The Deal: Sinners Heart Part 2

Friday, 15 January 2016

Yeah, it’s warmer than hell. I thought to myself as I offered my open hand with the two chains for him to inspect.
   ‘The one on the right is what you’re looking for.’ I said, noting that both chains looked pretty much identical except the one I told him to take was slightly thicker.
   I watched as he snatched the chain from my open palm and stuffed it into the pocket of the rather dazzling white suit he was wearing.
   ‘Great stuff. The sinners’ heart will sit nicely in a case next to my throne.’ He said, still smiling, and I tried to hide my surprise that he didn’t even take a moment to inspect the chain he had just taken from me. ‘I find it rather annoying when Humans try to take what doesn’t belong to them.’
   I looked down at the dead con man known as Slick and shrugged my shoulders.
   ‘Well, I’m pretty sure he has a nice spot in your kingdom now.’ I said, tossing the remaining gold chain on to the dead man’s body.
   ‘Oh I have a very special place just for those who try to steal from me Samuel. I can assure you he will never rest for eternity.’
   ‘I’ll take your word for it.’ I said, wishing he would just go away and leave me alone.
   ‘I’m growing concerned about you. I feel like there is a distance between us. Like maybe you’ll try to find a way to get out of our agreement.’
   I could hear the pleasure in his voice as he spoke. He knew in a way just reminding me of the deal we made was a form of torture.
   ‘We’re both sticking to our end of the deal so there is nothing to be concerned about.’ I said, trying to find a way to avoid further the conversation, but it seemed he was in a chatty mood.
   ‘Come come Samuel, at least try and put a bit of energy into your work. You looked like you thoroughly enjoyed hacking that man to death. In-fact it’s the first time I’ve seen you that happy since the day you met your wife Lisa.’
   I closed my eyes and tried my best to contain the rage that began to well up inside me. I already knew he was going to bring her up in the conversation but I also he was doing it to get a reaction out of me.
   ‘Well, you’ve put her in a place where she is at least safe from torture. That’s good enough for me.’ I knew fine well that she may be safe from the Grimoyle’s but she was not safe from the torture of her own mind, thanks to Pertilius.
   ‘Oh Please Samuel. We both know that’s not good enough for you. We both know you want her to be released into Heaven.’ There was a gleeful tone to his voice that I absolutely despised.
   ‘Well we also know that you will never let that happen, so what’s the point of talking about it.’ I snapped, trying my best to keep my temper under control.
   ‘Oh at last, a little passion. That’s what I was looking for.’ He fell silent for a moment before saying: ‘I tell you what. I have some business that I really need to take care of. I’m going to need your help in a few days’ time. If you perform well enough we’ll talk about setting you’re wife free.’
   I spun round to face him, all my focus had been on the dead man on the floor and how the police would describe his murder.
   ‘Is this some kind of a trick or just more mental torture for me?’ I asked, this time my anger was gone and I could start to feel a fleeting sensation of hope.
   ‘No tricks or funny business. But if I do agree to let her go Samuel, it will you mean you remain my servant for the rest of eternity. So have a long hard think about that before you say anything more. I’ll be in touch.’
   And with those words he was gone. A cloud of black smoke drifting upwards in the spot where he had been standing only seconds ago.
   With my mind reeling from what he had just said, I decided I needed to get out into the open and as far away from the abattoir as possible.

