Kip, the Golden, was quick to grab Rae by the shoulder and yanked the White Stolen up into a standing position. As soon as both Stolen were to their feet, they were moving into the cover of the closest building.
Seconds after the two had entered the building of ruins, the sound of another building crashing to the ground filled the air. There was the familiar sound of panicked voices as the other Stolen, on the other side of town, tried to escape the Enigma that were out for blood.
Every so often, hysterical, almost insane laughter could be heard weaving its way in between buildings. This was a warning, it meant that the Cannibals were out to play and out to cause suffering for the rest of the Stolen.
Kip and Rae flew to the hard wall, filled with holes and scratch marks, and pushed themselves flush to the biting cold concrete, out of sight from the window. The room smelt of blood and urine from previous encounters with the Enigma. The combination of the two smells caused a sick familiarity. It was the scent of fear.
Rae's tongue felt dry and swollen and the White Stolen could feel its heart pounding at almost an impossible rate. Swallowing harshly and blinking twice, the White Stolen quickly shifted its head around the frame of the window.
Moving at an incredibly slow pace, Rae's right eye glimpsed the world outside the building and as Rae went to check the surroundings, the White Stolen's heart stopped.
Rae's entire body froze. Right in front of it was one of the Enigma staring right back at the White. It was an Enigma in the shape of an eye and it was almost the size of a small house.
The Enigma's eye was a white murky colour with a yellow iris that reminded Rae of rotting, infected flesh that had been left to fester. Its eyelids slid close vertically rather than the normal horizontal and there were no eyelashes, only rotting holes dotting and replacing the hairs.
In the seconds it had taken Rae to notice the monster, it had closed the space between the substantially. The entire eye split in half, showing the razor sharp teeth hidden inside. It was smiling at Rae, it knew it had them.
A piercing cry ripped its way up Rae's throat and tore out its mouth. Before the White could think, its feet had turned around, yelling for Kip to run, and raced towards the collapsing stairs they had climbed earlier.
The building behind them blew open in a spray of debris, smacking into Kip and Rae's back, nearly throwing them from their feet.
The pain of being struck was but a faint thought in the back of their heads. It was a good thing; the pain meant they were still alive. However, when the Enigma caught them, they would suffer far worse than a bashed up spine.
Beside Rae, Kip let out a resounding shriek of terror before flinging itself down the stairs, barely bracing itself before hitting the bottom. Rae followed suit, already feeling the Enigma breathing down its neck.
As soon as Rae hit the ground, the White rolled to its feet, nursing what is probably a dislocated arm. The Enigma swallowed the floor where Rae had been a second earlier. Its jagged teeth clawed at the floor, scrapping at the cement and swallowing it whole.
Kip threw itself at the wooden door blocking their escape. Luckily, it was one of the rotting ones because if it hadn't shattered from the Golden's body weight, the Enigma would have had its meal.
The Enigma let out a shriek of enrage after finishing its concrete meal but neither Kip nor Rae looked back. They had been in this situation many times before; hesitation and curiousity would quickly equal their death.
The two Stolen flew down the road, ducking and hiding behind any debris they could find. To run out in the open was plain stupidity when the skies were swarmed with the Enigma, blocking out almost all the moonlight.
The Eye followed them, squirming and sliding in between fallen buildings, in hot pursuit after them. If it could not get by the fallen debris, it would simply swallow it, leaving no trace behind.
"Rae! Left, left! We need to head underground, it will not fit underground!" Kip's voice yelled as it scrambled towards the tunnels.
The tunnels were always swarmed by Enigma much smaller than the Eye but at least it offered a chance of prolonged survival, for they could not outrun the Eye for long.
Rae's bare feet slid across the cold top of the road, quickly switching directions to towards the tunnels.
Suddenly, Rae collided with another Stolen headed in the opposite direction. The White cringed in horror at the thought that it could be a Cannibal, here to make matters worse. However, in the seconds it took Rae to scramble back to its feet, it quickly realized that this Stolen was transparent.
This Stolen was a comrade; it was neither Cannibal nor Dreamer.
"Get up, Orion! Run! The Eye!" Rae screeched, running in towards the tunnels once again.
However, the transparent Stolen was still dazed from the impact of the collision. Orion had apparently taken more of the force to its head and in the moment it took it to recollect itself, the Eye was upon it.
