Chapter 27

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Chapter 27

Whitney sat at the picnic table facing the playground. It was a huge play area although you couldn't see much of it in the dark. It was kind of creepy at night. It was all bars and sharp edges. She glanced at the time on her phone again. It was almost ten after eleven already. She had been sitting here for ages and it was starting to get cold. The park was supposed to be closed at eleven and she really didn't relish the idea of getting caught here by the police. 

Whitney glanced out across the Duck Lake. It glowed orange from the street lamps. She wondered where Philtzer's wolves were hiding. It was a still night not even the lightest breeze was blowing. She couldn't hear anything beyond the normal traffic noises but even those were muffled by the trees. Whitney shivered. She never knew that quiet could be so scary.

Madraeus shifted slightly. He was sitting in a tree not more than thirty feet from Whitney. Silently he dropped from the tree. Still nothing had moved around them. Madraeus sighed and walked toward Whitney. She jumped up when he emerged from the darkness.

"What are you doing?" she asked with her heart in her throat.

"He's not coming. It's time to go." 

"Damn, I was so sure he would come," Whitney sighed.

"It doesn't matter, come on," Madraeus guided Whitney down one of the paths. 

"Thank you for trying anyway," she muttered dejectedly. 

"You didn't give me much choice," he shrugged. Shadows poured out of the trees as they walked.  Whitney edged closer to Madraeus unconsciously. Within moments they were surrounded by Philtzer's pack. They had failed to tempt Justin out in the open. Disappointment was thick in the air. The pack escorted them to the edge of the park and then faded away again. 

"Where are they going?" Whitney asked feeling a moment of panic. 

"Back to join Rami," Madraeus said quietly. He looked around still on his guard. "They are going to make a sweep of the park. They might still get lucky tonight."

"Oh," Whitney didn't know about that part of the plan.

Madraeus walked silently beside Whitney. She was too disappointed to talk. It took no time at all to cover the few blocks from the park to InfiniCorp. Then they were standing in the elevator.

Whitney stopped outside of her apartment door. She turned and looked at Madraeus. He was staring at her intently. His eyes were dark. The situation felt so much like the end of date that she wondered at her own sanity. Although sitting in a park waiting for a homicidal ex-boyfriend while being watched by vampires and werewolves was hardly what she would call a date. Besides she was sure he only felt contempt for her anyway. He had made that quite clear earlier in his apartment, but just the same she felt that awkward, electric should I kiss him at the end of the night feeling.  

"Well," she started, "Goodnight, I guess. Thanks again for trying." Whitney opened the door. Before he could answer something grabbed her and pulled her inside the room. The door slammed shut. Whitney stumbled. Whatever grabbed her had let go the instant she was in the room. 

"Whitney!" Madraeus called then something slammed into the door making her jump. 

Whitney blinked trying to adjust her eyes to the darkness. The faint light glowing from the electronic devices wasn't enough to help her. Her other senses zinged into overdrive trying to sense where her attacker was.  There was a faint movement to her right. She started backing slowly away. She knew her apartment better than any intruder would especially in the dark. If she could make it to the kitchen she could get out. 

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