I am, I am, I am
I said I wanna get next to you
I said I gonna get close to you
You wouldn’t want me have to hurt you too, hurt you too?
I ain’t, I ain’t, I ain’t
A buyin’ into your apathy
I’m gonna learn ya my philosophy
You wanna know about atrocity, atrocity?
I know you want what’s on my mind
I know you like what’s on my mind
I know it eats you up inside
I know, you know, you know, you know
Here I come, I come, I come…
~ Sex Type Thing (Stone Temple Pilots)
With his boots dangling from his fingers by their knotted laces, Victor stood on the roof of the Octagon Innovations building, a 1,600-foot eight-sided monster on South Michigan Avenue at East Monroe.
It ain’t Everest, but those assholes an’ their sherpas don’t climb with just their finger- an’ toe-nails, neither.
An alarm sounded somewhere inside and he smirked as he let his boots drop and lit an expensive eight and a half inch cigar, the pride of Honduras.
Rumor had it that Doc Ock liked pricey stogies. Today’s offering had come in a hand-carved camel bone box. One hundred of these beauties had set him back $115,000 – for a luxury intended to be burned to ashes.
Gotta admit, win or lose, this is a spiffy locale fer suckin’ on rolled up leaves. Annoyin’ a murderous mad scientist by tresspassin’? That’s just cream. They say this walkin’ hentai monster can clock fifty miles per hour an’ tha appendages can strike at ninety feet per second – however this goes down, bet I won’t get bored.
He hoped he’d actually get the man himself and not the lawyer that was rumored to run the company.
Looking around as a red and yellow sunset began, he whistled and slipped his sunglasses off. He popped them into their protective case next to the cigar case in his coat’s inner breast pocket and turned in a slow appreciative circle. On the lake side, the water went on forever.
Ya might win tha Most Expensive View contest, Doc. Sorta roof ya can hang out on, roomy – not cluttered up with bullshit. Not sure why he don’t put a helicopter pad up here, but still … I bet it’s a nice break fer a hermit with cabin fever. Fun an’ games aside though, tha bastard’s still a scientist type; ugh – I hope he speaks somethin’ other than Nerd, like fuckin’ English, maybe.
Behind the closed and locked roof access door, he could hear an elevator operating. When the occupant got out of it and unlocked the door, Victor already knew he’d gotten his wish. There were footsteps, but the thump and crush of the metal tentacles was an unmistakable racket.
With the whole roof between them, Victor grinned as Doctor Octopus emerged in his long brown coat with the four ugly heavy brutes he was bonded with ranged around him. The two lower tentacles helped support their combined weight, while a third hung overhead like a cobra and the last one swayed on his left with its Adamantium spike snapped out and ready. Victor would guess he was six foot two, and with the tentacles, he might just be heavier than himself. They were also sheathed in Adamantium, so if it ever came down to a scrap, he could forget the idea of shearing the tech sushi off of the man’s stocky body.
“Me.” Victor pulled his newest steel cigar case out again and selected a second one, a claw cutting the tip of the cap expertly. Holding it out, he tucked the case back into his coat. “Peace offerin’? This here’s a Gurkha Black Dragon – a sweet-ass treasure over a grand a pop. Let’s have us a chat, Doc.”
Victor was fascinated watching him move, even as his hackles began to rise under his coat out of pure instinct as they faced off. He was impressed when one of the tentacles accepted the cigar from his fingers and brought it to the man’s lips. Moving in with a fresh red cedar match and ready to cup his hands to guard the flame from the wind, Victor strangled an instinctual growl as the tentacles came up around him.
He lit and protected the match until the head had burned off down to the cedar. Octavius leaned in to roll the cigar in thick fingers close to the flame to sear it first like a pro. As he puffed to aide in lighting it, Victor stared at the man’s surprisingly sensuous lips.
Pocketing the little steel matchbook case, Victor turned his back on him in a show of bravado to walk to the edge before sitting on the wide stone ledge that bordered it and facing him again. The doctor stood freakishly still, puffing in silence and watching him closely.
“Came t’ visit on a whim, we’re practically neighbors – when I’m in town.”
“How did you discover me?”
Victor tapped a finger on the end of his nose. “Only one person I ever heard o’ combines Adamantium an’ titanium with their scent an’ then goes swingin’ ‘round tha Loop like a high-tech Tarzan.” Victor drew in the cigar’s luscious flavor and blew the aromatic smoke out slow. “A li’l bird told me that Stark’s been tryin’ t’ call out yer alter-ego t’ go t’ that tech conference. I was curious if it was true.”
“It is. Is that all?”
“What, ya gotta quiche in tha oven?”
“Knowing your colorful reputation, I find it incredulous that you climbed this building solely to ask me about Iron Man.”
“Ain’t concerned ‘bout Iron Man – I only care ‘bout Tony Stark.”
