The Orphans of Cerberus

BY : Fetherhd
Category: Final Fantasy VII > General
Dragon prints: 1741
Disclaimer: Square Enix holds all rights the the FFVII world and its characters. This is a not for profit fanfiction

The Orphans Of Cerberus chapter 32

"Move yer asses people!"
A hard fist flashed out driving one ragged grunt into the dirt. The scientist didn't even glance down as he stepped over the twitching form. The usual result of one of his Mako enhanced blows landing was one less specimen in the labs. It was no great loss. Their continuing Hellhound drops in Midgar were the perfect distractions. Along with keeping Shinra (and Valentine) stretched thin and hopping, it allowed their raids on the smaller outlying towns to go almost unnoticed and these brought in a steady supply of lab fodder. The victims that were…hehehe…LUCKY enough to not get turned into changelings immediately, became very willing slaves. The scientist usually picked the strongest prisoners, the ones most likely to cause trouble and publicly broke them. Then, all it took was letting the new arrivals watch Titan have his way with the wrecks that actually survived the man's brutality. (The great male could care less if his sexual rewards were male or female, he used both with equal enthusiasm!) After the rest witnessed the resulting transformations, Duprey had NO problem getting complete obedience.
Although…. when it came time to load the hard to control, very dangerous Hellhounds there was a distinct lack of enthusiasm from his free work force. The plan was to drop the pack of infectious monsters into Neibelhiem in order to draw Valentine and the Turks out of the mansion leaving it open to a raid. Angelique was already in route to rendezvous there. The Head of Research would cause no alarm with her arrival…she was expected. Her visit was intended to facilitate getting them in.
A quick glance at the darkening sky with it's lowering clouds had Bernard swearing. They had a very narrow window in the weather for this operation. Angelique had planned it so that the developing blizzard would work in their favor. Neibelhiem’s ferocious winter winds and mountain snow would keep any aerial search parties grounded. Ground forces would fare no better, these mountains had their killer reputation for a reason!
Duprey did NOT want to get caught in the sky when the full force of this storm closed in! He turned to the massive bulk of his Second,
"Titan…get them moving!"
The great beast did not hesitate. He stalked forward, awesome wedge shaped head held low, mighty jaws gaped in a savage grin. The beast was followed closely by his subordinate brother, the always silent Shadow. The man watched in satisfaction as frightened faces glanced the dark pairs way and the pace of the loading reached a frantic level.
Ice padded quietly towards the kitchen, grumbling to herself about the stairs. She loved her room, BUT as her pregnancy progressed, getting to and from it was becoming more and more difficult. The Were understood now why Vixen had ALWAYS conceived while in her beast form. Its’ long waist and deep ribcage was much better adapted for carrying multiple kits. Not to mention that balancing her expanding girth on just two legs was becoming more and more difficult! Ice stopped for a moment and leaned against the wall to take a breather. Being out of breath was a new experience for her and she did NOT like the feeling. Her kits protested it also… squirming around, kicking, fighting for position in the cramped space. Thank the GODS that Troop pregnancies only lasted five months. The female had been absurdly grateful that she WASN'T human when Marion had offhandedly mentioned that their gestation was a whole nine months. She only had one more month to deal with the discomfort. Of course human females usually only had one kit to deal with, not a litter of four!
The Were's lovely features pulled down into a panting scowl. This was ridiculous! She had just gotten herself settled comfortably upstairs to rest a little before the Head of Research got here, when her peace had been interrupted by an evil and insidious thought.
There was ice cream with her name on it down in the kitchen!
No really…it literally had HER name written on it. Chaos had put it on there after the last gallon he had made a late night, gotta craving, MUST have it, ice cream flight to get, had mysteriously vanished. This way, the demon said as he casually printed ICE in big letters, there could be NO excuse of "I didn't know it was for Ice" when he caught SOMEONE other than her (won't name names, but HE had red hair) scarfing it down fast enough to get brain freeze. Said redhead had definitely paled a little at the darkly evil glare that pinned him where he sat working out a plan to get the ice cream and blame Rude for it. Ice had added a wicked, fang showing smile to her glare…just for good measure.
Vincent stifled a soft hiss as he carefully settled his aching body on the couch in the great room. The simple act of resting his weight against the cushions aggravated wounds received on his last extermination mission. Chaos had recommended, and he had grudgingly allowed, Marian to cleanse and stitch the more serious of his wounds after the latest incident. Even with the aid of a low level CURE, there was only so much the demon Lord could do with the Were inflicted bites. The gunman's lithe frame was becoming a map work of new injuries overlaid on the slowly healing old.
