NationStates Jolt Archive

Mateo's End (Warning: Graphic Content)

Dread Lady Nathicana
29-08-2003, 01:06
ooc: True, some of you hardened souls may find this mild, however, the following contains scenes of torture and as such, I felt the need to warn readers ahead of time. That being said ... on to the post.

It had been a week since Mateo had burst into this office, so full of himself ... so confident. She turned her face to the window, looking out over the bleak view of her city in the rain. Often, the stormy weather brought comfort, seeing the water washing things clean, seeming to bring new colors out of the bricks and painted stucco walls, watching the play of the wind and the clouds.

But not today. A grey pall seemed to hang heavy over the city, the clouds low and threatening. Thunder rumbled in an almost constant boom, the sound ebbing and flowing. Lightning flashes occasionally lit up the sky, striking sharp contrasting lights against the washed out buildings. The waters of the Canale were dark and choppy, with few venturing out on them to brave the dreary weather.

Her brow was furrowed in thought as she sat, looking out through the rain-streaked window. The ice in her water had long since melted, the glass sitting untouched on her desk in a pool of condensation. It was past time, and she knew it.

She took a deep breath, letting it out slowly, her eyes closing for a moment, then she stood, and made her way resolutely to the door. Down the hall she walked, the heels of her boots echoing dully through the long corridor. The few faces she saw going about their duties shrunk back at her approach, some flinching as if expecting a blow after catching a glimpse of her cold expression. Hushed whispers seemed to spring up in her wake, furtive glances and knowing looks, with many a nod at the direction her steps were taking her.

Opening the iron-bound door at the far end of the hall, she stepped out into the cool air, and onto the Bridge of Tears, two stories up from the canal below. Completely enclosed, it differed from many of the other bridges in the city, though it retained the feel and beauty of the others. It was dark, save for the stoneworked lattice openings situated at regular intervals along its length where the dim light of the overcast day leaked in. Through those small windows had many a condemned had caught his last glimpse of the outside world before entering the prison beyond. The wind whistled through the crevices as she crossed the passage, its floor worn with the crossing of many feet over the years. She shivered in spite of herself. Coming to the end, she opened the other door, a mirror of the first, and entered into the Prigioni Scura, the old prison from the days of city states and Doges.

Other than some structural fixes, little had changed in the prison over the years. The lower level in fact, had been somewhat restored, and used for the tourism industry. But here, in the back, away from the busy Piazza and the crowds, hidden from the view of curious passersby, it was cold, worn, and gloomy. Old, worn stone pavers made up the floor, in many places, split or chipped. The stucco walls might once have been white, but from time, dirt, and the constant burning of candles, now replaced by dim electric lights, had greyed their color and streaked them in centuries old grime.

The six cells along this hallway were all empty, save for one. Outside it sat a box, a surgical bag, and a large plastic cooler full of ice water, as she'd directed. Even before she opened the old wooden door, she could hear the sounds of someone in pain emanating from the small cell.

Through the door, there was an oddly shaped cell covered in ancient wooden planking, stained from the nails that held them in place, rotted through in spots. A small short footstool sat in a corner, as did a bucket in another. A long, very old wooden table fixed with two four-handled cranks, one at each end, and six rollers, covered in small spikes sat up along the left hand wall. And from the arched ceiling, from an old wrought-iron hook mounted there, hung a man. Until a few hours ago, his wrists and elbows had been bound with rope behind him, then pulled back and up onto the hook via a length of the rope, leaving him hanging in an agonizing position, his toes swinging just above the floor. He wore not a stitch, and his body showed the signs of a weeks worth of such treatments.

First, it had been simply sitting naked, shackled ankle chains attached via handcuffs to wrists. Water had been provided on an infrequent basis in a small pie tin, forcing him to lap it up as best he could like a dog. This was the first day.

On the second, his muscles already cramped, he had been hung upside down for hours on end, his hands bound behind him. Occasionally, guards would come in to wash him down with buckets of cold water ungently poured over him. He had been forced to get what liquids he could during those times.

