…..It got closer, he was undecided as to whether he should go up the stairs now if there was something following closely behind he risked getting attacked at a critical moment…..
Looking up the stairs once more, there was nothing there, he decided to move on, but only made it one step before a growl and a flash of movement tore at him. Will quickly raised his arms, charged with enough energy to block the claws that scratched at him. It was a creep, a small creature, four legged and ferocious, it was one from the factory in Tartu. So they have reached Derrick after all. Surprise was likely gone now, stealth was unnecessary. Will poured as much energy into his body as he could, there was no time for restraint. The creature clawed at him, sparks of energy from its claws flew, but as it got stronger and forced Will back towards the wall, he to gained more power until he took a quick step back forcing the creature to step forward quickly to follow. This gave Will a split second to pull out one of his blades, but the creature hit his arm firmly, his shield fell, the blade fell to the ground, and a backhand from the other claw caught Will on the jaw. He was dazed and now ninety degrees to his left, no longer in battle stance. The creature leapt onto his back, its claws sinking into his skin, his shield giving way. He yelled in pain, but keeping his cool, he turned quickly and smashed the creature against the wall. He repeated the action twice more before it let go, gasping in pain. Will scrambled to the floor, grabbed his crescent blade, his energy coursed through his body as he turned. It leapt at him once more, he held up the blade and plunged it into the creature’s chest, its claws scratched at him for a moment, but it fell back in pain. Crawling away, the blade stuck into its chest. It looked down, panic in its large black eyes. The blade wasn’t in as far as Will had hoped, it would survive the attack and heal if he gave it a chance.
He was cut and bleeding, his left shoulder now beginning to hurt once more, he got to his feet, the creature, relieved as it realised it was not mortally wounded, withdrew the blade from its chest, its thick hide cracking and oozing blood as it did so. It smiled up at Will, he could sense the power coursing through its body, it was ready to attack again, but he sensed his own power as well, it was concentrated in the little monsters hands. No, it was in the blade which the creature held, how could this be? He had transferred some of his power to his weapon? This wasn’t possible. Suddenly, the power flung from the blade as if on a timed released spring. The creature grunted, it looked down in confusion, the whip of energy had sliced right through its chest, it looked up to Will with a mix of anger and fear as the two halves of the once powerful creature fell to the ground.
Will took two deep breaths, but knew he had no time to rest. The creatures on the bottom floor were on the move, he picked up the blade, withdrew his second, ignoring his pistol for now and ran up the stairs. Second door on the right. He could sense the creature inside clearly, this had to be Derrick’s office. And he knew exactly who was behind the door.
He kicked the door in with a supercharged boot, sparks flew, chipped wood crashed away as he tore inside.
Derrick stood behind his desk, a glass of wine spilt as if he had just stood up. In front of the desk holding a sidearm and pointing it at Will was Angel.
‘Good to see you again,’ the creature said in a thick Slavic accent, ‘this will be the last time.’
‘Indeed it will.’ Will ran at him, Angel fired three shots from the gun as the distance closed between them. One missed, the second was deflected with a spark from a crescent blade and the third went over Will’s head as he ducked now within striking distance. Memories of Natasha and Jovan falling to the ground flashed in his mind, his eyes and stomach burned with a desire for revenge, Will came up from a slight crouch, his two blades sliced one after the other, the arm holding the gun fell away at the elbow, the gun hit the floor, the arm did not. Angel cried out in pain as Will grabbed the arm, turned it around and jammed it firmly into the creature’s mouth. It had begun to change to its natural form, razor teeth causing blood to flow from the severed limb. Will then kicked the vile monster in the stomach as hard as he could, spun and flashed a whip of energy in one smooth motion. Angel flew backwards, shock in its eyes before the energy sliced off its head. The body hit the desk, Derrick jumped back, the head hit the ground finally losing the arm before rolling past Will towards the shattered door.
‘Now then,’ Will said, panting and sweaty. ‘One question before you die Derrick, where did the other half of the shipment go? You’ve been trying to eliminate rival gangs for years, but then arm the Russian gangs with enough firepower to rival an army, for what?’
