Season One – Episode 2 “Mortal Crimes”

Production Notes:

Started: 2/02/2011 (6:00PM EST)

“Air Date” 3/22/2011 (3:00AM EST)

Published by: Abyssalbooks

www.abyssalbooks.com

Copyright ©2011

All Rights Reserved

Disclaimer

This series is a work of fiction. Characters, names and incidences are either productions of the authors imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.

Mortal Crimes

Chapter One

Bastard Stole My Suit!!!

Nero didn’t yet know what would happen if he allowed twenty second year med-students to start digging knives into him. Immortal or not, he felt that there would probably be major problems if he left the morgue without some of his undead parts. As a mortal, he had been told on more than one occasion that he had no heart. He was in no hurry to make this literal. The hospital staff had been alerting security every few minutes about a naked man that ran out of the morgue and vanished into an office. Nero had already turned to mist and traveled his way to the laundry rooms a few floors above the crowed of dumbfounded and shocked medical students that were dying to cut him into little tiny pieces. He had found just what he was looking for. A lackluster, boring, every day set of cheapass dismal blue threads in an unopened surplus plastic pouch. Streaking naked in front of twenty students, a pathologist, and stealing a doctors scrubs will probably be the easiest set of things I do today. Nero thought to himself while slipping his plain built body into the disgraceful getup.

Nero stepped out of the doctors office via unlocking the door from the inside since he had no more aspirations of returning to mist form for the rest of the night. With any luck, he felt he might be able to pick up his favorite cheap-suit and get out of the hospital without running into any more problems. He walked out into the hallway and easily glided through the doctors and patients in the hallways of the hospital until he found a familiar door. Inside was his suit! On a doctor! It was a perfect fit for him!

Chapter Two

Released

Jordan woke up in the hospital bed to find Anna sitting over her bed. Their eyes locked on one another. Anna would have held her hand but it was bandaged due to the fact that she grabbed a cactus earlier.

“How are you feeling?”

“Good,” Jordan blinked and looked around, realizing where she was for the first time. “Why am I at a hospital? What’s going on?”

Anna smiled and leaned down; she kissed Jordan on the forehead – part happy that poor Jordan didn’t know much about what she had to do to escape the man that broke into their apartment.

“Someone broke in but you managed to get away. It doesn’t matter. You’re safe now.”

The police cruiser kept tight on the car as it raced through the city streets. The water arced from drainage ditches like dark black bullets that dissipated to mist before it could meet the asphalt and sidewalk. Shining lights reflected off of shop windows in the night as the two officers reached near-weightless moments with every light bump in the road careening them through the air. Shock absorbers sent the car swaying like a rocking boat as they perused. The young officer called out to the driver through the microphone in the car once more, desperately trying to find the right words to reach the maniac.

“If you stop now, we won’t site you for resisting arrest! Stop the car!” His uneven voice cracked in a tone unfamiliar to him – fear underlined his pleas for both the driver and the kidnaped girl he had taken with him.

David stopped the car. He was a young officer with little experience but something about him made even his more seasoned partner that looked up to him realize something about the man that was unique to even someone his age. His jawbone tensed for a moment as he pulled off onto the sidewalk.

“What are you doing?” Alex asked.

“I’m not going to let them kill each other by forcing them to do a hundred plus down West 50th. We’re going to kill more people that way.” David said while reaching for his computer and grabbed the microphone from Alex.

“I need a block at West 50th Street and 8th avenue. Have officers checking anyone entering the subway.” He said while pulling back out of the sidewalk and sounding the sirens.

Two cruisers with their lights blocked the mans way. He pushed the girl out of the car after sliding his Toyota Celica to a stop. She wasted no time running for her life as the tires skidded behind her and the car careened toward the only marked car speeding back toward it.

“Holy shit!” Alex said while holding his hands onto the dash board of the passenger seat.

“What the hell is he doing? Jousting?”

“He let her out of the car! He let her out of the car on 8th!” Came a call over the radio from the men blocking the way.

David tried to stop the car when he realized the headlights were not moving away from them. David slammed the breaks but the car began to hydroplane in its haste. The impact activated all the air bags in their car, pushing the police officers into the dashboard air-bags as the Celica sent their car spinning like a top. The Celica took flight and inserted itself into a lounge restaurant via the side of a central parking system parking garage wall. The police cruiser toppled over and landed upside-down in front of a theater, skidding to a stop in front of club eighty-three.

“David, you dead?” Alex asked.

“Not yet.”

“What just happened?”

“We were involved in a traffic collision, Alex.”

The police cars that originally spent their time blocking the street ahead of them pulled in and the officers helped them out of the busted vehicle. David and Alex limped over to where the Celica had crashed only to find it empty.

David reached in and pulled a handful of clothes from the drivers seat of the destroyed car.

“APB on an injured naked man?”

David sighed at Alex’s comment.

