Tag Archives: #SundayScribblings

Moonrise CH35 – Hot Dog Heaven

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[1050 words – #3WW, Sunday Scribblings 2, #SoCS]Anne played her part masterfully. She pulled in contacts, set meetings, offered a cash reward. They would find Joaquin soon, she assured Silas and Globe. They just had to wait for word to roll through the dents and cracks filling the city. Information always presented itself for the right amount of green. It really was all about the Benjamins.

Silas sat at a picnic table with a quaint umbrella beside an aluminum carport and shoved his hot dog into his gaping maw. His dark eyes flickered along the line of patrons. The stainless steel stand was a regular fixture in front of the lumber yard on Sixth Street. Some people appreciated the wit of Pat, the proprietor. Magnets adhered to the metal sides of the trailer proclaiming, “We cheat the other guy and pass the savings on to you,” and “Best hot dogs in this parking lot.” There was even a plaster dachshund nestled in a hot dog bun with ketchup and mustard on top. Others came for the premium ingredients that Pat used or the friendly smile from a man who prided himself in offering a quick, tasty meal for less than a fiver. A few years ago, the city had even tried to make Pat pay a ridiculous fee on top of his business license by passing an ordinance. Their reasoning was that too many food carts and trucks were hurting the ambiance of the city. The outcry from Pat’s regulars and a local AM radio station just down the street put an end to that particular piece of legislation.

Anne watched Pat pull a bottle of mustard out of a cooler and draw two straight lines on her monster dog, followed by a zig-zag line of ketchup. He produced a pair of tongs and dished out onions, tomatoes, and neon green relish onto her monster dog.

“Celery salt, and pepper,” Pat asked, the hot dog resting in an aluminum foil embrace. A boom box played hard rock softly in the background.

Anne tilted her head and rolled her eyes at Pat. “Oh, Pat, you incorrigible tease, you know what I like.”

Pat grinned and dusted the spices on her hot dog before carefully folding the aluminum foil and placing the package neatly on the table in front of him.

Anne opened her coat and reached into her red clutch. She offered Pat a five-dollar note.

“Meal deal?” Pat asked.

Anne smiled and nodded.

Pat stepped around the corner, and the telltale sound of a cash register sounded over the boom box. He held up a pair of quarters, but Anne waved him off and lifted the door and rummaged around to find a can of soda. She examined a selection of chips and cookies behind a plastic sliding door, eventually selecting a bag of name-brand corn chips.

“How exactly do you know Joaquin?” Silas asked after Anne sat at the picnic table across from him.
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Moonrise CH34 – Literature Detective

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[1050 words – Inspiration Monday, #3WW, Write Anything, #SoCS, Sunday Scribblings 2, Sunday Photo Fiction]

The first thing Massey did was watch Anne’s hair flow in the brief wind, the color catching light from the street lamps and turning auburn. She was buzzing with anger. Globe had called. She smiled when she realized she messed up again. The Major wanted Joaquin found and brought to him. For what reason Anne didn’t elaborate, and Massey didn’t inquire. They had things under control. There was reassurance, a plan set to be executed. So they went their separate ways, each with their own role to play. The next thing Massey did was to spur into action without thinking, dodging traffic to reach Andy’s place, praying to whatever totem brought luck to cops that Anne had enough strategy to stall Globe’s lackey and slow down the search. Then they’d be good. Then they could start their attack against Globe’s rising power. He tried to call Andy’s phone a dozen times, but no one picked up. A feeling of dread settled in Massey’s gut. The windows on the street were all ablaze. They cast brilliant white stars on doors and windows overlooking the street. Flashing reds and blues confirmed his fears as he turned onto the street where Andy’s apartment was.

