Fanfic: The Whistler – Chapter 16 [Haven, Rated: T]

Title: The Whistler Author: Karolyn Gray Fandom: Haven Summary: A child kidnapping and murder case is disturbingly familiar to Nathan. Main character(s): Nathan Wuornos, Audrey Parker Rating: T Warnings: violence, kidnapping, child murder Spoilers: Up to 1.13 Spiral Disclaimer: Haven, characters, and related indicia is owned and copyrighted by E1 Entertainment, Syfy, NBC Universal, Stephen King and all related parties. No copyright infringement is intended. This is a work of fan based fiction and is not endorsed or affiliated in any way, shape, or form to the owners and/or copyright holders. Author’s Notes: Thanks to Nat, PKD, and Scar for beta reading. All errors that remain are mine. The story is currently rated T but later chapters may push the rating up to M for subject matter.

A/N: An extra warning for possibly disturbing imagery.

The Whistler - Chapter 16

By Karolyn Gray

He smelled dampness, dirt, and decay around him. He also smelled urine, feces, and mold. The combined stench almost overwhelmed another smell he recognized all too well – blood.

He groaned as he opened his eyes, a lone lamp dimly illuminated the dark room he found himself in. He knew the room was relatively small—about half the size of the floor above, but the shadows cast on the crumbling and cracked white concrete walls stained with years of damp—older sections incongruously clad in wood slats—made it seem cavernous in the flickering lamp's soft golden glow. It took him a moment to recall where he was. When it came to him, he felt the terror and fear clamor for control of him once more. He tried to block out the screams and the reasons for them. He didn't want to remember, he can't remember, he wanted to forget it all, forget the nightmare, the terror, and the blood.

He heard whimpering off to his left, soft but still eerily loud in this confined space. He opened his eyes and saw a small form curled up into a tight ball. He recognized the other child, a boy. He gasped when the boy met his gaze with terror in his hazel eyes.

Nathan gasped as he woke with a start. He tried to move his arms and frowned when he realized he could not. Shaking his head to clear away the last vestiges of stupor, he tried once again to move his arms. Turning his head he saw his arms were bound above him with thick chains and a sturdy padlock attached to a metal bar mounted into concrete pylons. He was not so high that his feet aren't touching the wooden floor but he was straining never less to keep his balance on his toes.

"I'm sorry."

Nathan looked over to the source of the voice only to see the blond haired boy—Mike, he remembered the boys name was Mike—as dirty and sad looking as ever. The boy was unrestrained but clearly too afraid to try and escape their captors on his own.

"Not your fault," he assured Mike.

Nathan took in his surroundings carefully noting the simple wooden stairs and the overall rough hewn walls of their prison. He could tell the wood cladding was mounted over the cell's concrete walls. Some of the wood was old, dark with damp and rot in some places, others bright and fresh cut from new repairs. There appeared to be a general dampness given the sheen on the wood and exposed concrete that allowed mold and fungus to grow in the corners.

His eyes passed over what appeared to be pile of clothes and he froze as he realized the mass was moving slowly but rhythmically. He looked closer and could see dark hair and light skin.

"Hey," Nathan says urgently. "Hey, kid."

The child moved ever so slight peering out at him from under a mop of black hair. It was enough for Nathan to recognize Kenneth Hamilton. "Hey, Kenny is that you? Can I can you Kenny?"

The boy looked less afraid as he warily lifts his head to take the bound man in, brushing some of his hair out of the way. "Ev'ryone calls me Kenny, Officer Wuornos"

Nathan was surprised the boy knew him. He doubted the boy's father, Keith Hamilton, would have mentioned him to the boy. Even if he had, he doubted Keith would have had anything good to say about him to his son. "You know me?"

The boy nodded slowly, brown eyes fearful, as he sat up on his knees. Nathan could see now he was wearing green pants what might have been a green flannel shirt and brown t-shirt, all dirty and stained. "I 'member you from the safety class last year."

"Okay, good." Nathan said with a reassuring smile. "Listen, I'm going to get us out of here and you're going to see your parents again. But I need your help here, alright?"

Kenny nodded uncertainly, wiping his nose with the sleeve of his shirt as he sniffled once. Despite the movement Nathan still couldn't tell if the boy was unshackled like the blond haired boy.

"Can you tell me how many other kids are here?" Nathan asked.

"Clive and Jenny, but I haven't seen them in a while" Kenny's eyes start to well up and his bottom lip quivered at his own words. He cast a terrified glance towards the ceiling above them as a soft thump was heard.

"What's going on?" Nathan whispered.

