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Devil That You Know Ep 7: Little Cracks (Pt 1)

"It's always the smalls of cracks that can break a person. It's the slow knife that cuts the deepest, the little push that starts the descent into madness. Grinding down, slowly, methodically, until there's nothing left."


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♙Kai Hamilton♙


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As it would turn out Kai wasn't fired. However, if you asked him, the alternative?


Wasn't ideal.


Kai's head snaps to the side when the punch hits the side of his jaw. Blood was in his mouth before he could feel the rush of pain. He stumbles to the ground with a thud.


"Fucking piece of shit."


The sounds of the footstep walking way brought a wave of relief to Kai. At least for today, it would seem his torment is over. He lets out a huff and spits out the blood that was building up in his mouth.


"Kai?! What the-"


Kai silently curses to himself as he draws his head up again to look at the fast-approach face of Rafeeqa. Trailing behind her was Arthur who's face went from concern to stormy as he took in the damage. To be honest, Kai was expecting much worst given how badly he fucked up.


He had been dressed down by Morris for a good portion of the morning. Calling him all kinds of stuff before being put on desk duty of effective immediately. All day the eyes of everyone in the station were just glue to him. He knew things would only get worst from here. Then lunchtime came around and he gets up to finally get something to eat only to be cornered and forcibly brought behind the station. Then the fists flew.


"Kai, who the hell did this?!" Rafeeqa said, searching his face eyeing every injury.


"..Don't worry about." He mumbled in response.


It wasn't like this wasn't expected after what he did. Rafeeqa's rage is comforting though.


"Kai-"


"Rafee, enough." Kai said wave her hands off.


Arthur helps Kai stand and brush off the stray dirt that clings to him. Kai's pride may be bruised but he knew this was only just the beginning. Rafeeqa's face however morphs from upset to enraged as she looks between the two of them.


"Kai."


"Rafeeqa, let it go." Arthur even urges her.


She let out an angry laugh, her eyes narrowed in a glare at the two men.


"Let it go? Are you two insane?"


Kai lets a low sigh and he turns fully to her. Her angry could almost be felt in the air, coiling, and uncoiling like a snake. After getting no response from either man, she turns her head with an angry laugh and then nods.


"Okay... then I'll just go to Morris myself." She said then turning on her heels.


"Wait Rafee!" Kai said as he grabs onto her arm.


She snaps around almost instantly and shrugs off his hand roughly. The almost righteous anger in her eyes almost stops Kai's heart still. She eyes between the two before continuing on her way. Just like a storm, she left in a quick strut.


Even though she was pissed at him, her anger did warm his heart. Besides Father Walter and the nuns at the foster home, no one was ever in his corner like this.


A warm hand places itself on his shoulder and gives a short squeeze. Kai turns to Arthur who has a knowing look in his eyes.


"Rafeeqa is quite the woman, she cares about you a lot." Arthur said in an almost teasing tone.


Kai's heart skips a beat and his mouth drops open in response but it takes him a few tries before he can properly form words.


"O-oh? Well I mean, she's always like that..." Kai says in a mumbled, almost shy.


"Haha, no she isn't." Arthur says before giving one last pat and walking back toward the station entrance.


Kai gives a small smile before following behind Arthur. When the two finally reenter the stations, they can hear the sounds of raised voices from Morris's office. It wasn't loud enough for anything notable and it didn't last long. Suddenly the door is ripped open, Rafeeqa's face is both furious but also defeated. She slams the door behind her and just stands outside Morris's office with a frustrated sigh and runs a hand through her hair. Kai creeps over slowly as if Rafeeqa was something of an angry bear ready to pounce.


"No luck...?" Kai says, almost in a teasing manner.


The answering glare was more than an answer to his rather redundant question.


"Sorry, sorry."


Rafeeqa just turns away from him with a grunt.


"...All you men are the same. So damn prideful." She grumbles as she walks back to her desk.


Kai smiles at her as he walks with her.


"Sorry Rafee.."


"Whatever.." She mumbles.


They both return to their desks and things seemed to return to the normal process. However, Kai could feel the difference as clear as day as the minutes turned to hours. Like a feeling of a bug crawling on your skin, he could feel the piece gaze of eyes on him. It wasn't like before though, these gazes weren't just fueled with mocking scorn or even idle curiosity.


These were gazes filled with ugly hatred.


He continued to work but it just felt like he was in a room with no lights, just large eyes glaring from the peaks of the shadows. That high pitch white noise was there, just at the back of his mind. Buzzing around like an insistence fly, not enough to be overly noticeable but just constant background noise.


That end of the day couldn't come any slower for Kai.


