Chapter Ten: Lights Out

13 Apr

How the hell did this happen?

It was my mistake, having assumed that the demons’ plan involved attacking major corporations, rather than inhabiting them. I wasn’t surprised when a pair of cops had approached me after walking into the Chase Tower and telling the receptionist that demons were planning to attack it, but I was definitely surprised when the cops turned out to be the very demons I spoke of.

Said demons promptly stripped me of Purple Steve, passing him to a nearby office worker, and hauled me into an elevator, then took me up about forty floors and shoved me into the emergent hallway. One of them opened the first door on the right—which happened to be gigantic and made of metal—then goaded me (with significant force) to enter.

I can’t tell you if the room was fashionably designed or not, because immediately upon entering it, the absurdly heavy door was slammed behind me with a sound that you’d find familiar if you’ve ever been bitch-slapped by Odin, and there was no light to speak of.

[Mental note: if I ever make a band, I’m calling it Bitch-Slapped By Odin.]

The room I’d so raucously entered was very small—about two Purple Steves long on either axis—and devoid of decoration (unless it was painted or something; my eyes never quite adjusted). It took me no time at all to realize that I’d been imprisoned.

Luckily, I’d been in situations like this before. About ten years prior, I’d gotten into a fight with my best friend, Fullmoon Scarlet, and he’d locked me in a dimly-lit room with the gored and decaying bodies of his parents for a week. Once I got used to it, the experience actually became quite relaxing and gave me time to come to terms with with the deaths of my own parents. Ever since then, whenever I got emotionally distraught over things, like my brother’s suicide, the double-homicide of my twin younger sisters, and my first girlfriend getting pulverized by a giant boulder, I would lock myself in a small, dark room (decaying bodies not necessary, but recommended as an audience and as sustenance for the unpracticed), and meditate on it for a week or two.

Because of those experiences, I was well-acquainted with the procedures necessary to survive in a tiny dark room for however long I’d need to. My only worry was that every other time I’d been imprisoned, it’d been by myself or a friend, so I could count on escaping at any time. These guys probably weren’t going to give me such courtesy.

Knowing that panic would be counter-productive, I calmed myself and assumed a meditative position while considering the possibilities. Some three or four hours later, I was surprised by a sudden voice echoing from the walls.

“Cirno! I finally found you!”

“Purple Steve?! Are you here? No, then I’d be able to see; where are you?”

“I’m in another part of the building—one of the basement floors. They’ve got me on some sort of sterile operating table along with a lot of other weird-looking weapons.”

“How come I can—”

“Hear me? Because I’m disembodied energy. I can pretty much be anywhere.”

“Shouldn’t the walls be glowing or something?”

“Don’t misunderstand the nature of my being—I’m not a lightning bolt at all times. While I can remain in the form of a lightning bolt and travel as one through conductive elements, I can also leave that form and travel elsewhere.”

“So right now you’re in the walls? Can you control the door or anything?”

“No, god damn it, pay attention! I don’t just ‘control’ physical objects. It wouldn’t be in this door’s nature to simply open by itself, so I can’t cause it to do so. Lightning is a unique case where controlling the amount of energy being poured into it can strengthen or weaken it.”

“Okay, I think I get it now.”

“I’ve tried to melt this table, but whatever it’s made of doensn’t fuck around. It isn’t conductive, either. As a pole covered in lightning, I’m currently immobile.”

“Damn. And I haven’t been able to think of an escape plan yet, either.”

“Same here. I’m totally stumped on this one.”

The room fell silent as Purple Steve and I returned to our thoughts.

Not five minutes later, I was slightly-less-surprised by yet another sudden voice echoing from the walls.

“Cirno Excalibur.”

“Yyyyeeesss?”

I figured there must’ve been a speaker installed in the ceiling, but I couldn’t tell.

“Good, we can hear one-another. I’m going to be asking you some questions.”

I smiled wryly—it all came to me in that moment.

I know how I’m going to get out of here.

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