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Robb J.D. - Chaos-In-Death

Robb J.D. - Chaos-In-Death


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Published by Carina Florin
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Published by: Carina Florin on Mar 23, 2014
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In Death Series ============ Nora Roberts ============ ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Chaos in Death =================== Chapter 1 He found life in death. And delight in the whirlwind of fear and fright. To hunt to steal the light the life the blood the soul. !ell he"d been born for it. It #ade hi# laugh to dan$e around the #adness of his $reating $ape swirling%and wasn"t that a wonderful tou$h%legs &i$&ing in a 'o(ful 'ig. )*en the sound of his own laughter deep and ri$h and free thrilled hi# #ade hi# laugh all the harder. He was ali*e. +And (ou"re not,+ He hopped s&ipped leaped o*er the three bodies he"d arranged on the floor. Tilting his head he grinned at his handiwor&. He"d laid the# out so the( sat%well slu#ped but that was dead for (ou%in a line against the wall. -itiful spe$i#ens reall( this trio of 'un&ies who"d barel( had the wit or the will to put up a fight. .ut /od &new a #an had to start so#ewhere. Still their fear was his now and their tears their $ries and pleas% all his. It tasted so deli$ious. He needed #ore of $ourse so #an( #ore. .ut he"d #ade a #ost e0$ellent start. No #ore pla(ing b( the rules no sir, No #ore 1r. /ood /u(. .oring gu(. He patted his own $hest. +I feel li&e a whole new #an.+ Chu$&ling he stowed the blood( s$alpel the *ials all the lo*el( spe$i#ens in his &it. And inspiration stru$&. Cli$h2d3 he as&ed hi#self his head tipping fro# side to side his glea#ing red e(es bulging with glee and #adness as he s$anned the roo# the bodies the walls. 1a(be #a(be but irresistible,

After dipping a glo*ed finger into a pool of $ongealing blood he $o#posed his #essage on the ding( wall. He had to dip ba$& into the well% ha-ha-ha%se*eral ti#es but the ti#e was well worth it. To who# it #a( $on$ern4 -lease ta&e out the trash. Don"t forget to re$($le properl(, 5h his bell( hurt fro# laughing. He pressed a hand to it nearl( snagging one of the long pointed nails that stabbed through the glo*e. Then found hi#self hesitating before signing his na#e. He &new his na#e. 5f $ourse of $ourse he did. 6or a #o#ent his glee teetered toward fur( his laughter toward guttural grunts. Then all righted again. He did another 7ui$& 'ig dipped his finger again. Than& (ou for (our attention to this #atter. Dr. Chaos. -erfe$t. Absentl( he su$&ed the blood and gri#e fro# his finger and read the #essage o*er twi$e. Ti#e to go he de$ided. Things to do. And he was absolutel( fa#ished. He pi$&ed up his &it lifted an ar# in salute. +Adieu #es a#is,+ 5n a last $a$&le of laughter he turned swirling the $ape%he 'ust lo*ed doing that%as he s&ipped to the ba$& roo# and $li#bed out the window. He $ouldn"t re#e#ber e*er ha*ing #ore fun. And $ouldn"t wait to do it all again.


9ieutenant )*e Dallas studied the s$ene. Cops saw it all but there was alwa(s so#ething new so#e fresh brutalit( e*en in the d(ing su##er of :;<; to stret$h the boundaries of all. The roo# stan& of blood%so #u$h blood%and death of fresh pu&e and piss. .lood soa&ed into one of the board-thin #attresses sho*ed into a $orner. 5ne of the three *i$ti#s had died there she thought. The #iddle one she $on$luded the bla$& #ale age as (et undeter#ined with #ultiple stab wounds and a #issing left ear. .eside )*e her partner breathed slowl( in and out through her teeth. +If (ou"re going to hurl -eabod( do it outside.+ +I"# not going to hurl.+ .ut it $a#e out as a plea rather than a state#ent.

)*e shifted her ga=e studied -eabod(. The short 'aunt( flipp( tail she"d pulled her dar& hair into loo&ed distin$tl( out of pla$e now that her s&in held a faint green $ast. -eabod("s dar& e(es slightl( unfo$used held their line of sight a few in$hes abo*e the bodies. +I 'ust need a #inute for e*er(thing to settle.+ +!hat was this pla$e3+ )*e as&ed. +It used to be retail spa$e.+ -eabod( still held her --C and her hand was stead( enough. +Apart#ents abo*e three le*els. Slated for rehab.+ -eabod( shut her e(es for a #o#ent. +6ind out who owns it how long it"s been shut down. Ta&e it outside. !e need the data + )*e said before -eabod( $ould ob'e$t. +/et the data.+ !ith a nod -eabod( slipped out the door to where the unifor#s responding to the nine-one-one had $ordoned off the sidewal&. !ith her hands and feet alread( sealed her re$order engaged )*e stepped around and o*er the debris of shattered bottles s$attered $lothes trash a bro&en $hair to the bodies. Her golden brown e(es weren"t unfo$used but $op flat. +Three *i$ti#s two #ale one fe#ale $arefull( arranged to sit ba$&s against the front wall. .la$& #ale $enter #ultiple stab wounds torso shoulders ar#s legs ne$& and fa$e. 9eft ear re#o*ed. Cau$asian fe#ale on the left appears to ha*e been strangled. 1i0ed-ra$e #ale right of $enter bludgeoned. 9eft e(e re#o*ed.+ Hell of a part( she thought and let out a breath that fluttered the bangs on her short $ap of brown hair. +Three #attresses so#e bedding $lothes #ini friggie batter( la#p two $hairs two tables. It appears all three *i$s flopped here. 1one( s$attered around what shows loo&s to be about a grand. So robber("s out. 6irst on s$ene as$ertained for$ed window rear of building street le*el. -robable point of entr(.+ She too& the fe#ale first hun&ered down on her long legs opened her field &it. +6e#ale also suffered blows to the fa$e &nees. Hard blow to the &nees + she #ur#ured. +-ipe bat board%ta&e her down%a $ouple pun$hes. 1anual strangulation.+ She ran the *i$ti#"s prints. +6e#ale is identified as >ennifer Darnell age twent(-four. Current address listed on !est Si0teenth. /ot a sheet in$luding 'u*ie. -ri#aril( illegals busts.+ -eabod( $a#e ba$& in. +The !hitwood /roup bought the propert( about se*en #onths ago + she said. +6ro# what I $an tell the building was $onde#ned a little o*er a (ear ago. -er#its for rehab pending.+ +5&a(. So the &iller or &illers too& his ear his e(e. Isn"t there a sa(ing% what is it3 Hear no e*il see no e*il . . .+ Carefull( )*e opened >ennifer Darnell"s #outh. +?eah spea& no e*il. He $ut out her tongue.+ +>esus.+

+There had to be two &illers #a(be three. Chaos #a( 'ust be a do$tor or at least ha*e #edi$al training. +Hear-no has thirt(.+ . It $ould be the na#e of a group.+ )*e loo&ed around the roo#. H## T5D two hundred thirt(. Chaos.+!or& see-no gu( -eabod(. !ith a nod )*e rose and #o*ed to the #iddle *i$ti#. Dr.+ +He( bet (our own ass.+ +Ai0 has si0t(. )nough for rape.+ She loo&ed up at the #essage on the wall. . The &iller went at hi# first + she $ontinued. Chaos. +No bruising bleeding tearing I $an see but the 1) will deter#ine se0ual assault.+ )*e fit on #i$rogoggles engaged their light to peer into the *i$ti#"s #outh. 5ne for ea$h *i$3+ +1a(be. +I bet (our ass he did. +She"s wearing a ninet(-da( $hip fro# /et Straight.ut onl( one ta&es $redit3+ As )*e had -eabod( studied the blood( #essage.two. +He"s the biggest of the three.+ She sat ba$& on her heels tried to see it. T5D on Darnell two hundred thirt(-eight.+ )*e $onsidered it while she used the gauges. +1ostl( I thin& he li&es to 'o&e.+ Struggling to find her own good stead( hand -eabod( opened her &it. The #iddle gu(3 The &iller too& hi# out where he la(.+ +If there was onl( one wh( didn"t she run li&e hell when he"s stabbing the be'esus out of that gu( or beating the $rap out of Ai03+ +Too& her out blows to the &nees.+ -eabod( held up the $hip.+ )*e lifted the he# of the short nightshirt.+ )*e lifted the $heap thin $hain around Darnell"s bruised ne$&. I need ID T5D. +Age twent(. @ses a &nife or a s$alpel. He swit$hes to bludgeoning for the other #ale. +?eah it $ould. +That"s what this is.+ +So he too& so#e ti#e with Darnell.i$&ford + she said when she"d run his prints. She was either alread( dead or un$ons$ious when he too& her tongue and he had a good stead( hand. Three distin$t #ethods of &illing.ut (eah it $ould be #ore than one. +Dr.ut he doesn"t use it on the others e0$ept for the re#o*al. He did what he wanted too& what he wanted now he"s telling us to $lean up the #ess. That sa#e pre$ision surgi$al re#o*al on the ear. +Ta&ing the bod( parts those parti$ular bod( parts do (ou thin& ritual3+ +-ossibl(. Didn"t die first. .+ +Ai0 T5D two hundred twent(. Real funn( gu(.+ +Cob( Ai0 age twent(-si0 + -eabod( told her. . It"s a lot of wor& for one #an. Dr. +Clean $ut neat and tid(. Shattered &nee$aps. !ilson .

+I need (ou to tell #e what happened + )*e began. +>en didn"t show up for wor&. Do (ou &now Dr. And she and Cob( and !il the( go to the #eeting after. .+ +1issed that + -eabod( #uttered. . Her puff( pale green e(es sta(ed dr( and fo$used on )*e. .ut I"# onl( seeing one t(pe of blood( footprint and it"s too #u$h to swallow the( all wore the sa#e si=e and t(pe of shoe.+ +I thin& that"s an interesting gap of ti#e between T5Ds.i$&ford put up a fight. Sa( three &illers one for ea$h *i$. . I want to tal& to the nine-one-one $aller. 5ne of the unifor#s had gotten her so#e water. The one off Canal. . It $ould be #ore than one. 5ne with a $ool head one 'ust batshit $ra=(. Her throat $li$&ed on e*er( swallow. Di#atto3+ . 5ne stabs one beats one strangles.+ +.ut to )*e"s relief it loo&ed li&e Batrina had $ried herself out. Tea#wor&. I wor& at the free $lini$ on Canal. +1a(be there"s #ore and I"*e #issed the#.ut the #essage is 'o&e( whi$h reads $ontrol and intelle$t.+ +9ouise Di#atto"s $lini$3+ +?es. . I thin& the sa#e hand did the re#o*als an e0perien$ed hand stead(.+ +?eah. +It loo&s li&e .+ 888 Batrina Chu hun$hed in the ba$& of the bla$&-and-white her fa$e white as death her e(es puff( fro# weeping. The destru$tion of the s$ene is o*er the top and that reads rage.ut this doesn"t loo& li&e tea#wor& + )*e said s$anning the roo# again. +Chaos.+ +?ou wor&ed with her3+ +I"# her sponsor. Ta&e it a $ouple wa(s. 5r #a(be the others were #ore $areful.+ She gestured to the #essage on the wall. .ut (ou don"t thin& so.+Defensi*e wounds hands ar#s. +9et"s get the# bagged tagged and transported. !e"*e got serious o*er&ill on the two #ales and #anual strangulation%whi$h is personal and inti#ate%on the fe#ale. Could be the tea# 'ust went to town on the pla$e. She *olunteers on the brea&fast shift at /et Straight.

+ +Arianna. +I"# an aide there.+ +The( $ouldn"t pa( the rent. She got Cob( to $o#e in. +I &now so#e people thin& on$e a 'un&ie but the( were tr(ing. +She was happ(. Rosenthall3+ +He and Dr. >en she wanted to get $lean sta( $lean. I $ouldn"t see in the window. 1a(be three I guess. I"# stud(ing to be a nurse. He and Arianna basi$all( fund the organi=ation. . The( wanted to turn their li*es around. I went b( Sli$e last night for ta&eout and we tal&ed awhile. >en ne*er told #e about an( trouble not this &ind.+ The $onne$tion see#ed to stead( her.+ . Cob( got a 'ob there deli*ering and !il was wor&ing as a sto$& bo( at the twent(-fourCse*en a $ouple blo$&s awa(. She"s a therapist. 9ast night she told #e the( had nearl( two thousand in the rent &itt( so the( were going to start to loo& for one. !e hit it off.+ +!hat about people the( asso$iated with when the( were using3+ +I don"t &now. +I thought #a(be the("d ta&en a slide.ut she didn"t show up not to ser*e brea&fast not for the #eeting.+ A tear lea&ed through after all. Nobod( was using the pla$e and she said Dr. .+ -ressing her lips together she shoo& her head. Neither did Cob( or !il. . I saw. And she started wor&ing at Sli$e%a pi==a 'oint%about two #onths ago. . Rosenthall. Rosenthall said it would be o&a( for a few wee&s. I didn"t want to thin& it.+ +Dr.+ +I ha*e her li*ing on !est Si0teenth. The("re engaged.+ +Do (ou &now an(bod( who"d want to hurt her or Cob( or !il3+ +No. She"d help ser*e brea&fast ta&e in the #eeting then stud( for an hour or two%Arianna hoo&ed her up with an online business $ourse%then go to Sli$e if she had the lun$h shift go into the Center%the !hitwood Center%if she had the dinner shift. It happens. The( started s7uatting here a $ouple wee&s ago. It"s boarded and grilled but >en ga*e #e a &e( so I opened it and . She ne*er #issed the #orning #eeting. The( were $lean and tr(ing to sta( that wa(.ut I did thin& it so I $a#e b( on #( wa( to wor& to $he$& on her. She donates her ti#e too. The( were going to pool their #one( and rent a pla$e. I &no$&ed. Arianna and Dr.+ +!hitwood. >en $a#e into /et Straight a $ouple #onths ago and I offered to be her sponsor.+?eah. She was reall( wor&ing it (ou &now3 Reall( tr(ing hard. I got worried. She was happ(. I reall( trusted she"d tag #e if she got in a situation. She didn"t answer her "lin&. She was happ(. Di#atto donate ti#e to /et Straight.

And see so#ebod( repaired and painted this $hair. The("re on their wa(. It"s not dust( or dirt(.ag that for the sweepers.+ . +Credits $ash e*en loose $hange.+ +9ieutenant3+ 5ne of the unifor#s stepped in.+ +Beep $he$&ing. He or the( didn"t $are about the #one(.+ +Ta&es the "lin&s but lea*es the s$rat$h. . An(thing pop fro# the $an*ass3+ +Not (et.+ +It"s sad + -eabod( #ur#ured.+ He held up the $lear prote$ti*e $oat $o*ered with blood li&e the ones she"d seen $ountless do$tors wearing.+ +/ood.----------------------------------------Chapter : +Run Rosenthall and !hitwood + )*e told -eabod(. The &illers #ust not ha*e used it. +!e found this in the re$($ler out ba$&. And the sweepers are on their wa(.ut the *i$s the( &ept it $lean.+ She po&ed through a bit.+ +I #ean if (ou o*erloo& the blood and the #ess.+ +Dr. +It"s going to ta&e the# a while to sort through this #ess.+ +9et"s go see if the do$tor"s in. +. +And get what (ou $an on the Canal Street /et Straight. An(wa( it was $lean. The floor"s $lean. The( weren"t *er( good at it + -eabod( added as she pi$&ed up one of the bro&en legs.+ +The( probabl( had the#%who doesn"t3%so the &iller probabl( too& the#. He wor&s pri#aril( out of the !hitwood Center a fa$ilit( for the stud( of addi$tion with a health $enter and *isitor"s lodging atta$hed. Rosenthall -eabod(. >ustin Rosenthall thirt(-eight.+ +Beep on that too. +>ust one3+ +So far sir. He spe$iali=es in $he#i$al addi$tions%and was gi*en a grant b( the !hitwood /roup for sa#e%$ause rehabilitation.ut the( tried. +The( were (oung and tr(ing to reboot their li*es. I"# not finding an( Dlin&s.+ +Alread( on it.+ +Suddenl( I 7uestion (our $leanliness standards. And if he too& the "lin&s he either had $onta$t with the# or thought the( tal&ed about hi# to ea$h other or so#eone else *ia "lin&. No $ri#inal. . The( &ept the floor $lean. And when I $he$&ed out the bathroo# I guess it"s an e#plo(ee"s restroo# deal. >ust the &ill.+ )*e wal&ed ba$& into the building. The( had a good $han$e of #a&ing it too.

A studl( saint. Chase died at the age of nineteen. He"s got the $onne$tion he"s got the s&ill and a$$ording to our sour$e he"s the one who ga*e the# the green light to s7uat there. He and Arianna are 7uite the ite#. She"s a loo&er. No flash )*e noted no gloss%at least not on the e0terior%so the building sat $o#fortabl( in the old 1eatpa$&ing Distri$t. +Has nu#erous awards for ser*i$e and inno*ations in his field. /a*e that up + )*e $o##ented +to wor& with 'un&ies. The wedding"s set for ne0t #onth billed as the wedding of the (ear.+ -eabod( slid into the $ar as )*e too& the wheel. She was si0teen. If he"s so saintl( wh( didn"t he float the# a $ouple #onths" rent3+ +That"s a good 7uestion.+ +A surgeon. Donates ti#e to the Canal Street Clini$ /et Straight and others. The !hitwood Center opened three (ears later. That"s wh( we ha*e 'obs. +I got lots of pops on gossip and so$iet( pages. Honest Dallas fro# what I"# reading here the gu( sounds li&e a saint. Da( in and da( out seeing the# listening to the# treating the# hearing bullshit out of the#. Rosenthall had a sister.+ 888 5ld ti#e-faded bri$& housed the !hitwood Center. Saint Studl( of Rosenthall.+He"s *er( studl( + -eabod( added and $ontinued to wor& her handheld as the( wal&ed to the $ar. She"s thirt(-four a therapist again spe$iali=ing in addi$tions. 9i*ing"s #ess( and e*er(one li*ing has so#e dirt( little se$ret. . . +5h listen to this. She #ade it to twent(-two before she 5D"d. Swit$hed his fo$us after his sister"s death. 6ro# the fluff pie$es I"# s&i##ing it loo&s li&e the( #et four (ears ago and were engaged last fall. 5r the !hitwood /roup%headed b( her parents%is. So#ething $ould snap. 5D"d. oh she had a brother. Not Roar&e ri$h + -eabod( said referring to )*e"s husband +but she"s up there.e$ause dead"s the onl( wa( (ou $an pull it off. 9i&e his sister li&e his fian$2e"s brother. He was on tra$& to be$o#ing a topflight $ardia$ surgeon.+ +Do (ou &now wh( the saints are all dead3+ +!h(3+ +.+ +A dirt( little se$ret that has a renowned and studl( do$tor slaughtering three re$o*ering addi$ts3+ +So#ebod( did it. And reall( reall( ri$h.+ +It"s one I"# going to as& hi#. And . .+ +C(ni$ alert.

Then the( $a#e to the garden bree=ewa(. The #an earl( thirties $ontinued to wor& on his $o#p while the wo#an a few (ears (ounger with a prett( fa$e and earnestl( wel$o#ing e(es s#iled in their dire$tion. 5ne of his interns or his assistant should be able to help (ou.+ The wo#an didn"t so #u$h as blin& at the badge. Co#fortable $hairs si#ple art so#e plants ga*e off the at#osphere of a li*ing area rather than a waiting one despite the re$eption $ounter #anned b( two people. +!e need to spea& with Dr.+ +I see. The lobb( area was large and 7uietl( furnished. )*e noted the se$urit( $a#eras and the $ard slots and pal# plates on so#e of the doors. +/ood #orning.elow through treated glass a $entral fountain gurgled in a fantas( of flowering plants shrubs trees in riotous bloo#. How $an we help (ou toda(3+ )*e approa$hed the $ounter laid her badge on it.ut in a reall( prett( wa(. The( passed people in lab $oats in street wear in sharp suits and in tattered pants. +.!ith -eabod( she wal&ed in the front entran$e.+ +Than&s. +The wor& the("*e done on the old building.+ . . +That sa(s "!e"re reall( ri$h philanthropists " + )*e $o##ented. +?ou"ll want to ta&e the right $orridor go o*er the garden bree=ewa( then ta&e the first turn to the left. !hite stone ben$hes offered seating bri$&ed paths wound in an in*itation to stroll.+ As )*e angled left the wo#an $ontinued. It"s $o#fortable and it doesn"t shout "!e"re reall( ri$h philanthropists."+ 5n the se$ond floor the( wal&ed b( se*eral doors all dis$reetl( shut with their purposes or a do$tor"s na#e on a pla7ue. The( passed a nurse"s station and the waiting area a$ross fro# it.+ +Stairs to the left ele*ators to the right.+ +It"s ni$e wor& + -eabod( said as the( started up. +Is the do$tor e0pe$ting (ou3+ +I $ouldn"t sa(. Bept its $hara$ter.+ +5&a(.+ +His offi$es are on the se$ond floor east. Rosenthall.

He wore a standard white lab $oat o*er 'eans and a red Tshirt that as&ed +1( petri dish or (ours3+ +5ffi$ers3+ +9ieutenant Dallas and Dete$ti*e -eabod(.+ +I reall( #ust insist (ou ta&e us to his lab.The( #ade the left into a s#all blue and $rea# re$eption area.+ )*e tapped her badge.+ The wo#an didn"t loo& pleased b( the answer and re#inded )*e of Dr.+ . The do$tor will see (ou.+ )*e held up her badge.+ After another tap she spo&e to )*e. +?es -a$h would (ou tell Dr. No the( won"t sa(. The #an who $a#e out had deep brown s&in and large hea*(-lidded e(es nearl( as bla$& as his $rown of $url( hair. The dragon at the gates of the N?-SD"s shrin& and top profiler. +And this has a lot #ore insisten$e than (ou be$ause it $an arrest (ou for interfering with a poli$e in*estigation.+ +Is there a proble#3+ +There al#ost alwa(s is. Than& (ou. +Dr.+ +I"ll $he$& with the do$tor. +Can I help (ou3+ +9ieutenant Dallas and Dete$ti*e -eabod(. The wo#an behind the $ounter tapped her earpie$e turned awa( fro# the s#art s$reen where it loo&ed to )*e she"d been wor&ing on updating a $o#ple0 s$hedule. Rosenthall. Rosenthall"s in his lab this #orning.+ The words sounded as sour as the wo#an"s fa$e loo&ed. +The do$tor"s lab assistant will $o#e out and ta&e (ou ba$&. She tapped her earpie$e again. ?es. +Aer( well. Then s$owled. 1ira"s ad#in. 1o#ents later a side door opened.+ She waited a #o#ent staring holes through )*e. +!e need to spea& with Dr. Rosenthall two poli$e offi$ers are here and insist on spea&ing with hi#.+ She ai#ed her nose in the air before turning ba$& to her s$reen.+ +!here"s his lab3+ +I reall( #ust insist (ou tell #e (our business before I disturb the do$tor.

