The Tragedy of Living

Hello, welcome to this story. This isn't all mine, just so it's made clear. This is a roleplay written between myself and my boyfriend, whom I haven't really talked to in about a month. The story is unfinished. I guess you could say I'm posting this because I miss him.

Anyway, the story isn't a love story, in case that's what you're here for. It contains homosexual themes, however, and disturbing subject matter, so read on with caution. Leave a review if you feel it's worthy enough, otherwise… enjoy?

part one.

The heavy beat of Underworld's Born Slippy pounded out into the road from a house that was strangely untouched by the usual hammer of 'urban decay'. On closer inspection, none of the houses in the factory masquerading as family homes suffered a single broken window, were even -and this was especially unheard of- untouched by a tag of spray paint.

Unusual to the out-of-towner or passer-by by it's pristine condition, anyone who lived locally knew why these properties were left alone; it was the same reason that no one within earshot of the noise pollution complained to the police (who wouldn't have attended anyway).

Set flush into the face of blank grey brickwork, which stretched up over a storey before giving way to metal framed windows, was a blue painted door; behind it was a straightforward staircase, no side rooms. The staircase itself creaked like each step was the back of some Inquisition criminal, covered in thin red trying-to-be-carpet. This material carried on through into the room directly ahead, a large open plan living room/dining room/kitchenette affair hidden behind yet another plain painted door. It suddenly plunged into thick, fluffy red carpet, as if the stairs were diseased.

The living room was decked around with low slung brown leather sofas, broken up with the odd armchair and courted by a couple of mahogany coffee tables. While the wallpaper was old, blue, paisley and peeling in huge tears the furniture looked new and expensive. The people currently lounging all over said furniture weren't as such. Some of them had new and expensive suits on but their eyes were all the same; flat and stony and stoned. Cruel mouths and laughing sarcasm, hands tacky with lust and nails red and sharp as tongues. The place stank of fag smoke.

The tiny kitchen was empty and grey and dark compared to the low level lighting courtesy of the tall stand up lamps. Pizza boxes were stacked in the corner to show how the party in the flat were managing not to starve. The man of the hour, the owner of the flat, the reason why no one who wanted to keep their kneecaps tampered with any of the buildings down this particular street.

Reynold didn't have to use a tough sounding name; it had become a name that provoked fear simply because it was his. He was an intimidating looking bloke, with shoulders wider than any other part of his body and teeth with enough gold to buy a porsche. He ran a deep-seated vein of drug crime, merry-go-rounds of prostitute rings, chaotic organised crime and run-of-the-mill petty thuggery.

He'd get one of his boys to steal candy from a baby just so that he could give that baby a few more lollipops and eventually have it in his pocket. Or sell it. Anyone who was less than straight-edged and their families knew who he was and no one was stupid enough or dissatisfied enough with the status quo to challenge him.

Put together this made Reynold able to have whatever he wanted, including other people. A door that had been wallpapered into the surrounding wall suddenly opened, it's opening the only way you'd even know it was there. Even people who'd been through the door forgot where it had been once it closed. Only a hairline crack and some pulled up wallpaper gave it away if you looked closely enough, and it wasn't a massive difference compared to the rest of the wallpaper.

This door led to a second bedroom, unlike Reynold's bedroom at the top of another set of stairs; his bedroom was warm and opulent, complete with a king sized four poster bed with the occasional naked chick inside.

The hidden room behind the hidden door was cold. The sudden drop in temperature is the first thing that hit. The second wasn't the dark, as when the punters went in the single light bulb in the room was usually on, angling the place in sugarpaper black and white. It was the smell. The room smelt of damp, the wallpaper wet and peeling off the walls, black mould spotting the ceiling in the corners and condensation climbing up the window even though it was open. The windowsill was rotting and it smelt vaguely like a hamster cage next to a litter tray. It smelt of blood and sex; days and weeks and months of fucking and misery.

The only furniture was a knack-kneed dresser and a single metal framed bed. The sheets were dirty, the striped yellowed mattress showed where the covers and the undersheet had slipped off. A thin pillow, barely more than a cotton sack, lay on the floor.

As the door closed behind the man buckling his belt back up there was a glimpse of a thin, pale arm lying over the edge of the bed, the fingers curled up slightly. The line of the arm continued down the lean gleam of a thin blade of a body, just a sliver visible before the next man went in, the door closing again on hopeless black hair and fucking hungry eyes.

Reynold's favourite party favour, that grey and black boy in the middle of the bed.


He stood outside that booming, calm-blistering, untagged house. His left hand flicked ash from his dying cigarette; his right was stuffed in the pocket of his jacket. Maybe he looked obvious—he didn't care, and neither did anyone around him. The bad part about ruling with fear was that none of your kinsmen—minions, really—felt the need to help you out when it looked like someone just might have come to kill you.

And Daeved was about to do just that.

