Chapter 3: A PROPOSAL
In the morning Kowalski arrived at the hotel. He had called Julie earlier and arranged to meet in the coffee shop for breakfast. He had some important questions to ask. He walked through the front doors and over to the coffee shop. Standing at the entrance he saw her waving at the back of the room. He nodded acknowledgement and walked to her table.
“How are you doing this morning, Mrs. Stone?”
“A lot better than last night. But I’m still pretty shaken.”
“Is your husband coming to get you?”
“Later. I told him to take the girls to school and go back to work. That I had things to wrap up with the police.”
“You told me Falco’s real name is Rick Jason. That you knew him ten years ago. Can you tell me about him.”
“He was a man I was serious about. We both worked in the same office. I was in advertising copywriting and he in advertising sales. We went out to dinner and dancing and met a group of Goth types who invited us to a rave party in an abandoned hotel. Rick didn’t want to go. I really wanted to do something different and exciting and insisted we go. Rick said okay and we went. I wish I’d listened to him. To make a long story short, Rick was savagely beaten and I was abducted.”
“How did you survive?”
“Rick found me somehow and saved my life. I remember some things clearly and others in a fog. Their leader was a tall man named Victor Orloff. He moved with incredible speed and agility against Rick as he was trying to help me escape from the house I was imprisoned in. Now Rick is able to move as Orloff did, even faster. They drugged me and dressed me up in a beautiful lace dress with an appliqué of vines sprouting beautiful flowers. They pinned flowers in my hair and I was scented with lavender and jasmine.
“There was a terrible struggle and I may have been hallucinating but I saw orbs of power emitting lightning bolts into my body and into the others. I lost consciousness. But I remember five beheaded bodies on the floor and one on fire. I think Rick killed them. I remember the house on fire and the moon was colored red: the Blood Moon. I remember Rick carrying me effortlessly, going so fast. It felt like I was weightless in his arms and he was flying. He then stopped and put me down. He asked me if I could walk. I said yes. We walked several hours back to my neighborhood. Rick told me to go the rest of the way by myself, which I did. He told me he would come by in the morning. I never saw him again, until last night. I think something terrible has happened to Rick and somehow I’m responsible.”
“I saw Falco, er Rick do superhuman things last night. I saw him leap from the ground floor through a plate glass window on the third floor. Eight heavily armed, hardened criminals are all dead, all hacked with a sword or an inhuman bite. The ones with the bite were all beheaded. We saw the last man die. The way he snapped that man’s arm at the elbow, I didn’t know was possible. We saw the sword that killed the others. I heard a tremendous amount of gunfire. Still, Rick managed to kill all of them before saving you again. There were four more dead on the first floor.”
“Do you think Rick did it?”
“No. They were gang bangers. I think the guys upstairs did it. One was shot in the head with a .357 Magnum. The other three were knifed, one in the back, 2 in the neck. No the guy who did that was the one holding the 10 inch tactical knife to your face. The one Falco killed with the sword.”
“I want to see him.”
“I do too, but not for the same reason.”
“Do you know where he lives?”
“I think so.”
“Can we go today.”
“Alright, but I’m not sure he’s up yet.”
Kowalski was a rational man. He dealt in facts not fantasy. The facts suggested a fantastic interpretation. That something happened to Rick ten years ago that turned him into Falco, a creature possessing superhuman powers with a thirst for blood and a sweet tooth for retribution.
Kowalski drove Julie to the Broderick Building. He found a parking space on the street near the front and got out. He and Julie walked to the main entrance and over to the elevator.
“Excuse me,” the man behind the desk in the lobby said. “There’s restricted access to this building. I’m afraid if a tenant doesn’t approve you. You can’t go up.”
Kowalski walked over to the reception desk and pulled out his badge.
“I’m here on official business and I could use your help.”
“We’re looking for someone and have a reasonable belief that he is a tenant here. Do you have a list of tenants?”
“Yes. But it’s confidential. Our owners have spent a considerable amount of money to guard their privacy.”
“Could you please share the list with me? Don’t make me get a warrant. I can’t stand the delay, BS and red tape that entails.”
