Rote’s Crypt

Scene I

  “Dead, for some time I’d say…”, the utterance crackled with sibilance through the radio, “…starting to smell t[oo]” the last of the words cut off abruptly like his finger came off the transmit button – he’d probably triggered nausea trying to overcome it and relate it over the two-way and had to pull the radio away from his face to vomit.

“Okay no-one else go in there til he comes out”, the order from the captain was like a paid holiday and he quickly picked up on this sharply saying, “and nobody relax – I still want you ready for anything!!”

“FFS!!!”, hissed one of the squad – the abbreviation intended to imply he was paying more than ample attention and that sibilant consonants used over the radio to relate a ‘ssssmell’ would open up the alimentary to everything dispersed in air.
 – He’d have been better saying, “dead, a while gone I reckon”, through the smallest parting in his lips & from the side of his mouth, then the radio would have been out the way too if he had to vomit – some people have all the luck though.

Obviously the captain was taking it as reluctance or beligerence and reprimanded impatiently, “Shut it!!! – stay on your toes and only say something if it’s important!”

 The briefing told of the location, the only [known] means of entrance and what they figured from evidence and reports that they should have prepared for – this had seen a ten man squad assembled, all armed, medics on standby and fire crews with cutting equipment – a copter circled overhead too.  The culprit at large was deemed either inside or watching the whole thing go down – somehow proud of what was unfolding like a sick masterpiece of sinister artwork both parodying and extolling death simultaneously, giving in to it’s finality through overwhelming gore and yet somehow illustrating the transcendence into another state of matter – the victims to present were splayed in gratuitously violent positions of graphically sexual & vulgar postures of power, weapons in their hands or holding the murder weapon itself, usually something impaling them or severing the body – ruling out a suicide, but leading of course to questions about drugs numbing the pain and dulling the sensibility enough to actually give scope to the possibility….

Except the tip offs were the same voice – each time with a cryptic clue and tying in with the scene that was discovered – the voice of the murderer and still at large…

“Some of these people were well-respected in the community…”, offered a pc, “…their faces were stitched as if a professional mortuary attendant had done it properly – they looked like the pictures most people remember in the press, smiling, or even laughing – with the mouth open, you can get that kind of thing done now in your lunch hour though, ‘suture lifts’ they’re called”.

“okay!”, said the captain, “thanks for all that – spend a moment in quiet readiness now….”, addressing everyone…

…And so the waiting went on and the radio was silent – ten more seconds that seemed like a hundred elapsed and then the captain went on the radio, “…is there anything else…?”

“can you hear me?”

“pffffkzt!”  the radio seemed to express an electronic glitch, like signal or power loss and it was once again silent

More than a couple of the waiting squad members would have said it sounded like that meant they were going in blind and they didn’t like the sound of it – like the captain’s voice coming out the radio at the other end helped locate it in the dark, and then it had been stamped on and crushed to uselessness underfoot….

Hands tightened into fists or around torches and pistol grips and deep breaths were taken – if the culprit was savouring this anywhere it should be preferably close enough to sense all this….  …and sure enough he looked to one side and smiled wryly with the hidden side of his face as he brought one hand up and adjusted the peak of his standard issue police cap as he flipped open the stud clasp of his gun holster and serenely gauged the response from the other squad members.

 

 

Scene II

Now it seemed like no further response was forthcoming, the captain was thinking ‘procedure’, ‘orders’ and ‘circumstantial approach’ – just a case of issuing instructions to anyone listening, but of course it had to come from a plan…

Rote gently caressed the grip of the pistol with his palm just below the index and middle fingers awaiting all this enlightenment – just what would they do? – and then took the studded clasp and fastened it back shut as if a little impatient.

The captain duly noted this and took a deep breath in through the nose…

Simultaneously looking round it became apparent to Rote that only the copter could see the squad – the fire and ambulance crews were at a safe distance and would be brought in only when it was declared safe or in a dire medical emergency allaying all other reasons for not going in with the police….  Unclasping the holster again and certainly aggravating the captain, his hand went to the gun and the captain lined up a stare that said ‘do not play with that while I start issuing orders’….
 …It was like choreography, Rote would have actually written exactly that stare on to the captain’s face, the way the eyes came into contact with his and the brow appeared furrowed before it was, as the meaningful expression through eye-contact transmitted, those words of warning he was beginning to like the idea of hearing…

…going for the gun, he raised a knowing smile in response, then raised the gun loaded with twelve rounds and brimming with confidence, safe in the knowledge everyone else still had their’s holstered – they had only been here minutes and no formal decision about the next step was taken pending a response from the man on the scene – he opened fire like a rapid spitting snake systematically picking each of the others off with a clean head shot, by the time he got to the last couple they had begun crouching and totally lost control of the coordinated effort required to respond, they were looking sheepish and as if they would go for their guns if they could remember how and where on their person to get it – there was so little resistance as the last man went down it seemed suddenly very slippery, like a grave uncertainty about how dead they actually were or if there was anyone left to kill….  Not one of them had unclasped their holster and in the two to three seconds it had taken to dispatch them all they had each done hardly more than take a single shock-surprised step as they looked increasingly bewildered at the source of the commotion.  It had been rapid though and along with the train of thought now leaving Rote did a sudden crouch manouver, then with a sideways lunge and forwards propulsion, took off into the crypt looking for all intents and purposes like the squad had just come under fire from within and he was the only survivor now becoming the hunter as he ran forward pointing the gun out in front as he dodged from side to side convincingly with the advance.

…And he was in.  No shots from outside would have been heard, not because it was out of earshot but the officer in there was dead, Rote’s special own brand of electronic wizardry had ensured the radio frequency would trigger a triangulation pinpoint device deathtrap and he expected to find the officer in two pieces, one of those pieces being his head – such is the reliability of the samurai sword, and especially with the hydraulic servo that wielded it.  Sure enough, the officer was out but not down – cleanly impaled in the yard square area where his two-way would have triggered the mechanism and the head on the floor from the swipe of the blade, decapitated so quickly it had rolled almost exactly as planned, the pressure from the jugular pushing it over to the right and back behind the shoulder – a chalked area with a shaded centre allowed for the surmised accuracy to be gauged…, if not a bullseye it was as close as you could get without knowing exactly who would be sent in to investigate.  Blood had spurted on to the ceiling and before the head was completely off the body had at first sprayed outwards on to the walls, the later weakening pulses (and due to the impaling of the body also causing blood loss) had left the body drenched down the torso and one leg.

   The machines had won again – this one was like a futuristic Apollyon sneering with technical superiority as it beleaguered and tortured a meek christian brave through whom it’s hollow & barbed spikes were now impaled, razor sharp slits like an amalgamation of vampyric fangs and hypodermic needles drained blood along the spikes and into a recepticle artistically made to look like the bowels of the machine…

Rote nevertheless believed that christians had Apollyon [/Abbaddon] at the very moment when his superiority was asserted – it meant he needed the christians.  ‘Just like Rote’, thought Rote smiling brainlessly like some hapless naive innocent…

 

Cannot surely say whose copropertyright this image is, but I Rote’s Crypt when I saw it;
apollyon

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