Nero’s curiosity got the best of him. He was in scrubs anyway so there really wasn’t a reason not to figure out why detective McKinzie’s child ended up in the hospital. Apparently something that required their attention managed to pry the mother away for a while. Nero stepped into the room and looked down at Jordan. Jordan was wide awake and visibly suffering from mild to dull pain. He remembered Anna from when he was a beat cop. At the time he was on the force, Anna was a sergeant beat cop, too. She had transferred from somewhere else and was desperately attempting to take the detectives course so that she could get into more interesting things. She was quite the go-getter. He never suspected that Anna had a child; she never talked about it as far as he could remember. He had to see this.

“Doctor?” Jordan asked. Nero took a moment to smile down at her. He could tell by the way she was laying in bed that she was probably the tomboy every parent worried was a lesbian. She put her arms out to her side to lean up on her elbows, her legs were a bit wider apart on the bed under the sheets in the way that a man may have put them in preparation to get up and out of bed – not in the prim proper way that a woman would probably put them together and swing them over the edge. Her voice wasn’t the voice of a victim. He could tell there and now that she was always ready for a fight. He assumed that, whatever had happened to her, that was the reason why she was still alive.

“Jordan McKinzie right?” Nero asked as he leaned back and pulled the chart from the foot of her bed. “I’m Doctor White. I was just checking in on you for the other doctor. How are you feeling?” He asked in an exuberant happy tone.

“Like I want to get out of here.”

“I know, Jordan… No one wants to stay here too long. I tell you what. If you promise me not to leave the hospital until your mother comes back, I’ll try and find something for you to wear. My locker was broken into today and well, you and I are in the same boat.” He said while looking over her chart.

Jordan McKinzie

Legal Guardian: Anna McKinzie

Height: 5’0″ Tall

Weight: 90 lbs

Hair: Blonde

Eye Color: Blue

Age: 13

DOB: October 14, 1997

Pre-Admit-Medications: None

Current Medications – Local Painkillers – No IV

History:

Admitted for laceration of the hand from a cactus and blunt force trauma to the forehead. No concussion – minor injuries. On hold for questioning by the NYPD. No flight risk

Nero looked up at Jordan and smiled.

“Want to know something neat?” He asked.

“Sure,” Jordan replied. “I didn’t know doctors could have long hair,” she commented.

“Well,” Nero smiled. “Once you gain enough knowledge and have enough people look up to you, you can sort of get away with things. Not that I have a lot of people looking up to me. But hey… You were born on the same date of the year that the sound barrier was first broken.”

Jordan’s eyes lit up and she smiled, “Oh cool!”

“Yeah! Cool..” Nero smiled and sat down in the chair across from her.

“You’re the nicest doctor around aren’t you? All the others are too busy to sit down.” Jordan commented. She scooted her skinny framed body up so that she was sitting directly under the florescent light that emitted down upon the bed.

“Yeah, well us doctors have to rest too.” Nero said. The more he lied to this girl the more guilty he felt for doing it. “What do you do for fun?”

“Basketball!” Jordan exclaimed happily. “I used to do rafting and skiing but there’s no place to do all that in New York.” She sighed. “I miss being able to roam around and explore.”

“When you’re all better, I’m sure you’ll be able to get back to doing all that at some time.” Nero said. “Just sit tight and I’ll get you something to wear okay?” Nero knew this would make a total dent in his night. First off, he’d have to drive back to his apartment, grab some money out of the safe, and then drive back to a clothing store that’s still open at this hour. By the time he was done with all of that, he’d have less than four hours of safe nighttime to continue his investigation. In a way, he probably felt that it was his way of punishing himself for his curiosity. It was his mortal curiosity that got him interested in Jordan. If he were still a cop, and still human, this would have been the time to confront Anna and say something along the lines of:

“Oh wow! You had a child?! You seemed so uninterested in men I wouldn’t have thought that was possible!”

Nero assumed that even then, he’d get slapped for such a comment but that was Anna… She was no-nonsense and always the perfectionist. He was so sure that, that cop was a lesbian, the thought of her having a child was nearly unthinkable! Yet, here she was… Jordan McKinzie – proof that Detective Anna McKinzie was normal after all. It was worth losing a chunk of his night to honoring nine years of misunderstanding; it was an exciting discovery.

“My father lost custody of me,” Jordan said.

“Ah – I’m sorry.”

“I love them both. I don’t know why they can’t get along.”

“Sometimes… People fall out of love,” Nero said. Jordan could see that Nero was thinking about something in particular when he said that.

“I think that the love is still there. It’s never lost, just misplaced.” Jordan retorted kindly. Nero smiled at that. It seemed as if she gave him some sort of hope when she said it.

“What’s going on in there, Doctor White?” Jordan tapped her forehead and smiled kindly.

“Oh – I’ve lost someone I loved too. I hope the love is still there with us as well.” Nero sighed and breathed in. “Well… I better get going if I’m going to buy you a present.” He got up but Jordan reached out and grabbed his wrist before he could walk away. Nero looked down at Jordan’s blue eyes.