‘You do lack imagination,’ Derrick said calmly fixing his short hair and tucking in his shirt. ‘Destroying gangs was never the end of my operation, getting the streets in order was just window dressing, a distraction for any rivals like yourself. My power now is that I can control the European Union, NATO and soon the European bank. I have enough shapeshifters planted in key areas, I can get anything important signed, stamped, voted on, that’s true power. So all I need to exercise that power, is a crisis, say, a Russian army snuck into Europe, dressed as civilians, causing mayhem, murder, the sovereignty of countries like Estonia, now a member of the EU and NATO will be threatened.
‘Russian army? It’s not the Russians that are doing it, it’s just the local gangs.’
‘Of course you fool, but the western media will put two and two together, and get five, there will be a call for NATO to step in, then with a few correct votes, an army will be planted throughout Eastern Europe, an army that will unwittingly be under my command. Even when peace has been restored, they will need to stay for peacekeeping, I’ll see to that, then I can do whatever I wish!’
‘How can you be sure that it will go off without a hitch, are the Russian gangs ok with this?’
‘Well I am paying them, and more importantly, once I stop paying them, they will disperse, throughout Eastern Europe, perhaps back into Russia.
‘Then you’ll have hundreds of heavily armed men roaming around.’
‘A minor concern.’
‘But where are the other guns?’
‘Ah, that’s simple, that’s for my people. No point having the Russians shoot at nobody, we need to fire back, create the illusion of civil war.’
‘You will condemn thousands to death for your own desire for power?’
‘Of course, only when I’m in charge of Europe will I be able to bring peace.’
‘What makes you so sure you can hold it all together, no one will even know you’re pulling the strings.’
‘You overestimate the human institutions, all these things, NATO, UN, EU, they are all just letters, a bunch of old people sign some paper and ‘things’ happen. They happen because humans allow it to happen, there is no resistance, if I’m signing the papers by proxy, then I will have control.’
‘Humans,’ Will muttered.
‘You’ve abandoned your humanity, you’ve sold us out.’
‘Not so, I’m doing it for peace, left to their own devices, humans rip each other apart, I will stabilise Europe for the first time in its history, don’t you see? No more war!’
‘You’re mad, I thought you were an ego maniac, but you’re actually mad.’
‘Well, this has been a fun conversation, but despite orders, I think it’s time to kill you now.’
‘We’ll see who’s walking out of here.’ Will exchanged a blade for his 9mm and pointed it at Derrick’s head. ‘This time I’m going to check.’ Derrick smiled in reply, Will immediately found out why. With a burst of light in his sixth sense, Will realised that a creature was now in the room. It had stayed hidden until it was ready to strike. It was the enforcer from the factory, gratefully it was not Blaine. So it to had returned to Derrick whilst the others had stayed to hunt him down.
The creature was large, head and shoulders above Will, it was strong to, he could sense that. He dropped the gun to the ground, it would do no good against such a monster, retrieved his second blade and charge headlong at it. He yelled, the creature growled and a bright spark exploded as they collided. Without body armour, Will had to rely on his powers and being faster than the monster. His coat was slashed to pieces by its claws, he sliced it back, but not enough to slow it down. More sparks flew as energy smashed against energy. With surprising speed it brought its large leg up and kicked Will front on, he managed to block enough of the energy from the blow that would likely smash through concrete, so that his body was in tact, but he was still flung back onto the ground. His blades fell away, he was short of breath. He had to act quickly. He reached out with his hands and found his gun, that would have to do. Thinking quickly, he turned the gun on Derrick, the creature halted. Will looked back and forth between his two enemies, one behind him, one in front. Derrick smiled at him, and when he turned away for a moment Derrick had retrieved his own gun, an old service pistol from his days in the Serbia. It was well maintained, he kept it as a reminder of where he came from
‘You know if you shoot me,’ he said with thick Slavic accent, ‘my guard here will tear you to shreds.’