Of course it was easy to be brave about it, standing outside the lion's den without the lion yet in sight. In truth, Daeved's whole body trembled at the very idea, and he wasn't sure if he could go through with it. However, all he had to do to gather back his courage was think about his sister.

His twin sister, with cascading ash-blonde hair and luminous, laughing blue eyes, smiling up at him with glee as he twirled her around the dance floor on her, their, seventeenth birthday, the red dress she saw in the window and just had to have looking perfect on her, his birthday gift to her. The spun-glass vase of flowers for her sweet sixteen. The hopeful way she looked when he promised he would protect her after their father's sentencing, on the stone steps of the courthouse, the way she clung to him and cried into the sleeve of his shirt.

The way she looked, paling and fading away before Daeved's very eyes, wasting away like some addict, except it was nothing of her choice that had her dying in his arms. The way the bruises started not going away, the way her ribcage was becoming so defined against her chalk-pale skin.

The way she looked when she died.

It was this Daeved saw in the brief flash of pale boy before the door closed, hiding out amongst the crowds of the flat, the kitchen a moving creek of wastrels—and trying to blend in with them was harsh enough. Stink greeted Daeved's nose; he rose his pungent drink closer to his mouth to mask the smell. It had been too easy getting inside. His hair, a sort of dishwater brown usually tucked behind elflike ears that leant a weird sort of delicacy to his face, covered it instead, as if it could create a mask for Daeved to hide behind. He couldn't, but it didn't matter anyway.

A large, steroid-fueled mass walked in front of Daeved's view of the nonexistent door, forcing his attention upwards. The stench seemed to grow stronger, and Daeved's blood vessels began to transport blood a lot faster. It was Reynold, nothing else tacked on before or after. He needed no introduction. He was the introduction.

He was exactly whom Daeved had come for.

"Pretty, int' he?"

"WHAT?" Daeved couldn't hear a thing over the teeth-shaking drop-bass that excelled in coming from a soundsystem only the best laundered money could buy. Not that he was all that interested in holding a conversation at the moment; Reynold seemed to have a different idea, however, and the meaty hand, encased in bling, that engulfed Daeved's upper arm tightly was steering them both in the direction of UP and AWAY.

He was quite nearly shoved into an upstairs bedroom, the music locking itself with its own key behind the tightly shut door, muffled bass leaking through like smoke between the cracks. Daeved's entire pulmonary system was in his throat, choking him with round-sized fear. Had Reynold sussed him out already? Could he make a run for it? Probably not, he answered himself instantaneously, his voice dry and calm in his head despite the urge to shit his trousers.

"That's better. Oi, you," Reynold's voice was gruff and commanded attention. "I don't recognise you." His face was leering as he came closer, gold teeth glittering, making Daeved back up til the back of his legs hit the mattress of Reynold's oversized bed. He just caught his balance before falling onto it, wobbling slightly in place.

"I'm Annie's brother," Daeved spilled out, not knowing if the information would save or condemn him.

"Little orphan Annie, izzat so?" Reynold backed off, turning away and Daeved thought maybe the verdict would be in his favour. "Sweet little thing, that Annie." Suddenly, Reynold's hand came out of nowhere and backhanded Daeved hard across the face, sending him reeling and crashing onto the bed. Reynold was overtop him instantly.

"Little orphan Annie hasn't been round to pay me my dues in over a month," Reynold hissed hot and stinking against the side of Daeved's face, his hand gripping Daeved's shoulder hard as if he was trying to get away, which he wasn't. "Any idea why that is? And it had better be a very good idea." The shine of a switchblade hovered all too near Daeved's exposed ear, the sharp tip dancing along the skin of his neck, making it jump.

Daeved dry-swallowed. "She's dead."

Maybe the pressure on his shoulder decreased, Daeved couldn't be too certain, but it was the only reaction Reynold gave. He didn't speak for a moment, but Daeved could feel the cold from his dead gaze as it studied him, he guessed, looking for signs that he was lying. Since he wasn't, it was easy to be convincing.

"She owes me a lotta money, dead or not." Daeved grimaced, already knowing just where this was all headed.

"That's why I'm here, Reynold."

The back of a hand ran down the side of Daeved's face, and he had to swallow back the bile in his throat. "I saw you eyeing my boy. You're pretty, too, not as pretty as him but pretty enough. What's yer name?"

It took three tries, but his name the man could have. "Daeved."

"Well, Daeved, you came here seeking me out, knowing your sister had a debt to me. Ungrateful little whore was my best girl, but she kept skimming from her customers, getting paid more than the asking price just cause she was so cute and good at her work, too." Rage seethed inside Daeved at Reynold's callous words. "Now, I know you came here knowing all that." Daeved's slight nod was answer enough. "So how do you plan to replay me?"

