2012-10-14: Holding Onto Faith



Summary: Nicholas meets the Handler for a second time.

Date: October 14, 2012

Log Title: Holding Onto Faith

Rating: R

Small Church - Interrogation Room

The very first thing anyone will seen entering this room is that someone spraypainted on the wall 'DEATH TO MUTIES' and then someone else tried to clean it off, but it's clung to the concrete. This place looks like what it was meant to be. A torture chamber. Wooden chairs are bolted to the floor with leather restraint straps visible. Tables holding various implements are on rollers to be moved around at will, some looking like they came out of the medieval period. A sickly sanitary smell does little to cover the scent of blood, sweat and more. There are stains on the floor… some recent, some old, all with a coppery brown color to them…

Broken limbs. Scars. Beatings. Nicholas had been pulled out of his cell, shackles unlocked, manacles gone, and brought to the more typical interrogation room instead of the Handler's pristine lab downstairs. The Handler stands, speaking aside to some Purifiers, before he nods to a chair, which has been added. "Put him there," he drawls. They drag Nicholas over, none too gently, slapping him down onto his chair. "Hello, Nicholas. It's been some time."

Nicholas knew the three day break from being in this room was to good to be true seeing that now with the Handler in front of him, it was a calm before a storm. Instead of slouching in the chair, defeated, Nicholas does his best to hold himself up the best he can. He looks right into the Handler's face and nods. "If I knew we were seeing each other again, I would have cleaned up."

Beginning to strap Nick into the chair, the Handler smiles pleasantly at Nicholas's words. "I would have, too," he admits. "This is the knife I used to put a smile on your friend's face," He claims, lifting up a rather long blade, too thin to be called a machete, too thick to be called an oversized scalpel. "But I don't do the same treatment twice." It's definitely vibranium, however, and he turns it and rams it into Nicholas's shoulder, hard, to pin him down in the chair further.

Nicholas tries not to wince as he's strapped into the chair but the pressure on some of the injuries causes the involuntary reaction. He jerks his hand subconsciously as he mentions the 'smile' to cover his face, but only pulls against the straps. "At least you're not acting like the good cop this…Aaaaah!" He cries out mid sentence as the dull side of the blade presses into his shoulder.

"I'm -helping-. You can move things with your mind, which tires you out. You have a -condition-, Nicholas, and I'm here to cure you. Today, we'll be trying electrotherapy." He smiles once more, a friendly smile over at Nicholas that never reaches his sunglasses-covered eyes. And then the Handler rises, beginning to circle the chair. "You've been shocked before, I imagine. Not quite like these. We're not going to use the lethal voltage. Don't worry. Roll on three." And then a Purifier pulls a lever, and suddenly Nick feels like his veins are on fire.

"Obviously I've been shocked before, by you guys." Nicholas says trying to hide the fear that's building inside of him, he knows what this guy is capable of and it terrifies him. His voice has become horse from all the torture over the last several weeks. Nick just feels he can't let that fear show though as much as he masks his face, his eyes betray him. "Yeah I have a condition all right, it's that you guys have a hard on to make my life…AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!" The pain tears through him, forcing the scream from his throat.

"You see, the knife works as a conductor, Nicholas," explains the Handler, the pain the most sensitive at Nicholas's shoulder. He pulls on some rubber gloves, snapping them at the wrist, otherwise expressionless. He then moves to grab another blade, a very similar one to what he used before, jamming it into the heavy flesh of Nick's shoulder. "And what this does is it multiplies the voltage." (FIX'D)

The break from the electricity as the Handler puts on his gloves allows Nicholas to catch his breath, panting hard. "What's this…supposed…*breath* supposed to..do?" He asks trying to put mocking tone to his voice. "I'm happy with…my…powers." He has just enough time to take a deep breath before the blades meet both his shoulders, causing a loud scream of pain to echo off the walls as the shock causes his body to shake and shudder uncontrollably and painfully.

"You said we have a hard on for this. You think I'm getting sexual pleasure out of this, Nicholas?" The Handler shakes his head, moving over to the lever again. "The youth of today," he laments. "Did you know that I did my research? There was a nonlethal voltage that a man called the Shocker used when he robbed banks. Of course, he had a lethal setting, as well, but we're not interested in killing you." He pulls the lever hard. "Not yet."

"I'm thinking you get some sort of pleasure out of this." Nicholas says through gritted teeth. Something about this guy, The Handler, he feels like he as to prove that he's not getting to him. Maybe it's because he's afraid of him the most. "What is it you're trying to prove by doing all this?" Then the shock rips through his body causing yet another scream accompanied by the involuntary spasms.

"Do I enjoy re-educating you?" wonders the Hander. "Yes. It isn't some macabre pleasure. It isn't anything like that," he murmurs. He pulls the knife from Nicholas's shoulder. "I'm making you understand that if it wasn't for you being able to…" He pulls the lever back up, stopping the shock, approaching the mutant, grabbing his lower face, just under his mouth. "Move things with your mind…" He lifts it, tipping his head back, "People wouldn't have to be dying. Teenage boys wouldn't be taken from their homes. Being hurt. This isn't our fault. It's -yours-."

