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The Devil Tainted Us: Chapter 16


“Did you get what you came to Vailburg for?” Julius asks, sitting beside me at the deck area. I was returning back to the Magdalene, to the place where a man like me belongs. Only a few minutes left until I reach my destination.

I nod my answer, looking at the wooden flooring.

“It seems like it wasn’t a success.”

I shrug. “I don’t care.”

He snickers under his breath. “If you didn’t care then you wouldn’t have gone so far for a girl you barely know to hurt her brother-in-law so severely.”

I have no regrets about that. He deserved to be punished.

I left scars and cuts almost everywhere on his body as a reminder to never be near Agatha or me. I bet he is still in deep agony after I cut off his balls. He will survive but he will be living a painful and miserable life, regretting his actions every second of his passing days.

After I left his residence, I went to the hospital where Agatha was previously admitted. I soon found the doctor who was handling her case and didn’t hesitate to punish him the same way. Only difference was that Tristen is still alive and the doctor’s dead body must be somewhere in the dumpster.

I returned back to the motel and stayed a few more hours to calm down my nerves. I knew the word about what I did to Tristen would spread soon and I’m sure either the guard or one of the maids gossiped about it after I left. Probably half of Vailburg knows by now but I don’t give a shit.

I stopped caring about what that town thought of me years ago.

“I will send you a message through the radio about the new packages if needed.” I stand up and head to the room to get my bag with Julius following behind me.

“You know you can’t ignore this. I have never seen you behave so possessive and act like a maniac for a girl.”

“I didn’t do it for her…I,” I hesitate to answer.

“You did do it for her otherwise what motive would you have for torturing one of the richest businessmen in Vailburg.”

“Why do you want to know so badly about it? Since when have you turned into a pussy who gossips?” I retort back with anger rushing through my nerves.

“It’s not about gossip. It’s about the consequences, Eryx.”

I clench my jaw as I pick up the bag and put it over my shoulder before leaving the room, wishing for the ship to reach the shore as soon as possible. I have no interest in talking about this topic.

But Julius doesn’t let it go as he turns me around by my shoulder, enraging me furthermore.

“You know well, Geryon will soon know what you did and he won’t forgive you for it after he puts the pieces together. You can’t hide this from him forever.”

“Neither me nor you are going to tell him. And I’m pretty sure Tristen wouldn’t dare to open his mouth, especially after I cut it.”

He shakes his head, running a hand through his hair, looking frustrated and worried about me. “But when he finds out, you know what he will do.”

I know that well. Geryon wouldn’t think twice before twisting that knife of guilt and control he holds over me. But I’m aware in that scenario, Agatha will be gutted like me.

“Is all of this risk worth taking for a girl who will leave you when the time comes?” he asks a question that has been at the deepest graves of my thoughts but I never let it come alive, knowing well I will be dreaded by the answer.

“You might have feelings for her-”

“I don’t have anything for her-”

“Lie to yourself and others all you want, Eryx, but you can’t lie to me,” he cuts off my words, “-I saw it through your actions these few days…I saw how desperate you were to know the answers.”

I gulp, feeling my heart racing as I remember the moments when I was searching for every possible way to know about Agatha. I came here to help her heal but after the things I discovered, healing her didn’t seem to be my only motive anymore.

“You are trying your best to ignore your feelings for her and I don’t blame you for it because you have other priorities. She will be there for a limited time and will leave you. She has seen your true side; she witnessed the devil and I can tell she won’t be ready to embrace that part of you.”

I remain quiet, feeling the ship starting to slow down as we get closer to the shore.

“You are my only friend I care about. Don’t walk into a deep forest where the beauty may lure you but darkness will summon you into destruction.”

“She doesn’t mean anything to me. She is my patient and maybe knowing the man who hurt her will help her get cured faster and leave as soon as possible,” I spit out my words with irritation crawling in my heart.

The ship finally stops at the shore and Julius helps by drawing the ladder down. I step down and nod at him over my shoulder as a farewell before I start heading towards the Magdalene.

A strange gutted feeling grows within me with every step I take. Even now my mind races with thoughts about Agatha. Various scenarios of how she will react after she knows what I have done to Tristen, flashes in front of my eyes.