Doctor Octavius smiled, showing large blunt teeth – it wasn’t a pleasant expression. “If you’ve been hired to kill Stark, you should hurry. There is another interested party – a man who also discovered my identity and actually tried to sway me to take the job myself. Unless of course, that is who you’re working for.”
Victor hissed. “Whoa – some asshole’s gotta contract out on ‘im? Who?”
“Not a person of your caliber, but still – sometimes the amateurs do get lucky. I wouldn’t worry about it, however – I plan to have this fool killed for discovering me, along with any associates he may have mentioned it to.” The tentacles swayed and the two on the roof crunched closer as the doctor stepped forward. “It is only sporting to warn you that I do not want Stark dead.” The highest tentacle opened its mouth over Victor’s head and shot out a second Adamantium spike.
Reigning in a growl, Victor kept his seat and glared up at the man. “Me, neither.” The surprise written on his face made Victor’s smirk crawl back onto his lips. “I’m a fan, truth be told – so if anybody’s gonna try t’ kill ‘im, they’ll hafta go through me first. So why are ya ‘bout t’ try takin’ me on in ‘is honor, Doc? Ain’t he yer competition?”
“Nothing so mundane is of any consequence. The world needs his inventions and his genius – as it needs mine.”
“Yeah, well, I can get on board with that.”
The tentacles wavered, betraying the uncertainty of their host. “Why do you care about protecting him?”
Victor puffed on his cigar and let the smoke leak from his sharp grin. “I like lookin’ at ‘im – if he’s dead, I can’t do that no more.”
“Don’t really matter t’ me none what ya think ya see, Doc. Now that we’ve established that we’re both against ‘im bein’ dead, how’s ‘bout ya tell me all ya know ‘bout tha meat that wants t’ kill ‘im, an’ I’ll save ya tha bother o’ goin’ out.”
Octavius watched him in silence for a few minutes. “What assurances can you give that you aren’t lying?”
“If I was out t’ kill ‘im, I’d be at that nerd fest now doin’ exactly that. Look at me, Doc – catch tha man outta ‘is suit, ya think I’d have any trouble spreadin’ ‘is guts across a banquet table? Wouldn’t need yer help fer that. Came t’ see ya cuz Stark wants t’ meet ya. I broker that, I get on ‘is good side, capiche? Killin’ ‘im wouldn’t take so much damn effort; ‘Sides, I slashed an’ ate tha last guy that tried t’ pay me t’ whack Stark.”
“Very well, I admit to being … impressed. I can tell you where the man asked me to meet with him, and when. He is the client, looking to hire a killer. I have no idea if he has already found one. If you are serious about protecting him, you may need to shadow Stark, in case this man has found a willing assassin already.”
“I do my best shadow work when I’m aimin’ on killin’, ya know. Sneaky only goes so far otherwise, an’ there’s gonna be ‘genius inventors only’ places in that conference he can go but I can’t – not without violence t’ get me in.”
“How fortunate then that Stark sent me a gift – one I was going to discard.”
“What is it?”
“Access. I will have it brought up.”
Victor knew the man could commune with his metal alien bits, but when he didn’t bring out a phone or hit a button on his door to call anyone, he realized he must have a telepath on staff.
“So who wants Stark dead?”
“A young inventor named George Danelek. I told him I would send someone to meet him, who might be able to do this – just to keep him silent until I could send someone to kill him.”
“Pick me,” Victor teased with a smirk. “Where an’ when is tha meet?”
“North Rush Street, an Irish pub called Pippin’s Tavern. It is directly across the street from the conference hotel.”
“Chosen by an idiot who thought those bloody things were gonna fit in there?” Victor gestured to the tentacles with his cigar.
“I had planned on sending someone other than myself.”
“Yup, but now yer sendin’ me.”
“It was set up for tonight – any time after sunset until closing.” Octavius moved to the door almost as soon as Victor’s twitching ears told him someone was there. It opened and a young man handed his boss a large yellow envelope and closed the door. Octavius faced him again with only one winding metal appendage in guard position. Another took the envelope in its weird mouth and twined, telescoping longer, to offer it toVictor.
Holding the cigar gingerly in his front teeth, Victor opened the unsealed flap and let the contents hit his palm. The thing that caught his eye first was a colorful lanyard attached to a VIP badge.
“Pippin’s don’t close ‘til four in tha mornin’ most nights, so that’s doable. How am I gonna know who Danelek is – spend my evenin’ playin’ private dick?”
“He will likely assume you are the one I sent and approach you. He is a young man, hair darker than mine, and resembles something that would be easy to break.”
“So a chew toy. Probly gonna be a bore, but hey – it’s fer a good cause.”
“I sent an emissary to the conference to warn Stark, but I suspect my message wasn’t taken seriously. The only response I received was essentially a challenge to come and tell him myself. He seems to think this matter is some sort of game.”
“Color me surprised. Give a guy a pair o’ steel britches an’ suddenly he thinks he’s some kinda invulnerable god.”
