyed if they had even the slightest connection with the missing love that was lost.

The news was blaring as the figure moved to the window, staring out story after story down to the busy streets below. This was home, to the dark angel of mystery. Down to the last speck of grease from Cabo's Burger Wagon, a greasy cheeseburger spot down the street. But the figure had always loved the high life... large Gala parties laced with wine and beautiful people, ah, the exquisiteness of it all. Magnificent.

"I'm sure all these people love wine...."

The figure held the bag of money outside the window, shaking the large quantity of doe free and loose, spiraling to the street below. Cars began to crash into one another, people scurrying for the quick money, that God had rained down upon them.

"...enjoy all the wine you want."

Unknown to anyone else, the figure smiled. Never happening more than few, an actual smile. One that if had been seen, it would knock the shoes off their feet and make them an instant stalker. The black mass moved across the room and settled on a chair to rest.....

"This just in, a large accident is holding back traffic along 3rd Ave, apparently thanks to a rush for money that had rained down upon the road. Captain Bobby Ratcliffe is above the spot now, in the News 9 Helicopter, Bobby?"

"Thank you, Nancy. I am just above 3rd Avenue where there looks to be at least twelve to fourteen cars in a pile-up down there. You can actually see them scramble for the cash. I don't know who sent down that fortune, but I wish I had been on my way home right about then..."

The figure chuckled as the newscasters did. But more rest was required to keep the flame roaring. Although sleep never came to the figure, knowledge had made the figure force to eat, sleep and take time for them self. If not, the risk of never finding Her..... it would just be too much. And as the figure closed their lids for a moment to catch a few Z's, the news kept on humming the tune of violence.

"Four bodies were discovered earlier today, and are believed to be connected to the explosion of a warehouse a few nights ago......"

Yes, four more bodies. Four more eliminated from a list that had already been created. They had been inside a yacht on the upper west side of town, near Venice Beach. It had taken sail, moving up the coast to keep their crimes discreet. But the figure had already caught up to them before sail, and climbed into a luggage rack near the bow. No one had even noticed until a bat flew in the first man's face.....


***************************

"Bill!"

*THWACK!*

"Oh, Bill, was it?"

"WHO THE HELL IS THAT!?"

"Well, it WAS."

*THWACK*

The bat came down on another head. It was the man who had said the name "Bill". Bill and the other man come later to be known as Denny lay side by side, bleeding from the ears. The other male was sitting on the last stair that lead to an upper deck, but by the time the bat hit Bill's head, he was already on his way for the kill. A swift leg connected with his chin, slamming him back into the wall, shattering it like paper mache' confetti. The man groaned as he looked down across his stomach to the approaching mass of hell. A large splinter of wood blocked his vision half-way into the center of his abdomen. It had punctured his lung, and absolutely demolished his liver. And there, he bled to death as the figure towered over him with a steady gaze.

"You remember this on your trip into the life thereafter. For there are things you have done that you must begin praying for now, if you ever hope the Lord forgives you. Because I cannot forgive you. So instead of shoving a bullet between your eyes faster than the speed of light and ending your suffering, I will give you the time you need for self-pitying yourself and showing your shame to the eyes of God. In return, I will breathe in your last breath, and enjoy your last minute with the gratitude I deserve for what you have done. In Jesus name, Amen."

The man only began to utter a plea to the heavens before the last breath exited his only available lung. And just as the deed was dealt, the deed was done. A long, deep breath entered the body of the figure, from the body that just passed in the destruction of a great wall that held up a major chunk of the ship. The upper floor was beginning to concave, and fall in itself. No doubt the occupant of the boat on the top floor would be on his way.

"I can smell you."

Sure enough a tall leg came flying out, the figure catching it with one hand. With a quick flick of the wrist, the figure had pulled out... a woman. This was no man doing dirty work, this was a woman. The figure smiled with delight. It was always a joy fighting a woman, because the strength was so difficult and different. Men fought with their willpower, their want to fulfill their ego or some vengeful order. But women fought with so much more passion.... relying on everything else, and only used their willpower at the last minute. They took longer to destroy.

This, would be fun.

"It's been a while since I have fought a woman."

