By: B.A. Holland
“Air Date” 9/01/2012
Published by: Abyssal Books
All Rights Reserved
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.
All things truly wicked start from an innocence – Ernest Hemingway
Jordan and Eric spotted the Dodge Charger parked alongside the entrance to Central Park. The kids looked at each other as if they knew they could hide what they’ve done from the detective, or in other words, Jordan’s best friend on earth. They pretended to be in mid-conversation by the time they walked to Zak but he knew a faked blind side when he saw one. There was only one thing on his mind despite the large box of ammo they were carrying with them.
“So… You’re a vampire now, huh?”
The boy cowered behind his girlfriend and hoped she would protect him from the menacingly tall, black detective with a gun. He could see the whites of his eyes from beyond the street but he pretended that he might have been mad about something else. Zak knew what they had done and it showed in his expression.
“Well, you gonna answer me or not? I axed a question!” He then looked to Jordan with a disappointed glance. “I would like to believe this didn’t happen but if you’re telling the truth, then I have some bad news for you regarding the reason I’m so pissed off right now.”
“What are you talking about?” Jordan replied innocently. It didn’t work so much now that she looked like a raven-haired gothic girl instead of the innocent Iowa-Blonde. Zak rolled his eyes and looked her up and down so she knew that she was going to have to at least try and sell it harder. “… I didn’t turn him into a vampire. We think that maybe… When I was fighting that boy in the alley that some of his blood might have gone to his mouth and maybe he had a heart attack in the night?” She added the upward inflection in the form of a question at the end of what she said. It was almost as if she was trying to ask Zak if she had convinced him of her lie yet.
“Yeah… A young, healthy teenager suddenly dies on the same night that he drinks the blood of a vampire.” Zak’s eyes got larger as his mouth seemed like it was on the edge of exploding when finally, “BULLSHIT!” He erupted the explicative upon the youths so violently that his head shook from side to side from the force of the noun. Both kids jumped back a little and looked away with shame written all over their faces.
Jordan’s eyes had a red gloss over them as she her tears began to collect under her eyelids. Her throat constricted and her voice cracked as she asked.
“What are you talking about?”
“You two did the naughty and that’s how he got it, Jordan…” Zak said. He looked to the boy. “Don’t ever lie to me again. You might think you love her but I’ve known her a hell of a lot longer than you have.” Turning to Jordan who was crying at that point, he continued. “This is one big mess. You need to listen to your mother more often.”
The girl looked up to her best friend with a mixture of sadness, shame, and hate all in one expression.
“I could have saved Derrick… But I DID listen to you. And now he’s dead.”
“Don’t put that on me, Jordan… How could you or I have known this would happen.”
“But it did happen…”
The girl turned around and hugged Eric as she cried. The boy had to hand the box over to Zak so that she could get closer. Zak in turn opened the box to keep from seeming rude to the young couple. There were about a hundred rounds of ammunition inside, all with wooden tips instead of metal.
He put the box in his car and turned around to the kids.
“We’ll get into it later,” Zak somberly replied. “Let’s get in the car. It’s almost daylight. We need to get you someplace safe.”
The kids jumped into the back seat of the dodge charger. It had been a long night and they were tired even the Greek guy with spiky hair was already asleep. Apparently, he wasn’t used to staying up all night and sleeping all day but he was getting a head start on adjusting his schedule. Zak slammed the door loudly out of anger and even that didn’t wake the other guy.
“Can you hand me one of your magazines?” Jordan asked. Unlike Anna’s crown victoria, Zak’s vehicle had a clear partition that could be opened or shut in the center. He opened it and handed Jordan the magazine but he didn’t say anything. Jordan knew that she was in for a talking during some point in the day before Zak fell asleep. She wasn’t sure if Eric would get the same treatment but she knew she was in a lot of trouble. At the same time, she thought of Derrick and how he could have been saved in the same way that she saved Eric despite the fact she only knew the Goth boy for a short while. She rewound the past in her mind as she replaced the regular 9mm bullets in the magazine with wooden-tipped ones.
Zak reached over to Yannis and pulled his sidearm half out but at that point the Greek man opened his eyes and slammed his pistol back in his holster.
“What are you doing?” Yannis fixated on the NYPD detective that tried to take his gun.
“I need you to give the gun to the girl in the back.”
Yannis turned around and raised an eyebrow at the young girl. He then looked back to Zak.
“You want me to give a little girl my gun?!” Yannis asked. He turned to look at the pale dark haired girl. “How old are you?”
“You don’t’ want to know. It conflicts with my capabilities and – adult–ness…” Jordan faked a big smile and squinted her eyes. “Trust me!” She chirped.
“Just give her the damn gun,” Zak said.
“Hey! Don’t talk to me like that. I have rules and regulations I follow and I’m pretty sure somewhere in that book, it says not to give your fucking gun to a fourteen year old girl!”
“She’s dead, Yannis… She doesn’t count.”
“Dead?” The FBI agent rolled his eyes. “I’m still having a hard time believing this. I mean… Really I’m going along with you guys because the conversation at the club peaked my curiosity, and you happen to be following some of the same people that I’m tracking… So there is a convenience here. But asking a federal agent to hand his weapon over to a girl that looks like Lydia Deets is going a bit too far for my comfort zone.”
“So you need proof?” Zak asked.
“I’ll arrange it at some point. By the way, you got that tracking kit?”
“Aigt’, hand that over, take care of the kids when I drop you off at the hotel and I’ll drop the kit off at the club. Time is cutting short and we got to be ready for anything. These vamps aren’t playing around.”
Jordan handed the gun through the hole in the divider. Yannis watched as Zak took it from her and holstered it.
“Thanks,” Zak said while keeping an eye on the road ahead. “Look.. Jordan. I’m sorry I was mad at you. I understand from Titus that it’s just something you do but we’re going to have to figure out how to handle this situation with Eric’s parents. They can’t know about him. I know you didn’t intend to turn him but now we have a problem. A big problem that needs to be addressed and I honestly have no clue what to do.”
“Let me guess, they can’t go out in the sun?” Yannis asked.
