Stopping The Clock



Scene Title Stopping The Clock
Synopsis Left alone to die in the darkness, Cardinal's dreams are stirred by a Ghost…
Date June 9, 2009

The Happy Dagger : Basement

The steady ticking of the clock's second hand is like thunder through the classroom, each harsh clack followed by silence that never full stills before the next second passes. It grates on the nerves like nails on a blackboard. One minute to midnight. Somehow, he knows that's all he has.

Cardinal's fingers drum against the desk anxiously, brushing over wood long scratched and smoothed and re-scratched by generations of children. He tore his gaze away from the clock upon the wall, staring at the face of the nun that paced before the desks. A nun whose face was that of John Logan beneath the pristine white of the wimple. "Now, children," he smirked, "Open your bibles to Matthew, Twenty-five, Thirty."

And throw that worthless servant outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. reads the passage, the words coming to the man without even needing to look at it. A whimper draws his attention, and he looks to one side.

A leather bible whose trim is golden sits open upon a young woman desk, her lips trying to form the words as if to read them, but all that comes from her lips is blood - crimson spots of gore that drip and spill over that holy writ, covering more and more of the text. Sensing eyes upon her, Abigail looks up with a betrayed look in her eyes, tears streaking her cheeks as she opens her tongueless mouth as if to accuse him.

Cardinal closes his eyes, turning to look away. Then he opens them to see Deckard leaning in close beside his desk, the one empty eye socket bleeding down his face as he intones gravely, "If a blind man leads a blind man, both will fall into a pit." Matthew 15:14. He pushes up from the chair, stumbling away from the other man and turning towards the sound of Eileen's weeping, curled up in the corner with blood drenching her hands. Beside her, Logan-in-habit gathers a leash into his hand and pulls Zuleyka closer to where she crouches at his feet, gazing at him adoringly through a face blue and purple from beatings. "I should thank you, Richard," he purrs, "You bring me such wonderful toys…"

No no no— He lunges for Logan; caught in mid-leap by Eileen, who uncoils from her corner to tackle him to the ground. Where her hands fall, skin bruises, splits, bleeds, and Cardinal screams. "I'm sorry," she whispers hoarsely as she wrestles with him, "I'm sorry." The rest of the room holds horrors, glimpsed momentarily as he struggles. Xiulan nailed to the wall, stripped beneath the neck of her skin into a macabre grotesquery, Elisabeth laying dead in a corner with her throat torn out, Pearl smoking in the doorway as he watches the struggle coolly over a cigarette's coiling smoke. Fedor gazing out the window as if he couldn't see any of it, scribbling pictures of bombs and planes on a piece of paper. Matt Parkman and Adam Monroe, hands about one anothers' throats. Thirty-five empty seats in the classroom.

Thump. His thrashing head hits a pair of boots. He looks up as blood bubbles on his tongue, gazing up at their owner. Teodoro Laudani looks down at him, pitiless, uncaring.

Wake up.

He does. But the pain doesn't go away. If anything, it gets worse.

Sharp, aching, real pain searing through his nerves as he tries to draw breath into his one good lung, tasting copper on his tongue as he rolls over in a pool of his own blood, the pressure against the grievous wound burrowed into his side and spread like a cancer causing him to choke on a scream. He's dying. Alone. The floor is dirty, stained, dark…


Desperation. He reaches out, a red-stained hand grasping for nothing, and finding it. The shadows spill over him, deepening, thickening about him. Richard Cardinal ceases to be, spilling into a pool of not-light, submerging the agony of physicality for the merciful lack of sensation that shadow offers. Instinctive, driven by the animal urge to escape, to get away, to flee the reaching fingers of death. Dark matter that sweeps across the floor in a flicker, nothing more than the movement of a shape before a lamp before it's gone.

As if he never was, and never mattered. And the clock hands of death stop still… for a little while.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License