The third day, he was forced to sit atop a metal board with several long lengths of pointed corrugation bolted atop it, its hard metal edges digging into his flesh mercilessly, his elbows bound to his knees, and wrists to ankles with rope tight enough to hurt, but not to cut off circulation, and his neck kept firm by a metal manacle set in the wall. He was force-fed a bitter pork broth that was entirely too salty in content. The thirst had been as unbearable as the seat.

When dawn rose on the fourth day, he had been given a brief reprieve. His wounds were tended to, a succulently rich meal was allowed ... which he ate entirely too quickly. His stomach, after so long without, cramped horribly. When he complained, he had been beaten with long tubes filled with dry rice, delivering solid but undamaging blows over his already aching body.

For the entirety of the fifth, he was doubled up inside a confining wooden box with very little ventilation, and left for the entire twenty-four hours. The filth and the stench of bodily fluids, sweat, and excrement were unbearable. He was hardly able to breathe, let alone budge in the cramped space. By the time they let him out, he was screaming in shrill panicked gasps like a stuck pig.

That morning of the sixth, he was moved swiftly from his cramped position to one more stretched out, giving him no time to adapt. A leather collar with D-rings in both the front and back was afixed to his neck. To the ring, his wrists were pulled up behind his head, and handcuffed. He was made to face the wall, and linked with a small screwlock carabiner to an old iron ring there, placed at such a height that he was forced to stand up on his toes to breathe properly. Each time the already cramped muscles in his legs gave, the collar pressed viciously against his windpipe.

Which brought him to today, hanging as he was from one wrist from the hook in the ceiling, his shoulder, obviously dislocated from the strain of his weight. The cell stank from human waste, sweat, and blood. His head was slumped down on his chest, his breathing ragged. An occasional anguished sob wracked his body, and when it did, yet more noises of pain whistled and squealed forth as it jogged his shoulder. His bound wrist was covered in scratches and dried blood where he'd tried to claw himself loose from his confinement. At the opening of the door, he weakly raised his head, and looked at her with haunted, yet burning eyes.
29-08-2003, 01:09

Very good post. Presumably it will, well, have her completing the process? Some nice descriptive passages and an interesting view of something different to WASP morality.

(couldn't fully comply with the request, hope that's more worthy)
29-08-2003, 01:19
29-08-2003, 01:20
OOC: Hmmmm, Janus Mateo was alive last time my Foreign Minister checked. :?
29-08-2003, 06:31
The SLAGLands
29-08-2003, 06:45
OOC: are one twisted bitch, Nathi. ;)
29-08-2003, 06:47
OOC: are one twisted bitch, Nathi. ;)

OOC: Ah yes, but what a wonderful twisted bitch she is, eh?
29-08-2003, 14:51
ooc: indeed a very good post *marks thread* - and wonderful is the word, Haraki :wink:
29-08-2003, 15:04
[tag....remind me to never fall into your hands *shudders*)
29-08-2003, 15:28

OOC: Why was I foolish enough to read this around dinner time?
29-08-2003, 16:49
Well, without comment on wether one might be hardened or not, it is most interesting to note that with the new UN measurement of ranking by trait for this day, we see that Dread Lady Nathicana is ranked 1st in the region and 4,062nd in the world for Largest Insurance Industry.

Which causes me to wonder, did her people learn of this most carefully detailed and considered punishment and react overnight, perhaps, to ensure that should the worst also befall them, their families might at least be still provided for?

Nothing like a strong dose of the "worst" to shock one into taking whatever preventative measures one can think of... Nice story Nathicana!
Dread Lady Nathicana
29-08-2003, 17:31
"I knew you'd come," he manages to hiss through clenched teeth. "Have I entertained, over the past week?"

She looks at him coldly, her face void of all emotion. "Hardly. To truly be entertaining, one needs a subject with backbone, intelligence, or at least, wit. You have none of these things, you weak, pathetic excuse for a man." Her tone never takes an edge, she simply speaks in a cool distant tone.

He snarls at that, instantly regretting the effort as he winces and yelps in pain once again. "Filthy bitch," he half-whimpers, still staring at her hatefully.