A fire truck was parked horizontally blocking the street. The hose wiggled on the asphalt like a python struggling in the heat of the still smoldering air. Once released the water rained like silver crystals against the black skyline full of smoke and desperation. The night-lights were gone, choked in the background of the death curtain. Massey stepped out of his cruiser, hand pressed against his mouth to cut out the smoke from entering his nostrils. By instinct, his dry mouth tried hungrily to inhale the ashes floating in the air. He recognized the apartment that was the sole attention of the crisis. The charred shape on the façade reminded him of a giant moth, a nuclear shadow imprinted on the side of the building. The notion made him dizzy, one monstrosity atop another. He elbowed through a small but growing crowd of odd-lookers. They stood around, mouths agape in their bedclothes, tightly hugging large frames and small frames in robes both tattered and luxurious. No one seemed to care how he or she looked or even who they were. They just wanted to see the dead and burned, the destruction that always followed the flames.

Outside of the crowd and into the danger zone Massey quickened his pace and ducked under yet another yellow police tape. His pace turned to a near jog to the ambulance and the body being loaded into it.

“Is he going to live?” Massey heard himself ask looking down at Andy’s bleeding face. He didn’t dare look around for a second body, his mind instantly questioning whether Joaquin was impervious enough to survive a fire, or an explosion, but then he recalled that duplex fire that was the source of him tracking the youth. He allowed himself a small sigh. If Joaquin hadn’t tried to carjack him, he would be one of the sheep bleating to the favor of Major Jacob Globe.

The paramedic pulled himself into the back of the ambulance grabbing for the doors. “He has sustained a few more serious injuries, but he’ll live. He was lucky your colleague pulled him out before he suffocated.” A gesture of the head made Massey swivel.

He stared at a middle-aged man standing by one of the police cruisers covered with a blanket to scatter away his shock. He measured how much bloodied and bruised his face was. The blanket slipped and uncovered his black jacket emblazoned with the yellow FBI letters. Massey breathed in deep ignoring the warmth in the air close to sweltering in the proximity, close to catching a swift drive down his throat. He had to get away before the agent saw him.
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Moonrise CH32 – Badass Orchestra

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[1125 words – Inspiration Monday, Sunday Scribblings 2]Joaquin drove without a direction just building speed, gaining a head start. But to where? Soon enough the black SUV was maneuvering between cars, wheels screeching on the asphalt, rushing to catch up with him. He couldn’t go back to Massey, he couldn’t give himself up. Andy was probably dead by now. The address for Jensen’s strange meeting was the only neutral place he could think off. He could dodge the cops on the way there. In seconds that seemed the only choice. He wanted to know how this mess connected to him; to Massey; to Jensen; to Anne; to Globe. Joaquin took a sharp right, and the SUV followed. It inched closer to him, and Joaquin could hear its hungry roar; see it looming like a black shadow behind him. Its headlights shone over the Civic, engulfing it. They had a spotlight on him, and they weren’t going to turn it off until he was handcuffed or dead.

Joaquin pushed the rattletrap Civic to its limit swerving around slower cars, ignoring their blaring horns. He took another sharp turn and left the boulevard to descend smaller streets; emptier streets outside the International District, leaving the bright lights for frail and sickly yellow ones that built the path to Jensen’s mysterious disappearance. They entered a roll of cars that screeched and propelled themselves with absurd speed up and down dirty streets. Every vehicle was a stranger; behind every window was a face that didn’t look, caught up in the sound of music and aggressive verse. Joaquin blended in with the slow traffic, but the SUV stood out. People blocked its path shouting with their horns. Agents ran a red light within an inch from an oncoming truck that stopped abruptly and blocked them. Joaquin took his chance and left the angry trail and bounced alone on the road to nowhere.

The road became uneven, with patches of asphalt overlapping one another, dark gray, light gray, charcoal rattling under the tires. From the manholes, white underground fumes turned the street misty and gray, and the windows of dark homes aligned identical left and right glistened with tiny droplets slipping down the glass. Joaquin sped past all that hitting every pothole and splashing gathered muddy water. He looked in his rearview mirror still looking for the SUV and when he found the street clear he let out a cheer. But just then the SUV erupted from a side alley and bumped into him sending the Civic slipping sideways, its bumper collecting trash cans, fences, and other obstacles. Joaquin recovered and found himself side by side with the SUV. The window rolled down, and the broken-nosed agent aimed his gun at Joaquin. The agent’s face contorted, his mouth blew blood and saliva as he yelled some order, but Joaquin didn’t care. He twisted the wheel and collided into the side of the SUV knocking the agent out of view.