He sported a short stub of a pon(tail and ragged s&ids. +The ti#ing"s $ru$ial. .+ +Dallas.+ +He"s good. This isn"t a so$ial $all Dr. Stea# hissed and $urled. +An antidote. Rosenthall. How $an I help (ou3+ . 5f $ourse (ou"re Roar&e"s wife. Aid-star handso#e poeti$all( pale he re#o*ed a bea&er fro# its heater with tongs and set it in a bath of water.+ There was an absent $har# in his s#ile in his #o*e#ents as he $rossed to the#. +It"s ni$e to finall( #eet (ou.+5h. He paused at double steel doors swiped his $ard spo&e his na#e. +Sorr(. How is Roar&e3 I ha*en"t seen hi# in . it"s probabl( been a (ear.+ +>ustin. In the $enter of it a#id the $oils of tubing the spar&ling ele$troni$s the bus( s$reens and the forest of test tubes bea&ers and spe$i#en dishes stood >ustin Rosenthall. @# . . His gilded #ane of hair glea#ed under the bright lights.+ He flashed a *er( white s#ile. The lab assistant negotiated the# on flapping gel sandals. He wore a lab $oat li&e other #en wore a tu0 perfe$tl( fitted and so#ehow elegant. >ustin lifted the bea&er again slid it into a $ontainer sealed it set another gauge. A wo#an with short slee& red hair hun$hed o*er a #i$ros$ope while her foot tapped to 1a*is"s grinding beat.+ +To what3+ +To e*il.+ His s#ile war#ed as he e0tended a hand. 5nl( then did he step ba$& loo& o*er. Strange e7uations and s(#bols held fro=en on one of the wall s$reens while so#ething bubbled blue in a heated bea&er.+ At her raised e(ebrows -a$hai flushed shrugged. Another lab $oat diligentl( wor&ed two $o#ps at a long white $ounter. +!hat"s he wor&ing on3+ she as&ed their guide. Sorr(.+ The se$urit( blin&ed green in a$$eptan$e and the doors slid open into a large lab. No of $ourse not. . +-a$hai /upta. )*e felt a weird 'u0taposition as her friend 1a*is"s *oi$e wailed out about lo*e on the wild side o*er the pristine red and white roo#. Through the thin $urtain of it )*e saw his e(es tawn( as a lion"s fi0 intentl( on so#e sort of gauge. )*e heard a low beep. +If (ou"ll $o#e this wa(3+ Through the door was a #a=e a rabbit warren of roo#s off angled $orridors. . ?ou"re the poli$e3+ +9ieutenant Dallas Dete$ti*e -eabod( N?-SD. 1ore.

+.+ +No neither do I + >ustin said. His lips tre#bled and tears $ontinued to swar# those hea*(-lidded e(es. +Are the( in trouble3 I $an assure (ou the("*e been wor&ing *er( hard against their addi$tions. I"# sorr( but how $an the( be #urdered3 I saw the# onl( (esterda(.i$&ford was stabbed to death Cob( Ai0 was bludgeoned to death and >ennifer Darnell was strangled. His e(es were li7uid on(0 swi##ing under in&( lashes. +-a$h let"s sit down. The redhead $alled out a protest when 1a*is stopped wailing. +1usi$ off + he ordered. +!hat3 Sorr( what3+ +The( were #urdered between two and two-fort( this #orning in the building where the( were s7uatting. No. !hen did (ou see the# last3+ she as&ed -a$hai. The( onl( shi##ered #ore intensel( when >ustin laid a hand on his shoulder.+ +?ou were friends3+ +?es.+ .+?ou &now >ennifer Darnell Cob( Ai0 !ilson .ehind her -a$hai let out a strangled gasp as >ustin 'ust stared at her.+ >ustin rubbed his te#ple.efore >en and Cob( went to wor& after !il got off. !e had $offee.+ +!hen3+ +-a$h + >ustin repeated gentl(. +There"s no #ista&e3+ +No.+ His s#ile faded. +)arl( this #orning !ilson . !e%I%I don"t understand. !e ha*e $offee al#ost e*er( da(. +!hat happened3+ The lab rat with the stubb( pon(tail had turned and li&e the redhead wat$hed.+ +Dead3 1urdered3 All3+ +How3+ -a$hai too& )*e"s ar# then 7ui$&l( released it.i$&ford. It"s a hard road and there will be stu#bles but%+ +The( were #urdered earl( this #orning. +Not now 1arti.+ +?es.+ .+ +No.

The other #an slu#ped ba$& in his $hair shuddered then $losed his e(es lowered his head. The( were turning their li*es around and the three of the# had for#ed a strong bond. >ustin turned ashen.+ .+ +The( were addi$ts. No one spo&e. +I 'ust $an"t thin&. She was the therapist of re$ord for all three of the#. At her station the redhead sat *er( still staring at )*e as if she"d spo&en in an an$ient foreign language.+ +?es. +1( /od the( were so (oung so hopeful.-a$hai began to weep and the harsh sobs bore hi# down to the floor where he $o*ered his fa$e with his hands. If there was so#eone so#ething one of the# #ight ha*e told Arianna.+ +?our fian$2e.+ +.ut wh( for /od"s sa&e3 None of the# belonged to a gang none of the# had an( *aluables to spea& of. !h( don"t we go o*er here sit down3+ +How $ould%was it%I"# sorr( + >ustin said.+ He loo&ed awa( pressed his fingers to his e(es. +9et #e help (ou. 9et #e help (ou up. !as this 'ust so#e rando# &illings3+ +Do (ou &now an(one who"d wish the#%an( one of the#%har#3+ +No. Their own s#all support group. No I don"t. The( were atta$&ed3 In the building on !est Twelfth3+ +?es.+ +?ou ga*e the# per#ission to s7uat in that propert(. Arianna !hitwood. ------------------------------------------------Chapter E In the silen$e )*e ga*e -eabod( a signal and responding -eabod( #o*ed to -a$hai.+ +In re$o*er( + >ustin said 7ui$&l(. +!as there an(one who the(%again an( one of the#%used to asso$iate with prior to their re$o*er( who #ight ha*e resented the fa$t that the( were getting $lean sta(ing $lean3+ +I don"t &now but if so the( didn"t #ention it to #e. +I"# sorr( for (our loss + she began in the $o#fort *oi$e she used so well.

+ +?es. . . I ne*er i#agined . I"# not sure I"d ha*e to $he$& the"lin& log. I sent Ben and -a$hai ho#e about ele*en I thin& it was.+ +!hat are (ou wor&ing on3+ +A seru# to $ountera$t deep and $hroni$ addi$tion and substan$e abuse. . +!e ha*e a poli$( not to lend #one( to an(one in the progra# but to tr( to find another wa( to help to guide the# to help the#sel*es. It will treat the $ra*ing on both a ph(si$al and ps($hologi$al le*el 7uiet the *iolen$e of that need during withdrawal and after.+?es. . 1arti left earlier.+ +That"s a lot of #idnight oil to burn. . I wor&ed until after two then bun&ed on the sofa in #( offi$e. I spo&e with Arianna . -a$hai told #e the( were sleeping on the street. !ell here. ?ou $an as& the# or $he$& the log-outs. it would be a roof o*er their heads until the( found a pla$e.+ +?ou for#ed an atta$h#ent to the#3+ +To >en then through her to Cob( and !il.+ +1edi$ations that basi$all( substitute one $he#i$al for another. I was here. !ith the burial #e#orial3 An(thing3+ .+ +Did (ou see or spea& with an(one during that ti#e3+ +No.+ +There are #edi$ations for that alread(. The three of the# together should ha*e been safe.+ +!hat I"# wor&ing on it"s%I belie*e%at its tipping point. She was so deter#ined and (ou $ould see the light $o#ing ba$& into her. I thought .+ +I wish I had. I"# atte#pting to wor& with natural ingredients that will trigger the $he#istr( in the brain and the bod( to return to the le*els prior to the addi$tion. +Is there an(thing I%we%$an do for the# now3 Conta$ting fa#il(3 I $an"t re#e#ber the details of that but Arianna will ha*e it.+ +I guess I"# $urious wh( (ou didn"t float the# the rent.+ +I ha*e to as& where (ou were between one and four this #orning. It was gratif(ing. )*en inspiring.+ He rubbed at his te#ple again the sa#e two fingers on the sa#e spot in the sa#e $ir$ular #otion. The( $ouldn"t #a&e the rent on >en"s apart#ent. . She"d fallen behind before she"d #ade the $o##it#ent to re$o*er(. . 1a(be ten or ten thirt( before I sent the bo(s ho#e. ?ou $ould see her finding her 7uiet. /od &nows ea$h one of the# had e0perien$e on the street handling the#sel*es.+ 1outh tight he glan$ed o*er to where -eabod( #ur#ured to -a$hai. I . . A rebalan$ing we"ll sa(.

I"# 'ust . 1( brother was a 'un&ie fa*ored >a== la$ed with Feus. >en in parti$ular. +?ou got the pi$ture + )*e began.+ +?eah I guess.+ She folded her hands together on her lap as if she wanted to &eep the# still.+ She glan$ed o*er her shoulder. . Started with pres$riptions after a $ar a$$ident es$alated until he"d destro(ed his #arriage did ti#e for s#a$&ing his wife and Ben around ended up on the street where he stabbed so#ebod( to death for twel*e dollars and a wrist unit. Sorr( it hardl( #atters.+ +!ere (ou $lose to the *i$ti#s3+ +I hate that word. I"ll go up tell her.+ +If (ou"d tell her I want to spea& with her before we lea*e I"d appre$iate it. It"s part of it.+ +?ou wor& in the lab. +?eah. Ca#e into it late (ou $ould sa(.+ +Is she in the Center now3+ +?es she should be in session now. He died in prison when so#ebod( returned the fa*or. She was 'ust so da#n li&able. !hitwood and as soon as possible.ut this3 This $o#es *er( *er( hard. Do (ou get friendl( with a lot of people in the progra#3+ +There"s intera$tion. He fa*ored it a lot right up until he 5D"d. Ai$ti#. ?ou"re going to find out + she added. I"# sorr( to #eet (ou this wa(.+ +It is in #( line of wor&. I"ll need to tal& to 1s. 6irst I"d li&e to spea& with (our other assistants. It"s our whole life and understanding who and what we"re wor&ing for.+ +Interns + he $orre$ted auto#ati$all(. I li&ed the#.+ )*e $onne$ted the dots. It"s a reall( ugl( pi$ture. I hate the 'un& and it too& a long ti#e before I stopped hating the 'un&ie. +And -a$hai3+ . .+!e"ll be notif(ing ne0t of &in. He #ade #( life #( #other"s #( father"s hell.+ +?es.+ )*e let hi# go and de$ided to ta&e the redhead first. There"s a $o##unal eater( on-site so a lot of ti#es staff"s eating with patients and re$o*erings. . To their addi$tion to the *iolen$e it often generates or the ph(si$al abuse it $auses. Not espe$iall( $lose. It"s #ore than lab wor& espe$iall( for >ustin. !e lose patients 9ieutenant. +!ith Ben it was his father. sorr(. !hen wor& allows we"re en$ouraged to attend sessions or le$tures. +It"s o*erused. I want to tell Ari in person fa$e-to-fa$e not o*er the"lin&. +I &now how it wor&s. +1arti 6ran& and Ben Di$&erson are here on intern s$holarships.

!here were (ou between one and four this #orning3+ +In bed.+ +@nderstood. If (ou thin& of an(thing $onta$t #e or #( partner. I wal&ed ba$& with >en and Cob( one night. If (ou &now how it wor&s (ou &now I ha*e to as&. 6or all of us.+ He s#iled a little. 1( un$le ga*e the# so#e food. He"s good about gi*ing people a $han$e. I don"t &now. +Did the( #a(be get atta$&ed on the street3+ He wat$hed )*e with horror and hope. +I feel li&e I"# going to wa&e up and none of this happened. To tal& to. +Alone and asleep. I had a date but it didn"t go an(where. Then he was 'ust one #ore 5D when -a$hai found hi# dead%two da(s dead. +It was ni$e. .+ .+ +That"s a thought isn"t it3 I appre$iate the ti#e.+ +Did (ou e*er go to the pla$e the( were sta(ing3+ +5n$e.+ +He wants it personal. >ustin wants people in*ested who wor& for hi# people who &now all the sides all the la(ers and ha*e a reason to be here. +This happening to >en and the others people who had a real shot at rede#ption who reall( put it all into &i$&ing it3 That"s personal too. I"*e got a roo##ate but she had a date and it did go so#ewhere. +Ben Di$&erson + he said. I got ho#e 'ust after #idnight. Not li&e -a$h but we hung out a $ouple ti#es.+ +?eah and it is.oun$e $rashing on Chill.+ She ga*e )*e a narrow loo&.+ She loo&ed o*er at -a$hai then down at her folded hands.+ +How well did (ou &now the *i$ti#s3+ +I . The friend pla(ed around with re$reationals li&ed the# too #u$h until he was fl(ing on @ps and .+ Her ga=e tra$&ed up #et )*e"s. 1( un$le #anages a Sli$e and I helped >en then Cob( get 'obs there. /od. She didn"t get ho#e until si0 this #orning. +And the people who atta$&ed the# went at the# when the( got to the building. His fa$e pale and thin showed signs of fatigue. And we hung out.+Childhood friend. .+ +It 'ust doesn"t see# real + he #ur#ured rubbing at his da#p tired e(es. The( were tight li&e brothers. I #ean I as&ed #( un$le if he $ould gi*e the# a tr(. +1a(be the( ran + he $ontinued in a *oi$e that hit$hed in a battle against tears. The restaurant"s $lose to where I li*e so I go in a lot.+ +No. +An(wa( fro# what (ou said how the( were &illed3 The three of us would"*e had to go batshit together brea& in to that pla$e and &ill the# li&e a pa$&.+ )*e #o*ed on to the last.

+ +. She wanted to wor& in an offi$e. I $an"t see hi# slaughtering three people.+ +Is there an(thing #ore we $an do3+ +Not at this ti#e. +Did (ou get an(thing3+ +He was in lo*e with Darnell + -eabod( said as the( headed down again. -repared pre#editated and target spe$ifi$.+ She signaled -eabod( who put her hand on -a$hai"s shoulder before rising. )*er(bod( has at least one "lin&. If an(thing o$$urs to (ou an(thing at all let #e &now.e$ause3+ +5h bo( a 7ui=. +He didn"t hesitate to tell #e or that he thought #a(be she felt so#ething ba$&. No alibi but he gi*es off this gentle &ind of sweet *ibe. !hen >ustin $a#e ba$& in he loo&ed drained. >en was stud(ing so she $ould do se$retarial wor&. The( didn"t ha*e an(thing didn"t hurt an(bod(.+ +No. +If (ou $ould gi*e Arianna a few #inutes she"ll #eet (ou in the 1editation /arden.+ No )*e thought. At least two of the#%and I"d add Rosenthall as a third%had been there &new the setup. There are going to be others who &new the# and the setup fro# /et Straight and Sli$e.+ +All right. +Arianna !hitwood down in the gardens + )*e told her. Did I pass3+ .+ +!ill (ou &eep #e%us%infor#ed3+ +I $an do that. That weighs. The( were har#less. Deliberate brea&-in through the ba$& and the other &illers%be$ause I $an"t see it being one gu(%got into the front atta$&ed the# in a fren=ied but s(ste#ati$ #anner.+ +Do (ou &now an(one who"d want to hurt the#3+ +I don"t see wh( an(one would. +Sure. It wasn"t #u$h to as&. !re$&ed the pla$e but as far as we &now too& nothing but their "lin&s%and at least one of the# had the prote$ti*e gear so no blood on his%or their%$lothes. That"s not #u$h to as&. Rando# doesn"t fit. This wasn"t rando#. It"s #ost probable the( brought the weapons%a &nife s$alpel and so#e sort of bludgeoning tool%with the#.+Did the( own "lin&s3+ He blin&ed in pu==le#ent.+ +5n the other hand he and e*er(one in that lab &new all three *i$s and where the( were s7uatting.

+ +?ou were the therapist for all three *i$ti#s + )*e began.+ +?ou"re not spoiling #( happ(. It"s *iolent or sl( or sedu$ti*e. +Totall( #ag. Bind of Fen. Her hair a ri$h nutt( brown was wound up in so#e $o#pli$ated twist that left her e0$eptional fa$e unfra#ed.+ +Dr. +9ieutenant Dallas. She rose. Her #other was the sa#e her father was her #other"s dealer%she thin&s. 9oo& butterflies.+ +5ther addi$ts not #a&ing su$h progress #ight resent the# for theirs. 5ften all three. She often bartered her bod( for hits.+ .+ +?es I guess I pi$&ed it up fro# hi#. Dete$ti*e -eabod(.ut not (et.utterflies 'ust #a&e (ou happ(. I"d hoped to find so#e 7uiet here. I belie*e that.+ )*e too& the path #ar&ed 1editation /arden angled through blosso#s and butterflies. +. I alwa(s wonder if the( ha*e teeth. +>u*ie group ho#es foster ho#es. +Addi$tion is ne*er 7uiet. 5n a professional and personal le*el I belie*e Cob( and !il would ha*e #ade it. . I &now >en would ha*e. -eople don"t thin& about that be$ause the( get distra$ted b( the wings.+ A s#ile bro&e o*er -eabod("s fa$e. Rosenthall used that ter#.+ Arianna laid a hand on her heart. She"d found the 7uiet. I"d hoped to #eet (ou but not li&e this. She"d $o#e so far in su$h a short ti#e. Her e(es a $olor $aught so#ewhere between green and brown spar&ed with anger. +I wanted to tal& to (ou here. -ea$eful. The( would ha*e #ade it. She saw Arianna on one of the stone ben$hes the dia#ond on her left hand on fire in the strea#s of light. )*er(thing about her said $lassi$ and $lass and re#inded )*e of 1ira.green suit with a foa# of la$e and high ra=or-thin heels of the sa#e $olor that show$ased long legs.+Not bad. +?es.+ +She did so#e ti#e in the s(ste# + )*e put in. The( #ust ha*e tin( sharp little teeth. . >en was addi$ted to heroin preferred it in the #i0 the( $all Chill on the street. The( would ha*e told #e if an(one was pressuring the# threatening the#.+ The( passed through an atriu# on the #ain le*el and into the burgeoning gardens. The 7uiet.+ +That"s true. She wore a leaf.+ +The("*e got that bugg( bod( and those $reep( little antennas.ut >en found her 7uiet and her strength and was helping Cob( and !il find theirs. Can we sit3+ She did so folded her hands again. At their approa$h Arianna turned her head. +Not bad at all + )*e said with a loo& around.

+?es.+ +!ere the( inti#ate3+ +No not se0uall(. I thin& she was beginning to feel nor#al and natural urges. >ustin and I were there that da(. She was read( to be helped and the( helped her.+ +This wasn"t her first tr( at rehab. The( for#ed friendships asso$iations at the Center and at /et Straight. He"d used that $har# and wit to sur*i*e on the streets. This ti#e she $hose. 6or >en se0 had been that bartering tool or so#ething to do with another addi$t. That"s a &ind of #ira$le.+ Arianna loo&ed awa( again as her *oi$e roughened. Instead of wal&ing on tr(ing for the ne0t s$ore or ending her life she went in.+ . . He was funn( sharp. The("d #ade a *ow%>en Cob( and !ill%to abstain for si0 #onths to fo$us on the#sel*es as indi*iduals.+ +How $an (ou be sure3+ +She would ha*e told #e. . She brought Cob( in. . She thought of the ne0t s$ore thought of 'ust ending her life and she $a#e to /et Straight. !e en$ourage re$o*erings to se*er ties with people who are part of their addi$tion but she wouldn"t listen. +!ithdrawal is hard and painful but she ne*er ga*e up.+ +Did the( tell (ou about an(one who $on$erned the# who ga*e the# an( grief put an( pressure on the# to use again3+ +No. +She"d had three $ourt-assigned rehabilitations and none of the# too&. She wal&ed in on her own. She had a troubled diffi$ult $hildhood. She"d be$o#e desensiti=ed about se0.+ +No.ut neither of the# #o*ed on it. And now . >en ran off when she was si0teen and $ontinued that troubled diffi$ult life up until nearl( four #onths ago when she wo&e up after a binge. She"d lost three da(s and $a#e ba$& to herself $o*ered in $uts bruises filth her own *o#it in so#e base#ent flop with no re$olle$tion of how she"d gotten there. He"d started to go ba$&.+ Arianna turned her head to #eet )*e"s e(es. She got out began to wal&. Cob( 'o&ed about it. He"d li*ed with his great-grand#other until she died and she"d ta&en hi# to $hur$h. !hat the("d for#ed now was a fa#il( so the( li*ed that wa(. !hen we #et. >en and Cob( had been if (ou $an $all it inti#a$( when the( were both using. None of the# had an( fa#il( no one the( were $lose to or had $onta$t with not for a long ti#e. Honest( had be$o#e a *ital tool for her in re$o*er( and she trusted #e. !il went the #ore spiritual route. Now he used it to &eep hi#self and his friends stead(. She sa*ed Cob( si#pl( be$ause she wouldn"t gi*e up on hi# either and then !il. The( were still in the hone(#oon stage so happ( to be where the( were so happ( to ha*e ea$h other. The( lo*ed her and their lo*e for her and ea$h other pro*ed stronger than the addi$tion. She was attra$ted to -a$h% -a$hai /upta%and he to her. >en and Cob( went with hi# a few ti#es but #ore for friendship than interest. She often said that was the beginning for her.