A voice purred out, the throat lined with fur slinking out five final words to their greeting.

"It will be your last."

The woman flew forward, shoving the figure back wish a hard punch to the chest. The woman followed with several more punches that should have leveled any other being to the ground, a pancake. But the figure only stood about three inches from its last position, laughing deeply. The woman looked to her fists, then to the fishing pike beside her. She whipped it out, nearly catching the top of the figure's hood, but the figure moved too quickly. A leg whipped under the woman, and as she fell onto her back the wind expelled from her just as the last man had done. To her demise, she had hit a metal hump in the floor on the back of her head.

The figure grabbed onto her shoes, disappointed. It should have been a much more divine encounter. But just like intimacy, it was just sweat and unfulfilled desires.


***************************

It had taken about fifteen minutes to reach the shore, and another fifteen to dispatch of the woman. It was quite easy, and her personal Eulogy reading had been exquisite....

"You are a part of this large chain that has torn my chains apart. And you have paid, and will pay justly for your efforts in my hell. I don't know what you have done before, or if you had ever begged for your own life. But I can tell you that I have done nothing to deserve what you had help in doing, and begging for my life I've become accustomed to everyday. So in short, I pity you. Because you will never get to experience the guilt that you should in life. You will never experience the same fear or hatred that She feels right now. You will never be able to experience the Golden Years where you will die next to your husband at 75 years old, with our many grandchildren's photos on your nightstand. You will never experience the American dream, because you decided to live a deadly, crime-filled one. So now, you will freeze before your firey eternity in hell..... freeze just like your cold, black heart."

And with the final word said, the figure slammed the door and left.....

***************************

".....the woman had been handcuffed, and hung from her hands in the Venice Harbour Freezerhouse. Death was expected of either freezing to death, or blood loss. The discovery lead to an entire police investigation that is expected to last until the perpetrator is reprimanded. The victim has been identified as Jennifer "Vivian" Baker, wanted for several recent charges of fraud, tax evasion and grand theft auto...."

~~

A short time later the figure had made the treck down the road to a pub close to the XWF building. There was much work to do and very little time to do it all in.

The large booth seat looked comfortable, but a large group of young adults had taken it just as the figure neared it. But instead turned, and went to a stool at the bar. A set of greenish eyes stared from the seat beside the figure, eyeing every little detail.

"Wow, you are beautiful."

"Ha, some pick-up line."

"No, I'm serious. I've never seen anything as beautiful as you before. "

"You're drunk."

The man leaned forward, stroking a chunk of auburn-red hair out of a color-puckered gaze of the woman. He gazed into her blue-green eyes, the nearly clear pools of tranquil seawater meeting his own.

"What is your name?"

".....Lillith."

******A MONTH EARLIER*****

Screams had awoke Lillith in the middle of the night, causing her to wound herself on her glass coffee table as she ran from the couch into Abbie's room. She didn't know what was going on, but she had her claws ready, and her teeth bared for any intruder that had dare caused more than laughter to escape Abbie's darling lips.

"Sissy! AHHHHH!"

Lillith pushed open the-.... the door was locked?? How could the door be locked, when there was no locks?

"ABBIE!"

"AHHHHHHHHHHH!"

Her little scream caused the blood to rush into Lillith's ears. She pounded on the door with her knee, then smashed it clean through with a good solid jab. The wood splintered, and the hinges buckled, sending most of the door flying inward. Lillith bounded over the rubble, to look into the seafoam green eyes peering back at her in the night. Abbie clutched onto Lillith, wrapping her arms around her neck. Lillith looked about the room, hanging onto her sister, yet still ready for any attack. But there was nothing.

"Abbie..."

"I swear! I saw it! It was in my room! I don't know, it looked like a man. I saw it, though! Oh, please don't let me sleep alone!"

Lillith flicked on the light, looking about the room. There was still - nothing. Lillith sighed, walking to the bed. She sat Abbie down, but Abbie refused to let go of Lillith. Lillith dropped her arms, letting Abbie dangle like a chain from her neck.

"Abbie.... come on, seriously. We've went through this before. There are no ghosts, no boogeyman. There is nothing to hurt you. They are only shadows. Okay? Please let go, okay?"