What appeared to be an endless supply of Changelings continued to crop up seemingly from nowhere, at a regular and alarming rate. Valentine was getting less and less time to recuperate between outbreaks and the gunman's enhanced body was beginning to have trouble dealing with the constant drain of healing damage caused by teeth coated in virus infected saliva. And he wasn't the only one feeling the strain. Crimson eyes narrowed a little as Whisper limped into the room, followed closely by Reno. The White had become the ex-Turk's partner of choice when dealing with the infectious Hellhounds. The young male was an excellent close quarters fighter, and he had no reason to fear the nasty mutating virus. BUT… he was young and inexperienced, this led to occasional mistakes. The last one of these had ended with Vincent buried under a pile of snapping, clawing, living death. Whisper had recovered well and waded in to pull his partner out but in doing so, had received wounds that had been life threatening even for his iron constitution.
Vincent's elegant brows twitched down into a slight frown. Head of Research visiting be damned…The young male was SUPPOSED to be in bed…. resting.
Chaos HMPHED softly.
"Chaos…don't even go there!"
Vincent sighed and sank further down into the cushions if summoned by the demon... Yuffie appeared in the doorway. The young ninja had been polite but oddly…aloof… since the day Shinra had come to visit. Valentine had not yet screwed up his courage enough to sit down and talk to the Princess about his unthinking comments that day on the airship. Rather… the man had pretty much convinced himself that he should not breach the widening gap in their relationship. It would be better for Yuffie if she set her sights on a man with less…shall we say…baggage. The increasing frequency of attacks served as an excellent subconscious excuse to keep their contact to a bare minimum.
Still, Vincent could not hide the twinge of pain that flashed through his breast from his dominant demon, as the young woman's honey tinted gaze settled on him for a moment, then she casually nodded a greeting and turned her attention elsewhere. Such was the gunslinger's internal distress that the man did not notice that Yuffie's usually bright eyes were dark and flat. Chaos noticed though…and at that moment the Dark One wished there was a way he could manifest separately from his HOST, so he could grab the immortal fool and shake the living SHIT out of him!
Rude hesitated as he followed Marion into the great room. He had known that Reno would come down for this little "introduction". The Second in command had already met Dr. Angelique Destinie and had secretly confided to his partner that something about the seemingly sweet elderly woman made his skin crawl. The Turk was slouched comfortably in one of the high backed chairs by the fireplace.
Whisper, on the other hand, was SUPPOSED to be in bed. Ruby eyes glinted his superior's way and the Albino's ears flattened a little as he received stern looks from both Rude AND the shadow cloaked in crimson (Vincent steadfastly maintained that he had EARNED the right to be unfashionable if he wanted to!) that was currently residing on the couch. The young male planted his rump on top of Reno's feet, and folded his own long toes one over the other. The Turk's pale fingers twined into the creamy mane as Whisper's strong tail coiled around one of the man's blue clad legs. Insolent, almost blue eyes steadily met the flash of the dark man's shades. Rude lifted one shoulder in a shrug and took up a place opposite the pair by the fire. Reno's cool, pale gaze turned to appraise Valentine, and one fiery brow arched up. Vincent, who was looking tired and drawn, was the first to glance away, one corner of his mouth quirking up in defeat. After all… HE was also supposed to be in his room… resting.
It seemed that everyone in the house was gathering in anticipation of meeting the coming guest. Rude's hidden gaze swept the rest of the room. They noted Yuffie curled up in one of the easy chairs. The only one missing was Ice…and the pregnant female would probably put off taking the long trip down the stairs from her room until the very last minute.
Abraham came in with a large armful of wood…the Valet had been hustling, getting fuel for the fire stockpiled just in case they lost power during the bad weather that was closing in. Anyone who had lived in these mountains for long knew to be prepared! The man servant stacked his arm load, looked around and went over to the side bar to stand quietly in case he was needed to make a nightcap. The Turk could not BELIEVE that the elderly man had been outside without a coat! Of course… Neibelhiem was known to breed them tough. Full lips parted a little, as Rude actually thought about getting that drink. Then Vincent jerked straight up with a muffled groan. Rude couldn't help but wince as the man dug his buzzing cell phone out from under his cloak. The narrowing of crimson eyes, and tightening of pale lips told the assassin that this was not the Head of Research announcing her arrival. Reno also caught the subtle nuances of the gunman's expression.
"SHIT…YO…that had better not be another outbreak in Midgar!"