The narrow street seemed to do the trick. The stunt gave Joaquin enough time to gain speed and rush ahead. The agents didn’t chance a showdown so near homes that had ears and eyes. They didn’t shoot at him, but that didn’t mean they were over and done with their hunt.

The SUV went up a gear and caught up on Joaquin with lightning speed. Its front bumper hit the Civic lurching Joaquin in his seat and his control into a short frenzy.

“Fuckin’ shit!” Another bump dislocated the Civic’s back bumper cover, and it rolled under the SUV in a heap of sparks.
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Moonrise CH29 – Forced Awake

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[1073 words – Prompts: Inspiration Monday, #3WW, Sunday Photo Fiction, Sunday Scribblings 2, Write Anything Wednesday, #SoCS]

Andy puffed on a cigarette. It was burning between his thin fingers, ash gathering at the tip threatening to tip over. He crushed it inside the ashtray.

“Well, what do you know?”

Joaquin looked up. The screen displayed six videos, and when Andy played the first, Joaquin quickly found Jensen among the crowd of people and saw how he slipped away into a dark alley pulling at his clothes and falling to his knees, his hands buried in his hair. Then there was a flash of something bright distorting the camera and when it regained focus a large spot on the ground and on the walls of the opposing buildings were covered in glistening pristine ice. The camera flipped sideways and after a few shaky seconds and curses from its owner it switched off.

“That was Jensen alright. Seemingly unable to contain and control his power. Let’s see video number two.”

The second video was much worse. Its quality was bad as it was filmed from under a table as far as Joaquin could see. The audio crackled and the picture was blurry when the phone moved in someone’s sweaty hands, but it was clear that the target of the video was Jensen. He was wearing the same outfit, pacing back and forth in a coffee shop, fuming at the end of the line. He exchanged a few loud and harsh words with an oafish man in front of him and then after a display on machismo, that man pushed him, he put his hands on the man’s chest and pushed back. The man fell to the ground, kicking and screaming, and Jensen ran away driving apart the growing crowd. Joaquin could see the white fumes swirling from the victim’s body and when he ripped his shirt open the thin crust of ice covering his chest.

“Whoa!” Joaquin sat back. “He froze that dude for no reason! Play the next one.”

But Andy wasn’t moving. He continued to stare at the screen. Slowly, he declared, “Something isn’t right.”

“Yeah, no shit. Jensen is guilty that’s for sure, homie.” Joaquin felt his fingers tighten into a fist. He remembered how he wanted to beat Jensen into a bloody pulp, serving justice the harsh way.

“No, something isn’t right with the videos. Look – they were all uploaded two days before the attack in Madison Park. It seems… too easy.”

Joaquin shrugged. “I don’t know man, I see what is before me, and that’s Jensen goin’ crazy on some dude’s ass. Ain’t that enough evidence to predict him capable of blasting those kids earlier?”

Andy played the other videos. They showed a progression in Jensen’s violent behavior and growth in his power. He wasn’t just freezing small areas; he was turning himself into ice, a single touch away from making everything freeze. One video even showed reflections in glass – clouds obscured the sun, and Jensen staggered past a blue-framed window, the cityscape pristine in the background. In others, he displayed violent fits and body alteration, limbs gaining misshapen extensions constructed from ice and “firing” ice spikes, the impact lodged them in solid concrete. It was inhuman. Joaquin was speechless, both impressed and terrified.
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Moonrise CH27 – Bizarre Mundanity

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[1000 words – Prompts: Inspiration Monday, #3WW, Sunday Scribblings 2, #SoCS, Write Anything]

* * *

Joaquin lingered in the threshold of Frank Massey’s apartment even after Betty’s silhouette faded into the distance of a bustling city street. Joaquin closed and locked the front door, tossed the envelopes in his backpack, left via the back door and made his way to the bus stop perched at the end of the long lane. He didn’t see the black SUV creeping up from anywhere, and he wondered whether it hadn’t been waiting on Betty. He didn’t know if his self-reassurance was far-fetched and lamented the fact that he just didn’t know what was going on. Before he had super powers, it was easy to know who he had to watch out for. Now, he just didn’t know.