. . +At a ti#e li&e this3+ +1urder usuall( brings the $ops. 9et"s interrogate (ou.+ The sharp $all sli$ed through the 7uiet garden.aptist.+ +?ou *isited the# there3+ +)ither >ustin or I would drop b( on$e a wee&. She was ta&ing a business $lass.+ +?ou ga*e the# per#ission to li*e in the building3+ +?es.illingsl(.+ +5&a(. +!e trusted the#.+ +The poli$e.#. >ustin as&ed #e and we thought it would gi*e the# a breather allow the# to li*e on their own sa*e sta( $lose to the Center. )*e saw her bear down against the#. )*e $ouldn"t thin& of another word for the sounds he #ade or the loo& on his fa$e as he sprang to his feet. A #an tall his dar& hair $ropped $lose to a tanned fa$e hurried toward the#. The( did. +I heard what happened. Ignoring )*e and -eabod( he grabbed her hands got to his &nees.+ +!here else did the( go routinel( do routinel(3+ +The( li&ed to hang out at the Twelfth Street Diner drin& $offee and tal&. . His e(es a green as sharp as his *oi$e were all for Arianna. 9ieutenant Dallas Dete$ti*e -eabod( #( asso$iate )ton .+ . this #orning3+ He blustered. Spot-$he$& + she said with the first hint of a s#ile. 5r >en did. The( all put in ti#e at /et Straight attending #eetings ta&ing on $hores %$leaning organi=ing donations%that"s part of the progra#. +I was going to tell (ou #(self but I needed to spea& with the poli$e.+!hat $hur$h3+ +Ah .+ +It"s hardl( ne$essar( to interrogate Arianna at all and parti$ularl( before she"s had ti#e to pro$ess. The( attended group there too as well as here. The stipulation was the( had to &eep the pla$e and the#sel*es $lean. The("d see a *id now and then but pri#aril( the( wor&ed%sa*ed their #one( toward finding a pla$e to li*e% $on$entrated on the progra# studied.+ He shot )*e a disgusted loo&.+ +Arianna.ut (ou $an"t trust the addi$tion. !hat $an I do for (ou3+ +)ton. +I"# not answering an( of (our insulting 7uestions and neither is Arianna. Chelsea . !here were (ou between one and four a.+ Tears shi##ered in her e(es.

!h( would I3 Instead of wasting ti#e here (ou should be out on the street loo&ing for the #ania$s who did this.+ +Alone3+ +?es. Did (ou e*er *isit the building where the( were li*ing3+ His lips thinned.+ +So did (ou do the "(ou"re getting sleep(" with the *i$ti#s3+ )*e as&ed hi#.illingsl(.+ /entl( but deliberatel( Arianna drew her hands awa(. +Stop now.+5h (eah (ou are + )*e $orre$ted +here or at Cop Central.+ +Dr. ?our $hoi$e.+ +And3+ +As Arianna $an tell (ou the( were #a&ing e0$ellent e*en e0$eptional progress. +No. . It"s ob*iousl( the result of *iolent addi$ts people the( asso$iated with before the( began the progra#.+ +The("ll hardl( find out here with (ou. +)ton is one of our ps($hologists.+ +Nothing"s ob*ious at this point. The poli$e are tr(ing to find out who hurt >en and the bo(s and wh(. .+ +)ton. ?ou"re upset. . .+ Arianna rose. I &now how #u$h (ou"d in*ested in these re$o*erings. He spe$iali=es in h(pnotherap(.+ He too& her hands again.+ +!hen"s the last ti#e (ou had $onta$t with the#%ea$h of the#3+ +I"d ha*e to $he$& #( boo&.ut it"s natural to want to shield (ou fro# this &ind of ordeal. I $an hardl( re#e#ber off the top of #( head.+ +Do that. ?ou"*e been *er( helpful + she said to Arianna.+ +!hat was (our relationship with the *i$ti#s3+ -erhaps due to the fa$t that his fa$e went red Arianna answered for hi#. +And at that ti#e of the #orning I was ho#e in bed.+ +>ustin doesn"t allow an(thing. The pro$ess $an help the# through withdrawal gi*e the# fo$us and $an often help the# bring the root of their addi$tion to the surfa$e. +?es.+ +I ha*en"t heard an answer (et 1r. +?ou"re right of $ourse. +>ustin should ne*er ha*e allowed it.illingsl( + he snapped at )*e.

+Can (ou let us &now when . I bet she ga*e the *i$s a lot #ore of her ti#e attention and affe$tion than she gi*es . . )*en as the( stepped out into the air holding the first faint hint of fall )*e"s $o# signaled. +. >ustin and I would li&e to arrange a #e#orial.+ +I"ll ha*e the# sent to (ou this afternoon.+ +Arianna + . !ould be a prett( #ur&( #oti*e. +Asshole + was -eabod("s opinion. ?ou ha*e trans$ripts of (our sessions with the#. She re$ogni=ed the first on s$ene on her s$reen.+ +I"# re7uired to infor# the ne0t of &in + )*e told her. +I"ll be in tou$h on$e I ha*e.illingsl( whi$h is another pisser for hi#. 9oo&s li&e he &eeps in good shape. !e"d li&e to arrange for their re#ains.+ ------------------------------------------Chapter G The( got little #ore fro# /et Straight but $onfir#ation of e*er(thing the("d heard before and #ore grief. !ho &nows what he"s up to with that3+ +!h( didn"t (ou as& for his trans$ripts3+ +. I"ll show (ou the wa( out.+ +5h (eah and she doesn"t want hi# for hers.+ +Billing the hell out of the# doesn"t $hange that.+ +!e"*e got it than&s.+ +1a(be but I reall( hate hi# alread(.illingsl( began.illingsl(. . )ton had her hands again his head bent toward hers as he tal&ed rapidl(. It"s little enough. +)ton please.+ +That"s a pisser for hi#.e$ause he wouldn"t gi*e the# up not without a warrant whi$h (ou"re going to put in the wor&s while we head o*er to /et Straight.+ +I $an onl( hope it"s not the last. . Do$tor-patient pri*ilege doesn"t appl( when the patients are dead. . The( $ould help #e. And he wants Arianna !hitwood for his own.et he puts in plent( of g(# ti#e.ig fla#ing asshole with a big fla#ing te#per.+ As the( wal&ed awa( )*e glan$ed ba$&. -lus h(pnotherap(.+ +5ooh that"s going to be another pisser for .

It $ould be the sub'e$t was wearing a #as& or a disguise.+ +5ffi$er Slo*i$ are (ou a$tuall( wasting #( ti#e on this3+ +Sir I wouldn"t but she ga*e details she had the ti#e down and she ad#its it sounds $ra=(. +/reenish s&in red bulging e(es $ontorted features and pro#inent teeth wearing a bla$& $ape and $arr(ing a bla$& sat$hel.+ +!hat did she see3+ He $leared his throat.+ )*e hea*ed out a sigh.+ +And this green red-e(ed #onster was dan$ing in the streetlight. I belie*e her 9ieutenant I #ean about what she saw.+ +1ale #ediu# build%she thin&s%dar& hair wild and string(. There"s a streetlight and she states she saw hi# $learl( and he was dan$ing. +!ill she wor& with an artist3+ +She"s an0ious to. +A #onster.+ . !e got her on the $an*ass.+ )*e heard the shrug in his *oi$e.+ +Sorr(3+ +That"s her state#ent 9ieutenant.+ +?eah.+5ffi$er Slo*i$.+ +And laughing sir in what the wit des$ribes as a wild guttural laugh.+ +/i*e #e the details.+ +Sir we dug up a wit $lai#s she saw so#eone near the rear of the $ri#e s$ene and obser*ed hi# stuffing so#ething in the re$($ler where we found the blood( prote$ti*e gear. How good a loo&3+ +She $lai#s a good solid one. Her apart#ent"s got a good *iew of the area and she was up wal&ing her &id%&id"s teething.+ +Conta$t Dete$ti*e ?an$( at Central and get her to hi#.+ +That"s a brea&. +Her des$ription"s prett( strange but she"s sti$&ing to it and doesn"t stri&e #e as a wha$& 'ob.+ He #ade the throat-$learing sound again. She"s a shortorder $oo& on parental lea*e. -ossibl( a de#on.+ +?es sir.

Target spe$ifi$ pre#editated planned. 1orris wore a gra( suit and a strong red tie.+ +5r possibl( de#on + -eabod( put in and earned a sneer.+ +I"d sure as hell rather go to a pi==a 'oint than the #orgue. 1a(be the( had so#e trouble last night or so#ebod( followed the# ho#e. . +I want (ou to go b( Sli$e tal& to the boss the $owor&ers and do the sa#e at the twent(. +I"# not sa(ing I belie*e in #onsters and de#ons but so#ebod( h(ped up on Feus sa( $on*in$ed he is one gets in the gear to top it off. . Sin$e the wit onl( saw one #an and the e*iden$e leans toward one #an%he"d ha*e to be h(ped on so#ething. 6l(ing on Feus a #an $ould ha$& beat $ho&e%and laugh his ass off while doing it. His wardrobe rarel( *aried fro# bla$& sin$e the #urder of his lo*er. Feus not onl( #a&es (ou $ra=( but it deadens (ou to pain pu#ps the adrenaline. I"# going to swing b( the #orgue see what 1orris $an gi*e us.ut he $ouldn"t plan %$ostu#e sat$hel with weapons and prote$ti*e gear glo*ed or sealed hands.She sho*ed the $o# into her po$&et. #a(be. 1oti*e was a #ur&( area. Through the spea&ers a sa0 wailed out a 'a==( riff. +A green red-e(ed $ape-wearing #onster.+ )*e slid behind the wheel and headed for the #orgue.+ She $he$&ed the ti#e. ?eah.+ .ut not the $al$ulation. !e"ll hoo& up ba$& at Central. . !ant #e to bring (ou a sli$e3+ +No . . His long $le*er e(es #et hers o*er the open bod( of >ennifer Darnell. Need a tool for that in the sat$hel. She didn"t e0pe$t the sweepers to gift wrap the &iller"s prints for her. and so#e enterprising soul was alwa(s $o#ing up with a new and i#pro*ed in the illegals ga#e. . She $onsidered re'e$ted fiddled with *arious theories through downtown traffi$ then let the# si##er as she wal&ed into the white tunnel of the #orgue.+ +1a(be. Still a blend .athroo# ba$& roo# all neat and tid( so the &iller had #o*ed straight into the front of the shop and the *i$s. She was sure of it. The $hoi$e $heered her a little. Feus was a good fit she thought but not a perfe$t one. . Cli#b in ni$e and 7uiet%so#ething else that didn"t fit the Feus not pure Feus.fourCse*en.+ +The #onster did it. . +I see (ou got #e a triple-header. It fit the *iolen$e the fren=( of it. The band twined through his braid of dar& hair #at$hed the tie. ?ou $an round it off with the diner the( used as a hang spot. !e"ll see it through. He"d bro&en in through the ba$& window )*e thought bringing the s$ene ba$& into her head.

The tip bro&e on bone and that"s at the lab as well.+Not diffi$ult to belie*e gi*en the $ondition of these (oung people. As in (our notes she was stru$& with the sa#e bat as &illed her friend a$ross the &nees shattering her &nee$aps. . 1ore li&el( an ine0pensi*e #eat &nife. A blow here.+ +And when he"d finished there he still had enough to #anuall( strangle %$orre$t3+ .+ +S#all fa*or.+ +Se0ual a$ti*it( $onsensual or for$ed3+ +No. Considerable enduran$e. The ear e(e and tongue were re#o*ed post#orte# and with a s#ooth sharp blade%a s$alpel would be #( opinion. Do (ou &now how #an( are responsible for this3+ +5ne.( a bat or pipe so#e three in$hes in dia#eter and e0tre#e for$e. That also ta&es strength and energ(.+ +And her. Not a hunting or $ar*ing &nife. Ai$ti# one%in order of T5D%suffered #ultiple bro&en bones and ribs so#e of the# post#orte#.+ 1orris"s e(ebrows shot up.+ +Head blow first3+ )*e spe$ulated. If the("d li*ed and &ept $lean the( should ha*e done well enough. I"*e sent the# to the lab.+ He loo&ed o*er the bodies again. +5ne3 ?ou ne*er fail to intrigue. I found signs of re$o*er( and re*ersal. He"d literall( had his brains bashed in.+ +In$apa$itate both #ales.+ +!ere the( &eeping $lean3+ +Bnowing (ou"d as& I ran and rushed the to0 s$reen first and the( were.+ 1orris tapped the side of his hand diagonall( o*er his right te#ple. And it was done with pre$ision. I found so#e paint fla&es in the wounds. +6ro# #( re$onstru$tion whi$h is still preli#inar( (es. +It would ha*e &no$&ed hi# out $old.+ +Ai$ti# two #ultiple stab wounds infli$ted with a 'agged-edged blade so#e four in$hes in length. Again fro# #( preli# the rest of the wounds $a#e se*eral #inutes later. The( li*ed hard for their short ti#e. 5n the se$ond the stab wounds are *er( deep *er( for$eful and there are eight(-fi*e holes in that unfortunate bo(. Their last #eal whi$h I assu#e the( shared about #idnight was pi==a a diet $ola for the girl straight $ola for the bo(s. He was stabbed first $enter of the $hest two stri&es and on$e in the abdo#en. +The da#age here the strength the sheer energ( it too& to beat the first *i$ was $onsiderable. There"s internal abuse self-infli$ted fro# (ears of illegals ingestion poor diet. It"s unli&el( he felt the rest. C5D would be a fra$tured s&ull.

+!e got one Dallas. !here Nadine 6urst reporter e0traordinaire lounged in her *isitor"s $hair nibbling on a $oo&ie and wor&ing on her --C. She needed to re*iew her notes write an initial report%harass the sweepers and the lab for theirs%start her #urder board and boo&.+ +!ith $oo&ie $ru#bs on (our shirt.+ +-atheti$.ut (ou and I see e*er( da( what one hu#an being is $apable of doing to another. This one en'o(ed hi#self.+ +Then he has a powerful $onstitution probabl( $he#i$all( enhan$ed. .+ 1orris laid a gentle hand on >ennifer Darnell"s head.+ He brushed at the# hastil( as she turned awa( to stride to her offi$e. He en'o(ed this.a0ter stuff the re#ains of one in his #outh before he offered her a big s#ile.illingsl(.+ +?eah and when the( ha*e that #u$h fun the( want to do it again. And she wanted a loo& at the wit or at least ?an$("s s&et$h. She s#elled $oo&ies the #inute she stepped into the bullpen $aught the s$atter of $ru#bs on >en&inson"s shirt wat$hed . Reine&e"s wal&ing hi# down to lo$&up. +!hat do (ou want3+ .+ 888 She headed to Central.+?es + 1orris $onfir#ed +he used his own hands.+ +To #anuall( strangle the third whi$h also ta&es strength. I"# doing the fi*es. And still after that he had it in hi# to brea& $hairs tables basi$all( wrea& ha*o$. He ended it a$$ording to the wit we"re wor&ing with b( dan$ing down the sidewal&. So#ewhere in there she wanted to $ar*e out so#e ti#e to do a good solid run on )ton Asshole . -atheti$ that a bun$h of $ops fat-assing at their des&s instead of out ta&ing down bad gu(s $an be bribed with $oo&ies. Sa(ing nothing )*e lifted the lid of the ba&er( bo0 on her des& too& out a fat $ho$olate $hip. +I"# not 1ira so that"s si#pl( a dead do$tor"s ta&e. +Nadine"s in (our offi$e 9T.+ >en&inson shot up a hand.

+ +I"# wor&ing on it.+ +The *i$ti#s are the stor(. +I heard (ou $aught a #ess( one.+ +Three *i$ti#s beaten stabbed and strangled re$o*ering addi$ts with a $onne$tion to the !hitwood /roup%&illed in fa$t on propert( owned b( sa#e.+ +In$luding.+ Nadine )*e $al$ulated was alwa(s a good sour$e. +!hat else do (ou want3+ +?ou"re 'ust ba$& fro# $losing a big one in Dallas. Isaa$ 1$Hueen% the se$ond ti#e (ou too& hi# down. Co#es fro# #one(. +The( were (oung tr(ing to turn things around.+ +!ell I hope he is be$ause he"s as I said a di$&.+A #an of a#a=ing se0ual prowess great sensiti*it( stupendous abs and the fa$e of an angel.+ )*e bit into the $oo&ie. Toss in a wi$&ed sense of hu#or and stupendous wealth who adores the *er( ground I wal& on.+ .+ +I &now.+ +That"s right. He also seriousl( $ourted the lo*el( Arianna who fell head o*er s&irt for Rosenthall %who is not a di$&.+ Nadine"s s#ile faded. I don"t ha*e an(thing to gi*e (ou.illingsl(3+ +He"s a di$&.+ )*e too& another bite of $oo&ie.+ +I got that #u$h. I ha*en"t put it together (et. The !hitwoods are alwa(s a strong stor(. +Se$ond $hoi$e3+ Nadine fluffed ba$& her strea&( blond hair s#iled her feline s#ile with her $at"s e(es glinting. I want (ou to $o#e on Now and tal& about it.+ +In$luding the !hitwoods and the *er( drea#( >ustin Rosenthall. 5h wait (ou alread( ha*e hi#. Are (ou loo&ing at gang andCor illegals related #urders3+ +I"# loo&ing at e*er(thing e*er(one. +!hat do (ou &now about )ton . It"s a hot stor( Dallas. Da#n fine $oo&ie.+ +Is he a suspe$t3+ +Nadine it"s too earl(. I don"t &now #u$h about hi# but I $an find out. Not 7uite on the !hitwood le*el but he"s got a fat portfolio. Hi# $o#ing after (ou abdu$ting one of his for#er *i$ti#s.

+A $ouple of (ears ago when (ou and I hoo&ed up o*er the De. Da#n fine or not her appetite dried up. I li&e to &now who I"# wor&ing with.+ +It"s not li&e (ou to gi*e up so eas(. .illingsl(.+ And it was. I"*e got to go. That and those wildl( blue e(es the sil&( bla$& hair. Nadine had been right )*e thought in her su##ar( of hi#. +I"# not going to do that.+ +I intended to $onta$t the#.+ Nadine angled her head.+ )*e said nothing. I had to as&. Rising she progra##ed $offee then began to set up her board.+ +5&a(.lass $ase I did a little resear$h. !hen she finished she started her report. hurt. +It"s not eas( getting #u$h ba$&ground on (ou but I &now (ou were found in Dallas when (ou were a $hild and (ou"d been .)*e set the $oo&ie aside. So#e of it in the apart#ent where he &ept 1elinda >ones and the girl so#e in the hotel suite where he $a#e after (ou. +And I"# not going to press (ou. The reporter wants an inter*iew Dallas but the friend won"t push. +Dallas an(ti#e (ou want to tal& to the friend about an( of it the reporter will step ba$&. She was shuffled dire$tl( to Dr. 6riendship"s stronger than a stor(. She"d wor& better with the *isuals. +That"s parti$ularl( grueso#e + Roar&e said fro# her doorwa(. He did ha*e the fa$e of an angel a fallen one with the wings well-singed but that onl( #ade hi# #ore $o#pelling. +?ou should go to Dallas where it happened tal& to the# there. 9ouise Di#atto"s *-#ail left a #essage as&ing for a #eeting. 5h she"d left a few things out but all in all. . No that"s not half-bad.ree and 1elinda >ones + )*e said as Nadine rose. ?ou should $onta$t . +An on-lo$ation spe$ial3 That"s not bad. +!hen (ou get so#ething on this new $ase #a(be (ou $an gi*e #e a heads-up.+ +1a(be I $ould. He wore one of his sharp business suits but there was no asshole *ibe here as with .+ Alone )*e turned to her "lin& and $onta$ted another friend.+ Nadine re$rossed her legs.+ At the door Nadine paused glan$ed ba$&.+ +I appre$iate it.+ . .efore she $ould sa( an(thing else Nadine held up a hand.

+Tell #e about the $ase.+ +!h( not sin$e it"s unli&el( I $an tal& (ou into a late lun$h or earl( dinner.illingsl(. He"s intense without being prea$h( and she"s dedi$ated without being tireso#e. +!hat are (ou doing here3+ she de#anded. +A strong !hitwood-Rosenthall $onne$tion + he $o##ented.+ +5n #( wa(.+ He ran a hand absentl( o*er )*e"s shoulder as he #o*ed $loser to the board. +This will ha*e to do. +Dallas.illingsl( in*ol*ed either. +?ou $an tag along. +!hat would the( ha*e to do with this3+ +That"s a 7uestion. This is new + he said loo&ing at her board again.+ +I"*e got the s&et$h 9ieutenant + ?an$( told her. And the( both put their ti#e and effort into their parti$ular $ause. Still. +I had business nearb( and too& a $han$e I"d see #( wife.This was power su$$ess se0 and danger all rolled into one strea#lined pa$&age with Ireland gilding his *oi$e. +As I said I don"t &now the# well but I $an"t see the# in*ol*ed in that. +1a(be (ou $an elaborate on that later but right now I ha*e to%+ She bro&e off answered her "lin&. +!h( not ha*e it sent to (our $o#p3+ +.e$ause he"s going to want to e0plain it to #e. Certainl( he wouldn"t .+ +/it + Roar&e said using his $hildhood slang in insult. +Surfa$e so$iall( $haritable foundation e*ents sort of &nowing.+ She $li$&ed off rose. @nfortunatel( I $an"t see .+ +Is that so3+ He shifted his ga=e ba$& to her. And here she is. How well do (ou &now the#3+ +Not that well.+ She thought of the des$ription.+ He flipped open the ba&er( bo0 helped hi#self to a $oo&ie. I ha*en"t had ti#e to #onitor the poli$e reports + he added as the( wal&ed.+ She did as the( used the glides to get to ?an$("s le*el. +I thin& (ou"re going to want to see it.+ +)ton . +Caught it this #orning. 5h >ustin Rosenthall and Arianna !hitwood sa( hi.

ut then when the poli$e $a#e and said those three people had been #urdered right a$ross the street . ?an$( ga*e )*e a nod. A thin nose hoo&ed o*er it.stoop to getting his hands dirt(. 9T C(nthia Bopel%and 9ilian. Reputation"s ruined the Center bla$&ened blah blah.+ As she spo&e the bab( su$&ed heroi$all( on one of the plugs parents used to &eep babies fro# s$rea#ing%as far as )*e &new.+ +An( nu#ber of people at the Center and /et Straight would ha*e #edi$al training. +C(nthia this is 9ieutenant Dallas.+ . I onl( wish I"d $onta$ted the poli$e last night when I saw hi#. +I &now how it loo&s + C(nthia repeated boun$ing the bab( on her &nee either out of ner*es or habit.+ +?eah and I"# going to loo& at all of the#. 5ne of the# finds out threatens to spill it.ut I 'ust thought it was so#e $ra=(.+ )*e held out a hand for the printout. --------------------------------------------Chapter I The $roo&ed 'aw a$$ented a twisted #outh with teeth long sharp and pro#inent. +It"s what I saw. +!hoe*er did it had so#e #edi$al training + she added. . . . Can I see the s&et$h3+ ?an$( e0$hanged a loo& with the witness and C(nthia sighed.+ +-eople who wor& with addi$ts da( in da( out so#eti#es end up using the#sel*es. 1a(be one or #ore than one of the# gets in too deep.+ +I"# happ( to. >ust weird. I got a good loo& be$ause he was dan$ing around in the streetlight li&e it was a spotlight on a stage. The e(es bulged and glea#ed red against s&in of pale si$&l( green.+ She #o*ed through ?an$("s di*ision straight to the glass $ube where she saw hi# and a wo#an in her earl( thirties with a bab( on her lap. Hair fell in oil( twists o*er a wide forehead o*er ears with a defined point nearl( to the shoulders of a swirled bla$& $ape. +!e appre$iate (our $ooperation and infor#ation. I &now how it loo&s but it"s what I saw. Bopel. And when ?an$( ga*e it to her loo&ed at the fa$e of a #onster. +1orris $onfir#s the a#putations weren"t the wor& of an a#ateur. 6er*ent. I didn"t &now about those people until 5ffi$er Slo*i$ &no$&ed on the door toda(. +I &now I sound li&e a nut$ase but I"# not. !ell I thought%after it s$ared the hell out of #e for a se$ond%'ust so#e weird gu(. . Newl( re$o*erings $an be li&e $on*erts.+ +Than&s for $o#ing in 1s.