The redhead knew, as did everyone else in the room, that in very little time, the oncoming storm would prevent ALL travel to and from Neibelhiem.
Valentine shook his head as he closed his phone. His ruby gaze lingered on Whisper for a second, taken in the male's still rough physical condition then he turned to Rude. Crimson shifted to gold as the ex-Turk answered the unspoken question.
"Not Midgar….Neibelhiem! Rude you need to be wearing something warm enough to fly in."
The man snatched his shades off of his face…oh no… this WASN'T going where he thought it was.
"Um…the copter is heated?"
Red and black mist swirled around Vincent's still figure and the voice that answered was an eerie blend of the man and Chaos.
"It will be faster if we fly as the crow flies….namely using our own wings."
The shades slid back on.
"Why was I afraid you were going to say that!"
Abraham appeared at the big man's side, a thick coat in hand. It might have been Rude's imagination but the Valet seemed to give his shoulder a little compassionate squeeze as he helped the Turk dress for the high altitude cold.
Reno sat straight up pure envy chasing the concern from his face.
"YO….what about me?"
Rude gave the redhead a tight smile…flying with Chaos HAD to be numero uno when it came to Reno's wet dreams. The demon pinned the other Turk with his molten gaze and the wicked smile that parted the dark lips made it very clear that the demon KNEW.
The demon directed a hard look upwards towards Ice's room, then let his worried gaze linger on the seated pair.
Reno followed the pair out of the door and watched as the Demon positioned his partner in front of him, powerful grey arms locking around the big man's thick chest. Huge bloodied wings snapped open and the powerful being crouched slightly drawing the man so tightly against him that Rude could feel the slow rumbling beat of the dark Lord's heart. The assassin's own heart flew up into his throat as wing leather boomed and his softly murmured…ah shit… ah shit… ah shit…was lost in the thunder of that first all important down stroke. Chaos did not falter as he launched them skyward, his thundering wings driving them up into the underbelly of the gathering storm.
Reno studied the swirling clouds for a moment, the pilot in him automatically calculating how long it would be before flight became impossible. The Turk assumed that Dr. Destinie must be planning on weathering out the storm at the mansion or in town. Hopefully… Vincent and Rude would get this outbreak under control quickly. The wind was already gusting and very soon it would be unsafe to fly, even if you DID have your own wings!
Pale eyes followed a fat snowflake as it danced on the wind and then tracked across the lawn, narrowing to peer into the shadows gathering under the eaves of the forest. Long fingered hands flowed through an automatic check on the battle readiness of the various weapons hidden on the redhead's lean body. Chaos had only echoed the Turk's own assessment of the situation. Something about this smelled foul. It would not be the first time company enemies had tried to set Shinra back by kidnapping or killing a top scientist. A quick glance at the dark skies and Reno stepped back and closed the door. When Angelique arrived he would insist that she stay at the mansion. With Abraham, (yeah…the assassin's well honed instincts told him that the old man could hold his own in a fight) Whisper, and himself as bodyguards, the elderly woman would be safe.
Whisper had stayed seated with his back against Reno's chair while the Turk had seen his partner and Chaos off. The white's ruby eyes were half glazed as he soaked up the heat from the fire. Reno knew just how sore his lover was, and could not blame the Were for not wanting to get up if he did not have to. Rather than have the healing male move out of the way, the man made use of his longer than average legs and stepped over the flame heated, somnolent puddle of Were, to settle back into his seat.
The warmth from the fireplace and from the hot body pressed against his legs soon had the Turk half drowsing. Vigilance was the Turk way of life though and the man remained aware of things going on in the room….Abraham left and then returned with a tray of snacks.(Elizabeth had headed home before the storm hit.) There was a soft murmur of conversation between Marion and Yuffie and a slight movement in the hallway turned out to be Ice joining them, bearing a full bowl of ice cream. Red brows arched sleepily as the female's silvery gaze rested on him for a moment. Her silken lips lifted in a slight warning snarl and the ice cream was cradled possessively against the curve of the Were's growing belly. Ice slunk to a chair as far from him as possible as the man slowly licked his lips with a pink tongue. Teasing the pregnant female had turned out to be more fun then the redhead could have possibly imagined…although…Whisper watched him as if he was crazy. The Albino KNEW you did NOT purposely poke a sleeping dragon with a sharp stick…and that is pretty much what Reno was doing!