“He isn’t wearing the armor at the conference at all, according to my emissary. He is at risk without it.”
“Not anymore, he ain’t. I’ll see that this Danelek gets dead so’s he can’t tell nobody ‘bout ya, neither.”
“Stark may need protection, but I assure you, I do not. If you had not come here, it would have been handled.”
“Just bein’ neighborly.” Puffing the cigar as he rolled the envelope loosely and stuck it inside his coat, he stood, picked up his boots, and grinned at Octavius. “See? I knew we could get along, find a scrap o’ common ground an’ end up stogie buddies. Good chat, neighbor.”
Victor paused after swinging one foot over the ledge to hang his boots around his neck again. “So yer sure tha world don’t need Danelek’s genius?”
“Having investigated his work, I doubt it. At times, those of us with the power to effect change need to weigh the risks and make those changes – for good or ill.”
Victor managed to stifle a shudder. Good thing he’s talkin’ ‘bout murder, cuz that sounded a bit too much like Cueball fer my taste. “Yeah, I ain’t never felt tha need t’ weigh much, but I got me a code an’ it’s served me just dandy. Catch ya next time, Doc – I may need t’ borrow a cup o’ sugar, ya never know.”
Holding the cigar in his teeth again, he tossed a jaunty wave to the man before dropping himself over the edge and beginning the long climb down. When he looked up once, he wasn’t surprised to see Octavius watching him.
~ ~ ~
Walking through the door at 806 North Rush Street was something he’d been doing for over thirty years. The largely Irish clientele had rarely minded him, and on a few occasions when they’d had a scrap going, he’d lent a fist. It also didn’t hurt that they had the best Irish gal around running the place, for the last ten years.
Never got over tha chuckle o’ ‘er parents namin’ ‘er Meara t’ go with tha mouthful name Ó Donnamháin. Playin’ t’ tha stereotype works fer ‘er, though, an’ what tha hell – she’s got tha spirit t’ match it.
“Glenfiddich, Victor?” she asked, smiling to see him.
Her thick ginger red braid, flashing green eyes and freckled pale nose and cheeks were the same as the last time, and the breasts had gotten more magnificent, if that was possible. He’d never fancied swizzle stick women. This one had the kind of hourglass figure that could treat a man right and keep him warm afterward.
“Natch. Ya know me, Meara – nothin’ much changes.” He went up to the bar and leaned over it to kiss her full pink and freckled lips before settling on a stool that had been quickly vacated by an obvious tourist.
“You need to teach me that trick.”
He checked out her gravity-defying apple bottom when she turned to get the bottle and grinned when she came back and winked at him.
“Aw, ya know I’d still fuck ya.”
She opened the new bottle and handed it to him. “I may hold you to that.”
“What, ya ain’t married number three yet?”
“I’m working on it. It’s harder with a wee one in tow, and I’m not twenty-one anymore.” She patted the remainder of a baby tummy.
“I’ve known ya fer a decade an’ I got lotsa years on ya. Thirty-one is just a pup, ya know. ‘Sides, ya still get me stiff, an’ probly every other man that walks in this joint.”
Her bright smile pleased him. She pressed her fingertips under her collarbones – one of his favorite gestures – and her laugh sounded as pretty as a bell. “You’re so sweet, thank you.”
“Tell me ‘bout tha kid.”
“Braden’s two now, he’s a blessing, and he looks like me, thank God. The last ex-husband was such a mess. I should have taken you up on your offer to get me pregnant, instead.”
“Tha night’s still young, darlin’.” Victor’s smirk made her laugh again, which morphed it into an honest smile.
Seeing other customers glancing her way, she told him, “I’ll be right back.”
“Gimme some o’ that Irish talk first, babe: tell me somethin’ sweet.”
“Adhair mé tú, a chuisle mo chroí.” She leaned in to kiss him again.
“Now ya know that’s one I ain’t never learned, so … what’d ya say?”
Meara brushed wayward blonde locks out of his eyes and smiled. “I adore you, pulse of my heart.”
“Mmm, I like that.”
She stroked fingers down a sideburn, gave his cheek a gentle pat, and went to serve other customers and get drinks for one of the waitresses.
Victor watched her figure a moment before he started to glance around the bar. The place was always busy, and with the conference in the Park Hyatt across the street, the crowd would only get thicker.
The door was constantly opening and shutting behind him and he kept all of his senses tuned out of habit. The moment the biker on his left settled his tab and got up, a young black-haired man approached and claimed the stool.
One glance at his eager expression told Victor he was George Danelek, long before he saw the lanyard disappearing inside his suit jacket. He did look breakable, on the cusp of qualifying as a cute twink if he had been maybe five years younger. In tha old game o’ ignore, fuck, or kill, this one checks all three boxes – not necessarily in that order.
“Man, I know you!” he announced, turning to face Victor. “Heard of you, yeah. What’s your name, something flashy…?”
“Pippy Longstockin’s,” Victor answered, pretending to be annoyed at the interruption.