I can’t stop thinking about what Julius said as well. I did all of these for Agatha, to help her be free from her nightmares, but why do I care?

Why does it matter to me if a man had the audacity to touch her?


I reach the gateway of the Magdalene where some of the women are already working, cleaning the porch side as usual with Agnes watching over them. I don’t spare her a glance as I walk ahead, not in the mood to deal with anyone at the moment. As I enter, I find Geryon coming from behind the altar area, dressed in his priest attire as always, with the sleeves rolled up. Few of the women are sitting at the benches, chanting prayers softly. The mere atmosphere feels cold and dark.

“Welcome back, Eryx,” he greets me, stalking towards me.

I simply nod as my eyes look around for the girl I went to Vailburg for.

“How was your trip?” he asks.

“Good. Everything was alright here?”

“Yes. And the medicines have been stocked until next month.”

I open my mouth to let him know more about the packages when I hear a faint screaming sound, making me frown with a sudden worry consuming me.

I look around. “What was that?’ I ask.

He looks over his shoulder with a shrug as the screaming continues. “Just letting one of our patients know what happens here when rules are broken.”

I don’t know whom he is referring to but a part of me has a hunch about it that I feel my blood running cold like ice.


“Agatha.” He shakes his head looking unaffected by his actions. “She tried to escape on the ship-”

“Where is she?” I interrupt him, dropping my bag.

“The cellar but-”

I don’t listen to another word before I dash to the cellar which is behind the altar. I burst open the door, taking the nearest hanging candelabra with me as I take two steps at a time downstairs. My nerves are twitching and firing at a vigorous speed.

My body prepares me to fight the most dangerous battle with anyone who would try to come between me and Agatha. I follow the cries and whimpers.

What I see makes me halt instantly.

Agatha sitting on the ground with her white dress covered with dirt and the shoulder part torn. Her hair is a mess curtaining her face. Both her hands are hanging from the wall behind her with heavy cuffs around her wrist. There are a few cuts on her legs which are soon going to be eaten off by the giant, dark rat approaching her.

Without thinking twice, I kick away the rat hearing it squeal before running away to another corner. I kneel beside Agatha, placing the candelabra beside us as I tuck back her hair.

“Eryx,” she whispers, letting her choked voice tug at my heart.

Her face is covered with bruises like she was punched and slapped several times. The dark circles also proves she didn’t have a wink of sleep. Her lips are chapped as she gulps like she is in desperate need of water.

Rage is the only emotion I’m able to convey at the moment. I quickly look around, finding the keys hanging at the opposite wall. I retrieve it and instantly unlock the cuffs, witnessing the dark, red bruises on her wrists.

The moment she is free, she moves into my arms, hugging me tightly like she doesn’t want to be parted away. I move my arms underneath her and pick her up, heading out of the cellar.

“I got you. It’s okay,” I whisper to her.

Geryon is already waiting where I left him with a fuming look. But I don’t pay him an ounce of attention as I head to my chamber.

Her body trembles as she starts to sob against my shoulder, her hands tightly tangling around my neck, digging into my skin.

I shut the door behind me, placing her on my bed. But when I try to move back, she tightens her grasp. Trying to control my racing heart, I shift and let her rest on my lap with my back against the headboard. She lets her emotions be poured without any hesitation while I caress her hair.

“Y-you came back…” she rasps.

“I did.” That makes her cry harder that even my body is starting to shake with hers.

“I was so scared…I-I…I thought you would never come back.”

“Hush. It’s okay now. I’m here,” I mutter against her temple, lightly caressing her back.

“I tried to escape,” she starts, keeping her face pressed against my neck like she can’t look me in the eye to confess. But I remain quiet, listening to her truth.

“I knew about the ship and tried to hide in it, so that I would leave along with it back to Vailburg,” she swallows, “but Geryon caught me and said I would face the consequences for my actions. H-he put me inside that cellar and cuffed me all this time. Visiting me every now and then to hit me or slap me, punishing me again and again…” her words fade away but I can clearly understand whatever he did to her, traumatized her furthermore.

“It’s okay. Nothing will happen to you. I’ve got you,” I whisper as she continues to shed tears. We stay like that for a long time, before her body starts to soften under my touch. I look down and notice she has fallen asleep from exhaustion of the past few days.