She says nothing, simply retrieves the stool from the corner, and a knife from her boot, and walks back over to him. At the sight of the knife, he struggles weakly, crying out again in pain and fear. She ignores his struggles, steps up on the stool, and cuts the rope holding him aloft. He unceremoniously collapses on the floor with a roar of pain.

In a business-like manner, she kicks the stool back towards the corner, and tucks her knife back in her boot. She moves behind him, and grabs his arm and shoulder, giving it a sharp twist and push, popping it back into its socket. This of course elicits yet another loud wail from Mateo, who jerks his arm back in against his body, hunching over and hugging himself tightly, muttering imprecations in their native tongue.

She watches will cool disdain for a moment, then drags him forcibly to his feet in a seemingly effortless manner. He is struck once again by the unnatural strength she has, and his eyes widen even as he yelps from pain and suprise. Sitting him down on the table she goes about fixing his ankles in the appropriate straps, her hands wrapping 'round his feet firmly, forearm pinning his shins down against the ancient wood. As he leans forward to try and stop her, she casually backhands him, sending him reeling back and cursing. Quickly she finishes, and moves on to the arms, pulling them firmly up over his head, and forcing him down onto the rollers, their short but painful spikes driving their tips into his flesh, eliciting new howls of pain. She maintains her non-nonsense manner, going through the process showing no emotion, not even a hint of irritation, operating like some unfeeling automaton.

Methodically, she checks the straps, gives an experimental twist to each of the wheels, assuring herself that they're working properly. "You know, for all their pious exteriors, I find the church truly had a taste for the obscenely twisted, don't you? The methods they used to employ ... truly pushed the boundaries back then." She spoke in a casual manner, much as one would over tea. "You have read your history of this place, haven't you Janus? No? Perhaps you'll allow me to enlighten you."

Ignoring his protests she went on, speaking about the horrors of Inquisition and religious persecution as she retrieves the box and the cooler from outside the door. "Accused heretics were imprisoned without hearing the charges against them, and kept in stinking dungeons, dark and vermin infested, alone with their excrement. Moldy bread and stale water helped to supplement the cockroaches and spiders."

She unscrewed the lid on the watercooler, and set it aside. "A prisoner who refused to confess could be left in solitude and darkness for weeks, months or even years - all in the interest of saving another erring soul, of course."

Lifting the cooler, she began splashing the ice water over him, washing away some of the filth, ignoring his shrieks. "They had lovely little toys like the 'pear' that were forced into the mouth or other orifices of the victim and there expanded by force of the screw to the maximum aperture of their three segments, with the pointed prongs assisting with the ripping and tearing therein. Nasty business that, don't you think?"

He was cursing and frothing, venting all manner of insults and spite at her in their native tongue. She of course, ignored it, her cool facade never changing. "They even used to lash the victims to wooden crosses, then broke the bones of each leg and arm in at least two places with iron bars, leaving them to die. Crude, I admit, but a rather drawn out and painful way to go."

She let the continued images sink into his brain, knowing he'd already suffered horribly, and that the added mental anguish of trying to guess what she was going to do, and how she was going to end it were slowly driving him mad.

I will see him broken. Completely and utterly broken before I finish.

"Of course, the Catherine Wheel, the cages, pressing and the ever popular roasting alive were always crowd-pleasers. Nevermind all the blades, prongs, bludgeons, irons and drills those nasty people used. Of course, you find yourself now on one of my favorites. I always thougt the rack had a simple yet wicked charm to it." She fetches a plastic cup from the box of odds and ends, filling it from the cooler, and taking her time quenching her thirst.

"Oh ... one last thought should it have possibly crossed your mind," she begins in an offhand manner. "No, you wouldn't have died horribly otherwise. Your supposed disease?" She pauses, taking another long sip. "It never existed. I imagine, had you kept your wits about you, you'd have lived quite comfortably to a ripe old age ... your charts were quite detailed. I'm afraid you've underestimated me from the start, Janus. That, and you've chosen your friends very, very poorly. Pity."

Mateo is speechless at that, his jaw working silently, eyes wide as then entire Treznor set-up flashes back through his mind.