The tension in C(nthia"s fa$e eased. +. +5h (eah. And that laugh. . So he dresses up for it adds so#e pun$h.+ +!hen (ou see so#ething li&e this in the #iddle of the night outside (our window it would spoo& (ou + )*e $o##ented. )*il. 9i&e he had so#ething stu$& in his throat. !ell it #ade the hairs on the ba$& of #( ne$& stand up. !hat did the( hear see3 !hat was he afraid the("d sa(3 So .+ +Are (ou $ertain she &new hi#3+ Roar&e as&ed. +Theatri$s. I don"t thin& we"ll be issuing a .+ +I &now how it loo&s too + ?an$( said after he"d wal&ed C(nthia out.+ She drew the bab( $loser.+ +If it"s #a&eup + ?an$( told her +he"s a pro and an e0pert. .+ +?eah. The attitude fits%the laughing dan$ing around the theatri$s. If it"s a #as& of so#e &ind it"s da#n good so it"d $ost large. The( &new ea$h other.ut she was solid Dallas.+ +Here to ser*e. Strangest s&et$h I"*e e*er done and I"*e done so#e strange.+ She let out a sigh. Howe*er he loo&ed how $ould he be laughing and dan$ing around after &illing the#3 He is a #onster.595 on this fa$e at this ti#e but she saw what she saw. . +?ou see all &inds of strange stuff and people in the $it( and half the ti#e (ou barel( noti$e or get a &i$& out of it (ou &now3 .+ C(nthia shuddered. +I didn"t thin& an(one would belie*e #e. Is this what he wanted her to see3 Adds #ore fear but it"s not as personal if she"s seeing this #as& this disguise and not hi#. Ni$e 'ob ?an$(. . He went up the street %spinning around so the $ape he was wearing twirled.+ +I &now he was $reep(. )ar e(es tongue. +It was this #ania$al laugh but low and deep%and &ind of raw. After he stuffed so#ething in the re$($ler he bent o*er his hands on his &nees laughing and laughing. There was definite glee in the &illings.ut this was .+ . +He strangled Darnell fa$e-tofa$e. +That he has so#e sort of defor#it( and pla(ed it up. send #e the file $op( + she said to ?an$(.+ She frowned o*er the s&et$h. I started to go wa&e up Reed% 9ilian"s dadd(%but then he%this gu(%left.+ +Ha*e (ou $onsidered a $o#bination3+ Roar&e as&ed as the( wal&ed ba$&.+ +?eah I got that. +!e"ll start $he$&ing $ostu#e shops theaters. And that should help. The 'aw%if (our witness has it right%it loo&s se*erel( dislo$ated. +5n the inside he"s e0a$tl( how he loo&ed. He &new all of the#.+1a(be he dressed up for it + )*e $onsidered. I felt stupid but then those three people I had to report it on$e I &new.

+ +I doubt the( thin& of it in 7uite those ter#s + Roar&e $onsidered.+ She went ba$& in her offi$e with Roar&e. +Start running down this loo&. +I probabl( did. +?ou got the last one + -eabod( told her. He"s li&e a #utant. 9u$&( I brought ba$& a personal pie.+ +-art de#on part #onster part hu#an. He( Roar&e. If it"s a #edi$al $ondition . Costu#e parties + she added. ?ou $an"t hide so#ething li&e that. Theaters $ostu#e outlets. +!hoa. And let"s see if we $an find an(one $onne$ted to the $enter or /et Straight who"s in*ol*ed in theater or theatri$al #a&eup. 1a(be Dallas will share with (ou. I"# waiting for 9ouise to tag #e ba$&.+ She angled so her "lin& $aptured the #urder board.+ +Ten #inutes + )*e said again.s. I"# writing it up.+ !hen the( stepped ba$& into the bullpen -eabod( hailed her. +. 1a(be she"d ha*e so#e ideas on that. 1ira has a full s$hedule toda(.+ +And Dr.+I"# going to be wor&ing that angle but nobod( I"*e inter*iewed so far has an( &ind of fa$ial defor#it(. Seriousl(3+ +?an$( thin&s the wit"s solid and as I tal&ed to her #(self I agree. +In thirt( #inutes + the ad#in told her.+ )*e pi$&ed up the ta&eout passed it to Roar&e. +1a(be she will. +Not #u$h to add fro# Sli$e or the twent(-fourCse*en or the diner.+ She started to dig out #one( for the pi==a. +-la$es li&e the Center ha*e fundraisers li&e that right3 !here the( #a&e people dress up li&e idiots then s7uee=e the# for donations. +Don"t be late.ut (es. .+ +He"s li&e so#ebod( in $ostu#e + )*e $orre$ted. +I want to tr( to get a #eet with 1ira. Did (ou see an(bod( li&e this3+ She offered -eabod( the s&et$h. If (ou get an(thing $lose to a hit + she told -eabod( +let #e &now.+ She sat and began $hipping awa( at the s$ales of the dragon at 1ira"s gates.+ +!e"ll loo& at that.+ +I won"t. I need to wal& this through with 1ira. +Ten #inutes + )*e insisted. +/o ahead + she said gesturing at the ta&e-out bo0. +I"*e got three D. +6or this.+ . . 5r 1ira. See if (ou $an find an(thing that fits.

ut the probabilit("s low an( of the# &new so#eone ba$& then who had the s&ill to surgi$all( re#o*e bod( parts.+ +I $an"t fault (our logi$. +He"s an e0$ellent therapist and a $o#plete 'er&. I #et !il re$entl(.+ +Roar&e.+ +?es. It"s so#ebod( atta$hed to that. The( were in Haiti helping to set up a new $lini$ when Charles and I got #arried or the("d ha*e been at the wedding. I do her #onthl( e0a#s. So e*en fl(ing he had s&ill a stead( hand. And Cob( too in the last few #onths. I"# a$tuall( >en Darnell"s ph(si$ian of re$ord. It"s #inor but the("re alread( prepping the patient. Channels are $hannels for a reason e*en when the("re anno(ing. +I 'ust heard.+ +!h( don"t (ou and Charles #eet us for drin&s after wor&3 ?ou and )*e $an dis$uss what needs to be dis$ussed.+ 9ouise still in s$rubs #as& dangling $a#e on s$reen.+ +How well do (ou &now Rosenthall and Arianna !hitwood3+ +Aer( well.+ +Not dis$ounted.+ . +Here.+ +I"*e got another surger( s$heduled.+ He si#pl( nudged her aside.+ She tried the pi==a herself.+ +Dallas I was in surger(. Add to it Darnell"s been out of that for nearl( four #onths and wouldn"t be tough to tra$& down. ?ou"*e dis$ounted this being done b( so#eone fro# their past3 An addi$t a dealer.+ +)ton . +?ou &now (ou $ould $onta$t 1ira dire$tl(. I $an"t 7uite belie*e it. Did + she $orre$ted.+ +?ou &new the#. If she"d &nown so#ething that threatened so#eone with this s&ill wouldn"t he ha*e dealt with her before3 6or four #onths she"s been i##ersed in the Center and the progra#. I rarel( $an. +Hello 9ouise. +I"d see her often when I did a rotation at either the Center or /et Straight. +.+ +Ha*e her and Charles #eet us for drin&s + Roar&e suggested and got a blan& loo& fro# )*e.+ 9ouise"s prett( fa$e pruned. +Dallas.+ +?eah but it"s not right. I didn"t reali=e (ou were there.Sa#pling the pi==a Roar&e wandered o*er to her board.illingsl(.+ +I need to tal& to (ou about this.+ Her "lin& signaled. He hasn"t been in the progra# as long. I thin& he was on so#ething when he did%the fren=( the strength and enduran$e then laughing and dan$ing.+ +I suppose.

+?ou"re earl(. The war# loo&s the prett( fe#inine suits perfe$t blend of $olor and 'ewelr(. 1a(be it was a shrin& thing )*e $onsidered thin&ing of Arianna. +Now (ou $an tal& to 9ouise re*isit (our $ri#e s$ene and ha*e a little ti#e with friends.+ 9eaning down he brushed his lips o*er hers.+ Stern turned suspi$ious as the wo#an lifted the lid of the bo0 a fra$tion then #ore as she peered in. Is she free now3+ Still e(eing )*e she tapped her earpie$e.+ )*e set the bo0 on the des&. Her ga=e landed on the ba&er( bo0 narrowed. The ad#in bus( on her $o#p glan$ed up with a stern frown. +Than&s for $learing ti#e for #e. It did she ad#itted but not as #u$h as e0pe$ted. !hat the hell. +Coo&ies3 ?ou brought #e $oo&ies3+ +The("re good.+ -leased with herself )*e stepped into the $al# of 1ira"s offi$e. She li&ed 9ouise and Charles but wasn"t sure how she felt about her inter*iew with a sour$e turning into a so$ial hour. +The("re $ho$olate $hip.+ !hile Roar&e set it up )*e turned ba$& to her board.+ +Than&s. I had one. +6ind so#ewhere to #eet up near the $ri#e s$ene + )*e said and ga*e Roar&e the address.+ +There. +It"s effi$ient.+ +Are these a than&-(ou or a bribe3+ the ad#in as&ed as )*e #o*ed to the door.+ +Then I"# not late. +I want to go ba$& o*er it. Interlude on !est )le*enth between Si0th and Se*enth.+ Roar&e turned awa( fro# the "lin& when he"d finished. +9ieutenant Dallas is here. She ignored the noses that $a#e up sniffing as she passed through the bullpen and $aught a glide to 1ira"s offi$e.+ +I guess it is. ?ou $an go right in. +Ta&e $are of #( $op + he told her then left. It should ha*e weirded her out )*e #used sharing pi==a and good-b(e &isses #a&ing dates for drin&s in her offi$e.+?es I thin& that would wor&. She said +H### + and pi$&ing it up wal&ed out.+ He s&i##ed a fingertip down the dent in her $hin. 1ira s#iled fro# behind her des&.+ +I"*e got a #eeting shortl( so I"ll see (ou there. . 5f $ourse. At fi*e or as $lose as (ou $an #a&e it.

He"s s&illed. +Theatri$al $onfident organi=ed.+I &now (ou don"t ha*e #u$h ti#e.+ +Al#ost $ertainl(. He &new where to brea& in $a#e prepared and was able to &ill with e0tre#e *iolen$e three people alone and in a relati*el( short a#ount of ti#e. !e ha*e a wit who saw hi# at the rear of the building where he bro&e in. And it a#used hi#.+ +He"ll do it again. The a#putations were s&illfull( done.+ +I agree. I figure he geared hi#self up for it added the dra#a. He won"t #a&e friends easil( won"t feel that bond. That"s what he #ade the#. He"s a series of $ontradi$tions )*e.J +He en*ied their friendship + 1ira $ontinued. "Ta&e out the trash " he wrote in their blood. 1( sense of the s$ene is fren=ied glee. He"s better than the( are. +Their bond and their happiness.+ . The elaborate disguise tells #e he wants to be noti$ed and doesn"t feel he is not enough. He has a god $o#ple0 battling with low self-estee# a bitter en*( and has found satisfa$tion and personal delight in &illing. Ha*e a seat.+ She shifted #et )*e"s e(es with her own 7uiet blue ones.+ In her pla$id wa( 1ira studied the s&et$h. +!ell. I belie*e he"ll &eep these trophies these s(#bols.ut the( had prior to their deaths.+ +As soon as he $an. She wor&ed with Dete$ti*e ?an$(. He #ost li&el( li*es alone feels underappre$iated at his wor&. Two people%perhaps #ore%in one. Spotlighting after his su$$ess. )nduran$e (es and rage.+ +)nough I hope. +I agree with (our assess#ent that he has so#e sort of #edi$al training.+ As )*e too& one of 1ira"s blue s$oop $hairs 1ira $a#e around the des& too& the one fa$ing. He had to be on so#ething be$ause &illing three people that dead ta&es enduran$e. 1( first 7uestion is how sure are (ou there"s onl( one &iller3+ +Aer(. He"s both $ontrolled and out of $ontrol $ann( and re$&less. @nder the #a&eup or the #as& whate*er it is $ould he ha*e a defor#it(3 The 'aw"s e0tre#e.+ 1ira tu$&ed a lo$& of sable-$olored hair behind her ear as she $ontinued to stud( the s&et$h.+ +. The( &new ea$h other. Nothing is enough.+ )*e too& out the s&et$h offered it. His *i$ti#s are no longer able to see hear or spea& of hi#.+ +This fa$e. +I loo&ed o*er the data the $ri#e-s$ene photos. He wants what others ha*e%friends fa#il( $o##unit( %and at the sa#e ti#e feels superior to the#. ?ou ha*e a *iolent so$iopath under the influen$e of a strong illegal. The wit sa(s he dan$ed in the streetlight laughed his ugl( ass off. He $an $elebrate %and in the light perhaps hoping he"d be seen. +Now I ha*e to as& how good is (our witness3+ +Again I ha*e to sa( *er(. Dan$ing laughing so (es he en'o(ed hi#self.

-eabod("s running down $ostu#e shops theaters.ut again I $an"t thin& of an( reason it wouldn"t be treated. All of us are $apable under $ertain $ir$u#stan$es of e0tre#e and *iolent beha*ior.+ +)*er(one"s $apable + )*e stated. The( turned a personal traged( into a great gift.+ +A re$ent in'ur( a$$ident3+ +-ossibl( + 1ira $onsidered. +!ith her he re#ains s&illed gifted dedi$ated to his wor& but he"s happier. As so#eone with #edi$al training and $onne$tions he would $ertainl( ha*e had this repaired.illingsl(3+ +A s&illed therapist and an enor#ous pain in the ass. And not $apable of #urdering three people li&e this.+ +It #ust be fa&ed. . A bright $o#passionate wo#an. .+?es I see that but a defor#it( su$h as this3 He"d be in $onstant pain.efore Arianna he was #u$h #ore of a loner and rarel( stepped awa( fro# his wor&. He"s gi*en hi#self a #onster"s fa$e. He"s a po#pous snob who sees hi#self as perfe$t. 1ore intense than Arianna I"d sa(. If for so#e reason he refused to ha*e it treated and is dosing hi#self with pain&illers and other drugs it #ight e0plain the fren=( the dualit( in his profile.+ +5&a(. +Do (ou &now >ustin Rosenthall and Arianna !hitwood3+ +?es. Not unli&e so#eone else + 1ira said with a s#ile. He"s rude anno(ing and full of hi#self. +.+ +A god $o#ple03+ . Hu#anit( #eans little to hi#. >ustin"s a do$tor dedi$ated to healing a s$ientist and #an of reason. The person who did this re'e$ts reason and hu#anit(. Arianna"s an e0$ellent therapist. It see#s to #e%though I don"t see or so$iali=e with the# often%she"s softened that intensit(. It would be all but i#possible for hi# to eat.+ +I don"t li&e hi# so it"s hard to be ob'e$ti*e.+ +And Rosenthall3+ +Aer( s&illed re#ar&abl( gifted. How about )ton . +?es (ou"re right. -h(si$all( e#otionall( #entall( spirituall(.+ )*e paused a #o#ent $hanged angles. !e $ontrol it $hannel it%in so#e $ases #edi$ate it. His spee$h would be garbled.ut wh( would an(one endure the pain of this the so$ial stig#a3 And it $ontradi$ts again his $onfiden$e his need to be seen as superior. +I don"t thin& I"*e e*er heard (ou $all an(bod( a pain in the ass.+ )*e had to grin. She and her parents ha*e done a great deal not onl( in resear$h and appli$ation on addi$tions and rehabilitation but the( built their Center with the purpose of treating the whole person.

.+ +I"ll let (ou &now + )*e said and left. +?es I"d sa(. +It"s *er( diffi$ult for #e to en*ision a #an li&e hi# deliberatel( #a&ing hi#self hideous.+ +!hen and if it"s not (ou"ll tal& to #e3+ +I &now I $an. . That doesn"t su$&. He"s also *ain. +Not (et. And thin&ing that I hope to hell >ustin Rosenthall doesn"t be$ause (ou belie*e she lo*es hi#.+ +That"s to be e0pe$ted with that &ind of in'ur(.+ )*e got up started for the door. If she is li&e (ou then she"s got no part in this.+ 1ira let out a 7ui$& e0asperated laugh. +Is she li&e (ou3+ she as&ed.illingsl( $ertainl( wants to be noti$ed and rewarded and praised. I don"t &now hi# well enough. It was . 1ostl( good though.+ +I"# fine. At least right now. ?ou wonder if he"s $apable.+ +?ou ha*en"t been ba$& long. How"s (our ar#3+ )*e started to dis#iss it then settled on the truth. . Isaa$ 1$Hueen"s ba$& in a $age where he belongs. . +Arianna !hitwood3+ +9i&e #e3+ +That"s the sense I got fro# her. I don"t &now a sense. I"# not thin&ing about #( #other what happened there + she said before 1ira $ould as&.+ +So do I.+ She studied the s&et$h again. He"s s&illed%he has an 1D and would ha*e done so#e ti#e with a s$alpel before he fo$used on his spe$ialt(. It"s done and right now I"# o&a( with it. Tell #e how (ou are. +A little sore in the #orning and b( the end of the da(. I hope he"s $lear.+ +So#ething to thin& about though. . +I &now (ou"re suspi$ious of the te$hni7ue but it"s *alid and $an be *er( effe$ti*e.ut . That"s a prett( big start right3+ +?es it is. I appre$iate the ti#e. She #ade #e thin& of (ou. 1a(be 'ust being ba$& in New ?or&"s enough. .+ +H(pno-*oodoo. . Night#ares3+ +No. Not 'ust be$ause she"s an attra$ti*e fe#ale shrin&.1ira"s e(ebrows rose.+ +I"# happ( to gi*e it.

5r the anno(ing do$tor fooled around with a patient #a(be%h##% #a(be tried a #o*e on Darnell. She so#eti#es wondered wh( Roar&e didn"t resent all the ti#e the attention the in*est#ent she put into the 'ob. Her patients her in*est#ent her su$$ess%at least so far. That $ould pla(. -ossible. .illingsl(. 5r onto . Instin$t di$tated a push on . Now that $o#bined with being found out $ould lead to blood( *i$ious #urder. He pushed hi#self on his beautiful asso$iate and again one or all of the# saw the in$ident.ut she"d gi*e a little push on the good do$tor as well. 1a(be he"d de*eloped a proble# of his own during those e0peri#ents.----------------------------------------Chapter < )*e glan$ed o*er at -eabod( as she wal&ed ba$& into the bullpen got a sha&e of the head. Rosenthall had her. And what did that ha*e to do with the three *i$s3 The( were Arianna"s.illingsl(%and she intended to listen. 1a(be the three *i$s%or an( one of the#%o*erheard Arianna and the good do$tor going at it o*er her wor& that ti#e and attention again. Can"t ha*e her find out he"s be$o#e what he"s supposed to $ure. . The good daughter and again the good do$tor. )*er(bod( li&ed RosenthallK nobod( li&ed . 1a(be the *i$s or one of the# o*erheard the two do$tors in-lo*e arguing be$ause Rosenthall was sa#pling produ$t.illingsl(. He( bit$h what about #e3 Shouldn"t I be the $enter of (our world3 1a(be he"d lost his te#per. )0peri#enting. ?ou e0peri#ented. Could be Arianna didn"t &now. .ut there weren"t a lot of Roar&es in the world.illingsl( wanted her%and didn"t bother to Lha-haM disguise it. And no 'ust not enough for that &ind of slaughter. Rosenthall"s too. . Arianna !hitwood. Couldn"t ha*e the gossip #ills grinding that one. Re'e$ted hu#iliated worried she"d tell Arianna.eautiful ri$h s#art dedi$ated $aring. She went into her offi$e got $offee then sat at her des& put her boots up and studied the board. Didn"t that #a&e an interesting triangle3 . 1a(be Arianna had gi*en the# too #u$h ti#e attention #ade too big an in*est#ent. That"s what (ou did in a lab. A #an $ould resent that. So no lu$& (et on #as&s or #a&eup. He"d lose an( $han$e with the wo#an he wanted and his li$ense to pra$ti$e.

ut none of it pla(ed *er( well. So not friends%not espe$iall(. She brought the lab setup ba$& into her head. Nothing bu==ing there )*e thought but $ontinued as -eabod( had started or $o#pleted a nu#ber of deeper runs on the pla(ers in those arenas. Dead low on the list she de$ided but it felt too soon to eli#inate. 6or now she read o*er -eabod("s notes on her inter*iews at Sli$e and the twent(-fourCse*en the diner hangout. -ossibl(. 1a(be she 'ust needed to fine-tune a little. !or&ing together on the pro'e$t she #used but the("d see#ed *er( separate hadn"t the(3 !ith Rosenthall $enter. And the( were both still on s$holarships she noted in the intern progra# at the Center. Neither Di$&erson nor 6ran& had gone to /upta when he"d bro&en down. Now /upta had the plu# position of the renowned do$tor"s lab assistant on a #a'or pro'e$t. .oth 1arti 6ran& and Ben Di$&erson $a#e fro# the ordinar( and in Di$&erson"s $ase the rough with his dead addi$t of an abusi*e father. Co#petitors3 Didn"t (ou ha*e to ha*e a $o#petiti*e strea& to $o#e in first in (our $lass or in the top tier with a$$eleration3 And was it interesting she wondered or frustrating to learn that all si0 of the# had suffi$ient #edi$al training to ha*e perfor#ed the a#putations3 She"d eli#inate the fe#ales e0$ept one of the# #ight ha*e a$ted in $ollusion. Di$&erson third%a$$elerated path. . 6ran& top of her $lass in $ollege %on a full s$holarship.oth had e0$elled in s$hool she noted. He"d graduated high s$hool at si0teen $ollege %again on s$holarships%at nineteen and straight into #edi$al s$hool. .illingsl( Arianna 1arti 6ran& Ben Di$&erson and -a$hai /upta. /upta $a#e fro# so#e wealth and an upper-$lass so$ial strata and she $onsidered the fa$t that his parents also do$tors had wor&ed with Rosenthall (ears before.That $ould pla( too. Couldn"t so#ething li&e that #a&e a $areer3 How would /upta"s upper-$lass parents feel about hi# pining for a re$o*ering addi$t3 -ossibl( he wanted to &eep that on the down low and possibl( Darnell wanted to go publi$. . Rising )*e got another $up of $offee then started deeper runs of her own on Rosenthall .