“Funny! Funny and a Cubs fan. Awesome, man.”
“What’ll you have?” Meara asked him, tipping a little smile to Victor.
“Champagne, any kind will do.” When she brought him a flute glass, he drank half of it in one swig. “I remember – it’s ‘Sabretooth’! You’re a rock star! I need to talk to you, buddy.”
“I’m on vacation,” Victor groused.
“You may not want to be, once you hear me out – an easy job and a sweet paycheck, huh?”
“Let’s move.” He got up and headed straight back to the little table behind the column by the ATM machine.
“Guess he thinks that’s covert,” he murmured in Meara’s ear when she offered her cheek for another kiss.
“Go get him, love,” she replied, and winked at his grin.
Victor carried his bottle with him and settled on the stool in front of the cash machine. The table had the usual green plaid tablecloth and squatty round green candle holder. The darker green walls over the wood paneling were decorated with ornately framed mirrors and black and white photos of a much older Chicago – some of which were as familiar to him as the pub was. He popped a claw and began to play with the candle flame.
“So talk. Tha lady an’ me were tryin’ t’ catch up on old times.”
“Tony Stark of Stark Industries is at the conference next door.”
Victor looked at him with a frown. He shrugged off his heavy long coat and draped it over the machine behind him. “I ain’t in tha autograph gettin’ business, boy.”
“That’s good, actually, because I want to hire you to kill him,” he whispered.
“So yer tha one Mr. Ollre wanted me t’ meet.” Victor leaned in, wallowing in the role. “Gonna make it interestin’ fer me?”
“What is your rate?”
Victor swallowed the snarl that tried to escape. He was well-known, feared, and respected in the underworld and most of his established clients arranged things through Obinata. Anyone approaching to hire him cold in person like this generally had the sense to know that his baseline pay was one million per hit. No one breathing insulted him more than once by talking to him like a two-bit knee-breaking thug.
“Make an offer an’ find out.”
“Fifty thousand now, another fifty thousand after the job is done.” The man looked pleased with himself and seemed to expect Victor to be impressed.
“That much?” Victor scratched under his chin. “Well, now.”
“I can get you access as my guest. I snagged the room that connects to Stark’s Water Tower Suite. He’s drunk a lot in there, bringing back women at all hours, making noise – it doesn’t get any easier.”
Victor stretched and caught Danelek admiring the heavy muscles of his torso and arms. The man’s heat rose and Victor arched an eyebrow at him. “Bet yer easy yerself, ain’t ya? Let’s sweeten tha pot – I agree t’ yer terms an’ ya lemme fuck ya up against Stark’s connectin’ door.”
Danelek nearly licked his lips. “Deal – but when you kill him, I want to watch. That suite is 1,850-square-feet and I want to see some of his blood on every foot of it.”
“Sounds like fun. Now tell me all tha intel ya got on Stark – an’ then we can go make some noise o’ our own.”
“There’s a maid trying to send her kid to college; I bribed her into unlocking the connecting door on Stark’s side. I have one of my own inventions in place that can control that door, open it anytime – and on Stark’s end, it will still look and feel perfectly secure. I can tell you how it works –”
“Tell me on tha way there. Intel on Stark?”
“He isn’t in the room much during the day, but he usually goes there when the events are finished and the parties start winding down. He’s the only one staying there, his entourage is down the hall, but he always brings the catch of the day with him for an all-nighter.” Danelek smiled, looking smug. “He brought a new invention to show off but he skipped that panel. I got into his suite and stole it. It hasn’t been reported – he probably hasn’t even noticed it’s missing.”
“What is it?”
“It’s some sort of signal booster for a cell phone. I haven’t had much time to examine it, but it looks like you could make a call in Hell. Solar powered, compact –”
“Where is it now?”
“In my room – want to see it?”
“Sure – after tha first fuck takes my edge off. At least ya didn’t try t’ lure me away t’ see yer collection o’ stamps.”
“Sabretooth, I –”
“Call me Victor, boy.” He reached across the table, put his large hand behind the man’s skull, and pulled him into a kiss over the candle. The fool gasped like a hooked fish when Victor broke the kiss. “Gonna expect t’ hear ya scream it out later when I bend yer ass up over Stark’s corpse an’ fuck ya blind. Maybe use ‘is blood fer lube, huh?”
“Sounds like fun,” Danelek echoed him, smirking. “I heard things about you, like … charges of necrophilia…”
“Yeah?” He snagged his coat and pulled it on again, grabbed his bottle, and stood.
“I want to watch you do that – to Stark. Do I need to add to the fee for extras?”
“Bet not – in fact, with an appetite like that, we might could end up besties before long.”
A smile struck the boy’s face that hinted at a desperate hunger Victor had seen before. It was a particularly nasty kind of obsession – the need to possess, and be possessed, by power. If he was right about that, it was going to be a very fun night indeed.