Having satisfied herself there, she rolls up her sleeves, takes the small folding stand from the box, and begins laying out various tools - syringes, bottles, scalples, needles, surgical thread, and odd little mechanical-looking steel pieces, all in full view of her victim. She leaves the rags and other clean-up supplies in the box, pushing it aside with her foot.

"Well, my dear Janus," she says turning to him with same emotionless face she's maintained throughout the proceedure. "Shall we begin?"

ooc: to those who've taken the time to comment ... it was unexpected, yet appreciated. I hadn't thought this would generate as much interest as it has for some reason. I can only hope it's not simply the 'Graphic Content' warning sucking people in. To those who may be offended ... at the risk of sounding cold - I make no appologies, as you were warned.
29-08-2003, 17:43
Very good posts. Do you have anything in mind if I join in?
29-08-2003, 17:46
OOC: Nice, although a bit long at some points. Still, I'm a bit confused; who's the guy and why is he... here...
29-08-2003, 17:48
OOC: Nice, although a bit long at some points. Still, I'm a bit confused; who's the guy and why is he... here...

Very, very long story. - OOC Minister of Intelligence

Nathi, again I applaud your work. Very, very nice writing, and I must say I enjoy seeing the man get what he deserves. - OOC Emperor Death Claw
Dread Lady Nathicana
29-08-2003, 18:15
ooc: For those who have asked, a very, very brief overview for your perusal. There is of course, much more to it, but hey.

Mateo intro (, lots of character dev, and towards the end of this very long thread, more Mateo
Mateo 'resigns' (
Intro Dragonisia incident (
Mateo reinstated (
Revenge (
Details of Mateo's set-up over Dinner (
Action taken in Resolution (
Martial Law ( for cleanup.
Back to Business as Usual (
And from there, to here.

Mintar - of course it's long. It's a narrative. Daneland - I've no idea what you're talking about. Haraki - thanks, darlin. Appreciated. Now - waiting for the next on your rather impressive story.
29-08-2003, 18:18
argh. I cant even type sentences correctly. What I meant was is it ok if I add a character t your story, or do you just want feedback on your work?
29-08-2003, 21:43
argh. I cant even type sentences correctly. What I meant was is it ok if I add a character t your story, or do you just want feedback on your work?
i shall not reply but hey... i frankly do not think Nathi wants anyone to mess in her great character RP.
Dread Lady Nathicana
30-08-2003, 05:22
Hours later, his body stretched and tormented on the wicked rack, Mateo gasped out weakly as Nathicana tested the bonds on his left arm. For all this time, she had patiently tightened the slack, notch by notch, allowing the full import of his situation settle in, the pain to dull to a throbbing ache before repeating the process. Throughout it all, she had chatted nonchallantly about various methods of torture, even going so far as to reveal to him the fate of his onetime replacement, Ambrose Bercier. The retelling of that had left him pale and stuttering.

As evening drew on, one of her aides came knocking at the doorway, his hands carrying both a covered tray and a bottle, and his eyes looking everywhere but the scene inside. His face crinkled up in disgust at the smell and the knowledge of what was going on. She directed him in, taking the tray from his hands, and placing it atop Mateo's tautly stretched torso, removing the lid and setting it aside. He was dismissed with a casual wave of her hand.

A wonderful, hot meal of lamb with mint pesto, roasted vegetables, and a saffron risotto. A bottle of Pietraforte Cabernet Sauvignon accompanies the meal, and she sets to with a relish. She completely ignores the man beneath the tray, his curses, his pain. She takes her time, clearly savouring each and every morsel, allowing him to watch each bite as it passes from plate, to fork to mouth.

Finally, she turns to him an holds out a forkful of lamb and pesto to him, her brow arched. "I know you've had little enough to eat, Janus. Will you bend your stiff neck long enough to at least show some small courtesy?"

He glares at her, his face twisted with hate. And yet, he hesitates. The aroma of the meat has his parched mouth straining to salivate.

"No? Then perhaps I'll just--"

"Yes, yes, I'll take it damn you," he manages to croak as she begins to draw back the fork.

Nodding, she lets him have the bite, watching him eat with an impassive expression. "Perhaps some wine?"