The receptionist/security guard pulled up on his computer a password protected gateway. He typed the password and entered the page that showed the layout of the Broderick Building, the units occupied and their location.
Construction on the Broderick Building began in 1926 and was completed in 1928. It was 35 stories tall and at the time of its construction was the second tallest building in Detroit. It was originally named the Eaton Tower after Theodore Eaton, Jr., an importer and dealer in chemicals and dyes. The Eaton Tower was purchased in 1945 by David Broderick, an insurance broker who changed the name of the building. He created the Sky Top Club on the 33rd floor of the tower, which was a private club used for entertaining Broderick, his associates and guests.
“Can you print me a list?”
“It’s going to be pretty big. We have roughly 150 tenants.”
“Just give me the men and the corporations.”
“That will leave us with 117.”
“Big number,” he said glancing over at Julie. “That’s a lot of doors to knock on. You want to attack this the old-fashioned way?”
“Yes,” she said nodding. “I have to know more.”
“Okay. But first I need to send Falco a message.”
Kowalski pulled out his smart phone and typed an email to Falco.
We need to meet. It’s not what you think. I think we could help each other. I’m in the lobby. I’m prepared to knock on every door. You’d make the job easier if you’d tell me which number to come to. What you did last night? Amazing, incredible, admirable.
I was in my tomb when the email alert beeped. I had forgotten to leave my smart phone in the main apartment rooms. My eyes blinked open. I pulled it out of my pocket. It was a message from Kowalski. I read it and sighed.
This is accelerating faster than I’d expected. He’s going to find out soon enough. I might as well let him in and hear him out. I could still kill him. I’d never killed a cop before. But we’re talking about survival.
I sent him an email: 606. Was hoping for 666, but the room numbers don’t go up that high. I hit send.
Kowalski’s phone chirped. He opened the email and read it and showed it to the receptionist. “Looks like an invitation to me.”
“Okay. I’ll open the elevator for you and give you access to the sixth floor.”
“Thank you very much,” Kowalski said and smiled while walking with Julie toward the second elevator door which had opened for them. They got in, pressed 6 and rode up.
I pressed the switch to open my tomb and rose from my short slumber and climbed out. As I had slept in my clothes from last night I decided to change. I stripped naked, walked into the bathroom, rinsed my face, hands and arms with water and dried off with a hand towel. I then went to my dresser and selected black silk trousers, a crimson silk shirt with plunging neckline and a long flowing black silk robe. I pulled out Victor’s bloodstone ring and put it on the middle finger of my left hand.
I next walked over to the refrigerator, pulled out one of the bags of blood I kept, poured a juice glass full, drank it down, felt the energy course through my veins and waited.
I sat at my computer work station and brought up my web cams, watched and waited.
The elevator finally reached the sixth floor, stopped with a thunk and the door finally opened. Kowalski and Julie walked out.
“What room is it again?”
They walked down the hallway and arrived in front of room 606. Julie walked up to the door, reached her arms up, touching the top of the door, uncertain what to do. She looked for an eyehole, but saw nothing. She stepped back and spied a black dot above the door. She looked up with tearful eyes.
“Rick! Rick! Let me in! There’s so much I need to know. There’s so much I now remember. Please Rick! Please! You broke my heart! I moved on. I got the life I always wanted. But there’s something missing! Let me in and let me see you. Prove what I saw last night isn’t another hallucination!”
Kowalski stepped up and looked into the web cam silently.
I was stunned. Julie was here. The woman I had secretly protected for the last ten years. I had been her guardian angel or devil, whichever may be correct. I had protected her from dark forces and saved her from dark forces again. I loved her, but I knew I could not have her, unless it was in the loathsome bloodlust that now consumed my heart.
Kowalski. Sly Kowalski. He must have surmised that Julie would soften my black heart. I looked at him on the computer screen and saw an intelligence and cunning I had missed on our earlier meetings. Perhaps I was too arrogant: Victor’s flaw. Overconfident: Victor again.
No. I would listen to Kowalski and to Julie. I owed her the truth and Kowalski would know as well.