“What?”

“No dresses please.. Bluejeans or something?”

“Sure, Jordan…” Nero said. “Just do me a favor okay?”

“What?”

“Don’t tell anyone a doctor came in here to do this for you okay? I’m sort of – breaking protocol and some rules to do this.” Nero stated.

Jordan pinched her bandaged fingers together and ran them across her lips and did a flicking motion like getting rid of a key. It was cute and made Nero laugh. He also knew that she understood. In a way, he was breaking protocol, but not doctors protocol. Helping a relative of someone he knew in mortal life was generally frowned upon in the Vampiric Society.

Back on Eighth Street, Zak and Anna stepped out of their car and walked toward two police officers sitting on the back of an ambulance.

“I’m Detective McKinzie, this is Detective Jones. Looks like you guys had a tough night.” Anna said while looking at the wrecked cars being pulled out of two separate buildings on opposite sides of the street.

“No one got killed,” Alex said while holding an ice pack to his head. “Or so we think. Not unless that crash on his end killed him so good that he disintegrated or something.”

David rolled his eyes and leaned over his dark blue pants, shaking his head like he wished his partner didn’t bring that up.

“Disintegrated?” Zak asked while pulling out a voice recorder from his pocket. It was one of those nifty new toys from radio shack that kept him from hurting his wrist with a pad and pen. “Please, explain.”

“You two are homicide, right?” David asked.

“Yes?” Zak responded.

“So I guess the guy we were after was connected to all that mess?”

Zak nodded and didn’t say anything. It was almost a dead end if it were not for the girl that the murder let live. Anna pulled a recorder from her pocket and began recording her statement beside the bank.

“He had fangs,” was the first thing she said. Anna did everything she could to not roll her eyes in front of her.

“Miss, have you been doing any drugs tonight?” It was the only thing Anna could say besides you’re freaking crazy that she could think about. She had a long night, her daughter was hospitalized, and she was ready to call it a night. She was also concerned with how her daughter was taking what had happened. Not only was she almost raped, but she killed the man that attempted it. I haven’t even killed anyone yet. I can’t imagine what it must be like. Anna kept thinking about her poor daughters situation as this woman conveyed her strange unbelievable story to her – a story which only the recorder Anna was holding was really listening to.

“… and then he came at me and pulled me into the car. He was so strong… I wouldn’t have been alive by now if the police officers didn’t stop him!” the girl said. She looked to Anna and shook at her. “Are you even listening to me?!”

“Yes,” Anna said. “Sorry… You stated your name right?”

The girl shook her head at her in disgust, “I’m out of here…”

“Wait!” Zak said. He walked across the taped off street and handed her a card. “If you remember anything or wish to tell us more about this later, please call me. I know it’s been a rough night on you. Thank you for your help.”

“Thank you.” The girl said with a sniffle as she walked away.

Zak walked to his field trainer and partner, Anna and saw that she was sidetracked. He put a hand on her shoulder.

“You know, I think we can call it a night. I’m going to take a cruiser down to the station and get started on the reports for the night. If you want me to take that recorder from you, and your witness papers, I’ll do the paperwork. You go home. Tell Jordan I’ll check in on her as soon as I get back – if that’s okay with you?”

“You’re a good friend, Zak.” She said. “Just knock lightly when you come back okay? If we’re awake, I’ll let you in.”

“Alright.”

Zak smiled as he watched Anna get back into her car and drive away.

Nero sighed and leaned back in his chair. The Sanctum was something out of a horror novel to him. It looked exactly like Dracula’s Castle aside from the fact that

(Insert part from Desktop PC here ^ )

Nero checked on Jordan. He didn’t much care for half of what the council told him. As a police officer, one of his standout qualities was the ability to find loopholes in policies and procedures that technically kept him out of trouble while at the same time; getting himself what he wanted. To him, Jordan was not only a young girl in need of help, but she was a miracle. If he had known that Anna wasn’t a lesbian, he would have been offering himself in any way that he could to his co-worker back when he was human. Now, here he was, separated from Humanity, and there she was – the fruit of Anna’s loins, which meant that Anna herself was not defined under the dating category of where no one has gone before. He always thought that it was, but as he mentioned in his inner mind before, Jordan was certainly living proof that everyone in the police department had been wrong.

Jordan was asleep while Nero walked into the room with a few pairs of clothes that she could walk out with. The IV Drip was still going into her veins. . He supposed it was just a precaution to keep the hospital from being sued by ungrateful little punks that would do anything to suck the government’s money back into their pockets at the expense of honest people that spend eight years learning how to mend the human body. He briefly flashed back to a few hours ago when he was about to get dissected alive by a group of second or third year medical students. That was probably strike one for him. Strike two was inserting a small portion of his blood into Jordan’s IV tube. This wouldn’t turn her by any means, but it would protect her existence somewhat. It took some kind of special bad luck for a fourteen year old to find her way to the top of a mob family’s hit list. Nero watched as she shuddered.