The tongue that edged along the shell of Daeved's ear made him shudder in revulsion, but he was cognizant enough to thrust himself up against Reynold's waiting pelvis. He could do this, he could. All he had to do was think about Annie…

-

Hours later and Daeved woke. He was cold, but that was no surprise considering he was stark naked and on the floor. Everything ached, and when he moved his legs he could feel the pull of dried blood and other things between his thighs, kickstarting his memory. They'd used them, all of them. Nearly everyone at the party'd had a go, not just Reynold. After he'd finished with Daeved he called them all up to play with the new boy. 'Daeved,' he'd said, 'let's see if you can give my boy a run for his money.' Daeved remembered somewhat hazily, halfway through, Reynold had declared he didn't. Still, he was used and manipulated. He'd drunk gallons of cum. His wrists and ankles were raw from being bound; not because Reynold was afraid of him getting away but because it was a favourite game of his. Bind the weak boy, fuck him senseless, come on his face and watch as he can't do anything to stop it at all. Watch the hope for mercy die in his eyes as his mouth and his ass get used and abused over and over. Laugh when it does.

Daeved had no doubt he'd done the same to Annie. Perhaps it was how he tried out all his whores. Just before he'd passed out, Reynold grabbed him by his long, cinnamon hair and grinned right in his face. "A few more nights like this, and I'll consider all debts paid in full, lad." And then, nothing. Til now.

What woke Daeved wasn't the loud buzzsaw snoring of Reynold passed out on the bed above him (somehow he'd ended up under the bed, unsure how or why but uncaring either way). It was the rat that scurried over his foot and now sat crouched next to Daeved's head, sniffing at him as if wondering if he'd died and become food yet. Daeved shifted again and scared it away, then let his head fall back and groaned inwardly. God, he hurt so fucking bad.

It was a process A) getting out from under the bed B) finding his clothes C) finding that thankfully no one thought to check his jacket pockets when they peeled them from his body and D) dressing all while making the least amount of noise possible in order to not wake the peacefully slumbering body on the bed. It was particularly difficult putting his trousers back on, his body was many many slices of pain and bending exacerbated everything.

He stood watching Reynold sleep for several minutes, just studying the man who had taken his sister and turned her into something she was never meant to be: whore, addict, diseased, dead. None of these things were supposed to happen to a twenty-year-old girl with a supernova-bright future. He left after a while, searching the house to see if anyone else was there; all the partygoers had gone home. It was late in the morning, just after eleven, and the sun was weak and grey as it filtered through the smog. The light filtered through the tiny, dirty plate-glass window, shining directly across Reynold as if illuminating a cruel, evil god.

Daeved fumbled with the revolver in his coat pocket at first, but his hand was steady as he aimed, and eventually fired. Reynold never made a move. The pillow he used as a silencer worked like magic; the shot barely made a sound.

The blood and brain spatter looked almost artistic.

Daeved left the rundown-yet-not house unhurriedly, careful not to look suspicious. Just another partygoer, leaving late. He passed through the kitchen without pause; the boy chained to the bed wiped cleanly from his mind.


Reynold hadn't come back so he waited.

He must have been having a party because a lot of people had come to visit, and he hoped he'd made Reynold proud with every one of them.

But he hadn't had a visit yet.

He whimpered, chewing his already torn away and bleeding nails and looking out of the window, the only way he'd know how early or late it was. He'd fucked a lot of people and they'd all been very excited about something but he didn't really get involved; he'd learnt to hear selectively early on in the game.

He shifted on his creaking bed making the chain rattle, the chain attached to a cuff around his threadbare-skinned wrist. It wasn't necessary as the chains in his head shackled him to Reynold more firmly than anything physical could; the manacle was more of a display of affection to him. He was important enough to be chained down so no one could steal him. But where was Reynold?

He stayed awake until his body pulled him down into sleep from exhaustion and woke to the sound of thumping upstairs. He sat up eagerly and stared at the damp patched, plaster cracked ceiling, knowing that Reynold was up and about. He heard the heavy tread of footsteps up and down the staircase and he stared at where he knew the door to be each time, waiting. It never opened.

He heard a lot of noise upstairs, the sound of people talking and a crackling like radio noise from outside his door. He chewed his lip raw but still waited in the weak light from his window, waited all day until the noise subsided and the thumping stopped until he was left alone again in the dark. The air came through cold and made him shiver compulsively but it didn't fret him as much as Reynold's absence. He'd never been left alone this long.

The policemen who had come out to 'deal with' Reynold's body after he had been found weren't surprised that this had happened. They didn't notice the hidden door and the boy behind it had been taught not to make a sound while the door was closed.

He stayed up all night til the next morning and by then had to slink into the corner by his bed and designate it as the toilet. He knew he'd be punished for it but it was better than soiling the bed. He crept back to the mattress and sat watching the door again. By day three Reynold hadn't appeared and he had resorted to licking the condensation of the window to try and stem his thirst. His stomach was making sounds but he could manage being hungry for a little while longer.

He had the sinking feeling in the pit of his stomach next to the hunger that told him he'd done something wrong. Maybe Reynold wasn't coming back for him. The pain in his heart hurt the most of all and towards the end of day three, another night alone in the dark, he gave up, curled up and wept into the quiet.


