Monday, July 9, 2012

Rue: The Shattering Part 2


I take a lot of pride in my ability to research things that no one else knows about.  I look through newspapers and figure out how other events tied into the cases I'm working.  Once Amy died she started letting me in on the fact that most things I used to think didn't exist, sure as hell exist and are plenty hungry out there.  So I made it a point to cross reference books of mythology, demonology, occultism, and fairy tales looking for some of my suspects or victims.  I was coming up dry on this one though.

There were no spirits that tormented bodies in the particular way I was finding them.  There were no demons that required their sacrifices to be in such a state of mental and spiritual agony.  In short, it likely was a human, with their boundless creativity mired in rigorous habit.  Even if the human wasn't the only one responsible, they were the one doing the most of the work.  What was baffling were the shattered joints and everything else that required such ridiculous force.  I was big and could get plenty rough, but even I couldn't shatter someone's kneecap just by grabbing and squeezing.

Roger brought me a fresh cup of coffee.  I nodded a "thank you" and he signed back a "welcome."  He and Shannon lived here at the library.  Their apartment complex had been wiped out by a Disciple versus East Fredricksburg engagement.  The city gave them permission to convert one of the back rooms into a bedroom.  They were the only employees of the library, and barring me, were generally the only people here.  They'd let me stay for two days straight as I poured over the newspapers, books, and even the maps looking for a pattern.  For something.  Even with Amy flitting about over my shoulder, I couldn't put together anything tangible.

I slumped back in my chair and swallowed another handful of Pro-Tabs.  Amy sat on a stack of books on the table, legs crossed, chin resting on her hand.

"I don't get it Morgan.  There's nothing that matches the description.  Maybe we're just dealing with a variant.  You know, like a demon that no one's bothered to record yet or a cult that uses this as their indoctrination."

"I can buy into indoctrination.  That doesn't answer me how the victims are being overpowered.  Did the maddened spirits ever give any insight?"

"Well, no.  They tended to roam about, smashing up the places they used to frequent, and then would move on."

"Move on?"

"Yeah.  They'd fade out and go wherever ghosts are supposed to go when they're done being pissed."

"You never have."

"I've got you to take care of."

"Not my point.  You're still here, thinking, rationalizing, existing.  They were operating on pure hatred and instinct.  Then, poof?  They've reconciled everything?"

Amy frowned and sank down to table level.

"I hadn't ever thought about it.  I was just pleased that they were gone to be honest.  You think they may have been what... abducted?

"It Is possible.  Look at Yoku."

She was quiet and so was I.  This was all well and good, but we had nothing to run with.  No leads, no facts, not even a piece of real engaging fiction.

"Let's start back at the beginning hon.  Who was the first victim?"

"Rei Hamasaki, cute little Japanese girl.  Nineteen when she was killed.  Something interesting here Morgan.  She wasn't a prostitute."

"No.  She was exceptionally bright and was already most of the way through a Doctorate's in Literary Theology when she died."

"That's a bit of a change."

"Yeah.  The police report you printed didn't mention it, but the paper praised her for her exploratory work in examining old children's stories.  Not really the type to fit the victim profile anywhere else."

I started rubbing my chin.  I wasn't sure if this helped or just muddied things up worse, but my brain was trying to turn over at least.  That was a start.

Roger sprinted up to me from across the library, holding a portable phone.  He nodded and smiled to Amy, then passed me the phone.  It struck me that I had never introduced her as my wife or even that "hey, that ghost over there is with me."  Roger and his wife just understood.  It was nice to be able to work around people that could put two and two together.

"Morgan here."

"Rue, we've got another one."


"Starlite Hotel, at the corner of Bermont and Blackmoor.  Good news and bad news Rue."


"Suspect's still there."

"Bad news?"

"He's got three holes in his chest and is quite dead.  East Fredricksburg sent in a specialist to lend a hand."

I resisted throwing the phone and simply hung up.  I passed the phone back to Roger and signed a "thank you."  I cradled my head in my hands.  It was all to easy to guess the identity of our helper.

"What's wrong Morgan?"

"There's been another one.  And any hope I had of cleaning this mess up without a ton more deaths just got shot to hell.  E.F. just sent in The Revolver Saint."

There'd be enough blood to bathe in by the time this was over.  I just hoped none of it would be mine.

No comments:

Post a Comment