“Right.. They can’t.” Zak said.
“Riiiight….” Yannis shook his head in genuine disbelief as he sighed an exasperated breath through his lips.
“I’m sorry,” Jordan whispered.
“The beach…” Eric’s sad voice added. “I’m going to miss the beach.”
“I didn’t mean to do it!” Jordan yelled in defiance. “God! I didn’t know? Please… Quit making me feel like poop and find something better to do than mope. You can turn to mist! You can run all the way across the city in thirty minutes or less, you can jump off buildings, and get shot with no problems! You can stay awake all day without getting tired and then continue on with your night, or you can go to sleep on queue as long as the sun is up and hibernate through it! You can play basketball like a god and juggle dumpsters! Focus on that!”
“I’m sorry.” Zak started to laugh a little. “I know you’re going through a lot but don’t tempt him to juggle dumpsters, please. I’ve had enough of — What is it with you guys and dumpsters anyway?!”
“What are you talking about?!” Jordan yelled.
“Oh bullshit! You vampires have some sort of… Dumpsteritus in your DNA! Every single time you get into fights, there’s a dumpster involved. Did I ever tell you what happened last Halloween when your mother and I –,”
The car lurched to the side and bounded through the air. The immense crush on the side of the vehicle sent Yannis’s head into the dash as glass seemed to float in slow motion around the inside of the vehicle. The shimmering particles rained around for a moment as the two Vampires in the back of the vehicle remained in a highly alert, defensive mode of living-death which gave them the ability to see time in slow motion. She turned her head to her boyfriend who still had his eyes closed. He was still seeing time as a mortal and she was just discovering the new ability. The car had just been hit and was still on it’s apogee. She reached for divider between the front and the back seats. As she yanked it out, she felt the vibrations of the glass in her hand. She pushed it down to the floor because the time it would have taken for gravity to let it fall on it’s own would have taken too long. She pushed herself into the front seat. By that time, the car was fifteen feet in the air and had only begun to flip upside down. She pulled the drivers side door off and flung it toward the ground. Jordan then hit the latch button on the seatbelt but the seatbelt was moving as slowly as the glass on the inside of the car. She took hold of the belt and forced it aside and then yanked her best friend out of the vehicle.
She saw Zak’s torso move but his head stayed in once place, his face was fixed in the same expression of surprise and horror. Jordan reached her hand to his head to keep his neck moving with the rest of his body as she jumped from the vehicle and pushed herself to the streets. She only moved with the speed of the vehicle as she placed Zak on the street. Jordan jumped back into the air and shot herself straight into the car. Yannis was already hurt badly but far from dead. She kicked the opposite door straight out of the vehicle. In much the same manner, she unlatched Yannis’s constraints and launched him from the car. The injured agent was placed on the sidewalk. As for her boyfriend, she knew he’d be okay. By this time though, Jordan was angry, and hungry. The girl started a run toward the garbage truck that hit them as two men with guns had only begun to step out of the cabin. Her joints ached at this point and she gasped and stopped running.
Time suddenly ran normal and the sound of the crash startled her. The moans of Zak and Yannis could be heard after the vehicle stopped tumbling end over end. Jordan collapsed to the ground, exhausted from moving so quickly to save the lives of her friends. Zak was the only one who got off of the ground with nothing to complain about but another totaled Dodge Charger and a minor case of whiplash. He pulled his gun out as the boy behind him pried himself out of the twisted metal that used to be Zak’s car. Jordan crawled back to Yannis and reached for him. Despite needing blood so desperately, she bit into her arm to get her own blood flowing. She forced her hand onto Yannis’s mouth. He gasped in defiance but in that short second of refusal, the gash in his forehead vanished and the painful resetting of his ribs caused him to scream as his body completely healed itself.
Jordan’s body jolted as a bullet smacked against her back. She blacked out as she got shot but Yannis pulled her to safety with his newfound strength. He knew he had to get her to shelter now that she officially made a believer out of him. Zak also felt the sting of a few bullets hitting him but he kept firing. Yannis watched in horror as the gunfight continued. One shot after the next, Zak was hit, the other gunmen were hit. He fired, they fired. Finally the two men dropped to the ground but by that point Zak had been shot multiple times.
“Go!” He gasped as he fell over.
The boy looked to the sky as he stepped over the collapsed body of Zak Jones. He pulled at the manhole cover with his bare hands and slid it open. He then ran to Jordan and grabbed her unconscious frame. He pulled her into the sewer and dropped her in.
“Hey, are you coming?”
“Stay down there until tonight… I need to stay here.” Yannis said. He stumbled to his feet as the manhole cover slid back in to place. Yannis fell next to Zak’s body and he flipped him over. Zak suddenly gasped and looked up at Yannis.
“You’re alive!” His dark eyes fixated on him as his lips rose in relief. He reached down at the detective’s bullet riddled shirt and ripped it open to reveal a bullet proof vest underneath. “Smart man…” Yannis said.
“Where are the kids?” Zak wheezed as he asked.
“They went down the sewer,” Yannis said.
“She healed you?”
Yannis reached to his head. There was blood but no cuts, no bruises, nothing else.
“I certainly hope she didn’t turn me.”
Zak reached up and felt for a pulse on the agent. There was a dull thumping against his fingertips. Yannis watched as Zak smiled in return.
“Just don’t get your ass killed tonight and you won’t end up undead. That’s what happened to Jordan. So, am I still alive?”
“You are, but your car is not.” Yannis said as he nodded to the flaming heap of wreckage in the middle of the road. Zak strained to turn his neck despite the pain from his brush with whiplash. Even from a medium distance away, someone would have been able to see the whites in Zak’s eyes as he witnessed the smoldering remains of his vehicle. He started ticking off his fingers after he closed his eyes. Yannis looked at him with a fair amount of confusion.
“What are you doing?”
“I’m trying to keep count.”
“How many Dodge Chargers Anna and I have destroyed this year.”
Zak felt bones crack in protest as Yannis helped him off the street. They both looked to the manhole with different expressions. Zak started cursing as he made his way down. Yannis was reluctant altogether.