Daeved hid out for a few days, letting the fervour die down. News of Reynold's death travelled fast through the less savoury parts of town, and Daeved was sure to sound just as apathetic as everyone else when heard how the cops had found Reynold stretched out, naked, on his bed with half his brains blown out, creating a fanning pattern on the headboard. One of the many 'messenger' boys Reynold had employed found him that way and called the fuzz.

No one was sympathetic. Most were relieved.

He decided to revisit the place on a whim, because it still didn't feel real to him. Reynold, his sister's tormentor and, ultimately, her cause of death, gone for good. He had to make sure; it all still felt like a dream, that day. That night. He didn't know if any of those men had used condoms. He hoped not a one did; he wanted to infect them all. They all deserved to die deaths as horrific as the one his sister had, and he knew, inevitably, he would, too.

It was raining and very early in the morning when he finally made his way back. Pushing his hair out of his face, he descended the steps in the black of night; someone had busted the streetlight out front in a weird sort of effigy. The house hadn't been tagged yet, but now it was only a matter of time. Daeved went to pick the lock, but it had already been done.

The house had been pillaged already. Daeved picked his way through the leftover rubble, none of it worth a thing, and made his way upstairs. When the cops finish with a crime scene, they don't clean it up afterwards. The blood fan was still there, the bed left perfect because who wanted a bloodstained bed that someone else had died in? Bad mojo, bruddah. Bad mojo.

Daeved stayed up there for a long time. He sat on the floor of the wall opposite, looking at the blood like it was a long-lost relative. He was high on adrenaline, knowing it was he who had done it, who had taken away a source of pain for many people in this town. Knowing that he had avenged his sister. He told her that, aloud, in that room, his hands steepled in front of him, and said a prayer for her. He told her that he had done it for her, and wasn't she proud, watching him from above?

The gun was long gone, tossed in a river the morning he'd killed Reynold. Funny how when witnesses were dragged in about that night, no one seemed to really remember anything about Daeved save for his ass. And since he hadn't been cruising since the incident, the cops had nothing to go on. Oh well. Daeved couldn't begin to care.

The fuzzy dark grey light of four am was stretching silent as a cat over the house when Daeved made his way back downstairs to the kitchen. He had to hug the wall in order to make his way around all the strewn trash. It wasn't until his fingers found a groove in the wall he hadn't noticed before and, looking up close, saw the hairline crack in the wall, did Daeved even remember what he had seen that night before Reynold had taken him upstairs and fucked him raw.

He remembered a flash of flesh, of dark eyes and pale skin, and mute boy looking out at him as partners changed in the fucked-up do-si-do rape that was probably the boy's entire life. He remembered someone who made him think of Annie.

Daeved's fingers found purchase again, and pried the hidden door open.


part two.

He'd been drifting in a crumple on his bed, barely different from the bed sheets piled beside him, half asleep and half delirious. He felt weak and shivered compulsively every so often, sick with some kind of weak flu and a cough that was the only small noise he allowed himself to make. He was monochrome apart from edging in blood and the places where his bruises were still green-purple. Otherwise he was grey and dark and pale. The cuff around his wrist had rubbed where he'd moved back and forth from the corner, as far as the length of chain would allow towards the door as he sought for any kind of life other than his own outside, futile. He'd made it worse by itching it and tearing at already torn skin.

He'd given up on sitting up and only rose to lick the water off the window where he could reach it, little tongue licks smearing the glass. He thought the sound of weight on the stairs outside was some imagined dream but he couldn't think the same about the heavy tread across the living room floor. He sat up, forcing himself up on his arms (favouring the injured wrist) and went utterly still with the loudness of listening. His breath caught and forced him to cough but he stilled again in case he WAS imagining it. The sound of steps on the ceiling, over the floor in the room above him.

Reynold.

His heart didn't so much flutter like a bird but raced like a chav in an over customised metro. He froze, his head studying the damp cracking ceiling like it was his own personal messiah. He whimpered quietly, hearing the sound stop but silenced himself when the footsteps came back downstairs.

He held still, silent, bathed in yet more grey from the single window. He couldn't stop himself whimpering compulsively, a shivering desperate mess on the bed, as the door opened and even that light blinded him. He stretched out as far as the chain let him, reaching out awkwardly sideways and begging, his voice the driest thing in the room. "Please, please, please," shaking like his frame. He wasn't even aware it wasn't him, wasn't the god in his restricted four-walled world.

If it was dark in the house, as Daeved hadn't dared a light in order to not alert the neighbors, it was darker still in this little tiny, filthy, cold room.

The first thing Daeved noticed was the smell. Godawful, it smelled of shit and piss and stale, horrible sex. The underlying tinge of copper was stagnant, old, there and not like a memory; a lot of blood had been lost in that room, Daeved thought wildly, but only in fractional increments. A little here, a little there, it always turns to a lot eventually...

