Lx. smartest in the room

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His eyes are a forest, once lush under sunlight, but now only filled with dead flora. The canopies Thirteen had constructed effectively blocked out all emotion and perhaps even the capacity to feel. I stared into these eyes full of emptiness to try to read them, but they don't budge.

The handcuffs around his wrists seem like they didn't do anything to chain him, and if he wanted, he could break them loose. Harsh, fluorescent lights set an ambiance of tension in the bleak white room. I glance at the watch on my wrist: 9:00AM.

The last time I sat here before the one sided mirror, I was being interrogated. Now, I was interrogating someone else. But I didn't feel any less nervous. If anything, I felt more nervous. The murderer leaned back in his chair with an intrigued look on his face as I entered. They are entirely fixated by me, taking me in, analyzing me.

Last night, I'd read up on the OGA tactics of interrogation. Then, I proceeded to throw those tips out the window. Following any set guideline was antiquated when dealing with someone who's done interrogations from a young age. Ian stays silent, unmoving, except a small tug appearing on his lips.

His hair is damp; droplets fall from his hair. Bruises appear on his face as well. He still says nothing. What did the CIA do to him? Sleep deprivation? Waterboarding?

I draw in a deep breath. "Let's begin with the basics. For the record, what is your name?" I state. To my surprise, my tone is unwavering. On the inside I wanted to straight up murder him.

He purses his lips. "Ian."

"Last name?"


The small smile hanging from his cut lips confirmed that he was lying about his last name. My nails dig into my palms. 9:05. "When did you start the Thorned Kings?"

Thirteen smirks. "Come on, Darling. I know you can do better than that. Rule one of interrogating someone. Don't ask stupid questions—do you really think I'm going to tell you?"

The tone he took with me was abrasively arrogant. After all, he was the one with the handcuffs on, yet he was giving me advice. The irony was pungent.

I bite the inside of my cheek. Clearly, there was no point in being civil. "You should consider telling me, Thirteen. Whatever they've done to you so far will continue to become something much worse."

"My name is Ian, and I'm only here to get close to my Queen."

I scoff. "Right. Carpe diem."

His green eyes flicker to meet mine. My blood starts to run cold. He looks at me with deadly scrutiny, and the predatory presence makes me shiver.

"You're nervous."

"I promise you, I'm not."

My eyes narrow in his direction. Just being in the same ten by eight room as him made bile come up my throat. He was capable nothing but being sadistic. Thirteen was obviously not going to give me any useful information. But maybe, if we just imprisoned him for the time being, we would be able to find his weaknesses. As long as he was behind bars or dead dead, the public would be safer.

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