Hush-a-Bye and GoodKnight

Posted: 3rd April 2011 by Jeff Bouley / Deacon Blue in Single-run ("One off") Stories
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The nice thing about living in Erie, Pennsylvania, is that it seems like paradise compared to the city of Marksburgh, Nick thought as he drove carefully through Marksburgh’s main wholesale and industrial district. Then again, so does Hell, probably.

He was driving a tad slower than he needed to and was highly alert to dangers, since Marksburgh was, in addition to being the city to which Erie served as the main suburb, also the carjacking capital of the world. And, it possessed the third-highest murder rate in North America—the two higher-rated cities both being in Mexico. Also, it was the kidnapping capital of the United States. Home of the most corrupt U.S. city politicians and most ethically compromised police force. Worst water quality of any city in the country. Highest rates of obesity, diabetes and cancer of any major U.S. metro area. Plus, to top it all off, the highest recorded per-capita population of transhumans, including the costumed variety, of any U.S. community.

Yeah, a regular city of distinction, Nick thought as he silently thanked God he only had to come into Marksburgh a few times a month for his work. Now if only he could arrange to come here only during the peak of the day, instead of the early evening.

Then he slowed his driving speed markedly, as a man and woman suddenly crossed the street, heedless of any potential traffic. Nick would have slowed down anyway, since even in Markburgh the police tended to frown on running down pedestrians, but he almost came to a stop and put the car into reverse as the man’s head swiveled toward him and he saw the feral intensity even from this distance, enhanced by the zipper-mouthed black leather hood that hid every other part of his face.

Marksburgh was a city of many distinctions, but even in this twisted city, Nick had to admit, the sight of a well-heeled and drop-dead gorgeous woman leading around a leather-clad man in public by a leash stood out. Not to mention the fact that although the male half of the duo was moving on hands and feet like a pet, he moved with unexpected grace for a human in such an unnatural position.

They were traveling with clear purpose toward a storefront nearby that was just a few buildings down the block from where Nick was going.

He decided he was going to have to have to be very late for his appointment, or perhaps miss it entirely.

* * *

The first pair of men they took by surprise—no theatrics. The first set was always the most vigilant, and screwing around could mean death for one of them or the other.

While they remained efficient at the next stage as well, they were a bit more leisurely with the trio that they encountered there, so that the man could slake his violent appetites and the woman could appreciate his work, patting him on his hooded skull when he was done carving up the guards. Then past that group to those who would be least vigilant of all—to the complacent center of it all.

As they continued onward, the woman glanced down at the man she led by a leash, and smiled in a way both loving and cruel. She winked, and he smiled behind the closed zipper that deliciously grazed and scraped his lips and the wonderfully fragrant and stifling leather that lay against his face.

She couldn’t see that smile, but he knew it would also show in his eyes—his devotion to her and his joy in being led by her and told when a bone needed to be broken or a throat slit.

It also made him smile that the residents of Marksburgh—mostly those in the criminal world and police departments, which might as well be considered the same thing some days—knew him only by the name GoodKnight.

But I’m anything but a good boy, he thought, fingering the hilt of one of his many knives as he appreciated the irony. Except when Hush-a-Bye tells me to be one.

* * *

Before they went into the next room, leaving another dead and slashed body in their wake in the hallway outside it, Hush-a-Bye unzipped GoodKnight’s mask to reveal his lips and let him lick at the toe of each of her expensive boots briefly, just to give him a little morale boost—then it was back to business. She left his mouth zip open when he was done though, all the better to let him do his part if necessary. He could make such horrific and eerie guttural and feral noises when necessary.

That might be a very necessary skill as they completed their assault on this particular little criminal empire to either take it out of their pool of competition entirely or to merge its resources into their own operation.

The next area was large, and another one of Tedesco’s men was lurking near the rearmost part of the room, near his boss’ office, and saw them coming. But the range of the power was greater than most suspected until they were exposed to it. Just for theatrical effect, Hush-a-Bye put a finger to her lips in a sultry “shush” gesture, and the man felt his consciousness slip away as his mind was invaded and forced into a narcoleptic mode. He tumbled to the ground in a heap, making less noise than one might think that six feet and 205 pounds of dead weight would make. Still, it was noise, and surprise was important here.

How fortunate then, thought Hush-a-Bye and GoodKnight, that among their arsenal tonight, as always, was also the ability to muffle sounds in a pretty wide radius in addition to rendering foes sleepy or unconscious.

At least that’s what past experience had taught them over the years. This time, though, what was normally a blessing worked against them. They had cut themselves on their own weapon. Under cover of the noise-dampening field and from out of the shadows of one corner, a person had slipped up from behind them. GoodKnight’s head swiveled sharply as he sensed a presence, but too late. A dulled but still-sharp cracking sound and then the vision of Hush-a-Bye tumbling to the ground in his peripheral vision and a spray of blood across his forward vision.

He looked back, helplessly pulled by her plight, and howled as he saw the ruin of her head and the pool of blood forming under it. She was clearly dead, and with the loss of her life he felt a loss of control inside himself. Rage forming and hate seething.

“Well, sometimes you just got to do the job yourself,” the man with the gun said. “Been a long time since I killed someone personally. Feels good.”

GoodKnight turned, still crouched on all fours, then surged upward to stand, the leash dangling from his neck like something dead and forlorn, he thought, now that there was no graceful and firm female hand to hold it. Crimelord John Tedesco retreated a half-step, startled by the sudden movement but also surprised to see just how tall and broad GoodKnight really was. He whistled in appreciation.