I walked to the front door and hit the switch that unlocked it. The security doors retracted. I opened the door and welcomed them in.
Julie approached me and attempted to embrace me. I glared at her and shook my head and motioned for everyone to enter the living room and take a seat.
“I could offer you coffee. I don’t drink it myself, but I bought some years ago. Keep it in the freezer just in case. I don’t have very many visitors.”
“Sure. Coffee sounds great,” said Kowalski.
“Me too,” Julie said.
“That settles it. Coffee for two.”
I opened the freezer and pulled out a can of coffee beans, measured 4 tablespoons into the grinder and ground it for about fifteen seconds. I reached into the cupboard and pulled out a filter, loaded the coffee from the grinder into it, put it into the filter basket, slid it in the coffee maker, filled it with about four cups of water and turned it on. I next put the coffee back into the freezer.
“Falco. Or should I call you Rick. Julie says that’s your real name. She’s got some catching up she wants to do. I have a proposal for you. It’s kind of crazy. But I think it might make sense for both of us.”
I looked at the two of them. I had conflicting emotions. The blood had toned down my blood lust, but it was always beneath the surface. I considered the two requests and chose Kowalski, as Julie’s presence here was so unsettling, I felt I had lost my mind.
“Lieutenant. Tell me your proposal.”
“Well. You possess an ability to see things no other man can see. You also have agility and strength that is beyond anyone I have ever heard of. I think we should work together. I seek the worst of the worst in society. From what I witnessed, so do you. I would never have believed it until I saw you leap through the third floor window of MADISON MANUFACTURING from the ground floor! And the way you dispatched the man with the knife who held Julie? He never had a chance. And I’m glad he didn’t.
“I want you to help me solve particularly heinous crimes. We try to serve society the best we can, but cases bog down in the courts, lawyers argue technicalities. Sometimes the innocent go to prison. Sometimes the guilty go free. I want you to help me balance the scales of justice so that the guilty never go free.”
“Interesting proposition. Something I’ve been practicing in the shadows for the last ten years. I do have a certain hunger that needs to be sated. Is that included in your proposition?”
The coffee was just finishing up. I got up and got out two mugs and poured each a cup and brought it to the coffee table. I then reached into the cupboard and pulled out some non-dairy creamer and sugar and placed those on the table too.
“”Not terribly fresh, I’m afraid.”
“It’s no problem. I drink it black,” Kowalski said.
Julie took some of the creamer and sugar and stirred it into her cup.
“And you, Julie?”
“I’ve pieced a lot of it together. I remember more than I’d let myself remember from the time with Victor. I know it was you who saved me. I know it was you who took Victor’s power and killed him and his servants and rescued me. I’m afraid I now know and maybe always knew why you disappeared. You broke my heart, Rick. I now know that I love you, that I’ve always loved you and will always love you. I want to kiss you the way we kissed before our ordeal. My heart will always be yours.”
I trembled at her words. This was more than I had ever dreamed I’d hope for. Love was not for my kind. Retribution and vengeance in the service of bloodlust was how I’d channeled my unholy desires. But the love of a woman? Impossible!
Yet I had been devoted to Julie and her happiness from before the time of my change. I couldn’t deny her then. I couldn’t deny her now.
“Julie. I have made many sacrifices for you. I am an creature that drinks the blood of the living. There is a thin veneer that keeps me from drinking yours. It’s a trick I play on myself. A sleight of mind. I take my ordinary unholy bloodlust and seek its satiation in the life of a killer. Most like me don’t know this trick. It’s far easier and more savage to feast on the first thing in front of you. I suppose I’m unusual for a vampire. I actually have standards and discipline!” I said while laughing aloud and shaking my head.
“Vampire?” Julie said.
“Afraid so. That’s what Victor and his crew were. They’d nearly killed me, but I now have this,” I said displaying the bloodstone ring on my left hand. “I also have Victor’s knife.”
I leapt up, pulled open a drawer in the living room and pulled out Victor’s enormous and jagged obsidian knife and showed it to them.
“Victor took it from an antique dealer he killed in Mexico City. It belonged to an Aztec High Priest who used it to cut the hearts out of sacrificial victims.”