Not in an( sort of #as& or doable with #a&eup and prostheti$s. All of the# had a$$ess to drugs and $ould easil( put their hands on the prote$ti*e gear. She wal&ed out to -eabod(. So he"d onl( sealed his hands or worn glo*es. I"# going to tal& to 9ouise after then wor& fro# ho#e. All sent to the lab. . She pi$&ed her wa( through the data on ea$h suspe$t added to her notes her board. Ta&en the "lin&s she #used but not the #one(. !hen the sweepers" initial report $a#e through she poun$ed. 6ibers on the windowsill footprints in blood.+ +No (ou &eep at it. A#ateur hour. A $ouple of the people I tal&ed to were all 'ui$ed up about it tr(ing to figure out how to #a&e it wor&.+ +It was dar& e*en with the streetlight. And wal&ing through the blood that was 'ust stupid.All of the# &new the *i$s" lo$ation.+ +I didn"t sa( de#on or #onster. So he"d ta&en the#. None of the# had alibis for the ti#e in 7uestion. Nothing that would allow the person wearing it to see $learl( spea& or laugh the wa( the wit des$ribed. I"# not getting an(where an(wa(. 1iddle of the night.ut the e(es3 )*er( one of the# tells #e if the( used apparatus li&e that%to #a&e the# bulge out or appear to and turn that red%it would ha#per *ision. +I"*e tal&ed to the top $ostu#e shops%and so#e $ostu#e and theatri$al #a&eup designers in the $it(. All of the# &new andCor intera$ted with the *i$s. If the( found the shoes the( had hi#.+ -eabod( huffed out a breath sho*ed at her hair. Sa#e with the 'aw. !hat I get is sure the s&in $olor"s no proble#K hair no bigK nose teeth (ou bet. I"*e got the# pro#ising to e0peri#ent see what the( $an do.+ +!hat if he"s so#e &ind of frea&3+ +-eabod(. . +I"# going ba$& to the s$ene. Not bad -eabod(. He loo&s li&e this%or so#ething li&e this and he 'ust pu#ped it up.+ .+ +1a(be. She"d #a&e boo& this had been his debut. I"ll wor& that at ho#e. 6irst &ill she thought.ut nobod("s got an(thing li&e this. 9i&e a $ir$us frea& (ou &now3 A $ontortionist or a frea& show t(pe.+ +I"# serious about getting nowhere.+ +Cir$us. 1a(be the wit e0aggerated so#e. That"s an angle. Ti#e to $ir$le ba$&.+ +Beep at it an(wa( be$ause it is doable as it was done.+ +5&a(. None of the *i$ti#s" "lin&s had been found on s$ene. 1ore paint fla&es so#e bla$& fibers fro# the window $asing so#e hairs%no roots.

+!h( didn"t (ou tell #e (ou were going to Dallas3+ 1a*is de#anded.+ +Sloo$h. +Conta$t 1a*is 6reestone po$&et "lin&. )*e rolled her e(es but $o#plied with a &issing sound.+ +5h sorr(. It was%+ +!e"re going to $hit so#e serious $hat about this.+ Conta$t initiated.+ 1a*is angled her head.e$ause I"# bus(.+ +5&a(.ernard.ella"s slobber. Biss &iss.+ +!h( don"t (ou 'ust send it to her3+ +.ella s7uealed with (et #ore delight.+ she $ried with absolute 'o( and pressed her wet lips to the s$reen of the po$&et "lin&.+ !ith 1a*is it would be o&a(.+ . +Coward.+ Instantl( the bab("s $hubb( grinning fa$e repla$ed her #other"s.ellora#a. . +.ut later.+?ou"d &i$& #( ass if I said #onster. She thought of #a&eup frea&s altered appearan$es as she dro*e%and had a brainstor#. S#oo$h. +I"# going to send (ou a s&et$h and I need (ou to get in tou$h with Trina show it to her. So what"s the up3+ 1a*is as&ed as she whipped out a $loth and polished the s$reen. +He( Dallas. +I didn"t ha*e ti#e. I need (ou to%$an (ou wipe (our s$reen off3 ?ou loo& li&e (ou"*e been li$&ed b( a Saint . +Sa( hi to Dallas .+ +1a&e the sound Dallas + 1a*is said offs$reen.+ +Right. +?eah hi &id.+ There was so#e shifting giggling then 1a*is $a#e ba$& on behind the fil# of .+ +Beep that in #ind if (ou be$o#e te#pted + )*e warned then headed out.+ 1a*is"s prett( happ( fa$e filled the dash s$reen. +-la(ti#e. +Das. Her hair a $urling #ass of gold-strea&ed red toda( boun$ed.

Still he"d had to &now whi$h #attress ea$h *i$ slept on. I got wigged when I%Hol( shit on a fla#ing sti$&. ?ou did so#e $arn( wor&.ut there was a streetlight enough for so#e ba$&wash. I"*e got so#ething hot and she #ight be able to help. I"ll tag Trina now so I don"t ha*e to wig alone. .ut hol( (ou &now what this is too totall( s$ar(.+ +I"ll be passing it on%and getting it off #( "lin& 'ust in $ase it has the power to #ateriali=e.a$& in the da( sure.+ +Sorr(. 9et #e &now. I"# s$heduling #( night#are right now. +!hat *id3+ +Nadine"s *id%(our *id. And stood inside left the lights off. He loo&s li&e he"s born to &ill. She unsealed the door used her #aster. I don"t want her gi*ing #e grief be$ause I didn"t rub so#e shit on #( fa$e or in #( hair. So I finished #( gig on the *id + she said as )*e ordered the s&et$h a$$essed and sent. She #o*ed straight through to the ba$& opened the window $li#bed out. I need to &now what it ta&es to #a&e so#ebod( loo& li&e this. >es%'eepers + she $orre$ted. +5h hell%hello + 1a*is #uttered. . It"s #ag to the nth the( wanted #e to pla( #(self.+ +. The I$o*e Agenda. And the $hi$& pla(ing (ou3 1an the( #ade her a ringer.+ )*e pulled o*er at the $urb in front of the $ri#e s$ene. Trina &nows that $rap. He"d #o*ed with purpose with a plan despite the fero$it(.+ +Than&s.+ +I saw plent( of #ega weird but nothing li&e this. +I swore in front of the bab(.ella e$hoed happil( in the ba$&ground.+ +/i*e #e the goods. . 5r listen to her tell #e I need #( hair $ut or whate*er.+ +A pa$t with Satan3+ +!ith #a&eup and prostheti$s and that stuff. Alwa(s plent( of #ar&s at a $arn(.+ +)*er see an(thing li&e this3 6rea& show-wise. 5ther angle. Not as dar& as it would"*e been she thought.+ +Co#e on. ?ou wouldn"t as& unless it%he%whate*er%&illed so#ebod(.+ +Shit + .+I"# a bus( $oward. +I got bu#ps of the goose all o*er.

. I &no$&ed li&e a good $i*ilian but (ou didn"t answer. +Da#n it. The $ri#e-s$ene re$ords ne*er ha*e 7uite the sa#e i#pa$t. )*e turned ba$& to the window.+ He stood where he was loo&ing around. Cli#bs in. +Cra$&s Ai0 a$ross the side of the head where he la(.+ +He"d been in here and ba$& there before. . So#e bo0es in here she noted and tid( piles of old #aterials%but he doesn"t bu#p into the#. . She followed the steps easing in sliding down to her feet%left fibers behind.+ +How else would I get in3 ?our *ehi$le"s outside and the seal"s bro&en. He 'i##ies it she thought%7uiet now. Not #u$h would $o#e through the window %it"s grilled%fro# the streetlight. And he wal&s right into the front.+ Sin$e he was here she"d use hi#. I doubt he e*er wo&e up. +He 'i##ied the window rear 7uietl( stepped around the stuff ba$& there%in the dar& or near dar&. As she did the door started to open. +!hat an unhol( #ess. 9eads with the bat. He"s the lu$&( one. He"s been here before.+ +I"# the one with a stunner ai#ed at #e.+ She swung." + She sho*ed it ba$& in the holster.+ +Naturall(. 5pens the sat$hel for the prote$ti*e $oat. She had her weapon out trained. Spinning and dan$ing up the street C(nthia had said. A *ehi$le nearb(3 5r a hole to $rawl into. I get to sa( "Da#n it.+ +I was out the ba$& window.+ +?eah.oth of the do$tors and Arianna had *ehi$les.ut he doesn"t wa&e the#. So he didn"t $are about being seen. )*e i#agined the &iller dan$ing and spinning in the spot of the streetlight laughing. His own pla$e3 If he"d ta&en a $ab the subwa( a bus3 )*en in New ?or& so#ebod( would"*e reported it. Then hissed when Roar&e stepped in. All of the lab rats li*ed within blo$&s. +?ou"re not supposed to pi$& the lo$& on a $ri#e s$ene.And (eah the building a$ross the street had a good *iew of the window the sidewal& the re$($ler. Bnew 'ust how to na*igate and &new where ea$h one slept. No dan$ing and laughing not (et.

+ +She"d ha*e wo&en don"t (ou thin&3+ +. +It too& ti#e to do that. He lo*es it. He ta&es a s$alpel out of his sat$hel be$ause he ta&es pride in the wor&. Now he #a&es a point. Now it"s ti#e for Darnell. .+ She $ould see it all but s#ell the blood.i$&ford with the &nife and stabs and ha$&s. He wanted her to &now hi#. The un7uiet. He wants #ore so he goes ba$& to .+ +1a(be #a(be e*en to hi#. +Arianna said so#ething.ut he went ba$& to Ai0 beat hi# into 'ell(. That addi$tion steals the 7uiet.+ )*e shifted. That"s what he brought ba$&. >ust better than he"d e*er i#agined. +. Chaos. /ot up either tried to run or tried to fight.+ +He"s so $le*er a real 'o&er. He stages the# against the wall. !hat (ou"*e 'ust des$ribed is e*il. I bet he slapped his &nees o*er it. The $haos. +That"s $lose an(wa(. How the("d found their 7uiet. The("re a trio aren"t the( li&e the #on&e(s.+ She paused a #inute. He"s laughing now be$ause this is so #u$h fun. It"s too funn( and thrilling.ut she"s in terrible pain in sho$& in h(steri$s. 6ast. . 5*er eight( ti#es. And now it"s her turn.+ Roar&e studied the wall. He uses the bat brea&s her &nee$aps.ut he li&es it. His letters so $arefull( for#ed. Destro(s it. Not dashed off but $learl( printed.+ She #i#ed swit$hing hands. He 'ust $an"t get enough so he brea&s the pla$e up what little the( had. Then he uses their blood to lea*e us a #essage. He"s not done. +He sa(s her na#e. An ear an e(e her tongue. 1a(be she s$rea#ed%nobod( heard%or #a(be she 'ust passed out or went into sho$&.ash sli$e #o*e#ent.e$ause he is.+ +)*il + Roar&e finished.+ +That"s how it happened. He put the prote$ti*e gear on in the ba$& roo# but blood"s on his fa$e. He ga*e it so#e thought. 9i&es the taste of e*il the s#ell of it.lood"s fl(ing e*er(where bones snapping shattering. Hear no see no spea& no.i$&ford #ight"*e #ade so#e sound tried to $all out but his lung"s pun$tured.i$&ford. It"s fa$e-to-fa$e it"s his hands on her throat so he $an feel her pulse going wild then slowing slowing slowing while her e(es bulge and her bod( beats itself against the floor. +She tried to drag herself awa(.+ Inside she was as $old as the i#ages fi0ed in her head.i$&ford"s $hest%two blows and another in the gut. .+ . See the blood"s s#eared on the floor there fro# her &nees fro# her tr(ing to pull herself awa(. !hile that pulse stops and her e(es fi0 and her bod( goes li#p. Dr. +-uts it into . So that"s the na#e he pi$&ed. I bet he said her na#e and his. It feels war# tastes hot. He doesn"t use the &nife. )spe$iall( Darnell. .Changes to the &nife. .+ +Christ >esus )*e. I thin& she wo&e up before he"d finished with .

Another four had a booth s$arfing down bar $hips while the( held one of those 7ui$& $oded $on*ersations of inti#ate friends. Dr. +?ou ne*er &now.+ She opted for a beer when the waitress $a#e o*er and Roar&e held up two fingers. The bartender bright (oung fe#ale 'oined in with the# idl( swiping the bar with a rag as she laughed at so#ething the( said. He wanted her and she said no%or worse didn"t see hi# as a #an.+ ----------------------------------------Chapter N )*e loo&ed around the bar as the( went in. +Satisfied3+ +About what3+ +That (ou won"t ha*e to arrest an(one in here. She was the easiest &ill of the three but he sa*ed her for last be$ause she was the #ost i#portant. The others didn"t #atter as #u$h e0$ept for their $onne$tion to her. I loo&ed at (our board. Huiet and $o=( with a neighborhood feel she obser*ed. A $ouple of gu(s sat at the bar deep in their brews and $on*ersation. Chaos had the ti#e of his life. He stuffs the gear in the re$($ler properl( disposing of it li&e he tells us to do with the bodies. It was >en. She bet the( were regulars bet the seats of the stools all but $arried the i#print of their asses. Turns it inside out to &eep the blood off his $lothes and he $li#bs ba$& out shuts the window. He laughs and he dan$es 'ust so full of the fun of it he $an"t $ontain it. He wanted her to see what he did how he &illed the others too& awa( what #attered #ost to her in the $ruelest wa(. A $ouple sat at a table%had a first-date drin&-afterwor&-to-see-how-it-goes loo& about the#. A little $lue so we"ll be sure to find it. Roar&e too& a booth s#iled at her o*er the table. ?eah.+ +Then (ou $an tell #e about it o*er the drin& I find I want *er( #u$h right now.+ +It was the girl.ut ta&ing the bod( parts%the("d seen or heard so#ething he $ouldn"t afford the# to tal& about.She wal&ed awa( into the ba$&. And that has hi# doubled o*er with laughter. +He ta&es off the prote$ti*e gear. Then he &illed her with his hands so she $ould see his fa$e and he $ould see hers. +Now as we"re a bit earl( tell #e what (ou learned ba$& there. She was the pri#ar( #oti*e.+ .+ +It had gone past se0 or rape as power and $ontrol and he got off on the &illing. . !hate*er it was it was re$ent.+ +He didn"t rape her.+ She s#iled ba$&. Then he dan$es awa( high on the un7uiet.+ +Did (ou learn an( #ore fro# this re-$reation3+ +1a(be.

+How"s it going 9ieutenant Sugar3+ +I"*e got three bodies and a short list of suspe$ts. +See that group o*er there. +Insensiti*e.oth she and Charles ordered a glass of the house white.+ . /ood da( + she added +as I didn"t deal with death.illingsl( 'ust on prin$iple.+ +All right. It wasn"t Arianna !hitwood or 1arti 6ran&. +. . -als. How hu#iliating would it be for a #an li&e that to want an addi$t a s7uatter a nothing and be re'e$ted b( her3+ +That"s a great deal for a se$ond loo& at the $ri#e s$ene. She"s also on his le*el. +9oo& at the bod( language. As Charles for#er li$ensed $o#panion turned se0 therapist slid in beside his wife he grinned at )*e.+ +He wor&ed alone. It $ould be worse. Sorr( + she said to 9ouise. +!hat $an I tell (ou about (our short list of suspe$ts3+ )*e drew out the s&et$h laid it on the table.ut the("re not $ouples. -u==led 9ouise leaned $loser. The( #a( &now so#ething #a( not &now the( &now it but this one had to ha*e all the fun for hi#self. The("re tight but it"s not se0ual. +!e"*e still got a #onth till Halloween. Here"s 9ouise and Charles. He doesn"t $onne$t he doesn"t ha*e that $loseness with an(one.+ Roar&e stood greeting 9ouise with a &iss Charles with a handsha&e.ut he still belie*es he $an get her.+ +?ou loo& tired + Roar&e $o##ented.+ +No. +Two gu(s two girls.+ . The( tal& all the ti#e hang all the ti#e. !e both deal with death all too often but at least I $o#e into it when there"s still a $han$e.She waited until the waitress ser*ed the beers. So that bu#ps the two fe#ale suspe$ts down the list for #e. !hen the("re not together the( tag ea$h other.lah blah blah.ut not enough.+ She lifted her $hin toward the booth of four. . He"s s#ug and a show-off whi$h is wh( I li&e .+ +.+ +Arianna said no to hi# + Roar&e pointed out. +9ong da(. He too& their "lin&s be$ause he got that he &new the( $onne$ted that wa( when the( weren"t together and had to $on$lude the("d tal&ed about whate*er the("d seen or heard *ia "lin&. And the( ne*er run out of $on*ersation.+ +Aren"t the(3+ Roar&e said en'o(ing her.+ +This is who the witness saw outside the $ri#e s$ene.

And the s&in3 I"d diagnose #ultiple organ failure at worst ane#ia at best. I heard this weird laughing and went to the window.+ +Sure. I had the late shift last night so I didn"t lea*e until after two. I don"t &now e0a$tl( but it was probabl( about three fifteen three thirt( or thereabouts when I finished.+ . It rela0es #e. +Do (ou &now an( of Rosenthall"s lab people3+ she as&ed 9ouise. I guess he wasn"t 'ust a weirdo. +?ou s$ared the hell out of her + Charles said. +!h( would an(one want to dress up be that noti$eable when doing #urder3+ +1a(be it added to the thrill.+ She hit$hed up a hip dug out a $ard. I did so#e (oga when I got ho#e. I"d li&e (our na#e and address. +)0a$tl( what ti#e3 )0a$tl( where3+ )*e drew out her badge laid it ne0t to the s&et$h. The pain would be enor#ous.+ +!hi$h wa( was he going3+ +)ast toward )ighth it loo&ed li&e.+ 9ouise tapped a finger tipped in pearl( pale pin& on the s&et$h. +There would be airwa( blo$&age diffi$ult( breathing spea&ing eating. ?ou don"t forget a fa$e li&e that + she added with a laugh. He &illed so#ebod(3+ +?eah. +No. +She"d be s#art not to wal& ho#e alone and to &eep her windows $losed.+It"s a hell of a disguise + Charles $o##ented.+ The waitress paused as she ser*ed the wine. !ell this #orning. ?ou see all &inds (ou &now so I didn"t thin& an(thing of it. I saw hi# 'u#p up swing on the pole of the streetlight wa*ing this bla$& bag. +Conta$t #e. Sure.+ +Now (ou ha*e two do$tors telling (ou that. +!here3+ +9ast night. I li*e on >ane right off /reenwi$h Street.+ 5n$e she"d gi*en it the waitress hurried awa(. !ow. There should be $onsiderable swelling but I don"t see an( in this s&et$h. !ow a lieutenant. I 'ust thought weirdo shut the window and went to bed. !e"re not ha*ing an( lu$& on repli$ating the disguise and 1ira sa(s it"s unli&el( he $ould tolerate the 'aw%bro&en or dislo$ated that wa(.+ +He( I saw that gu(. +5h. I had it open and I saw this dude here sort of s&ipping down the sidewal& a$ross the street. Not 'ust the $olor. And the e(es $ertainl( aren"t natural. H(perth(roidis# $an $ause the e(es to bulge but I"*e ne*er seen an(thing that se*ere. This is e0tre#e.+ +Sure. Ho#i$ide. +!hen3+ )*e de#anded. !hat"d he do3+ +)nough so if (ou see hi# again $onta$t the poli$e. He had to fa&e all this.+ She put the s&et$h awa( sipped at her beer.

+ +And if Arianna $ut hi# off%fro# the Center3+ +He has #one( of his own and should ha*e a lot of $onta$ts.+ 9ouise s#iled a little o*er her wine. .+ +Then he"d do a lot to prote$t it.+5&a( we"ll set the# aside for now. +How about .ut it would be hu#iliating and he wouldn"t ta&e it well. He was with Arianna when we #et then I was with Charles not long after.+ +How"d he rea$t when (ou brushed hi# off3+ +9i&e it was #( loss. He has a te#per but I"*e ne*er seen an(thing to indi$ate he"s $apable of #urder or real *iolen$e. Ne*er this. If his wor&"s i#portant to hi#. Has >ustin e*er sa#pled produ$t3+ +Absolutel( not. If she $ut hi# loose it"d be a big loss. +If so#ething went wrong between the# it would be a blow for both of the# personall( and professionall(.ut Ari"s the gold ring. Did Rosenthall e*er #o*e on (ou3+ +No. .+ +She"s in lo*e with hi# and the("re bonded o*er the wor& + 9ouise began.+ +. I ha*e as little to do with hi# as possible.+ +Not this Dallas.+ +I"# going on the theor( the three *i$ti#s &new so#ething about the &iller. That"s 'ust opinion Dallas. +That"s a deliberate $hoi$e.ut s$ientists are easier to find than ba$&ers li&e the !hitwood /roup. He"s rude and de#anding but fro# what I"*e heard *er( good in therap(. She"s the one ba$&ing his resear$h and wor&%or the /roup is.+ 5&a( )*e thought as long as 9ouise spo&e in absolutes the( wouldn"t get an(where on Rosenthall.+ +He put #o*es on (ou.+ .+ +It doesn"t ta&e that #u$h ti#e. He"s in lo*e with Ari and added to that his wor& doesn"t gi*e hi# a lot of ti#e for #o*ing on other wo#en.+ +)ssential I"d sa(.illingsl(3+ +I $an"t sa(. So#ething he &illed to prote$t.+ +He puts the# on e*er( fe#ale he finds attra$ti*e or belie*es $an enhan$e his $areer. Not >ustin. I"d $ertainl( doubt it but I don"t &now hi# well.

ut $ertainl( worth a shot.+ She $hewed on it as the( wal&ed inside where Su##erset and the $at waited in the fo(er. If it"s either of the do$tors he"s probabl( got a *ehi$le near there.+ She too& out her noteboo& added the new infor#ation new thoughts on the wa( ho#e. I don"t ha*e enough on an( of the# to re7uire a drug test. +?ou did *er( well #anaging nearl( a half an hour on non-wor&-related topi$s after (our inter*iew with 9ouise. +. )*er(one on this list $onne$ts to illegals.+ +I"ll gi*e it one to#orrow. 9ost so#eone to the# wor&s with the# li*es with the#. Heading toward )ighth. -lus a s$ientist should be able to $reate an elaborate disguise. The &iller"s a user%has to be.+ +/ood. Roar&e left her to it until she began to #utter.+ +Not #u$h help.ut if I as&ed ea$h of the# and the("re $lean wh( wouldn"t the( $ooperate3+ +/eneral prin$iples + he said as he dro*e through the gates of ho#e. ?et.+ +The bar waitress was a stro&e of lu$&. 5thers ha*e #ore.+ +I $an tal& about other stuff.+ +?ou $onfir#ed and elaborated on 1ira"s opinion on the &iller"s fa$e. If it"s Di$&erson he goes one $rosstown blo$& to ho#e. ?ou dri*e. +I had it pi$&ed up so I $ould dri*e ho#e with #( adoring wife.+ +And illegals spea& to those dar& pla$es #a&e #ore noise so the( spread. .+ !hen the( left Roar&e too& her hand as she wal&ed. /upta north on )ighth for a blo$& and a half to ho#e.+ +?ou $an (es but I &now it"s not eas( when (ou"re steeped in a $ase. +Is an(bod( reall( that good the wa( e*er(bod( des$ribes Rosenthall3+ +So#e people ha*e fewer shadows than others fewer dar& pla$es. .+5&a( than&s. Nobod( at Sli$e or /et Straight li*es in that dire$tion% and the( don"t fit an(wa( but it"s another negati*e on that group. That"s prett( good o*er one drin&. !here"s (our $ar3+ she as&ed when the( rea$hed the $ri#e s$ene. ?ou ga*e #e a few #ore details on two of #( suspe$ts and #eeting (ou here ga*e #e another wit who tells #e the &iller went up to >ane before heading toward )ighth.