Before he left with Danelek following him like a puppy, he went to the swinging door at the bar and got a delicious full-body hug from Meara. She kissed him soundly and more than a few regulars let out an encouraging whoop at their display.
“Gotta go t’ work, babe – see ya later, promise.”
“You better – it’s been too long.”
Growling low against her throat, he palmed and squeezed her ass as he pushed their hips tighter together – so she could feel what she’d done to him. “Count on it.” Danelek had moved to the entrance to wait. Victor slapped his palm on the door over his head to open it for him. “After ya,” he offered.
“So you play both sides, huh?”
“Yer assumin’ there’s only two sides. I play ‘em all, boy.” He gave him a wolfish grin as he stepped out into the street to cross over to the hotel.
~ ~ ~
The moment they entered Danelek’s hotel room, Victor noted that the connecting door on this side was standing open to reveal the second door that accessed the suite. He could hear Tony Stark directly behind it. He wasn’t alone, of course – there was a female, and the two had already copulated once. Their scents were muddled by perfume, to his annoyance – it smelled like she had dumped an entire bottle of it on him.
Drunken skirts, no tellin’. He had to work on not growling over it. He’d never been close enough to Stark to really capture his scent deep in his lungs. So maybe wash ‘im later – ya got all night.
Victor listened as a sink ran, and then a refrigerator opened and shut before Stark moved off deeper into his suite. So the kitchen was opposite, likely on the other side of a narrow hall.
After the explanation during the walk over, he could see how the magnetic door device worked and how the man had done it. The simplicity of it – more brash cleverness than gifted genius – started to put Octavius’s opinion of Danelek’s value into perspective. Men like Octavius and Stark were creating things that were changing the world – for better or for worse. Danelek seemed proud of a toy that had helped him commit larceny and the only thing he wanted to use it for was to commit murder.
Or find someone t’ commit it fer ‘im – if this is personal like I figure, why don’t he bloody ‘is own hands? Too soft or too scared – neither o’ which is gonna win my respect one inch. He pretended the science of the door device went over his head to feed the fool’s ego. A fat ego makes a man pay no attention t’ what’s creepin’ up ‘round ‘im. Guess that goes fer Stark, too – but he’s got me watchin’ ‘is back, tha lucky bastard. ‘Sides, that toy could make all this worth my precious time. All I gotta do is see that it’s left in place after I play with my food. Natch, gonna be a hypocrite an’ take it with me – never know when somethin’ like that could come in handy again.
“Here is the cell signal booster,” Danelek spoke from across the room.
Victor set his whiskey bottle down on a dresser and turned to look. “If ya like those clothes, better shed ‘em; I need t’ fuck.”
“We should make noise and get their attention.”
“Don’t worry none ‘bout that.” Victor toed off his boots and started to strip.
“Should… Should I pay you first – the half upfront?” He wandered over to a briefcase on a nightstand.
“Callin’ me a whore?”
Victor grinned when the man balked and went pale. “Pullin’ yer leg, boy. Tha sex is a freebie. We’re gonna finish this up here t’night. Ya can settle up in tha mornin’. Call tha front desk now an’ arrange fer yer guest t’ get help with a porter an’ a rental car by five o’clock. How long ya got this room?”
“For the rest of the week.”
Victor smirked at the man’s back as he picked up the hotel phone and made the arrangements. When it was done and he faced him again, Victor ordered, “Strip.”
Once Victor was nude, his clothes piled on top of the coffee table over his coat, he watched Danelek undress. “Why ya want Stark dead, anyhow? Sick o’ ‘is inventions stealin’ tha spotlight?”
“Something like that.”
Victor ignored the lie. He’d get the truth soon enough. “Got any other toys? A dildo? Ball gag? Ya seem like tha type.”
“Yer gonna open yer ass fer me an’ I’m gonna watch.”
As peep shows went, the nerd boy wasn’t a complete novice, but Victor couldn’t concentrate on his too-earnest performance on the bed with Stark so close. He got up out of the armchair he’d landed in and stalked to the door. Deliberately making a racket banging their door against the wall, he turned and dropped his shoulders back against the other one, rattling it as well. It held his weight – so far. Crooking a finger, he motioned for the boy to join him.
“Yes,” Danelek whispered, but Victor kissed him before he could say anything else.
“Changed my mind – no names. Yer gonna draw ‘im with yer good time havin’ noises.” His murmur in the boy’s ear was chased by a low purr that made the gullible idiot shiver.
Impatient, he grabbed him up, not caring if he was ready or not. The boy’s arms circled his neck, one hand grabbing the long braid. Holding the body under the ass and thighs, Victor let gravity help him sink deep into it. Danelek couldn’t move much, but that hardly mattered. Victor just used his arms to lift and lower him up and down his cock. He might have been borderline bored in a few strokes – the boy was too clingy by half, as suspected – but then he heard Stark and the perfume woman taking the bait.