Julie’s eyes widened as she looked on the obsidian knife. A look of terror flashed across her face. She calmed down.
“I remember. You killed them all. You had become as powerful as Victor and destroyed him. I can’t believe you’re as evil as him! There is good in you! I know it!”
“Good? Does good slaughter an entire room of human beings?”
“Give yourself a break, Falco. Those guys were scumbags and needed killing. You killed them and I say thank you very much.”
I dropped my hands and lowered my gaze and then looked up.
“You guys catch me at a particularly vulnerable time. I would like to get some more rest. Perhaps we can continue this chat in the evening?”
“Thanks for seeing us Falco. Remember my proposal.”
“Of course Lieutenant.”
They rose and let themselves out. I closed the security door and returned to my tomb.
I awoke at 8pm. The sun had gone down. It was my time now. I walked into my living room and approached my workstation, woke up the computer and logged into my email account. There was a fresh email from Kowalski. I clicked on it.
Falco. I have a case I need help with. I don’t care if I solve it. I just want the perp stopped. Can you meet me to discuss?
I typed a reply: How about the Starbucks at the end of my block? Say 9pm?
I hit send and waited.
A minute later I got his reply: I’ll be there.
This turn of events caused me some concern. I mean, I had this serious gig as a Psychic finder of lost children with a pot of blood at the end of the rainbow. Still I felt in danger. Kowalski was looking for me. I was the serial killer he was looking for and he now knew who I was. He couldn’t subdue me or overpower me, but he was still a danger to me. I decided to meet and hear him out. I dressed with my leather and shades, let myself out into the hallway and walked down the stairway to the lobby and into the night.
I walked down the street toward Starbucks and peered through the window. Kowalski was there. I walked inside and sat at the table opposite him.
“Thanks for coming, Falco. I need your help. The city needs your help.”
“What do you want from me?”
“I have one particular case that has haunted me for years. I’m in SID. I’m in charge of special investigations. Your case was on the front burner. I wanted to find you and arrest you, but now that I found you, I can’t deny that I admire you. That I approve of what you’ve done. You’ve provided justice that society has voted “present” on. I’ve closed the file on the bloodless beheadings file. There are a lot of cases in the back logs, but there’s one particular series of killings that has perplexed me for years. The fact that the victims were all prostitutes has led to a systematic neglect of their value as human beings, but I always felt that they deserved dignity, justice, vengeance and retribution. I think I have a fresh new victim tonight. Would you care to accompany me to the crime scene?”
“Have a trap for me? You could never hold me.”
“Falco. You misread me. I want your help. I want you to find the monster who’s been doing this and you know, do what you need to do.”
“So you won’t interfere?”
“That’s why we’re here. An impossible puzzle. All minds stumped. The brilliant genius Falco solves the case and eliminates the perp. Justice served.”
“What do you want from me?”
“Come with me to the latest crime scene.”
I got into Kowalski’s car and rode deep into the city. I paid no attention to where we were. We pulled up to a house surrounded by cop cars, lights flashing, yellow tape surrounding the doorway. Kowalski parked and got out. I followed suit and we walked to the front door.
“Hello?” the cop at the door said.
“Kowalski. Lieutenant SID. This is one of my cases. This is my consultant.”
He looked at Kowalski’s badge, at him and then at me skeptically. He dropped his eyes and lifted them up again and said “OK. Go on in.”
We walked through the front door and into the house. It was ugly. There was blood on the sofa and blood smeared on the walls.
Sergeant Perez was in the room.
“Sergeant. We meet again.” They shook hands.
“This is Falco. He’s my consultant.”
“OK Falco,” he said as he extended his hand in greeting. I took it.
Kowalski asked, “Where’s the body?”
He pointed at a door to a hallway and led us to the threshold.
“This is where I butt out. I don’t need to see it again,” Perez said.
We walked through it, turned left, walked to the back and into the last room.
There she was. Her face a mask of blood and exposed flesh. Her hair matted in blood. Her ribs bruised from savage blows. And the knife wounds. She had been stabbed multiple times. Once in the abdomen, once through each breast. Her face was slashed and the killer had plunged a knife into her torso about fifteen times. Clearly angry overkill.
