stuff us in boxes that's where you want us
cardboard is boring, we brought our matches - look how it burns
The more Darcy spoke of his reasonings, hell the more he droned on, the more he betrayed his own twisted thought process. Harley found no need to argue with it, for now, even every last drop of defiance roared within her, seeking to destroy a man the best way she knew... by striking his very ego. However, that would do little to suit her tonight she was sure. After all, she needed to coax that vampire off her own trail, not piss him off even though the latter seemed far more feasible with Harley's runaway mouth. Of course placing blame on Chase would have been far too convenient, one Darcy seemed less inclined to believe those subtle accusations. Pity.
"Look at you.. You've got everything all figured out. What do you need me for?" Everyone was a suspect in this game. with the vampire. Cade was an easy target, one that Darcy seemed convinced not to blame. They were running out of people to place that blame. Harley considering ways to add other players onto that board to keep that accusatory look within Darcy's mismatched eyes far far away from her.
Now... if only Harley could keep her goading words to herself and yet how easy it was to goad the vampire with violent tendencies. Yet, when did that ever stop Harley from speaking her mind, from saying the things that probably should have gone unspoken. How she would one day.. Or soon pay for that and yet... still she presses on. That sharp warning hiss cut through the room, that utter disdain plastered all over his face that declared she had struck a nerve. It was almost easy to plant the seeds of deceit and he fell for it, exactly to the letter. Risque was his weakness, it was obvious before and yet how glaring it was now. But perhaps she shouldn't be tempting fate with the trigger happy vampire. Somehow, her nickname shifted from kitty to woman... which probably was an indication to just how severely she pissed him off.
How rapidly his patience fled him then. He hardly had to declare it as he did. She offered him a slight quirk of her lips and a nonchalant rise and fall of her slender shoulders. "What can I say, it's a talent."
It was then that Darcy uttered her name, that instinct desire to respond to it sent her gaze upward. That brief glance was all he needed to ensnare her with that inescapable stare. Those eyes she had met fearlessly so many times before she met with no less ease, forever the defiant little creature... far too big for her own petite body. Far too vibrant a soul to be contained fully... The moment their eyes locked, she knew she was in trouble, there was something far darker than she had anticipated it. She finally wondered if she had pushed too far. But she was far too late for that.
Harley instantly hated that creeping, slithering sensation, that tingled through her limbs. There was no way to stop that paralysis that entered her body like a violation she could do nothing but accept. Fuck.. He held back purposely. Just so she could feel it, that slow stripping of her control according to his own whim. She was forced to feel his power, taste it in a way she hadn't before. He wanted her to know she couldn't run, couldn't move, not without his express permission. Those moments where realization had settled within her caused her to nearly thrash in retaliation. Only she couldn't. The feline within rioted against that very threat. That fear made her lash out, much like any cornered cat would. She wasn't gifted with claws to not use them. She was like a lit stick of dynamite.. Her lip quirked downward in her complete distaste for that situation.
He did not actually mean for her to call him sir. Yet what choice did she have? Her violet eyes darkened, as she desperately wanted to break that uncomfortable eye contact and wasn't even able to blink. That wicked gleam tugged upon his lips only added to his arrogant expression that said he won. He loved this. Every goddamn minute of it, of breaking people. How quickly those positions were switched from goader to goaded. Sir.. It was just a word, right? She just had to say the words and be done with it. But why did it feel like swallowing fire?
That frown pinched her brow together, if those two little words could get her out of this hold she set her own pride aside. "..... Kindly... screw yourself... Sir." The raven-haired woman strained, muttered barely under her breath as if uttering those words would release that hold. Asshole. She braced for that strike, hell she might have winced before he even moved. She could hardly help that growl within her voice... or the fact that fear flashed in her eyes as that power increased. No. She said the fucking words. Sorta. His gaze never left her own, her eyes stung without being able to blink. Her breath quivered as it was almost suffocated from her.
