In an effort not to clog DevCo with too much shameless self-plugging, though, I'm going to limit myself to one scene/chapter-thing per week. I should mention, too, that when in book-form, these scene-chapters will appear in a different order and heavily edited. Please enjoy.
Darren hunkered down deeper into the grass. “I don't like this,” he whispered. “I feel like she's watching me.”
“She's only got one eye,” Craven said. He laughed. “And she's not watching anything, unless she's spotted another butterfly.” He laughed again, a sarcastic, humourless chuckle.
“What's wrong with her?”
Craven was mildly amused. “It isn't obvious? You know, she used to be beautiful, once.”
“Honestly?” Darren was almost afraid to look away. He didn't want to see what would be there when he looked back. “What happened to her?”
Craven Lorne glanced at the creature. She walked through the grass, regardless of the long, wet blades that slapped against her bare legs and brushed the seam of her torn dress – regardless of just about everything. “I don't know,” he said. “No one does.” He paused for a second too long. “Whatever it was, she undoubtedly deserved it.”
Darren watched her hold a hand out to a leaf and let a copiously-legged insect crawl onto her pale arm, her glowing, green cyborg eye trained on it. “You sure, boss? I'm not saying you're wrong, but...” He watched as the insect scuttled up her arm and over her cracked, porcelain face. “It's just...” He crouched lower. He couldn't imagine anyone deserving to end up like that.
Craven put a firm hand on his back. “Trust me, Darren.”
Darren had no choice.
The wind blew through purple landscape and the grass sparkled gold in response.
Darren found his voice. “So, do we...?” he left his question there, hoping that Craven hadn't heard him.
“No,” Craven said, to his attendant's audible relief. “Not today. We will catch her, make no mistake. And when we do, every bit, every last spec of her Dust will be drained. But it's not enough, not nearly.”
Darren still couldn't pull his eyes away from the creature and he was growing uneasy as a result. He had been led to believe that she had more Dust than ten normal figments, more than enough for any purpose he could conceive of—but he wasn't about to question Craven Lorne.
Craven waved his hand dismissively, low enough not to draw attention. “I don't mean that,” he said. “She has plenty of Dust. The rumours go that it's white Dust, too, though we can't be sure.” He put his hand up to stop Darren from getting too excited about the colour. “I meant that it's not enough to kill her. We need to chase her first, wear her down. Confuse her, worry her, taunt her, torture her—” Craven stopped and Darren could almost believe he saw a smile play on his boss's black lips, before he recalled himself. “It's getting dark. We'll see her again, Darren, don't you worry.”
Darren watched her dance, lurchingly into the darkness. He worried. He worried a lot.