“What do you want from me?” I asked.
“We’ve come upon these killings over the years. They seem to come in spurts. We had 12 in the 70s. 15 in the 90s. 6 in the early 2000s and now this. The first in a new series. I believe all the victims were killed by the same killer. But we are no closer to an identity than we were 40 years ago. I don’t really care who gets the credit. I want this animal killed.”
I dipped my hand into her blood and tasted it. It tasted good. My mind rushed out into the city. I came upon a bus driver. His name was Raymond Carver. He lived in the Mumford district. I saw his home and him in it. I saw him kill the prostitute and a parade of his victims rushed before my mind’s eye. A total of 79 came before me. Far more than Kowalski’s estimate. Each one a person with a mother and father and siblings and men who loved them and never forgot them, hoping they would return some day. 79 women with compromised dreams and tragic ends. They would never return. All at the hands of this beast: Raymond Carver. I looked at Kowalski and smiled. He nodded his head and I left.
Raymond Carver. He was black and 69 years old. He lived on Norwich Road between Oakdale Blvd. and Ridge Road.
Tonight I didn’t need my car. I levitated and floated toward his neighborhood. I reached about 1500 feet and began to descend and dropped into his back yard. I glided up to the second floor, found the outside door unlocked and entered the house.
It was a nice home. Lovely woodwork. I floated down the stairs toward the kitchen. There were children’s crayon artworks adorning the refrigerator door. A door opened. I ducked around a corner. A large black man came down the hallway and walked toward the refrigerator. He opened it, pulled out a large container of orange juice and drank in deep. I revealed myself. He eyes opened wide. He spilled some juice on his chest.
“What the fuck?”
“What are you doing in my house? How do you know my name?” he whispered.
“I know more than you could ever imagine, Raymond.”
“What are you talking about?”
“The women you’ve destroyed. The lives you’ve taken. Tonight’s the reckoning.”
“I haven’t hurt anyone. You’re fucking crazy. Look at my refrigerator door. I’m a grandpa!”
“There’re a lot of grandpas who’ve hurt people. I know you. I know your crimes.”
“I’ve committed no crimes!”
“Really? I was just at a crime scene where a nude prostitute had been stabbed 15 times at least. Her face slashed, her breasts stabbed. That wasn’t a crime?”
“I don’t know what you’re talking about. You have the wrong guy!”
“No, Raymond. I have the right guy. I tasted her blood and it led me to you. You’re definitely the right guy.”
Raymond began to get fidgety and clearly nervous. “What the fuck are you talking about. I’ve never killed anybody ever.”
“Never killed anybody ever?”
“Raymond. You’re lying.”
“I suppose this dialogue has become unnecessary.”
“In due time.” I said as I reached over to him and bit the flesh out of his neck and drank his blood down. I was incredibly sated. I severed his head and took it with me this time for the first time. I hoped to add a bit of mystery to the event. I dropped it in an alley across town. I then went home.
My phone rang. It was Kowalski.
“Was that good for you?” asked Kowalski.
“Yes. It was exactly what I had in mind.”
The next day I put on my sun block and visited the blood bank. I had a signed order from Dr. Carter of Detroit Metropolitan Hospital for 25 units of blood.
I thanked the clerk and took the product down to my Civic and drove back to my apartment.
I felt good. I had drunk my fill last night. I had dispatched a scumbag and now I had blood. A stopgap measure to sate my desires. At my core I still needed a kill for it to be complete. But the blood kept those desires at bay.
I logged onto my email account. There was a message from a woman in Ann Arbor pleading for help with her missing husband (probably ran off with another woman).
Another email from a man asking me to find his missing wife. (probably ran off with another man). And then there was an email from Marie Sanders. It melted my heart.
I am alone. My mom went out two nights ago with her boyfriend. She never came back. I called her boyfriend. He didn’t know where she was and didn’t care. I called the police. They said to wait and call back in 2 days, if she was still gone. They also said someone from social services will visit me.
