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The men moved back and forth, their guns lying at their sides as they pointed the guns at the kids.
Aaryan took a deep breath before he crawled closer to get a closer look. Really, he was mentally kicking himself right now. He couldn’t figure out what had possessed him to stalk out the Blaque Ring and stop their recruiting.
But of course, he did know why he had to do it. For his mother. For his few friends. The Blaque Ring would never stop chasing him until he was in their clutches. And it made all their lives hell.
Anyone that got close to him died or was captured and secretly, he liked to think that it was Jet making his life hell. It helped strengthen his hate. His need to destroy them.
“Please, please just let us go!” One of the kids begged, a girl.
One of the six men sneered at the girl, “You won’t be going anywhere unless Jet says otherwise.”
A frown drooped down her face, her blonde hair whipping in the wind.
“Then just kill us already! Everyone else knows that you kill kids like us!” A boy snapped. The boy glared at them through slits, hysteria wrapping its dirty hands round him.
The Blaque Ring was already getting to him.
A growl erupted from the man. He raised the gun over his head and swung at the boy, the butt of his gun connecting with the boy’s temples.
Aaryan watched in horror as the boy collapsed to the ground, his eyes closing instantly. And the man kept beating on him. Aaryan counted seven, eight times before the man decided to let up a little and still kept going.
But that wasn’t what scared him. What scared him was the look of bloodthirst that flashed in the man’s eyes every time the gun connected with the unconscious body.
“You’re going to kill him! Stop!” The girl screeched, tears flowing down her cheeks.
The man spun around his heels, hatred burning in his eyes. He took a step towards her, but a man held him back.
“It’s not worth it if you’re caught, Jenkins. Just let the boss take care of all this.” The other man insisted.
The man let go of a breath and nodded, “I just want to kill someone so bad! I have the jitters, Bryce. I have it bad!”
The other man, Bryce, sighed, pulling out his gun. Jenkins watched in shock as Bryce pointed the gun at him and held up his hands.
“What’re you doing, Bryce?” His voice cracked.
Bryce shook his head, “I’m sorry, Bryce, but we all know what happens when a man gets that kind of thirst. We don’t want bloodthirsty creatures. We want soldiers.”
Jenkins stood up straight and a wave of calmness hit him. As though he had just come to terms with a fatal condition.
Aaryan’s heart stopped. What had he just witnessed?
“Goodbye, Jenkins.” The man said. A few seconds later, the gun fired off, three bullets lodging themselves, his body lurching back with every shot.
The girl let out a scream as his body hit the ground and gazed up at Bryce in fright.
“Well, that was a shame. I was hoping to see more of a fight.”
Everyone spun around, including Aaryan. A tall, firm built man leaned up against a tree, a smirk spread across his face as he looked at all the shocked faces.
Bryce swallowed hard, “I—Jet…Mr. Blaque, sir… I was just…”
Jet Blaque shook his head and gazed upon the new recruits, “It doesn’t matter. Right now, all I care about is the recruits.”
“Five of you in all, not bad. If any of you were actually worthy of being part of the Blaque Ring. Bryce, kill the girl and that fellow over there. The one lying on the ground.” He said.
Aaryan’s stomach churned, and he knew it was his time. He couldn’t let them kill two innocent children. Especially kids younger than thirteen.
He gulped before stepping out from his cover beneath the bushes. His chest thumped with fear at what he was about to do. He would never see his mother or friends again. He would never be able to come back as the same person he was right now. He knew that they’d change him. He’d heard the stories.
“Stop! Don’t kill them! Take me instead!” He shouted. The tall man turned to him, a grin spreading across his face as soon as his eyes locked on him.
“Aaryan, my son. This is unexpected. I’d almost given up on you.” Jet said.
Aaryan clenched his jaw at the thought. He was in no way his father’s son and he hated being referred to as it!
“I won’t fight you, fat…father. I’ll go with you willingly. I will join the Blaque Ring, but you must promise me one thing.” He said.