Jordan opened her eyes and gasped. The pupils turned a bright as if fire were behind her blue eyes and she grabbed the bed sheets as she woke up and looked to Nero. He remembered the feeling. It was like riding the waves of pure enjoyment and comfort all at the same time. The bruises on her face went away in an instant and he was certain that the bandages on her hand didn’t need to be there. As long as the doctors didn’t have any need to check her bandaged hand, he’d be in the clear for a while. He knew that having the blood of a vampire in her system would only last so long before she would need another dose; not that she was addicted, however, he was sure that the body would metabolize the effects of coming back from death over time. He didn’t’ wish vampirism upon the young girl, but it was certainly better than a bullet proof vest. Besides, Nero knew that if she did end up as a member of the undead, Anna would eventually kill him – a second time.

“What was that?!” Her voice seemed reluctant to continue through her question.
“Not quite sure, but it looked like – you had a good dream or something? Hey, I brought you those clothes you wanted. I’m sure your mother will be by to pick you up soon. Unfortunately, I’m off shift now so, it was nice meeting you kid. Stay out of trouble and the hospital alright? And always listen to your mother, Kay?” His voice was so cheerful that, despite Jordan’s unrelenting urge to hit him over the head with a crash cart for being so responsible sounding, she chose to let it go because he had been so nice to her.

Her mind then trailed off to the term crash cart. Why would they call it a crash cart if it wasn’t eventually made to crash into something? Or was it maybe because crash carts were often used on people that crashed their cars? She quickly quit thinking and smiled at Nero.

“Alright, I promise.”

Nero kept his smile and walked off. He hoped he would get a chance to meet Anna again but then Jordan would eventually find out that Nero wasn’t really a doctor. If there were any chance of any of them seeing him again, he knew that it would be for some sort of bad news.

Jordan found it easy to get up. Wow, all I needed was a good nap just like the nurse said. She thought to herself as she picked up the clothes. They looked as if they were exactly what she had wanted. She hoped that she would run into that nice doctor again so that she could get her mother to pay for a set of clothes that were probably extremely expensive. She took the clothes, along with a purse with a note on it that said that other required clothing materials are within. She laughed at that and took a lucky guess at what that meant. By the time Anna came to collect her for the night, she was in style, or at least, in as much style that a brand-named tomboyish girl could be in.

“You’re feeling better?!” Anna asked as she walked in with a few doctors. If Jordan had longer hair she would have let it flow over her face to hide the embarrassment. It wasn’t the embarrassment of being caught in nice clothes, but the purse – it was totally not ‘her’. Jordan let out a shy giggle as she explained about the doctor and that the nap got rid of the bruises on her face. Anna couldn’t believe that she looked so good after such a bad ordeal but she was relieved to see her up and about. For some reason, ever since her last time seeing the doctor, Jordan felt her guilt about hurting the mob-man, had nearly completely subsided; she felt like her old self again. It was a release to not have such a horrifying trauma scarred into her memories; the memories were still there but it didn’t bother her. And it was great to see her mother. She felt totally safe again now that they were together. She ran and jumped into Anna’s arms. Her mother broke down and held her so tight as if she were afraid she might drop her.

Anthony and Tony were already waiting outside the apartment complex with a view to the room that Anthony’s brother attempted to sneak into. All he needed to know was who lived there. He knew enough from the news to know that it was the little girl. They watched as a young woman, followed by a young girl with bandages around her hand trailed behind the other woman with her un-hurt hand in the mothers. Anthony’s foot nearly tapped the floorboard of the car so loud that Anna could have heard it from half a block away when he saw them enter the apartment that got broken into.

“She’s just a little kid, Anthony.” Tony said. He had a big problem with it ever since he realized it was probably just an accident. “Either way boss, she was defending herself.”

Anthony felt his hand tighten hard around the grip of the gun. He didn’t want to explain it to him anymore and if that meant firing a couple of rounds into the dashboard of the car to get his point across, then, that’s what he’d have to do. Luckily, Anthony shut up before he would have to display what he wanted to do to the little kid by pretending she was the glove compartment.

Anna almost cried again as she entered the apartment. She saw the stress marks by the main door which now needed a replacement door jam, and when they advanced forward past the overturned furniture, Jordan’s bedroom door was splintered and only a partial half of it was still on it’s hinges. Jordan reached out and held Anna’s arm for a minute. Once the courage was built up, Jordan advanced to her room and began to clean things up. She picked up the overturned box of books first and began inserting them back into the box. Jordan couldn’t help but feel energetic and she didn’t know why. She had her room cleaned up and the door replaced with a garbage bag drape within minutes.

“The police are saying that this person had mob connections so no basketball unless you’re out with Zak okay?”

Jordan sighed and didn’t say anything. Her mother walked through the garbage bag that was supposed to Jordan her privacy and held her hands on her hips.

