Tuesday, May 22, 2012

The last target worthy of my blade was number 17.

Name:  Scott Winters.  Age:  28.  Occupation:  None.  Came from a wealthy family, but wanted nothing to do with them.  Fancied himself a philanthropist.  His selfless and caring nature made his fall all the more satisfying. 

He became aware of Father while studying abroad in Germany in early August of 2001.  By the time Father deemed him dangerous enough for termination, it was late November of 2008.  He had been on the run for seven years, dropping off the grid in late 2004; no cell phone, no credit card purchases, no contact whatsoever with his family.  Tracking him was difficult, and while Father could have found him and shown me the Path, I much preferred to do the job myself.  Father had more important things to do.

17 never kept a blog, so I couldn't hunt him via the internet.  As stated above, he had no cell phone or credit cards to track.  I suspect he paid for things by doing odd jobs; he was a resourceful and well-rounded young man.  But in the end, he wasn't resourceful enough.

I found him by a stroke of luck, nothing more.  We both found ourselves in a small-town bakery in a remote rural village.  I exchanged a few brief words with him; without my mask on, I looked like just another traveler, but he was still wary of me.  There was something about me that was setting off the red flags in his head, but I could tell he couldn't figure it out.  After only a few minutes in my company, he beat a hasty retreat, forgetting a bag of donuts on the table.  I now had an excuse to follow him.

When I caught up to him, he was already buckled into his car and about to start the engine.  Poor fool had trapped himself without knowing it.  All it took was one touch, disguised as a knock on his door, to drain the battery.  Father's Blessings come with their perks; wreaking havoc on electronics is just one, and a minor one at that.  The moment he opened his door to take the bag, it was over.

The Path carried us all the way Home.  From there it should've been easy.  Four others had died the way he would, though as I found out, he was more tenacious than I expected.  I had taken him for a coward, albeit a resourceful one.  Nothing I had seen of him so far, from his underwhelming physique to his almost timid movements, betrayed any experience as a fighter.  And yet he fought.

My knife was knocked from my hand immediately, followed by a deceptively strong kick that broke the nose of my mask.  I had fifteen other masks, but each one was, and still is, of great personal value to me.  So I fought back.  I drove my shoulder into his chest and put him through the wall, forgetting my strength for a moment.  I was worried that I had finished the job prematurely, but he dove back through the hole and tackled me to the ground, sitting on my chest and throwing punch after punch into my face.

I felt nothing.  Father had shown me true pain.  I waited for him to tire before pushing up against him, throwing him to the floor.  I pulled my backup weapon, a very small but still deadly knife, off of the clip around my ankle and plunged it into his neck.  He bled out while I prepared for the next stage of my Process.

I do not expect the same challenge from my current Target, who will be number 36, but it will be just as satisfying to bring down someone who fancies himself such a White Knight.

22 days.

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