Jet raised a brow, “And what will that be?”
“Stay away from my family and friends. That includes these kids here.” Aaryan replied, his voice shaky.
“And what stops me from just taking you now? You have just walked into my camp out in the desolate woods.” He countered.
Aaryan smirked, “The finger on the call button of my phone, the police waiting on the other line.”
Jet laughed, “Very well, played, my son. I suppose that does deserve some reward.”
He turned to Bruce, “Free the recruits, and make sure they get back to their houses safely.”
Sweat beaded Aaryan’s face as he looked around. The other members of the Blaque Ring were drawing closer, their looks of delight disturbing him greatly.
Jet turned back to him, “I’m glad you came to see things my way, Aaryan, but now we must go. The authorities are closing in on us.”
Aaryan’s heart thumped against his chest. Jet turned back to the men again.
“Tie him up before he decides the deal isn’t much worth it.” He commanded. Aaryan’s eyes widened at the thought. What had he just done?
“I’ll see you back at headquarters, my son, but for now, we must separate.”
The screams echoed through his ears, the hope had drained from him long ago. The pain had struck every part of his body so far and he didn’t think it could get much worse. He had already listened to the screams of other children as they begged them to stop. There couldn’t be much more mentally disturbing things they could force upon him. Anything else they could torture him with.
He laid down in the pile of dirt, his tattered shirt sinking deeper into his chest every moment he was there. He couldn’t remember the last time he’d had a full days rest or a full stomach for that matter. He missed his mother, and yet, Jet seemed to have filled him with so much anger that it didn’t hurt as much.
Aaryan wiped the blood from his lip and fought hard to keep from breaking down. It had already happened bunches of times before then, but he hated it every single time. He felt like a wuss. Like a failure. But that was what they wanted him to think. They wanted him to break down. They wanted to cause him all this pain. They wanted to root fear and hate inside him.
And for the life of him, he couldn’t help feeling it. He reminded himself constantly of his mission. To bring the Blaque Ring down. To stop them from spreading evil to the rest of the world. But he felt part of himself slipping away at the cost of being there, and it almost brought him to tears.
The metal barred door swung open to the cell they had kept him trapped in for the past week or so.
Jet peered down at him with a slight smirk. It’d been about two weeks since he’d seen him last. Now all he wanted to do was strangle the man.
But that was just in a fantasy world. Aaryan would never be strong enough to murder this man. He would never be able to move past the fear of becoming him.
Jet pulled him up by whatever was left of his shirt, staring him in the eyes.
“You’ve come so far, Aaryan. I wasn’t sure if there was anything in you worth saving, but it seems like father like son.” He said.
Aaryan’s heart lurched with fury against his chest. If Aaryan had been in full health, he would’ve punched him, but he wasn’t. He was weak. He’d been told that many times and knew it was true. They expected him to finally give in to them and it seemed as though they had succeeded. In some ways, anyway. He still held onto his need to save his family. To bring the ghost organization down. The ghost organization that helped orchestrate many horrid deeds. Things like rape, terrorist attacks, and many, many murders for money.
The world would be a better place without them. And that was kept Aaryan sane. The thought of saving the world, though, he wasn’t sure if he was in too deep.
“They’ve worked you quite well. Now it is time for you to finally become one of us. You’ve been assigned your first mission.” Jet confessed.
Aaryan took a deep breath hoping that he hadn’t heard him right. He didn’t know if he would be able to fight off that kind of responsibility. He had come to the Blaque Ring. If he didn’t do what they wanted him to do, to prove himself, they would throw him back in the cells, to never trust him again. He couldn’t let them do that if he wanted to really succeed in his mission.
Aaryan pulled away from Jet and stood up straight, looking him straight in the eyes, “What do you want me to do?”
Jet’s face morphed into one of great pride and wrapped his arm around Aaryan’s shoulders.
“Let’s go, my son. Make me proud.” He said.