. I"# a 'ealous #an.+ So o&a( it twinged a little when she too& off her 'a$&et her weapon harness.+ +So I see.+ +It"s o&a(. +9et"s deal with that ar#. Her shoulder ga*e a $ouple of $li$&s as she stret$hed pun$hed out. !e"ll get dinner in the lieutenant"s offi$e + Roar&e added to Su##erset. /et it o*er with she thought and began the stret$hing e0er$ises wor&ing her range of #otion as Roar&e dit$hed his 'a$&et and tie.+ Roar&e too& her hand again turned her toward the bedroo#.+ +Alwa(s a bonus.+ +!e"*e both had worse.+ +?ou"re starting to fa*or it. +Ho#e together in a ti#el( fashion and unbloodied. It was the worst of the $uts.+ +It"s 'ust a little sore. +?ou 'ust want to get #( shirt off. Nearl( healed + he #ur#ured tra$ing a fingertip along the edges where 1$Hueen"s &nife had sli$ed.+ To #a&e her s#ile he leered. +And ta&e (our ti#e. +1ira does good wor&. +It"s $o#ing along. +I &new it.+ She 'abbed hi# with a finger. Applause. Tr( to a*oid a$tuall( pun$hing so#eone for a few #ore da(s + he suggested as he got the topi$al $rea# fro# a drawer. All (ou thin& about is getting in #( pants.+ Roar&e 'ust shoo& his head as )*e started upstairs.+A #onu#ental da( + Su##erset announ$ed.+ +If he a$tuall( applauded the bones in his s&eletal hands would brea& and $ru#ble to dust.ut for now I 'ust want a loo& at that hip.+ +!hi$h #eans it"s ti#e for so#e of the ph(si$al therap( and treat#ent. +.+ +!ith e*er( breath I ta&e. Don"t be su$h a bab(.ut before. He rolled up his slee*es as he $rossed to her then started to unhoo& her trousers.+ +If onl( + )*e #uttered.+ . -eel it off 9ieutenant. +I"# sho$&ed be(ond spee$h. +The two of (ou reall( ha*e to stop this lo*e affair.

A#used aroused he wat$hed her.+ S#oothing those #agi$ hands down her sides he s#iled. +5&a( #a(be a little dawdling + she said and brought her lips to his again.+ The( hadn"t #ade lo*e sin$e she"d been hurt%and she reali=ed she should ha*e figured wh( he"d been so $areful with her hadn"t tou$hed her that wa( had a*oided being tou$hed b( her.+ She too& his #outh ga*e it a ni$e little bite as she ground against hi#.+ He laughed wrapped his ar#s around her.His e(es lifted to hers held and said a great deal. 9ose the tan& and sit down. +/et it up pal. +!ell (ou"*e left #e no $hoi$e. So she leaned into hi# a little tou$hed her lips to his. +6eels good + she repeated. +6eels good. A $ouple #ore da(s (ou"ll li&el( be good as new.+ +?ou ain"t seen nothing (et.+ +A $o$&"s alwa(s read( to $row.+ /oing with the instin$t that told her the( didn"t 'ust need the ph(si$al inti#a$( but the fun that $ould go along with it she tossed her leg o*er his lap straddled hi#. 9et"s test it out. +There (ou are + she #ur#ured.+ +I onl( want to gi*e (ou ti#e to heal. +?ou won"t.+ +Nearl(.+ She did as he as&ed thin&ing he needed the tending as #u$h as #a(be #ore than she.+ +Show #e. Tell #e if I hurt (ou.+ +?ou"re not. I"ll finish (ou up. Reall( good.+ +I ha*e it on good authorit( I ha*e an e0$ellent $onstitution. +In a bit of a hurr( are we3+ +I"*e got to use (ou and get ba$& to wor& so no dawdling. +Reall( good. Then his hands %he had #agi$ hands%s#oothed the $rea# o*er the a$he and she $losed her e(es.+ And too& his hand laid it on her breast. +?ou"re *er( de#anding.+ She went to wor& on his trousers. +?ou"re not + she said again and opening her e(es turned to hi#. . +I"# o&a(. In e*er( wa(.+ Then she laid her hands on either side of his fa$e.+ +1ira $redits (our $onstitution and (our hard head for the healing pro$ess. +Crowing"s not what #ine"s read( for.

+I"# o&a(. She didn"t want hi# to be $areful but he would ta&e $are of her in'uries at least.+ . 5*er the edge of that drowning pool. Don"t hold ba$&.+ She lifted her head loo&ed at hi# again. 5&a(3+ +?es. !ith her brow resting on his she fought to get her breath ba$&. And dro*e her as she dro*e hi#.+ +!or&ing on it though. If an(thing twinged or a$hed she didn"t feel it. I find I li&e it. +?es.+ She unbuttoned his shirt so she $ould press against hi#. !e went through it. +Alwa(s #ore where that $a#e fro# a$e.+ He $ould drown in her he thought e*er( #inute of e*er( da( he $ould lose hi#self in what she was what she ga*e hi# what she too&. .J So he gripped her hips $areful to a*oid the healing wound. Her e(es loo&ed deep into his. I lo*e (ou be(ond the telling of it )*e and what (ou went through%+ +!e. S&in to s&in heart to heart.+ He sat where he was a #o#ent as she got up pulled the tan& ba$& on. !ell now that I"# done with (ou I"# going ba$& to wor&. I want (ou. +Did (ou reall( ha*e business downtown toda(3+ +?ou"re #( business. +?ou ha*e to stop worr(ing. !hat we went through doesn"t heal as 7ui$&l( as a $ut or a bruise. All she felt was pea$e. +I want (ou to tou$h #e. He ga*e her the $ontrols too& his pleasure fro# the rise of her passion fro# the sprint of her heartbeat under his lips. I want (ou to be with #e.+ He pressed his lips to her healing shoulder.ut I will stop ho*ering whi$h I"*e been doing a bit of.+ She rolled her in'ured shoulder nodded in satisfa$tion. !hen she too& hi# in she laid her hands on his fa$e again. +?ou"re holding ba$&. +I feel so used. Don"t.+ +5&a(.+ +All right that"s true enough.+ +That"s ne*er going to happen. Now with her war# and eager against hi# he $ould drown hi#self lose hi#self and set his worr( for her aside.

+ +He(.+ +Don"t loo& at #e. It"s not Saturda( (et.+ She sto#ped to the &it$hen for $offee sto#ped ba$&. . Not $ostu#ing not ph(si$all(. -robabl( dealing with business he"d postponed during the ho*ering #ode.+ . 1a*is sa(s she and 9eonardo and . The answer is I $ouldn"t #a&e an(bod( loo& li&e that and I"# the best. +/ot the ugl( bastard and the 7uestion. +?ou need a treat#ent%hair fa$e bod(. The wor&s. +So.ella $an $o#e to (our pla$e for a *isit on Saturda( afternoon. !e ha*e to stop her. And the nor#al$( that went hand in hand. +I"# not thin&ing about it.+ She wiped a hand through the air.+ She s$owled at her board.ut it has to be one or the other. +-isser. And if that"s it I eli#inate e*er(bod( on #( list. Not 'ust the se0 but the understanding that $a#e with it%or out of it. ?ou"*e got (ourself a frea&a=oid Dallas.+ +1a(be one of (our suspe$ts hired the &illings. -eabod("s $ir$us frea& angle. +Insulting #( hair fa$e and bod( won"t get (ou banged again an(ti#e soon. Couldn"t do the 'aw not that $roo&ed. Through the ad'oining door she heard Roar&e tal&ing on the "lin&. If it"s ph(si$al #a(be it"s long-ter#. I"ll be with the# and bring #( gear. An(thing $ould happen.oth of the# were better now.+ +!h( + Roar&e wondered +do (ou loo& #ore horrified b( that than b( the fa$e on (our board3+ +She"s $o#ing. ?ou $ould use a treat#ent. So#ething he"s learned to li*e with. I"ll ha*e a #assage along with (ou.+ +Traitor.---------------------------------------------Chapter O In her offi$e she set up a se$ond #urder board while the $at sat on her sleep $hair and wat$hed her.+ +?ou &now *er( well I adore (our hair fa$e and bod(. .+ She $ir$led around to her des& noti$ed that her #essage light was a$ti*ated. I belie*e I"ll $onta$t Trina and ha*e her bring another operati*e. Could do the s&in hair ears nose teeth no prob. ?ou $ould use a #assage a rela0ation treat#ent and so#e downti#e with good friends. +Nothing nor#al about that + she said as she studied the s&et$h. In fa$t so $ould I. She $alled up the #essage and a$tuall( 'olted when Trina"s *oi$e spi&ed into the roo#. .+ Though she was an(thing but *ain the $areless $o##ent ga*e her another 'olt. )*er(bod( sa(s it $an"t be done.etter now she de$ided. +Not a da#n thing nor#al there. Could do the red e(es but not so the( loo& li&e red balloons $o#ing out of the so$&ets.

+ +Not as #u$h as one of the# slapping gun& on their fa$e pu#ping the#sel*es full of a Feus $o$&tail and whaling awa( but it"s another route to ta&e. 1a(be. It"s so#ething to po&e at. If he was a hire how did an(bod( &now about hi#%be$ause he"d ha*e popped if he was a pro e*en se#ipro. .+ +Crap.+ It usuall( helped to do 'ust that tal& it through with hi# boun$e theories and angles off hi#.ut this ti#e she felt she onl( $ir$led without getting an( $loser to the $enter. )ither the #edi$al e0perts or the $os#eti$C$ostu#e e0perts.+ She too& it wor&ing angles running probabilities refor#ulating 'uggling through the pie$es. +And if I de$ided to belie*e so#ebod( did I $an"t belie*e he"d sta( off the grid. I li&e it better if the $os#eti$s are wrong but I"*e got to wor& it both wa(s. #a(be he"s a patient at the Center. So#ebod("s wrong. I ran that s&et$h through e*er( progra# we"*e got and didn"t get a single hit. If he &illed the# for hi#self wh( doesn"t an(one else &now about hi#3 @nless .+ +?ou don"t li&e that *er( #u$h. Crap. !hen Roar&e finall( tugged her out of her $hair hours later she was #ore than read( to gi*e it up for the night.+I"# going to run probabilities on that but it rips up the theor(%and it"s #ore than a theor(%that the &iller &new the *i$s. . .+ +1a(be he 'ust ta&es pleasure in his wor&.+ +The h(po-whate*er the #ultiple organ failure%and wh( isn"t he dead if so%and whate*er trau#a would $ause the lower part of his 'aw to be so dislo$ated it"s nearl( under his right ear3 I don"t thin& so. 888 . Clear her head she de$ided. I"*e got to go ba$& to the beginning. 1a(be he"s a &ind of e0peri#ent the("re &eeping on the down low. 9et it si##er for a few hours.+ +1a(be it"s #ore re$ent.+ +As in bot$hed3+ Roar&e twirled so#e seafood linguine on his for&. 1a(be the *i$s &new hi# fro# before and found out he was there $onfronted the #ad-bad s$ientist or threatened to tell people on the outside. Crap. +I don"t belie*e an(one loo&s li&e that + she said. +As in #ad s$ien$e3+ +1ad bad. That it was personal.+ +?ou $an go ba$& with #e o*er a #eal.

>ustin $alled it tea#wor&.illingsl(3 !ell we"ll 'ust ha*e to ta&e $are of that. Chaos. At one point he thought he heard a sound fro=e turned to loo& around.. He thought hi#self *er( $le*er. Senti#ental fool .+ +!hat &ind of si$& 'o&e is this3+ +1( &ind.illingsl( $oded hi#self into >ustin Rosenthall"s lab using a $loned &e( $ard and a re$ording he"d #ade of >ustin"s *oi$e. 5n$e Arianna saw the truth she"d rethin& the relationship and this wedding business.ut I prefer Chaos.+ .+ +I ha*e e*er( right to . He went dire$tl( to the #ain $o#p station noted >ustin had lo$&ed it down for the night. It was ti#e%past it%to pro*e to Arianna she was wasting her ti#e and resour$es on >ustin.ut in this $ase it si#pl( #ade the 'ob easier. @NH@I)T.Shortl( after #idnight )ton . He $ontinued until inspired he tried Ari1. Then shoo& his head at his own foolishness. . .illingsl( $alled it nai*ete.illingsl( $on$luded.+ . >ustin"s ter# for the $ore of addi$tion. Dr.efore he $ould $all it up so#ething $rashed behind hi#. Sti$&ing (our nose where it doesn"t belong aren"t (ou .::<. . +. The date the("d $hosen to be #arried. Hui$&l( now he s$anned through file na#es. +So#e #ight $all #e that + the *oi$e ground out li&e ro$&s beneath a boot heel. . +I"# $onta$ting Se$urit(. +At (our ser*i$e. . . The finan$ial resour$es >ustin wasted had be$o#e intolerable parti$ularl( sin$e the( $ould and should be redire$ted to his own depart#ent. +!hat the de*il%3+ He whirled then fro=e. 5ne da( one of those underlings would steal data and ta&e $redit for whate*er ad*an$e >ustin #anaged to stu#ble onto. The #an was obsessed with this seru# and far too se$reti*e about it in the last wee&s. He tried *arious na#es as passwords wor&ing patientl(. He"d wor&ed with >ustin long enough to &now the #an &ept su$h things si#ple so his assistant and interns $ould a$$ess data when needed.e$ause he was getting nowhere . .ut he ba$&ed up as he spo&e with his heart ha##ering in his dr( throat.illingsl( thought as a$$ess was granted.+ The $reature issued a deep $ape-swishing bow.ut no proble# or *er( little of one.

. The li&elihood is it"s (our #an and sin$e I"# awa&e now in an( $ase I"d li&e to see for #(self. +A$&nowledged.+ . . ?ou don"t ha*e to $o#e.+!anna bet3+ As .+ Affir#ati*e. -ossible ho#i$ide. +I"# on #( wa(. Chaos used the &nife. 888 The signal of her $o##uni$ator pulled )*e out of a drea# where she $hased her &iller while he dan$ed down an e#pt( street 'uggling an ear an e(e and a tongue.+ It was 7ui$&er not to argue. Re7uest that she #eet #e on s$ene as soon as possible.ut before the &nife he used his teeth.illingsl( went down under hi# s$rea#ing. Shit. +Shit. +Dallas. +/ross + she #u#bled then $alled for the lights at ten per$ent before she answered.illingsl( began to run the $reature let out a delighted laugh. . Infor# -eabod( Dete$ti*e Delia. +>ustin Rosenthall"s area. And dro*e faster and better.+ Dispat$h Dallas 9ieutenant )*e. Has the *i$ti# been ID"d3+ Ai$ti# identifi$ation is not $onfir#ed. Report to the !hitwood Center.+ She sho*ed at her hair saw Roar&e was alread( up getting dressed. +Inside 'ob what did I tell (ou3+ She wat$hed buildings whi= b( on the wa( downtown. And $ontinued long after the s$rea#ing stopped. Dallas out. Strength speed e0$ite#ent poured through hi# as he leaped. That"s ho*ering isn"t it3+ +In this $ase it"s sheer $uriosit(. See building se$urit( and offi$er on the door for a$$ess to 9aborator( Si0.esides he had an e(e as good as #ost $ops she &new. +It"s one thing to brea& into the pla$e on Twelfth but it ta&es a lot #ore to get through the se$urit( the( ha*e at the Center.

The originals.ut we ha*e to $he$& out an( unauthori=ed a$ti*it(. .At his non$o##ittal sound she ga*e Roar&e a narrowed stare. +6or #ost people.+ +I &now the wa( too. He was heading down fro# the se$ond le*el east #o*ing fast in a &ind of%boogie. The other part figured so#ebod( was pla(ing a 'o&e.+ She nodded to the unifor# outside the lab doors. The pla$e is wre$&ed 9ieutenant and there"s a bod(. . Rosenthall"s lab so I &e(ed in and I saw .( the ti#e I got to that se$tor%along with the other guard I"d alerted%he was gone. 1( $urrent orders are to re#ain on the door. .+ +/reen defor#ed fa$e red e(es wearing a $ape3+ +I wouldn"t ha*e belie*ed it if I hadn"t seen it #(self. .+ She was out of the $ar the instant Roar&e par&ed flashing her badge at the N?-SD unifor# and the building se$urit( offi$er.+ +?eah. . Shit shit shit. And there"s blood e*er(where. She &nows the wa(. Rosenthall"s lab. He wor&s late a lot. I went up saw the lights were on in Dr.+ +And (ou"*e got hi# on dis$. +Be( #e in Tweed then I"# going to want those dis$s.+ +5&a(. The fa$e it"s well wre$&ed too. . a figure.+ +And stand b( + she told hi#. Tweed3+ +This wa(. I was doing a standard $a# sweep and I saw . +9ieutenant. !re$&ed was a #ild word for it )*e thought as she s$anned the area. Se$urit( 5ffi$er Tweed will ta&e (ou to the s$ene.+ +Has Dete$ti*e -eabod( arri*ed3+ +No sir. !ho found the bod(3+ +I did. It"s #ale but I $ouldn"t tell who it was. -art of #e was spoo&ed I ad#it. .+ +I"ll ta&e $are of it.+ +Send her in when she gets here.

+ +How $an (ou be sure3+ +That"s the suit he had on this #orning. 1e#o to4 9t.+ +He #ight ha*e been lured here. Dallas.+ +!ould (ou li&e #e to see to that area3+ +?eah that would sa*e ti#e. . +1$Nab"s with #e. I had hi# start on Se$urit(. !h( is he in the building and where"s Rosenthall3 I need to &now who &e(ed in before Se$urit(.+ +I doubt he"d feel grateful.+ +Then I"ll go hoo& up with Ian.illingsl(.+ +His nose is gone.+ -eabod( eased out a breath.+ She too& a $an of Seal-It out of her &it used it tossed it to Roar&e.illingsl(K now (ou"re dead. Chaos. +!ow.+ +!hat was he doing in here3 He doesn"t stri&e #e as the t(pe who"d $o#e b( for a late-night *isit with Rosenthall and this isn"t his area. Nobod( li&ed hi# an(wa(. The bod( la( fa$eup%what was left of the fa$e.lood stained the ha$&ed and ripped $lothes spread o*er the floor left its obs$ene abstra$t art on the sides of a $ounter.S#ashed $o#ps la( on the floor on a sea of bro&en bea&ers dishes spe$i#en bowls.+ She turned as -eabod( $a#e in. ?ou"re nos( . To #e it sa(s nos(. He"s another floor up in the other wing. Sin$erel( Dr. +This ta&es hi# off the suspe$t list. And on the top in blood his #essage. !hat does that #ean3 S#ell no e*il3 No that"s 'ust stupid.+ +It sure is. Another da( another slaughter. .ut it"s late wa( after hours. I thought #a(be Roar&e would be here so we"d ha*e two e-#en on it. ?ou"re wel$o#e. +It"s .+ +?eah #a(be.+ .

-o&e his nose in. . 1a(be around Arianna #a(be around so#ething else%so#ething lab related.illingsl( wasn"t a popular gu( around here. He"s not going to do his $o#petitor an( fa*ors.i$&ford but it"s hard to tell.+ To help herself do that -eabod( loo&ed awa( fro# the bod(. +>ustin Rosenthall.+ 5bser*ing and identif(ing the# now -eabod( swallowed hard.+ +?a(. .+ +.+ She s$anned again noted the open door on an e#pt( $abinet. It #ight e*en be #ore than . oh 'ee=.oth insult and sul& piped through -eabod("s *oi$e.+ +!hat does that sa( to (ou3+ +It"s another 7ui=.+ +I"d sa( A #inus. . .+ -ausing she #ade herself loo& at the bod( again. +If he $a#e here% whi$h o&a( ob*iousl( he did%it was to get so#ething on >ustin or s$rew with so#ething or po&e around loo&ing . +I want A plus. He and Rosenthall aren"t pals and this isn"t his area%not onl( se$tor-wise but professionall(.P) + -eabod( $o##ented. +This ti#e blood wasn"t enough.+ Despite the $ir$u#stan$es )*e s#iled a little. He"s a$$elerating + )*e $on$luded. Hit -la(. It sa(s to #e . +He ate hi#.illingsl("s po$&et. He"d $o#e if Arianna as&ed hi# but that puts her in this and it 'ust doesn"t fit well for #e. The note"s addressed dire$tl( to (ou this ti#e so he &nows it"s our $ase%and that .illingsl("s off the suspe$t list. +That"s an A plus.illingsl( won"t be sniffing around an(#ore. He wanted a taste of flesh.+ +>ust here and there. +I $an"t thin& wh( . This ti#e I want a grade.illingsl( would be here. +I see .+!hat do (ou see3+ )*e as&ed -eabod( when the( were alone.+ +A #inus3+ .+ +6or an A plus (ou"d need to obser*e identif( and relate the teeth #ar&s in the *i$"s fa$e and throat.+ . 1a(be if Rosenthall as&ed hi# to $o#e in%but I don"t bu( it.illingsl( tried a little . He"s #issing his nose.+ )*e too& the $loned &e( $ard and re$order out of . +And3+ +He"s been stabbed a whole bun$h.+ +Teeth . 9et #e thin&. +Did the &iller wal& in on the *i$ or the other wa( around3+ +If this is e0tra $redit I want a re*iew of #( earlier grade.

