Chapter Two: Run Away

Grease popped from the sauté pan as Tanaka worked on his scrambled eggs. It didn't take long for the eggs to cook so he removed them from the heat to allow them to cool. He tossed a starch white towel over his shoulder while pushing his cordless phone up closer to his ear. He seemed to be listening to a thick stream of insults that were more than discourteous. Two lightly colored toasts popped up from his toaster and he hurled them onto a plate.

"Chief what was I supposed to do? If I would have taken her home and left her there, there would have been a chance of Cecilia confronting her alone. We all know that soon the seal on her powers will be unbound. Bringing her home at least I know I have some potential to defend her."

"You should have brought her to the compound you genius! Cecilia would never have come here. What about Cecilia's probation officer, did you get in contact with him?"

"When I called Hank he kept saying the beautiful Cecilia isn't in and that he missed her so much. It was enough to make me sick! I told those guys they should have put that bitch down. But I guessed since I was attacked by her that makes me biased."

"I see. I'll have Sasha check on that probation officer and see if he can't hunt out any leads on Cecilia's whereabouts and what's she up to. As for the girl Aubrey, I want her and you at my house by Two-Thirty. Do us both a favor, ease her into our existence. I don't want any mental cases."

"Chief, I have a question for you."

"That is Tanaka?"

"What about the girl's parents. If Cecilia is really rolling as deep as we think she is, she might target the human's family."

"And risk more of mankind knowing of us, no. For now they are just going to have to stay put. Once we extract information on your case we'll look into some people to keep an eye on them, alright? You just focus on breaking the ice to the girl."

"We don't have time for all that; Cecilia is smart she won't allow us a break. More people will die if we aren't brisk about this. I'm begging you to send some protection to them—"

A dial tone echoed through his ear and he quickly hung up his phone. Since the beginning of time it has always been banned for humans to know for certain the reality of the other worldly creatures; his sort being the most controversial, the most invigorating. From now on he would have to be twice as careful and thrice the steps ahead of his foes. Yet the gentleman could not falter from the sensation of being trapped inside a haunting labyrinth leading him down a path he did not want to revisit.

XxX

Rusting chains shook as pigeons took flight to the warehouse rafters. Light glimmered over the ripples of the drenched cement floor. Clacks from a woman's knee high boots caused the anticipation to rise in the building. Sitting in a chair placed at the heart of the room was a middle aged man; his body covered with bloody lines and limbs restrained. His dirty locks fell down to his hairy chest. Terror stretched his timeless blue eyes open as the woman stuck her knee into his crotch and pulled his hair back.

"Good morning, darling."

"Go to hell you demon!" He snarled, before spitting in her face. Blood raced through his veins as Cecilia's eyes lingered on his mouth. "You've used me enough, now let me go!"

"Ha, you think I am going to let you go. No you are too useful to me as my faithful probationer." She said, before re-examining his face. "Or perhaps you aren't worth the trouble; there are plenty of other humans to take your place. Yes, I need someone that will be more willing to work with me, and won't nose around so much."

"Tanaka doesn't want you all he wants is to leave his life of sin behind."

"Humans you think you know everything and know nothing at all. This system that you fools have established is not the one we live by in our world. It is idyllic nothing more. In time he will realize he is simply delusional…in time he will realize what exactly he left behind."

"Yah, he left a crazy bitch."

"I am not crazy!" Cecilia screamed as she pulled a knife on him. Effortlessly she punctured it through his racing heart. Thin ruby blood slipped down his chest. Whining softly the beast rolled down the man's body. "He and I were meant to be Hank! That thing with Vile…it was nothing I-I just couldn't control myself around such a powerful creature. Besides Vile is dead now and I can see the error of my ways…me and Tanaka can work things out. Don't you agree Hank? Damn I should have asked before you died huh?"

She looked up at the lifeless man's furious eyes and heaved aggravated. Fingers tapped her shoulder and she nearly jumped out of her skin.

"Sup, boss—"

"Damn it, Jason! I told you to announce yourself before you come in. Hank and I were having an important heart to heart."

The being scoffed, "I see. He was so touched he started to bleed. That's true dedication boss."

"Yes I know. Anyways darling, have you delivered my little present to the married couple?"

"No ma'am…you sent Arctic to do that, remember? In fact he is on his way to do that now. I came here to bring you intelligence on that girl, Aubrey." He said handing a folder to the woman.

"Oh good, Jay…I'll have to give you lots of spankings." Cecilia cheered, as she grabbed the file.

"Please don't." He spoke monotonously.

XxX

In no way had Aubrey slept so peacefully before yet dreamt so distressingly. Throughout the hot summer night she sensed her crush near her, on her. In her mind he presided as a brave knight fending off the many dark clouds invading the complexity of her unconscious psyche. To herself she found it odd, how such troubling and brutal dreams made her never wish to wake up. Loud jingles and vibrations from her pants pocket aroused her from sleep. Parched, incoherent words struggled their way from her voice box as she answered the phone. When she heard the person on the other line speak, she shot up.

