And Then There Was One...
"The questions isn't what happened, but what will." a voice called out from the shadows.
"Wait...I know that voice, who are you?" Edward asked out to the source.
"My dear Edward, I'm offended you don't remember." the voice said, Josh stepping out from the shadows.
"Oh good it's you, untie me before that madman gets to me!" Edward said hastily.
"Unfortunately, it's too late, for he is standing before you now." Josh responded with a smirk.
"Wait...you're the alterationist!?" Edward called out in a panic. "Why are you doing all this!?"
"Isn't it obvious though? You see, I had this illustrated since before you even came." Josh begins explaining. "Everyone here is, as I say, a scoundrel. It's merely time that karma caught up to them."
"Sure, some of them are scoundrels, but that doesn't mean they deserve to lose their bodies!" Edward yelled back.
"And yet, they did." Josh replied smugly. "Now they get a brand new start, where they can actually be good samaritans." Josh added.
"But why did you do what you did? Why transform people?" Edward asked in confusion and fear.
"Well, I'm a fan of just deserts, and since you don't have much longer, I'll tell you everything." Josh replied slyly. "Sophie was the first to change because I was the only one that knew her before hand. Take her out of the picture first, I'm the least likely suspect. Of course, her new fin and gills were well deserved." Josh said, pausing to chuckle for a moment. "She bribed and slept her way up to being captain of the swim team."
As Josh began to go on, Edward quietly began to twiddle around with his restraints, hoping to loosen them. "Next was Darren, the quiet and mysterious one, and one thing no one asked was why? Well, he ratted out a lot of people, and made it onto a lot of people's hit lists." he informed. "I figured it was time for him to tell the same thing forever, stop ruining other people's lives, including my own brother's!"
Edward hit something as he found an opening in the knot. He tried to maintain his composure as he tried to undo it. "Then Jessica, housewife to your best friend Bobby. Their marital issues wasn't all Bobby. You see, Jessica wanted to rule everything, run the show. She became a hippo due to the weight she put on other's shoulders."
"Of course you're former master Smith, I think you know why he was such a scoundrel, and he became a dog because it's about time he took orders and was loyal to someone else, so now he's essentially you!" Josh laughed uncontrollably. "Barry joined in on the fun as a bird. All he wanted was to be free from life's tedious obstacles thrown at him all his life, and now he is, quite literally as free as a bird! Barry did a lot of things throughout his life, including sabotage to get to where he was in his career. He's not innocent, he only portrays himself as such."
As Josh went on Edward managed to break out of one of the knots, and began on the other restraint. "And of course there's Bobby, the new vixen. I'll admit my nicest transformation, but for Bobby, it's pure torture. You see, even though they appear gone, the old mind is still there, unable to control anything; a mere observer." Josh explained. "Bobby abused both his wife and animals, quite frequently so. Not exactly right in the head that one. His despise for both woman and animals made me think of the ingenious idea to give him the body of both!"
Edward tried as best he could to undo the other knot without Josh seeing he broke free of one, but was finding it rather difficult to do. "Scott, always late to the party, terrified of it all. I figured I should leave him as one of the last so people would stay to comfort him, something that would be ol' Lizzie's downfall." Josh chucked madly. "A turtle would do him good, he needs to learn about how being slow can have a nasty effect on things, such as MY time in the spotlight, or lack thereof because of him!"
"And of course there's little Lizzie, I left her for last so she'd be easy to turn. All of the people she tried to save from being transformed, it was almost too easy." Josh chuckled. "She did oh so much to others, and tried to hide it by being the leader. Now she's the best hider ever, a chameleon!" Josh begins to lose it more.
Edward finally managed to break free of the restraint's knots, waiting to attack. "And finally you." Josh said looking over to Edward. "The grand finale, my trophy if you will." Josh added going to the piano in the room. "You see, that's exactly what you will become, with this lovely song I picked out just for you." Josh chuckled, as he plays a few random notes.
"That's great, but there's one flaw in your plan." Edward replies with a confident smirk.
"Oh? And what is that?" Josh asked turning to Edward.
"You really aren't good with knots." Edward told Josh as he rips off the rope, charging at Josh. Panicked, Josh began to try and play the first few notes to kickstart the transformation, only to be stopped as Edward tackled him down to the ground. On top of him and much stronger, Edward began to attack Josh. Josh attempted to fight back, to no avail. Edward's berate was to much to overpower. As Josh was weakened, Edward got up and went to the piano. "You want a trophy so bad? Why don't you become one!" Edward looked at the score and began playing random notes to warm up his fingers.
"N-no! Wait!" Josh begged, slowly getting up.
"It's too late for that, you've done things that can't be forgiven. Since you're such a fan of karma, why don't you take some yourself?" Edward said as puts in the ear plugs next to the piano and begins to play the whole song.
"You can't do this to me! I run the show! I planned out the WHOLE thing!" Josh shouted starting to walk over, only to have his feet stop working. Looking down, his shoes were gone and his skin was stone, slowly traveling up his legs. As Josh lost his ability to walk, he could only watch as Edward continued with pure concentration on the song.
"Okay you win! I won't turn you if you stop!" Josh began to sound desperate. By now, his whole lower half had turned to stone, crawling up faster as Edward picked up the tempo.
"P-please stop!" Josh began to cry out in fear. He lost control of his arms and hands as his whole body save for his head was made of stone. "I-I'm..." Josh was stopped as his lips became sealed shut, the last of him turning into stone. As Edward held out the last note, Josh's transformation into a statue concluded.
Edward took out his earplugs and looked over to the petrified Josh. He let out a small scoff. Edward ran his hand down Josh, seeing that he was a statue through and through. "There's your trophy you bastard." he said to himself. He then headed right towards the front door. He unlocked it and opened it. Whatever was keeping everyone locked in must have been something Josh was doing. Now a stone, his magic on it seemed to have stopped working. "Free at last." Edward said to himself as he walked out and closed the door behind him.
The Alterationist had his fun,
He was defeated.
Edward looked around and found a rock on the ground. He picked it up and scratched "Stay Away" onto the door as legible as he could. Edward dropped the rock and began to walk away from the manor. Before leaving the manor grounds, he took one last look back at it and muttered five words to himself.
"And then there was one."