|dyingforakiss (dyingforakiss) wrote in snark_n_bark,|
@ 2007-10-14 18:28:00
|Entry tags:||barty, complete, zach|
I believed it would justify the means - it had a hold over me
Characters: Barty and Zach
Summary: Barty goes after the man who made him a failure
Barty had wandered the past few days in a haze of pain and fear. He had not gone to his inherited house, fearful that Bella was actually watching him and would find out about the houses and vault. He had found himself some ragged robes out the back of a charity shop that had thought the clothing too worn to sell. His wounds had stopped bleeding, though he sometimes tore them open again when he tried to move to quickly. The pain in those waxed and waned, but the agony in his shoulder was constant and a large part psychological. He had tried to remove Bella's initials, but nothing that he had tried had worked. He had even tried, in a moment of more extreme madness, cutting it off, but had been forced to give up trying when the pain had made him pass out.
BLB - the letters stood out darkly on his shoulder as a symbol of his status. He belonged to Bella, and he knew that it wouldn't be long before she came to reclaim her property. Terror of that moment had driven him to go after the Healer who had ruined all his plans. If he killed Healer Smith, he would at least have something to show when Bella turned up. Hopefully if he demonstrated that he wasn't completely useless she wouldn't want to punish him again.
He had returned to the park where he had once watched Smith walk his dog. He crouched in the shadows behind a bench and tried to calm his breathing and the violent shuddering that wracked his body. The robes were wrapped about him as tightly as he could manage, but he was still cold, and his warming charms didn't seem to make any difference. He teeth chattered in his head as he waited.
An hour after he had begun his vigil, his patience was rewarded. Smith came into the park, the dog Barty had seen last time bounding ahead of him. Barty glared at the man. It was his fault that Bella had punished him. It was his fault that he had been forced to see Bella for what she really was. If it hadn't been for Smith, Barty could still be happy serving Bella, blissfully unaware of her insanity in clinging to a Dark Lord who was long dead and defeated. Summoning all of this hatred, trying with all his might to mean it, Barty tried to hex the man, but as ever, the vicious curse travelled no further than his lips. Why?! he screamed mentally. Why won't you let me kill him! The question of course remained unanswered by the ghostly image of Rilind Hedera in Barty's memory.
Mad with his fear and frustration, Barty tried another spell and was this time triumphant. The dog slowed and then slumped onto it's side, suddenly and deeply asleep. While Smith bent over his pet in concern, Barty rushed forward from the shadows.
Zach dropped to his knees at nearly the same time Snitch hit the ground, brow furrowed in concern over her sudden collapse. "Snitch? What--"
His voice broke off when he sensed something, or someone, moving behind him. He whipped around just in time to catch a smaller man who was, for some reason, launching himself towards him. "What the...?" With barely a breath left for words, Zach just managed to push him off enough to get his bearings. His hand was halfway to the wand in his jacket when he stilled it; if this man was a Muggle (and how many wizards did he know that went for physical fighting?) he wasn't about to bring the Ministry down on his head unless he had just cause for using magic.
Barty was infuriated when Smith managed to shove him away, especially as it made him aware of their difference in size. Smith was a lot taller than he was. However, he was too enraged for that to give him pause and knew that he had to take the Healer down before he could get his wand out. He ran at him again, aiming his elbow at the Healer's stomach. With Smith doubled over, their heights wouldn't matter so much.
It had been years since he'd had to resort to this sort of fighting, not since the glory days of primary school when pick-up rugby matches went sour. Even so, he was amazed how quickly the abilities came back to him. He bent low at the knees when the small man came at him again, balling his hand into a fist and landing it in the other man's stomach before he could do more than run into him.
The air left Barty's lungs in a grunt of pain as Smith's fist connected with his stomach. He reached out blindly and managed to grab a handful of Smith's hair. He clung on tenaciously, even as he tried to get his breath and strength back. Changing tack he kicked out at Smith's legs. His toe connected with a shin, hard. Yanking down on Smith's head he brought up his knee, but was shocked when hands suddenly grabbed at his legs, pulling them out from beneath him and he was tackled to the ground.
Pain radiated through him from his head, but he fought on, determined. He hadn't survived near-death from the Virus to be taken down by some plonk of a Muggle attacker. But was he though? What about Snitch? The thought was gone in a flash of renewed pain when the man's foot connected with his shin. Fed up, Zach swept the man's legs and brought him down, pinning him with his own body.
"Right then," he panted, struggling to get his breath back, "want to tell me why you're trying to beat me senseless? Or shall I just call the police and let them sort it out?"