“You coming?!” Zak asked.
“I’m weighing what’s worse!” Yannis grabbed hold of the rungs on the ladder. “Staying around to explain what just happened to your boss, or running into one of those famous New York City Sewer Alligators.” He started making his way down as he said it.
“Trust me, you’re safer down here.”
As they descended, they found Jordan and Eric knee deep in rain water. The expansive, circular twenty-five foot diameter tunnel was lit by workers lights that must have been on at all hours of the night. It allowed for the humans to see just fine even though the two vampires could do with or without the illumination.
“I think the hotel is that way!” Eric said while pointing toward the Northern end of the tunnel. Jordan looked to her boyfriend with surprise and distrust.
“How do you know that?” Jordan put her hands on her soaked skirt. The boy looked to Jordan and then to the two cops that both looked to him as if he were putting on an act. After gauging the looks he was getting, he rolled his eyes and hopped up to the curve of the tunnel where a large glass encased workman’s map was.
“Because it tells you right here, douschebags…”
“He’s a smartie…” She stated.
“How are we going to get up there?” Zak asked. “I mean… You can’t just pop the cap off the street with sunlight pouring through.”
“Oh, now you’re thinking ahead!” The boy said as he led them through the sewer system.
“And what about me?!”
“What?” Zak asked as he tried to move his feet around something that looked like a turd. He started to become concerned when the piece of shit seemed as if it wanted to chase him through the knee deep waters but it gradually lost interest in chasing after his leg.
“I wasn’t talking to you, Cop.. I was talking to Jordan. You saved everyone but me. I saw you all watching me as the car crashed and you saved them, but not me?!”
“You can survive car crashes, they can’t! Duh!” Jordan rolled her blue eyes. Her skirt seemed to want to float up to the water as she did everything she could to tip-tow herself high enough so that the nasty water from NYC’s runoff didn’t soak her underwear.
“But still… You couldn’t have gotten me out of the car? Cars catch on fire and explode when they crash you know!” The boy’s wining was starting to get on Yannis’s nerves as pulled his fingers into a fake gun and aimed it at the kids head. Zak smiled at the gesture and shook his head.
Several piles of dust took flight into the air as the door swung open to a battered and bleeding member of the Gamboni crime family. Three figures sat up in the bed having been woken up the instant they heard the footsteps to the door. Rodney’s anger was evident on his face as his skin went so pale that he looked like a monster compared to the other two vampires. The man at the door contemplated running for his life but he managed to stay still out of braveness or sheer terror.
“They got away…”
Over a few seconds, the statue-like paleness went away to a more sickly looking pale; a normal shade of white for him. Fangs glistened in the dark as he laughed.
“You roused us in the morning, for this? Of course they got away. Did you actually think I expected you to do anything to them? We are sending a message… This ends when the sun goes down. Now, unless you don’t value your miserable life, shut the door please.”
As the three lie back down to gain rest for the upcoming battle, Amy still had little idea what was going on. Rodney relished the look of confusion on her face. She continued to stay calm; knowing that there were guards at the door made it impossible for her to attempt an escape. The woman looked to Rodney and recognized the look on his face as he forcefully kicked Casey out of the bed.
“To the bathroom with you.” Rodney grabbed his pillows and threw them over the edge of the bed. “Take those and don’t come out until one of us sends for you.”
At the crash site, a black Jeep rolled to a stop next to a fire truck. Tom stepped out and onto the street filled with the shattered debris of a Dodge Charger. Two fire fighters approached him and escorted him through the crowd of onlookers that gathered in hopes of spicing their night with a new facbook photo of a dead guy.
“What happened?” Tom carefully approached the twisted mesh of metal and melted plastic and hoped that he wasn’t going to find any charred remains in what was left of a detectives cruiser.
“Looks like they got t-boned by a dump truck, sir… None of the bodies were police officers but that is definitely one of yours, sir.” The woman pulled her fire fighters helmet off and let it dangle from her hand. She pointed to the streets. “The corpse with an entire magazines worth of bullet holes in em’ has prison tattoos so you might want to get one of your detectives on it. Looks like whoever tried to take them down wasn’t expecting a fight. Either they’re taken by the mob or they’re chasing down the rest of the people that did this.”
Tom ran his hands through his grey hair and fought the urge to hyperventilate. There were only two night shift detectives in his small precinct to worry about and he knew that he was either going to end up yelling at the fire fighters for scaring him like that, or yell at Zak and Anna for getting mixed up in the mafia all over again. Knowing that they were trailing the Gamboni family to begin with, he was sure that they had most certainly gotten on the nerves of some very bad people.
At the city morgue, Anna’s phone rang.
“Where are you?” Toms voice sounded furious. She looked behind her to see the medical examiner could even hear the voice of a very pissed off person. Anna walked out of the room for a little privacy.
“I’m waiting for an M.E’s report on the victims from the hotel last night… And then, I’m going to a hotel to go to sleep. In case you haven’t heard… My apartment blew up today.”
“Have you heard from Zak?”
“Because he fucked up another Dodge Charger and shot a member of the Gamboni Mafia, THAT’S WHY… Get him on conference.”
Anna felt her heart race as she started to dial her phone.
Rodney was surprised to find the club not only closed but empty. Throughout the night, he found Anna’s apartment, Zak’s old house, Nero’s place, and any other place he could think of searching in Manhattan, empty. For the first time since he arrived on the island, he realized that he was no longer one step ahead of the people he was sent to kill. The basement of Club Proton housed the large computer database that was to be the new era of the Sanctum for New York City. Several Vampires had arrived from England to help him with the raid that night, only to find that there was nothing to raid. Rodney was humiliated in front of the very people that placed their trust in him and it only made him more pissed. The server room had tables lined along the walls where, in the early 20th century, long water hoses were strung to prevent mold. After the threat of city-wide fires, fire departments kept their gear below street level to dry after responding to a fire. Now, the benches served as desks for laptop computers, desktops, server racks, and high tech equipment. Rodney sat next to a server tower and looked around the room. A British computer technician leisurely sucked down a blood pack left behind from Margot’s refrigerator while going over the various systems.
