South Africa - Johannesburg
Marthinus rubbed his bald head, running his fingers through the thinning crown of white still present. He ignored the soft smell of leather and the brightness of the sun outside his car window. Johannesburg was lush and green and the sun setting as it neared six in the evening. Cars were whizzing by and his driver was speaking to him with a thick local accent, but Marthinus T. Steyn ignored all this.
He had been away from Nachton several months now and it pained him. Here he was, in his home country and closer to the Huntington family that had relocated after Simon's "death" so many centuries ago. Simon, the patriarch. Leaning back Marthinus rested his head on the leather padding of his seat. He missed the normal nights, the cool breeze and reassuring silence it always brought. Working on a daylight schedule made him tense, after all these years.
We're here sir, the driver said to him. As the car slowed to a stop, he did not wait for his driver to open his door. His restlessness was making him impatient. The driver gave him a startled look from across the roof of the car. Marthinus waved him off and entered the tall glass building.
His driver trailed behind him twenty feet, lugging his briefcase and other leather things on a rolling cart. Marthinus walked quickly to the lobby and stopped in the center of a carpeted room, decorated with tribal masks and aborigine artifacts, no doubt to inspire a high level of snobbery to which it suceeded in doing. Marthinus was there to meet someone, not a friend but someone connected. Someone powerful. Someone with medical interests in Duibne...but who wasn't interested in the medicinal power house created by the wretched, but now dead Ellis Duban?
A young lady approached him wearing eggshell blue. Her shoes made soft scuffing noises across the carpet.
Marthinus looked at her first through the side of his eyes, then directly at her.
'He will see you now.'
'Indeed', Marthinus replied quietly.
Well, I do recall a few things.
The gentleman I was meeting was Iov Hammerthynn. His corporation, Stafford Enterprises, had been interested in investing some of its vast fortune into synthesizing animal blood, but with the murmurs of Hillman's corporation wanting to take Duibne in a hostile takeover, the deal had fallen through. So not only was I on a personal mission, securing the lives of the Huntington's outside Nachton, I was here to maintain Duibne's hold on the research industry.
Make more money, in other words.
'I can't help you, Mr. Steyn.'
That was the first thing Mr. Hammerthynn said to me, but not the first thing I noticed. Iov Hammerthynn stands at an enormous six foot six and was missing one eye, his left. He made no apologies about his missing eye which was uncovered and ghastly looking. A clean scar cut diagonally down from the outside inward. It looked soft and it healed well - it was just a sight to behold. The fact that he didn't hide it is what made it ghastly, I suppose.
He rose from behind his desk and plainly said, 'I can't help you, Mr. Steyn.' Then something on his desk caught his attention. His computer monitor looked mounted under his desk so nothing obscured his view. I wondered how his depth perception was.
I answered him. 'Mr. Hammerthynn, I haven't proposed anything that would require your help.'
Hammerthynn looked back down at his desk, tapped it with a finger, then moved away to an open door to the side.
'Mr. Hammerthynn, I'm here,' then he held a finger up as he walked into the other room. To say I wasn't insulted was an understatement. I am a man known in many circles, politically and financially. I am, or was, the CEO of a major research and testing facility. I've given speeches around the world, held together a family operation and forced a stake, so to speak, into the industry making Duibne a powerhouse in...
The room shook just then. I turned towards the noise which was coming from behind me, from the door I had entered. Then I heard the distinct noise of gunfire. That loud popping nose but in succession. Someone was using an automatic weapon. Just then the door burst open and four men came running in with guns.
'MR. HAMMERTHYNN,' I yelled and turned back towards the opened door. That asshole had left!!! Running towards it, I came to a screeching halt as Iov Hammerthynn came walking out with one very large shotgun and what sounded like an semi-automatic pistol. I hit the floor as he started to shoot in my direction.
I covered my head and looked back at the door, watching as Hammerthynn killed the four men. Looking back up at Hammerthynn, he threw a bag at me and said, 'Could you hold that please?' Then slung the shot gun back over his shoulder and grabbed me with one hand, pulling me to my feet.
'I said I couldn't help you, Mr. Steyn, but feel free to give me your proposal as we get the hell out of here.'
And that's about it.
Iov Hammerthynn had grabbed him by the arm of his three thousand dollar suit and roughly pulled him out of his office and down a long corridor through a door he had not seen on his way in. That would probably be because the door wasn't really a door, but a large opening created by the explosion Marthinus had heard not moments earlier. There were troops coming in, some sort of Army. Suddenly he felt his arm released and as he looked over at Iov, he noticed the larger man walking steadily, certainly in a hurry, but not a frenzied type half run that Marthinus was doing. Hammerthynn was loading a shot gun with shells, not once flinching at the sound of gunfire around them.
Marthinus almost ran into him as they came to a sudden stop. They were at a T corridor with an elevator bank. Instinctively, Marthinus reached out and touched the call button, just as the whiffs of bullets grazed his head and pierced the wall beside him. Again he felt the hard hands of Hammerthynn and was shoved into a corner as he watched the large man give his shotgun a one handed pump and pulled another weapon into his opposite hand. Hammerthynn stood in front of Marthinus as he started to firing both weapons down the corridor. He crouched behind the tall thick legs, trying to find a safe and covered spot when Hammerthynn took a step back, almost crushing him.
The bullets came faster now, piercing the wall and causing puffs of plaster into the air when suddenly the elevator doors opened. Lunging for the opening, Hammerthynn turned and yelled out.