+ +9ow te$h + Roar&e $o##ented. .illingsl("s lifeless hand. The("*e got hi# on dis$ so we"ll be able to tra$& his #o*e#ents.illingsl( &e(s in using the du##( $ard and the re$order.+ )*e loo&ed up as Roar&e $a#e ba$& in.+ +I need the *entilation la(out. Si0 digital lo$&s. +!e got s&in under the nails. boost #e up.+ ---------------------------------------Chapter Q )*e put on #i$rogoggles for a better loo& before she bagged the hand.+ +And see if one of our #ain suspe$ts shows so#e re$ent s$rat$hes.illingsl( swiping in at that ti#e $learl( entering alone. It didn"t ta&e that long to &ill hi#.illingsl( got so#e flesh too. +. +. Chaos at one fifteen. He"s po&ing around. It"s big enough for a #an to get through. .+ +That"s a brea&.ut for now . . !e"ll get DNA. The log shows Rosenthall swiping in again at twel*e oh-se*en but the dis$s show . +9et"s *erif( ID get T5D.+ )*e opened her field &it again $rou$hed b( the bod(. +Tinted green flesh so that"s our gu(. The &iller $hews on hi# stabs hi# a#putates his nose wre$&s the lab ta&es ti#e to lea*e the #essage then boogies out.+ )*e lifted .illingsl(.illingsl( sees hi# and that"s the end of .illingsl( had a $lone swipe and a re$ording of Rosenthall"s *oi$e. /et us a warrant for these lo$&ers. +!e got better. +There"s his a$$ess. No one else entered the lab after the last log.out at ele*en twent(-si0 e0$ept .illingsl(. +1$Nab"s wor&ing with Se$urit( + he told her.+ +T5D + -eabod( announ$ed before Roar&e $ould $o##ent +twel*e fift(. +-eabod(.+ +If there are bite #ar&s the( should get so#e sali*a and the i#pressions too + -eabod( began.+ )*e held up an e*iden$e bag. +)*er(one in the lab logged out Rosenthall being the last at ele*en twent(-si0. .+ 9oo&ing up she studied the open $eiling *ent.ut $lassi$. Conta$t the sweepers and the 1) + )*e ordered then a*oiding blood and debris did another long stud( of the roo# wal&ed o*er to the brea& roo# area. The &iller is alread( here %loo&ing for so#ething doing so#ething waiting for so#ething.+ +Nos( be$o#es *er( apt.+ +That"s a lot of ti#e between when .+ +6or us not for . No one e0ited until (our Dr.+ .+.+ +!ell he didn"t 'ust #ateriali=e. .illingsl(.illingsl( entered and T5D.

erens&i wouldn"t drag hi#self to wor& in the #iddle of the night for less than a first$lass bribe. .+ +!h( didn"t he go out the wa( he $a#e in3+ +Too h(ped up fro# the &ill to $are + she $on$luded. . I don"t li&e it.+ +5&a(.+ +/ood thin&ing + )*e told her. . I want that DNA the sa#e wa(. +?eah the grille"s in here. +1a(be gets into his gear here. So#ething reall( good + she told Roar&e. Through the health $enter area #a(be the *isitor"s lodging prett( #u$h an(where. 9o$&ers bathroo#.+ She set her hands on her hips turned a slow $ir$le.illingsl("s a bonus round.ut a defense attorne( would #a&e noises so a warrant &eeps it $lean. I need so#ething for a bribe. 1a(be he initiall( planned to go ba$& out this wa(.+ She 'u#ped down. +. -ops out then %+ +Are (ou going to sol*e the $ase while I"# holding (ou off the floor3+ Roar&e wondered. The &iller wasn"t e0pe$ting $o#pan(. !ould he be stupid enough to lea*e so#ething in a lo$&er3+ +Shall I open the#3+ +!hen we get a warrant. +6or Di$&head. 9oo& at #e.+ +Sti$&ler + he said and #ade her s#ile. +I $ould $lai# the("re part of the $ri#e s$ene whi$h the( are so the -A $ould probabl( hold that line. This gu( wor&s alone. So he logs out $o#es ba$& in so#ewhere else. +Tight s7uee=e. He $a#e in for the seru# and he got it. Sweepers $ould find tra$es of the #a&eup.5bliging Roar&e hoo&ed his fingers together. +I tagged Cher Reo + she said spea&ing of the A-A. . +H##3 Sorr(. +!as he #eeting . +She"s all o*er the warrant.illingsl( got nos( then got dead.+ Chief 9ab Te$h Di$& . S$oots and $rawls along. !ith her foot in the ha##o$& of his hands )*e boun$ed up gripped the edge of the open *ent. !hen the #orgue gets here I want the s&in sent to the lab asap.( then lea*ing where he"d be $aught on dis$%if he thought of it%'ust added so#e fun. I see so#e s$uff #ar&s.illingsl( here3 In it together there"s a disagree#ent death ensues.+ -eabod( $a#e to the doorwa(. +She was about to $all #e a *er( bad na#e but I showed her the bod(. +-ops out + she $ontinued.+ She too& a penlight out of her po$&et shined it in the s&inn( *entilation tunnel.

His s&inn( fra#e *ibrated with $olor fro# the #an( po$&eted baggies in Da(-/lo orange that pi$&ed up the =igs in his shirt.+ +The( blind the bad gu(s + he $lai#ed still grinning. This gu( I #ean. It"s al#ost as if his whole bod("s dis'ointed.+ He grinned. Then went ba$& to the fa$e. -eabod( wait for the #orgue and the sweepers. She ordered #agnifi$ation ordered free=e repla(. The =ags were nu$lear blue.+ +)0$ellent but we"re still in pla(-offs. )*e glan$ed at the e-#an and -eabod("s $ohab. +?ou"re wearing that getup and tal&ing frea& show. +)as( to find these pants in the dar&. He wore his long blond hair in a tail se$ured with sil*er rings that #at$hed the half do=en hanging fro# his earlobe. 5r he $an #anipulate it be$ause the bites had pun$ture #ar&s li&e those pointed in$isors he"s got.+ +Nothing about this gu( loo&s real + she $orre$ted.+ +Ni$e. 9et"s open those lo$&ers.+Two ti$&ets s&(bo0 first ga#e of the !orld Series with lo$&er-roo# passes. /lo*ed she noted with long sharp nails sli$ing through the tips. +An(wa( Dallas it loo&s real. !hat is his deal3+ +Totall( frea& show + was 1$Nab"s opinion. I want to see those dis$s. +I want (ou to ta&e this in to )DD for a full anal.+ +It"d be eas( to spot the# on 1ars in the night s&( with the na&ed e(e.+ 888 In Se$urit( )*e studied the s$reen the #o*e#ent the fa$e. Along with so#e serious prostheti$s.+ She loo&ed down at her $o# when it signaled. +He $ouldn"t ha*e ta&en those bites out of the *i$ wearing that gear. Nothing"s 7uite right about hi#.+ +!here*er it is%transpo in$luded. I"ll start with one let hi# s7uee=e #e for the se$ond ti$&et% whi$h he will. He loo&s real. +!arrant"s in. So he didn"t put it on until after the &ill. +/otta be a new strain of Feus or so#ething li&e it. I"ll tag hi# on the wa( to Se$urit(.+ 888 . And I want to &now as soon as the warrant $o#es through. I want that s&in hand-$arried to the lab.+ She #agnified again to stud( the hands.

ut I agree with 1$Nab. I also ha*e to agree with hi# that (our &iller doesn"t loo& as if he"s wearing a disguise.+ +?eah I figure those pants $ould blind so#ebod( if the( stared at the# too long.+ +So#ething I tr( to a*oid. +If (ou $an belie*e a s$ientist $an $reate de*i$es and substan$es to disguise hi#self this wa( wh( isn"t it possible for that s$ientist to $reate so#ething that $auses hi# to be this wa(3+ +.e$ause + she said as the( approa$hed the door +appearing and being are different things.+ +1a(be the #ore hu#an fa$e is the real disguise. -oli$e business #o*ed forward with sweepers and the dead $rew alread( at wor&. . And we both saw hi# $ontort his bod( in i#possible wa(s and #o*e at $onsiderable speed.+ +?ou"*e got to la( off those old *ids + she $o##ented and led the wa( to the lab. This gu( isn"t so#e 6ran&enstein #onster. +. He s#iled if (ou $an $all it that. It"s what"s inside the# that"s twisted.+?ou"re not going to li&e this + Roar&e said as the( wal&ed ba$&. His 'aw shifted his #outh turned up. . The("re hu#an 'ust li&e the rest of us.+ +. 1r.ut the("re flesh and blood. +!hat3+ +If his e(es aren"t real if he"s using de*i$es for the si=e the shape how does he blin&3 He loo&ed dire$tl( at the se$urit( $a#era at se*eral points and his e(elids $losed and opened. +. +If he"s a s$ientist%and he da#n well is%he"s figured out how to de*ise so#ething and he"s ta&ing so#ething that boosts his adrenaline. !ith Roar&e she headed straight ba$& to the lo$&ers. So#ething bot$hed.ut for now we"*e got a &iller on a spree and none of #( suspe$ts pop out as a fu$&ed-up s$ien$e e0peri#ent.+ !ith that thought planted in her head she wal&ed into the lab. +1a(be%#a(be%there"s been so#ething going on in this lab that"s wha$&ed. Disguise and so#e &ind of powerful drug. H(de.e$ause it"s a $o#bination. And we"re going to sal*age Rosenthall"s re$ords and find out. 1onsters e0ist + she added.+ +How does he blin&3+ That put a hit$h in her stride.+ He did ha*e a da#n good e(e she thought.+ +A$tuall( I was thin&ing of another $lassi$.+ She paused outside the door.

+There"s still so#e blood so#e #atter. And let"s ha*e all our pla(ers pi$&ed up brought in. +It was all o*er hi# Dallas. 9o*e and grief all o*er hi#. Seal it up get the weapon ta&en to the lab for pro$essing.+ +He"s got this in the lo$&er but doesn"t use it.+ +He wouldn"t be the first to destro( what he lo*ed. Steal the seru# b( unlo$&ing the $abinet rather than busting it up.ut this is so da#n stupid so $areless.+ +None at all + Roar&e agreed. +!eighted it for e0tra pun$h. I"# going into the offi$e. Bills .+ +Should I point out (ou"*e been wor&ing sin$e shortl( after two3 I"ll get #( own 'u#p on the da( and as I"# $urious enough I #a( $o#e down to Central later wat$h (ou lo$& it down. He"s unstable and the drug #a&es hi# #ore so but he"s organi=ed.+ +Now3 It"s .+ +Reads that wa(.She thought of the destru$tion of the lab and the open unbro&en door of the seru# lo$&up. And hit pa( dirt in -a$hai /upta"s. .+ +I ha*e e*er( faith. Ta&es $are not to be seen $o#ing in%but does #urder then shows hi#self.e$ause he wanted us here + -eabod( $on$luded.ig $hun&( hun&s of bread.#.+ She wal&ed out with Roar&e. )*e too& out the sil*er pipe. .illingsl( and unless he"s reall( stupid &nows we"ll sear$h the lo$&ers &nows we"ll 7uestion the fa$t the seru# $abinet was opened with its lo$& $ode. +6ollowing the bread $ru#bs to /upta. .+ +If (ou need the $ar I $ould%/uess (ou don"t + she added when a dar& li#o glided s#oothl( to the $urb. +It"s sh( of fi*e a. +No point in busting the# open sin$e (ou"re here. It didn"t ta&e hi# long. +I &now I did the inter*iew and I hate thin&ing I #issed an(thing but a fra#e-up #a&es #ore sense. No not $ru#bs. As he #o*ed down the line of lo$&ers un$oding the lo$&s she $alled -eabod( in for the sear$h. It shows so#e ni$&s and dents where it hit bone. And he didn"t e*en $lean it thoroughl( + )*e noted.+ +. Then 'ust lea*e one of the #urder weapons in (our wor& lo$&er3+ +A fra#e-up3 It #a&es #ore sense to #e + -eabod( said. . +A fra#e-up if that"s what it is that"s hu#an. )ither wa( with the weapon the DNA we"ll lo$& it down. So"s s$rewing up and lea*ing e*iden$e where it $an be found if that"s what it is. .+ -eabod( shoo& her head.+ She $he$&ed the ti#e as the( stepped outside.+ +He lo*ed her%Darnell.

+ +!e alread( agreed to ter#s.erens&i"s in& bla$& hair was sli$&ed ba$& o*er his eggshaped head.efore what3+ +.+ She wat$hed hi# dri*e awa( then went ba$& in to tal& to the head sweeper and get -eabod( for the trip to the lab.+ +Ne*er a proble#.+ He tou$hed her $hee&.+I"# going to hit the lab first gi*e Di$&head a push.+ He shot her a sour loo& and sin$e the last ti#e she"d seen hi# he"d been s$aril( sweet%and in lo*e%she assu#ed there was trouble in paradise.+ +That was before. And I want that s$ot$h.+ +!hat about #( s&in3+ +She goes first. +.+ +Too #an( old horror *ids and an Irish nature.+ +5h I"ll gi*e (ou so#ething. I"# not offi$iall( on (et. ?ou"ll set the healing on that ar# ba$&. It"s fi*e-fu$&ing-a.+ He pla(ed his spider fingers o*er his $o#p. A DNA #at$h will sa*e the inno$ent b(standers fro# a round in the bo0.efore I got here and found Harpo pulling an all-nighter.+ . +She"ll $o#e out here.+ +!h( is that #( proble#3+ +She"s on (our hair%first #urder%and (ou"re not going to li&e it. 888 Di$& .+ +Tr( not to pun$h hi#. And I want a bottle of single #alt s$ot$h for the ga#e. Rather than his usual lab $oat he wore a #ulti$olored floral shirt that would ha*e #ade e*en 1$Nab win$e. +!hat the hell are (ou wearing3+ +Clothes.+ +6ine fine if (ou gi*e #e so#ething I $an use.#. +Ta&e $are will (ou3 This one gi*es #e a *er( uneas( feeling. Than&s for the bribe. I thin& I $an handle so#e #urderous s$ientist.

+?eah but it"s got an aftertaste.+ +Not what Harpo3+ +It"s not s(ntheti$.+ +)0$use #e + )*e said brutall( polite.+ .erens&i.+ Harpo pointed a finger tipped with a #etalli$ purple nail. There"s so#ething about drin&ing blue that feels energi=ing.+ +?eah (eah o&a(. +. +Ha*e (ou tried the new bla$& $herr( fla*or3+ -eabod( as&ed her.+ +!hat do (ou #ean3+ +Sorr( I"*e been at this all night. ?ou want to eli#inate ani#al%li&e a rat or a stra( $at whate*er.+ +!hat is3+ +The hair.lue 9agoon.ut I $an"t "$ause it"s not. +5n one hand this is totall( i$ed. 5n the other it"s #a'orl( fu$&ed.+ +If (ou sa( so.+ +That"s right.+ She gestured with the 'u#bo tube in her hand before she too& a gulp. +I got hair fro# (our $ri#e s$ene. So + she said swi*eling to )*e. It"s got a ni$e =ing.erens&i"s. . It"s sort of both. I"# a little wired on . /ot so#e not theirs but no roots. ID"d so#e fro# ea$h of (our *i$s no prob.+ +It $an"t be both. S(ntheti$ hu#an if it was treated $olor and li&e that.erens&i for per#ission then used one of the $o#ps to $all up her file. I"# prett( well hoo&ed on the 9e#on Fest.ut it"s not e0a$tl( hu#an and not e0a$tl( ani#al. +?o + she said to )*e and -eabod( then dropped onto a stool. +!hat (ou ha*e here + she said tapping that bright nail to the i#age +is hu#an hair and this+%she split the s$reen with a se$ond i#age %+is ape. So no DNA for (ou on that but I started a standard anal. +This tal& of fla*ors and fa*orites is fas$inating but #a(be we $ould ta&e a #o#ent to dis$uss%oh I don"t &now%e*iden$e3+ +Sure + Harpo said as -eabod( $leared her throat. And I $ould%I figured an(wa(%gi*e (ou so#e basi$s. .ut it is.Harpo all spi&( red hair and tired e(es wal&ed out fro# her se$tion into . And I $an"t. +?ou tell her3+ she as&ed . I"# the goddess of hair and fiber and if I $an"t ID it nobod( $an.+ She glan$ed at .oost.+ +I li&e . +I said (ou"d do it. That"s solid.

It is what it is + he snapped out before )*e $ould protest. /et it3+ +5&a( (eah.+S$ien$e sa(s. In fa$t this is the first ti#e e*er be$ause it"s wa( out of orbit and he"s the best there is% an(where. It"s green down through the sub$utaneous tissue. DNA"s li&e nothing I"*e seen before and I"*e seen it all. This sort of #utation shouldn"t be possible. So3+ +So this%+ Harpo added another i#age.ut I"*e got hair%fi*e sa#ples% that sa(s it is. Sa#e result. 9oo& Dallas it"s not li&e I go running to Dadd( whene*er I hit a snag. +5&a( this is fro# (our $ri#e s$ene.+ He sho*ed up sto#ped awa(. Not all the wa(. +?ou"*e got so#e #utant frea& running around &illing people. It $learl( shows $hara$teristi$s of both%rough and s#ooth%on one strand.+ +S$ien$e doesn"t lie.+ +/i*e #e a brea& Harpo. I ran this through e*er(thing I"*e got and did the sa#e with the other strands the sweepers sent #e. ?our *i$ got so#e blood along with the flesh and that"s not right either.erens&i folded his ar#s. ?ou got green s&in. 5n the ape hair the("re rough %the( li&e protrude. It s$rews up so#eti#es but it doesn"t lie. I get what Harpo got on the hair. Not #a&eup not tinted. !hat (ou got here Dallas is #utant hair. . About two this #orning I ga*e up and tagged #( old #an%+ +?our%+ +1( father"s head of forensi$s at Huanti$o.+ +/reen blood3+ )*e as&ed read( to be anno(ed all o*er again. I want so#e fu$&ing $offee.+ +So (ou"re telling #e I"# loo&ing for an ape-#an3 Seriousl(3+ +I don"t &now what the hell (ou"re loo&ing for is what I"# telling (ou.+ +I #ean green. It"s li&e so#ebod( #ated a hu#an with an ape and here"s the hair of the result. A $o#bination of hu#an and ape.+ . See on the hu#an hair the $uti$le s$ales o*erlap s#oothl(. .+ +5&a( Harpo o&a(.+ +I &now that godda#n it. Co#e on Di$&ie gi*e her (ours so she stops loo&ing at #e li&e the( let #e out of the ward too earl(. +It"s red enough but it"s not hu#an. !hat was his ta&e3+ +He"s stu#ped 'ust li&e #e. +Harpo got what she got and I got what I got.

ut the fa$e Dallas. >e&(ll"s the good part. The( $reated a #onster%a &iller ape-#an #onster. And one #ore bullshit.+ )*e s7uee=ed the bridge of her nose. H(de + she #uttered. Rosenthall"s 1r.+ +)0peri#ents + )*e $ontinued.+ +Not when (ou"re on the re$ei*ing end. If the( both $o#e up with the sa#e results and reall( when (ou loo& at the &iller he"s 'ust not . So#ething unauthori=ed and twisted. +?ou &now Harpo"s solid. .+ +All the wa( down3+ +5b*iousl(. +1a(be that"s not so far off. .ut the("re the sa#e person. The("re doing so#e sort of weird e0peri#ents in Rosenthall"s lab. +5h oh Rosenthall $reated the e*il Dr. No wait Dr. ?ou get hair I $an #at$h it. 1( old #an he"d li&e to $onsult on this if (ou gi*e hi# the nod.+ +1r. 1r.ullshit. H(de.ullshit.+ +That"s what I"# sa(ing.ut . H(de3+ -eabod( s$ooted up and o*er in her seat. 9ouise said that $ould $ause a green $ast to the s&in.+ . And%+ +Don"t #a&e #e slap (ou. !isel( -eabod( &ept her thoughts to herself. And now it"s bro&en out and wrea&ing ha*o$ on the $it(. . .ut it shouldn"t be a proble# to find so#e half-ape gu( with green s&in. . She #anaged to be wise until the("d gotten ba$& in the $ar. >e&(ll. He $an #at$h it if (ou get hi# the &iller"s. +I"# going to get DNA fro# the suspe$ts. . +I don"t &now but we"re going to grill Rosenthall li&e a trout until he $lears this up. H(de"s the e*il one. Right3+ +>esus + was all )*e $ould thin& of. It s$rews up the DNA $auses se*ere ane#ia. And Di$&head"s a di$&head but he"s one of the best there is. !hen I do $an (ou #at$h it to this3+ +Di$&ie"s got DNA fro# the s&in and blood the *i$ s$raped off. It"s so da#n girlie.+ She wanted to belie*e it was prostheti$s a de*i$e so#e sort of elaborate #as&. It is what it is. . +The seru#.+ +. .+His girlfriend du#ped hi# a $ouple da(s ago + Harpo said. +He hasn"t said it but we figure.+ +Hu#an3 . He"s been hell to be around sin$e. .ut he"s right.