"Sh. They'll hear you," Mike whispered back, hazel eyes fixed on the stairs. Nathan could only guess his time for answers was rapidly coming to an end.

"Are you hurt?" Nathan asked Kenny.

"I want to go home. Please, I want to go home!" Kenny said with tears in his eyes.

"Sh, sh." Nathan hushed him. "And I'll take you home, I promise. But you have to tell me first if you're hurt?"

"No," the boy said plaintively.

"Okay, don't worry. We'll get out of this I promise."

"They're coming," Mike warned them in a fierce whisper.

A moment later a loud creaking was heard and then heavy steps as three people came down the stairs, an older man, and two others about Nathan's age- a man and a woman, Solomon Mitchum and Tricia Hagerson. Nathan found himself stunned into silence at who stood before him. The man smiled broadly at Kenneth Hamilton who once more curled up into a ball as the woman quickly lit another two lanterns to better light the space.

The older man smiled broadly as he turned, eyes seeming to light up with delight at seeing Nathan was conscious. "Oh good, you're awake. I apologize for the chains, son, but they're necessary for now."

"Absalom Mitchum?" Nathan asked in disbelief.

Abe simply nodded and slowly walked over to Nathan with a slight hitch in his step, seemingly unconcerned in the least at having a cop and two children hostage in an old moldy basement. He smiled broadly at the cop as he spread his hands in a welcoming gesture. "Hello, Nathan. It's so good to see you today. I had hoped you would come by sooner."

Nathan frowned at Abe, noting over the older man's shoulder that Saul was watching Nathan and his father with ill disguised unease as he pointedly ignoring Tricia Hagerson sliding up beside him. "What's going on here? What's Tricia Hagerson doing here?"

"Why wouldn't my dutiful daughter be here? I called and she came." Abe proudly smile as he beckoned the younger woman over. She easily slipped into the older man's fatherly embrace, beaming happily at him before gracing Nathan with a charming smile. Abe too returned his look to Nathan by all appearances the picture of an elderly patriarch. "And now that you are here, our family is back together again."

Nathan furrowed his brow in confusion, a sense of dread settling into his stomach. Abe couldn't be involved in…what? Kidnapping? Murder? It didn't make any sense to Nathan. He knew the man had lost a child to the killer the last time the Troubles had been to Haven.

"What are you talking about?" Nathan asked. He glanced over to Kenny and Mike before he pulled on his own restraint to emphasize his question. "Abe, why are you doing this?"

"To protect our family, of course," the old man replied easily. He released Tricia who stepped a few feet away and watched Abe with a devoted expression. "Why does any man do what he does? For family, Nathan."

"But," Nathan swallowed hard, barely able to bring himself to accept what Abe Mitchum was implying. "You're killing kids."

He was surprised when Abe simply nodded his head with a small regretful look on his face. "It's tradition, a necessary sacrifice, Nathan, for the betterment of our family and our kind."

"But your own daughter, Victoria, she was killed last time. How could you…." Nathan stopped at the pained looked that came across the older man's lined face. Guilt. Regret. "Oh my god." Nathan whispered as he realized what had happened to Victoria Mitchum.

"I see you comprehend now. Victoria was a necessary sacrifice, albeit the only one I've ever regretted given my son's lack of skill with his gift." Abe cast a disdainful look towards Saul, who visibly flinched at his father's words. "She wanted the killing to stop, wanted to bring in outsiders to help us."

Saul bristled at his father's look and stepped forward. "She was a traitor!" He declared angrily.

"Hush. She was a caring soul. The fault was mine for not educating her properly in our gift and why we must make the sacrifice. Perhaps if I had shared my plans to her as I had you, she would have understood. It is a fault I shall not repeat with Nathan here." Though Abe's words were said softly and with great compassion, Nathan could hear the deadly steel underneath that caused Saul to instantly snap his mouth shut on any retort he had planned to say. Nathan too felt inclined to remain silent, but he couldn't

"I won't let you get away with this." He knew his words sounded pathetic, perhaps even a bit of wishful thinking on his part, given his current state but Nathan was serious. He meant every word. "I'll stop you."

Abe smiled at that, not mockingly, just accepting of the young man's words. He gestured to Saul and Tricia and himself. "You're already a part of this, son. You've just forgotten, that's all." He looked apologetic as he continued. "But your ignorance was necessary to ensure my plans came to fruition without interference from Garland Wuornos or those nosy Teagues brothers."

Nathan noticed Saul shift a little, looking decidedly upset. He crossed his arms over chest, his dark navy pullover and slacks making him almost a shadowy stain against the dull concrete walls behind him despite the bright illumination from the three lanterns. "He isn't going to help us, he isn't one of us. We should just kill him and be done with it!"