It was pitch black outside when he finally stumbled into his apartment. The apartment in question felt as cold as it always did. There were time's he wished desperately to be living back at the orphanage. This place held nothing dear in his heart and he didn't think it ever would.


After eating, Kai found himself seated before his tv, staring lifelessly at the screen.


The news was all the same. Someone got richer more than likely due to the suffering of someone else, the slums get worst and life just continues spinning.


Around and around it goes.


With a loud and almost disgusted sigh, he shuts off the tv and walks towards his bedroom. His apartment wasn't big by any standards, nor luxurious. It was simple, and served its purpose, just as he needed. Granted with his pay he could afford something better but he would never stop his donates to the orphanage.


Every job he's gotten, he always made sure to send money back. He will never forget where he comes from, even if anyone else would.


You are fighting a war, Kai. One that is long and hard-fought.


A bitter laugh echoed from his throat as he thinks back to Father Walters's words. A dark feeling swarms into his stomach.


"A war huh? A war against who exactly? And with what army do I possibly have?"


You are a good man, brave...cari-.


Kai turns swiftly as if the cut off the memory of the kind words whispering in his mind. His eyes shut as he tries to turn his mind off.


Things will be different, a small childish part of him cried.


A day turned into a few days, and then to a week.


Things didn't get better, as he knew they wouldn't. Everything, in fact, went from bad to worst. What started as just small sneer comments, and the occasional roughhousing became blatant harassment and full-on brawls which usually ended up with Kai getting dressed down by Morris. At one point, Kai thought maybe, just maybe Morris would be helpful.


His exact words were ones Kai was fully expecting.


"If you don't like it here, then quit." Morris said, not even looking away from the reports he was reading over.


Numerous words, nasty and biting wanted desperately to claw their way through. But an almost cold realization pored over Kai. He knew this was going to happen eventually.


At some point or another, he was going to fuck up big and make his life at the station hell. To be fair, it was already on thin ice since his first big case.


The police in Briagas stand with their own against all foreign threats. And in this place, Kai was nothing more than a threat.


Sure he could try to go to a higher-up, maybe get somewhere there. But the chances of anything actually happening are slim to none.


He knew this going in, he knew this!


So...why does it hurt still?


He wordlessly stumbles out of Morris's office and back to his desk. Ever since the incident at the gala, Kai was permanently placed on desk duty, filling crap from years past. Felt like his earlier years when he first joined the force.


It would have been fine, if not for the constant harassment of his peers. Every those who would have never dared tried anything before, people who Kai knows for a fact he had been nothing but kind to. It was fucking ridiculous.


That white noise was there once again, this time however it was loud. Crawling around in his head like a worm.


"Kai!"


Kai's head snaps around. He was at the orphanage once again.


He didn't even remember leaving the station, which more than accounts for how stress he actually was.


It wasn't Father Walters to greet him but instead sister Sarah. She appeared a bit tired which given that it was the end of the week would make sense.


"Sarah, hey. Sorry to drop by again unannounced like this." Kai said a half-truth apology.


He honestly needed to be here, otherwise, he felt like he was going to do something crazy.


"Oh don't worry about that! Though Walter isn't here right now. I think he was meeting some planner in regards to the big adoption day." She said with a smile.


She then motioned him to follow her. The warmth from the orphanage filled him almost immediately. There were a few kids, both young and older playing in the foyer area. He could practically taste the memories of when he darkens these halls, back then though things weren't quite as serene.


"...Takes you back doesn't it?"


Kai turns to Sarah who had a similar look of nostalgia on her face.


"Ha, yeah a bit." Kai said turning his head back to the kids.


Kai and Sarah were both raised here around the same time, Sarah was one of the more older kids around while Kai was the wild child. Getting into all kinds of trouble with Sarah in tow. A sudden clench goes through his heart however as he drifts through his memory.


"....I ...I wish Evan were still here to see this. He would have loved it."


Sarah's face dips a bit as she too seems to be lost in her memories.


"....Y-yeah.. he would." Her voice came out in an uneven crack.


Evan Reeds, Father Walter's son, was the third to their trio of friendship. Where Sarah was the strong-headed leader and Kai was the wild prankster, Evan was something like a missing puzzle piece to their collective chaos, a kind, and gentle soul. Dark brown hair that always fell in front of his dark-colored eyes. Tall, and a bit on the lankier side. He was older than both of them but had a pure naivety that neither had. He softens their edges and kept them from toeing the line of trouble.


Everyone loved him both in the orphanage and around the slums back then.


Which was why it was such a shock when suddenly he was found murdered in the most gruesome of manners.


The world from then on was just a bit darker from then on.

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