STREETS
by Henry Wyckoff
A Highlander/Sentinel Crossover
September 1998



Chapter 16

Tutyr stared at Pierson, {{You're a very hypocritical son of a whore, Methos. My father told me the tale of Gilgamesh before the archaeologists found the clay tablets, and I know what you did in your own youthful days, so don't be throwing curses at me!}}

Pierson stared at Tutyr, {{My name is Adam Pierson, and except for my studies I have nothing to do with Methos.}}

Neither Blair nor Jim could understand what they said; both had never seen such focus and anger in Pierson's glare, and they got the feeling that they were looking at two tomcats about to duke it out with their claws.

{{Do you care to make a wager on that? One eyewitness testimony and a quick test with a knife will tell me otherwise! Not to mention, I seem to remember the name of Ivan Petrovich! Or is that just another convenient coincidence, Ivan?}}

Blair didn't want to see the place erupt in a nasty fight. A random watching of Geraldo told him that much. "Calm down . . . what's happening?"

"Would you like to tell the story, or shall I?" Tutyr glared at Pierson.

"By all means, old man."

*

The Kurgan and I got the information we needed from the assassin, and left him not quite a eunuch, but a man who wished he was. I'll leave that to your imagination. The assassin told us that a Greek by the name of Alexandros had ordered our abductions. He wanted to rid the world of us in a secluded place so that nobody would be accused of anti-religious crimes.

Naturally, the assassins were told only what they needed to know, so we were unable to learn why just yet, but we really didn't care. Names and places were good enough for us.

The chapter house was disguised well. It was hidden within a church. That's when I got my very first lesson in cursing, Kurgan-style.

"What's wrong?" I asked.

"It's holy ground."

"So? Priests get killed on holy ground all the time!"

I think I was the only person in all of history to force the Kurgan to genuinely laugh at something. "You don't understand. There are several rules that my kind must follow. We can never break them. We can fight our own kind only one-on-one, and we can't kill on holy ground -- at all."

"That's stupid! What's going to happen? Is God going to strike you down with lightning?"

He wasn't laughing this time. "Nobody knows, but it's a tradition that nobody has ever broken, and I've never heard an immortal brag about it. I won't be the first."

I shrugged. "Does this tradition say anything about not beating up mortals?"

He thought about it. "No. This might be fun."

We boldly entered the church. I made special care to knock down all the candles I could see as we went along to find the Watchers.

One monk saw us and tried to stop us. "What are you doing? Those are candles to bless the dead!" I have to give that young man some credit. He had the guts to say that and wait calmly for what came.

I patted him on the head, "Go on your way, little worm, or else my friend might stomp on you. The Kurgans were known for tossing babies into pits with starving wolves to fight for meat."

That sent him running. Sweating, most definitely.

"How did you know that?" the Kurgan asked me.

I shrugged, "I guessed. I guess I know now."

We found our way to the Watchers' Library. My father's friend and the Greek were there, waiting for us. These days, in addition to the Kurgan's sword (the one he gave me as a young man), I carried a pistol. This I used to shoot my father's friend in the knee. I wanted him to suffer, not quite die yet.

He screamed loudly, holding his ruined left knee. I reflected then how the screaming of men didn't bother me anymore.

The Greek paled as he looked at the Kurgan, possibly recognizing him.

"What's the matter?" the Kurgan asked. "You don't like it when your quarry makes the fight a fair one?"

He gulped, stammering, "I just didn't expect you to come here, that's all."

I cut to the chase. "What do you have against us? Were it not for yesterday, I would have been content to bury your memory with that of my family."

Alexandros sighed, "We could not forget you, however. You accused Georgi -- and in fact, all of the Watchers -- of apathy. However, we are not guilty of that, because if we were, you would still be able to destroy Armenian villages. Simple revenge is one thing . . . but attempting to systematically destroy the Armenian race is an atrocity which we cannot allow to happen."