It was getting dark, earlier than usual, a nasty trick of the month. Joaquin measured the sky, saw how it darkened inch by inch, a layer of blue melting away to add purples and reds and oranges until it went indigo. He caught the bus by the tail and loaded himself. As it pulled from its stop, Joaquin looked around, but he didn’t spot anyone acting suspicious or spending too much time with their eyes glued to him.

He sighed. He was overwhelmed, and every shadow or invisible threat spooked him. Joaquin thought that that was pretty stupid for a guy who couldn’t get hurt, but still… It was like the paranoia Massey and Betty carried had transferred onto him and was now crawling up his spine making him nervous. Even those glorious days in the Canadian wilderness with Peter seemed somehow less dangerous. Joaquin rested his head rest against the bus window, watching humanity stroll by on the sidewalks, gather in front of bars, and seat-dance in their cars.

The curved glass of the window distorted the night sky injecting fast growing city lights into the mix. Red streaks broke into his view, the color crashing into his peripheral vision. Joaquin blinked at his reflection, hollow eyes twinkling with that dreadful color. The intruding shade disappeared as the bus gained speed. Joaquin pulled his hood tighter over his head and disappeared into the anonymity he used to take for granted.

When the bus groaned to a halt ten stops later, Joaquin jumped out of its bleak interior dismissing anyone staring at him from the steamy windows. He kicked up his pace, hands in pockets, eyes set firmly in one direction. The city lights were full in their illumination of the night now, neon greens, yellows, blues and pinks erupting from every commercial corner, selling booze, selling smokes, dealing drugs, dealing porn. They gave away some sort of warmth and comfort, and Joaquin felt more at home as he rushed down the curb, dodging people, avoiding eyes. His ears picked out music, but it died out in the cacophony of a city gearing up for the nightlife and was too scant to be identified or remembered. The halting thump-thump of dance music blared out of a few open doors. Blues, country, and rock also competed for his attention. He could make out brief snippets of conversation. They were small words from smirking mouths. He relished the slang and accents constructing one giant jibber-jabber in front of food carts. He smelled the curbside popcorn, gamy kebabs, hot dogs and ice cream right by weed smokers exchanging signs and currency. Hard drinkers crushed brown paper bags between calloused fingers. They watched him with watery eyes from hollow sandpaper faces. He knew them all, their nature, their tricks. He felt like he could breathe again alone and assured in the bizarre mundanity of the Seattle urban sprawl.
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Moonrise CH26 – Error

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[1010 words – Inspiration Monday, #3WW, Sunday Scribblings 2, The Writing Reader, #SoCS]A harsh red light in the laboratory blinded him when stepped through the doors as he rushed past lab assistants, engineers, and other personnel. Major Globe was on the precipice of a dire failure he feared could happen yet hoped he would be able to avoid. He closed his eyes and tried to calm his frayed nerves, but the erratic throbbing building in his temples only increased. The flicker of the alert light turned his skin hotter than it already was and he ground his teeth feeling the pressure of tooth on tooth scratch at his skull.

“Will someone turn that off?” he demanded to no one in particular.

The clinical calm typically present in the lab returned. Globe’s workers tried to compose themselves. The low-frequency sound disappeared with a soft buzz. Globe opened his eyes blinking at the blue-white light that returned to calm his heated head.

Globe glared at the transparent tube where Peter motionlessly floated. What normally illuminated the super within was now eerily dark. The data on the screen in front of him flashed, “alert,” “system down,” and “reboot unavailable.” It had been working like a clock, timed and measured to tick in a precise rhythm that promised to deliver outstanding results within weeks. Now it had suffered a step back and not a small one. He tried to calculate the new timetable. His gaze was unfocused, and he looked nowhere, in particular, lost in thought while his fingers clenched into fists. He needed time to understand whether the experiment had suffered a recoverable overdose on the cocktail of drugs designed to keep Peter alive. Perhaps the substance had been muddied, weakened, even. He needed to know if this project was completely lost or just halted.