“Did you hear what I said?” Anna asked.

“Yes, mom.” Jordan flopped onto the bed and scratched her ear length straight blonde hair as she looked up at her mother. She had that classic my life is ruined look down to a science and she didn’t hesitate to use it.

“Are you okay?” Anna asked.

Jordan leaned back on her bed and pulled one skinny stick leg over the other. Anna noticed that her Jeans were brand-name. She decided to ignore that, but she wanted an answer out of her wafer thin tomboy of a daughter before she walked out of the room.

“Yeah, I am actually.” Jordan was surprised to say it. She didn’t feel much guilt from killing the man as she did when she first woke up in the hospital; she didn’t feel much pain in her hand from wrapping it around a cactus either. She started to unwind the bandages around her hand as she talked.

“I can’t imagine how that must have felt.”

“I was scared,” Jordan said. “I wasn’t really thinking about much else.”

Anna stepped to the bed and hugged her a moment before her phone rang.

“Yes,” She said. “I’m done for the night. I’m sorry. We’ve just had a…”

Jordan sighed as she listened to one side of the conversation, she knew what would probably be coming next. “… Alright. Give me twenty minutes.” She hung up the phone and looked to Jordan with a sad expression. “I’m so sorry, I need to –,”

“It’s okay mom.. I’ll be alright.”

Anna smiled. “Okay sweetie… But you’re coming with me.”

Jordan sighed and shook her head, “No! Mom, I want to rest. I don’t want to ride around in the back of your car all night like last time.” She stated. Last time she went on a last minute run with her mother, she ended up staying in the back seat of the car until sunrise because there was a break in the case and no one, not even Zak, could give her a ride back to the house. This was where she made her stand. “.. Besides, it’s not like there’s going to be another break in during the same night. I’m going to be alright.”

At the station, officer Chrissy Richards nervously put down the phone and put the other phone to her ear. She purposely kept as far away from Zak as possible as he sat at his desk doing reports on their investigation.

“It’s done,” Chrissy said.

“Good. Come to the parking lot at noon tomorrow and you’ll get paid.”

The phone hung up.

Chapter Three

Panic

Jordan slipped into the bathtub and carefully started pulling the bandage off of her arm. The only thing she had on were a pair of I-Pod earphones that successfully masked the sound of the door getting picked again as she observed the hand that was supposed to have multiple lacerations. Just as her eyes were about to go wide with surprise, a fat, heavyset Italian stormed into the bathroom and grabbed her neck. She kicked and tried to scream under the water as Anthony used it as his weapon of choice. He was fully prepared to shoot her full of holes but the situation was perfect for him. The kicking and thrashing was all over in moments. To Jordan, the panic drifted away as a tunnel took over her vision and faded to black. Tony, the thin Italian Mobster raked his hands through his hair in reaction to what Anthony had done. She was so young and innocent. Tony ran his hands through his hair and looked to someone that he used to call a friend and contemplated the level of evil he represented as he stood over the young corpse in the tub. The fact that he was speechless was probably the only thing that kept him safe at that moment.

“Come on, we got to get out of here,” Tony suggested after catching his breath. He had been holding it for almost as long as Jordan had been under water. Anthony pulled out his video camera and made sure to capture the evidence to his father that proper retribution had been delivered. Tony tried not to gawk at the fact that this man seemed to be enjoying what he had done.

Anna stepped into the precinct. She was still strapping her gun holster to her belt by the time she made it to her floor and walked into the florescent lit room filled with desks, ringing phones, uniformed officers, and late-night detectives. She worked up a tired smile as she approached Zak.

“You seem to be fitting in well as a detective.” Anna stepped to the desk and leaned against the cheap particle board surface. Zak seemed surprised that she was there because he stood up from his chair and blinked at her with wide oval eyes that seemed to scream what the hell?

“Well?” Anna asked. “What did you need that was so important?”

“I think you must be mistaken. I didn’t call you. I told you I was going to take care of everything for the night.”

“What?” Anna’s brow raised as she looked around and then back to Zak. “I don’t understand. Someone called me and told me to come here.”

“Someone was pullin’ your leg hotness.” Zak affirmed.

“Dammit.. Probably just a mistake. Well, since I’m here…”

Zak nodded and sat back down at his computer screen. It had been almost four hours since he assumed he would be home and his lack of sleep was catching up with him. It was apparent because he kept stretching and yawning as he sifted through files on his hard drive that he unloaded off of his ipad.

“So far, no witnesses, no further murders, nothing… No fingerprints, no forensic evidence to suggest someone broke into our victims house with a forklift…” He trailed off and yawned. “But, aside from a complaint to the captain about lack of sleep, all the paperwork is filed.”

Anna patted him on the back and was about ready to kindly tell him to go home but two of the other detectives that met with Anna at the hospital came running for her. Anna turned around in reaction to the hasty footsteps.

“Anna! Where’s Jordan?!” The tall Hispanic detective asked.