Nicholas's body still shakes slightly from the shocks, he's breathing hard and sweating. He looks at the Handler, eyes scanning the larger man's face, trying not to wince as his jaw is in his grasp. "You act like I asked for this, I didn't. But I'll admit, I don't hate my powers. You're an idiot, you fail to realize it's not the power that makes someone horrible, it's the person. I'm a better person than you'll ever be." He then attempts to spit at the Handler.

The spit hits the Handler in the bridge of the nose, and he lets his fingers lift to slide it off himself, before his hand curls into a fist and he launches it into Nicholas's stomach, hard. "Only God should have the power to be everywhere at once, to move things without touching them. Only Samson should have the strength to destroy entire structures. Only the natural laws should control gravity." Another strike to the stomach. "You… abominations choose to use your powers. God will not be mocked!"

The wind is knocked out of Nicholas from the punch and he tries to double over but the straps prevent him from doing so as he gasps for air. His eyes water from the pain and he tries not to cry. Eventually he's able to breath again and takes in large breaths for a while. His head hangs down and he doesn't look up at the The Handler, he just says. "This is how God made me."

"You think your abilities come from God?" asks the Handler, and he grabs onto the seat of Nicholas's chair, swiveling him towards a screen. "I want to show you something." Flipping it on, it shows Connor curled up in the cell, babbling madly as Quenton and Warlock try to help him, as several Purifiers limp out of the cell, groaning, masks broken in several places. "This is a live feed. Do you think God made your friend like that? Can you imagine how much he is -suffering- right now?" He flips onto another channel, the date showing many days back. 'You know, I can just crush that gun you're holding into a pile of scrap metal, so how are you going to use that gun to kill him if I destroy it first. And once I crush that into a metal ball, I'll crush your throat!' Nicholas's own voice comes. "Do you think God would give you the power to kill a man so easily, men, who he made in his image?" He flips a few more dates back, no, many dates back, until Nicholas sees an alleyway, where Quenton kills his father,

knocking him into a car as Heather and Shane look on in shock. "Do you think God would create such a monster?"

Nicholas isn't sure what frightens him more, watching Quenton kill his father or the fact that they have it on camera which shows they've been watching him, watching them. He lowers his head and knows he can't back down from his answer. "Yes." His voice is weak at first, but then he looks back up at the man. "Yes." Nick's answer is said with more conviction this time. "For the same reason I know that he made sadistic fucks like you. You're the reason Connor is suffering. If you didn't kill my parents, I wouldn't be so angry and in the case of Quenton…just like you were born with this twisted desire to educate us through pain and fear, he was given a gift that's hard to control. So if you believe God created a monster such as yourself then yes, he would." Even after he says all that he flinches ever so slightly in anticipation of what might be next.

"Connor was suffering before we took away his medication. Besides, what did you want us to do? Keep him medicated until we killed him? He's too late to teach, you see, and too old." The Handler's hand grabs onto Nicholas's hair, pulling it back hard. "As for you, we wouldn't kill your parents if it wasn't for you drawing so much attention to yourself." He bends, to whisper in Nick's ear, "we wouldn't have been able to make you appear as a monster if you weren't already one." And then he draws the chair a little closer to the screen. "And in the case of Quenton," he echoes. "I have a desire to -educate- you through pain and fear. He has the desire to -kill- and destroy. You think I'm the monster? Look what you're all capable of. You're not even human."

A hiss escapes Nick as his hair is pulled and then the whisper in his ear causes him to cringe and as he's drawn closer to the screen. "I guess I'm going to fail your lesson, I know what's true and I know you're just full of it." He says quietly. "If you consider yourself human, and us not, then I'd rather not be human."

"You'd rather be what?" wonders the Handler. "A monster? A freak? Do you think that even if the Purifiers are ever beaten, we'd be the last group that hates you?" he asks of Nicholas. "We wouldn't. You will always be hated. You will always be different. But… I invite you to wear the collar forever. I invite you to come with me, back to Africa, where we can go away from the pain and torture and you can live a life free of powers and fear and pain."

"I'd rather be myself." Nicholas answers as the exhaustion is starting to show in his voice. "I'd rather be who I am right now than anyone else. I'm not going anywhere with you. I'm not going to be your collared boy toy. I'd rather you kill me than live a life like that."

"Then let me be clear when I tell you this, Nicholas Gerhardt," the Handler says, as he rises to his full height, looming over the seated mutant. "You… are -going- to die," he says coldly. "We're going to -kill- you. Do you understand?"

Nicholas tries to straighten himself up as much as he can in his predicament. "Yes." That's about all he can say, he's scared, beyond scared. He doesn't want to die and the thought terrifies him. "I'll die knowing that I'm not this monster you want the world to think and maybe someday, something good will come out of it for mutants."

"Oh, you're the monster, you'll find that out before we kill you. Good night, Mister Gerhardt," the Handler rumbles, and with that his fist goes back and he strikes Nicholas in the back of the skull, as hard as he could. "I'm done here," he tells a Purifier aside, pulling off the gloves and peering to the door. "Tell the Reverend I'll make plans before I leave. Long live Humanity."

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