He nods back, eyes closed as if trying to hold this moment for whatever reason. Taking her glass, she refills it again, then tilts it over his mouth. "Open," she says. When he does, she pours slowly, him gulping down what he could, dribbling wine everywhere in his haste. His stomach clenches and rebels, but he manages to master it, soon draining the glass entirely.

She takes her time, allowing him to eat the remainder of the meal, feeding him with what could be mistaken for sympathy were there to be any semblance of feeling on her face. Her motions are measured and precise, and if seemingly gentle, it is only to prevent the waste of food and drink.

Somewhere in his mind, Mateo starts to believe. Perhaps, just perhaps, that his torment might be at an end. A brief hope begins to build as he eats, and drinks, the wine finally spreading through him with a familiar warmth. Maybe her anger was sated? She had let him go before ... he did his job well ... had an enormous list of contacts ... he could be of use to her yet.
Dread Lady Nathicana
01-09-2003, 02:36
Nathicana watches him, notes the change in his eyes.


"Tell me, Janus," she begins, "These EI's I've begun associating with. What are your thoughts on them?"

He blinks in spite of himself. Why is she askin ... she wants my opinion? Now? She's testing me ... she wouldn't care if she's not letting me go.

"They are not to be trusted," he manages, grimacing and gasping as the vehemence of his statement puts strain on his already tortured form. "How can you know their purposes? They are machines, tools to be used, not allies. They care nothing for the human race, mark my words."

Oddly enough, she nods. "You're right, you know ... at least, some of them aren't to be trusted. Have you any idea the things a good number of our people volunteered for out there with the space fleet? I'm not certain we can even call them human anymore. They've moved far beyond that." She details out the proceedures for him, as she understands them, in all their horrific detail, sparing nothing. Mateo visibly pales again, then takes on a slightly green cast as the visions make his stomach jump and twist yet again.

"You let them do that to your own people?" he gasps. "How c--" He stops himself, clenching his jaw and hoping he hasn't already said too much. "I misspoke myself." He nearly bites off that last statement, his eyes riveted on the ceiling.

"No ... no, you're right. It was a terribly cruel thing I'm certain. And though they were volunteers, and understood ..." she trails off, reaching for a napkin and dabbing at he lips daintily. "At the time it seemed the proper route to take, granting the Dominion in the end, a group of highly effective supersoldiers for our more specialized tasks and such. I take it that the inherent power of such forms would not appeal to you, then?"

"Gods no," he says between clenched teeth, having no loose point on his body to shiver with.

She is quiet for a moment, which grabs his attention. Is she ... going to let me go?

"I want you to know something, Janus," she begins, reaching back to take a shiny scalpel from the tray, slowly twirling with her fingertips as she continues. "You were right about another thing. The rumors of my, ah ... enhancements? All true. You see? All your hard work wasn't for naught."

Nathi rubs her right hand over the back of her left, and up past her wrist, flexing and watching the play of her muscles beneath the skin. "You know, I was awake for all but the last part of the procedure (" She goes on, detailing what she recalls of her operation, and at the same time, reaching back for the bottle of alcohol, washing her forearm with it. She then lays her arm up over his chest, palm up, and draws the scalpel lightly down in a four inch long cut. Her eyes tighten slightly, but she shows no other emotion as she continues to explain about myomer muscle replacements, and annelid-based nodes, and bone-lacing. Forcing herself not to flinch, she makes a second cut across the top of the first, making a 'T' of it. She reaches out with her foot to drag over the box of cotton and clean rags, dampening the flow of blood a bit, massaging the area, then gently peeling back the skin to show him the smooth, bone-white myomer beneath, flexing and once more watching the play.

"Amazing, isn't it?" she says, pressing the cloth to clear away more blood, and holding it up for him to see clearly. "And to think there are those out there for whom all this is nothing."

Mateo listens and watches in horror, unable to draw his eyes away from her cold, detached motions, save for brief glimpses at her equally cold expression.

Why? Why show me this now? How did she stand it? Gods, she's a monster ... she's as much or more machine that those bloody fiends she calls allies. Look at her ... no feeling. Not one whit.