If I knew she was going through this nightmare, I would have never left her. I have seen other patients suffering like this by Geryon whenever they attempted to escape and, in those times, I have remained silent. I didn’t protest once whenever I heard their cries echoing through the Magdalene all day and night long.

But not this time. Not for Agatha.

I slowly pull away from her and get the first aid box from my drawer, to tend to her cuts at first. She winces and hisses lightly in her sleep but doesn’t wake up. I put bandages over her wounds and cover her body with a soft blanket before I stalk out of my room to face Geryon.

He is at the prayer hall, sitting at the front bench with his right elbow resting on the seat with his feet resting on the opposite knee. The room is empty, making me assume he must have ordered everyone to leave.

His eyes are poisoned with anger and frustration before he gets up when I stand in front of him.

“She didn’t deserve that,” I mutter with an irate filled tone.

He smirks in a humorless manner. “Just because you are fucking her doesn’t mean the rules don’t apply to her.”

Without thinking I land a punch across his cheek, making him stumble down the bench.

But he recovers quickly and hits me in the same manner making my jaws ache instantly. He aims to strike again but I dodge it with my arm before holding his hand and twisting it. Using my other hand, I punch right on his nose with all my strength.

“Fuck!” he grunts and I take the opportunity to hit his forehead with mine watching him fall on the ground.

But he makes a quick choice and kicks my leg, losing my balance and gets on top of me, raining hits after hits across my face until I feel the metallic taste of the blood on my tongue.

He is stronger than me in every aspect possible but I’m more determinant than he ever will be.

My nose is starting to bleed and I can feel the bruise on my lips too. He raises his arm for a hit but I hold his fist when it’s close to touching my face. Pulling him down by his collar I strike him with my head twice in a row. He falls on his side and I take the opportunity fist his hair and smash his face against the wooden bench continuously until I see blood dripping on the floor.

But I don’t stop when he grunts in agony.

I don’t stop when he lets out a loud cry, letting me know he is reaching his limit.

My thoughts are blurred with images of how vulnerable and helpless I found Agatha at the cellar…how she sobbed in utter horror and weakness that she found shelter of protection in the arms of her captor.

I keep hitting his head against the bench again and again like a mad man, relishing in the sight of his wounds and pain.

“She.” Thud.

“Didn’t.” Thud.

“Deserve.” Thud.

“It.” Thud.

I crane his head back, demanding him to meet my gaze and know the promise my words hold. “Touch her again or try to even think of hurting her and I will kill you.”


I let him go watching his body slump on the floor like a dead body, even though he isn’t dead yet. I spit out the blood from my mouth onto the floor, suppressing my urges to hurt him until he took his last breath here. I start to walk to my chamber when I hear Geryon chuckling in a sinister way like the pain doesn’t affect him at all.

He is still lying on the floor giving me a blood covered smile.

“Since when did you start to have feelings, Eryx?” he grunts out his words.

“I have known you for so many years and some things about you may be a mystery to me, but I do know you don’t have a heart to feel anything…not even love.”

I remain quiet, listening to him state things I already know.

“If you think she will change her mind and fall in love with you then you are delusional, brother.”

He calls me by the title that I wish I never had, especially by him.

“Once she knows the truth and sees the devil within you, she won’t hesitate to run away and leave you forever. You and I both know men like us don’t deserve to be near the shadow of love and care.”

We never earned it in the first place.

He tries to get up but fails so he leans up on his elbows, facing his body sideways to me with blood dripping down his chin.

“We both are bound to be together, even after our deaths. You and I built this place after the darkness we were raised in and swore to accept this life. So, don’t let a fucking girl change you when there is no hope for it.”

“She isn’t changing me-”

“I don’t believe anything anymore from you about her. She is controlling you with her pussy but that’s what she will be. A pussy you will fuck and forget when the time comes for her to leave.”

I clench my jaw with my hands fisting tightly, itching to hurt him again.

“And even if she does stay, when she knows what you did to her, she won’t see you the same way ever again. She will loathe you till her last breath. Stop fantasizing about a life which will never belong to you.”