She thumped against the door, giggled, and then cried out. All at once, Victor could hear Stark’s breathing as it turned labored. The first cry of pleasure he made tightened Victor’s balls and made his half-interested dick hard as a rock in one gasp of breath. He closed his eyes, not wanting to see the fool he was fucking – willing it to be Stark.
The abused door was stout after all and stood up to the punishment, but Danelek might not – the little idiot hadn’t prepped himself enough.
“I need to move,” the boy muttered. “Holy shit, what a cock – it’s … starting to hurt…”
Stark was getting close, and Victor refused to miss it. He lifted Danelek off of his dick and tossed him backwards onto the bed, not bothering to watch him whine and bounce. He turned and let his dick hit the door, placing his hand on the wood right over where Stark’s hand was on the other side. The stupid cunt with him was loud, but over her squawks, he melted into listening to Stark’s voice as he came.
Underneath it all, he could hear the man’s heart beating fast. It was a slightly different rhythm than most, but he didn’t need to wonder why. Through it, and through the body, the warm blood sang in veins and arteries.
They separated a moment later and the woman stumbled away, laughing, giddy and plastered. Victor didn’t move and neither did his muse.
Stark’s hand slapped the door and then his forehead leaned against it. Another sound overlaid his unique blood song – mechanical, unchanging – a subtle spinning. It was real … he was real…
Victor’s hips thrust to press his cock against the wood along with his forehead. The curling want in his body stole his breath.
Through the wood, Stark’s heartbeat was thumping faster again. He spoke, directing the words at Victor. “I know you’re there, listening.” He drew in a deep breath, as Victor held his. “Thanks, boys – very inspiring.”
Victor’s hand went to the knob on the door like a moth to flame before he remembered where he was and what he was doing. He stopped and listened as Stark walked away. Growling softly, he finally turned and saw Danelek sitting on the bed looking put out.
“What the hell was that?”
“That was me doin’ my damn job.”
The boy snorted and got onto his hands and knees with his freshly slicked up ass pointed at Victor. He tossed the bottle of lube at a pillow and wiped his fingers on the bedspread.
“Perks first, then the job – I need that cock back, thanks.”
“Yes, sir,” Victor answered with a smirk and shoved in, relishing the cry of pain. They always think they used ‘nuff lube. All o’ me, all at once, hard an’ fast – it’s gonna hurt, less’n they’re used t’ gettin’ fucked by horses. He pulled the boy’s body up against his chest and moved it with him as he got onto the bed on his knees, settling onto his haunches. “Did ya hire anybody else fer this job before ya found me?”
“Why does that matter?”
“Call me jealous – maybe I want this sweet hole all t’ myself.”
“Trust me, it wouldn’t be a competition.” Danelek struggled to get his feet on the mattress in an awkward squat and began to fuck himself on Victor’s aching dick. “Stick me with those claws,” he whispered. “I want to feel them when I come.”
“Do tell.” Victor obliged him, popping and stabbing all ten of them into his abdomen, deep enough to make blood drip – a lot of it.
“Shit! Fucker! Didn’t ask to be stabbed!”
Victor pulled slightly and the punctures became cuts. “Think ya can come now? Gotta admit, I’d be impressed. This is where tha game gets a new twist; so I’ll ask ya again – did ya hire anybody else fer this gig?”
“I’m not going to tell you that.”
“Gonna enjoy takin’ ya apart, asshole, but if ya scream, I’ll open ya up an’ yer guts’ll spill out right in front o’ yer eyes. Capiche?”
He froze in Victor’s hold. “What … is this?”
“This is tha job – Octavius paid me t’ kill ya – seems he didn’t ‘preciate bein’ found out.”
To his credit, the boy didn’t waste time playing dumb. “Whatever he’s paying you, I can double it.”
“Maybe … but first, I’m feelin’ curious – why do ya want Stark dead? I can smell it if ya lie, so … think carefully.”
“He picked me up at another conference last year, in Atlanta. I wanted more, we were perfect for each other, but he wouldn’t see it. He … dumped me after one weekend.”
“Seriously? Wow. Ya know, as reasons yer gonna die go, that’s a really dumb one. Got any dork reminders o’ Stark at home? Bet ya stitched a needlepoint o’ tha date ya met, some fuckin’ swoony thing like that?”
“The date we became lovers. It’s my…” He hesitated, and then began again with all of the broken obsession pain shining in fevered eyes. “He refused to see me … here.”
“Lovers, is it?” The claws yanked a little more. “It’s yer password? What date would that be?”
“You can kill me, or whatever you’re planning to do, but I’m not telling you anything. He needs to die for what he did to me. Fuck you.”
“Excellent idea.” Victor picked up the ball gag the boy had left on a pillow. “Any last words? Like whether ya sent anyone else after Stark? Might let ya live fer that intel.”