Nathi blinks, seeming to come back from a reverie, and fetches a curved needle and suture thread from the tray. Methodically, she presses the skin back in place, and in neat, even intervals, stitches herself back up. It takes a good while, and in the meantime, she continues to speak with Mateo.

"Feeling better, Janus?" she asks in the same, cool manner she's spoken in all day.

"Please ... no more, I beg. Forgive me, Lady," he begins to stutter, still wincing in pain at his wracked position. "You know I can be of use to you ... I swear, I've learned. I was wrong." Now that he'd begun, his pride fallen away, his voice began to take on a desperate, pleading tone, bordering on hysterical.

"Mercy, I beg ... let me go. I'll serve you faithfully. Never stray again, I swear it." He continues to watch her in undisguised horror. She of course, seems to ignore it completely.

"What assurances can you give me, Janus? I want to believe you ... oh, I do ... but you've shown me just what a treacherous snake you can be."

He casts about for whatever argument might suffice, offering her information, contacts, and money. He launches into detailed lists of secret investments and holdings. He further condemns several Ministers whom he doesn't realize have been already dealt with. She lets him go on and on with it, nodding her head in response, admittedly filing away notes for later use, but seeming to concentrate on finishing the stitches.

"... And that's not all," he says breathlessly, eager to please. She holds up her right hand, motioning for silence. She places the needle and remaining thread on the tray, takes a bottle with a dropper tip, and after cleaning the wound again, seals it with a quick-drying bioadhesive compound, blowing on it softly to help it set.

That done, she turns back to him, and for the first time, smiles.

Mateo's heart nearly stops.
Dread Lady Nathicana
01-09-2003, 07:58
Taking the tray away, she puts it aside. "I think," she says, setting the small bottle back on the table, and instead retrieving another bottle and a large hypodermic. "I think that I will do you an honor, Janus."

She stands, filling the syringe from the bottle, tapping it with a carefully manicured nail to get the bubbles to all go to the top, then pressing the plunger to clear the line. She leans over the prone man, and begins making carefully calculated injections, causing him to shriek and curse yet again. He pales further as he realizes the injections are numbing him, slowly leaching the feeling from his torso.

"I've decided to let you share in my unique experience, my dear. I may not have the skill, the technology, or the knowledge of S.H.O.D.A.N., but ... I think I can at least give you an idea of these things, yes?" She takes a rag, wets it down thoroughly with the ice water, and systematically scrubs his chest and stomach completely clean, ignoring the ragged wails of protest her announcement elicits. She takes the alcohol and splashes it over the area, sanitizing. Next, she brings the tray over closer within easy reach, and sets to reorganizing the items on it, occasionally holding one or another up for perusal.

The man is howling now, his voice thick and rasping from his already raw throat. The curses and epithets he spews from blood-flecked lips run together in an unending litany. She alternatively hums, then sings snatches of one of her favorite operas, Tosca by Puccini, completely ignoring his screams.

"Certa sono del perdon
Se tu guardi al mio dolor!
Dilla ancora la parola
...Che consola, dilla ancora!"

She delicately probes his chest, the muscles stretched taut over the rack. She takes a fresh scalpel, probes with delicate fingers at a point at the base of the breastbone, and begins making a long, slow incision down to his navel. She then makes two more incisions angling out from the top, towards each shoulder, in a standard 'Y' pattern. Next, she draws the another long cut running from each side, effectively underlining the 'Y', connecting all the incisions. Mateo can feel no more than a slight pressure, but he can see every move she makes. And of course, responds accordingly.

Il tuo sangue o il mio amore volea.
Fur vani scongiuri e pianti.
Invan, pazza d'orror,
Alla Madonna mi volsi e ai Santi.

Nathicana dabs at the incisions with a roll of cotton gauze in her left hand, holding the scalpel gingerly, then works her other fingers in a massaging manner over his upper right chest. Carefully, she strips back the skin, using the scalpel to free the tissue as she works, revealing the slick, wet musculature beneath. She repeats the process with each section, laying his chest and upper abdominals open. Drawing out her knife, she takes a butane lighter from the box, and heats the blade thoroughly. With care and precision, she cauterizes the flayed skin, repeating the process til she's satisfied enough with the results, then dabs up with more of the gauze.