“At home, why?”

“We got an I.D on the suspect that Jordan killed. One of the DeSoto brothers…”

Anna swallowed hard and breathed in sharply. Zak likewise had his coat on at the moment the news traveled to his ears.

“Come on, we got to get going. Come with us guys, get any uniforms in the area of Anna’s house to get up there right away.” Zak said as he helped Anna up by her arm. Once he got some speed, Anna quickly took over the pace. The four detectives gathered in the elevator as they wished it could have an emergency speed.

Morning was nearly upon Nero. He had wanted to visit a particular nightclub before the night was over in order to break more rules handed down to him by The Sanctum but part of being a Vampire was the fact that he simply couldn’t stay awake very much with the sun up. More or less he was out of it of he caught a glimpse of sunlight; worse off, if direct sunlight touched him, he’d be fried. So it was off to the condo for him. He walked up to his room and slid his keycard across the door to open it. Once inside, he checked his surroundings for intruders and fell asleep at the crack of dawn. The only thing that prevented him from doing that was a knock at the door. Nero sighed and got back up to see who could be standing in the way of him and utter exhaustion. He opened the door to see Pedro Revera, a short spiky hared muscle building crack dealer from South America.

“Pedro, what brings you to this nick of the woods? Decided to let me chop your head off after realizing you were a sorry excuse for a human being?” Nero asked.

“You’re such a dick.” Pedro said. “I was stuck in a rave downtown and there was no place else to go. You got to let me in. It’s part of the sanctum man…”

Nero laughed at this man. “You peddled coke to kids and you expect me to let you in so you can survive? Go screw yourself. You’re not invited.” Nero slammed the door shut in his face.

“I’m going to tell the enforcers!”

“Go ahead! Tell them if you get the chance. I recommend finding a nice cardboard box, or a dumpster maybe.” Nero laughed through the door. He knew that Pedro would eventually find a safe place to sleep before the sun got to him but the thought of this rich upscale crack dealer having to ruin his suit and kill his ego by sleeping in a dumpster all day really made Nero’s day.

Jordan rolled out of the tub and breathed out as much as she could. She felt the water squeezing out of her lungs as she squeezed her abdomen. Drowning was the most horrifying experience she had ever been through. And that’s why her body felt it was more a dream than reality. After a minute of coughing, she lie on the tile floor resting. For some reason, she was extremely tired. She skipped the pj’s and slipped straight into bed — she felt that her drowning was nothing but a dream. When the police arrived, Jordan was motionless on the bed and pale white – and not breathing. Officer Rick Charles, a young rookie was being hounded over his IP-radio to report the situation to him. Rick placed two fingers to Jordan’s twig of a neck and checked for a pulse. He sighed with sadness when he keyed in detective Zak Jones’ I’d number and clicked the mic.

“Ahhh!!”

In the car, Anna looked to Zak as he drove at breakneck speeds with the emergency lights on.

“Officer, are you alright?! What’s going on?” Anna was quick to grab the radio from Zak; as if she felt that physically holding the radio would help change the course of events.

“Yeah.. Jordan is alright – she was just sleeping.”

Zak and Anna both looked as if someone had released the weight of the world from their backs.

“Stay with her. Don’t let her out of your sight.

”What are you doing in my room?!” Jordan asked. She quickly pulled the sheets over her and added “… You pervert in a uniform! Just because you are a cop doesn’t give you the rights to take a gander with women in their own bedrooms!” Her voice was loud and unusually high pitched. Officer Charles didn’t take into account she was in her birthday suit until she proved she wasn’t a corpse. After she moved, complained, and covered a frame too slender for anyone to even notice, he realized it was alive…

“Are you sure you’re okay? You’re a little pale.”

“Probably because you scared the shit out of me.” Jordan said accusingly toward a person that was in fact, still scaring her a little. After the bad dream she felt that she had, combined with some stranger seeing her sleeping in the nude — it was, in her book – a creepy night. Something else occurred to her as she sat against the headboard with the sheets drawn toward her chin.

“Do me a favor?” Jordan asked.

“Uh, what?” Asked the young officer that seemed to be looking away from her at all times.

“I normally don’t sleep like this. I was just so tired that I didn’t even bother to – you know,” he nodded toward the bathroom door, which had her PJ’s hanging off of the corner.

“Your secret is safe with me,” the officer said. “If you want to put something on before Detective McKinzie gets here –.”

Jordan nodded and got up with the sheets wrapped around her. After the initial moment of horror caused by the young officer, she finally gave him a look over. Her lips straightened out in a semi-smile as her eyes trailed the slender, fit man. She stood there a moment.

“Do you do any sports?”

“Uh, yeah. I like baseball and…”

“What about basketball?”

“I don’t mind,” The officer said while noticing Jordan’s body language. She advanced on him slightly which now made him more uncomfortable. She looked like a blonde toga-girl that he could have arrested an entire frat party over. He was too proper to even think about what she probably had in mind. He wasn’t even swayed.