But she wouldn't budge. "NO!"

Abbie kicked Lillith in the stomach unintentionally, Lillith nearly swallowing her tongue. Lillith coughed, her eyes nearly bulging out of her head. She gasped for air as she clung to the bedside, before finally falling over. Abbie laughed a little, finally letting go. "I'm sorry, Sissy."

Lillith stood, clutching a point near her belly button. "Wow, you got legs like I do, chica."

Lillith took a deep breath, and looked into Abbie's still startled eyes. "I saw it, though! I did! I know I did... I don't want to sleep here tonight, I want to sleep with you!"

"Honey, you are eight. It is time you slept in your own bed. There aren't any monsters. I will always protect you." Lillith stepped towards the door, Abbie suddenly blocking it within seconds. "Wow, you're quick, too. Ever think about being a wrestler?"

"Nuh-uh. Veterinarian. But you can't make me stay in this room. I will scream! I will!"

Abbie sucked in a huge breath, Lillith slapping a hand over Abbie's lips. Abbie's eyes popped open, and looked up at her sister. "I don't think so, young lady. Last time you did that, I had to replace the windows."

Lillith let go of Abbie, Abbie smiling wide with victory. Lillith turned off the light, and in taking Abbie's hand, they walked to Lillith's bedroom.

--
And from beyond the shadows in the reflection in the window, two eyes loomed back in on the loving, broken family.
--

****Present****

Terrible thoughts had been racing through Lillith's mind after Abbie had been taken away. A constant reminder of her neglect, although Abbie had been by her side each passing moment. But the alcohol shot she had just taken caused a brain rush of a flashback, and she couldn't think of anything else. Except this man who was speaking to her. Something stirred inside her. This was definitely an odd feeling of familiarity.

".....Oh, Lillith! Don't you remember me?"

The eyes looked into Kitten's. The brown inner core surrounded by a green haze.... those eyes she had looked into so long ago for comfort and support. It was Shawn Mather. As a teenager, Lillith had been in and out of juvenile detention holdings, probation, foster care, you name it. It just so happened that one night working late at Burger King, a few old friends decided to stop by and pick her up after close-down. She met him at his large house in the Ghetto of Cedar Rapids, about the equivalent of a 8-block radius downtown, Southeast side. There was a large party, where Shawn had really been the outsider in his home. It was all Kitten's crew. Bottles of Jack and Jose exchanged hands for Smirnoff or Buds, hands exchanged a rolled herb whilst a few of the girls danced in front of the stereo system blaring angry rap. The bodies of the females separated for a moment to squeeze a blessed body into the groove. It was Lillith, not yet 17. His eyes met hers from his position on his bed with the stereo remote in his hand. Her face bathed in red for a moment as she danced with the girls, their hips shaking from side to side. She could see him bite his bottom lip after taking a large gulp of the Jose Cuervo. He stood, heading in her direction. He stood a bit taller than her, especially as he stretched. His arms went above his head for a moment, his fingers sliding on his neck, grasping the neck of his jersey. He pulled off his shirt, his young, rippling muscles distracting the concentration of the female dancers. He smiled, twisting his shirt above his head, the girl grinding against Lillith pressing her hands against his pac. Lillith smiled as she remembered this, one of the best times of her life. She had just lost everything, but found that slice of happy in the World's Finest Shit Pie©.

"Uh..... yeah, actually, I do."

A smile brushed his handsomely chiseled face, the twinkle in his eyes still shining.

"It has been a long time. But I've known where you were almost all the time. Looks like you've been through some shit."

Lillith laughed a little, finding it flattering that her old friend cared enough to keep tabs on her.

"Yeah, and I saw you once in person a while back when you were in Cedar Rapids. I saw you walk down the street and get jumped by a few guys. You took them straight out, too."

"Heh, yeah. I suppose I did."

"But what you didn't know was that there was a group of them a block and a half away that heard the screams and were coming your way. And you know what I did?"

Lillith smiled again. She pictured Shawn grabbing his baseball bat out of his closet, and flying out of his backyard to greet the men with the broad end of what he dubbed his 'N****r Beater'.

"I could take a wild guess."