The Eye unhinged its jaw and fell at the ground by the Transparent's feet. The road crunched under the mass of the Eye and with the cement went Orion's right leg. The Eye's razor sharp teeth had jabbed themselves into Orion's leg, tearing the limb from the rest of its body.
Orion cried out in agony, sinking its fingers into the torn ligaments and nerves, trying to slow the gushing blood. Orion's screamed filled the night air, echoing off buildings and harmonizing with other Stolen's screams in the distance.
The Eye threw the Stolen's leg up in the air like it was boasting about its catch, before snapping its teeth down on the limb, shattering the bones. The sick sound of bones being chewed lingered in Orion's ears, leaving promises of what would happen next.
The Transparent Stolen screamed louder, begging for help even though it knew they would go unheard and unanswered.
The Slaughterhouse is a place of survival. There were Stolen who could be helpful but none would risk themselves to save Orion now, his fate was sealed this time.
Orion's eyes rolled around in their sockets before coming to rest on a figure on the ledge of a building a couple feet away.
It was Keelan and it was laughing. Keelan the Black, leader of the Cannibals and the most inhumane of all the Stolen. The Black Stolen was laughing at Orion's misfortune, probably a bit disappointed that it had taken no part in the take down.
A filthy grin cut Keelan's face in two before it spit down at Orion and disappeared into the night.
"B-bastard," Orion managed to choke out as the Eye lifted the Stolen from the ground between its jaws, bending the Transparent's back the wrong way.
The last thing Orion felt was each vertebrae snapping out of place and the warmth of his blood clogging is throat, stopping his screams.
Rae and Kip had not turned around since the moment of the collision, they knew better than that. Both sent out a quick apology to their friend for their lack of aid but at that point, there was nothing they could have done. It is better to have sacrificed one than for them all to have died. Orion wouldn't have wanted that despite what his moment of panic would suggest otherwise.
The tunnel was up ahead, they would be inside soon.
However, both Stolen slid to a stop when they saw a bloody hand reach out of the darkness of the tunnel and into the night.
It was Leon the Yellow, second in command in the Cannibals. Its mouth was open in a silent scream as it dragged itself towards the outside of the tunnel. A quick glance told Kip and Rae that Leon had encountered an Enigma and was already at the loss.
Leon's entire bottom-half had been eaten from its pelvis down. They were almost sad to see the cruel Cannibal clawing at the ground, dragging its bleeding body out of the dark tunnels. Leon's one hand stretched out toward them as if begging for help, grasping at the nothingness that the night sky had to offer.
Rae felt its heart break for the poor Stolen, despite the fact that Leon was almost as cruel as Keelan when he took part in the Cannibal's horrific behavior.
The White Stolen had always had a soft heart and it was the main reason why Rae lost to the Enigma time and time again. Rae would always attempt to help the weak and in the process, lose its own life.
However, as Rae took a step forward as to aid the fallen Stolen, a large claw came out of the tunnel and rammed itself into the head of Leon. Leon was killed instantly, leaving his still bleeding body speared on the claw.
Rae stumbled backwards, falling onto Kip's chest as both watch in sick fascination as Leon's body was dragged back into the tunnel, leaving only a bloody trail and brain matter where the Yellow Stolen once lay.
Kip squeezed Rae's shoulders before quickly guiding them away from the scene and, apparently, already occupied tunnels.
The Stolen should be used to their bloody and gore filled lives but despite what one may think, one can never get used to seeing someone die, even if they were a Cannibal.
Both of the Stolen were still having a hard time tearing their eyes away from the tunnels, both horrified at what they had witness but also in fear that the Enigma would come for them next. After backing a safe distance away, the Golden and White Stolen turned around.
Only to come face to face with about a dozen Enigma.
The Enigma were floating in the air, staring them down. Some with large yellow pupils and others with no eyes at all. Enigma never hunted together, they were proud beasts and wanted to have all bragging rights. They usually just tried to kill each other if one got in the way. In all the time that the Stolen had been banished to the Slaughterhouse, not once had the Enigma hunted together. The Enigma were chaotic and came in large masses, yes but never working together.
There was no escaping a pack. Not the two of them.
Kip and Rae turned their backs together and slumped to the ground, curling up as much as possible in hopes that the Enigma would crush their heads first so they wouldn't feel as much pain.
The last thing the two of them heard was the victorious cry of the Enigma and the raspy cackling of Keelan.