His stare wandered to a matching tank and his brows furrowed. He knew it had come from Kristoff, the computer said as much. It was just a light stir, a brief, but weak spark. The vital signs of his reluctant hero were the source of the power surge that had transferred to Peter’s chamber and short-circuited it. They had nearly lost Peter, and now his vitals were so low it was impossible to continue the experiment. Worst than that, his power had been depleted. Globe shifted his attention to the third pod in the room. He threatened Anne into compliance so many times with it. Could it be used to fix Peter’s malfunctioning pod?

One of the lab assistants babbled at him reiterating things that Globe already knew. The assistant tried to explain how the team was taking a manual sample to test. How from the moment the accident had happened the test results had begun to decrease in purity, efficiency and strength. How they had had to temporarily disconnect Kristoff from the equation for fear his DNA structure would dominate and destroy the results. Globe’s fist came down on the table scaring the lab assistant and he pounded it until the skin on his knuckles broke and they started to bleed. He smacked the monitor and grabbed a handful of cables and pulled at them ripping them apart from whatever sockets they were attached to. He hurled the bundle of cables on the floor in a heap. In his fury, he flipped the table and kicked a rolling chair making the assistant cower and hug the tablet he held with a death grip. Everyone else present stopped and stared. Some had the sense to hide it, but not all of them.
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Moonrise CH25 – Fragile Destiny

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[1030 words | Prompts: Inspiration Monday, #3WW, The Writing Reader, Sunday Scribblings 2, #SoCS]”Who are you?”

Joaquin blinked at the woman’s squinting eyes and the stern expression on her face. She shifted her hands behind her back to hide something. Joaquin allowed a wide grin and took a step back from the door. “Frank told me to wait for someone.” He paused and allowed his eyes to roam over the petite woman from head to toe. “How do I know you’re the one I’m waiting for?”

The woman sighed and brought whatever she was hiding behind her back in plain sight. “Let me guess,” she declared, an amused rise in the corner of her lips, “Frank had to step out, so you got stuck waiting for this.” She waved a thick envelope at Joaquin, and let it thump soundly on a table adorning the entryway.

“So,” she continued after glancing at Joaquin, “who’re you with? CIA, FBI, NSA, DHS? Detective Frank Massey has lots of friends in a variety of federal offices.” Her eyes focused on his right eyebrow. “He also has contacts in other organizations.” She winked. “Street organizations…”

Joaquin’s smile fell. The blonde woman nodded as if he had confirmed her suspicions. “Well, uh, I…” he stammered.

She held up a hand, palm toward Joaquin. “Save it; I don’t want to know.”

Joaquin looked over his shoulder and back to the woman. “What’s your name?” he queried.

She smiled. “Just let Frank know that all the information and ancillary content he wanted is in the package.” She gestured toward the envelope balanced precariously on the edge of the table.

“Okay, uh, Betty, er, I mean, Officer Patterson.”

She smirked and turned to exit the foyer back to the street. Her pleasant smile faded when she saw a black Ford Explorer with dark tinted windows parallel parked across the street. Joaquin followed her gaze, and he noticed the slight distortion coming from the tailpipe. Whoever it was, they left the motor running. The vehicle suddenly pulled into the street and sped away. Betty and Joaquin watched it disappear over the slight rise of the pavement, noting the government license plate.

Betty tightened her jacket and turned back into Frank’s apartment. She met Joaquin’s eyes with a cold determination that made him swallow audibly. “Tell Frank that I don’t know what he’s into, but he needs to watch his back.” She reached over and pushed the envelope further on the table. “He needs to keep me out of whatever’s going on. I want no part of an operation that has spooks watching what’s going on.”

She turned and stepped across the threshold. She looked left and then right, before another glance over her shoulder at Joaquin. She descended the stairs and headed down the sidewalk opposite from the direction the black SUV went. She looked as if she hadn’t a care in the world, but Joaquin knew better.

He was certain that his destiny and Frank’s were intertwined and so very fragile. One mistake could end them both, possibly even the world.
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Moonrise CH24 – New Friends

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[1034 words – Inspiration Monday, #3WW, Sunday Scribblings 2, The Writing Reader, #SOCS]“By our way, you mean the supers way? Fighting with goddamn superpowers! Do you understand how much damage that will cause to this city, to its people? Do you even care?”

