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Kaiser Martens

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"That which once was."

The air was humid, moist, and there were a few icicles on the room's ceiling, barely showing up through cracks in the shelter's concrete. There was a man sitting on a partially frozen ancient chair, writing down on a dirty piece of paper which seemed to be some kind of inventory. He had very, very long hair and a very long beard as well. His clothing, very warm, made his body seemed larger and bigger than it actually was - such were the precautions that he had needed to take in such temperatures.

He puts the pencil down and sighs what seems to be, due to the freezing temperature, some steam out. Then he rises and walks in his heavy boots towards a large metal door. There is a rifle on his back and an axe at his side, seeming to be - like all of this forsaken place - quite aged and worn out. The opening mechanism is rendered nearly useless by the ice, he must use a beam for a lever in order to open it, but once outside, closing it seems to require less strength. He covers his face with a mask to prevent frostbite, and it has built-in sunglasses too, for on this day the sun was shining brightly, making the forest around him seem like a sea of silver encrusted with wooden columns.

"Time to hunt. Hunting time." He says to himself as he starts walking, taking his time and looking around almost in a paranoid fashion. It does not take him long to reach what seems to be a mostly abandoned half-iced route, when he spots a deer in the distance...with feline stealth, he ducks and pulls out his rifle, he takes aim with his iron sights, seeming to be extremely deft at the use of this weapon. He had found his dinner...and...then, both himself and the deer spot some vehicles in the distance. The animal runs away, and the Hunter gets out of the way and leaps behind a rock: The Enemies were coming. He takes out his binoculars to watch from afar, and whispers, [i]"Demos..."[/i]

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The frigid air of winter crept into the car, regardless of the heat being turned on inside it. Chunks of frost and ice still clung to the car, testifying proof that it had been sitting for quite some time before being used for its current purpose. The windshield was as clear as it could be for the hasty departure its driver had made; small pieces of frost were still visible here and there, but most importantly the occupant could see the road ahead of him. There was another occupant of the vehicle residing within the backseat - a small, motionless form of a little girl, strapped into a booster seat. "Don't worry darling, we'll be home soon," said the man as he adjusted his rear view mirror, staring at his sleeping daughter affectionately.

The two of them had just narrowly escaped detection by police in the city. Benjamin had kidnapped his daughter from his ex-wife after being denied custody of her long ago. It wasn't that Jessi was a bad mother...it was just the fact that he had been denied contact with his daughter for the longest time; this was the only way that he could ever see her and be apart of her life. Maybe one day she'd look back at this, and be glad he did this. He didn't intend to keep her forever, or anything. He just wanted to spend some time with his daughter before she got too old to care or remember him.

The frosty winter night, his lack of attention for the road, his entrapment within his thoughts, and the drunk drivers ahead of him all culminated into a single breaking point: before Benjamin knew what was happening, his car slammed into the front of another one, he was thrown from the driver seat, through the hole where the windshield had been, and into the chilly night air. He was hurled into the air, skidding to a painful halt on the ice-encrusted ground. Parts of his vision began to fade in and out, but he pulled himself up momentarily in a burst of adrenaline and shock, reaching his arms out towards the two now-flaming wrecks. "ALICE!"

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Several men rose from the wreckage nearby...it seemed to be quite the confusing situation. They heard Gunfire...Benjamin saw the other men dropping dead right before his eyes as his conscience seemed to come and go. One of them tried screaming as he started to be cooked alive inside of his own vehicle - another rifle shot put him out of his misery. But the source of this white death was until then invisible...the next thing Bejamin realizes is that he is being dragged away by the feet from the wreckage, and then finds himself on somebody's shoulder.

His conscience comes and goes for a long time, he is able to distinguish that they are walking through the snowy forest, and that the road and the wreckage - and his daughter - were hopelessly left behind. The column of smoke in the distance, in spite of being ominous and towerlike, was invisible due to the armor of endless trees. It was so cold!

The next thing he hears is the deepest, most complete silence, as if he were, perhaps, dead. He sees the hunter-hermit, not the friendliest figure one might add, rifle at his side...he might realize that he himself is laying down on a bunk, and that his wounds, although minor, have been taken care of by means of bandages and antiseptic. The soldier, looking older than he is speaks in a surprisingly young, but heavy voice:

[i]"You are safe."[/i]

The area was cold. Very cold. But not quite cold enough to constitute a danger in itself, there had to be some kind of heating in that raven-forsaken Bunker of his.

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