By: Martin Linson
With a soft and trembling voice the girl finally spoke, “K..kk…Kimmy.” she quickly curled up into warmth of Ric’s chest as his arms reflexively wrapped around her.
“Well Kimmy, such a pretty name, I’m Ric, and this is my friend Jake.” He smiled for probably the first time in centuries, and realized that it was actually more genuine than one might think. Although he didn’t want to suddenly get his hopes up, taking her under his protection didn’t have a great track record.
She smiled big as her eyes brightened up, and again with a soft voice, less stutter this time “H..Hi Ric, and J..Jake.”
Jake smiled and waved at her as he knelt down next to them, “Hi there Kimmy! You don’t have to worry anymore, you’re safe with us now.”
Ric’s gaze hadn’t moved from Kimmy like hers did towards Jake as he spoke. His vision moved to just the edge of her head, letting his eyes fall out of focus, as he focused on her aura. Her aura faded into his sight as he dug deep searching for why demons would want her. Particular signs he was looking for, ones he’d missed or ignored in the past. As he looked, all he could find was innocence. Innocence unlike he’d seen before, yet he did catch at the very fringes a light tinge. Tinges that he did recognize, it was influence, but resisted influence.
“Ric, man dude what’s up?!” Jake reached toward him as he was coming out of his focus.
He snatched Jake’s wrist out of the air quicker than his eyes could even track, “Don’t touch me, that’s what’s up Jake.” He turned back to Kimmy with a smile, “Kimmy, who is it? Who is it that’s hurting you, that’s…”
“Something’s wrong with Daddy…” she cut him off.
“Daddy is hurting you?” Ric asked as Jake knelt back down to their level to listen.
She shook her head fast, “No, he’s changed Mommy, and they make me… feel funny sometimes…”
“They’re touching you, hurting you?” Jake began to visibly become outraged.
Again she shook her head, “No, I don’t know… I just… feel funny…”
Ric closed his eyes, knowing what the poor little thing meant. “Does Daddy say things you don’t understand now?”
This time she nodded, “He talks funny, not his voice.” Jake’s expression just pale as he looked to Ric.
Nodding “As I thought… Your Dad is…” He sighed deep, “Your Dad is gone Kimmy”
“He’s my new Daddy, my Daddy and Mommy didn’t want me. That’s what my new Daddy told me.” Jake’s rage began to burn once again when he heard that.
“They adopted you?” Ric asked, to which she nodded in response. “Was Daddy always like this?”
“No… he… he started being different long time ago. When I was three, I’m five now.” She said very matter of factly.
“And he’s just gotten worse hasn’t he?” His arms comforting her now, as he wiped a tear away from her eye, as she nodded. “Well then… I guess your new friend has some things to take care of, doesn’t he?” He smiled down at her.
Jake stood up and opened his mouth to talk before Ric was on his feet handing Kimmy over to him.
“As much as I’d love your company, you’re just going to get in my way, and be another weakness that can be exploited. The best place for her and you is here. They won’t know she’s here yet. If there were any that ran they won’t go back to base until tomorrow night to shake anything that might be tailing them. I have now, or I’ll have an small army to fight I’m sure.”
Jake nodded as he took Kimmy from Ric. “Alright,” he nodded to Kimmy, “it’s alright Kimmy, I’ll keep you safe until Ric comes back.”
Ric glanced down both ends of the alley, “I want you to hide in my shelter, I’ll know you two are safe so long as you’re in here. And Kimmy, do you know where you live? Where your Daddy is?”
Her eyes started to well up with tears as they became glassy and big.
“You’re not going back I promise. I need to go there so they won’t look for you again Kimmy. Otherwise they will keep looking. You don’t have to tell me, if you think of where you live, and want me to know, I can sense it with your permission.”
She nodded, as Ric placed his hand on her forehead and closed his eyes. Jake’s mouth open once more, as he was now forgetting questions because of so many more he wanted to ask.
“Thank you Kimmy, I see it.” Opening his eyes, he smiled down at her, “it’s going to be ok, you can’t stay with me, but I will make sure you’re safe, I promise you that.” He stood up scanning their surroundings once again.
“Ok… I’m sorry… but mind reading now?!?” Jake was on the verge of losing it but doing his best to hold it together for Kimmy at this point.
“Jake… No… It’s more a sense and only as I said if the person wants to. I can only see memories they want to show me. Anyway, I need to go. You two, stay here in my shelter, and I’ll be back. Nothing will happen, when Matt is back, fill him in.” He smiled down at Kimmy, brushing tears from her cheeks. “You’re going to be fine, I promise.” He hoped this wasn’t an empty promise.