The single window afforded no light, really, just a grey, abysmal world outside this black one. The dry, rasping voice sounded young and tired and scared, lost somewhere in the black room. The hope that the boy had somehow been found disappeared and the guilt Daeved had yet to feel over Reynold's murder crashed down on him, making him stagger in disbelief for a moment. Daeved could hardly see a thing, and he knew he had to do it; he needed to see. Chancing that no one had paid attention to that single window in a long while and would continue to do so, and on the utilities having not yet been turned off, Daeved felt for the switch. He flipped it.

Wincing at the piercing light, Daeved held up a hand to shield his eyes. It took a moment. He blinked into the room; the first thing he saw was the boy, man, human (just barely) attached to the bed. The boy was naked and smattered with greening, blueing bruises, filthy and his hair was tangled, his lips dry and cracked and bleeding in places. The cuff that kept him attached to the bed was wrapped around an arm so thin and pale it looked like bone, as if the cuff had rubbed away the boy's skin altogether. And he was reaching out to Daeved.

God, he wanted to cry.

It was all his fault.

"Shit," Daeved said first, in a breath to himself, his hazel eyes wide and unblinking, locked on this forgotten boy, staring in obvious horror. "Shit," he repeated, louder, his brain on lock-down in safe mode. Higher thought processes were impossible at the moment.

The boy watched the silhouette of god move to block out the light and held his position, reaching out to him but silent now, still begging with the lines of his body and bones for forgiveness. He felt that he had to have been being punished; he'd never been ignored for so long and it was only his unwavering love for the man who'd put him where he was in the first place that kept the thought that he'd been abandoned out of his mind.

He watched silently, confused by the way 'Reynold' lingered in the doorway, making no moves to come over and spread his legs to take him. He waited, trembling still and suppressing a cough until the lights burned on like a scalding sun. He yelped and covered his eyes with his free arm, blinded by the light that left blanked out after images in his eyes. He stumbled back, wanting to anchor himself by sitting on the bed. He was short though and fell to the floor beside the bed, catching himself on the edge without serious injury.

Not that it would have made a difference.

The slack in the chain made it possible for him to curl up with his head in his knees and his elbows shielding him for the unforgiving starkness of the light, leaving nothing about him secret. He caught the sound of soft swears and whimpered almost reflexively. "I'm sorry... I'm sorry," he stammered in his graveyard trainwreck voice. "I'm sorry, don't... don't leave me alone in the dark again please, don't leave me alone in the dark, please."

It was like Daeved was in a trance, staring off at this boy, locked on him and unmoving, maybe sort of hoping that he wasn't seeing what he was. It was his brain trying to protect itself from the horrors in front of it, like when a person first glances at gory crime scene photos. It takes a while to process. Daeved's mind was refusing point-blank to acknowledge that the starved, dirty, grey and blue boy in front of him was really real.

Until the boy moved.

As he flailed off the bed, catching himself with a hollow thud to the floor that sounded nothing like an actual human body hitting it, Daeved was spurred into action. He finally entered the room, his old, worn boots scraping at the dust on the floor that looked only slightly disturbed. No one had been inside it, confirming Daeved's suspicions. When he had killed Reynold, he had unknowlingly left this boy for dead, too.

Crouching low, the knees of his jeans in the dust, Daeved sat himself by the boy's side and tried to find a place to touch him that wouldn't hurt the boy; there very nearly wasn't a spot, he was so multicoloured. He settled on a neutral shoulder, like Switzerland in all the chaos of bruising. Placing his hand on it, he made his touch gentle and said to the boy, finally, "Come on, we're getting you out of here."

The boy could tell from the voice that this wasn't Reynold but by then he didn't really mind. Despite what had happened he craved that human touch, letting him know that the other person's presence wasn't some fevered hallucination and that he really wasn't alone. His frame juddered at the contact and he turned and nuzzled his face into the hand on his shoulder like a cat, or more like a dog, something more animal than human either way.

He made a sound similar, grateful at the contact and begging for more, desperate for something he couldn't verbalise. He turned his head and sucked Daeved's finger like he was trying to make him come in his pants just because that's what he did when something was put near his mouth.

He let the finger go and grabbed Daeved's arm with fingers that pinched a little too hard. "Daddy's letting me out?" he asked, sounding completely shell-shocked. "Did he forgive me, am I a good dog now?" He was almost shaking with the need to know this. "Where is he, is he coming for me, where is he?" he was getting more and more desperate, his fingers tightening enough to bruise without his realisation.

'Daddy'? Daeved was repulsed by the nickname; something that vile had to belong only to Reynold. It sounded like something he would demand from his toys, and that's exactly what the boy rubbing against him and looking at him so desperately was.

He reminded Daeved so completely of Annie.

"Uh..." Daeved floundered, unsure of where to go with this bizarre scenario. He hadn't come to the house to take anything away except the satisfaction of an overdue job well fucking done, and the feeling that maybe his sister's death was a little vindicated. Okay, maybe not, but it sure as fuck helped.

