For any of my brothers and sisters so unlucky as to not get this year's Christmas card. Take a look here.
Isn't it cute? They think they're intimidating. I would go so far as to compare it to a rat killing a mouse, then presenting the corpse to a gathering of cats. Yes, the corpse is very nice. Bravo. However, whether you are a killer or not isn't quite the question, my dear confused Cousins. What now truly begs to be answered... is how long it will be before you yourselves realize that, no matter how closely you make yourself like US... you are still just as much our prey as that little mouse was.
And, yes - while a rat is capable of killing a cat... I'm sure I am not the only one who would still be placing their last dollar on the feline in this equation. Agreed?
At least they're not calling themselves "Knigths" anymore.
Ah, the work of a teacher is never ending. Even if it is just for spelling errors.
Sometimes it astounds me how the teaching instinct clicks into play in certain situations for me. I suppose it is a trait that I will never completely lose. After all, I may have walked away from that life what feels like eternity ago... but what made me choose that career-path to begin with still beats strong. I can't exactly deny it. Won't deny it. It comes to the surface again and again and again.
Critiquing an opponent - whether be Proxy or Runner - in mid-combat to improve their style.
Cracking some sense into the skull of a whiny Runner who believes their hand in this Game is so UNFAIR compared to others.
Offering advice to the mind of a shattered Fighter to draw out the struggle longer. Granted, it is usually poisoned advice, but you can't exactly blame me for that, now can you? I am a Proxy, after all.
Yes. I am a Proxy. A Proxy who despises simple tasks. Who basks in challenges. Always pushing. Attempting to make my missions even more difficult. More... amusing. Always expecting more. Demanding more. Especially after I've known the person in question long enough for repeat encounters. Things get dull when there isn't any progress made. Another reason why the life of a Runner was... not suited to me. Too many dead-ends. At least, as how I am now... I have my answers. I have what I want most. I can push as far as I want to go. I can cross as many lines as I desire...
I murdered my own "Handler" for of this exact reason.
The attempt itself nearly killed me. I could barely crawl by the end, leave alone walk... but it was well worth it.
After all, the only one with any right to limit me... is myself.
The Highers also pull on my background, or so it seems. They have done so at least twice this far into my career, but then again, I could just be that unlucky. You see, the organization of Proxies across the country is a lot more... sophisticated than what it appears the majority of the time. There is an entire culture running right under the nose of society as you see it - like an infection that is only becoming more and more swollen and discolored with the passing of time, but has not yet burst to the surface in puss and poison alike. And it is not only this great land, of course. Every country has their own way of handling their lines. Handling their missions. However, the basics remain the same.
Everyone, I believe, is already aware of the chain of command.
The Highers take care of the grander details and sometimes pose as... "Handlers" for some Proxies.
The Proxies handle missions which include Eliminations, Conversions, Spooks, and combinations there of. Proxies can also be "Handlers" in some cases.
The Hallowed / Hollowed assist the Proxies as brainless cannon fodder. Less common these days. But the Broken do have uses.
Amongst other things that are passed around from one level to another... training of new recruits is, basically, our own version of Jury Duty. Everyone despises it and must suppress any and all inclination to tear the face off of whomever he or she received the news from. It truly is a pain. A pain which is the burden of those who manage to survive a certain length of time and show actual skill.
In other words, you'll never see Rhodes do it.
But, as I recall, you have read of it happening before.
It... is a reason to die early. It truly is.
I've done it twice. The first time... would be when I first met the former Morningstar. And eight other morons to be analyzed as well. All of them having been Converted from all over the States. All believing they were a big deal. Obnoxious. Rude. Reckless. ...And usually with very idiotic names.
Shooter was the very last of that group to die in the name of our Father.
I'd imagine that was something he was proud of.