Ric reached the street as he could see the house from her memory three houses down. If he hadn’t known every street in the city he wouldn’t have known where she lived. Being immortal had some perks. The block was dark, being a quarter after two in the morning at this point he wasn’t surprised. There was a curtain covered window or two that had a faint glow of a screen on, but nothing more than that.
He walked up to the house turning to it and opening his senses. Opening forward, trying to feel what might be ahead of him. His sense expanded enveloping the house as his focus searched room to room, attic to garage and crawl space, only to pull back to himself. ‘What the fuck…’ he said to himself under his breath.
Letting out a drawn out sigh, “Fuck it…” he said as he walked up to the door, bringing his foot up to kick it from its frame as he paused. Bringing his foot down, he cocked his head to one side like a curious animal. His hand wrapped around the doorknob as he turned it, and the door, opened to his surprise. Letting the nob go he glanced into the room from the open doorway only to see an empty living room.
As he stepped into the house, he could feel the heaviness in the air. The thickness of negative energy, he knew it was here, and it had to be rather powerful to cover its tracks like this. Movement from the kitchen caught his attention but instead of turning to it he let his peripheral pick it up, and he saw the shadowed outline of a man. Not sensing anything from any other direction he turned to face the shadow.
“Now what would someone like you want with some Earthly family; that old bit about souls or something?” Ric said, keeping his awareness open, sensing this is all off. “What? You got nothing? Cat got your tongue?” Ric chuckled to his own horrible joke. “Come on, what the fuck?” his arms raised up as he questioned.
The shadowed man grinned widely, a bright grin showing through the darkness almost, followed by a deep, sickly gravelly voice, “I never thought I would run into, the first so soon.”
The voice burned bright an old memory, Bahlreq, his focus was broken as the shadow vanished and was replaced with a charging screaming woman wielding a butcher’s cleaver. Sidestepping the woman he turned first to the kitchen, after not finding the shadowed Bahlreq he turned to the woman.
Spinning on her heel she corrected her attack toward Ric once again. He caught her hand mid swing flipping her over him and releasing. He turned to find her landing on her feet facing him once again.
“Ah, I see he’s found more pieces of crap to follow him?” Ric sneered at the woman.
Letting out a guttural demonic growl she leapt at him swinging so fast no human eye would be able to see the movements. Standing his ground Ric dodged every swipe with the cleaver, and with each swing, her speed increased, as did his to match. Her frustration obviously increasing as snarls began accompanying every missed swing.
Faster than even she could see, Ric’s hand sliced through her neck like a knife. Moving so fast, she blinked at him, and then her head fell to the floor, followed by her lifeless body. The horrific screaming of a Demlo being ripped from this realm back to the pit could be heard by every dog, cat, and psychic in the surrounding two blocks.
Without hesitating Ric flew through the kitchen scanning at impossible speed combing the house to find nothing. Not even a clue as to where he could have gone. Glaring and the ground Ric walked out of the house, took a few steps back, and with a slight running start bound impossibly high into the air towards his alley.
Kimmy had dozed off as Jake held her. He realized she probably hadn’t slept well in a while. Calming himself before his anger took him again; he couldn’t tolerate child abusers of all types. Jake breathed in deep through his nose, and exhaling slowly through his mouth, the breathing techniques that Matt had taught him. They worked better than he’d expected at keeping him in check.
Jake woke up, having dozed off himself from his breathing technique, and swearing silently to himself. Kimmy hadn’t woken up thankfully, as she was curled up against him still. He breathed a sigh of relief, but then heard someone outside in the alley; sounds of someone looking around.
Feeling a panic come on Jake tried to think of what he could do. He could run, hold her tight to his chest, open the flap and just make a run for it. That could work, his heart rate started racing as he moved the two of them to the flap to peak through.
The flap flew open as Matt stood before them, “What the fuck are you doing in Ric’s place?”
“Fucking shit Matt!” Jake exclaimed as his heart dropped in his chest and was washed over with relief immediately afterwards. Catching his breath, “Ric… Ric went to her… place”
Nodding as he finally caught his breath Jake responded, “Yes, we’d get in the way, even you would with all your training. He said her adopted parents are something only he can deal with, those Demlo, Demons or something I think he said or was implying. Said to protect her and hide in his shelter, and fill you in when you got back.”
“So… what? We’re just supposed to sit here and wait for him to get back?” Matt appeared rather irritated at the idea.
“Well yeah, that’s crazy shit man… you want to get involved in that?” Jake leaned back into the shelter as he lowered his voice to keep from waking Kimmy.
Matt squatted down next to the shelter, “well having more than just himself is better either way.”
“Ohhh, is that my little lovely lost Kimmy?” A deep voice that sounded like fear was heard, as they both shifted their attention to behind Matt, the color in their faces leaving as they saw who spoke. The followers never ran, they’d waited, and started landing in the alley from the roofs, surrounding them all.
To be continued…