They smiled at each other, something warm sparking inside of Lillith. Shawn adjusted his weight in his chair, looking to the bartender.

"I'd like to buy this fine woman a drink. Get her what she likes for the rest of tonight."

Shawn slapped a hundred dollar bill on the bar counter, Lillith eyeing the Benjamin like it was gold stolen from Fort Knox. Shawn smiled, folding his wallet and placing it in his back pocket.

"Some of us have jobs, too."

"And what is it that you do?"

Shawn's eyebrow raised.

"A lot of things. I used to be in the repo business and that got me into a lot of the sales I'm in now. You meet a lot of people. I went to college at ISU for a while and then into the military for four years. I'm a military technician for government computers, and let's just say..... you get a lot of business for hacking just a little information."

Illegal stuff. Figures. Probably weapons, drugs, government intelligence, and who knows what else. It didn't surprise Lillith. But it didn't impress her either.

"I told you I was keeping tabs on you, Lillith. And it worries me that I haven't seen you in the XWF for quite a while now. What have you been doing?"

Lillith's eyes fell to the whiskey and coke drink in front of her. Her little sister loved Coke. In the back of her mind, she heard Abbie's laugh. Then... Abbie's scream. She closed her eyes tightly, as a soothing, warm hand fell on her back.

"Are you okay?"

Lillith looked back into the greenish eyes of the man she hadn't seen in nearly a decade. She shook her head, as tears began to swell in her eyes. He touched her face, wrapping his arm around her to comfort her in the crook of his neck.

"She's gone.... Abbie... she's gone...... I can't find her... she was..."

"Shhh....."

"You don't understand."

"I do understand," Shawn said, taking his arm away. "I understand completely. I know you found your little sister. I heard she was taken away, but by unnamed sources. Do you have any idea who it was?"

Lillith shook her head again. Shawn's eyes gazed into Lillith's.

"I will help you."

Lillith looked at him solemnly, suddenly alarmed by his choice in her matters.

"No... it's too risky and way dangerous. You have no idea what I have done.. OR what I am capable of."

Shawn's smile reached from ear to ear.

"I've known you since after you left your family. I knew you through your worst mental breakdowns. I knew you when we robbed the gas station together, and when we ran away together."

Lillith closed her eyes, hiding a smile that lie within them. Yes, she remembered running away together, too. To South Padre Island. That had taken what little money they could conjure up and the money they stole from the gas station, and took off south. They spent two and a half weeks in South Padre, until they were caught by the authorities. They had sent every night on the hot sand on the beach, and every day in the clubs, pubs and flea-markets. They had shared their first kiss under a full summer moon on the strip of sand that spread a mile and a half along the coast. She remembered what he had said to her.... the things he whispered in her ears..... how he'd 'take it all away forever'. How when they finally came and took them away.... her fingers seemed to meld into his as they yanked them apart.... how she screamed for him with tears streaming down her cheeks..... the look in his eyes as he screamed out in anger..... he had smashed on man in the back of the head with a large rock that lay in the sand, and began tearing after Lillith....Lillith reached out for him as one man had her around the waist, carrying her away.... the sudden tranquilizer dart shooting into Shawn's back, leveling him to the sand.

Shawn touched Lillith's cheek.

"Remember what I said to you the last time we saw eachother? The last thing I said?"

Yeah, she remembered. How every dream she lived was always smashed in terrible ways.... how everything happy in her life was always torn away. "I will come for you, Lillith! I will come for you!".....Shawn had said as his eyelids slowly closed, his body numb and tired. It was the last she ever saw of him until today.

"Yeah."

"I am here, now. It took a little longer than I had wanted. But now I've got the money, I've got the resources..... I've got the will to be a father figure, Lillith. I want to take you both away. I always wanted to take you, and when I found out about Abbie I wanted to take her too. I want to help you find her, Lillith."

Lillith's breath jumped in her throat, causing her heartbeat to accelerate.

"You can't tell me no."

Lillith swallowed hard, a tear falling down her cheek. Shawn's finger touched the bead of liquid emotion and wiped it away as though it were a pearl upon silk. The same finger brushed Lillith's lips.

"All right...... but don't get in my way.