The Crimson Water

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This chapter was written by the amazing caybailey


It wasn't the questionable lumps floating past, no, nor the irritating scent that burned at his nose. It wasn't even the algae crusted piping they crept through, but the sickly crimson water that swept over his boots with each step that locked his stomach in a vice. No ordinary sewer tunnel produced such iron laden refuse. As they waded through the calf deep waters, he knew they turned red from the waste of the Underground, and not the cretins above.

"Almost there," Tony grunted softly, his shadowed eyes flickering to and fro. He watched the tunnels they besieged and his team as well. They had been quiet enough on the trek in, but as close as they were to that final hatch, no caution could be spared. "Keep it down, lads."

A few more curves and a rusted ladder was all that lay between him and...

Tony shook his head to clear it. What edged him on was limited to the downfall of another soulless consortium. The fire that fuelled his limbs ever onwards had nothing to do with Silent Death.

Savages. How dare they dub her with such an atrocious farce of what she was forced into?

His throat contracted painfully, trapping the building growl that threatened to give him away. The crackling of his knuckles on the grip of his gun liked to taunt him, and the way he pushed aside the real reason he gambled everything the Revolution had worked for.

Keep it together, Tony.

One could reason that the Hunt of the Underground was, in a minuscule way, more ethical than the televised genocide of the impoverished led by the Addington family. The ability to defend yourself without the prospect of legal reprimand was undeniably alluring, yes, but at what cost? You never had the chance to make it out alive in the Underground.

He continued through the ever-reddening sewage, forcing his focus on the mission at hand. If he let his thoughts roam down that path, he would be mad before they even stepped foot in that ancient station.

Whatever it was, he didn't like it. And he sure as hell wasn't going to let it go on any longer. The Revolution lived and breathed the downfall of the Hunt. There was nothing in the contract that mentioned anything about which Hunt they tore apart. Why not them all?

A crackle of electricity hummed down his spine as he unwillingly conjured images of other Hunts. Surely these two were the only ones?

They turned a corner, almost shoulder to shoulder in the thinning tunnels. A quiet hum halted his step and tore him from his reverie, and he threw out an arm to block his partners from moving.

"Everyone, shut up!" Tony narrowed his eyes, slowly raising his gun to the ready. What was it? When the men had all but stopped breathing, he could hear it; the slow and sonorous beat of a siren.

Shit.

Somewhere along the line, despite their best efforts, one of their teams had tripped an alarm.

"Let's move!" Tony's voice was a quiet hiss as he urged his men forward. "We've been found out!" His words were followed by an outraged symphony of profanities.

They had planned for their exposure as they breached the tunnels leading to the station, but not this early. Still in the grimy piping that led to the empty train tracks, precious minutes of stealth had been lost; they might not be able to make it to Abby before...

No.

He swore loudly, abandoning their careful silence. Spurring them onwards, Tony tore through the final tunnel. Bloodied waves crashed up to meet them as they raced through the water, staining their stealth suits and striking their faces. A chorus of disgust rang through the group as they wiped away the sewage.

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