"Dad, oh my god I forgot about you!"

"What the hell do you mean you forgot about me! Where the hell are you? You're mother and I am worried sick about you. I called the police and they told me I had to wait a whole twenty-four hours before I could file a missing persons report."

"Dad I am fine, I am with my friend."

"What friend? I thought Cassidy went to Italy with her husband! There is no way in hell you're there."

"No—it's a different friend you haven't met yet."

"Good morning Aubrey!" Tanaka exclaimed as he stepped into the room with a plate of eggs and toast. "I hope you like scrambled with Monterey Jack, that's all I had left in the fridge."

"Who's voice is that Aubrey! Is that a man's voice!"

The woman slapped her forehead as she heard her mother in the background slamming things in skepticism. Not her daughter she said, she would never have a man friend.

"Daddy I—"she whimpered, twirling her fingers around. Tanaka rolled his eyes and took the phone from her. Aubrey hollered at him to give it back, but got a plate of hot food placed into her hands.

"Hot damn this is hot!"

"Aubrey Mason!"

"Hello sir, this is Tanaka Moe, I work with your daughter. I promise you she is good hands. In fact after breakfast I promise I'll bring her straight home Mr. Mason."

"You better. I want to meet you face to face."The father ordered before hanging up the phone.

"They baby you far too much. You are like twenty-something and they are breathing down your neck like dragons to control you."

"They have their reasons Tanaka!"

"Like what…that's what I thought. This is going to be a problem if we don't talk about it now."

"You said enough already! I shouldn't have been here in the first place. I've made my mind up never to deal with you again. If there is anything you want to say to me you can say it after you have taken me home in a nice distant email—"

Glass fell from the bedroom window as a brick went straight past the woman's face and into the wall. Eyes wide and fearful Aubrey covered her head and curled up. The Asian sneered as he reached for the gat hanging from the back of his pants.

"Don't think for a second that Lady Vanity is done with you Moe!"

A tight muscled being crawled past the shattered barrier tearing open his sticky flesh with every movement. Aubrey peeked up to see the hoarse voiced invader. Hideously beautiful and poignant dark blue skin defined his godly physique; his orange shaggy hair and matching wings seemed to expand in the endless heat wave embracing him.

Tanaka didn't wait a single second later to pull out his 9mm pistol and tug the trigger. Two shell casings clanged as they hit the floor; the bullets only braised the skin of the creature heading towards the bed. Aubrey let out a high pitched squeal as the beast held her down. Hot spit dangled over the girl's slender exposed neck; his teeth only moments from sinking into that supple meat.

"You fucking son of a bitch." Tanaka growled, before tackling the beast to ground. Spit flew from his mouth as he yelled and thrashed his gun across the being's face. Worn Tanaka aimed the barrel at the demon's head before pulling the trigger. Intense laughter rocked off the walls as the creature disappeared into a whirlwind of blue dust.

"Vanity is coming for you and your whore wife!"

Tanaka flipped up his middle finger before grabbing his co-worker from the bed. Terror had almost completely immobilized her. She felt truly fortunate that she was able to hold her bowels for that long. Shaking with utter terror Aubrey braced against the wall and released the digested food content left in her gullet.

"That shit is what I wanted to talk about Aubrey! That can't wait for an email." He scolded, while pacing back and forth. Tiny beads of sweat decorated his now colorful face as his nerves nauseated his quaking body. "This is why I don't get close to anybody! That bitch is crazy, sending some fucking low level hit man after me! I'll roast that ass hole!"

"W-what was it?"

"He is one of Cecilia's little henchmen; he goes by the name Arctic. You'll come to find that there are a lot of those out there, demons. They are real Aubrey and I am one of them." Tanaka said with a bit of regret. "We have to get out of town as soon as possible. We can visit your parents but only for a short while understand."

"Wait. What-what are you saying—"

Tanaka huffed as he frantically grabbed ammo from under his bed. From his closet he snatched a duffle bag full of clips and extra weaponry to pack his remaining bullets. "Some friends of mine are getting a place set up for you to live in, hopefully one that has a damn strong barrier. Sometimes there are things you must do in order to survive."

"You are a demon too! Hell no! I'm safe with my parents, thank you. I won't be anybodies breakfast."

"So you think your parents can kill Arctic…no fuck him…do you think they can defend you from Cecilia when she comes and she will come! The stuff needed to kill them, humans can't get their hands on easily. Your best chance is with me!"

"And what about my parents, what if they come after them? I want them to come with me—"

"I have instructions to bring you along solely!"

"It's only my mom and dad!"

"It's final Aubrey! Don't you think I asked about them? We'll see what we can do to protect them. In the meantime, we need to start going!"