Of Mangled Bodies and A Mysterious Mansion
Copyright © 2011: JaZmin3. All Rights Reserved.
Prologue: Temporary Normality
Flash. "Are there any words you would like to say in response to the high praise given to you and your colleagues by the state officials?" Click. Click.
"Did this case, in any way, resemble the 'Miller-The-Killer' case from last year?”
“Is it true that you'll be recruiting a new member in December?”
"There's been rumors circulating about a supposed-scandal that you'll be working on nearing the end of this month, care to confirm this claim?"
Masses of paparazzi swarmed around us as I lead the group through bustling crowds. The blood staining my clothes indicated how violent our latest case had been. All I could smell was the greasy smell of blood that had been splattered moments earlier. Of course it wasn't my blood, but the blood of a criminal brought to justice.
I sighed. I'd been hoping to avoid the public after this anti-climactic ending.
Before I could answer, or stop squinting at my captors, I was pushed softly into the growing cluster of people.
“Don't let them manipulate you,” a voice I had long since grown accustomed to, whispered against the back of my head as a hand hovered at the small of my back.
I was gently lead through the throng of reporters and newspaper representatives.
“Excuse us, pardon me, please, just move,” his voice had hardened, slightly. Obviously, I could hear the subtle change.
After being lifted conspicuously into our awaiting get-a-way van, I curled up into a ball. Bending pale legs and wrapping my arms around my petite body, I didn't think I would be bothered (much less, noticed) by my approaching allies. My body was just begging for a break; not from the exhaustion, but from the stress.
Unfortunately for me, Kale just had to intervene in my plans.
“Syrena,” it wasn't easy to ignore his soft calling. “We're not home yet, could you please keep yourself conscious?”
Knowing I couldn't deny him much longer, I sighed and lifted my head. Though I knew Kale wouldn't want me to leave his side, I had to be responsible, if not for our team members, at least for myself.
What a peculiar predicament. See what he was able to do to me?
But I couldn't focus on him right now. I had much more rewarding thoughts to think about.
Nodding my head out of the clouds, I turned my attention out the window and searched for familiar faces. I had become so immersed in finding them, that I didn't make any move to follow when Kale's presence had disappeared.
Melody, the only one out of the six of us not bloodied, stood with the back of her Prada cargo pants staring me in the face, a mob of journalists listening like hawks to every word coming out of her lip-gloss slathered mouth. Her older brother, a closet philosopher, had strung up a conversation with an experienced news anchor. Tristan must have been completely absorbed into his own words, because he didn't seem to notice the cameraman hiding behind the woman's shoulder.
Both stood, yards apart, near the slide-open library doors now crowded by policemen.
It seemed like neither felt the need to flee. So, I chose not to approach them.