“Let me go – I can pay you more and no hard feelings. I won’t bother your boss again, I swear. He has to understand, he has to want Tony dead, too…”
“He ain’t my boss, ya stupid fuck,” Victor whispered into his ear, a purr riding the words. “Sorry t’ bust yer fantasy all t’ hell, but we gotta mutual interest in keepin’ Stark alive. I volunteered myself t’ remove tha threat – it was tha neighborly thing t’ do.” Grinning, Victor forced the ball gag into place and strapped it in tight enough to cut the corners of his mouth. “By tha by, asshole – my rate is one million per hit … but this bit o’ pro bono between businessmen is gonna be a hoot.”
Pulling his claws out, he let the cuts bleed as he began to fuck up into the fool, deep and rough. Any attempts he made to fight were barely noticed. When he got closer to the end, he leaned in to lick the outer edge of Danelek’s ear.
“Fer yer sake, I hope ya really did get a whole weekend fuckin’ Stark; might could make this worth dyin’ fer, huh? Truth is, if tha meat is crazy ‘nuff an’ believes their delusion, it gets harder t’ sniff outta lie.”
At the word ‘meat’, his head twitched to try and stare at Victor’s face. The pupils were blown and he was probably already slipping into shock.
“Ya understand what’s gonna happen t’ ya now, don’t ya? Careful what ya wish fer someone else – it might just happen t’ ya instead. I ain’t gonna come ‘til yer below room temperature, but first … feelin’ a bit peckish – do ya mind?”
The boy tried to scream but only moans came out as the claws cut into him again. Without stopping his thrusts, Victor dug in and began to pull out the rich morsels he wanted to eat. He made the prey watch with clawed fingers holding his chin as his carnassial teeth started to shear up the first organ, but predictably, the game didn’t last long.
Victor hissed as the body convulsed. “Shit, that feels so good on my fuckin’ dick…” When the heart stopped, Victor kept fucking him. “Clean li’l boy toy like ya with a liquid lunch habit, gonna maybe get a chance t’ really enjoy this.”
He thrust until the tract began to quickly cool, the dropping temperature and growing pallor firing a fierce brutal pleasure.
The thrill of sexually desecrating a corpse was a thing the beast within did not share with him, but the hate inside of him for most people made him gasp as he began to come. To keep quiet, he sank his fangs into the neck and shoulder and sucked the chilling blood, swallowing it with greed.
As he thought, only the little limp dick released waste as death claimed it. Victor ignored it as it soaked into the bedclothes and finished his last strokes with a low groan. When he pulled his sated cock from the corpse, he continued to eat parts of it. He thought about the man’s claim of being lovers a year ago. Victor rolled the meat over to its back. He sniffed the slightly acrid scent of the little prick, but either too much time had passed, or too many others had been taken in-between. Growling, he leaned lower and bit the works off at once just in case and swallowed them whole before getting down to the real work of dismembering what was left into neat little portable pieces.
Clean up was a trick and rarely something he bothered with, but he was practiced at that, too. Without getting off of the bed, he used dry parts of the bedclothes to wipe himself down. Once he was sure he wouldn’t get blood elsewhere, he stood and fetched Danelek’s large suitcase. Putting the clothes and other items into dresser drawers, he carefully arranged the pieces of his prey, wrapped them tightly in all of the bedding, and shoved the idiot into the suitcase. He set it on its back on the bathroom floor. After flipping the mattress to hide the few little bloodstains and one yellow bloom, he fetched extra pillows and blankets from the closet and spread them over the bed.
The temptation to enter Stark’s suite was awful, but he managed to resist it. Reclaiming his half full bottle, he nursed the whiskey until it was gone before crashing on the bed. He set the alarm on his phone so he could grab a shower before the porter arrived, and tried to sleep, but all he could think about was slipping through the connecting door. With a huff, he got up, turned the alarm off, and went into the bathroom.
A scalding shower followed by a hot soak was just what he needed, even if he had to hang his feet over the edge of the tub. Reaching out to the suitcase nearby, he gave it a friendly pat. “I had a good time, Danelek – hope ya did, too.”
~ ~ ~
By the time the porter arrived at five in the morning, Victor was dressed and ready to go with his VIP lanyard hanging in plain view over his coat. He had closed the connecting door to hide the device on Stark’s door, and arranged some of the pillows to look like a sleeping inventor. With a smirk, he whispered to the porter to take care and not wake his boyfriend.
He had the suitcase, the cell signal box, and Danelek’s briefcase in a pile for the man to load up onto his cart.
“I’ll be back,” he whispered, “I got an early meetin’ across town an’ then panels here throughout tha day. Gonna let ‘im sleep off last night, check in on ‘im here an’ there – not t’ worry.” His wink only made the man more uncomfortable, which was the point. “Put tha ‘don’t disturb’ sign out, huh? ‘Preciate it.”
After the porter loaded his things into the rental car, Victor tipped him handsomely with Danelek’s cash and drove away with the room’s card key and the keys to the inventor’s house in his coat pocket. He had time to case the joint before delivering his gift to Octavius.