The pain of what he was about to do, ached. It was a dull pain in the overflow of emotions he already had. They had already flipped over, crashing into every other thought he had. They had penetrated everything.
Jet pointed to the table where the man sat at, waiting for him. He wasn’t expecting to be poisoned. He was supposed to be there for a meeting.
“Now go.” He commanded.
Aaryan quickly raced towards the man leaning back in his chair, and peered down at his watch that they had given him. Once he approached, the man smiled.
His blonde, pulled back hair, made him a man of high class. His apparel said otherwise, a cheap linen dress shirt with dark black dress pants. He must’ve been a business investor for the Blaque Ring. He would never know that he was being betrayed right in front of his eyes.
“Hello, young man. I’ve been waiting for you for quite a while. A busy day, I presume?” the man greeted, holding out his hand.
Aaryan frowned, glancing down at the hand. He didn’t deserve his handshake. He didn’t deserve his empathy. He was going to kill him!
“Is everything alright, son? You look a little pale.” He questioned, sitting up from his chair.
“Yeah, I mean, could you go get me something? Please?” Aaryan begged.
The man nodded quickly, frowning before he left. Aaryan reached across the table, his heart pounding, and dumped the powder into the man’s glass. A minute later, the man returned with a sprite and a churro.
Aaryan kept his eyes down, anguish filling him, and waited for the man to sit down as sweat dripped down the side of his face. He quietly hoped to himself that the man would get a call, that he would leave, or the glass was tip over.
He didn’t want to see that. He didn’t want to see this painful death. He didn’t want to kill anyone.
“Boy, am I thirsty.” The man said, smirking at him. He watched as the man picked the glass up and put it to his lips.
His eyes grew hollow a few seconds after, the life leaving them in a rush, slowly trickling away into the cesspool of death.
Aaryan felt sick. He wanted to throw up, he needed to throw up. He needed to wipe his hands clean, to get rid of that awful feeling.
He bent over, dropping to the ground and gagged as the acid rose up his throat. Tears formed in his eyes. He had just killed another human being. And it tore at him.
He took a deep breath before throwing up all the contents of his stomach. He couldn’t do this. He didn’t know what they saw in him. Aaryan was not a killer.
He felt a strong hand grip his shoulder, pulling him off the ground. Jet stood over him, watching in disgust as the pool of vomit slid down the slick ground.
“C’mon, Aaryan. It’s time to return to base.” He said. Aaryan held in every last bit of vindictive thing that wanted to come out his mouth. Every little piece of hatred that he had gathered on him. But it was so hard. He hated the man so much!
“This the new recruit?”
Aaryan glanced up at the man standing before him and Jet. His dark handsome face and coarse hair seemed familiar.
“Yes, my son, Aaryan.” Jet answered the man and give a quick glance to Aaryan. He knew it was some sort of sign to shake the man’s hand or to show him some sort of respect, but he couldn’t bring himself to.
He was a murderer. The spitting image of his father.
He forced a smile and held out his hand to the man, “Nice to meet you….”
The man snorted, “Hank.”
Jet held up a finger, “Well, Hank, we would stay and chat, but Aaryan and I have some business to get to. One involving a certain passing on.”
Hank’s face lit up with excitement, “So he has passed then? He is to…”
Jet shook his head, “He does not know yet, my friend. And I would like to keep it that way.”
Aaryan raised a brow. What could they be talking about?
Hank grinned, “See ya on the other side, Aaryan. I look forward to seeing more great feats of yours.”
Just who was it that he’d been forced to kill?
Aaryan froze in fear, the piercing hot metal only centimeters from his chest. They had stripped him of his ratty shirt and held him down in case of any doubts. They weren’t up for any debates on whether or not he was getting the symbol of the Ring.
“Once this is over, Aaryan, I promise that we’ll do something together. We’ll make up for lost times. We’ll complete a mission together.” Jet said, eager in his eyes.
