This is a very special post. Not only do you finally find out who the bad guy is, but… It is my 1000th post. :) Fair warnings…. Dragons… um… Werewolves!
The man at the computer closed everything down. He dropped the trash down the incinerator chute and then changed clothes. He put what he’d been wearing in a bag, and hung it on a hook in the back room, behind some boxes. He put his computer in the bottom of a shredder basket, and covered it with shredded paper. Then he grabbed a bottle of cheap whiskey and drank a sip and spilled some on his clothes. The last thing he did was set the security system. His cell phone would chirp if anyone came in. Locking the door, he stuffed the key into a slit in his shoe. Then he headed outside and down the street. When he got to the homeless shelter, he stood in line with the rest of the men waiting for supper.
“Hey Bubba, you got some juice on yah?” one of the drunks next to him asked.
“Nah, drank the last. Mebbe tomorrow.”
“Youse get some work today?”
“A little.” He shuffled forward with the rest.
“Hmmm, mebe I’s go wif dat man, get some work.”
‘Bubba’ nodded. Head down, he smiled as they moved into the shelter for dinner and the chance to sleep inside.
Patrick and Sandy shifted. Luc, David, and Andrew ‘walked’ the big dogs. They were quartering the area, with the homeless shelter at the center. David had brought a wash cloth he’d had Derek rub on his body to collect scent. Derek had admitted that he had been to the office at least once, but he couldn’t remember an address. Just that there was a stairwell, and a door painted with some sort of gang signs. They all sniffed the rag, and then David pocketed it.
After thirty minutes, they struck a waft of scent. The five of them jogged along following the trace. Ten minutes later, they were at the bottom of a long fire escape, and at the top there was a door with ‘west side hos!’ written in green spray paint. Luc and David walked up the stairs slowly. When they reached the door, Luc checked it for traps, wires or alarms.
“Luc, is that a wire?” David pointed to a think piece of plastic that seemed to go between the door and frame.
“I think so. No camera, but it might be on the inside. Biggest issue is the locked door.”
“Let me fix that.” David took a credit card out of his wallet and slipped it in next to the door handle. A quick wiggle and the door clicked. “After you.”
Luc opened the door carefully, and followed the wire. It led them to a small office at the back of the building. There was a desk, chair and a window facing the homeless shelter. Luc found where the wire met a camera and sensor. He pulled the wire, and watched the light go out. “Deactivated. Now we can search. Don’t know how long we have though.”
David walked back to the door and called the rest up. When everyone was in the room, they began to search. There was the faint scent of Derek, ashes, another man and cheap whiskey. He and Luc checked out the chute, and found that it was an incinerator.
“Well, that’s convenient for getting rid of things,” remarked David.
The wolves sniffed the furniture and then made a beeline for a pile of boxes in another room. One whined and pawed at a box. The other one thumped his head against a plastic shape.
Andrew walked over to the box where Patrick was scrabbling. An oddly familiar scent hit his nose, but he couldn’t place it. “I’ve found some clothes. Anyone recognize the scent?” The others came over, but no one connected anyone with it. Then they walked over to where Sandy had dumped an old industrial shredder. At the bottom there was a Panasonic Toughbook. Luc opened it up and had the password cracked in less than a minute. Lots of files on the family and the icon that brought up the cameras at the school.
“Damn. Now what?” asked David.
Luc looked around. “Trash the place. No peeing. We take the clothes and the computer. Then, just before we leave, I’m going to adjust that little alarm system.”
The men trashed the place. They dropped the clothes down the incinerator, and a small box or two as well. Luc gave Andrew the computer and then he reset the alarm system, minus the chirper.
“How does that change things?” Andrew asked.
“When we come back, we’ll be able to open the door without him hearing us,” explained Luc.
“And yes, I’ll be back tomorrow,” Luc growled. They left the door open and left.
As Bubba lay there in the dark, the phone alarm softly chirped a few times and then stopped. He looked around. No one had noticed the noise. He couldn’t leave either. The shelter had been locked for the night. No way in or out until morning. He sighed and realized that he’d have to wait to see what had happened.
“Youse gonna get a bottle t’day?”