I’m 9 years old. I love her very much. I need her. Help me. I’m afraid.
I sat there for several minutes contemplating the scenario before I responded.
I want to meet. I may not be able to help you, but I can learn your mother’s fate if you help me. I will waive my normal fee.
I looked at my message, slightly disgusted at my sentimentality. Still the girl needed help and I felt the urge to assist.
My email beeped. It was a reply from Marie.
Please help me. I live at the intersection of Court and 7th Street in Port Huron, MI.
I’ll be there in an hour.
I marched down to the parking garage and got into the Vanquish, I liked driving it to MADISON MANUFACTURING. I was going to enjoy driving it to Port Huron.
I pulled out my radar detector and put it on the dash and pulled into the street. I punched the accelerator to the floor. The engine roared to life and accelerated with great velocity. I took the I-375 which became the I-75, took exit 53B and got on the I-94 to Port Huron. I then opened it up. 90, 100, 110, 120, 130, 140. All the while looking for cops while passing cars with their horns blaring. I am going to help this little girl no matter what.
I reached a stretch of open road without cars in either direction and pounded the accelerator to the floor. 150, 160, 170, 180, 190, 200, 210, 220. The road was long and straight and I was exhilarated with the speed and the acceleration as the scenery flew past me at speeds I had never before experienced. I took my foot off the gas and started to coast. The sign said Port Huron. City Limits. I exited at Lapeer Avenue and took a right. I slowed until I got to 7th street and made a right. Four streets down was Court Street. I pulled over and parked. I had made the journey in forty minutes.
I walked down to the intersection. The home diagonally across from me had the porch light lit. The others were dark. I crossed the street twice and arrived in front of the house and walked up to the front door. I knocked. I listened intently. I heard the soft and light feet of a child walking toward me. There was a sound of something being dragged across the floor and the sound of metal colliding with wood. I heard something metal being pulled to the side. It was the light hole in the door and I sensed an eye viewing me.
“Who is it?” a high pitched, plaintive cry came.
“You came. Is it really you?”
“I drove too fast. But I liked it.”
“I’d like to go too fast some time.”
“Maybe some day I’ll take you for a drive.”
“I’d like that.”
“Is your mom home?”
“No.” She started to cry.
“Would you like me to come in and help you?”
The dead bolt was extracted and the door chain released. The door creaked open.
Before me was a most exquisite looking little girl. She would of course hate that description, being nine years old and all that. But she was so vulnerable and alone and losing her innocence that I felt my heart breaking for her.
“What’s your Mother’s name?”
“The way this usually goes is you get me a recent photograph of your Mom and a personal item. Something she wore often that might have her scent.”
“Are you a bloodhound?”
I laughed. “Something like that! Bring me those things and I’ll see what the next step will be.”
Marie left the room and was gone for about seven minutes. I was getting a bit antsy (I swear, I suffer from ADD), and then she returned. She handed me a picture of her mother in a picture frame.
“It’s from my room.”
She next handed me a red scarf.
“It’s her favorite.”
I smiled at her. “Thank you.”
She smiled back at me and sat down.
I looked at the picture and smelled the scarf. My spirit rushed out of the room, through the grid of the city until I came on to Peavey and 28th St., just south of South Park, north of Electric Avenue. I saw Marie’s mother. My heart sank. She was drunk and stoned. She was passed out. She was in no condition to come home to her beautiful little girl. I was angry with her.
“Marie,” I said. She looked up at me with hope, the hope only a nine year old can hold.
“Can you help her?”
“I don’t know.”
“She hurts herself a lot. Me too. I was hoping you could help. Can you?
I felt tears collecting in my eyes. “I’ll try, darling. I’ll try. No guarantees. People make bad decisions sometimes. Pride makes it hard for them to admit they made the wrong choice.”
She touched my hand. “It’s OK Falco. I am so happy you came here tonight to help me. No one else will.”
“I promise I won’t let you down.”
I left the house and stood on the porch. I set my mind’s eye on the location of Marie’s Mother. I levitated to 500 feet and flew toward Peavey and 28th. I descended slowly and arrived in the front yard. I walked over and looked into the front window, through the gap in the curtains. I saw her, passed out on the couch.