I point my index finger at him with a threatening look. “Stay the fuck away from her. Touch her and you die.”

I continue to walk while his words echo through the wall with a dark chuckle. “You are brave, Eryx, but not so brave to kill your brother.”


My eyes flutter slowly and the first thing that greets me is pain. I wince as I try to move, hearing the distant sound of running water. I look around, finding myself in Eryx’s chamber, lying on his soft, vast bed.

Tiredness still consumes me from not sleeping for four straight nights. I sit up slowly, finding bandages wrapped around my cuts that Geryon left.

I can feel my swollen face from the bruises but I still have this fear within me of Geryon coming back and resuming his torture.

Just then Eryx comes out of the bathroom, wearing gray pants and black T-shirt, showing off his muscular arms which are inked with tattoos that I have the urge to trace. There is a monotonous look on his face, but his eyes tell a different story that he is trying to hide. There are a few light bruises on his face like he has been hit but I refrain from asking him at the moment.

He heads towards me before sitting in front of me and starts to inspect my bruises.

“How are you feeling now?” he asks, lightly touching the marks around my cheeks and eyes.

“Painful. Tired.”

He nods. “You need bed rest for a few days or perhaps weeks. Your wounds will start to heal soon and I will give you some extra dose to help you sleep better.”

I simply nod as he moves to my arms, retrieving the bandages from the side table and wrapping it around the cuts more.

“This should help keep your wounds dry while taking a bath,” he stands up, offering me his hand, “time for a bath.”

I accept his hand and walk with him inside the bathroom, where a bathtub is already filled with foamy water that smells like lavender with a bar of soap and loofah resting on a small stool beside it.

I face him, feeling this deep ache in my heart…something that I felt when he was gone.

“Do you need help?” he asks, not meeting my eyes.

Do the bruises affect him?

I nod my response and he finally meets my gaze, holding the hem of my dress and lifting it up. I stand there naked with my underwear on while his eyes never leave my face. Even when he kneels down to take it off, he doesn’t look anywhere but at me. He takes both my hands and guides me into the bathtub as I feel the warm water soothing my skin with the sweet fragrance wafting around my nose.

“Ah,” I sigh with comfort, closing my eyes as I relish on the feeling. The water slushes up reaching up to my breasts as I stretch my legs forward with my back against the tub.

Eryx leans behind my head, gathering my hair and tying into a bun. He takes my hand carefully and dips the loofah into the water before running it along my arm, avoiding the bandages before skating it up my shoulders and neckline.

Every muscle within my body started to relax from his motions. This is the very first time I’m seeing him acting so…caring and gentle. He doesn’t seem to be my captor who was cold and distant in our first meeting.

But I can still feel a hesitance in his demeanor as if he is trying to hide something. He works on my other arm before taking my leg and washing them from my feet to my knees.

“Sit up,” he mutters before moving behind me and cleans my back with slow, circular motions.

“Do my bruises bother you?” I ask, feeling him suddenly stop before he looks at me.

“You are looking at me in a different way…”

“What way?” he asks.

“There is hesitance and ignorance in your look.”

He shakes his head before resuming to wash my back. “It’s not you. Don’t bother about it.”

“But I want to know. Why won’t you look at me like you did before…before this?”

He remains quiet and grabs the nearest hand shower, guiding me to stand up and washes off the soap from my skin, making sure the bandages are dry.

After I’m cleaned off, he grabs a towel and helps me out of the bathtub and pats me dry gently.

“You didn’t answer my question,” I mutter when he moves to my neck.

“I don’t owe you any explanation. So, stop asking questions that you won’t get answers to. It’s useless,” he dismisses the subject and wraps the towel around me, taking me back to the bedroom.

He pulls out a dark brown T-shirt and sweatpants, passing it to me. “I don’t have extra clothes and I couldn’t find your clothes in the suitcase. So, you can use mine. I will get something for you to eat.”

He heads to the door when I call out his name, halting his steps.

“Eryx…” He looks over his shoulder at me with a frown.

“Are you going to leave again?”

He pauses, as if understanding the meaning behind my question. He knows my fear of being tortured by Geryon again is still lurking in the back of my head.

“He won’t come anywhere near you.”

“Do you promise?” I whisper.