“We’re in luck, sir… They didn’t destroy the computer room like I guessed they would. It seems as if the buggers wiped the drives clean and left all the equipment for us.” The vampire turned around as if to be congratulated for his good fortune but instead was met with a look of utter disdain.
“You idiot… It means they plan on coming back. If they wanted to leave forever they would have destroyed the whole building.”
“Something you should have done weeks ago.” Another voice said. Rodney turned to see a tall, slender silhouette descend from the club above. Devon House, one of the five ancients from Great Brittan descended slowly. As the florescent light hit his dark black hair, expensive red and white suit, pale skin, and dark eyes, Rodney could see Devon was angry. He pointed over to another corner of the room with a sickly white finger and pointed to the boy and the hooker-turned-vampire.
“I see you’ve been busy.”
“Gathering the troops, sir.” Rodney practically bowed in the man’s presence.
“You can keep them if you wish but we’re doing it my way now,” Devon looked around the room as if it was all his. He nodded to the technician. “Go to your car. I want Linux in these systems and all operating systems set up. If the network is already satisfactory make sure you prepare all the drives but wait for my order before installing information. If for some reason we are overtaken, I will not be the one who refreshed the network with all the data Margot needs to run everything.”
“Right away sir,” the tech said. He brushed past him without another word.
“They’re with two humans, correct?” Devon whispered as he sat down in the chair across from the desk where Rodney perched himself. The slightly younger ancient ran his hands through his long brown hair and nodded to Devon.
“Anna and Zak… They’ve been seen with an American Agent, too.”
“Good… Their sloppiness has given us an avenue of approach,” Devon said while leaning his elbows on his knees and placing his hands together. His beady dark eyes locked onto Rodney’s as he almost looked as if he were praying. “Get to the neighbors, the places they work, their families… Any possible way to get their attention. Mortals are easier to get to than immortals. They still have family to loose.”
Rodney nodded and hopped off of the table. He was stopped by an audible cough before making it to the stairwell.
“My show now… You call me.”
Devon got up and handed Rodney piece of paper with a number to a pre-paid cell phone. “Do anything without me and I’ll be having conversations with the other elders that involve you. You know what I mean…” Devon’s brows furrowed as he pushed his finger into Rodney’s jacket. Rodney blinked once and ascended half way up before pointing to Amy and Casey. They didn’t have to be told twice to leave the room.
Just off the shore of Rockaway Park, ten miles from New York city was The Oceans Night, a brand new 100 foot yacht. Titus was reluctant to let Jordan, Zak, Anna, and Eric onboard. The last time any of them set foot onboard a ship, it sank. Titus’s once secluded, secret living arrangement was now filled full of Vampires not wanting to get staked by the British. It was like an immortal declaration of independence, only, they retreated without signing a single John Hancock. Somehow he knew that this would happen; that’s why, instead of using a sailboat, he went all out and bought the latest super yacht with enough living quarters for all the sanctum members, including the human refugee’s who were currently programming their temporary pre-paid phones in a desperate attempt to keep their jobs . Anna was able to get a call through to explain their absence to her boss; they had to leave their own phones off the ships because Titus was sure the British Sanctum will have brought in their own techno-geek by now. It was a full moon that night; a blue moon. To Titus, he could see everything along the shoreline from where they were anchored.
That was the whole idea.
No vampire would be able to come within fifty feet of the boat without someone noticing. It even had a helicopter pad for the humans to escape off of if worse came to worse. He wasn’t thinking about their well being, he was thinking about his boat. Anna and Zak had a tendency to blow shit up when they get into trouble and if they were in trouble, he’d rather them find some asinine way to blow a helicopter up rather than his twelve million dollar yacht. Of course, he would play it cool and claim that he was doing it for their safety. He may have been Jordan’s tutor, but he wasn’t going to open himself up to getting kicked by a fourteen year old vampire.
“So what did he say?” Zak asked Anna as they sat on the bow together to watch the moonlit shore. Titus couldn’t help but eavesdrop since they were sitting right behind him as he leaned over railing. It was the only place to get away from the sounds of Techno coming from the top deck cabin. Pedro had found out that there was an access port to plug his IPOD into the ballroom speakers. On second thought, if there was one place I wouldn’t mind getting blown up, I’ll make sure Zak and Anna spend their time in the ballroom with Pedro, Titus thought.
Anna closed the lid on her new cheapass phone and turned her head to Zak.
“He said that if you’re gone long enough, it might give him time to scrounge enough money to give you yet another car to crash.” Anna smiled and shook her head. “He said he understood; just as long as we are safe but he expects a full report on his desk as soon as we return.”
“So that’s why you brought the laptops? So we can fill out reports? Pedro’s up there dancing to techno and having a party.”
“Don’t remind me,” Titus said. “You can swap to day shift if you like. No vampires can come out in the day and I have a limited human staff, including a helicopter pilot.” Titus turned around and leaned against the railing. “If you do so, I want you back onboard before dusk.”
“We’ll stay,” Anna said. “Besides, someone has to keep an eye on my daughter.” She made sure the comment was directed to Titus as she said it.
“She’s a Vampire,” Titus said. “First of all, she’s not human anymore. She’s a Vampire with a hunting instinct that specifically uses sexuality to lure her prey. Your daughter is a killer, Anna. She’s killed before, and she’ll kill again and she won’t even feel bad about it.” His voice was like acid; Anna twitched the moment he turned and said it and it hurt.
“She’s still my girl.”
“Yes.” Titus scratched his flat-top grey hair and nodded. “She has special needs though and you cannot restrict them or else bad things will happen. At least she has someone to satisfy some of those special needs. And she’s not going to kill anyone here. She’s in a good place.”
The sound of a Jet-Ski starting up caught their attention. Titus was quick to check the starboard side of the ship to see if the exit for the Jet-Ski’s was opened. Seeing as it was not, he knew that someone had picked the Jet Ski up from the interior dock of the ship and sent it elsewhere.
