Sunday, February 26, 2017

Catman #1

Stately Auburndale Manor was about forty miles outside of Philadelphia. It was raining when Dwight Summers--in his disguise as Catman--arrived which just made him angrier. He had worked his way from Golden City to Philadelphia tracking down leads about The Order of St. Constantin. Auburndale Manor was supposedly a major hideout of the Order on the east coast. There were dozens of cars lining the circular driveway of the Manor so there were at least a decent amount of people here. People he could question. People he could threaten to give him any information on who killed his wife and daughter.

Catman approached the Manor and peered in the window. It was, indeed, a party. It looked like hundreds of people were in attendance. They were all wearing red robes except for the few that were wearing black ones. “Weirdos,” he muttered. He remembered that he was dressed in a cat suit. “I’m at least in this to stand for something,” he said to himself. He began wondering how he should get into the house. Through the back or the roof?

Auburndale Manor was three stories so going through the back would be easier but the element of surprise came from above. Catman compromised and darted to the back of the house and began scaling the wall and windows to the third floor. There was a fancy balcony leading to a grand bedroom. The balcony was unlocked. In the dark room, Catman was nearly invisible, he just had to quietly get to where everyone was on the first floor.

He stared out over the festivities from the top of the stairs. He devised a plan in his head about how all this would go down. He would ignore the one in black robes and go for the ones in red. The reds may not know anything but the ones in black, he wanted to scare.

Catman watched for several minutes until he saw an opening. One of the black robes began talking and everyone turned to watch him. A couple minutes into the black robe’s speech, Catman leapt into the crowd. He landed on several and began throwing punches around to the ones still standing around him.

Like in the cave, he seemed to blackout during the fight. When he came to, many red robes were laid sprawled on the floor. Several had run away but three black robes remained. Catman quickly approached them. Neither of them seemed nervous.

“Priest Andreij,” Catman said.

“What about him?” one of the black robes asked.

“I’m looking for him. I’m looking for who killed my family,” Catman explained.

“If your family was killed, Andreij probably doesn’t know anything about it,” another answered. “The Order is controlled by him but he’s more of a figurehead. Each chapter has its own leader. You know this isn’t going to bring your family back, right?”

Catman’s fist caved in that black robe’s face and he slumped to the floor, blood spilling from his nose and mouth. “Who runs the chapter in Golden City?”

“I don’t know. I’ve met Jack Mancietti, he’s a boxer in Golden City and a member of the Order. He might know who’s in charge.”

“Thank you,” Catman said. He turned and walked away.

Jack Mancietti’s boxing gym was in College Hill, a small neighborhood that used to be home to some of the most educated and wealthy citizens of Golden City. When the college closed, the neighborhood quickly disintegrated.

Mancietti’s Gym gave hope to the kids of the neighborhood. It was a place where the boys could avoid drugs and the prostitutes. After learning about him, Catman was shocked to learn a man like him was a past of this perverted Order.

The gym was unlocked so Catman just walked in. He heard the sounds of fists hitting a sandbag. He walked toward the sound and saw a man punching a sandbag suspended from the ceiling. “Jack Mancietti?”

“Yep,” two more hits.

“Do you belong to the Order of St. Constantin?”

“Who’s asking?”

“I’m Catman. The Order killed my family.”

“I’m sorry to hear that. I don’t know anything about that,” Jack said. “But if you beat me in the ring, I’ll tell you who you need to see.”