Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Duel-Devil:Loose Ends Day 11





11.

Duel-Devil is surrounded by an impenetrable fog. He hears a loud distorted voice.

"You dare enter the territory of the Ghost?"

"I didn't see your name on it."

Duel-Devil carefully feels around the alley, hoping in vein to grab a
hold of his attacker.

"All The Ghost surveys belongs to him. To avenge the innocent victims of crime
from beyond the grave."

Duel-Devil thinks to himself.

"Did he say from beyond the grave?"

The Ghost leaps down and punches Duel-Devil in the face, followed by a hard
blow to the gut. Ghost or not, he knows how to throw a punch.

Duel-Devil retaliates by kicking blindly, only hitting the cape of The Ghost. Who
responds by kneeing Duel-Devil in the groin and uppercutting him into the air.

Devil knows Qron would throttle him for allowing himself to get beat up like this. For being so dependent upon his eye sight.

He closes his eyes and takes a deep breath. No longer Duel-Devil, but Bart Hill
he relies on his other senses. He hears his opponent running at him, he grabs The
Ghost by the wrist and judo flips him to the ground.

Ghost is quickly back to his feet and is hit by a combination of Duel-Devil punches. Ghost quickly unleashes another canister of gas that takes Duel-Devil's breath away. Then slams him into the brick wall in the alley.

He takes a grappling hook from his belt and repels to the roof. Before leaving,
he speaks again.

"The Ghost has decided to allow you to live. We shall meet again."

He is surrounded by the white fog and disappears.

****

The next morning in his motel room, Bart Hill wakes up battered and bruised. He
is still sleeping in his Duel-Devil costume.

He washes up in the sink and gets dressed. He has some things to do today. His
first order of business is to find The Eyes of Claw. They must have a church
somewhere. He'll join up and hope they lead him to the leader.

Tonight he will investigate the Ghost. Find out what his story is.

Bart walks down the stairs and sees the desk clerk. She is a woman who looks to
be the same age as Bart. She is a bit short and has long dark hair.

"Hello Mr.Hill, will you be staying with us again tonight?"

"I'll be here for awhile Tonia, and call me Bart."

"Well Bart its not my place to pry, but how did you get that black eye."

"I went out drinking, and I guess the local color didn't like me."

Bart could kick himself for saying that. He fears she'll think he's a lush, who
picks fights in bars. Bart has encountered a grand total of three women his own
age since his parents were murdered.

Last five years he lived with Qron alone. After that night at the casino, he
avoided all contact with people.

He looks at Tonia and tries to figure out if she is judging him. Instead she smiles.

"I can't imagine how anybody could dislike you."

Bart tries to gauge that response. Is she interested, or was it just a polite
compliment. Why is he even worried about this? He has to find the Claw Church.

"Um Tonia would you know where I can find The Church of the Claw?"

"Need help taming your crazy night life?"

"No no, I mean."

"Pulling your leg Bart. Yeah there is actually a recruitment center near the
motel. Since this is not the best neighborhood, they have a large pool of souls to
mold."

"Thanks Tonia, catch you later."

"Um Bart?"

"Yes?"

"Be careful, I've seen these Order guys, and they are not exactly bums in a bar.

You could get hurt."

Bart leaves, feeling exhilarated for some reason.

****

Tonia was right and The Order of The Claw's offices are nearby. He walks in and sees a neatly dressed white man sitting behind a desk. Nothing like the Claw Cultist he fought in Pan Guay. They had the gleam of a fanatic in their eyes. Their faces were scarred with a special mark.

The man stands up and anxiously walks over to Bart Hill.

"Hello sir, so happy to make your acquaintance. How may we assist you?"

"Um I'm new to Boston and I need some help getting adjusted."

"Well we can certainly help you with that. We run a wide variety of services here. We can help find you work, and even offer hot meals.

"That would be great, mister?"

"You can call me Fred, we are beyond last names within the Order."

"Can I get you some food?"

"Do I have to give up my last name?"

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