|Silver and Gold
Author: EYEStoLIE PM
A decade ago, Anne Kerrick went missing from the city of Lakewald. The only clue the Silvers, the police, ever could find was the Kerrick locket, which vanished alongside her. Now, on the tenth anniversary of her disappearance, a young woman calling herself Kerrick is caught trying to pawn the locket. Clearly she holds pieces to the puzzle... now it's up to the Silvers to get them.Rated: Fiction T - English - Mystery/Fantasy - Chapters: 3 - Words: 4,390 - Reviews: 2 - Updated: 01-29-13 - Published: 12-22-12 - id: 3085338
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
She stood in the pawnshop, offering up the locket—twisted and tarnished antique gold, the sort sold for cheap and bought for vanity. Louis James Herokal waited behind the counter, pretending to be rummaging around his shelves for the right paper—wondering if she could see the waterfall of sweat raining down his bent spine, or if her eyes were too far gone by now. If the dilated pupils and the perpetually dreamlike look on her face was anything to go by, she just might be.
The girl had completely missed his look of horror, after all. Who knew what else might slip by that vacant gaze?
"Think you could take much longer, old man?" The dream was gone from her voice now, replaced with something that sounded a bit too testy for his liking. He glanced back at her, seeing in her gaze what he'd heard in her voice; I don't have to wait for you. Plenty of other places looking for gold.
"Just another moment, I promise." He offered what he hoped was a reassuring smile before returning to pretending to rummage through his cabinets. The document in question was right in front of him, as it had been for the past ten minutes, unmoving—except to be occasionally ruffled for effect.
With great regret, he plucked it from its company and pasted the smile back on his face, turning around and setting it down on the counter between them.
"Pen?" She demanded shortly and he leaned forward, feigning confusion as he gestured to his ear. "Do. You. Have. A. Pen?" There was a tone of condescension that was clearly audible now. She was definitely on Raptures and falling from heavenly heights, back down to bitter reality. And she was looking for her ladder to the sky once more.
Louis—or LJ to his friends, who were as old as he was and very willing to ignore the ill-fitting nickname—nodded with that same smile, picking up a pen that he knew very well to be out of ink. "It's a lovely piece. How did you come by it?"
"A friend." She answered shortly and he knew it to be a lie. It took only a glance at the clearly expensive locket to tell him that much; it took only a glance to make out the curling letter, hidden beneath layers of grime and ornate engravings.
Louis had seen this locket and those letters many times throughout his long years. The Silvers had shown up in that very same spot repeatedly, bearing photographs of that same necklace—that same pendant, those same engravings, that same elegant letter—and always asking the same questions. Have you seen this? Has anyone tried to sell you this? Can we see your records? Do we need a warrant?
First they had come with a fervent desire—for answers, for the right answers, for success. To find the girl—and he had watched, with aging eyes, as their enthusiasm and their optimism and their beliefs had failed them, time and time again as he shook his head.
And now, after nearly ten years, this.
"This pen doesn't work." The young woman grumbled, throwing it back on the counter. Louis murmured his apologies and offered another, just as broken as the first, eyes glued to the window behind her head.
She looked up from the counter to announce this new pen's failure as well when she caught his stare—and followed, just as Isaac walked into view.
In his mid-thirties, Isaac Cathaway looked just right to be a member of the Silvers. He carried the weight of someone important, his eyes held a somewhat of a sleepy quality—a practiced ease with which he faced liars and honest men alike—and his pale brown hair was tied back tight, suppressing the unruly curls. His skin was the color of a dusty rural road, conflicting with the city-like sharpness of his suit.
His eyes were not sleepy today, but cold.
The woman saw him approaching and did what she would later admit to not have been the most practical course of action. She picked up the heaviest object she could find—a metal bat he, upon later thought, admitted he should not have left lying around beyond the counter—and, with the firm grip of someone very familiar with the weapon, slammed it against the glass wall separating Louis and herself.
Glass rained down in a deadly cascade and he ducked beneath the counter, not even daring to look up when he heard the second smashing of glass.
She had thrown the bat at the display window, sending it crashing through heading straight for Isaac.
He turned away out of reflex.
Neither men saw her swallow the locket.
What she did next, however, confused them both.
She stood there and waited.
Isaac drew his weapon—a golden revolver with no bullets in the chamber—and pointed it at her. "Hands in the air!"
Obligingly, she raised them and he moved in slowly. "Turn around!"
Isaac kept his gun up until he yanked her arms down, encasing them in heavy iron manacles. He shoved his weapon back into its holster and spun her around roughly by the shoulders. "Where is Anne Kerrick?" She was condescending again, a smirk on her face, even as he shook her. "Where is the locket?"
She didn't answer and Louis refused to feel even a shred of admiration for her unruffled attitude; he knew most of it was narcotic to begin with.
The tips of his brown fingers—rough and strong from years of toiling away in the farms outside the city—dug into her shoulders, but his voice came back down to a measured calm. "What's your name?"
And it was here that the woman smiled—but it was not a kind smile. It was something flatter and far more frozen. "Call me Kerrick."
Isaac said nothing else as he dragged her from the ruined pawnshop, leaving Louis behind—shaking slightly in the sea of glass at his feet.