Titus’s drink dropped from his hand and shattered on the deck when he saw a Jet Ski in the back pool. On the Jet Ski was Jordan, clad in a bathing suit, with a basketball under her hand. The basketball court was a deck above the pool and he saw that Jordan was looking at it. Her boyfriend was waving his hands in the air and shaking his head. Zak noticed this and his lips tightened as he thought to himself, maybe, the kid wasn’t that bad after all.
Pedro was making bets.
In an instant, Titus turned to mist and dematerialized only to return to solid form on the back of the Jet Ski that Jordan pulled to the top deck somehow. Titus yanked the safety line from the engine and the machine choked. The crowd of on-looking vampires sighed and soon went on about the party.
Pedro had to give all the money back.
“Just what do you think you were doing?” Titus crossed his arms in front of his bare body that Jordan wished she didn’t have to look at. Jordan rolled off the Jet Ski and swam to the edge of the pool where Anna, Zak, and Eric now stood. Titus returned to mist and the cloud followed her as she pulled herself up on deck. The mist materialized again and Anna shielded her eyes. Zak looked away while Eric looked at the man with fixed amazement.
“You have to show me how to do that,” Eric practically demanded.
“Later,” Titus said. He was about to say something more when Zak pulled his handcuffs out of his belt.
“You do know you’re but-ass naked in front of Jordan, right?” Zak asked while tapping the metal of the cuffs together as if insinuating he would arrest the vampire at any second.
“Don’t worry about it. Titus, you should get dressed.” Anna pulled Zak back while not caring that her daughters tutor was fully exposed. “You should answer him though, Jordan. What did you think you were doing?”
“I was going to make an epic shot.” Jordan looked to the pool where a basketball bobbed up and down next to the jet ski.
“This is a brand new yacht, Jordan. You do not go around doing things that is going to wreck it. So you can either swim in the pool, play basketball, or run around on the jet ski, but please, don’t do all three at the same time.” Titus said. Jordan looked down at her feet and nodded.
“Perhaps you should at least show everyone where they’re sleeping tonight,” Nero suggested as he walked over to them with a glass of blood in his hands. He took a sip and looked Titus up and down. “It’s too bad tanning beds use UV light. Your ass could use some sunshine.” After he made his observation both the vampire kids started laughing.
Once the kids were shown their rooms, they came right back out; after all, their waking hours were from dusk til dawn. Despite Titus’s speech, Anna demanded that Jordan and Eric sleep in separate rooms. Jordan, out of shame, accepted the arrangement but Titus had his reservations about treating them like human beings; it was the first major disagreement Jordan had ever seen between her tutor and her mother.
The interior of the boat was much like a large house; in fact, it had more than she had in her own home. Jordan couldn’t believe how much the entire place just didn’t look like a ship. Even pleasure cruise boats didn’t have the luxury of Titus’s yacht. Margot was commanding a projection drape to roll down from the ceiling while Nero set a projector to connect to a laptop. Once the screen came on, it showed a large map of New York City – on it were several blips. One on 121st Street, another on 335 West End Avenue. There were several others but the close proximity to Pedro’s club and her own house sent shivers down her spine. She wondered what they were doing there.
“You don’t think they raided my diary, do you?” Jordan asked. “Oh… My computer!”
“Please don’t tell me you continued with your diary after you turned into a vampire.” Titus looked to the reflective stone ceiling and seemed as if he were about to weep, sarcastically.
“Ummmmm….” Jordan folded her fingers together behind her back and swayed back and fourth as her bright blue eyes tried to lock onto Titus’s gaze when he finally looked down to the young girl.
“You didn’t say anything about us doing uh — you know?” Eric asked.
In the corner of the room, Yannis rolled his eyes.
“Priorities!” Yannis yelled.
“Right…” Nero sat down on the collection of Sofa’s shaped like a U around the coffee table and activated a laser pointer. “Right now your favorite admirers are searching the city near our last known locations. One of them is even scoping out your workplace,” Nero looked to Zak and Anna while drawing circles around a red dot next to the police pricinct where they worked. “… So looks like you’ll be burning those vacation hours until we figure out what to do there.”
“What are we going to do about it? We know where they are, but we need a plan now. This is undeniably a great advantage we have, but how are we going to use it?” Margot asked as she took her place next to Nero. As if on queue, Jaime Jax squeezed herself in-between them. Margot was the one to roll her eyes that time.
“Uh, trust me sweetie… There’s no fucking way.” Nero assured Jaime. The scantly clad DJ smiled and hugged Nero tightly with her eyes closed while Margot’s mouth dropped. She used the touching moment to flick Nero the bird.
“Dude,” Pedro yelled to Yannis who was leaned against a wall of the boat. “…you know combat tactics, right? I mean. Most FBI types come from the military.”
Yannis raised an eyebrow at Pedro and shook his head.
“No, I was a film student before I decided to study law to get where I am now.”
“I believe that falls into my expertese. I was a Roman General.” Titus stepped forward. “Believe it or not, combat tactics have not changed much since my time. The problem is fighting without other people getting involved. We have to contend with the police if a fight breaks out anywhere in the streets and we can’t have that.” Titus walked around behind the projector and studied the map. “We have to lure them where the police cannot get to us.”
“We could fight on the boat?” Eric blurted. It as met with mostly laughter from the other Vampires. Nero smiled as he wrapped an arm around Jaime and shook his head at the kids.
“Titus would kill us before the British vamp’s if we even thought about that. This is a nice boat.”
Titus nodded at that.
“You haven’t been around Jordan and her family long enough to know this yet but they destroy everything they touch.”
“The freedom tower,” Joey, one of Pedro’s friends suggested. The club going vampires that usually attended Club Proton all nodded as if they were some sort of cult following the leader.
“What?” Titus asked.
“The freedom tower. The last fifteen floors aren’t even completed yet.” Joey pointed to the projection screen. Titus reached to the computer and zoomed in on the tower. The schematic showed that the top of the tower was still mostly skeletal construction.