Except... now he was leaving with way more than he had ever bargained for. He couldn't just leave the dirty, starved boy here, Daeved knew he would die. He knew, in his gut, that now that Reynold was gone no one else in the world was looking for this boy. No one else cared. As if anyone ever had.

"Yeah. You're a good... boy." Daeved couldn't bring himself to refer to him as 'dog.' He petted the kid's head, brushing matted hair out of big, haunted eyes. "Can you stand?" He focused on the cuff; he needed to get it off.

The boy didn't even cower but whined low in his throat when Daeved reached out to his head, expecting to be hit for speaking out of turn and not bothering to try and stop it. There wasn't anything left of him that hadn't already been hit and he knew it was pointless to even try shielding himself.

The unusually gentle brush of fingertips across his over-warm forehead startled him so much that he went through flinching and out into holding perfectly still, shaking. He was a good what?

The boy opened and closed his mouth a few times, eventually shutting it and nodding, holding onto the bed and using it to slowly and agonisingly pry himself up from the floor. He stood shakily on unbalanced feet, teetering ever so slightly and using the bed once more to keep himself stable. "A-are you going to fuck me for daddy?" he asked, his voice so dry that the words stuck in his first syllables. He put his hand to Daeved's hip and used it more to hold onto than anything sexual, although that line ran under everything this boy did as that was all this boy was.

"Please, please... if I'm a good dog for you, please tell me, will daddy come. Will- I want daddy... please." He leant against Daeved so hard it was almost as if he'd collapsed into him. "I need daddy please, I need him so bad." He brought his mouth close to Daeved's neck, the chain chiming gently as he moved his hand to cling to the neck of Daeved's shirt, breathing hotly against the skin of the boy who'd brought the blinding knives of light into his soft dark world.

Daeved's arm hovered over the boy as he worked his way vertical, not touching in the way someone wouldn't touch a burn victim because they would be too scared to hurt them. He didn't touch until he was touched back, a light hand on the boy's arm, unpossessive but firm. He shook his head at him. "No, I'm not going to… fuck you," hesitating because the question was asked so innocently, in a way Daeved never thought humanly possible. So wrong, in so many ways.

He held the boy as he collapsed against him, guilt washing over and bathing him, like acid rain and roofing nails. God, how he'd fucked up. God, how this kid was fucked up. Daeved had considered himself jaded enough by the world to understand it and everything in it, but this... was completely out of his league. He resisted the urge to comfort the boy with a kiss to the forehead or anything quite like that as he knew it would be misconstrued. This boy, however long Reynold had kept him, had only ever known the world of this room. After what had happened to Daeved himself that last night he had come here, he had a very good idea of what this boy's world consisted of.

"Daddy, h-he… He asked me to take you away. You don't belong here anymore." Daeved tried to keep his voice as firm as his arms as he held the boy to him, trying to warm up his cold, grey skin. "We have to go."

The grey and wire-made boy didn't understand 'not going to fuck you' and this complete break from his expectations threw him for a rollercoaster more than a loop. He would usually have been fucked by now and this drawn out nothing was making him twitchy, although it wasn't noticeable through the trembling he was suffering under anyway.

He pressed himself to Daeved to create as much bodily contact as possible, partly because he was faltering trying to stand up on his own and partly because he'd been brainwashed to do so. The things Daeved was telling him cracked something in the foundations of where he was standing. "Daddy wants me to go away?" he asked, his voice tiny and terrible. "I, wasn't I good enough, aren't I good enough? Daddy doesn't... why?" his voice pleaded like a man with a hood over his head who could still smell guns. "I can't go," he pointed out, weary like dry leaves in autumn. He moved his wrist, pulling the chain taught and further worrying the damaged skin there; he barely flickered an eye at it. "See how much Daddy loves me."

Yeah, Daeved could see how much 'Daddy' loved his little dog... and how much his dog loved his daddy. His gaze traced the length of chain from wrist to bedpost as the boy held up the standard police-issue handcuff--only in singular form--and saw that the chain was only lazily looped through a bar, like someone would tether a dog outside a coffee shop. The self-created, or not, analogy remained true.

Daeved wanted to comfort the boy; he seemed to be nearing hysterics. However, they had no choice but to get out of there as soon as they quite possibly could. One, it wasn't going to stay dark forever and two, the stench was starting to get to Daeved. How the boy could exist in such squalor even Daeved, who lived on the streets six months out of the year, couldn't understand or believe.

But where, once the boy was free, would Daeved take him? It's not as if they could just walk into the nearest shelter and expect no one to ask questions. Even if the boy would leave willingly, which Daeved was starting to think wouldn't happen. Leading the boy to the edge of the bed, he sat him down and reached, stretching his body in order to stay as close to the boy as possible, his fingers touching the bedpost. He unlooped the chain one-handed and held it in his hands like a leash. He turned and opened his mouth to ask, 'Do you have any clothes?' but the question seemed so odd to ask someone when he didn't even know their name.

