Hellsing Fan Fiction ❯ Our Beginning ❯ First Sight ( Chapter 3 )

[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]

The echo of the fallen grating faded to leave only a low hum of clouded bulbs and old wiring as she straightened back to standing. She didn't know her way through these forgotten corridors, but the fact that there was electricity at all confirmed that she wouldn't be alone much longer. They were coming.
Time was at her back as she broke into another run, desperation mounting as identical doors of darkened steel swept by at either side. The last cell, she had to trust that. There'd be no time if the men were already unlocking the passageway. If they were already coming down that frightening staircase she'd once stood atop as a child.
I never dared go any further. I don't know where I am
If two worlds could ever exist within one home, then this was surely it. There was no color here, none at all. One of the few observations she had time to make. The red ribbon at her collar and the blue of her eyes and skirt were just an aberration in all this grey. Though perhaps simply breathing was the first quality that had declared her an intruder here.
But for a moment the striking sight of the full sized pentagram had caught that breath away, instilling a silence in her equal to that of the stone and metal all around. Her earlier snap judgment about the colorless décor was now not entirely correct she saw. Because there…there on this passage was something vibrant at least. Enough age dried crimson to make her freeze before it.
God, it's
This must be what she sought then, there could be no other reason she had time to think of. The exact purpose of the symbol was unknown. But a single door was the only way in or out any of these cells. So why else make such a massive marking right on top of one unless a barrier is what it was? To keep something out or in
Can I pass?
Her fingertips tested the portal's large handle cautiously, as if the symbols may deny her entrance violently. They didn't of course, but her body seemed to be taking a growing aversion to the situation regardless. The odd sensation was hard to put to words, but “heavy” was the only way one might possibly describe it. The air itself felt heavy here and her entire body disliked the idea of going any farther.
But reason continued to remind her that Father never would have expressly mentioned she come here in last hope if something harmful was all that awaited her. So that faith -coupled with a dwindling window of escape- bid Integra to silence the instinctive knotting in her own stomach as she pushed forward, opening the aged fixture with an echoing creak as its hinges grated loudly upon themselves.
For all her supposed bravery though, what first met her eyes on the other side was none too exciting. Only another set of steps leading down into even more blackness. Yet again her body still tried to beckon her away as she stood tentatively on the threshold of it staring blankly down. She'd just have to continue. There was no other remaining option.
When fumbling her hand briefly along the gritty wall yielded no feel of any type of lightswitch, her heart rate was merely forced to increase even more in protest as she entered almost blindly. Her eyes could only rely on the hazy glow still filtering in from the hallway now seeming so far behind her.
How many years had it been since anything had ever stirred the air in the slightest here? The scents of dust and rot were pungent, stinging at her nose as she began to shallow out her breathing to compensate. Mold and dampness she may have expected. Like any cavern that never saw a moment's sunlight. Dank and overbearing went fine with a dungeon too after all. But it was the troublesome aftertaste that she could not reason.
When the girl reached the bottom of the steps though, her pupils had finally dilated enough to focus on the area of the wall which was darker than the rest. It was then that she had her answer, though she still may not accept it yet. A suspecting feel only ran down her spine as she moved warily closer, noticing next the straight flow of white sitting atop the rest of that vague outline.
With either more courage or grandest foolishness, she actually kneeled outright in front of the thing. Any moment now her eyes would finally convince her mind why there'd been a scent she couldn't give name to in the air. Why she wouldn't have known it before. So simple of course…
Blue eyes widened slightly as all evidence was finally accepted and pieced together. Two empty black sockets only met her pain of disappointment in no apology.
A tomb was what the scent was. Death was what it was…a dead thing to save her! All this running, all this hope…everything to gain her only wasted time! How stupid. How bloody stupid could she be? She'd misunderstood father somehow, she knew she must have. She'd spent her only chance and lost it. Now fate would have her. And at the mercy of her uncle's hatred there was only one possible ending.