“You must be one limber sonofabitch,” Tedesco said, and leveled the pistol at him in warning. “Whoa, now. Don’t do anything we’ll regret. I hear you’re good with up-close wetwork. Good with sharp things. I could use some talent, especially after losing so many boys tonight to the late Hush-a-Bye over there. I pay well, and I don’t mess with a man’s head and make him walk around like a dog. Whaddya say?”

GoodKnight grimaced and showed his teeth, a vision of feral intensity made all the more ominous by the stainless steel teeth of the open zip above and below his lips. “I say I’m tired of listenin’ to ya talk. Ya gettin’ tired of talking?”

John Tedesco reeled a bit, and felt a wave of giddy vertigo. His fingers went loose and slack, and the gun dropped from his fingers. He stumbled then fell on his ass. He felt so sleepy, but was still conscious. He had to…

“Oh God,” Tedesco moaned, as understanding dawned suddenly even in his fogged-clouded brain. “Hush-a-Bye wasn’t the transhuman. You have the powers.”

“Gold star for Johnny-boy,” GoodKnight sneered. “Ya killed her. Do you know how long we’ve been together? Sure, I’ll find a new woman to be Hush-a-Bye and I’ll get enough cosmetic surgery for her that no one will notice it ain’t the same woman, but it will take months of me laying low runnin’ things and stayin’ out of sight before that will be in place. But what’s worse? I can’t really replace her. Gettin’ someone to stand in her place just won’t be the same.”

GoodKnight looked back again at the corpse, and when he turned again to face her killer, Tedesco saw a combination of anguish and anger that chilled him. A hot rivulet of urine turned into a warm and humiliating puddle beneath him. The leather-clad transhuman somehow managed to both weep and snarl as he advanced on the crimelord and sniffed derisively at the scent of piss. He looked at Tedesco like he was a filthy and disobedient little boy.

“Didja hear me, Johnny-boy?” GoodKnight asked. “I can’t replace her. Oh, sure, when I started it all five years ago, I was just lookin’ for some beautiful woman who was either a lifestyle domme or could warm to the role well enough to convince me she was more than just a pro doing an act. But we got to be more than just a couple of folks playing a game to hide that I had the power. We became a unit, fuckshit. She was my mistress. For real.”

“I was her slave,” GoodKnight continued, his voice cracking, and tears trailing down from his eyes and over the zip of the mask to make his lips wet and salty. “Do you know how good that feels to me? To have power but be under the boot of a woman who understands? To not have to be totally in control of my actions? To let go? To have a woman who knows how to lead me and tell me what to do, but also care about me even when she’s cruel? Who makes me be what I need to be? An animal or a bootlicker or whatever. Who understands. I loved her, ya fuck! Ya killed her!”

GoodKnight shook his head slowly, and wiped a hand across the leather mask, smearing tears and snot across it.

“I can find someone to fill the role, but I can’t make that new woman love me back as a mistress. I’ll find an actress for a part but it won’t really be a Hush-a-Bye anymore. You’ve ruined it.”

“Look,” Tedesco said, struggling to make his words firm and confident under the powerful waves of drowsiness that threatened to overwhelm him—along with the terror gnawing at him in the presence of a man whose despair was mingled with a desire for vengeance. “We could be partners. I know…I know lots of people. I can help you find the right…woman. Better woman…to replace her. Partners—you and me. Your resources and mine. We’ll be unstoppable. We’ll…we’ll rule…Marksburgh.”

Only one word in the crimelord’s plea moved GoodKnight’s emotions.

“Replace?” he asked quietly, but with a thick layer of menace in his tone. “Is that what you said? Replace! She can’t be replaced. I’ll be lucky if I find someone to almost measure up. So, ya like my skill in wetwork, Johnny-boy? Cool. Well, let me show ya how good I am with my knives. I have all night to give ya some taste of how much I hurt. I’m gonna write a eulogy for Hush-a-Bye all over ya.”

Tedesco watched helplessly, his body too sluggish and his brain too drowsy for him to even stand. He could barely try to crawl away. A blade that looked like something for skinning and gutting fish emerged from a sheath, gleaming and surgically sharp. GoodKnight’s eyes were shining with tears and a hungry, feral anger. Teeth white and sharp, framed by a black mask and bright zipper teeth. Dim lighting and a psychological gloom all around to make GoodKnight even more prominent as he loomed over him.

John Tedesco let out a little yelp like a frightened child, and pissed himself again.

For a few hours, the work was painful and slow-going for GoodKnight, as he needed to muffle Tedesco’s screams and pleas with his sound-dampening powers and keep him just drowsy enough to not be a threat, while also trying to concentrate on maximizing he pain without killing the man. It distracted him and gave him a headache. The next few hours after that, though, Tedesco really couldn’t manage more than a whimper or moan, and GoodKnight could really get into things once he didn’t have to use his powers while making use of his more physical skills. Then he really did begin to feel some pleasure as various blades split flesh gently and dug in deep to cause exquisite agony. Artistic cuts to violate and desecrate unspoiled skin.

In the end, though, feeling any pleasure as Hush-a-Bye’s corpse cooled nearby made him feel guilty, and by the time dawn finally broke over Marksburgh, he stopped playing games and ended Tedesco’s life.

He left the ruin of the man’s body as a public message.

He took Hush-a-Bye’s body with him to keep their secret.

  1. TheNextMartha says:

    I would totally read this if I read fiction.

  2. Deacon Blue says:

    *chuckle* Well, you commented at least, which is more than I usually get here at this blog (while my erotica blog under another name routinely gets a few comments and several hundred hits a day…pity I have to keep that separate from my real identity)