The thumping of a copter's rotors roused the Turk, and he straightened a little. The howl of the machine's engines deepened as it landed. It was about time. Then the man's head cocked and a frown furrowed a line in his forehead. Something was off. Reno had a keen ear when it came to the flying machines and he distinctly heard TWO machines, not the single one they were expecting. Blinking to clear the blur of sleepiness out of his vision, Reno surged up as Abraham's hand closed over the door handle.
The Turk's, "YO….don't open….!" was drowned out by the deafening crash of the door flying open, propelled by a powerful outside kick.
Rude's grip convulsively tightened on the powerful arms locked around his chest as Chaos hit an air pocket and abruptly lost altitude. The big man had never had a problem with airsickness. But, as they dropped, he was pretty sure his stomach had been left behind somewhere up above them. There was a soft rumbling grunt from his living "aircraft" and the man marveled at the feel of mighty muscles rolling against his back as the demon side slipped to gain some speed, stretched those fragile seeming wings wide and brought their descent back under control. A couple of hard strokes and the pair was rising again in the turbulent air.
The Turk had witnessed Chaos flying many times, and it had always seemed a graceful, flowing dance with the wind. He was fast learning that this had been pure illusion! The demon was constantly adjusting as the wind currents and air pockets tried to toss them around. It was very evident that flying was hard work. The demon's face was very close to Rude's neck. The sound of his deep, long, breaths, (oddly, timed between wing beats) as Chaos worked to keep them aloft was loud in the man's ear. Between the hot breath ghosting across the back of his neck and the tremendous heat that the dark one generated as he flew, Rude found that he was surprisingly warm. Everywhere that was, except his face. That was rapidly being coated with melting snow that almost instantly turned to ice in the freezing wind of their passage.
As he ducked his head to protect himself, the image passed through his mind of Reno's copter being sprayed down with a deicer before a winter flight. Hum….wonder how the demon dealt with ice build up on the leading edge of those driving wings? A very unmanly squeak forced its’ way passed the Turk's tight lips as without warning, Chaos rolled. While they were upside down and dropping, the demon gave his whole body an odd… wave-like… shake. Another stomach twisting spin and they were upright again. Now Rude was known to be a quiet…yes…even taciturn individual but THIS was just too much!
"Holy FUCKING Gia….son of a bitch! MAN…give a soul a warning before you do shit like that!"
The wind snatched the very words from between his lips before he could spit them out but the vibration of the demon's deep chuckle made it clear he had been heard.
Going back to his quiet ways…more to preserve his dignity then anything else, Rude softly muttered.
"Valentine was sooo right!"
"You ARE an asshole!"
Rude stepped down hard on the sudden and urgent desire to squirm.
Yuffie watched silently from her window seat as Chaos launched himself into the darkening sky. The young woman tightened the walls around her heart as Rude and the demon disappeared into the swirling snow. She refused to allow herself to worry about Vincent. The ninja had kept her distance but was VERY aware of the gunman's deteriorating physical condition. She had casually worked the information out of Marion when Valentine had made an unprecedented trip down to the labs AFTER his last mission. The young woman had known the demon ridden man was not there JUST to visit the recuperating Albino when her enhanced sense of smell had caught the very distinct aroma of fresh blood as he passed her in the hallway. The Doc made it clear with just a minimal amount of prying from the ninja that she was concerned about more than the gunman's physical condition. The petite Vet had worried the hell out of Yuffie when she almost too casually asked if the gunslinger had ever been suicidal.
Vincent may have been under the impression that Yuffie had only given him a passing glance and nod, but the man had a tendency, as did others, to forget that the Princess of Wutai was a highly trained ninja. In that one quick seemingly casual look…the shin obi had noted the shadows under that porcelain skin and the fine lines of weariness and pain that showed around crimson eyes and tight, pale lips. Yuffie had cringed when the ex-Turk's damned phone had buzzed. Vincent did not notice as the girl bit her lips and blinked back tears when his hard gaze had not even considered her as a battle partner. There had been a time in the not so distance past that the ex-Turk would not have hesitated to include her in his choice of partners. After all…she was also immune to the Changelings infectious bite. (AND a hell of a lot lighter than Rude for Chaos to carry!) It was just another symptom of the man not wanting to have anything to do with her.
Yuffie was glad for Marion's company as it served to distract her from her worried thoughts. When Ice joined them…bringing her ice cream, the conversation soon deteriorated into giggles punctuated by dirty looks sent Reno's way. Yuffie registered the sound of the second helicopter but did not put two and two together until Reno surged up out of his chair. All three females froze as the door was kicked open. Its’ solid weight caught Abraham and slammed him with bone cracking force against the wall.