He destro(ed the lab too& the seru#.+ +Ben Di$&erson. It #a&es hi# happ( and #ore he"s found out &illing #a&es hi# e*en happier. /upta $o#es fro# a fa#il( of do$tors s$ientists and had a leg up sin$e his father &nows Rosenthall. Rosenthall"s lab.+ +It pla(s but it doesn"t e0plain the #utations. He doesn"t want an(one else to ha*e what he"s got.+ +!h( not &ill -a$hai3+ +5ne of the first three *i$s got wind of so#ething Di$&erson was up to so the( had to go.+ +/od. .+ +So Rosenthall better + she said as she pulled into the garage at Central. Now #a(be he #o*ed she de$ided she wasn"t interested after all. It"s all his.ut when3 How3+ +Shortl( before one this #orning in Dr. .+ +In >ustin"s lab3 . It #a&es hi# feel powerful free.+ +Thin& about it. Di$&erson had to wor& his wa( through push for s$holarships.a$& to -a$hai. . The( said )ton"s been #urdered. .+ . It is a fra#e-up. And /upta"s still ahead of hi#. +!e"ll ta&e hi# first.+ +/upta"s Rosenthall"s assistant. And goll( where do we find one of the #urder weapons3 In /upta"s lo$&er%with blood and brain #atter still on it. /upta"s $aught the e(e of Darnell e*en though Di$&erson went to his un$le and got her wor&%then did her another fa*or and got wor& for Ai0. !hat better wa( to destro( /upta than b( &illing the girl he lo*ed and pinning it on hi#3 !hate*er he"s on #a&es hi# feel superior but that was alread( in there. Di$&erson"s still an intern. +9ieutenant Dallas please $an (ou tell #e what"s happening3 The poli$e $a#e to #( ho#e this #orning. As )*e headed down to Ho#i$ide Arianna sprang up fro# a ben$h in the $orridor and rushed toward her.+ +.+D #inus and onl( be$ause (ou got the na#es right. !h( would Rosenthall &ill >ennifer Darnell%in that #anner3 That personal inti#ate #anner3 The &iller wanted her and $ouldn"t ha*e her.ut who"s the odd #an out in this3 !ho got Darnell and her friend the 'obs at Sli$e3 /ets her and her friend wor& but she"s #ore interested in /upta. ?ou said he lo*ed her%and wit state#ents indi$ate she was interested.+ +That"s $orre$t.+ -------------------------------------Chapter 1.ut I don"t .

illingsl( would ha*e been in Dr. I had a fund-raiser and $alled >ustin fro# the $ar when I left.+ +I understand. He shouldn"t ha*e been. He"s dead. The( too& hi# so#ewhere else wouldn"t let #e sta( with hi#.+ +I"# also going to read (ou (our rights. If he wants a law(er present he $an ha*e one. +So it"s true + he said +about . >ustin Rosenthall on the #atters of Darnell Ai0 and .She $losed her e(es a #o#ent. Can I see hi# now3 Do we need a law(er3+ +He"s not under arrest but I need to as& hi# a few 7uestions. . I ha*e to re$ord this.+ +I"# sorr( it"s ta&en so long. No.illingsl( $ase nu#ber H-GEOQO.+ +?ou left the Center together3+ +?es about ele*en thirt( I thin&.+ +. . I swear it. I as&ed hi# to $o#e ho#e with #e sta( with #e.+ Arianna rubbed a hand between her breasts ba$& and forth.ut what happened3 1( /od this is a night#are.+ +Do (ou &now wh( Dr. Re$ord on Dallas 9ieutenant )*e in Inter*iew with Dr. -ro$edure. I"# going to be tal&ing to Dr. The &iller #ust ha*e been after >ustin. >ustin straightened in his $hair when )*e entered. Rosenthall.+ As long as it ta&es )*e thought as she headed toward the first inter*iew roo#.+ As she did >ustin said nothing. !e%/od it see#s $ruel now% we"d 'o&e about it so#eti#es.illingsl(. !hitwood to the lounge3 She $an wait there while we tal& to Dr. I wanted hi# with #e and I was upset enough that he ga*e in. The( 'ust said I had to wait. He"s not in*ol*ed in >ustin"s wor&. After >ustin. ?ou $an"t belie*e >ustin had an(thing to do with this. !e were together all night.GIOQE and )ton . Rosenthall"s lab at that ti#e of night3+ +No. )ton #urdered and in >ustin"s lab. It shouldn"t be long.+ +Did an(one sta( in the lab3+ +I don"t &now.i$&ford $ase nu#ber H. -eabod( wh( don"t (ou ta&e 1s. >ustin #et #e out front. +How $an this be happening3 The( said we needed to $o#e here%>ustin and I. It"s been #ore than an hour. +He was going to wor& late sta( in his offi$e again last night but I as&ed hi# not to. I &now people tal& about )ton being 'ealous of hi#.+ +!as he3+ +?es but >ustin isn"t bothered b( it.+ +?es. Rosenthall shortl(.

+Do (ou understand (our rights and obligations3+ +?es. ?ou thin& I &illed the#3+ She let the 7uestion hang a #o#ent. He loo&ed worn-out she noted as Arianna had. +All the *i$ti#s were $onne$ted to (ou and the Center. .illingsl( was #urdered in (our lab.+ +In #( lab3+ +?es. There are 7uestions that ha*e to be as&ed but first I"d li&e a sa#ple of (our DNA.+ +1(%all right but it"s on file.+ +>ust $onsider it a spot $he$&.+ She too& out a swab. !hen it was done she went to the door passed it off to the waiting unifor#. She sat at the table a$ross fro# >ustin. +!hat was .illingsl( doing in (our lab3+ +I ha*e no idea. He shouldn"t ha*e been there. He shouldn"t ha*e been able to get in without #( authori=ation. How did he3+ +He $loned (our swipe $ard and had a re$ording of (our *oi$e.+ >ustin si#pl( stared at her. +He went that far3 He disli&ed #e%that"s not news%but I $an"t belie*e he"d go as far as brea&ing into the lab. And for what3+ +!ould he ha*e business with (our assistant or interns3+ +No none I $an thin& of. And he &new none of us were there. I saw hi# before I left and he $o##ented on the fa$t that I was a$tuall( going ho#e.+ +?ou didn"t get along.+ +Not well.+ >ustin bra$ed his elbows on the table pushed his hands o*er his fa$e ba$& into his hair. +That"s no se$ret as he #ade it *er( $lear he didn"t thin& I was good enough for Ari%and he was.+ +That #ust ha*e pissed (ou off.+ +So#e + he ad#itted. +.ut fran&l( I didn"t gi*e .illingsl( #u$h thought. Arianna lo*es #eK we"re about to be #arried. And #( wor& o$$upies the rest of #( thoughts at this stage.+ +!hat is this stage3+

+!e"re about to begin the ne0t round of testing.+ +1eaning3+ )*e said as -eabod( entered. +-eabod( Dete$ti*e Delia entering Inter*iew. /o on Do$tor.+ +!e"*e in'e$ted a test group of lab rats with spe$ifi$ addi$ti*e substan$es o*er a $ourse of ti#e.+ +?ou"*e #ade addi$ts out of rats3+ +?es. !e obser*e and #onitor $hart re$ord. Now we"ll in'e$t the# with the seru# run the# through tests. 5n$e we%+ +?ou don"t test on hu#an sub'e$ts.+ +No. That"s #onths off #a(be (ears. This isn"t a 7ui$& pro$ess. !e $an"t ris& testing an unpro*en substan$e on a hu#an being.+ +It #ust be te#pting to push it so#e to &i$& up the pa$e.+ +?ou don"t go into resear$h to rush.+ +Do (our assistants e*er get ants(3+ +I"# sorr(3+ +1a(be (our assistants want to ta&e it up a not$h show off so#e i#press (ou.+ +The("re (oung. Sure there"s so#e frustration i#patien$e% $o#petition fro# ti#e to ti#e. .ut we ha*e a *er( stri$t proto$ol a ti#etable pro$edures that #ust be followed not onl( for su$$ess but for safet(.+ +!ho has a$$ess to the seru#3+ +It"s lo$&ed in the lab in an en*iron#entall( $ontrolled $ase. No one but #(self and -a$hai ha*e a$$ess. ?ou don"t thin& .illingsl( tried to%+ +The $ase was open + )*e told hi#. +And e#pt(.+ +)#pt(3+ 9oo&ing stri$&en Rosenthall rubbed at his te#ple. +The seru#"s gone3 /od. /od, !e"re so $lose. A $o#peting lab3 )spionage3 !ould .illingsl( ha*e done that3+ +?our two interns $an"t a$$ess the seru#3+ +No. !ell that"s not $o#pletel( a$$urate. Ben"s wor&ed late with #e se*eral nights and I ga*e hi# the $ode. I $hange it e*er( three da(s. I"d ha*e $hanged it this #orning in fa$t. !e $an re-$reate the seru#. .ut the ti#e lost . . .+ He shoo& his head. +.ut I don"t understand what this has to do with the #urders with >en and the bo(s. I $an"t belie*e the("d be in*ol*ed in so#e plot to steal or sell the wor&.+

+That"s o&a(. I understand. Inter*iew end. If (ou"d 'ust wait here a #inute. -eabod(3+ +?ou"re $utting hi# loose3+ -eabod( as&ed when the( stepped out. +I want (ou to ta&e hi# to the lounge as& hi# and Arianna to wait. I #ight need hi# to tal& to Di$&erson interpret so#e of the s$ien$e stuff when we get to it. Then do a round with /upta. He #a( ha*e so#ething to add here and he &nows (ou now.+ +5&a(. ?ou"re ta&ing Di$&erson alone3+ +I"ll start on hi#. !hen (ou thin& (ou"*e got all (ou $an get fro# /upta ta&e hi# to the lounge then $o#e in to Inter*iew.+ +Che$&.+ +And bring Di$&erson a drin&.+ -eabod( sighed. +.e$ause I"# good $op.+ +So far.+ )*e wal&ed down to the ne0t inter*iew roo# entered. +Dallas 9ieutenant )*e + she began and $o#pleted the do$u#entation. +He( Ben (ou loo& a little wrung out.+ +I"*e been waiting a long ti#e. 9i&e two hours.+ A little sweat( )*e obser*ed. Hollow-e(ed and *er( pale. +These things ta&e ti#e.+ She read hi# his rights wat$hed those hollow e(es widen. +I"# a suspe$t3 !h( are (ou sa(ing all that3+ +6or (our prote$tion Ben. >ust pro$edure. ?ou &now about pro$edure. Do (ou understand (our rights (our obligations3+ +?es but I don"t understand wh(%+ +6our people are dead Ben and (ou &new all of the#.+ +I"# not the onl( one who%+ +!e"re tal&ing to the others. So what did (ou thin& of .illingsl(3+ she $ontinued $on*ersationall(. +An asshole right3+ +I don"t reall( ha*e an opinion. I didn"t &now hi# reall(.+ +Ta&e #( word. Asshole. An(bod( who tries to horn in on another #an"s wo#an espe$iall( when she"s not interested is an asshole.+

She s#iled when she said it wat$hed his e(es s&itter awa(. +I nearl( forgot.+ She too& out a swab. +I need so#e spit. DNA $he$&.+ +I%I don"t ha*e to do that.+ +Seriousl(3 It"s 'ust so#e spit Ben.+ +I don"t ha*e to do that unless (ou ha*e a warrant. That"s #( right.+ +Suit (ourself.+ She shrugged. +Now about assholes.+ +Should I get a law(er3+ +Do (ou want one3 6ine with #e. It"ll ta&e #ore ti#e. -robabl( a $ouple #ore hours.+ She started to rise. +It"s o&a( for now. I 'ust want to get out of here.+ +Can"t bla#e (ou. 9i&e I said (ou loo& wrung out. @p late3+ +I didn"t sleep well. It"s hard with what happened.+ +I bet. ?ou li&ed >en.+ +)*er(bod( li&ed >en.+ +.ut (ou reall( li&ed her. ?ou got her a 'ob.+ +It was no big deal.+ +Co#e on ta&e so#e $redit. An addi$t with barel( a #onth"s re$o*er( under her belt before (ou as&ed (our un$le to gi*e her a brea&. Then (ou do her another solid and help her addi$t friend get a 'ob. She owed (ou.+ +I was 'ust tr(ing to help.+ +Did she pa( (ou ba$&3+ +I don"t &now what (ou #ean.+ +I don"t thin& she did not when she had her e(e on -a$hai%and he had his on her. That #ust"*e stung.+ He s$rat$hed at his ar#s as if so#ething $rawled along his s&in. +She was 'ust a friend.+ +.e$ause that"s the wa( she wanted it. And -a$hai what did he do for her3 He didn"t get her and her addi$t friend 'obs. His un$le didn"t gi*e her food to ta&e ho#e. He $o#es fro# #one( though. Isn"t that

+ +I"# not sa(ing an(thing else. No *isible s$rat$hes she thought. The wa( I loo& at it things 'ust got out of hand out of (our $ontrol. 5ff the boo&s so to spea&. ?ou"re willing to ta&e so#e ris&s. !e"re going to get a sear$h warrant for (our apart#ent and we"re going to find (ours.+ . Rosenthall"s so $onser*ati*e su$h a sti$&ler for proto$ol pro$edure. . Then%+ +?ou $an"t find the pipe at #( pla$e be$ause . +-eabod( Dete$ti*e Delia entering Inter*iew. Did she $at$h (ou at it or did (ou tell her3 Had to brag about it. And when she $a#e ba$& in )*e thought she"d ta&e the tube%and ha*e his DNA. -ut in #ore hours. ?ou had a reall( bad rea$tion to the seru#. It"s not right.ut he"d left his hair down o*er the ba$& of his ne$&. +?ou"re #a&ing all this up.+ +Rules. +I bet (ou put in lots of (our own ti#e on that pro'e$t.ut he too& the tube $ra$&ed it gu==led.+ +Suit (ourself. And Rosenthall"s po&ing along with his (es-#an /upta getting all the attention%and the girl.+ +A# I3 S$ientists &eep re$ords. Ha*e a drin& Ben ta&e a little ti#e to thin&.ut (ou $an show the# (ou"re better s#arter. Real progress is ris&( ta&es ga#bles. +Real inno*ation sa(s s$rew the rules.alwa(s the wa(3 /ets to be Rosenthall"s head gu(%o*er (ou. . In fa$t she threatened to tell on (ou if (ou didn"t stop. 6lirted with hi# right in front of (ou. +I don"t &now what (ou"re tal&ing about. To tell Rosenthall (ou were e0peri#enting with his wor& testing it and not on rats.ut (ou"*e got balls. . .+ He began to shi*er now as if $old e*en while the sweat dribbled down his te#ples. ?ou wor&ed harder I bet. . .+ +She $a#e in the lab a lot didn"t she3 1a&ing e0$uses to drop in so she $ould see -a$hai.ut she still didn"t want (ou. Did she $o#e b( when (ou were wor&ing alone one night3 5ff the boo&s. He $ould use that. !e"re going to find the pipe (ou used to beat Cob( Ai0 to death with. Rosenthall"s there.+ )*e sat ba$& wat$hed hi# sweat a few #o#ents until -eabod( $a#e in with a tube of ginger ale. . ?ou"re s#arter%I $an tell. ?ou"*e got ideas don"t (ou Ben3 Ideas about the seru#. Did (ou let her in3+ +!e"re not allowed to wor& in the lab off hours unless Dr.+ +!h( is that Ben3+ +I"# not tal&ing an(#ore. Did >en find out (ou were ta&ing one3+ He &ept s$rat$hing swallowing loo&ing an(where but at )*e. .+ )*e wa*ed the# awa(.+ She leaned forward.usting (our ass.

His shoulders shoo&.+ +/ood idea. 9iterall(. Dallas 9ieutenant )*e and -eabod( Dete$ti*e Delia e0iting the roo#.+Thin& about it + )*e suggested. I thin& he"s been ta&ing the seru#%or a *ersion of it. +Now we"re getting so#ewhere. That stupid $ape the glo*es the shoes #a(be the &nife and s$alpel. She"d thought little $ould genuinel( surprise her at this stage of her life and $areer but she fro=e in sho$&. -eabod("s bringing Rosenthall into 5bser*ation in $ase we need an interpreter for the s$ien$e. He"s got logs and re$ords. +He loo&s li&e%+ +An addi$t 'onesing for a fi0. +Inter*iew pause. I"# about to go in for the se$ond round. Chaos to (ou. +Dallas 9ieutenant )*e reentering Inter*iew. . >esus Ben #an up.+ He ga*e her a tap on the $hin then strolled off%as at ho#e in the $op shop as she was she thought. /o get hi# ta&e hi# to an obser*ation roo#.+ +I"ll go find the#. 9et"s get a sear$h warrant for his apart#ent. He"s either going to $ra$& or law(er up%that $ould go either wa(.+ Roar&e plugged in $redits ordered her a tube of -epsi.+ +He loo&s sweat( sha&( + -eabod( began outside the door. And I thin& he dosed hi#self real good two nights in a row. !e"*e got enough for that.+ She ar$hed her e(ebrows at the rough sound of his *oi$e. The #a$hines didn"t alwa(s $ooperate with her. I"# going to gi*e Di$&erson another $ouple #inutes.+ +That"s Dr. !hen she stepped in Di$&erson was standing in the far $orner fa$ing the wall. +Than&s.+ +1a(be we should ha*e Rosenthall obser*e the ne0t round.+ She $ould use a drin& herself )*e thought and ga*e Aending a hard e(e. He"s s$ared too. Ha*e a seat Do$ and we"ll%+ He turned.+ +I"*e got Di$&erson sweating in the bo0. It"s got hi# strung out. Co#e to wat$h the show3+ +It"s usuall( worth the pri$e of ad#ission. +9et #e do that. She $ra$&ed the tube too& a long drin& then wal&ed ba$& to the inter*iew roo#. 9i&e (ou said if he gets into the s$ien$e Rosenthall $ould tell us what it #eans.

+ +I $an"t die.+ +Not for #u$h longer. +/o down (ou fu$&. He $ried o*er the girl but he en'o(ed &illing . +!hat (ou are is under arrest.+ )*e #uttered the oaths% pra(ers%as she snapped on restraints. She had a fra$tion of a se$ond to prepare and used the for$e of his bod( ra##ing hers to go down &i$& up and send hi# fl(ing o*er her and into the wall.+ She fired again &ept firing. ?ou"re s#art.ut not prett(. +And I"# not a #an. +I want leg irons + she $alled out. He $areened off bloodied and ni#ble as a spider. Then he s#iled. +Allow #e.ut (ou $an.+ She pulled her weapon.+ +. It slowed hi# $aused hi# to stu#ble but he $a#e on. . )*en if (ou get through #e (ou won"t get out.illingsl(.lood strea#ing bod( spas#ing Chaos went down.+ +He"s still in (ou. ?ou"re an inse$t to #e. Roar&e rushed in steps ahead of -eabod( and a swar# of $ops. 9et"s #o*e. This ti#e when she fired he 'er&ed. +?ou"re in the #iddle of Cop Central. !ea& and brea&able. Isolation.+ He leaped at her. All of (ou. There was too #u$h ani#al in hi# not to. -eabod( &eep (our weapon on hi#. +>esus Christ >esus Christ >esus Christ. !e"re going to $ar*e out (our heart and eat it. .+ .+ )*e shouted. +I"# a god. I"# so #u$h stronger now. She got a strea# off was sure she stru$& #idbod( but he was so fast. +Now. Chaos whirled snarled%'ittered fro# the stun strea#s. +5ooh it ti$&les.His fa$e rippled in front of her e(es. The wea& and brea&able Di$&erson. Right left right again. The door burst open. ?ou"ll die here. His teeth sharpenedK his e(es protruded and bulged in their so$&ets and began to glea# red.elie*e #e + her partner responded.+ He would atta$& again she thought. Si$&l( green it twisted itself until the 'aw lo$&ed at a grotes7ue angle. He"ll en'o( &illing (ou.+ 6a$e $old and fier$e Roar&e ra##ed his fists into the twisted fa$e. .+ +So I see.+ She heard the snap and $ra$& of #igrating bones as his spine see#ed to warp. +I want hi# sha$&led in a $age before he $o#es to.

His *ersion of it. Di$&erson was dead the first ti#e he too& the seru#.+ ----------------------------------------)pilogue )*e found hi# waiting in her offi$e settled in her ratt( *isitor"s $hair with his --C. +He"s d(ing.+ +6our people slaughtered. To pro*e to her he was better than -a$hai better e*en than Rosenthall. As the people Rosenthall"s tr(ing to help are to the illegals. I"ll be ba$&.+ +He pro#ised he"d do what she said then in$reased the dose. >ealous a#bitious re$&less. +No. He set it aside when she $a#e in and with one loo& at her fa$e went to the AutoChef progra##ed $offee for both of the#. And he( than&s for the assist + she added as she #o*ed aside to let so#e of the #en lift Chaos. +1ultiple organ failure% 9ouise had that one.+ +He was an idiot%Di$&erson.+ )*e dropped down at her des&.+ +It"s ne*er 'ust about $losed $ases for (ou. He was so proud had to show off. And now we"ll ha*e fi*e bodies. 5r not until he started ta&ing the seru#. She was bla$&-and-white on it. +?eah I"d sa(. He"d i#pro*ed it so he thought. Di$&erson"s barel( able to tal& but we got all we need to $lose the $ases. He 'ust didn"t &now it. Now he"s d(ing be$ause he unleashed so#ething in hi#self that per*erted what he was what he wanted. . And he"s got a brain tu#or for good #easure. Rosenthall"s with hi# now%prett( #u$h $rushed. So#ething he $ouldn"t $ontrol. If he didn"t tell his boss she would be$ause he was #a&ing hi#self si$& she said. !hat he be$a#e was as addi$ted to &illing as Di$&erson was to the seru#. Roar&e wat$hed her go then glan$ed down at his raw &nu$&les. The("re not going to be able to sa*e hi#.+ +And that onl( #ade hi# ta&e #ore.+Are (ou hurt3+ Roar&e gripped her hand as she rose.+ +?eah. +He would ha*e &illed (ou. He was going to i#press the girl his boss the whole fu$&ing world. Instead she disappro*ed told hi# he had to go to Rosenthall had to stop. Had to hope she"d see how spe$ial he was and want hi# the wa( he wanted her. He as&ed Darnell to $o#e into the lab. +Ah well.+ +She would ha*e re$ogni=ed the addi$tion + Roar&e $on$luded.+ +I"# tr(ing to be sorr( as (ou see# to be.+ Roar&e sat on the $orner of her des& fa$ing her.+ . I"*e got to get hi# $ontained.ut he wasn"t a #urderer.

He sa(s he thought the #urders were a drea# a hallu$ination. +I guess it too& a &no$& in there.+ +I"d stunned the shit out of hi# + she began.+ He tou$hed the shagg( tips of her hair. +!ell in this $ase. +And (eah he #ight"*e gotten a pie$e of #e an(wa(.+ +I &now what that #eans. I"ll lea*e (ou to it then find #(self a spot to finish a bit of business. He &new what he"d done. I saw what he was or what he was be$o#ing. And when we get ho#e tonight we"ll ta&e $are of that ar#.+ +>ealous( again.+ +The green-s&inned #onster. +Alwa(s. !e ne*er 7uite see e*er(thing there is do we3 !hat I did see was the delight%the #urderous delight on his fa$e.+ He laughed &issed her again. !e #issed brea&fast altogether.+ She finished off her $offee set it and the sadness aside. Tag #e when (ou"re done. I"ll wait for (ou. I don"t &now wh(. I didn"t &now if I"d get there get to (ou in ti#e. I"ll ta&e (ou to lun$h% whene*er. +?ou"*e had it $radled sin$e (ou sat down.+ +!ell then (ou"d loosened the lid.+ He leaned forward tou$hed his lips to hers.illingsl( was tr(ing to ha$& into Rosenthall"s $o#puter when he got to the lab.+ +And this $ase is $losed.+ +I $an grab so#ething.+And Chaos was born.+ +/uilt(. +I don"t.+ +)*e. +I"d 'ust stepped into 5bser*ation when he turned around. ?ou finished hi# off real ni$e. He 'ust $ouldn"t fa$e it on one side $ouldn"t gi*e it up on the other. ?ou don"t ha*e to wait around.+ +No + she $onfir#ed. +I need to write it up and I pro#ised Nadine I"d gi*e her a head start.+ +?ou don"t belie*e that.+ .+ +Sap.+ Roar&e started to $orre$t her then shrugged.+ +6riendship and be$ause (ou &now she"ll be fair and a$$urate. Di$&erson told us .+ She glan$ed down saw he was right.+ +I guess that"s true enough.

+ +Sounds good. She loo&ed out at New ?or&%safe for the #o#ent fro# one of the #onsters who hunted. .+ And it did she thought when he"d left her to find his 7uiet spot.efore the wor& she rose wal&ed to her s&inn( window.She released it too& his hand to e0a#ine his &nu$&les.+ +Then we"ll ta&e $are of ea$h other. And stood awhile holding *igil for the d(ing. +?ou too. .

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