“Who sent you?” Rose said, her voice cold and hard.
He blubbered like a child; blood, snot and tears mixing on his face. “’m sorry!” he said, barely understandable. “Didn’t mean nuthin! I just-”
“Drop the charade. You aren’t fooling anyone.”
With an unsettling abruptness, he ceased crying and looked calmly up at her.
“I asked you a question,” Rose spat, digging the knife into his throat. He didn’t seem to notice.
“May I ask how you knew?” the man asked, his voice cultured, gentle and impeccably polite. “Merely to satisfy my curiosity.”
“I know what people want. I know what people need,” she said. Her face screwed up in disgust. “I’ve seen what it is you need.”
The man smiled, widely.
“I make them beautiful. I sculpt their bodies and paint them with a myriad hues of magnificent sacrlet.”
“I know what it is you do. Now tell me where to find him!”
“He will make you all so beautiful.”
He lunged forward and slit his own throat against the blade.
Even as he died, the gurgling sounded like laughter.