“Mebe. I do, I’ll share.” Bubba shuffled out with the rest of the men and then ambled off in the direction of his office. Ten minutes later, he climbed the stairs to find the door open. “Shit.” he hissed under his breath. The office was trashed. There was a shoe and one sock left, but the rest of his clothes were gone, as was his computer. “Damn junkies.” He straightened his clothes the best he could, combed his hair and then headed out. There was a pawn shop two blocks away. That’s where he’d gotten the first laptop.
He was back, up and running in about an hour. Too late to watch the children come to school, but he still watched the halls. Around noon, the phone rang. “Yes? That will be fine. Thanks. I’ll have your money for you at the shelter. A drunk named Bubba will have it. No, he’s bought. Won’t take your money. Okay. Bye.” The man hung the phone up and went back to watching the computer screen.
Luc, Andrew and Patrick arrived in the alley just after 1pm. “I’ll go up first.”
“Luc, what are you going to do?” asked Patrick.
“Unless I miss my guess, we will have a body to move,” said Andrew.
“Patrick, this man threatens our families. Our lives. We know he’s not afraid to hire killers. He was going to take the children. What do you think I’m going to do?” asked Luc.
“Luc, this isn’t the old days, when Buster or Celia lived. Are you sure?” Patrick started.
“No, Luc is right Patrick,” said Andrew. “We can’t afford to let someone like this live. Even if we put him through the court system, we couldn’t keep him in jail. This kind of man would be put in a mental hospital for raving about werewolves and would be out in two years to do it all again. Or, he’d never go to jail. As much as I dislike the idea, I believe he needs to die.”
“How about we lock him up out at Dr. Jeff’s?” asked Patrick.
“Right. Like that isn’t cruel? This guy has a fear or hate of us. You want to stick him out with a bunch of shifters with issues? No, it would be far less cruel to just kill him now.” Luc sighed.
Patrick thought for a moment. “No, you’re right. This guy is some sort of psycho. Let’s get this over with.”
The three of them padded silently up the stairs. Andrew popped the door, and Luc was the first one in. He walked silently into the hall, just across from the room where the incinerator was. They could all smell the man. They could hear that he was talking on the phone. Luc motioned for Patrick to go right and Andrew to stay on his left. Luc shifted just enough to give himself more strength. He peered into the room. The man finished his phone call. He sat with his back to the door as he watched the computer. Luc could smell that it was the same man who left the clothes. He could see that the man was watching the school. Very specifically, the twins classroom. Just before Luc reached the man, he turned.
“You!” Luc cried as he saw who it was.
The man at the computer screamed and scrabbled away from Luc. He threw the laptop and Luc ducked. Then he picked up the chair and swung it at Luc. Luc kept advancing. Patrick came in from behind, and when he realized who it was, he moved closer. Luc stepped forward to try and grab him. It didn’t work. Patrick stepped in, and wrapped an arm around the man’s throat. His original intent was to incapacitate him. The man flailed, and kicked. Patrick applied more pressure, shoving the man’s neck over his arm and stretching him up and over.
Andrew walked into the room, saw who it was and growled. “Patrick, just do it. Or let me.”
Patrick sighed, and broke Eric Sunberry’s neck.
They stood there for a few minutes after Eric’s body stopped twitching. “What now?” asked Patrick. He’d been shocked to see who it was as were the others.
“We need to bury him,” said Andrew. “Somewhere that no one will find him. Not on family property.”
“We need a tarp. Something to wrap him in.” Luc strode off to look around the rest of the building. He was back in about five minutes with what looked like an old Persian carpet. “This will do.”
The men lifted the body and rolled up the carpet. They tied it with a chunk of rope. Luc dumped the computer and phone down the incinerator chute along with a few other bits and pieces. Then the three of them moved the bundle downstairs and into the back of Patrick’s truck. The three of them got in and drove off.
An hour later had them in a deserted field near an abandoned building. Patrick shoveled, while Luc had shifted and was digging fast. Andrew stood next to the truck, keeping a lookout. When the hole was deep enough, Luc leapt out and shifted back. “Let’s get this over with.”
They lifted the body and placed it in the bottom of the grave. The three of them filled it in and stamped down the dirt. They dragged some rocks, branches and boards from the house over the spot as well. Andrew stood there for a moment.
“What are you saying Andrew?”asked Patrick as he and Luc climbed into the truck
“Better luck next time round the wheel!” Andrew said. Then he walked back over to the truck and climbed in.