I tested the group much like he himself tested his own hopefuls. My Final Exam was rather simple. Each Proxy was assigned to a pair of friends. One of those friends was to be killed. But not by them. By the other friend. How this was achieved was up to them. Cifer made the largest impression from the lot. His enthusiasm for his job was infectious. He could get the entire class whooping and shouting and calling out - revving them up for their own future careers as he dove right into his. Those that didn't appreciate his flavor of humor had spent the class in their chosen corners glaring at him. They took him as a chauvinistic cartoon villain.
Or, rather, we all took him as that. Most of us just approved of it.
After the Final Exam was complete, I had dismissed the lot of them immediately before I had went to let Kali and Loki out of their cage. After all, no point in letting the meat of the corpses go to waste. They might as well have their fill.
Shooter was the only one to hang back. He questioned... as to why I had brought "Pigeons" along with me. I explained that they were the only good company I could find, and, when I told him their names, he accused me of being a pretentious idiot. He proclaimed my own name - Gauntlet - was beyond lame. Laughed at me for naming myself after a piece of clothing. Then criticized me for wearing a gauntlet at all as it was "too obvious" of a weapon.
In all honesty, he made me miss my classroom. Teaching.
I knew he would serve Father well.
From how I understand it, that was just before he had recon duty with a certain Hope Bearer who only just recently woke up from la-la land. Honestly, I had pegged her as dead. Past her expiry date, if you will. Thought perhaps Mitchy was hauling a corpse around for company sake. Call it crazy, if you will, but after being a Proxy for a certain length of time... let me just sum it up to say that desperation makes for the most interesting kind of creativity.
Speaking of creativity, I have a question for my wonderful readers:
How shall I kill him?
Jerome Dorian White. Also known as "Tripwire."
Twenty-nine years old. First held the honor of our Father's presence in his pathetic life six months ago. Was converted into our ranks four months ago. Defected two weeks ago. Had yours truly put on his tail four days ago. Is receiving the full value of my hosting abilities as of early this morning.
He is a tall man. Brown hair. Blue eyes. More built than myself. Certainly not as quick though. Mental stability seems to vary between rambling and talking to himself... to ranting and yelling at me about my "slavery" under Father. He has plenty of delusions considering his own role in this Game. Seems to be trying his best to shove it all away as what Father "forced [him] to do." Hardly the case. Father does not force anyone to do anything.
Except die, of course... and, occasionally, change their position on a map.
In any case, I had already looked into it. I had found his tirade as a Proxy to be quite typical, really. His altercations with Runners was more into "roughing someone up" than manipulation, but there was an instance or two were he showed knowledge in the latter as well. Also - like his chosen name suggests - he seemed fond of designing traps for his prey to walk into.
In all honesty, I hadn't intended to mention him to you. I was simply going to kill him for his traitorous actions against Father. Plus for having killed one of our brothers in his act of Defecting. Not much interesting to be said of it. Not even the Hunt had been worth mentioning, which was depressing...
But then, amongst a shift of mental focus and rambling nonsense... I heard something that made me pause. Take note. It took a little further coaxing, but now... I am fully aware of the most sickening stain on his soul... and Tripwire hadn't even been created at the time. Tripwire was a butcher of man, woman, and child alike. A thief. A traitor.
And none of that even compares.
His little sister - Tammara - had seen Father as a child. Used to run to her big brother to feel safe. Parents were working most of the time, I've gathered, so he was to look after her. He ignored her plight. Ignored every word she spoke of the matter. Ignored her fears. And then... I suppose she crept into his room at night one time too many. Jerome's young, hormonal mind... decided to make use of her presence. Her... innocence.
My disgust for this... creature in my hold is only matched by my rage.
Far too many options have flashed before my mind to dispose of him.
Far too few of them are painful enough. Slow enough.
As a teacher, I must make this lesson one that will scar onto his soul for several lifetimes to come...
And so... for his crimes against his own kin. His own blood. For this, I turn to you.
How shall I kill him?
Proxies. Runners. I want to hear from all of you. Let us be creative here, my friends. This one has more than deserved it.
In that, I'm certain we can ALL agree.