His tongue merely slid across his own lips in a predatory fashion that said just what he was contemplating... something that she had no desire in repeating. He let her reveal in that defeat, like she was at his very mercy... and in truth, she was dead... should he desire it. To make matters worse... he began his story. The woman was forced to listen to that looming threat. He had already demonstrated that very thing and how she was unable to forget it. Instead of releasing her.. He began to share a little story with the intent to terrify her, to rattle all that confidence she had clung to even though in this very moment wavered. How she regretted tempting the monster out to play. Yet... the depraved bastard... could only kill her once. How certain that her death was not supposed to be now... after all she had survived. She could not tame her traitorous heart beat... Did he say... bite through bone? Now that just sounded.. Painful. His fangs... were nothing that he wanted anywhere near her. It brought up that memory within the parking garage... How could she forget?
"How... terrifying of you. It's got b-rated horror film all over it.. I see why... Risque chose someone so brutal... now... can we.. just...... go back to finding the bad guy now... " She pressed her lips in a hard line before adding the word that would end all of this. "Sir." Better alive and having your pride totally fucked every which way to sunday than dead. He watched her struggle for a moment longer simply because the sick bastard enjoyed it.
Those cold words uttered before his hold suddenly fell. The return to the use of her limbs was enough to rejoice in. But she didn't, this was not what it meant to be victorious. You would think that most people wouldn't continue to stare down the asshole with the deadly cut eye and yet the absolute fury in her soul, caused a raging tempest with nowhere to go. Darcy could take and attempt to break her, the wild look within her violet depths echoed that he only served to fuel her. How close to that surface the animal that had taken residence within wanted to burst through her seams. Wanting nothing more than to use those claws that she had not yet used for any true harm. His attempts to destroy her as close as they brought her to ruin, she would not allow him the pleasure of destroying her. He might be able to end her.. But he would damn well not end her mind. No that was hers and hers alone.
At the very least Darcy thought he had won this little fight. Let him. An arrogant man was the easiest to fool. Plus, she had names... names that she was sure she could use to shape the narrative to her own. She listened to the grating sound of his drumming his fingers upon the desk as though he hadn't almost killed her for sport. She could barely stop the comment from escaping her, one that did little else than to bring that disturbing partial smile to his own lips. Motivated? Is what he called himself? It took every ounce of self control not to roll her eyes.
He clearly was unaware of the term psychopath. How out of touch from reality he seemed to be. Harley lost in a tirade of her own thoughts.. And dredged up emotions reached her hand out near absentmindedly to Princess who hardly seemed to blame her for the little mishap from earlier.
It was a mindless attempt to soothe herself as she spoke of things she would rather leave buried, the feel of fur beneath her fingertips altogether harmless. How the lynx seemed to lean into that very touch, enjoying the absentminded caress of Harley's hand. The sound of purring seemed to fill up that very room as a very pleased Princess rumbled her own pleasure.
The sound, harmless as it was, brought forth the vampire's attention to that action. One Harley didn't even see coming. His mood shifted so lightning fast, his pet's name lashed out like a chastising whip. The Lynx's body grew taut, her demeanor shifted as quickly as Darcy's own mood that she reacted to. Ears quickly flattened upon her head, an image of a threatened animal. In a flash, Princess scrambled off that bed to hide. It all happened to quickly that Harley.. seemed confused, her hand returning to her lap. Was he really pissed off because Princess was purring? Harley had barely a moment to comment upon that unusual scene when Darcy continued his relentless questioning. He had earned himself a inch.... And he wouldn't stop until there was nothing left to take. Didn't she give him enough?
How she wished she didn't open a can of worms she didn't truly wish to open. But what choice did she have? She had to be believable and what way to be more believable was.. The truth... well.. Sort of.. It was far from the truth, but it planted yet another seed that pointed further and further away from her and Matteo who was entirely off the radar.. She had every intention to keep it that way.. and yet.. Either vampire she mentioned put her on edge, her form grew ridgid as she pushed the emotion from herself. "Ryker.. Oh that lowlife was a fanboy of Risque's brother.. Who wanted everything he had... so when Risque's brother.. Did his little vanishing act.. It gave Ryker an opportunity to take over,anything and everything. I think he had the hots for Risque too.." She added that last part, knowing very well.. It was a lie. While... he wanted Risque as an ally... is eyes were on what Nathaniel possessed... in his own twisted way. There was far too much of a story there, one she hardly expanded on.. One that she had no desire reliving. She conveniently left out those vampire's fascination.. With... Harley herself. The mention of Risque would certainly be enough to have him drop the trail entirely, she was sure it was worth the risk of enraging Darcy further.