Jet’s face lit up when he talked about the ‘bonding’ they would be doing, and a pang of guilt hit him hard in the chest. He was deceiving one of the most evil men on Earth. The leader of the Blaque Ring. And all because he felt some sort of connection to Aaryan through the father-son relationship they’d never had.
The metal pushed up against his skin, the smell of scorched flesh filling the air and his screams echoing throughout the room.
He’d never felt something so painful, and yet, he had gone through weeks of nonstop torture. How was that possible?
The men let go of his arms, letting him sink to the floor. And he needed it. Jet watched him through calculating eyes, and he knew that Jet wanted his love. He wanted to feel that there was someone there for him when all this was over.
He almost felt bad about his plan. Almost. The man in front of him didn’t deserve that kind of love. He didn’t deserve sympathy from anyone. Not with all the murders and rapes he had committed, for his own agenda. Aaryan knew that he wasn’t the only child of Jet’s, and he knew that he wouldn’t be the last. But hopefully he could slow down that process.
“Can I go somewhere to rest?” He asked, gazing at Jet. Jet seemed to think about this for a moment, then nodded.
“You can use my room for the moment.” He said and turned to a man beside him.
“Would you like me to prepare a toast?” The man asked, a thick lisp rolling off his tongue.
“No, Aaryan to my room. It seems that the day has worn on him.” Jet replied. Aaryan licked his lips in anticipation.
“I will see you in the morning, Aaryan. We have a big day ahead of ourselves.” Jet bid him farewell.
Aaryan watched the man walk out of the vacant room. Immediately after the man left the room, his eyes scanned the room for a phone. He nearly gave up on the thought when out of the corner of his eye, he spotted an old corded phone hanging on the wall beside the closet.
His heart thumped against his chest at the thought of finally getting out of the place. Of seeing his mom and friends again.
“This is the police station, please state your emergency.”
Aaryan’s heart soared with the sound of the voice on the other line.
“Hello, I’d like to tip off the location of the Blaque Ring leader, Jet Blaque.” He responded.
The line was silent for a moment, “What’s your name? And where are you?”
“My name is Aaryan Blaque, I went undercover about two weeks ago to finally bust the Blaque Ring. I’m not quite sure where we are, though, They seemed to have knocked me out before we got here.” He said, gazing around, hoping to gosh that no one else was around.
“And why would you do that, Aaryan? Why would you rat on your own father? Why take the chance of being caught?”
Aaryan’s heart stopped. Had her voice just suddenly changed? Was that anger in her voice?
The door flew open a few seconds later. Aaryan spun around and dropped the phone instantly.
Jet and Hank glared at him through slits, a baton hanging at Jet’s side.
“I told you that we couldn’t trust him.” Hank said, turning to Jet. Jet didn’t seem to hear him, his eyes still set on Aaryan. As though the thought of Aaryan standing there like that made him irate.
“Did you really think that you could fool me, Aaryan? Did you really think that I’d take you in that easily? I’m the head of a ghost organization for God sakes!” Jet spat.
Aaryan swallowed hard. He had thought that he could fool Jet. Even if it meant using his father-son connection.
“No one ever leaves, the Blaque Ring. No one, not even you.” Jet continued.
Fury erupted in his eyes, “And I can’t believe that you’d actually thought that I’d be so weak to allow you to walk in here to destroy everything! I mean, as far as insults go, that’s one of the worst! And from my own son, no doubt!”
He turned to Hank, “He’s all yours.”
A devilish grin spread across Hank’s face as Aaryan backed away. He knew exactly what they were going to do.
Jet made a tsk tsk sound, “I wouldn’t run if I were you, son. Hank likes a struggle.”
Hank leapt at him, his struggle only lasting about ten seconds before he was pinned to the ground. The baton smashed against his face, then his chest, his ribs, and then back to his face again.
Pain flooded through Aaryan’s body at the numerous hits and he squealed.
Jet sat back, a cackle erupting from his wretched body, “No one ever leaves.”