Anne rose purposefully from her chair and pointed a finger at him. She moved with such unhinged ferocity that Massey flinched from an invisible blow. “That’s how war has always been fought. Don’t you presume to sit down and teach me the history of war! I’ve lived through them all. I know the stakes, I know the price!”

He focused on Anne’s hips as she rounded the counter, her long legs carrying her aimlessly through the constricted space. Massey didn’t know much about her; just skin crawling tidbits and what they shared in their forbidding encounters. The woman before him was a complete stranger, with tendencies of fiery passion. The way she stood with her frame dipped in shadow and only partial bleak light she looked every bit the many-faced goddess of rebirth. Massey slumped back, defeated by her presence and wondered with a faint stupid smile on his lips whether somewhere in time someone had worshiped her as a goddess. He wasn’t even referring to symbolism. She’d been someone’s mother, wife, and sister. He wondered what a palmist would make of her lifeline… if he believed in that sort of thing. She was a warrior and even though that aspect of her character had been asleep for thousands of years, it was awake now. The idea of an immortal watching human history and playing her role gave him notion sickness. Massey spoke softly knowing he had nothing to shield from her. “I understand what you’re saying. I can’t walk in your shoes, and I don’t claim to know many of the things that are happening now. But want is a damaging war. You reminisce of a different age with different rules. You can’t just burn the entire city to flush out one rat and his tails. People’ll get hurt, innocent people and I can’t allow that.”

Anne glared at Massey, a hot flame dancing in her eyes. “I know how this world works, Frank. I’ve fought for it many times. I will fight again. War is war, and it is bloody no matter what. I called you here because I need friends. I can’t do this alone. If we are smart about it, no innocents will be hurt.”

Massey nodded his head in agreement.

Anne continued, “Globe is planning something massive. It’s already in motion. He has a small team of supers working under his influence. He’s tracking down more supers, bringing them in and using them for some sort of experiment. They never leave his laboratory.”

Massey, deep in thought, stared at Anne. “His laboratory… Does he keep you privy to all that?”

Anne shook her head. “Only as much as he needs to.” She sighed. “Frank, he has Kristof and Peter strapped down in that lab. Whatever he’s doing it’s connected to them both.”

“What would your guess be?”

“If he wipes out all of the supers he’s clear of any danger from them if they try rising against him. But it’s more than that. I think Globe wants to install a new world order. His supers, his genetics. New powers mean new dangers. He’ll rule over us all.”
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Moonrise CH23 – Reunion

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[1127 words – Prompts: Inspiration Monday, #3WW, Sunday Photo Fiction, Sunday Scribblings 2, The Writing Reader]Massey threw his phone on the passenger seat. His cruiser growled when he changed lanes and direction. He triggered his lights and the siren cleared a path for him.

Meet me at 483 Eastlake Ave East in 30 minutes.

This is too easy, he thought. It hadn’t been twenty-four hours since Anne called him and offered a truce. Even then she hadn’t been certain of when or how. She was always cautious. Then, overnight, the Madison Massacre happened. Anne was silent about it, but now she voiced urgency through an untraceable number. She wanted a quick meeting, no questions asked. Massey could tell that something significant had happened; something had stirred loud and scary enough to drive Anne to this meeting. That something was prone to be bad.

By the time Massey pulled over at the given address, it was nearing dusk. Old bones groaning, he sat on the tight seat of the black cruiser. The sky was an angry purple, a raw bruise spreading over the city. Massey put a calloused hand over his heart. This madness would be the death of him. He thought about Denisha. His baby girl was always busy these days; catching her voice on the phone had become as much a rarity as seeing her. To protect Joaquin, Frank had made personal sacrifices. He hoped they wouldn’t blow back on him.