The ninja was up and moving as a large man flowed into the room. This isn't what had caused the outburst though. A huge black mass separated itself from the shadows of storm and night. Ivory flashed in the firelight as the monstrous Titan entered, mouth gaped in a threat display. He was followed by a brother who was just as black but some what smaller. Amazingly, Abraham managed to lever himself off of the floor only to have a fluff of white sprout over his heart with a soft phftt. Narrowed, glazing eyes gleamed a molten silver and the man's lips pulled back in a savage snarl. There was a sharp curse and a second… phftt… as another blossom of white grew out of the advancing man's neck. The Valet staggered and dropped, as if boneless, to the floor. While all attention in the room had been riveted on the advancing beasts, the elderly woman bringing up the rear had brought a dart gun into play.
Yuffie reversed directions, grabbed Marion and dove for the tenuous safety behind a chair as that nasty looking weapon swung towards them. The stinging bite just under her ribs told her she had not moved fast enough. The girl managed to hold onto consciousness just long enough to see Ice drop her ice cream and try to twist out of the path of a third dart. The Were's reflexes were slowed by her awkward, thickened body and the sharp needle buried itself in her thigh. The pregnant female slumped to the floor as a curtain of blackest night sucked the light out of the Yuffie's world.
Whisper had been soaking up the warmth of the fire like a heat sponge and drowsing when Reno leaped up with a shout. Ruby eyes flashed open and the white forgot about his healing injuries as adrenaline surged through him at the sight of Titan bearing down on the Turk. The male achieved a full shift to beast in mid flight as he launched himself to intercept his larger brother. A piece of the night rose up to meet him. There was a shuddering thunk as ebony and ivory slammed together, chest to chest, Shadow's larger bulk absorbing the impact with little difficulty.
Grappling with the much larger male, the albino had a moment of panic when he saw a seriously outmatched Reno get overwhelmed by the massive might of Titan. Then he remembered Abraham's words and Rude's hard lessons. Whisper's mind dove to his center and a deep calm washed though the Were…he could do this for his mate. The white braced himself and with a much practiced, twisting move, the omega male sent his larger sibling flying through the air to crash into the wall. Whisper did not hesitate, instead of following up his attack, he broke off and shot across the room, intent on reaching the human male who seemed to be the Alpha here. He made it half way there before Shadow's great weight landed on his back and sent them rolling. For a moment the pair fought as beasts, kicking, slashing and biting, entangled in a writhing, howling ball of talons, teeth, thrashing limbs, and tails. Then… Whisper managed to gain the upper hand. Powerful arms locked around Shadow's massive, wedge shaped head and twisted, the Were fully determined to break that heavy, collared neck. So intent was Whisper on finishing the kill, he did not know he was in mortal peril until a silver laced bullet punched through his back. The impact spun him, and the next four slammed into his chest and soft underbelly. As pain and shock stripped his strength away, the white staggered back, only to be caught from behind by strong black arms. Shadow gave a soft grunt as he caught his brother's weight, then snarled as the last shot went through the white and buried itself in his flank. Whisper felt a moment of confusion as his brother almost gently lowered him to the floor, then he was overwhelmed with sadness as he heard Reno's stricken scream of pain and rage. Fading crimson sought out the gold…Whisper silently prayed that he still held a small place in this, his favorite brother's heart. A soft cough to clear frothy blood from his throat, and the white pleaded with the darkness.
"Shadow…no labs, no whitecoats…do for mine what you could not do for yours….please!"
This last was hissed out as the white's breath left him.
Marion could only hold Yuffie's limp body and sob as Shadow straightened up from his brother's still form. Reno had been effectively immobilized, pinned and held by the powerful Titan. At least this was the case until the Turk saw his lover fall. His throat tearing scream was a thing born of nightmares.
"YO….Gods…NO…you fuckers…"
Eyes that had been glowing mako blue practically ignited as Reno went off like one of Rude's homemade bombs. The screaming man twisted like an eel in Titan's grip and the small ball of green that was incased in the gold of his earring flared to life. A shuddering ripple passed over the black's body and his mane ruffed out in spikes. That wicked mouth gaped in a soundless scream as the glow of a cast Cure rolled over him. As those massive arms loosened, the Turk managed to wrest himself free. A fast diving roll and Reno came up with his dropped E.M.R…it was buzzing like an angry hive as the man thrust it up into Titan's undefended belly. The great male folded up in a spasm and the assassin bore him to the ground. There was a flash of flame reflecting off of silver and the knife that the man had seemingly produced out of thin air descended in a lethal arc.