"Shut up, Saul. If you hadn't proven to be so weak and useless in the first place I would have never needed to search for new children, new bloodlines to add to our clan." Abe spat back, giving his son a look of complete disgust. Saul tried to hold a hateful gaze on his father but quickly wavered and looked down, shamefaced. Abe snorted in contempt before turning back to Nathan his face smoothing out into a look of pride.

"Now you, Nathan, you are not weak," Abe said. "You are going to help us achieve greatness."

"I'll never help you," Nathan told him flatly, meeting and holding his gaze.

Abe seemed pleased by his defiance, smiling knowingly. He stepped closer and stroked Nathan's cheek. When Nathan did not even flinch, he nodded his head and leaned forward whispering in Nathan's ear.

"I think you will, once you know the reasons for the sacrifice. More importantly, I want you to help me end them once and for all."

Nathan tried to pull away at the Selectman's words, confused as to what he meant.


Abe blew a soft whistling tune. Nathan squeezed his eyes at the jolt of a memory.

"I won't help you," he spit back. All he felt is black rage coursing through him, a desire to not just kill this man, but to make him suffer.

"You already have, my boy." The man lovingly stroked his cheek. "But it's time for you to sleep now. When you awake everything will be fine. You'll see."

Nathan snapped his eyes open, gasping as he felt fear race through his veins. Underneath the fear something moved, a stirring darkness within him. He found Abe peering into his eyes. He knew those eyes—those cold, dark, empty eyes. He could hear the music once again as Abe nodded at him as if answering a question he didn't even realize he had asked.

"I—I won't help you," Nathan whispered, feeling his certainty of those words slipping away.

"You already have, Nathan. And you will again," Abe said confidently. "Together we will gain control over Haven and ensure our family's future. We will erase the Mitchum's blood curse upon Haven, end the sacrifices, and finally release the Five Sisters from Wytchebough so their spirits may finally rest."

Nathan shook his head in denial, even as he felt rage starting to build within him. Rage at Abe and his delusional justifications, rage at the adults who had let this man get a hold of him as a child, rage at the other children for not fighting back. But mostly rage at him self for what he had done. "You're insane," Nathan snarled.

"Insane? For protecting ourselves and the other Troubled?" Abe asked casually. "For sacrificing their inferior children in exchange for a chance to end the killing?" Abe grabbed Nathan's chin holding the bound man's head still as he spoke. "You were so skilled, so quick to learn and excel. It was why I chose you."

Nathan grunted as the unfamiliar sensation of pain sliced through his head, eyes watering at the sensation.

Blood. Skin. Lines of red on flesh. A glint of blade. Screams. Whistling.

Purple bruises. Glistening steel. A buzz of the saw. Crimson patinas on whitewashed walls. Pleas for mercy. And still the music went on.

Grotesque sculptures of flesh, tissue, blood, and bone. The scent of fear, terror, and bloodlust. A canvas for the blackened soul.

He screamed.

Nathan screamed as the imagery came back to him—terrible memories of what he'd seen, what had been done under the Whistler's influence. Nathan fought back the sudden need to throw up in revulsion and the growing murderous frenzy once more.

"Ah you see, Saul. He is remembering." Abe sounded so pleased; Nathan couldn't help lunging at the older man in anger. He grunted as the chains rattled and he was brought up short by his bonds. It took him a moment to regain his balance on his tip toes, but it also allowed him to calm himself.

Understanding started to dawn at how the older man reasoned his crimes away.

"You take the special ones, the Troubled, and kill them," Nathan said.

Abe nodded. "Only certain ones, Nathan. Those too weak to be missed, but enough to sustain our family and fulfill the needs of the ritual." The old man frowned slightly as he continued, "That was the old way, the way of caution my ancestors followed to carry on William's legacy and Haven's penance. My way will be better. Once we control Haven, there will be no more need for penance and sacrifices."

"Why Me? Why Tricia?"

Abe seemed truly surprised at Nathan question.

"That's simple. It's because you both have a hunger fueling you—a desire for righteousness and justice. All those years of disparagement and abuse, slights and mocking, and yet you never retaliated against your tormentors. No one ever saw the need for justice and fairness in either of you, but I did." He explained. He gestured to Tricia who stood up taller under the eyes of the older man even as she looked down demurely.

"Tricia was like you Nathan. Abused and hurt in the most unspeakable ways, but no one knew, she kept it hidden away and tried to be like everyone else. So smart and aware of what was really happening in Haven, not the lies told her by adults in their cruel and willful ignorance. No one knew of her magnificent gift."