The I-5 express running above rattled with the dull rhythm of rasping car engines speeding by as Massey crossed the street. His eyes frantically scanned for Anne, but the street was empty. Gray buildings erected shoulder to shoulder glared with empty windows – rental and available signs decorated their corners. The dust and smudges on the glass told him they were long forgotten just like the other half the avenue’s length – tarnished and halted by renovations. The posters glued crooked to the lampposts were dated last March. The neighborhood reeked with ostentatious poverty. To Frank’s surprise huddled between a shutdown bar, Bud Light sticker still crowning its entrance and a garage, its heavy black door closed for the day, was a second-hand clothes store, pale mannequins stared at him armless and headless through the frame. A bird feeder hung from a cast iron pole. Massey drummed his fingers on his holster as he approached the door. He clicked the gun free from the leather strap and wrapped his hand around the grip, but keeping it out of view.

“Are you going to shoot the mannequins?”

He spun toward the voice, and had his weapon out.

Anne took stock of it. “You need to reload, cowboy.”

When Massey lowered his weapon, she moved around him, took out a keychain and after selecting the right on, she stuck it in the keyhole. The chain fell away with a rattle against the doorframe. Anne picked up the dangling chain and pulled until it was free and the door swung wide open. The small space was crowded with chairs and sheet covered salon chairs. An unattached sink was placed on the tiled floor, and beside it, a large mirror stood propped reflecting whatever radiance touched its surface.

“Do you own this place?” Massey asked stepping over mannequin hands as he followed Anne inside. “And what’s with the plastic?” he nodded toward the sprawled mannequins.
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Moonrise CH20 – Insignificant Other

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[1078 words – Inspiration Monday, #3WW, Sunday Scribblings 2]It took longer than was needed for Doctor Globe’s motorcade to reach its destination. Globe sighed more than once as his driver stopped to allow the ambulances to catch up to the limousine. Onlookers were kept at bay from the compound with the double fence and razor wire, but each gap between vehicles allowed the crowd to flow back across the gate. Globe’s men corralled the people away from the road and allowed the ambulances to follow.

Once inside the lab, Globe again had to wait. The bodies had to be prepped before entering the impromptu “morgue” his team built a few days before securing the “bodies.” Despite the sterile whiteness of the small tent hidden in the basement space next to his lab, the Madison Park Massacre victims emanated a pale blue light that seemed to shine brighter against the stark material surrounding them. Everywhere the blue light touched, coldness permeated. The tent swam in it. Globe shivered when he entered, but he regarded the quaking as a pleasant feeling, and not the icy fingers that many of his underlings referred to it as. They didn’t know that the frigidity meant that Silas and Bree’s powers had done their magic.

A short man in a lab coat and a thin mustache approached Globe. Other than the facial hair from a bygone era, there was nothing special about the little man. He extended his hand, and Globe reluctantly shook it.

“Doctor Lee,” Globe intoned, keeping up appearances.

“Doctor Globe.”

Globe rubbed his fingers together after Lee released them. He used the same hand to wave at the rows of white cots arranged in rows. “How are our patients?”

“Stable. All their vitals are in the green. There are no indications of them waking up anytime soon. We’ll be carefully monitoring the-” Lee struggled for the right word, “-coma, but if any need appears to reassure the effect…”

“I’ll take care of that.” Globe turned his attention away from the tiny bodies on the cots and scrutinized Doctor Lee. “Your job, Doctor, is to make sure these people remain asleep.”

Doctor Lee shrunk from Globe’s jarring gaze but rallied and then cleared his throat. “I have to wonder Doctor Globe, how long before the relatives and parents begin asking questions. They will want the bodies back to bury, and we surely can’t release the subjects, nor deny them.”

Globe crossed his arms over his chest. “I can postpone as many times as I please. I have promised results, but never said anything about my timetable. As long as these subjects here are believed to be deceased, then there is no immediate hurry. The children are to be tested regularly. I’m curious to see how Bree’s power affects them after prolonged exposure. Make sure we understand how to harness her power in an efficient manner.” Globe moved toward Lee, towering over him. “I don’t want any mistakes, Doctor.

The honorific didn’t hold the respect that was usually reserved for bearers of the title, but if Lee took offense, he had the sense to conceal it. The shorter man nodded, and replied, “The samples will be small at first. The small sample size will lead to insufficient data to be collected, but…”
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