Tuesday night, not too far from Thanksgiving. Hardly the busiest time for any diner and it's looking rather empty at Sadie's. A young couple has just finished their meal and are heading out into the cold with a wave to Joshua as they leave. And now the place really is empty. The clear skies outside the only thing that is preventing snow from falling tonight - which may be the reason there is a lack of customers too.
After a few minutes there is finally another customer. A woman - late twenties - bundled up in a long coat and shivering as she enters. A quick glance around before heading to the counter.
The older, inked man behind the counter raises a hand to wave to the couple as they go. "Have a good one! See you again soon." He brushes his fingers over his beard before he turns to take their plates and turn, passing it back through the little window to the kitchen so they can be washed. Joshua rolls his shoulder and glances over as the bundled up woman approaches the counter.
He flashes a warm smile and makes his way over, picking up a menu and setting it in front of a stool. "Hey there! Come on in. Get comfy. Coffee?"
The woman studies him for a moment before nodding in agreement. "Coffee." She eyes off the window to the kitchen before attempting a smile. "Quiet night. Don't you get bored on evenings like this?" She grabs a bowl of peanuts and starts cracking them open with two fingers of one hand. The woman doesn't eat any...just simply puts the nuts back in the bowl.
Joshua nods and turns, snagging the pot of coffee and pouring a mug for the woman. "Eh. I find a lot of solace in my head. I'm fine in the quiet." He smiles and turns to take another abandoned plate and push it back through the window into the kitchen. The place is less-bar and more diner. A restaurant.
"Still" she shrugs, "Must be a long night." A sly smile for the older man before there is the sound of smashing dishes in the kitchen. "Don't be alarmed" she says softly. "There is no need for anyone else to become involved. Is there?"
He blinks at the sound and his back straightens. He glances back over his shoulder through the window into the kitchen. The man suddenly carries himself like one akin to violence. One who can hold his own. "What's going on?"
"You are a concern" the woman replies as she slides off her stool and opens her coat to reveal a sword that she slowly draws. "We can do this the easy way or the hard way. Your staff can die or only you. Our Master requires only your silence. A silence best achieved by removing your head."
The man furrows his brow as his hand lingers under the counter near the gun hidden beneath the register. He pulls his hand away, though. He eyes the woman, as if looking for an opening to lay into her with his years of experience in hand-to-hand combat. "Whoever your master is does not need to do this. It's okay. I forgive you for this. Please...lower your weapon and walk away. Nobody needs to be hurt here.."
"No, no one needs to be hurt. But you need to die." The woman walks slowly towards where she can round the counter and be on the same side as Joshua. A little flick of her blade as she does so. "And my Master is not doing it. I will be." A wry, cold smile for her potential victim. "Your beliefs are disturbing. Bring on the Resurrection? No, not until my Master has had his fun first."
Joshua is good in a fight. He may be old, but he is a bad ass, honestly. He mutters a prayer to the one God under his breath, and cracks the knuckles in his right hand. "This world does not belong to the monsters," he offers softly. The old man then lunges in, sticking to practiced boxing techniques. He ducks to the side and moves, hoping the fact that she is behind the counter with him sacrifices some of her sword-maneuvering room.
The woman is no rookie herself. As Joshua comes at her she slips out of the way and slashes her blade down his thigh. The sword carving open his trousers and flesh. Another flick of her wrist and his blood spatters on the diner floor. "I was expecting more from a God Botherer" she mocks.
Joshua takes a swing. He is rusty, however. His fist goes wide and he grits his teeth as her blade cuts through his jeans. He takes a step back and grunts. "God is with me, woman. You'll see." With that he lunges in again, attempting to catch her across the chin.
The woman steps back from the wild blow and calmly slices Joshua once more. This time opening a wound across his chest. An evil grin as she admires the damage. "Are you sure God is with you? Perhaps He is busy washing his beard?"
Joshua winces as the blade cuts again, and he takes a few steps back. "God is always with us." He reaches down, pulling his baseball bat from under the counter. This is a dangerous town, after all. Dripping blood but apparently undeterred, he steps in with a swing!
The woman stumbles back from the blow of the bat. Her own stroke lost in the desire to get away. She clutches at her ribs and glares at Joshua. "You were lucky, old man" she hisses. "But now you shall die."
"Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me..." Josh closes the distance as she tries to put space between them, and the man brings the bat around for another swing.
The woman expected it this time, managing to avoid the blow and slice him with her sword once more. "Don't waste your breath on prayers" she spits, "Waste it on asking for mercy." She lets out a cold laugh. "Your God has abandoned you...as he always does."
"The Lord grants me mercy, and will welcome me into His arms when this is done. But I'll take you with me." His breath is a bit ragged now from pain and blood loss, but...he does not let up.
Another blow from the baseball bat and there is the sound of the woman's rib cracking but still she manages to cut him; concentrating a little more than she had to do so before. "Take pleasure in knowing that you fall to the will of the Antichrist. His world will arise thanks to your sacrifice."
"You're deluded. Your master is just another monster. I feel pity for you," he grunts as he spits out a bit of blood. "Convinced to do so many terrible things...by such a false thing." He swings again, barely on his feet...but refusing to surrender.
"My Master is here! Where is yours?" A grunt from the woman as she is smashed again by the bat but then she slices his chest open in return. The blood spilling to the ground as Joshua collapses. Standing over him she spits on his body. "Your refusal to die quietly means that everyone in that kitchen will be joining you. I hope your God will forgive you that."
He lies there for a moment in his spreading pool of blood. He stares up at her as she stands over her, and he frowns softly, blood on his lips, when she spits down at him. "In Him we have redemption through his blood..." He lunges up and pulls the pistol from where it is taped and sprawls back again, spattering blood. "... the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God's grace..."
The pistol falls from his numb fingers, his eyes staring lifelessly at the ceiling.
When the police arrive they will find Joshua's dead body nailed to the counter in a mockery of the crucifixion. There is evidence that someone else...one of the attackers...died as well (all that blood loss) but there is no sign of their body. In the kitchen is another dead body - one of the staff. The cash registers were unharmed and nothing appeared to be stolen. Words in Latin were scrawled on the wall in Joshua's blood. A cult murder? Or just murder for murder's sake?
The Hunters of Fallcoast know better. The L'Enfant Diabolique have been at work.