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post #6 of (permalink) Old 09-10-12, 10:45 PM
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Default Only The Guilty Should Suffer!

Only The Guilty Should Suffer!

What could be said for my family? The fact that I never knew them? The fact that my father was never around and my mother was a whore? Maybe it was the fact that I was never around. No, my father and mother and brother were around. My mother was not a whore and my father did not forsake us; it was me, I forsook them and it was because of me that they died.

They died by the hand of the Inquisition. They died because I was the heretic, the sinner in the midst of the righteous. They died because I did wrong when I could have done right. I hate myself for that. I hate the fact that my mother wept as they butchered my brother and father, as the Inquisition sought information my family could not possibly have known. I hate myself for betraying them, for delivering them up to execution by our family ties alone.

Inquisitor Fredric Maston was a brutal man, a man devoted to the purification of the Emperor’s worlds by any means necessary. The scriptures of the Pure were constantly upon his lips and tattooed upon his flesh. His armor was inscribed with prayers and symbols of warding as was custom for the Brotherhood of the Light. For every sin there was a punishment, for every wrong perceived upon the righteous there was a brutality dealt out.

‘You have been found guilty for the aiding of a heretic!’ he proclaimed. The cuts of his blade split the skin of my mother and she screamed and begged for him to stop. ‘The suffering I place upon your flesh will purify you of your many sins. Your screams will testify of your purging.’

She died after many hours of torment, after seeing her husband and son murdered before her very eyes. The last words she spoke through a lipless mouth were these, ‘We are innocent.’ The Inquisitor’s last words to her were, ‘Innocence means nothing.’

I wept as the blood dripped upon my head as it seeped through the floorboards. My family would not have divulged my place of hiding even if they had known where I was. The fact of their innocence meant nothing to the Inquisition. The very fact that I was alive was testament enough of their guilt.

Six years have come and gone since the last time I had been home. I was now a very different man, very different from the child I had once been. When I was a child I spoke and acted as a child should. The sins of my past had long been a plague to me, a stain upon my soul. I remembered the crime that had branded me a heretic, the theft of an amulet from the local jeweler. I had been eleven years old at the time, a little boy who should have known better then to steal from anyone.

It was not a crime worthy of anyone’s death; not a crime worthy of anything more than a fine, but the smallest infraction was a sign of guilt and theft was not tolerated by the Inquisition. Now I am seventeen and have lived a lived of violence. I had been taken in by the Brotherhood of the Vengeful, a local cult that wielded enough force to give even the Inquisition pause from their normal brutal ways of enforcing the law.

‘What is your name, boy?’ the man had asked. ‘Sven, sir.’ I had replied. The scar upon his face was terrible, the result of a fire long since extinguished. His cold black eyes regarded me for a long time before he slapped my face and knocked me to the floor. I cried out and when I did, he slapped me again and punched me in the gut. ‘I will teach you how to take pain and how to give it, boy. You will learn to be more than you have ever known. The Brotherhood will be your family now. We will be your brothers and sisters and I will be the father the Inquisition has taken from you.’

I grew up hard and became cold and soulless, and deep inside I knew there was a purpose for the pain. There was a reason I was still alive.

Inquisitor Fredric Maston walked through the alley with a confidence that had been born of pride and fanaticism. With him were seven men, all his arms of purification upon the sinners who dared cross his path. I watched them as they cleared the alley and crossed the street. The reason they were here was because of the contact I had made earlier in the day. ‘There are heretics in the Stalwart district. I have seen them butcher a man and praying to the lords of Chaos.’ That had got his attention.

As they entered the boarded up abandoned building I knew I had them. I knew where they would go and I knew what lay in store for them. I smiled, but it was not from joy but from the understanding that vengeance would be meted out. The Inquisitor would pay for the death of my family. He would know that killing the innocent to reach the guilty was a sin unworthy of the Emperor or the true followers of righteousness.

The initial blast dropped the floor out from under two of the vanguard of the Inquisitor. They died instantly when they fell upon the spiked bed on the floor below. The second blast dropped the slabs of plas-create above upon three more of them, flattening them like cakes crushing their bones and popping their bodies like air-filled bags spilling blood across the floor and up the walls with the weight of rubble.

The air was filled with dust and smoke and the screams of one of the last two remaining soldiers who had accompanied the Inquisitor. His leg had been smashed flat by a section of the ceiling. The Inquisitor and the last of his retinue knew they were trapped. He cursed and proclaimed the scriptures of hate he had tattooed upon his flesh. When he saw me and my brothers stepping over the rubble he pulled his plasma pistol and fired. The shot immolated the person beside me.

I fired my shotgun as did my brothers and killed the last of the Inquisitor’s men and injured the Inquisitor himself. He tried to curse us but I broke his jaw with the butt of my shotgun. ‘You killed my family. You are guilty.’ When I close my eyes I can still hear his screams.

1,099 words, not including title.

A good reputation take a long time to build, but only a moment to destroy. Wow, that's deep! Check out the H.O.E.S. short story competition.
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