"You had plans to kill the both of us? If you wished to save Armenia, you could have saved my village!"

He shook his head, "It doesn't work that way."

"How does it work? You get to pick and choose as you go along? That's how it works?"

"I think you're being a bit petty about this."

"I don't." I took my sword and chopped off Alexandros' hand. "I'll give you the chance to save yourself. Use your good hand to stop the flow of blood, if you can. Maybe then, you'll feel just a taste of what it's like to be me."

Georgi looked at me as if I was the Devil, while the Kurgan chuckled, amused at the sight of a self-important man just staring at the blood shooting out of his new stump, and then collapsing on the ground.

"What do you want?" Georgi screamed.

I shrugged, "It doesn't matter anymore. I just wanted to send your people a message. If you cross our path, you'd better prepare to pay for the consequences of challenging us."

My intention was to let him live to effectively deliver that message. As we turned around to leave, the Kurgan looked nervous, as if he sensed something I couldn't.

"There's someone here."

That's when he saw our Mr. Pierson, who went by the name of Ivan Petrovich, enter the grounds of the church. The Kurgan growled, "A Horseman." I didn't know he spoke with a capital 'h'.

"He's walking now." I replied.

Pierson didn't sense us, and the Kurgan thought it would be wiser if we chose a different ground. I didn't question him, and he didn't answer.

*

Pierson nodded. "I knew that someone was near, but since the feeling faded, I didn't push it. I wished I had once I found out what you'd done. Georgi never walked again. He had to lose the leg. You know how bad medicine was in those days, in that part of the world."

Tutyr shrugged, "I meant what I did, and I have no regrets. The bastard had what was coming to him."

"So what we you doing there?" Blair asked.

Pierson looked down, "I was there to see an old friend. Alexandros."

*

Georgi told me who you were. What truly broke his heart was not that the son of a good friend had blown out his knee, but rather that the boy's heart had turned as cold as ice, and that he blamed the wrong people for the death of his village.

I was full of anger, and took it on myself to stop those two.

However, we live in the real world, and sometimes it takes many long years to track a man. By then, Tutyr was in Turkey, living his usual life in the gutter. I kicked in his door and found him sleeping with a whore.

I had expected Tutyr to be half-dead from all the drugs he consumed, but I was surprised to find that he had actually improved his health. The woman in his bed screamed as he reached for his pistol and shot me in the chest. It was a one-shot gun, for which I was glad.

"Who are you?!"

"Ivan Petrovich," I said to him, shrugging off my collapsing lung as I drew my sword. "I'm here to make you pay for the death of Alexandros."

"You've followed me all this time for a self-important monster?" He was shocked. "What kind of a man deserves that loyalty?"

I spat, "A friend deserves that kind of loyalty."

Tutyr, for all that he'd done, had the guts to face me in a fair fight. That's the only nice thing I can say about him. The rest isn't nice.

We fought in his small room, and I must admit that he nearly killed me more than a few times. Just when I almost had him, the whore threw herself in the way.

For a few silent moments, both of us stared at her as she died. I really hadn't wanted her to involved -- she'd had no part of it. Now she was a part, and I could see that Tutyr had become as dangerous to me as any immortal I could name.

He didn't need to speak -- his sword spoke more eloquently than any words he could have uttered. I had hoped he'd just run me through the heart, but that wasn't the end of it. It should have been obvious that Tutyr would know how to kill an immortal.

My only good fortune was that we had an interloper. I don't know what happened immediately afterwards, because I 'died' at that point. When I woke up, I found that everyone was gone.

I searched for Tutyr, but unsuccessfully. When I heard his name once more, it was as a Watcher. He had gained a reputation of cleaning up unsavory scenes, such as when high-risk mortals learn about the Watchers. Immortals . . . that's all right, but Heaven forbid that a mortal should learn about a brotherhood of voyeurs!

* * *

Outside, Latro nodded. "I remember too . . . "

* * * *


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