The Deal: Muirmill Asylum Part 4

Friday, 15 January 2016

As the beast tried to push its way into the small room, I could feel the gold ring on my right index finger vibrate and grow warmer as it got closer. I quickly realised I was faced with a serious problem.
   The ring granted me the power to knock that thing back to hell, but it had seen me. It knew I was in the asylum prowling for information on my wife even though the dark lord had told me to leave well alone or face dire consequences. If it survived it would surely report everything back to Satan who would in turn come looking for me.
   On the other hand if I did actually kill it then Satan would want to know why the asylum was minus a Grimoyle. Which once again would most likely end with him turning his attention on me. Basically I was damned if I did and damned if I didn’t.
   The creature, its razor sharp teeth bared for the world to see, managed to force the rest of its body into the room and within seconds I was back peddling as it charged towards me.
   As I tripped and fell down on my ass with a hard thump, I used my shaking left hand to trace the number eight across my right wrist. The sign for infinity. I prayed to any God that would listen that the protective symbols tattooed on to my body would really work as promised.
   There was a sudden rush of extreme warmth through my body. I could see my skin with a strange golden aura, and the symbols on my forehead felt like they were being branded in to my head.
   I looked up from where I was now sat on my ass just in time to see the Grimoyle prepare to take a swing at me. Without warning it stopped mid motion and its grotesque face looked confused.
   ‘Where are you, you pathetic little man?’ The creature snarled as it sniffed at the air, trying to pick up my scent again.
   There was little time for me to marvel at the fact I was now invisible. Well to the demons of hell at least. The sacred symbols had worked their magic just like the monk Pertilius had said they would. I could only hope I wasn’t premature in using them. I had wanted to keep it as a surprise for the day when I knew I would have to challenge Satan for both my wife’s and my own freedom from his murderous, torture filled kingdom of despair.
   Unsure how long the magic would last for, I quickly got back to my feet and made my way around the demon. I was hoping to make it to the doorway and out into the hall without incident.
   I was just a few feet away from the hall when the creature let out a loud roar and my heart began to race again as I was sure the magic had worn off and once again I was in the demons sights. I turned just in time to see it raise a heavy, muscular leg which it brought down on the desk with enough force to leave an impression on the concrete floor. The air filled with the sound of wood splintering under the sheer force and I had to shield myself from the flying shards.
   Enraged I quickly stepped aside, fist clenched and ready to move to plan b. I was going to have to kill the bastard. But surprisingly it stormed back to the doorway, forced its self out of the room and went back to where ever it lurked on the floor above.
   I looked at my exposed hands. The pale white skin still had that soft golden glow which told me the magic was still working. Bringing my left hand over to my right wrist I let my index finger hang there like a blunt dagger as I tried to decide whether I should break from my camouflage and expose myself again, or if I should simply leave it be and see how far I could get with it protecting me.
   Eventually I withdrew my finger and decided that now was as good a time as any to test drive the magic and see just how long it would last for future reference.
   Glancing back at the destroyed desk briefly, I headed back into the hallway and turned left to carry on as far as it would go. My heart had returned to a more normal tempo and the thin layer of sweat on my forehead was beginning to dry as the cooler air of the hallway brushed against me.
   I took a moment to regain my thoughts and remind myself of the reason why I had come to the asylum in the first place. As an image of Lisa’s beautiful, smiling face passed through my mind I took a deep breath and started walking.