“You can trust me with my truth like I trust yours.”

My heart races faster from his words only but before I can talk further about it, he leaves the room, closing the door behind him.

My truth.

What does he know about my truth? How…?

I look at the clothes he left me and pick them up as I drop the towel, changing into the clothes. I can smell his musky and woodsy fragrance in his clothes, feeling his presence close to me even though he isn’t in the room.

A closure I was imagining about the whole time I was at that cellar. I didn’t know when it was day or night time. But whenever Geryon came in to hurt me and verbally abuse me I knew it was time to go through a nightmare. I have been hurt before but those times at the cellar would be unforgettable. I tried to find every way possible to escape from there but with my hands being cuffed so high and the whole time, with no food or water functioning my body…I could barely think it through. Geryon tried to break me physically and mentally but Eryx came again for my rescue. And deep down I was wishing he would come soon to get me out of this nightmare.

Biting my lip, I look around his room, not knowing what to do at the moment. I sit on the bed, touching the soft blankets. My gaze shifts to the window side where it’s raining with a crow landing at the other side being all wet. Its head moves continuously in all directions as it shakes its whole body to get rid of the excess water before lightly tapping on the glass.

Another crow joins in and follows the other’s motion. But both are tapping their beaks against the glass which sounds more vigorous. I’m so invested in those two crows that when I look out the other window, I don’t notice there are four more crows doing the same. I frown in confusion.

The tapping starts to get louder and louder with more crows coming at the window. When there is no more room then, the others hit their beaks against it while flying.

My heart starts to pump against my chest at full speed with a sudden fear and anxiety tightening around my throat. My eyes turn wide in horror when the entire window is covered with crows, the tapping cawing sound got louder and louder that I feel it piercing through my ear drums.

The room turns dark with the crows blocking the light from outside. I limp run to the door but before I can even get to the handle, I hear the loud shattering sound of the window with all the crows bursting inside the room and attacking me with their beaks and claws.

“Ah! No!” I scream, trying to save myself from the strikes but I can’t see anywhere because of their wings.

“No! Ah! Stop it!” I yell at the top of my lungs.

I feel the claws digging into my skin and on my bandaged wounds too with blood oozing out. It is agony all over again as I writhe and try to defend myself. My eyes start to blur with tears. But panic set my nerves on fire, making it hard for me to breathe and think.

With agony spiraling through my body, my legs give away as I kneel and fall on my side and cover my ears with my hands, praying to be saved. But none of it helps.

Terror is shadowing upon me just like the crows and I scream in pain and fright, shutting my eyes closed, feeling tears streaming down my cheeks along with my body shaking like I’m hyperventilating.

“Agatha,” I hear someone calling me but it feels like a faint voice as if it’s muffled.

“Agatha, what happened? Agatha, are you okay?” It’s still muffled but it’s a feminine voice. My body trembles more with the faint voice starting to become clear.

“Agatha, wake up.” Concern and tension painting her voice.

The cawing starts to lower down but I still keep my palms pressed tightly against my ears.

“Agatha, please open your eyes. Please. Oh God,” she rasps, as I feel soft hands tugging my hands away.

“Please Agatha.”

I gather up every ounce of courage I have and slowly open my eyes, expecting the crows to attack me again, but it’s the absolute opposite. There are no crows or broken shards of glass anywhere.

I start to sit up slowly and look down for blood and cuts but there are none except for the ones that Eryx bandaged.

“Agatha.” I follow the voice and see Beth sitting beside me with utter shock and concern. “What just happened?”

I look around frantically, unable to understand what just happened. “I…I don’t know what…”

“Come on.” She helps me stand up and takes me to the bed before carrying a plate of food and placing it beside me. She sits down and puts her hand on mine.

“Father Eryx sent me to give you some food and then I heard you screaming from outside. You were shaking and screaming to stop being on the floor.”

I pull my knees close to my face as I shake my head in confusion and stress. “I really don’t know what happened. I was changing my clothes and then thought to rest. Then I see this crow,” I point at the window, “it was tapping on the window and before I knew it there were hundreds of crows bursting inside the room.”

She frowns. “But the window is shut and nothing seems to be broken. Are you sure you weren’t dreaming?”