Marthinus felt three bullets tear into his back and it propelled him forward, towards the back of the large elevator. Hammerthynn grabbed another weapon and let out a barrage of automatic bullet spray as he stepped into the elevator car and the doors closed. What Marthinus saw next was...disturbing.
What happened next was unexpected and most definitely not planned but sometimes, some decisions had to be made in haste. Speaking of making haste...
He was standing in the open and as much as he would've like to avoid it, a spray of bullets hit him directly in the chest, knocking him back...and that's what he felt it. For Hammer, it always started with the tingle along what would be his hackles. With his adrenaline pumping furiously away in his body, he felt the transformation kicked into hyper drive and he felt his back bow and his fangs springing forward. A normal transformation was painful, despite how long you had been gifted, but when pushed, you can complete the change in just under 30 seconds, but the pain was immense and it only furthered the transformation even faster.
Of all things, in the loudness of the fire fight and explosions, the soft chime of the elevator was loud in his ears and he immediately felt the man behind him move. Hammer could not stop Marthinus from moving into the direct line of fire, so all he could do was back into the elevator and let his weapons loose. With a long, painful howl, Hammer felt his legs begin to bend in the unexplicable way and it took everything to halt the process for a moment.
Dropping his sub he covered Marthinus from the return fire and waited for the damn doors to slide close. As the elevator began to move, he looked back down at Marthinus who was lying motionless. Turning him over he noticed his hands had begun to change, his fingernails sprouting claws and his reddish, yet greying (much to his dislike) fur sprouting on his hands. Hammer hesitated.
He had before him, the CEO of the leading research facility on the eastern seaboard of the United States. Part of him laughed inside at this thought. Such an advantage, he thought. Then as he looked at the slumped over body of a man who held such a high position. The political ramifications would make other ambitious werewolves drool, but that wasn't Hammer's interest. Steyn was first and foremost a diplomat - and he was dying.
Turning the man over, Hammer let Steyn see him for what he really was. Lethagic eyes opened slowly and then widened. He was probably a sight to behold, half transformed and dripping saliva onto his chest. Hammer looked down and saw the mingling of the two, starting that inevitable process. Often he had wondered at the virus's ability to transform a human being into something so primal, so potentially reckless and deadly, just to stay alive. And here it was, passing itself onto another potential host, forcing Hammerthynn into quite the pickle.
With considerable control, Hammer pulled back away from that glorious bright light at the end of the tunnel. Reigning in virus's hold on him, he phased painfully back to closer to human. It was a long elevator ride up to the top floor, where the helicopter was waiting for them to rendevous at the meeting point. Hammer took this short moment to explain the rest of Marthinus T. Steyn's life.
Then he began to change, the almost wolf like features began to recede back to whatever dark place they were from and then Hammerthynn spoke. Spoke of things he had never heard even whispered in the darkness that is the vampire nation. Never once had he or anyone spoke of a hidden race so far their opposite. A mortal race, but physcially strong hunters who were reclaiming what was rightful their share of the world.
As this man spoke, Marthinus felt his wounds bleeding him out slowly but surely. His now decimated heart was destroyed and his rejuvenated 2nd chance at life wasted. Hammerthynn then told him of what was happening inside him as they slowly rode to the 100th floor - he was given a choice. They could try to save him or he would leave him here to die.
Reaching into his shirt pocket, a wave of relief but a blanket of despair spread over him as his cold fingers touched the silver pen containing his third choice. Pulling it out, he showed it to Hammerthynn and whispered as his fingers clicked off the cover, revealing an injection pen and inside this pen was a fluid that very few could afford but many would kill and have died for. He handed the pen to Hammerthynn and he saw the look of recognition cross his face.
'I'm not ready to die yet, Mr. Hammerthynn,' he said.
Hammer looked up at the elevator panel and saw they were nearing the 90th floor. Clicking the pen, he then watched its needle pop out, ready and willing. He looked at it for a moment, then plunged into Steyn's heart, starting a chain reaction inside him that made the werewolf transformation look like cake.
The elevator doors opened to more gunfire, this time crossing in front of them instead directly at them. There were troops on the helo pad preventing the helicopter's landing. Pulling Marthinus and the back pack he asked him to hold out, he moved them behind the elevator's walls to shelter them and then stood tall. This time, he would not halt the inevitable. This time, he would not stop until he had tasted blood.
Forcing the transformation again, Hammerthynn's clothes ripped and he tore them away with his now sharpened claws. Again his legs bent, bringing him to his feet as his back bowed out and his naked body began to grow the reddish fur that women of their pack seemed to find sexy. His underbelly though, graying slightly, tightened and narrowed, his face elongated, and the deep raging howl finally let loose. It pierced the air causing the men to stop and look back in terror. With graceful speed, Hammerthynn sprang forward and pounced on the men.
Savage biting ensued as he tore out the throats of the dozen or so men on the roof top, clearing the helicopter pad in just under a minute. The transport lowered onto the pad and men jumped out, lowering their guns and standing quietly, waiting. Turning, Hammerthynn ran back and showed the men Steyn and they brought a stretcher, loading him safely into the helicopter. With bloodied fur, he waited for the men to all climb on and he followed them inside. The click clack of his nails against the steel floor echoed loudly as they took off and flew towards their hidden hanger used for transporting. He growled at the men who had knocked Steyn's stretcher and then settled next to it, in a protective position. Even he had his limits on pain.
((ooc - Hammer and Steyn out))