Barty tried to wriggle himself free, but had to suck in his breath when he felt one of his wound reopen. The sharp sting was followed by the oozing warmth of his blood trickling over his torso. He struggled against and then had to give up. Sweat was standing out on his forehead and he was shaking again. He didn't have any more energy and he slumped back, distantly aware that he had been foolish to go after the man physically.
"Do what you want," he spat, though with little of the venom he had wanted to inject into the comment. Instead he sounded deathly tired.
The condition of the man beneath him finally made it past the adrenaline of the fight and the hurts of his own body. Before his eyes, his attacker was starting to tremble and grey out. His brow furrowed, he'd been a fair fighter in his day, but he'd come nowhere close to doing that sort of damage to the other man. Carefully, and still on guard, he eased off of him to kneel at his side. Blood?
When he saw traces of red against the man's shirt, Zach knew something else was very, very wrong here. He'd used no magic at all and he knew he hadn't hit hard enough to split the skin open. After a furtive look around to see if anyone was near them, Zach slid his wand from his jacket pocket. Deftly, he opened the man's shirt and nearly gasped aloud at the wounds there, wounds he hadn't caused but were now opened due to their struggle. "Hell on Earth, man, what were you doing attacking me with injuries like this? You should be in hospital or lying in a bed somewhere recovering at the very least."
Without another word, he set about healing the wounds before him, clearing off the traces of blood.
Barty realised that he had blanked out for a while, because when he opened his eyes again Smith was healing his wounds. A small, unhappy chuckled escaped his lips and he closed his eyes again. It was no wonder Smith had cured the virus his pets had carried if the man would even try to help his enemies. He was obviously a natural Healer. He lay still and quiet as Smith worked. He was confused and still in pain, but the anger had gone. Bella was right, he was a failure. However, this time he couldn't help feeling glad of it.
His mind whirled as he worked, wondering what (who?) had done this to the man. The cuts were cleaned and healed, some of them having taken on a nasty air Zach wasn't comfortable with. He was just about to start looking for others when he noticed something very odd on the man's shoulder. Gently, he peeled away the shirt to uncover the wound. "Mother of God," he whispered under his breath. He touched the skin around the area. That was carved in to his skin. He might not know the identity of the man he was healing, but if the letters were initials (and he strongly suspected they were), he had a starting point to find his enemy.
He cleaned that wound as best he could, applying a stronger healing charm to it, and then looked into the face of his attacker, realising rather belatedly that the man was awake and aware. "Who are you? Why did you come after me?"
Barty studied Smith's face for a long moment. The man was younger than he had previously realised, or perhaps his altered perception was allowing him to finally see the truth about everyone, not just Bella. "You made me a failure," he whispered in response. He groaned as he tried sitting up. Smith didn't move to restrain him and again Barty stared at the young man. "Thank you," he said, an almost questioning lilt to the words as he tried them on for size. "Thank you for healing me. S- Sorry..." He drew his wand and cast the same spell he had on the dog.
Zach's mouth was half open to ask for more information when he belatedly noticed the raised wand. He had a moment to think reckon there's a reason I'm not an Auror before his mind began to grey out. He struggled to fight whatever had been cast by the man who moments before was trying his best to beat him bloody. His arms were heavy and useless, no magic would be coming to his aid now. All he could think about was Debi, about living through the virus only to be taken down like this, and of the very real possibility that the man would finish what his fists couldn't once whatever this spell was had taken effect. As the world spun away from him he managed to speak. "Please...no...wife...". And then he knew no more.
Barty caught Smith's weight as the man fell unconscious, though he was nearly squashed by it. He crawled free and drew his ragged clothing about himself. He got to his feet and then stood for a few moments more, looking down at Smith's body and wondering if he should kill him anyway. He shifted his weight slightly and then shook his head. The Healer had helped him even though he had been trying to do him harm, it was better to let Smith go and forget the whole affair. He touched his hand to his healed but marked shoulder and shuddered. He didn't want to go back to Bella. He wouldn't go back to her. So resolved he walked away, further into the park. He paused once more to send reviving light back at Smith and escaped into the shadows.
Consciousness came back to him slowly and he eased himself to sitting, rubbing at his temple. All at once the reason he was on the ground came back to him and he looked around, one hand reaching for his wand. It was for nothing, though, as the man was no where to be found. Stowing his wand, he moved over to where Snitch was lying. He revived her with a quick flick of his wand and seconds later was being treated to a face full of Labrador kisses.
After a few moments, he stood and clipped her leash back on to walk home, his mind still racing over everything that had happened and what it could all mean.