"Excuse me... do you have a name?"

The boy let himself be led to and pushed down on the bed by the boy who'd told him such disturbing things. He readied himself to lie back and have his limbs spread apart and screwed down once again and was impossibly surprised when this didn't happen. He watched with eyes huge and smashed as the strange stranger broke the chain he'd become so used to and held it in his hands like it meant nothing.

He whimpered and shifted on the bed, uncomfortable and ill and confused and afraid. Despite this, his training was too ingrained for him to not answer the question as it was asked of him. "I think my name is Boy. But Daddy calls me lots of things," he said stilted. "Why. I don't think you're allowed to do that." He pulled hesitantly on the chain by pulling it where it was attached to his wrist. "If I leave the room and Daddy isn't here," his voice sunk to a whisper, "he gets mad." He put his hand high up on the inside of Daeved's thigh and rubbed there insistently. "Tie me back up and I promise I'll be a good dog, please, please!"

Boy?

A wave of nausea that had nothing at all to do with the smell of human waste overtook Daeved for a moment. How could anyone do this to another human? Though, he really shouldn't have been surprised by all this, considering what Reynold had done to his sister; but this, it was all too shocking. It made tears sound thick in Daeved's throat, tears he couldn't swallow back. "God," he said, a knee-jerk reaction, one he couldn't tame and one he regretted the minute he spoke. The last thing this—Boy—needed was to know he was pitied. He wouldn't understand it.

"Reynold—Daddy, he… gave you to me. I won you, you're mine now and you have to come with me." Daeved was pretty certain this was not the correct way to do things but he needed the boy to obey him. Plus, in a way that was how things were done, wasn't it? To the victor go the spoils… and Daeved couldn't think of a surer victory than killing one's opponent… even if said opponent had no idea he was even involved in the game.

Gently prying Boy's hand away from his thigh—as if he could even get aroused in this situation—Daeved grabbed his elbow and urged him up as he stood. "Come on, we have to get you clothed and then you're coming with me. And no questions." Daeved had no idea if he could pull this off. His voice was about as commanding as a little girl's.

Boy flinched hard when Daeved swore, fully expecting to be smacked for whatever transgression it was that he had made to cause the other boy to blaspheme. He didn't understand the strange sound in the new person's voice as he said it and it made him more afraid than if he'd known.

The next thing Boy heard made him suck his breath in so hard he almost choked, tearing up from more than just the sudden inhalation. "Daddy gave me away?" He couldn't understand that either; what Daeved had told him had just amounted to the fact that everything his life was built on had fallen from under him out of it's own free will. He pulled uncomfortably at the cuff around his wrist, fretting as he was still untied and it only underlined what Daeved had told him.

He tensed and stood at Daeved's urging as the other boy stood up too, curling his fingers round the chain where he could. He looked fretfully back to his bed and then out at the just a little less than dark light from the open door. He looked up at the new boy as best he could without actually making eye contact. "I-I'm not allowed outside, I'm not allowed to wear things unless, unless Daddy. Unless Daddy says I can," he finished, cringing from the punishment he imagined would follow his transgression.

"But Reynold doesn't own you now. I do." Okay. Daeved was going to have to summon everything in him in order to get through this night, this day, this... God. He stopped. What was he going to do with this kid once they got out of here? It wasn't like he could just take care of him the rest of his life... whatever was left of it. He needed a plan, and so far the one he had didn't go any further than 'get out of there.'

"I own you now... Boy." Daeved cringed. "Okay, I can't call you that." He reached over and plucked the old, dusty blanket from the bed and dropped it over the thin boy's shoulders. "Here, wrap up in that. You don't have any other name? Anything else you can remember anyone calling you?" he asked, his eyes large and searching on the ash boy's face.

Boy whimpered as Daeved drove the nails of the coffin of everything he was used to further in, like they'd pierce his ribcage and enter his bloodstream to be carried around his body and tearing it into shreds from the inside out. It hurt more than ribs crunching in half like tree limbs and he wanted to hold himself as he'd done when that had happened only this pain wasn't just stopping him from catching his breath.

He opened his mouth to question but closed it as Daeved covered him in the filthy blanket from his bed; it was being aired out for the first time on the boy's narrow shoulders and it displayed like Joseph's macabre coat of many colours as he curled it around him, looking as if he was transgressing against his sense of decency, the whole concept flipped upside down.

"Uhm, I... people call me lots of things," he said again, shifting his aching weight from tired foot to tired foot, the chain chinking gently. "My name is Boy, they call me slut and whore and, uhm, bitch. I don't know, they call me lots of things," he repeated himself, distressed at the strange questions and unusual situation. "Will, uhm. When are you going to fuck me?" he asked, almost whimpering. "If I make you pleased will daddy take me back? What- have I been a bad dog is that why? I'll be good... will you, please. Please tell daddy I'm a god dog please.." He dropped to his knees slowly, more out of fatigue at using his unused legs than anything else (even before he'd been abandoned he'd rarely had to stand) and clutched at Daeved's knees, resting his forehead on them. "I'm a good dog."