Darcy easily rose from his chair that command and a snap of his fingers like she was nothing more than a trained pet. He crossed the room to the door as he expected her to follow, he barely gave her a second look before he left that room with the expectancy of Harley to follow in his wake. He seemed to be a man on a mission and yet none of it seemed to include her. Shit. Was he going to talk to Risque about her brother now? Oh fuck no. That would bode poorly for Harley and she knew it. How she knew Risque hated her for that wedge she put between them. Although that rift was already there, she was certain. Harley was left with nothing but to follow him. His lack of intention made her question herself for the barest of moments.
She rose from that bed, very much glad she was able to do just that. Poor Princess was still nowhere to be seen. How many times did it take for her to learn that lesson? Harley wondered before moving to follow the unkind pace Darcy had set. He was already halfway down the hallway by the time she closed the door behind her, glad to be out of the suffocating room.
It was a small mercy to find that he did not head to the direction of Risque's office but deeper into the underground of that club. His key flashed to unlock another door into the veritable maze that Syn. She was forced to catch up with the quickened pace that Darcy set. She was forced to nearly break out into a run to catch that door that nearly closed without her. Her hand shot out just in time, as though she knew what would become of her if she didn't keep up.
This entire hellhole was a place that intended to keep people in... those brave enough to attempt their escape would only be met with countless locked doors that all looked the same. Who the hell knew what was behind them. If Syn were a beast, they headed into its twisted innards willingly. Darcy moved through it with the confidence of a man in his own home, after all this was very much his depraved domain. The staircase was precarious at best and yet it hardly slowed his quickened single-minded pace that the apprehensive Harley's own shorter legs struggled to keep up with.
The final door they entered was one she knew that only drew a question to the forefront of her mind. Why? Had Darcy finally met his limit with her and he seeked to discard her within one of those cages himself? He uttered not a single word to her, leaving her to rot in her own thoughts.
It was almost satisfying to see how empty that room was... It was once lined with felines and food... now only a scant few of them were occupied... one cheetah seemed to hiss at them as they passed, the woman possessing nothing more than pity for the creature. Soon those cages would fill again and those ranks once more filled.. There were ominous rooms attached at the back signaled only by heavy enforced, silver infused steel doors that looked like they belonged more in a bank's safe. They lead to more enclosures, a far more elaborate set up than the bare cages within this room that was more akin to a bare prison.. And even then... she was sure that a prisoner in an actual prison was treated with far more dignity than this place.
Without warning Darcy bellowed a singular name, his voice commanding as it seemed to echo off those walls. Harley had an inkling to the disturbing man he summoned to him. It grew painfully quiet that one could hear a pin drop. A moment longer she heard a click and a familiar sound that nearly had her hovering closer to Darcy himself. Clink, clink, clink. The wiry man moved like a long legged tarantula. She would never forget those cutting hollowed cheekbones that appeared almost gaunt or the way the shadows played upon the sharp groves of his face only making the man more grotesque.
A sick delight seemed to strike Ruben the moment those all too dark eyes settled upon her. Harley could not help the singular step she took backwards as if space was a luxury she could possess. Fuck, he gave her the creeps. Harley wondered just how far that vampire would take his own obsession. That singular step back only drew Rueben closer, the man fixated with the raven haired woman as he reached his hand to touch her. Just as she felt her lip begin to curl in retaliation, a venomous glare shot in his direction in warning. What she did not anticipate was the way Darcy intervened with a quickness that startled her. He struck that very hand away that seemed to leave Rueben in a shocked state that matched her own.
Rueben seemed to retreat, his eyes darted too and fro and yet he did not merely retreat. No, he seemed almost eager to strike back and for a moment she was sure that he would. A fight nearly erupted then... until the far more submissive vampire thought better of it as he gave way to an image of perfect obedience. The show was altogether baffling, vampire hierarchy at work right before her very eyes.
Harley remained uncharacteristically silent, which was arguably the smartest thing she had done all night. Darcy's words held that threat reserved for her, knowing all to well of her fate should she not fall in line. There was no time to react to that very comment, not with the caretaker's stare still eerily upon her. For once... she almost seemed grateful for Darcy's presence.. To deter from the other vampire's sick fascination.
