Type M Blood: Part Seventeen

They sprinted across the open field that was outside the facility, then ducked under low hanging branches into a dense forest. The sunlight was gone, the vegitations had grown so close together. Plants crowded together, vying for sunlight and nutrients. It was a dim, murky twilight under the arms of the towering trees.
Will turned to Ash. "You lead, you see better in dimmer lighting than I do."
Ash nodded and led the way. They walked quickly through the forest, over a thick carpet of dead leaves and mosses. Their feet churned up the mixture, releasing the pungent scent of decaying plants. Ash leapt over a thick, knarled root. Will tripped over it. As Ash helped Will up, the baying of the bloddhound rang out, the sound bouncing off trees.
Ash looked up at the tree Will had tripped over. "Up there, now!"
Will scrambled up the old oak with Ash close behind him. The dog continued howling. Ash and Will held their breath, praying the dog wouldn't find them. The baying grew louder as the dog got closer. Suddenly, the dog ran under the tree and stopped. It was followed by a man in a lab coat. Another man, this one built like Gustav, came next, holding Blaze. A gun was pressed to his head. Ash bit her lip to keep from screaming out. Will put one hand over her mouth. She looked at him and nodded, a sign she would stay quiet, no matter what happened. Will moved his hand away.
"Stupid dog! There's no one here. Dog must have gotten confused."
The guard shook his head. "I know my dogs, and they don't make mistakes. They're somewhere around here." He looked around. "But maybe they need some incentive to come out."
He pulled a dagger out of a hidden pocket and lovingly looked at the blade. Blaze's eyes grew wider as the guard brought the dagger closer.
"Call your daughter, Blaze."
Blaze shook his head.
The guard shook Blaze. "Call her!"
"I will not. She deserves to escape from scum like you!"
The guard stabbed Blaze in the arm. "Call your daughter!"
Will had to restrain Ash from jumping from the tree.
"I said call her!"
Blaze closed his eyes. "Vanessa, if you can hear me, don't come out."
The guard raised the gun. "Vanessa, come here if you want your dad to live. Or I'll pump his guts full of lead!"
Will turned Ash to face him and shook his head.
The guard smiled. "Fine, Vanessa. Say goodbye to Daddy Blaze!"
He aimed the gun at Blaze's stomach and pulled the trigger. Blaze crumpled to the ground. Ash broke free from Will'a grasp and desprately looked for something sharp. She saw a sharp piece of bark and cut her palms with it. Ash held her hands out over the guard. Fire rained down, burning everything. The guard and scientist screamed as they were burned. The dog yelped loudly. After a minute, Will put his bleeding hand over the fire and quenched it. The dog, guard, and scientist were nothing but charred bones. Blaze was still crumpled up on the ground.
Ash leapt to the ground and fell to her knees by her father. "Dad, don't leave me, please. Don't leave!"
Blaze turned towards his daughter. "I'll never leave you, Ash. I'll always be with you."
Ash shook her head. "Don't die, just…just hang on and we'll get help."
Blaze smiled sadly and pressed a bloody hand against Ash's cheek. "Just look down to your chest, and a little to the left, and that's where I'll always be."
Ash shook her head as steaming tears fell from her eyes. "No, you can't leave me! No!"
Blaze took his hand away from her cheek and pressed it against his stomach. "I'm glad…I got to be with you…for a short while. I love you, Ash."
Blaze closed his eyes.
Ash layed her head on his chest. "No! Dad, come back! Don't leave me!"
Will came closer and sat next to her. "Ash, we'll bury him."
Ash lifted her head. "He's not dead, Will. We can't bury him."
Will nodded and put his arm around her shoulder. "Okay, we won't. But we can put him someplace where he'll be safe."
Ash nodded, her body numb. Will helped her up. Ash stood looking at Blaze's body. Will dragged the body and propped it in a sitting position against a tree.
Ash walked closer. "I love you, dad."
A soft wind whispered through the trees.
Will stood behind Ash. "He loves you, too. He gave the ultimate sacrifice so you could be free."
Ash nodded. "Will…"
"What is it, baby?"
Ash turned around and looked in Will's eyes. "Will, we can come back and visit him, right? To check on him?"
Will nodded. "Of course."
Ash leaned against Will and buried her face in his shoulder. Will wrapped his arms tightly around her and held her close.

The End

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