‘But if you put down your gun, I give you my word that I will put down mine, then you can continue the fight.’
‘Sure, I like the sport.’
‘And if I win, what’s stopping you from killing me?’
‘Well, it’s not the most generous offer I grant you.’
Will paused, he didn’t have much of a choice. He eyed Derrick, Derrick stared back, coolly.
‘Very well,’ Will said as he slowly lowered the gun, Derrick did the same.
Will removed the clip from his pistol, clasped it in his left hand, the gun stayed in his right. He charged his power as intensely as he could. The enforcer growled at him no doubt sensing him regain his energy, he would want to continue immediately. Will slid the clip of ammunition across the floor, it tapped against the clawed foot. He then rolled over and covered his head. Derrick hesitated a moment then ducked below the desk, the enforcer took another moment to realise that the energy in the clip by its foot was a huge pool of power, it put up a shield, tried to run, but it didn’t make a single step before the supercharged bullets exploded in the magazine, the room rained down with gore. Once it settled, the creature was nowhere in sight.
Derrick began to panic, he could only hope his enemy was claimed in the explosion. He poked his head above the desk, gun in hand, a click told him he was out of luck. He looked down the barrel of the gun.
‘One in the chamber?’ he asked weakly. Will nodded as he pulled the trigger. The bullet crashed into the Derrick’s right eye, his head rocking back, then the energy in the bullet exploded, his head splattering across the bloody room.
Will sensed the creatures from the bottom floor were now on the top floor he was out of time. He picked up his blades, discarded his pistol, removed a finger from Derricks’ body then ran to the window. Smashing through it, he attached a clasp to the sill, a cable tore out of his belt and a simple flick of a switch stopped him from hitting the ground as shouts came from the window above him. He disconnected the line and ran into the streets.
Dawn was warming up the cold night. Will was exhausted, his left shoulder ached, it would take days before it healed enough for even basic use, but he was determined to dig the hole himself. He owed his friends at least that much. He hadn’t helped to bury Natasha but had at least fought to stop her body being taken away.
Jovan’s body lay in the fresh soil, the skyline of the city of Tallin stood in the distance.
‘What a night,’ he exhaled deeply.
‘You said it,’ Chen cringed as he sat up, his thin shirt bulged around his bandaged stomach. He watched as Will placed Derrick’s finger onto the ground, it hadn’t dissolved, he’d definitely killed the human, the original man himself.
‘Finally,’ he whispered.
‘So, the Russians got the message it seems,’ Chen checked his phone.
‘Good,’ Will replied. They had managed to make contact with the Russian gangs and told them that there was a plan to double cross them from Derrick’s syndicate, they had left an envelope with all the documents they needed at an agreed location, it told of the plan to only sell half the weapons to the Russians and more importantly where the other weapons were. The Russians picked it up and believed them. Will didn’t have the strength to track them down, this was the next best thing. They had moved against Derrick’s group, they had destroyed or confiscated the weapons. Now there was a heavily armed gang in Estonia, but they didn’t want a war, it was the best result they could hope for.
There was still an issue of Hans Ulrich, the only official that they knew was a shapeshifter, but it was clear that fighting Derrick’s group on the streets would no longer suffice, he had to go to the high end of town if he was going to stop the Nameless. And he was more determined than ever to win. It might take another two years, but he wouldn’t stop.
‘How Could This Happen!’ The voice coming down the radio frothed with rage. Blaine didn’t blame him. He was huddled into his resting place for the day after a disaster of a night. Three of his team killed, and Derrick eliminated, their plans in tatters.
‘I’m sorry sir,’ he growled back, timidly.
‘You are a fool Blaine, I should never have trusted you with this.’
‘The human is weak, I wish to track him down.’
‘No! I wont trust you with that either, you’ve done enough damage. Perhaps it is time for me to come out of the shadows.’
‘You will take command?’ Blaine asked dubiously.
‘I was always in command, now the world will know it. I will contact you shortly. Remember Blaine, I am The Leader.’
(C) T.W. Norrich ‘The Nameless Saga’ 2017