“You’ve got to be joking,” Anna said. “That tower is the most fortified, guarded, and cherished structure this city has. We can’t just walk through the front doors and ask to use the top floors. There’s going to be security, guards, and locks all over that place. They won’t let just anyone in there without alerting the police.” The blonde detective finished ticking off her fingers.
“I doubt they’ll have surveillance on the unfinished floors though,” Titus said. “We– can turn to mist, you know.”
“Whoa, wait…” Jordan said. “There are bunches of people in this room that I don’t want to see naked and going to mist means naked. No!”
“There are certain people that can get in there with our weapons, supplies… Clothes…” Pedro pointed to the cops and the FBI agent.
“They keep logs, dumbass.” Zak leaned against the back of one of the sofa’s and looked to Pedro. “… They’ll ask questions.”
“Wait… These sites have secondary distribution facilities where they store their security footage. All someone has to do is mess that computer up the night before we plant an ambush and we’ll be alright. It’s locked down tight but I bet it’s not air tight.” Yannis stopped after he said it. He couldn’t believe he was helping people break into a treasured building that was to be the new symbol of New York City.
“Looks like we got ourselves a plan,” Nero said.
“Now how are we going to lure them all to a building like that without rousing suspicion?” Anna asked. “It’s not like we can say hello, join me at the top of this building so we can ambush you.”
“They would need to have a reason, yeah…” Pedro pondered. “I’m out of ideas there. What would get them to want to go to mist and enter the building like that?”
“We’re going to have to let them think they’ve rattled our chains. Undoubtedly they’re planning on finding us by affecting the city in a way that requires our presence. Let’s wait and see what they do and hopefully they’ll see our plan as a counter-response. Naturally they’ll probably want to meet somewhere, what better place than a building that reaches to the sky where nobody can get hurt?” Titus said.
“Yeah, nobody except us!” Jaime added. “What do you think they’ll do.”
“Whatever it is, won’t be very nice. I assure you. Take your hits. We’ll win this war.” Titus shut the projector off. “For now… Keep the TV’s on and search for hints of their retaliation. Whatever it will be, by design, will attract our attention.”
Rodney was given an odd mission. As a man that upheld the Sanctum all his life, he never thought he would be pulling off such drastic stunts. Part of it was obviously over some grand plan to show what was happening to the Vampires of New York without a proper Sanctum in place by staging chaos and the other part of the plan was to get the attention of the traitors, wherever they may be, and pull them out of hiding. Some of the city councilmen lived in a gated community near the bay. It would be the best way to get chaos on the news. One quick punch to the guard in the guard shack had him out like a light. His orders were exclusively to kill no one, and to grab a few high-end vehicles. Amy and Casey walked along the sidewalk as if they belonged there while Rodney pried open a garage to one of the larger houses in the suburb and peered inside.
Between the three of them, only two would be driving a car. Amy was still too new to understand how to turn to mist. That’s why she was going to be the one to make sure the car owners knew where the cars went as an innocent bystander. Although oblivious as to why they were doing this, telling a young boy that he was going to be let off his chain to cause all sorts of mayhem on the streets of New York was fun for him. Rodney was certain that he wouldn’t get very far before he ditched the car and went to mist. Rodney, on the other hand, planned a lengthy, bloody chase through the big apple.
A blaring alarm so loud that it was sure to wake the entire neighborhood, went off. Rodney instantly pulled the passenger door open on the car and jumped into a sleek two door Mercedes-Benz SL65 AMG. sports car.
“I love how you rich bastards make everything easier to steal,” Rodney said to himself as he pressed the button that said start and peeled out of the drive way. Amy started screaming the moment the advisor to the mayor ran out with an illegal firearm.
“I saw it!!! I saw it!” She jumped up and down and pointed down the road. “He turned right out of the neighborhood!”
Another car burst through garage across the street from the house that just had the Mercedes stolen. This time, it was a 2012 Honda Civic. The neighborhood was starting to rouse from the obnoxious sound of a home security alarm and many got to witness the Civic haphazardly weaving across the street and barreling into a parked car that cost two times as much as the Civic. The boy pulled the vehicle into reverse and tried to peel out while taking out a few mailboxes in the process. Eventually, he finally left the neighborhood at around the same time the police responded and began showing up.
Casey kept a mask over his face to avoid the traffic cameras as he stepped on the peddle of the automatic transmission. The guards booth was coming up quick and there was a police car blocking the path. He contemplated going to mist right then and there but he kept his wits about him and held the peddle down. The cop, realizing that the Honda was not going to stop, drove out of the way just enough that only the rear end of the cruiser got clipped by Honda’s collision. The front end of Casey’s stolen car crumpled slightly but the rear end of the police cruiser folded in and it’s rear tire exploded on impact. Casey hit the breaks to avoid flying into the guardrail of a small park at the other end of the street but wound up in the path of an oncoming truck. Moments before impact, Casey vanished in a cloud if mist. The officer had just enough time to watch as the Honda launched into the air and careened over the guardrail to the bay below. Casey materialized in a row of bushes in the park to see the officer jump out of his vehicle and limp over to the guardrail. He also saw Amy running along the road and out of sight during the distraction.
Rodney not only wove through cars with expert precision, he aimed for people crossing the crosswalks and caused serious injuries on the way to times square while packs of police cruisers followed him in hopes of stopping the carnage. He pulled the vehicle into a tight turn and lost control momentarily until his course was straightened thanks glass hut that once served as a bus stop before the Mercedes Benz turned it into abstract art with the help of high speeds. The very thing he was always taught by the Sanctum not to do, he was doing; he was making a complete full of himself. The detached members of the British Sanctum coven would have plenty to report on and blame on those who kept the place running so well in their absence. He felt a tire pop but he wasn’t about to let that slow him down. He felt the car start to drift to one side and he compensated for the drift by aiming the tip of the car to one side of the main road
In the closest trailing car, a first year officer and his veteran partner did their best to keep up with the car as it sped away but there was nothing they could do. The engine they were up against was too powerful. They called in a helicopter to keep up with the chase. They couldn’t believe their eyes when Rodney slammed his car into the Battery Parkway overpass and into a vehicle that was attempted to travel into the underpass. Two passengers stumbled from their SUV by the time the police came. Rodney was sure to wait until the rookie cop had his eyes on him before blasting into mist. The cop watched as a man behind a battered windshield vanished into thin air.