The small apartment I rented was ten blocks away from where I had committed my latest crime, and although I was tempted to hail a cab, I decided that a walk would probably do me some good.
   The streets where empty apart from the occasional car shuttling by, and I felt pretty certain there was nothing that could threaten my early hours stroll through one of the toughest cities in the world.
   My thoughts began to come back together again as I continued walking. Satan, unexpectedly, had a change of heart about Lisa. He was now willing to let her go, and only after a few weeks of my servitude.
   That struck me as very odd for the lord of all things hellish. He hadn’t budged an inch during the initial deal making process and yet now he was willing to re-negotiate.
   One thing I was certain of was that it was bad news for me. Whatever he had planned next was most likely going to involve something he did not expect me to come back from and hence he was simply trying to pacify me until that time came.
   I realized, as I strolled by a rundown apartment block, that I was still clutching the gold chain with the small heart pendant. I had been certain that it was in-fact the real artefact Satan was after, yet he had made no attempt to even look at the chain he snatched from my hand.
   Did he simply know it was the right one and had no reason to double check, or did he simply not give a shit? If the latter was the case, then there was definitely something much bigger on the horizon and that made me feel very uneasy.
   After about half an hour of walking, I rounded the corner of a bodega which had been closed for the night, its graffiti covered steel shutters protecting the valuable stock inside.
   When I looked up I noticed I was approaching a small, but old building with a children’s playground laid out before its front doors. As I got closer I saw that the placard screwed to the pillar of its gates stated it was St Helen’s Elementary School and Kindergarten.
   I stood at the opening of the derelict building, my heart beginning to beat faster, as I soaked it in. The playground equipment had long been looted for its scrap value. Its windows were smashed and only partially boarded over.
   Vandals had left their mark by spray painting just about every wall they had come across and I noticed that the front doors to the building had long been kicked in and there had been no attempt to reseal it after the fact.
   My legs decided to carry me towards the main entrance, not entirely against my will, but my racing heart warned me that something was very wrong with being near this place.
   You shouldn’t be here Sammy boy. Warned the voice in my head as I approached the small set of steps just before the entrance.
   I stood there for a few seconds staring into the darkness of the building. I could feel my skin erupt in gooseflesh and suddenly I wanted to about turn and head back to the street. My body on the other hand had different ideas.
   This is where Lisa worked Sam. Do you really want to be here?
   The voice in my head had a habit of raising some pretty good questions.
   Wasn’t this what I wanted? When Pertilius had mentioned thename of the school I knew instantly it had been the place where Lisa had once been a teacher. I wanted to know about her life before she had met me. I needed to know what the hell she did that was bad she ended up in purgatory for it.
   Despite my inner turmoil I had continued to move forward without realising it and once I snapped back to reality, or what I called reality, I found myself standing in the darkened hallway which branched off on either side. The hallway on the left would lead to the elementary classrooms while the one on the right I was certain would take me towards the kindergarten.
   Tables, chairs and sheets of paper littered the hallways as well as the occasional jacket which had been left behind by their owners. Despite how foreboding the building looked on the outside and how vandalized it was inside, I couldn’t detect a reason to feel the kind of fear I had done outside in the playground.
   Fortunately, just like the abattoir, the roof of the building had been slowly disintegrating over the years and rays of pale moonlight flooded inside to light my way, as I continued towards the smaller rooms which were used for the kindergartners
   There was six rooms in total and the first five that I came to had no doors blocking their entrance so I peeked inside, not exactly sure what I should expect to see. I actually felt a little let down when the rooms appeared to be barren of anything. Most of the furniture that was worth using had long since vanished and the rest dragged out into the hallways of the school.
   A few items of clothing had been left behind and I noted in the far corner of room four there was an old matters with a dirty sheet crumpled on top. I assumed it would make a natural shelter for any homeless soul in the area so again there was no red flags there.
   As I moved to room six, the only one with a door, I tried peering through the small glass window, but the room seemed to be in total darkness. I could feel my brow furrow as I tried the handle and found that the door was locked, not jammed shut, but actually locked with a key.
   I glanced up the hallway and into the the darkness of the other side of the building. I could see and hear no one else and it certainly didn’t look like anyone had stayed behind to keep maintaining it. So why, was the only room in the kindergarten with a door, still locked at all?
   Now my curiosity was really getting the better of me and after a moment’s thought I decided that I needed to know what was in that class room. It was possible they used the room as storage before closing the building and all I was going to find was stacks of tiny chairs and tables.
   Then again there could be something else much more valuable in there, valuable to me at least.
   I raised my leg and lashed out at the door. The air with filled with a loud crack as the hinges gave way and the door fell backwards into the room.
   As I stepped into the doorway I could feel the gooseflesh return with a vengeance and cover me from head to toe. I could even feel my balls shrivel up a little as I looked into the room. The window on the door had actually been covered with a black paint. The class room its self was actually brightly lit by the overhead fluorescents.
   Soft toys of all sizes and descriptions lay scattered around the floor as if they had been dropped in mid-play. To my left was the teachers old pine desk complete with a tub full of pencils a photo frame and a few sheets of blank paper ready to be scribbled on. A chair had been pushed into the opening under the desk and the whole room had a warmth about it that made me feel like it was still very much in use.
   The photo-frame was the main item that caught my interest and would surely tell me who the teacher of the time was. However as I moved to take a closer look at it, I began to notice little details I hadn’t spotted on my initial glance round the room.
   The soft toys where matted with blood and on the floor near the toys I could make out the silhouettes of where a body had once been. A child’s body. I could feel my terror rise as I noted that there was at least six such silhouettes that I could easily pick out.


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