One man’s trash is ‘nother man’s treasure; could be worth it, an’ it’ll gimme somethin’ constructive t’ do ‘til t’night.
~ ~ ~
Victor grinned as Obinata told him the buyer would be along within the hour and to leave the house unlocked. When he put the phone away, he tucked Danelek’s computer tower and laptop under one arm and tore the framed program down from the wall over the desk.
“Atlanta, last year, three day conference – dunno if ya got anythin’ good in here, but it won’t take me long t’ find out.”
He put them in the trunk with the rest and drove off to South Michigan Avenue. At the crossroads at East Monroe Street next to Millennium Park, he pulled into the covered entrance of the parking garage for Octavius’s monster skyscraper. A security detail stopped him immediately. He got out of the car and grinned when they looked spooked but didn’t back off.
“Ollre hires solid muscle, huh? Good. I gotta gift fer yer boss – if he’s got any sense, he’s expectin’ some kinda proof.” They watched him closely as he went to the trunk and pulled out the suitcase. “Best call ‘im before ya monkey with that – odds are, he’s gonna have special instructions fer it.”
One of the younger men asked, “Sir – what name should we give him?”
Victor glanced at the oldest fellow who had kept his distance and never stopped warily watching him. “Betcha he knows my name.” He got back into the rental car, turned it around, and rolled the window down as he passed them. “Give ‘im my regards, gents – an’ my thanks fer showin’ me such a good time.” Chuckling, he drove away.
Arriving at home again, he had the servants bring in his prizes and place them in the master suite.
“Benjamin,” he called, as he looked over the cell signal booster Stark had made and Danelek’s computers.
“Sir?” the eldest of the servants stopped to await orders.
“Tha rental car – I want it cleaned an’ returned t’ tha comp’ny – in ‘nother state, got it? I don’t care which state. Hey – does yer son still wanna drive t’ Boston?”
“Yes, sir, he does.”
“That’ll work. Tell Lenusya I said he can deliver it fer me, expenses paid trip, includin’ a flight home after. I’ll see he’s paid fer it, too – $25 grand.”
“Sir, yes – thank you,” he said, and bowed.
“Ain’t gotta bow no more, remember – yer free o’ that shit an’ I ain’t no royal-obsessed cartel bastard – just yer garden-variety type bastard.”
Victor smirked at the old man. “Relax. Yer gonna find out I’m easy t’ work fer if yer loyal an’ good at yer job, an’ ya are. Now off with ya – bring me a cold beer an’ then disappear, I gotta get ready fer a date.”
As he drank the beer, he stood still and stared at Stark’s invention on his table. His thoughts were scattered and tangled at once.
Gonna be able t’ get close t’night – closer than ever … with access t’ Danelek’s room…
Finishing off the bottle, he set it beside the box and went to select a suit.
No point riskin’ one o’ tha bespoke ones – got no clue what sorta mayhem could go down. Made t’ Measure designer threads it is…
Victor stripped off his Cubs shirt and dropped it on the divan in the dressing room, piling the rest of his clothes and possessions on or around it. He undid the braid as he headed into the shower, frowning at the rampant fantasies that began to fill his head and thicken his cock at the thought of shadowing his muse.
Stark’s not gonna fall int’ my arms – but this ain’t ‘bout what I can get away with, it’s ‘bout keepin’ ‘im alive.
Giving in and working his dick fast and rough, he let the steaming hot water do its work and groaned as he came. Panting, he threw his head back to wet his face and then stared at the fogged glass.
I just wanna be close … closer… Wanna see how he looks at me… Shaking his head, he growled. Ya fuckin’ know how – with disgust, if not fear… His lips pulled back from his teeth in a snarl. He already despises ya, thinks yer trash.
Hollow pride tried to rise in his heart, but he couldn’t muster any emotions beyond anger and self-hatred.
Don’t matter … never would. Just stop any motherfucker from killin’ ‘im … so ya can keep pretendin’ it’d be diff’rent ‘if only’…
Author’s Note: Yes, I want to hug Victor now, even after some of the things he does. He is so mixed up, and so sure he will be hated and rejected, he’d rather lash out to give people a reason to reject him.
Meara Ó Donnamháin is another favorite Original Character of mine, but she was born in this story recently. Her name is pronounced “Meer-a” derived from the Irish word mara, which means “sea”. Her son’s name Braden is pronounced “BRAY-den”, but I could not find a pronunciation of the surname, only that it is one of the Irish Gaelic forms of Donovan. The á is apparently said like “ah” as in the word “Pa”, so my best guess is “O Donnamhahn”. If any readers know Irish Gaelic, I’d be thrilled to have your input. I love throwing characters like this into Victor’s life. He needs to have some people who appreciate him.
It was pure fun to write Victor’s scene opposite Doc Ock. I can so see those two becoming stogie buddies. Also, yikes, I am sooo late in updating my Doc Ock story. Sigh. I need to finish that. Thanks for reading! – AnonGrimm (@MET_Fic)