Daeved was losing patience already. Yes, the whole thing was a giant travesty against mankind, yes Daeved was aghast at what that motherfucker had gotten the audacity to do to another human being. But on the same hand, if Daeved was going to help the poor kid, the kid needed to be willing. The absolute obedience beat into the boy made Daeved wonder if he was going to have to be a little (or more than) mean in order to get him to do as he needed.

And when the boy fell to his knees, hugging tight onto Daeved like a child mourning the loss of a parent, Daeved knew they had to get out of anywhere familiar if he was going to have any chance at saving this boy.

"Reynold isn't coming back; Reynold's gone. The sooner you realize that the better we'll all be." He grabbed the boy's bone-framing, paper-thin-skinned shoulders and yanked him back up, looking him dead in the eyes. "If you don't come with me, you will just die here, because no one else will come looking for you. Reynold doesn't care about you anymore." He faltered; he couldn't do this, but he had to. He looked back down at the chain as it clinked emptily between them, hitting the frame of the bed. "Is there a key to your cuff that you know of?"

Boy didn't flinch at Daeved's cutting words, just ripping him apart more inside. He breathed in sharply once as Daeved hauled him to his feet, still expecting to be hurt for his indiscretions. He was stunned into rabbit-stillness at the shock of one of daddy's friends making direct eye contact, black lying stark against icy winter shades, so the impact of what the boy said next sank in directly through them and into the most secret and sacred parts of him, resonating deep. His eyes widened a little at the final knell but he had no other reaction until the enormity of what he was being told sunk in and he felt his heart break.

He barely stood, teetering marginally back and forth on cold feet before he trained his eyes down to the cuff in question. He shook his head before looking back up at the new boy, this man who severed the final warmth from his body. "It's my present," he said, blinked once and then the first tears were there, falling silent and steady down his cheeks, eerie against Boy's silent movie face. "I'm not supposed to take it off. I'm a good dog. I'm not supposed to take it off." he spoke as he had before, as if he wasn't crying, seeming barely aware of his wet face. Tears dripped off his chin unrecognised. He just stared at Daeved with eyes emotionless bar what was falling from them now.

Daeved watched the fat, generous tears trail down Boy's face, watched them create streaks in the dirt, wash lines clean, white against grey. Picket fences on his cheeks. Daeved watched for a second only, then rose a hand to wipe the tears away with shaky fingertips.

He wasn't feeling too good; it was one of his bad days, he could tell. That was how he categorised them; today was bad, perhaps tomorrow would be good. He shook a rattling breath out of his lungs and hoped he hadn't contracted pneumonia quite yet. He'd gotten his first slow-healing bruise just the other day, and it scared the living shit out of him. He figured the HIV had moved to full-blown AIDS while he'd not been looking, but he was too chickenshit to go to the free clinic to find out for sure.

He was HIV-positive because when his sister had found out she was a carrier for the disease, she had cried for days in his arms, bemoaning her gone life. She didn't want to die alone, she whispered to him, her thin fingers clutching at his arms like bird feet, her makeup at her chin. She couldn't die alone. God, she just couldn't, she was too scared.

And so Daeved had, while she was asleep, taken a needleful of her blood and injected it straight into his system. He'd found out two months later that he was successful. He was positive.

He'd done it all for Annie, but now she was gone and he was left to die alone.

"Please stop crying," Daeved whispered, hugging Boy to him like a loved, cherished child. "I'm sorry, I'm sorry, but I have to do this. I'm so sorry." He bent and lifted Boy in his arms, seeing if he could carry his weight; he could, but only just so. "We have to go."

Boy didn't move as Daeved's trembling hands neared his face and then smoothed his cheeks over; he didn't even realise what was happening with his face until Daeved asked, -asked- him to stop crying. He was unresponsive to the hug, merely lifting his hand to his face and wiping the filthy planes with the back of his hand, sniffing once after he'd destroyed the picket fences to tornado destruction.

Boy swallowed hard as he was lifted, automatically holding onto the other boy as he was lifted from his aching feet. He said nothing, staring intently and unreadably at Daeved as the sick boy apologised to him. He only closed his eyes when Daeved announced that they had to leave. He physically shook at the idea, being removed from the room that had been his home for years, leaving daddy behind him, daddy who was the creator of his world and of him, who was the only person who loved him truly. He knew, he told him this at the end of every night, taking him from behind or on his back, against the wall, anyway.

"Good little bitch, good dog, boy, good dog... you know daddy loves you, don't you. Tell daddy you know he loves you, you little whore, say it, tell daddy, tell daddy you fucking need him."

"Daddy..." he whimpered, almost silently. It was doubtful as to whether the boy moving him away from his entire life could have even heard. He held onto the chain hanging from his cuff so tightly that the links imprinted his hands and watched as he was removed from his room.