So it would seem... Darcy really didn't discriminate to those he despised. The she panther was getting the feeling that it was pretty much everyone. She fell silent as she watched that oddly compelling interaction.
Harley thought Risque had a weird fascination with cats but this fanged one took it to all new gloriously fucked up new heights. Who referred to captives as 'pretty one'. Harley could hardly keep the blatant look of disgust, rolling her shoulders as if trying to rid herself from the disturbing sensation... who the hell knew what he did with these felines that were stuck here for more than a few nights. What he did to those with far less fight than Harley possessed.
Harley listened to that transaction... and quite frankly.. As much as she would rather be anywhere else but here in that very moment there was an opening. An opportunity so long as this feline didn't rat her out. But at the very least she could control that dialogue. It was entirely risky... and yet.. Had she not walked this tightrope a million times before? She drew in a breath as she peered around that room, acting disinterested and yet soaking in every last crooked word.
Darcy was dangerously smart on many levels.. But he was missing some vital detail that changed the entire narrative. If he hadn't put so much.... Trust in Harley herself... she wondered if he would have been able to crack that vital clue to that very code... The look on his face, to learn he had been working with his enemy all along. Well, then this story would have been written and completed a long time ago. He would have found that photo on one of those patron's phones and that would have been all she wrote. The topic of Risque it would seem. was forever the quickest way to his fuse. How well she already knew that.
Darcy snapped, explaining his plan with the other vampire who hardly seemed interested in anything other than Risque and those cats. He gestured toward the woman herself... she could have fucking smiled... then from ear to ear. Clearly this couldn't have been planned any damn better. Detective double cross... primed and ready in a pit of nightmares.
That threat he offered to her squashed any notion that he would treat someone he deemed useful. His threat was what she had determined as a Darcyisms... It was like the man couldn't stand not to be a total asshole for less than the allotted time of 30 seconds. An all too dramatic sigh escaped her, all a bravado enhanced with an idle sweeping swoosh of her hand out before her. It didn't take long for that armoured sarcasm to grace her once more.
"Aw and lose your in house translator? Judging by the lack of cats... in general.. You might need me a teensy bit.." She rose her right hand to show with her thumb and pointer finger just how much. That was not to discredit the thought of being here another night gnawed within her gut, knowing the truth behind his very words.
"But... yet.. Let's lose darkness and time while you let your enemies.. Run free..." How desperately she wanted out of his underground hell and yet she was sad for the poor man who had a taste of freedom... only to be returned to shortly after. The fact that so many had managed to get away perhaps made it all worth it.. That very reason might be... the nail in her coffin if he should blame her for being caught. Pissed off people became unreasonable people.
The odd trio formed of a cat.. And two homicidal maniacs walk into a prison.. That's exactly what this was besides the start of a terrible joke.. How she wished it were to be true, even though those cages had been polished and cleaned that not a spec of dirt marred its surface even though the dejected feline inside would certainly haunt her forever. Why couldn't he escape like the rest? He not only put her own life at risk... but his own was a sealed death sentence within this never ending hell that he called home. What would she do if Risque decided she possessed too much freedom? What if she forced her in one these cages, trapped in a form she hadn't truly accepted. The woman despite all her acerbic sarcasm could not hide that frown that marred her features or the way she tucked her hands safely in the confines of her pockets to keep from fidgeting with her phone. A dead giveaway to the apprehension that filled the usually confident woman now. The lanky vampire moved swiftly, his long legs carrying his thin skeletal form to what Harley called the reject cages.. Those beings destined to be forgotten, the beings whose wills were destined to be obliterated to insanity. Perhaps that's why they were forced into those feline forms, never to feel what it meant to walk upon two legs or to speak with actual vocal chords. Even though there were nicer enclosures than these buried in the back, these were made to break wills... And how terribly effective she knew that singular fact to be. Her lips flattened into a grim line, this disgust hardly concealed as she could hardly keep those words at bay, her inner feline rioting just beneath her skin. Fuck these vampires. She could feel that warriors' flame deep within her flare, while those piercing striking purple eyes hardened it fell to the poor creature she remembered. A beast that once possessed hope had been completely shattered.
"Fucking hell.. What did you do to him?"