You know whats really fun about sneaking up on assassins?
They always look so surprised.
Its about time I let everyone know where I snuck off to. I went hunting. You could say I went hunting for a tooth if I wanted to be cryptic, pretentious, and vague about what I've been doing. But that's a gross abuse of Latin. That word isn't really supposed to be used like that.
If I wanted to be accurate, plain spoken, and in general just didn't want to sound like an ass about it, I would simply say I hunted down Vallus and clubbed her in the back of her head when she was on her way into her hotel room. Before Nat freaks out, shes fine. I haven't hurt her much.
It's worth noting I didn't actually club her. That's what stun guns are for. And if you don't spasm out and kill over of a heart attack, they are generally a safer way to knock someone out. Especially in comparison to clubbing someone in the head with a hard blunt instrument of some kind. That shit can kill.
Once she was neutralized I walked in, closed the door, tied her up, and dragged her to the bathroom. It was time to get to work. As I said the last time I posted while traveling with Vallus, she never took the Rite of Shattering. So I figured I should do that for her before I die. She owed it to the mask cult to see the rite through if she wasn't gonna act like a proper mask anymore.
For those of you who aren't in the mask cult and have no idea what I'm talking about, the Rite of Shattering is a ritual meant to be performed on a mask as a part of their uninitiation. You tie up the victim and take their mask. Then you make them watch as you hold the mask over an open flame. Once the mask is good and hot, you pass it around to all over masks present. They each get to scratch or cut into the mask. The mask is then heated one more time. Once its good and hot the second time, you smash it against the uninitiate's face until it breaks. And once it does break, they are no longer a a mask and are free to go.
So I started a fire in the motel room's bath tub and sat beside a sleeping Vallus as I cooked her mask over the open flame. She woke up and snapped upright as I was about done heating the mask. I didn't have anyone to pass the mask around to so once it was hot enough I was just gonna start bashing her face in with in.
When she saw me and realized what I was doing she started yelling and cussing at me which is about what I was expecting.
"Moth? God fucking damn it, I should have known. You fanatical piece of shit. You have no fucking right to do this to me! You hear me!? You better hope this kills me because if it doesn't I'm gonna hunt you down and puncture your lungs so I can watch you wheeze and gasp for breath before you collapse and kill the fuck over. You hear me? I'm gonna fucking kill you you pathetic sack of shit!"
So very melodramatic. I lifted the mask out of the flame to see how it was cooking. It was red hot and covered with cracked. Glass masks tend to do that if cooked long enough. The damn thing looked about ready to shatter all on it's own. So I set it aside and turned to face Vallus.
Only it wasn't Vallus anymore... it was PaKaSo... she was crying.
"Wh... Why?" she asked looking at me in utter disbelief. Her face was red and blooded . The pieces of mask on her face were red hot... as if they had just been seared on maybe? Her tears quickly turned into loud cringe worthy sobs. I could tell she was in a lot pain. "Y-You promised to protect me!"
"I am protecting you," said an unfamiliar voice from behind me. I snapped around to find a tall masked gentlemen with long messy hair and a sword on his back staring me down. His attention quickly snapped away from me and back to Picasso. He had a set of red hot tongs in his had... he must has been the one who did it? "You're the one who broke your vows. You brought this on yourself."
His words made PaKaSo sob louder and she crumpled from a sitting position to the fetal position across the tile floor muttering "Please help me" over and over again to herself.
Messy hair laughed and grabbed and shook my shoulder as some aggressive show of comradely. "You're lucky you're getting off this easily. The usual punishment for turncoats is death. You should really be thanking us. Right buddy?"
... What the fuck is going on?
That's when Fracture kicked the door open. Messy hair turned to face him and was immediately greeted with a kick to the chest that pushed both of us back. He looked... different. His face was all bandaged up. But I knew it was him from his all black outfit, lab coat, and cowboy hat. And sure enough it was his voice when he spoke... granted it sounded a little raspy.
"You!" he said pointing at me. "What the fuck are you waiting for?!"
This seemed to confuse Messy Hair. "You're too late Fuck Face. It's done," he said glaring down Fracture. At Fracture's prompt I decided I had finally had enough with all this fuckery. This man hurt PaKaSo... that's all I needed to know. That I hesitated this long was a fucking travesty. I pulled out my knife, grabbed messy hair by his hair and give it a good yank before I slit his throat. He collapsed on the floor and grabbed at my feet as he bleed profusely before killing over.
Picasso sat upright again. She was still crying but she looked a little happier. "Thank god..." she whimpered.
I ran over to check on her, placing a hand on her cheek. She cringed and reeled back a moment. She couldn't stand to look me in the eye. "Why... did you do this to me..." she whimpered and hissed.
What? But I didn't... the messy hair guy... he did it... right?
I never found out the answer to that. I blinked and it wasn't PaKaSo's face I was caressing anymore. It was Vallus'.
"What... the fuck are doing? Do you wanna make out before you bash my face in with my own mask?" she hissed at me looking confused. I looked over at my other hand and sure enough I had her mask in it.
... What just happened?
I stared at her for a good long moment in confusion.
"... Stop groping my face!" she finally yelled, kicking and struggling like an animal and biting at my fingers.
'Fuck it,' I told myself. 'Time to get back to work.'
So I pulled out some goggles from my pocket and put them on her, to which she struggled and screamed more. I think I accidentally caught her hair when I did that.
Then a grabbed her by the throat and shoved her head against the wall to force her mouth closed.
Then I finally wacked her once in the face with her mask. It broke instantly. I didn't even have to hit her that hard with it. I had cooked it well enough to make the rite as painless as possible.
She looked at me in disbelief.
I took my goggles back and cut her free. Then I handed her a note:
'I'm taking the rite myself next month in the mask Den. You should be there. See you around Vallus.'
I turned to leave and she grabbed my shoulder. I turned to face her again and she socked hard in the face throwing me on my ass.
"In case I don't show, those new cracks I just put in your mask should help the ritual along," she said with a cheeky grin. "Now fuck off before I make good on my word and start popping your lungs."
I nodded, stood, and bowed before hustling it out of there.
... I'd say that went well... with the exception of all the hallucinations.