“None of it felt like a dream. The crows were clawing my skin and hurting…I felt the pain and it was too real. I’m not lying, I promise. I have been seeing these things and I don’t know myself if those are dreams or reality.,” I shake my head feeling more tears emerging, “I can’t stop thinking about seeing my sister…and blood everywhere.”

My voice starts to get choked up.

“I don’t know what is happening anymore-”

“Hey, it’s okay.” Beth moves closer before engulfing me in a hug, letting my rest my chin on her with my arms around her for comfort that I’m desperately wishing for.

“Shh. It’s going to be okay. Take a deep breath. Come on with me.”

She and I inhale and exhale deeply, as I close my eyes to let my nerves relax a bit. I feel her hand lightly brushing my hair as we both continue breathing.

“All will be okay. You have been through a lot because of Geryon. It must be your mind still recovering…give yourself some time. Everything will be alright soon,” she whispers, tightening her hold on me which I don’t mind for once.

Several moments pass by as we remain in the same position but I eventually pull back, letting Beth cup my face and tucking back my hair.

“I’m here…I’m here for you.”

I feel overwhelmed with many emotions that I feel everything being out of control. I feel trapped with every passing day that I sense myself being back in those dark times of my life that Tristen tainted.

Every time I try to escape this darkness, it crawls back to my life, hiding in the shadows only to emerge to ruin me. It feels like an inescapable fate that I’m stuck with for the rest of my life.

I look at Beth who is looking at me with a softening gaze, lightly caressing my cheeks. I notice her eyes staring at my lips with an expression I haven’t seen before.

Care. Concern. Fondness.

She wipes away my tears before slowly leaning forward. I’m still in the haze of what happened moments ago, unable to think of what to do next. But before I can contemplate, I feel Beth’s lips touching mine in a soft kiss. Both of us close our eyes, getting lost in the moment.

My lips remain still but her’s continue their motion with tenderness and gentleness like she truly cares about me. She lightly nibbles my bottom lip before sucking it and using her tongue to trace my lips. I hear her moan under her breath, feeling her hands lower down to my chest.

But before things can go further ahead, I instantly move back, finally feeling the surprise dawning at me. My brows furrow together in puzzlement as I touch my lips while looking at Beth who kissed me like I matter to her.

“What…why did you do that?” I whisper.

She bites her lip, looking down at her lap. “I know I shouldn’t have done it. It’s wrong and I should be mortified because this is the illness I was blamed for.”

I shake my head, holding her hand. “It is not an illness, Beth.”

She lifts her head, meeting my eyes. “It just felt right in the moment for me.”

“Having feelings for someone can never be an illness, especially when those emotions are true and pure coming from the depths of your soul. Whether it’s a girl or a boy, it doesn’t matter. But…”

“But you didn’t feel this right,” she mutters.

“I don’t know why you kissed me. But I do know I’m not worth having feelings for. I’m not the one for you Beth. There is a person out there, who will cherish and love you for who you are. You may think you have lost yourself. But deep down your true self is still alive, you just have to let it emerge back before it’s too late.”

She swallows. “It’s just since the day I saw you…you have been different from others. I instantly felt something and gave it all to avoid it…to suppress it because I knew it’s wrong. And it triggered my anxiety, making me remember how I was brought here. But after seeing what you were experiencing a few minutes ago, I sensed that you would understand what I have been through.”

“One way or another we have all been through darkness and pain. We are just the unfortunate souls who are bearing with it even though we did nothing to deserve it.”

I lean forward, cupping her face, offering her a small smile. “But I want you to know, this doesn’t change my perspective about you. It never did in the first place.”

She gives a sad smile with her eyes shimmering with tears. “I’m sorry that I let fear control me so much that I let you drown in suffering more than before. But now I promise you, I will help you.”

“What do you mean?”

“I will help you escape. I don’t know how we will do that but I will be there for you.”

I feel warmth and hope soothing my heart as I can’t help myself but hug her tightly. “Thank you…thank you so much.”

“We both will escape from here.”

“Thank you.”

We will escape. We will be free.

But deep down I can’t also stop thinking about Eryx who is turning out to be something more than just my captor…someone who is becoming my savior.


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