“Not interested.. Get your clothes on before I tell your mother,” He said sternly. Jordan breathed in sharply as if she had been caught with her hand in the cookie jar and quickly vanished into the bathroom.

Anna and Zak rushed into the apartment and met with the young officer who looked after her.

“Oh thank god. Thank you for getting here so fast,” Anna said. She looked to see Jordan. Her eyes were darker and her skin was pale. “Anna..” She hugged her. “We found out that the man that died was a mob leader’s son. We need to find a different place to stay for a while to make sure that no one is after you.”

Jordan sighed and straightened her new shirt that the doctor had given her at the hospital; it was a blue buttoned up shirt with short sleeves. She chose to wear a set of baggy black pants cut off at the knee and as usual, she put on a backwards NYC hat that she had fallen in love with the moment she arrived to the city. She could have passed for a young boy. Anna sometimes wondered if her daughter was going to end up lesbian but she never asked. She could sometimes do some very girly things which gave her hope — things like what she was doing at that moment.

“Mom! What does this mean? Do I have to re-pack all my stuff or is this just temporary?” She nearly hissed in protest.

Anna rolled her eyes and grabbed her girl by the arm and knelt down.

“Jordan! You can’t stay here anymore. I know that this is hard on you. It’s not fair, I understand but you couldn’t help that you killed a mob boss’s son! If you didn’t do what you did, you would probably be dead and I would have lost my daughter!!” Anna looked into Jordan’s eyes as if searching for some hint of understanding while a tear found it’s way down her cheek. Jordan reached out and wiped it away; she nodded.

“Sorry mom,” Jordan reached out and hugged her. Zak took the prying eyes away from them by talking with Officer Charles.

“Just get whatever books you need and we’ll take you out of school for a few days until we can investigate further, alright?”

Jordan nodded. “Can I at least stay home tonight? I’m feeling sick. I don’t know if I can handle a car ride.”

“No!” Anna said. “We’re going. Get what you need. I don’t want to risk losing you ever again. I love you.”

Jordan instinctively grabbed a hoodie. She didn’t know why, but she knew she would need it.

Chapter Four

The Next Night

Anthony laughed with his father as he explained, in intricate detail, the killing of Jordan McKinzie. Tony tried his best to seem enthusiastic about their revenge story. He hoped that their boss would perhaps say a few kind words at the least, but he was just as delighted to hear about his son’s avenged death as Anthony. He excused himself from the table and of course, that was considered dishonorable to both Anthony and his father. He never realized that it would be one of them that would kill him one day. It was either the bullet from Anthony’s gun or his fathers but he never got to figure that out before he hit the floor dead.

Anthony didn’t feel too sorry about Tony. In his family, showing that kind of disrespect was fatal. Even if he didn’t like what his father had done, he still stuck around to eat the meal and pretend to laugh about whatever it was they found satisfaction in. That was the duty of being in the mob, especially one of the most well-off mob’s in New York. Another part of respect was making sure you do what you were told to do. So one could only imagine the fear of receiving a phone call after dinner from a police detective stating that Anna McKinzie was back at work – business as usual.

“What are you talking about? She’s in her office smiling and fucking laughing?! Are you sure that’s Anna McKinzie?” Anthony asked as he sat on the steps in front of their family restaurant. He looked over his shoulders to make sure that none of the family were around him and continued. “You get close to her, you hear? Find out what she knows and get back to me.”

Chrissy was terrified. She had already accepted money from them so now, any favor asked from them wasn’t exactly a favor; it was a requirement. She didn’t even bother to ask what was in it for her to find out. She heard a click at the other end and checked her pre-paid Go-Phone to make sure that it was he who hung up on her instead of the other way around. She would have been terrified to have accidently hung up on him. She felt that the situation was worse than when she posed as a street hooker to arrest criminals with a hard-on. She took a deep breath and pocketed her phone before walking up to Anna who was sitting on Zak’s desk going over some sort of information on their IPad’s.

“Anna, Zak…” Chrissy put on her best smile and gave Zak a little wink. Zak never knew that Chrissy had a thing for him but he went along with it.

“Sup?” Zak said.

“Long time no talk,” Anna said. She had remembered her as a uniformed officer from a couple of years ago. She seemed decent enough if not a little secretive about her days off. When other officers gathered for a party, Chrissy was one of those girls that never attended.

“Any luck on the rooftop killings?” That’s what they were calling it so it was the same case that Chrissy was referring to.

“Nothing yet. We printed the car and came up with nothing. Only, crazy-girl that as kidnaped by this guy claimed that he wasn’t wearing gloves. Bullshit, man.” Zak said.

“How are things at home?” She turned to Anna and shrugged her shoulders. Anna blinked and raised her eyebrow.

“A mobster tried to rape my daughter,” Anna couldn’t help but reply the obvious; everyone in the department should have known it so she delivered her l in a news flash.. Dingdingding.. Sort of fashion. Chrissy sighed at that and shook her head.