L'empio mostro dicea:
Già nei cieli
Il patibol le braccia leva!
...Rullavano i tamburi...
Rideva, l'empio mostro, rideva ...

She takes her time carefully scraping away the large pectoralus major muscle from the left side of his sternum where it is anchored. With a bemused look, she begins to strip it down, peeling layers back from the nerve endings where she can find them, always sure to keep from blocking his view. She lays the red mass back over his shoulder, and goes to work on the next layer of musculature. By this time, Mateo is frothing at the mouth, the numbness unable to hide her unpracticed fumblings with his nerves entirely. With the same slow precision, she loosens the pectoralis minor from its hold on the third, fourth and fifth ribs, laying it back in the same manner as the first. Taking a set of rib shears, she begins at the bottom, clipping first at the eighth rib, just before the serratus anterior muscles begin. Repeating the process with each, clipping as well the end connecting to the sternum, then removing each piece, and setting them in a neat pile on the tray.

"Già la sua preda pronto a ghermir!
"Sei mia?"-"Sì."
Alla sua brama mi promisi.
Lì presso, luccicava una lama...
Ei scrisse il foglio liberator,
Venne all'orrenda amplesso...
Io quella lama gli piantai nel cor."

His shrieks have reached a level of ongoing ragged whistling fits, wracked with gasping and coughing. She cuts through the smooth layers of the intercostalis externus that enclose the body cavity, and peel them back to reveal his inner organs, including his rapidly beating heart.

"I had thought, perhaps, to make my own additions here," she said, pausing in her quiet humming and singing. "But you know, Janus ... having come so far with this, I find myself tiring of the game."

She looks down at her blood-soaked arms and hands, the stains on her clothing, the slowly widening pools of blood on the floor, and back to his ruined chest. Cocking her head to the side, she says, "How ... unexpected." His responses are inarticulate, and weakening as time goes on. She pushes her hands down into his chest, near to his heart, on either side of it. By now the feeling is coming back quickly, and he attempts to writhe and shriek anew at the horrifying sensations, his eyes starting to roll back in his head.

Nathi murmurs softly.

"What a piece of work is man! How noble in reason ... How infinite in faculty. In form, in moving, how express and admirable ... in action, how like an angel, in apprehension, how like a god. The beauty of the world, the paragon of animals ... And yet, to me, what is this quintessence of dust? Man delights not me."

Shaking her head, she carefully wraps her hands around his still beating heart.

"Good bye, Janus. I'll see you in Hell."

She compresses her hands together in a quick, motion, her augmented strength crushing and mangling with ease in a spray of blood. His body stiffens, a final shriek piercing the air, and slowly the last signs of life ebb away with the flowing blood. Mechanically, she leans down, taking several of the clean cloths from the box, and rigidly wiping down her arms, her hands, her face. One by one, she dirties them and lets them fall to the floor, her eyes still on Mateo. She steps back, stumbling once against the stool she'd sat on, sending it rolling away with a clatter. The noise of it in the silence after all the horrendous screaming gives her a start, ripples of chill running along her spine.

Swiftly, she turns, walking out of the small cell with a purpose. Down the hall, and out through the thick door she strides, into the darkness of night. She increases the pace along the span of the covered bridge, the voices of nearby gondolliers and their fare doing nothing to comfort her. Through the hall she goes, paying no attention to the few people still present, nor their wild-eyed looks at her appearance. To the end of the hall, to her office lays at the end of it. She closes and locks the door behind her, and goes straight to the little wine cabinet behind her. Grabbing the first bottle off the shelves, she takes it, opens it and takes a few long, steady swallows, numbly sitting back in the chair behind her desk.

And for a long time, she sits staring blankly out into the blackness, heedless of anything but the bottle, and her increasingly dark thoughts.

---- end ---
01-09-2003, 11:07
OOC: Ooh, very creepy. All she needs is a British accent and she'd be up there with the People's Anthill. I find it's not the graphic nature that freaks me out - anyone can write slasher stuff - but the attitudes of the characters. A++ for Nathi!
02-09-2003, 14:25
Dread Lady Nathicana
20-10-2003, 07:07
<again, historical bump>