Shadow was moving even as the sound of gunfire again thundered in the room. The bullet hit high, causing that wicked silver blade to spin out of Reno's grasp. The male hit him a second later. Shadow's momentum knocked the battling redhead off of Titan and the man ended up on his bleeding back pinned by the Were's four hundred plus pounds.
Marion tried to scramble to her feet. Whisper was still breathing in soft shallow gasps and Reno was going to need some medical aid. The Vet feared that Abraham was probably dead…there was no way the man's aged body could handle two doses of a tranquilizer meant to take down an adult were.
The Doc came to a sliding stop as Dr. Angelique Destinie stepped in front of her, that wicked little dart gun never leaving the spot it was aimed at on her chest. Marion stared in shock into those smiling…oh so cold…eyes.
Shadow's head dipped as the man under him arched, kicked and cursed in his rage. Broad nostrils twitched as the beast's nose caught the scent of Whisper on the man and…in… him. Gold eyes slid sideways to the motionless, bleeding white body. So…his favorite brother had finally found a mate worth fighting for. What a shame he would also die for him. The black brother wished for a moment that HE had been given that option. Inner eyelids flicked closed at the hate and pain he saw in the mako blue glare that met his own gaze without fear and on a whim…. To HELL with his orders…Shadow decided to finish the job his brother had started. Reno screamed again as four inch fangs closed over flesh and drove through in a crushing bite. The lethal, saliva coated, ivory blades came together with a sickening SNICKT, buried to their thick base, deep in the struggling Turk's shoulder.
Shadow's oddly calm gaze never left Reno's face as he bit down twice…making damned sure to work as much of his saliva into the penetrating wounds as he could before Duprey recovered from his surprise enough to trigger the slave collar. The scientist had wanted a Turk of his very own to break. Reno was useless to him as a Hellhound…and Shadow was damned determined to hide certain… facts… that the whitecoats did NOT need to know. As the first electrical surge and wave of pain hit him, the Were allowed the man to kick free of his convulsing body. He would leave it up to the fiery redhead to decide whether he wanted to live or…die… while he was still fully human.
"Mother fucker….!"
Duprey was livid as he watched a project dear to his heart ruined before it even began. He thumbed the current on Shadow's collar to high in retaliation for the Were's willful disobedience. The damned beast had been given clear orders that, if any Turk was left behind at the mansion, he to be captured alive and UNBITTEN! The scientist would have preferred it be the big, taciturn black man. Rude had a reputation for being very strong in mind and body. BUT…. having the Second in command of the Turks strapped and screaming to his exam table would have been acceptable also. Bernard wanted nothing more than to surpass Hojo in his ability to break a person's body, mind, and spirit….he truly wanted to emulate the twisted professor by doing this with his very own Turk "specimen". Oh well…time to cut their losses and get the hell outta there. They had acquired the specimens most important to their research.
He watched with clinical detachment as the Turk managed to regain his feet. That in itself showed what a great lab rat the man would have been. Reno must be operating on sheer mako enhanced adrenaline and strength of will alone. Blood had turned the Turk's shirt almost black, as the bullet wound and the deep slashing bites in his shoulder continued to pour life bearing crimson out. Even mako had a problem dealing with that kind of blood loss AND the virus laden saliva. Reno would be dead or a hellhound in very little time and as such he was of no use to Duprey.
The assassin spun as Titan came up off of the floor and lunged at him. Again there was the gleam of silver as the man produced another knife. (Damn…where WAS he pulling all of those from?) The scientist lost his detachment as that blade slashed towards his Second's throat. Titan ducked his head and received the deep gash across his snapping, foaming muzzle. Reno gracefully shifted and the knife dropped down in a sweeping arc, aimed at the beast's vulnerable groin. Duprey did not hesitate, he fired a bullet into the injured man’s unprotected lower back. His target staggered forward, rebounded against Titan's massive chest and then dropped into an untidy bloody heap on the polished wood floor.
The scientist swept the now quiet room with a calculating gaze.
"Titan….Shadow…get Ice and the changeling."
He gave Angelique a predatory smile,
"Do you think you can handle specimen M …my dear?
Angelique just smiled and motioned the Vet towards the door.
After the thumping of the copter rotors and the howl of the machines straining engines had faded into the stormy night, silence descended inside the mansion. All that could be heard was the crackle of the dying fire, the desolate howl of the wind dancing around the eves, and the soft gurgling gasps of the injured and the dying.

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