I smirked. Liam frowned. He stepped towards the door but at the same time his tele-wire began to beep. He glared at his pocket and the pulled out his wire.
"You go handle that," he growled, linking the speaker piece to his ear and pulling the other end towards his mouth.
"Oh sure. I'll HANDLE her." I stuck my tongue between my teeth, still relishing in the thought that I had won an argument with Liam.
He smacked me upside the head and pointed angrily at the door. I smoothed down my hair, shrugged and my way to the kitchen where Kayli, and I could guess Garth, were arguing. I avoided the puddle of water and the shards of glass soaking in it, and rested a firm hand on Garth's tense shoulder.
"What's he done now, Red," I grinned casually, squeezing Garth's muscle to warn him not to get worked up.
Kayli scowled ferociously. "He was crowding up the doorway and when I tried to walk past, he knocked the glass out of my hands!"
Garth snorted. "This scrawny kid tried to hip-and-shoulder me as I walked in to get a beer. Dropped the glass when she got unbalanced. Not my fault she's a klutz."
The funny thing was that neither of them was lying, or both believed they were telling the truth. I was about to unleash an inspiring lecture when Liam stormed in, his mind so focused on something else that he missed the glass and it crunched under his shoes.
"Kayli, I'm going to have to leave you here for a while. Luke, you're gonna want to come with me."
It felt like my stomach had turned into a rock. "A murder?"
"Get in the car." He didn't answer the question.
I strode after him, wondering who had been taken this time. This was a nightmare. A horrifying, grave, depressing dark dream. There was no way of preparing myself for another kill, no way of forgetting those who had been sucked dry of their life's fluid.
I scooted into the passenger seat and immediately Liam was shooting out the driveway, manually navigating around the narrow roads before shoving down the accelerator pedal, hitting high speeds. He tapped a button on the dashboard and a siren began to sound. Across the M-Screen appeared what looked like a radar, showing what cars were surrounding this vehicle. I knew from experience that the sirens were sending a signal to car computers so that they slowed and moved to the slow lane.
Liam skidded around corners and cars like a professional driver, a talent I was envious of. I had only begun manually driving last year and still wasn't totally confident with my handling.
"There are three," he said suddenly, after ten minutes of silently driving.
"Three? Three bodies?" Who were they? Did I know them? Did they have families?
"Two men... and a... and a fourteen year old girl." Liam was pale and I knew what he was thinking. His brother was a witch, and also fourteen years of age. This kill could have been someone close. I'd already lost someone who had been a part of my daily life. My old second and my dad's best friend, Rooney.
Not only that but to murder a girl so young... these blood witches were sick.
He skidded around one last corner and then slammed the brakes, making me have to brace on the dashboard rather than shoot headfirst out the window. I studied the street and pinpointed the house where there were two uniformed Gardaí; one talking into a wire while the other was writing on a digital notepad. The house was small, cottage-sized, which was unusual compared to the surrounding manors. I'd been on this street before, recognising it as a Winged territory. Bernard, the stern Eagle shape-changer, leader of the Winged, lived only a few blocks away. He would've heard about his and come to see it himself, or sent someone from his council. I stepped out the car and followed Liam to the house.
He signalled me to stop outside the house and turned to the gardaí. "Give this guy all the information you've gathered from the crime scene."
"I'm coming in with you," I argued. What was the point of bringing me along if I had to stay outside like a weak-stomached kid?
He glanced at me, his expression giving nothing away. "This is a crime-scene, Luke, my crime scene. I can't allow civilians inside."
He walked hurriedly inside and I stared after him, fuming silently.
"Excuse me, sir? Luke, is it?"
I looked over to the middle-aged garda. He was looking grim.
"Did you know these people?"
I shook my head. "Not directly, no. I've probably seen them before, or heard of them."
He frowned in confusion. "Is there a reason why the lieutenant requires you to be informed then?"
I scowled. "Yes, because I want to be informed. Is that good enough for you?"
"Kid, it's not usual for us to have to go over things for a civilian. Look, even if I don't personally agree with it, we'll have to go through it with you anyway. We have to follow orders."
I folded my arms and waited.
"Do you want to see the photos?"
No, I thought. The photos of the men would just bring back memories of seeing Rooney's motley face and unseeing eyes. The image of a lifeless girl would be even more difficult to view. But I couldn't cut corners, even if I really wanted to.
"Yeah, show me."