“Did you see that?!” The rookie asked.
“No, I didn’t. And neither did you if you want to keep your career.”
Casey chased after Amy and caught up with her after a few blocks. The kid had found a trash bag after turning to mist and used it as his only dignity by the time he pulled the other fledgling vampire around to face him.
“And just where do you think you are going?” Casey asked. Ever since Rodney told him that he was someone’s master, he felt like he had control and significance once again and he wasn’t going to let that go; he wasn’t going to let her go. He liked the idea of being in control over someone. Amy turned and ran faster.
“I’m going to tell Rodney!”
She didn’t turn around or respond as she vanished in an alleyway.
After about an hour, Casey found Rodney near where he stole the car in the first place. He was dressed in a dark suit and tie that looked as if it probably cost a lot of money. Casey could see the mans scorn from across the street as he advanced on the boy.
“Good job trying to drive a car,” he said to the kid. “I see you haven’t found something new to wear. Where is Amy?”
Casey would have been trembling if he wasn’t already dead. He stuttered as he tried to explain to his master that she ran off into the night without as much as a chase to prevent it. Rodney nodded and rolled his eyes.
“To think… You were going to be the man that ran the family after your father died. I’m starting to have second thoughts about you, kid. Didn’t your father teach you about loose ends.” Rodney enjoyed playing with the kid. He was dead already in his eyes and the only reason he was still alive was because he thought it would be interesting to see how he handled the other Vampires. Casey was pure cannon fodder and Rodney was extremely entertained to have someone to talk to because it wouldn’t matter in a few nights. If the other vampires didn’t kill him, Rodney looked forward to doing it himself.
“I didn’t mean to! She just ran off and all I had was…”
“The trash bag… You know why all you had was the trash bag?” Rodney smiled a sinister grin at the kid. “You need to think like a vampire before you get killed.” Casey flinched and held his hands in front of his face when the elder vampire reached to him and grabbed him by the neck. He felt his head press closely to the mans shoulder as he looked down the length of his arm to see where he was pointing.
“Go to mist… That shop there. Pick the clothes you want as quickly as possible, kick the door out from the inside and leave before the police come. You should be able to do this in seconds. If you can’t go back to mist again and come back later but don’t come back to me without doing it or I will kill you one last time.”
The boy nodded.
“Good… Meet me back at that damned club before the sun comes up.”
Anna woke up to the smell of breakfast. She wiped her eyes. At some point in the night, she had fallen asleep while all the vampires, including her daughter, continued on with what could only be considered, their battle-plan festivities. The windows on the boat were tinted in a UV reflective tint that allowed light to pour into the ship without hurting the vampires inside. Which was why Pedro showed up with breakfast without being set aflame by the daylight rays. Eggs, bacon, orange juice, and toast with butter occupied the tray that the DJ brought for them.
“Pedro?” Zak asked as he peaked out of the covers.
“What?! I can’t eat this but I used to love cooking! I don’t get a chance to do this so before you say something that makes me regret the service I am giving, shut your mouth and eat.”
“I can’t eat with my mouth shut,” Zak said as he got out of the bed in his boxers.
“See! That’s what I’m talking about bro! Quit ruining the moment because you’ll regret it if you keep on! This breakfast is the shit. When you two sink your teeth into these eggs that I spiced with my own special secret ingredient that was handed down through the centuries, you’ll be regretting you ever disrespected me by your wise-ass comments. Now eat, bro. The flavor will explode in your mouth and you’ll be begging me for my recipe.”
“Were you all up the whole night?”
Anna reached for the tray and took a piece of toast. She noticed that Pedro was watching carefully as she took a bite. She noticed his dark eyebrows raise and his eyes tracked her chewing. He looked up at her as she chewed with the same focus he put into his work at the club when he mixed tracks for the masses. Suddenly, her taste buds activated and sent signals of pure pleasure to her brain the moment her tongue registered contact with the spices he used on the entire dish. It wasn’t hot but it was extremely tasty and she couldn’t hide the reaction. She saw Pedro’s smile widen as he held his fist up to the air and opened up his fingers in an explosion-like manner.
“What’d I tell you! See!” Pedro pointed to Zak’s partner and then to the plate. Anna in turn turned to Zak and nodded. She tried not to smile but couldn’t help it. Toast crumbles hit te tray as she leaned over it from the edge of the bed.
“Zak.. He’s right, you have to try this.” Pedro looked to Anna. “Yes, yes we were up all night but we don’t have to sleep if we don’t want to. We don’t get tired. This is the first sunrise I’ve seen in seven years! I’m not going to sleep through it if I can witness it without being set aflame.”
Zak suddenly cursed. He had bacon in his mouth while fist-bumping Pedro with his free hand. Pedro couldn’t resist the pleasure of watching them eat and giving a little awww yeah in response to the near-seven-foot giant.
“How many people fell asleep then?” Anna asked.
“Probably just Titus. He own’s the yacht so I can’t imagine this is anything new to them but let’s just put it this way… The moment Titus mentioned that the windows were safe to see a sunrise, the whole ship was stuck to the glass like fish in a tank that just went empty.”
“Did you give Yannis any of this?” Zak asked while waving a clump of egg’s through the air on a fork. Pedro rolled his eyes.
“Nah I just gave breakfast to you two because I’m an inconsiderate asshole. Of course I made Yannis breakfast!” Pedro rolled his eyes like he was just asked another stupid question from a mere mortal.
“So are you going to give me the recipe? Damn…” Zak nearly moaned at the end of his sentence as he forked more egg’s off the plate. He looked like a giant hoover vacuum cleaner as he absorbed the meal faster than a tornado in Oz. By that time, the door flew open and Yannis walked through. He looked like a zombie trying to eat brains as he stumbled through. He locked eyes on Pedro and pointed at him. Yannis had clearly just gotten up; his hair was astray, his clothes were wrinkled, his tie was off, and he only had one shoe on.