“I’m sorry. I just wanted to catch up. I was having an off-day.” She brushed her hand across her forehead and feigned tired. Anna patted Chrissy on the shoulder.

“I know what those days are like. Don’t worry; a few hours sleep will help get you by. Your shift is almost over?”

“Yeah,” Chrissy smiled. “Can’t wait. Hey, Let’s catch up sometime.”

“Me too?” Zak asked.

“Of course!” Chrissy winked at him again and walked off in a sway. Zak looked down and bit his bottom lip.

“M-mm” He shook his head like a dong trying to take a chew toy out of his owners hand. This, of course, got him slapped over the back of the head lightly.

“Keep it in your pants,” Anna said. They both smiled and went back to their I-Pad’s.

Nero finally got the chance to enter the nightclub. Myst and smoke filled the air along with the rich undertoned sounds of slow Goth. music. It was an interesting mixture not seen very often in many clubs. Nero came to once again try and get the one mortal in his life aside from Anna that he cared for, away from danger. He spotted Pedro Rivera playing away on his multi-thousand dollar techno-mixer machine that he planned on using later in the night when the venue changed from Goth. to Techno/House; Nero wondered how Pedro spend the day. He wanted to ask Pedro if he spent all of his time in a dumpster but sadly enough, he’d probably be thrown out of the club because of the South American punks connections. One of his friends happened to be dating the girl he wanted to see anyway, so that combination already stacked the cards against him and he knew it. Nero found his way across the second floor grated balcony to meet a friend under the employment of the asshole downstairs. He blended in quite well considering his pale complection, bright green eyes, and a suit that he decided he’d have taylor-made for a change. No one would have thought he was a cop, he looked too rich; this was despite the fact that some people knew him from when he raided the place — his friend included. He knocked on the door and opened it.

“Jaime Jaime! Look who just snuck in!” Nero put on his best boyish grin that was known for getting him occupied nightly on more than one occasion.

Jaime Jax, or, DJ JJ as she was more affectionately known, was a tall skinny brunette. She smiled in return, sporting her fangs that were no secret for her since it was part of her routine. It was also routine for her to wear as little as possible. That night she sported what looked to be a tight black bikini bottom, a low cut black shirt with a picture of the jolly roger on it, no piercings, but elaborate temporary tattoos that only another Vampire could tell weren’t real. Nero was sure that before she was turned, she had real tattoos and piercing, but one of the prices one paid for immortality was that the body becomes perfect; any physical imperfections are literally pushed right out or corrected shortly after death. She was a skinny dark haired , pigtailed, Goth. girl with a spunky attitude — oh yes, and a Vampire.

“So,” Nero threw a duffel bag down on the table. “I’ve been to The Sanctum recently and I picked something up for you.”

Jaime turned to him and put her hands on her nearly naked hips. Her lips revealed her fangs as she slowly let loose with a grin.

“Human blood?” She asked.

“None other…” Nero slid the duffel bag in the direction of the blood thirsty spunky DJ. She quickly pulled the clear plastic blood pouch filled with her one and only favorite drink, and put it in a special locked fridge that was more like a combination of both a fridge, and a bank vault. One she safely buried away the blood in the same careful fashion that a dog would make sure a buried bone was safe, she swooped around and hugged Nero.

“You didn’t come here just to give me that, right?” She asked while hugging him above the hips with her bare skinny legs. He sighed and looked around the room she was in to make sure that no one was looking. Jaime’s room was more like a ‘control room’. There were screens everywhere along the top of the ceiling that stretched from corner to corner; each one had either a view of what was being projected along the walls of the club, or security footage of the club-goers themselves. Another large area of her wall had a projected video feed that showed where the other vampires were in the club with heat signature cameras.

The vampires showed in bright white silhouettes on the monitor. Nero raised a brow when looking at the few specs of white outlined dancers there were.

“Not a significant turnout, I see.” He walked across the room and tapped his finger on the monitor that showed her a count of mortals to immortals via the letters “I” and “M”. Jaime pulled at his shoulders to get Nero to turn around.

“Do you always check out every little detail wherever you go? Or are you just making small talk with a friend that you’ve known for nearly two years?”

“I’d like to think that I was observant and not just nervous. Which, I’m not, by the way.” Nero hugged her.

“You’re a shitty liar. I know you’re thinking about her.” She accepted the hug but still had to state her rebuke. Nero sighed and let Jaime walk out of the doorway without another retort. She liked him and that was obvious. Nero remembered joking with his fellow officers back when he was mortal, about how love seemed like a chain; he loved her, but she loved someone else, who loved someone else. No one ever wanted the people that wanted them and the chain continued forever. It seemed, even in undeath, the chain prevailed.

Nero stepped out and back onto the catwalk. It seemed that Pedro had been waiting for him.

“Ah, nice to see you dude. Let’s see how you enjoy where I spent my day.”