There was four more offices on the ground floor. Each one of them where in various states of decline. The same cheap desks and bookcases furnished all of them and despite my encounter with the Grimoyle I had to investigate the drawers in each one.
   Other than the scrap of neatly folded paper with the four digit sequence scrawled on it, I could find nothing else of remote importance. Near the end of the hallway was a set of doors which the signage above stated would take me into the holding dormitory.
   I hesitated for a moment, arm out stretched, palm ready to push the doors open. I glanced back up the hallway towards the main foyer. I half expected to see the raging beast from hell charging towards me, its nose finally detecting my scent. Instead I saw nothing that I hadn’t already as I entered the asylum. There was no signs of life not even of the four legged furry kind.
   I turned my attention back to the frosted glass panes which blocked any view of the room that lay beyond. Without further thought I pushed forward into the dormitory.
   In its heyday I was certain the asylum was probably an exceptional place. I knew very little about how mental institutions worked, but I assumed a holding dormitory would be where the new arrivals were stored until a doctor could properly assess their various mental conditions.
   The dorm was easily the size of a football pitch. Six barred windows on either side of the room allowed light to flood in, which strangely enough, made it seem even creepier than if I had been visiting in the dark.
   Rows of cots with little bedside cabinets where neatly laid out before me. Some of the cots had been knocked over or pushed askew which broke their neat formation. All the sheets and blankets had long since been removed. Probably pillaged by the many homeless folk who had saw the building as a possible home for a few nights?
   As I looked around though I saw no signs that anyone, not even the junkies, had attempted to bunk down even for a night. In a strange way I thought it was sad that the city had this huge building at its disposal and choose to let it go to ruin when there was so many homeless in the city that could do with a roof over their heads.
   It’s all politics. I thought as I took in the room. I noticed down near the far left corner there was a nurses station and next to that was another set of doors which could only lead upwards. Even from this distance I could see papers, probably preliminary patient reports, spread across the nurses’ desk. Behind that was a cupboard with a sink and couple of medicine cabinets which I was certain would be void of their contents by now.
   Double checking that the magic was still working and my skin was still glowing, I decided to head towards the nurses’ station. I must have been a few yards away from the metal framed desk when the clash of metal hitting the floor came from behind me.
   Jumping, I quickly turned in the direction of the noise, certain the Grimoyle was still on the prowl for me. The winged demon was nowhere to be seen, but I noticed one of the beds had been deliberately pushed on to its side.
   Trying to contain my ever changing heart rate, I focused back on the desk and took another step towards it. I could clearly see the neatly typed writing on one of the sheets of paper when another loud bang came from behind. This time it sounded like something being thrown against the wall.
   Sure enough when I spun around I could see one of the bed side cabinets leaning crookedly against the far wall where it had landed. Now I was starting to get worried.
   Those cabinets where made from solid wood and had to weigh at least forty pounds. Even a bodybuilder would have to make a considerable effort to pick one up and throw it across the room. Before I had left my apartment I felt certain I was being watched. Followed even.
   This was the proof I had been waiting for. My body tingled with fear and anticipation. Was it simply trying to scare me off, or was it trying to make me aware of its presence?  
   I glanced between the magical symbols on my wrists and the nurses’ station trying to decide which was the better option. There was no certainty that the spook following me would show its self even if I removed the magic spell hiding me from Satan’s demons.
   I decided to carry on to the extra few yards to the nurses’ station. As I went I listened for any more noises sounding out behind me, but it seemed my spooky stalker had decided to keep a low profile once again.
   The papers on the nurses’ desk appeared to be exactly what I had originally thought. Patient reports. There was at least four of them sprawled across the blood smeared wood. Smears which looked like someone sitting at the desk had been head smashed into the table and then dragged away from it by very powerful hands.
   I ignored the blood and studied the names on top of the papers. Three of them where male and one female. There was no recognition as I studied them, no fleeting memory of ever being near these people. Nothing.
   ‘Your boss will be very upset with you.’ The voice that came from behind me was soft and calm.
   Jumping, I sent the papers flying to the floor as I turned to face my stalker. He was at least two feet taller than. His skin fresh and unsullied. Crystal clear blue eyes stared down at me under a mop of short blonde hair.
   ‘How can you see me?’ I asked without really understanding why.
   The man that stood before me wore ornate golden armour that seemed to be impossibly bright and a heavy looking sword which hung proudly in a golden scabbard. It was his wings that caught my attention though. They flapped lazily behind him as he spoke and had quite a mesmerizing effect on me.
   ‘Your magic is only good for demons. Check out the wings. I am not a demon.’ He said proudly. ‘Oh, and by the way, the name is Gabriel.’
   It took a few seconds for my shattered brain to put together the pieces of the moment. Here I was invisible to demons but perfectly visible to a man, who according to his cocky attitude, was an angel.
   ‘He’s only my boss for the time being.’ I said, feeling a little pissed at being under Satan’s thumb.
   Gabriel crossed his arms over the impressive gold breast plate and his smile broadened. I’m glad someone was getting a kick out of my misery because I sure as hell wasn’t.
  ‘You mean from here to eternity?’ His smile continued to grow and I could tell he was just goading me now.
   ‘Why are you here, Gabriel. Isn’t there some sort of rule that states you can’t be seen hanging around with the dark lords’ right hand man?’
   I watched his wings rise and fall as he breathed. The smile waned a little but there was a glint in his eyes that told me he wasn’t following me just for the sparkling conversation.
   ‘No there is no such rule. I just thought I would check in on you.’ He spoke as if he had been following me for quite some time.

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