I sensed someone approaching from behind and elected to wait. There was the cocking of a gun that was pressed up against the base of my skull. I froze.
“What are you doing, fucker? Peeping? Wanna see someone fuck? Cocksucker! Fucking perv!” he said as he smashed his gun into my head. I fell down to the ground. That was my way of letting him know that he had won. Problem is, it didn’t hurt.
I feigned unconsciousness as he dragged me into the living room.
I looked at the unconscious woman and saw her chest was heaving. She was drawing breath. She was alive.
The man who had smashed his gun into my head and accused me of sexual improprieties was in the kitchen. I contemplated the blow to my head. His hand had delivered the blow. All of a sudden I was at his high school. He was fucking. The girl was screaming at him to stop. It was rape. I fast forwarded to college. He offered cocaine to a girl on one condition, that she blow him. He then smashed her in the face. I fast forwarded to the present. He had a woman on the top of a skyscraper. He angrily threw her over the edge to her death. I was seriously disliking this guy.
I slowly rose.
He turned and saw me. “What the fuck?”
He pulled out his gun and fired it at me. But I wasn’t there anymore. I was above him and diving for his neck, which I bit into, slurping his gushing blood and snapping his wrist holding the gun, tossing it harmlessly to the right while enjoying his slow demise.
He was dead. I severed his head with my obsidian knife, took it into the back yard and threw it into a trash can I conveniently found there, and walked back inside.
Marie’s mother was comatose. I touched her hand. Nothing.
I punched in a web search for emergency rooms. The St. Joseph Mercy at 2601 Electric Ave. was the closest. I activated the GPS app I had downloaded into my smart phone, entered the address and pressed start. The cool thing about it is it didn’t give turn by turn instructions. It just displayed the destination and my proximity to it. Since I wasn’t driving a car it was perfect. I picked up Marie’s mother and walked into the backyard and began to rise slowly into the night sky and ascended. The GPS informed me I was nearing my destination. I saw the hospital and observed a group of trees about a block south of Electric Avenue and another block west. I descended with Marie’s mother in my arms amidst some trees and carried her toward the hospital emergency room.
I walked up to the emergency room entrance. The automatic door opened and I walked in. There were couches lining the walls interspersed with chairs. CNN was playing on the TV. There were 3 people waiting. I lay Martha on one of the couches and walked to the receptionist’s area and knocked on her frosted glass window.
“Excuse me. I saw you come in. We’re a little understaffed right now. Please take a seat and someone will see to you and your friend.”
“This woman needs immediate medical care. Her name is Martha Sanders. I’m leaving.”
The receptionist reached for the phone started dialing. “Excuse me sir. You’ll have to wait.”
Probably dialing 911. I walked out and rushed instantly to the group of trees that had shielded my arrival. They now shielded my departure as I returned to the intersection of 7th and Court. I descended quietly and walked to Marie’s door and knocked. She came to the door and let me in.
“I have news for you.”
“Yes?” she said, with pleading eyes, tears starting to form.
“I found her.”
“Where is she?”
“You were right. She isn’t well. I took her to the hospital, St. Joseph Mercy Hospital.”
“Is she going to be ok?”
“I don’t know.” I brought the listing back up on my smart phone and wrote down the phone number and handed her the piece of paper.
“Call this number. Tell them who you are and who your mother is and that you know she is there. They’ll be able to help you.”
“Can I hug you?”
She walked toward me trembling and reached out to me as I kneeled to be near her. She wrapped her arms around my neck. I felt her tears streaming down her face, wetting mine. Her stifled sobs gaining power and then fully convulsing her body. I patted her on the back and kissed her forehead.
“You see? Everything is going to be OK. Call the number and let them know who you are. I need to be going now.”
I rose and stepped back from her and walked to the front door. I opened it and walked outside.
“Thank you Falco! I love you!”
“I love you too Marie,” I had to stifle a tear of my own. I walked to my car, got in it, started it up and started to drive back to Detroit. All the while I could see Marie silhouetted in the open doorway watching me leave.