Abe leaned in conspiratorially towards Nathan. "A fine gift it is. The ability to tear asunder an object with a mere thought. A prick of the skin or snapping of bone, it is pure magnificence. When I had her here with me, it came forth." He closed his eyes, looking ecstatic at whatever memory he had with his time with Tricia. His eyes were alight with dark glee when he opened them again. "All of it. Such beautiful, righteous anger given form."

"And then you sent her home to kill her family," Nathan said point-blank.

"Yes, well, how was I supposed to know someone would be nearby and call the police before she could clean up?" Abe actually looked apologetically at Tricia, who quickly rushed in and gave the older man a hug.

"You're not under his control, are you, Tricia? You never were," Nathan asked.

Tricia scowled at that, but didn't let go of Abe. "Of course not, Nathan! My parents were monsters. They deserve what I did to them." She gazed adoringly at Abe as she continued. "But I had to protect Father so I made everyone think I was crazy. Lock me away until Father called for me."

Abe stroked her hair lovingly. "You see? Such strength and intelligence. She'll make a fine wife and mother for your children won't she, Saul?"

The younger man didn't look pleased by his father's words, but he remained stoic in his answer. "Yes, father."

"And me? Why didn't…." Nathan trailed off his question, now not so certain he wanted to know what Abe had planned for him. Tricia had willingly joined Abe's psychotic beliefs but Nathan couldn't accept that Abe had any hold over him. He certainly felt no loyalty or impetus towards the man. If anything he only felt a deep hatred, a dark desire to tear the man apart and make him suffer.

"Why didn't I have you kill your family and then adopt you as I had planned for Tricia?" Abe asked his question for him. The older man actually spoke warmly of his reasons. "Because you're father was Garland Wuornos. I could tell even then he would be Haven's Chief of Police someday. But more importantly I knew he would raise you to be strong and disciplined; someone capable of doing what was needed to protect our family. Your mother was also a kind woman. From her you would gain compassion to temper your strength."

"Where Tricia is the blade you will be the mind that guides it. My heir, the son I always wanted."

Abe paused for a moment, pulling out a picture from his pocket and showing it to Nathan. In the photo was a young woman. "By the way, I think you'll like my youngest daughter, Honorea-Marie. Mary has been quite smitten with you since you danced with her at the police fund raiser."

Nathan frowned for a moment before remembering the fund raiser Abe spoke of, the last one the town had held to raise funds to repair and update both the police and fire stations. It had been six years ago and he'd danced with more than a half dozen girls whose faces he didn't remember. He knew more than one was sent his way by social climbing parents and local political figures hoping to tie themselves to the police chief's son. The girl in the picture was young, no older than thirty, with flowing ebony locks and dark eyes like her father. While not what Nathan would consider beautiful she did have striking features that were pretty. He didn't recognize her. Nathan just shook his head in disbelief as Abe placed the photo in his pocket again.

"I won't do this." Nathan declared.

Abe didn't seem particularly upset with the cop's pronouncement unlike Saul who was glowered. "Don't worry about Mary. You'll come to see she is a fine woman. Think about this, though. I could arrange for you to become Chief when the time comes. You could protect the Troubled and help them the way they should be, without having to hide from people like Reverend Driscoll and his ilk. Together we could make Haven a better place."

"If you want to make Haven a better place, stop killing the children," Nathan countered.

Abe merely dismissed his words with a wave of the hand. "If my plan works, Nathan, that is exactly what will happen."

"Father, he's here," Saul announced. Nathan strained to listen, knowing his hearing was sharper than most but heard nothing.

Abe nodded in acknowledgement but didn't seem concerned in the least. "I know. I sensed him some time ago."

Abe directed his next comments to Saul and Tricia. "Stay here with them while I deal with our troublesome friend. Then we'll finish this."

Saul grudgingly accepted his father's order while Tricia assured him she would do as he said as she gave him a quick hug. Abe quickly tramped up the stairs.

Saul openly glared at Nathan. "You're not worthy."

"Hush, Saul. You heard Father," Tricia admonished her future husband.

"He's not your father either," Saul snapped furiously. Tricia didn't seem to care in the least that Saul obviously hated her.

"We're all family, Saul. Father will show you." She gave Saul a promising smile.

Saul seemed to growl at that and stomped up the stairs. A moment later the door to the cellar prison closed with a loud thump and Saul could be heard to stomp out of the cabin angrily. Tricia just gave Nathan a shrug and smiled at him as she went over and stroked Kenny's head, causing the boy to whimper in fear.