“Pedro… Can you make seconds?! That was the best breakfast I’ve ever had in-my-entire-life!”
“It’s great to be appreciated. Sure!” He looked to the other two humans that were sitting on the bed and pointed over his shoulder at Yannis with wide eyes and a large grin that could have made the Joker from Batman jealous. Yannis took the chair that Pedro was about to sit in before he was called to his art.
“Oh my god! Wow…”
“I know right?” Zak said as he finished his plate.
The Columbian breathed in deeply as he approached the kitchen. He found himself missing the smell of the meals that his parents had taught him how to cook. It seemed as if all the undead aboard the ship appreciated the smell of something forgotten like the scent of breakfast. He noticed Nero smiling at him; Pedro smiled in return.
“Pedro.” Nero walked over to the stove and breathed deeply. “I just wanted to say… I know I might have been harsh with you in the past and I never got the chance to apologize.”
“We were both pretty shitty, Nero…” Pedro said while pouring some eggs into the pan and adding a few extra spices into the mix from the shelf. “You thought I was doing something I wasn’t doing.”
“What about the extacy to adults?” Nero asked rhetorically.
“That’s different, and yes… It’s a dance club, Nero.”
Nero laughed and bumped the cooks shoulder with his fist and shook his head.
“Things were so much simpler back then.”
“Yeah,” Pedro agreed. “Well it all got complicated.” Pedro leaned over and threw in some bread for the toast and went back to throwing a few strips of bacon onto another empty pan and frying it. He looked to his unlikely friend while loading the eggs onto a plate. “… but it gave us a chance to figure out who we really are.”
“I see more in the grey than in black and white, my friend.”
One room over, the sound of a television’s volume began to slowly overtake the deck. A news reporter’s voice echoed through the million dollar boat’s luxurious interior.
… reports coming in state that at least three people have died in the chase and a string of robberies ensued shortly after. Both drivers in the grand theft managed to leave the scene of the crime without being identified or captured. Eye witness reports are scarce at this time but police have identified an eye witness and are currently in the process of finding her in hopes of bringing the suspects to justice. We now return to our top story. Justin Beiber had a five gallon jug of water launched at him during his performance last night; apparently the fan made Trebuchet was put together in a matter of minutes during the —
“Is my bacon burning?!” Yannis peaked out of the room to see Nero and Pedro looking to each other. “What is it?”
“We’ll deal with it tonight,” Margot walked from the living room to the dining room area so that she could fill Zak, Yannis, and Anna in on what was going on. She entered the bedroom to see that all the humans had finished their meal. Margot was the only one dressed in ironed clothing and it seemed as if she had taken a shower already.
“Early vamp gets the blood?” Zak quipped as he gulped down a glass of water. Margot squinted her eyes sarcastically and then looked to Anna. Yannis kept the door open just in case anyone else wanted to walk in on the two officers in their PJ’s.
“It looks as if they’re trying to draw us out of hiding by causing havoc every night until we get back to New York.”
“What did they do?” Yannis asked.
Margot leaned against the wall and crossed her arms while looking out the windows for a moment to enjoy the view of the beach in the distance despite the bad news she was about to give. In her mind, there was nothing they could do about it, and there was nothing the other vampires could do until sundown anyway.
“They’re going to step up their attacks and blame the backlash of the Sanctum violations as if it was our doing. Naturally, they’re going to have to try and get rid of us once and for all because if word got back that they were causing all the trouble at risk of further exposure to our existence, they’ll suffer the same fate as we.”
“Let me get this straight,” Anna said with agitation present in her voice. She pulled her fingers through her shoulder length blonde hair and sighed. “This sanctum of yours didn’t like that you all were running it after some girl killed most of your members, you’ve kept the peace, done a good job, but the British vampires don’t like the idea of you keeping your own house, so they send these people and they go behind their own leaders back to make an example of you guys, and how badly you’ve run the place without them?”
“That’s that bullshit right there…”
Zak couldn’t help but chime in as he always does.
“What are we going to do about it?” Yannis said.
“We’re going to have to get rid of them but get evidence that this was their doing first. Or else we’ll be dealing with a war,” said Margot. “We’ll have to run this by Titus but I’m sure he’ll want us to proceed with our original plans and modify it so that we can gain some sort of proof. Can you buy some camera gear?”
“I’m sure we can get a camera into the building but we shouldn’t push our luck,” Yannis said. “Why not some audio devices instead? Anna, did you guys fix my Blue Whale yet?” The Greek agent asked.
“I’m sure it’s fixed by now, why?”
“It’s a surveillance van, duh… I have all sorts of audio recording equipment. I’ll just throw them in the pile of clothes you need me to bring up to the top floor for tonight.”
“Clothes?” Zak asked.
“As law enforcement, we can enter the tower but the vampires can’t just walk in with us. And last I looked, I guess you guys can’t fly unless you turn to mist so you’re all going to have to float up to the top of the tower like all the rest of the vampires that chase after you.”
“I can see why they made you a special agent. You catch on fast.”
“I suppose we’ll have a full briefing whenever Titus gets up,” Yannis added. “I’m going to go back to bed for a few more hours since I need to be sharp tonight. I’ll drop by your station a few hours before dusk and grab the equipment I need out of my van so you all might want to get the notes around about giving me the outfits you wish to wear.”
“I should pick out something for Jordan,” Anna got up from the bed. At that moment, Margot stepped in between Anna and the door.
“You – might want to give them some more privacy…”
Anna’s eyes narrowed on Margot’s and she raised her eyebrow.
“What the hell is them supposed to mean. And privacy?”
“They’re vampires, Anna.” Margot said. She watched as the detective suddenly switched to mother mode and began to hyperventilate a little. Zak was quick to come to her aid and hold her from behind.
“I’m gonna kill him…”
“Make sure you use the right bullets,” Yannis added helpfully.
“He’s right. You can kill him over and over again as long as you use full metal jacket bullets and not the wooden tipped ones.” Zak pulled his gun out and hit the eject lever on his magazine to check that he had his standard issue rounds in it. “… it’s very therapeutic.”