In a million, billion years, I never would have expected Inquisitor to run. He never struck me as sentimental. Either Mr Creepy had his hooks in his brain all along, or Inquisitor was up to more than just feeding us to his former brother.
Inquisitor was the leader of our little group. He relayed orders to us from his own superiors, sent people on missions, and generally just kept us operating smoothly. A real micromanager.
After our little confrontation, I wasn't too surprised when I didn't see him early yesterday, but I wasn't exactly going out of my way to look for him. In fact, I hadn't planned on leaving the apartment at all, except...
Jet came knocking at my door around noon, giggling like a maniac. When he finally calmed down, he said, "Inquisitor did a runnner."
For a few seconds, I thought he meant that Inquisitor killed one and was baffled by his amusement. I mean, it happens. Inquisitor's not the sort to do it in a particularly amusing way, not like some who see death as the ultimate joke and go out of their way to make it ironic.
But then he explained how one of Inquisitor's toadies (Cassia) worked up the courage to knock on his door to get her daily to-do list at sunup. Usually he's already slipped it under her door by the time the sun rises, but he hadn't that morning. Inquisitor didn't answer, but the door popped open. He must not have closed it right when he left. She was curious I guess and poked her head in since he never let anyone in his apartments. There was no sign of him, but the place was trashed like he had a tantrum (which I can believe.) I guess she was a little alarmed because she went in and looked around. There was no sign of him, just the mess.
Well, since no one is ever allowed into his rooms, Cassia had no way of knowing if that's how they normally were. So she went downstairs and saw the darkling was gone too. The real clincher though was when she went down to his workshop and all his tools were gone.
So she went haring up the stairs to tell everyone Inquisitor had gone rogue. Inquisitor's former lackeys all got together to figure out who should be in charge in his absence, and from there, things fell apart pretty quickly because they ALL wanted to be in charge. At which point, everyone but a few of the less politically minded Anunnaki knew Inquisitor was gone. So Jet came looking for me, since he figured I didn't know and wanted to share a good joke.
If Jet expected me to laugh, he was REALLY disappointed, because whatever anyone else might think, Inquisitor running off is not good. It makes us all look bad because he was in charge of us, and the in-fighting among his former suck-ups made us look even worse. So the sooner we got ourselves back onto track, the better. Well, I'd planned on talking to Mercury about Melissa anyway. It seemed like the best time to go look for him.
Mercury is.... difficult. He's old and irritable at the best of times, looking a bit like Franklin Douglas but with piercing eyes so pale brown they're practically orange. His mask has black smears on either side of the mouth that make it look as if he's always scowling, and the smears under his eyes and across the forehead only enhance that. He doesn't speak, least not with his mouth. We didn't always communicate with sound, he says, so he refuses to use our "slave language." Considering he WAS a slave prior to the Civil War, he's got more reason to be outraged than most.
He's got a really strong mental voice, which is why I had planned to talk to him about Melissa. She's going to need him to teach her how to speak so others will hear her. Least that's why her sister and her were brought in, telepathy; so she had that in her favor.
I figured no one told Mercury what was going on either, since everyone tends to avoid him because they're not comfortable with his voice in their heads. Which means they resist hearing him so he has to shout. Meh, I can see where he's coming from, and it's not like Father makes noises like an animal either. So I went looking for him, hoping Inquisitor hadn't sent him away on a mission like Liger. If Liger had been home, all the squabbling would have been over in a second. He would have smacked some heads together, assigned someone to be in charge, and that would have been the end of it.
Turns out I didn't have to tell him what was going on, and I should have realized he would just know. Unless it's shielded, he hears every stray thought within a couple blocks of the building. His gut reaction was to let the "children" fight, but he conceded my point about how it would make us look if Father came or he had to send someone to restore order. So he shouted for everyone to "shut the hell up" and told them he was in charge until further notice. Then he assigned everyone duties, more or less what they had been before Inquisitor bailed on us except he told Inquisitor's old lackeys to clean up his apartment. Then he told everyone I was the new Interrogator, second to him in terms of leadership, and that was that.
I am not comfortable with this change. I don't feel qualified, and there's lots of siblings who are going to resent me because I'm not an elder and haven't remembered any of my past lives. I hope when Mercury gets in touch with his superiors, they send someone better qualified than me.