The girl felt the tell tale sting in the corner of her eyes as this collapsing future began to settle in as reality. Like anyone else in such a snare, she didn't find herself quite ready to die. She really didn't. But what could be done now? As her lips began to turn downward in a jerky, involuntary frown and a lump welled further in her throat, she knew she was on the verge of echoing sobs off the walls.
Such a childish display would hardly matter now. But still something kept her from completely allowing that bottom out of self-pity, damp eyes instead trying to focus in distraction towards the gaunt frame remaining so unsympathetic beside her.
What was it? Integra's eyes traveled more carefully over the grotesque thing, somehow trying to understand its place in her failure. Its appearance was not really like the withered husks she'd seen in the museum. Those shriveled things that looked more liked tanned hide wrapped in the remnants of linen rather than this creature with its long lengths of silver hair and dried white skin.
Upon its face was the only visible remains of this skin though…all else was shrouded in dust covered black. Black leather tightly encasing its entire body, with straps like she'd never seen lacing back and forth between the too long limbs. Tied? Is that what it was?
I wanted shining armor…
Reality could always only trounce on one's dreams.
“You've given us quite a chase my little Fraulein…”
Her body jerked at the gunmetal's click as she immediately turned to face the blackguards now descending the staircase. She should have used her time to pray instead of staring at some broken mystery that could help her none. But too late for that now.
The girl came to standing, fully knowing what may happen. She tried to transfer the bit of strength still there into a righteous voice. “Uncle! So is this really what you've been reduced to? Why!? How can you even call yourself a man!?” There was no intention of pleading. He was a coward and she would only tell him so. Even if he gained all he wanted from these actions, no one could ever honestly call him anything else. Not when his prestige would be taken through the murder of a child.
Richard's face just twisted up into a look of deranged simplicity, unknown if by his own madness or her words finding their mark. “For England of course my dear, sweet little niece. Only one can lead this family on…even by asking such idiocy, you prove you are not of the caliber to do so.” He was close enough now. The pistol whip to her face renewed his eagerness well enough. “So I must serve my God, my Queen, and my country! You think I would not kill to protect these things?”
Power…it means everything to everyone.
The blow to her face only stunned. His strength wasn't enough to fracture bone. But the gunshot that came next was nearly simultaneous with her scream as flesh tore away in the bullet's heat. Was it his intention just to graze her? Yes, to make this slow…but sadism was not yet a trait she would have understood. Integra could only fall back to the cold floor, eyes shining with their own tearful curses as she gripped the searing wound across her arm.
Still she did not think to quiet though. The truth was her duty to state if no other defenses remained. “Then this is why Father chose me! You are weak, Uncle! You are nothing worth leading this house!”
He wanted her to keep with her screeching. Like a wounded bird fluttering helplessly before him now. After so many years in the shadow of other men…this was practically his divine right. To tear apart piece by piece the last remains of that goddamned man. Of that pompous fool who'd had everything tossed right into his lap. Yes, he wanted that man's seed -this little cunt- to keep right on crying. Scream for him even. Her glare only brought further excitement down his body as he raised the gun again. No one would ever find her…she wouldn't even have a face by the time he was done.
“I think your ear shall go next…”
She gritted her teeth through more hateful tears, awaiting the trigger's second pull. Integra found she couldn't close her eyes though, even when her only focus was nearly directly down the barrel of that still smoldering pistol. She never chose to hide that way. Blue eyes still intent even after all others in the room had gone wide…when they first heard that sound.
Something wet scraped the floor directly behind her. A sloppy thing her brain couldn't definitively attach to any prior memory, and there was little extra room to process the sound by way of deduction at the moment. Not with a gun still staring her in the face.
But their faces only kept worsening. So strange of a scene where the one seemingly in the most danger would shift to be the calmest. The more seconds that passed -admittedly feeling like entire minutes- the more she dared to lose focus on Uncle though and the more human curiosity itself told her to turn and see what should be so fearful. To see whatever a pack of murderers would be this naturally afraid of, even here when they were already the victors over their own cornered quarry.
Little dogs run from bigger ones…don't they?