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Vampire Murders Part 16

Vampire Murders Part 16

Connie makes a big choice to get well sooner.

There was a thin layer of frost covering the city as the bright red sun rose slowly. Slade woke early, looked outside and put the coffee on before showering. While he was in the shower, Eran called and left a message about the estate in the suburbs. The owner of the transport company indeed owned the estate and had for over 150 years. She also had more photos of the estate from various angles showing guards patrolling and cameras spread out over the grounds. After showering, Slade dressed and sat checking his computer for news and email. Nothing new showed up there and he listened to his messages. He checked his office messages and heard the one from Leona. He smiled when he heard the ending and knew she was fine. He could not wait to see her tonight.

Even though it was well before work began, he called Eran back and told her, "Gather up the information you collected and meet me at DDs when you can. I will be there in about 45 minutes."

He sat and finished his first cup of coffee of the day. The day started early, but several things happened overnight, which needed noting and recording. He walked around his apartment whistling, happy to have his girlfriend back and a new assistant doing a lot of groundwork for the presentation of the case for prosecution. Things fell into place and he felt good.

Eran arrived at DDs exactly one hour after she spoke with Slade. She appeared well rested and ready to go to work. She greeted the other police officers she met last time and set herself up next to Slade. She got her coffee and a donut for her breakfast and spread out her collected data for Slade to examine. She spent time explaining the house and the grounds but when Slade told her Leona was back, she became overjoyed. She continued her explanation of the estate happy with the results of the earlier escape. Instead of a search and rescue, the estate exploration became a search to accumulate and gather evidence of murder and mayhem.

Indeed, it was a very good day.

When Slade and Eran finished their small conference with coffee and donuts, he suggested, she return to the squad room and fill out the required papers to get a search warrant for the estate. She agreed to that and gathered her papers. He stood and walked her out to her car and thanked her for her able assistance in the case. He kissed her cheek to show his appreciation and affection for her being there. She blushed brightly as her heart raced at the touch of his lips on her cheek. She leaned against her car to prevent him from seeing her swoon from his soft gentle kiss. She fumbled for her keys, but his firm gentle hand grabbed them as they fell and he used them to open her door. She quickly climbed in the car, hiding her now red face from his view. She stole her keys back, started the car and sped out of the parking lot. Slade stood watching her leave and scratched his head at her behavior.

Slade looked at his watch and thought what to do next. It was too early to go to the squad room, but also too late to go back home. He decided to go visit his partner Connie. Her progress was slow and her healing kept her from helping with the case at hand. He really needed her input and insight to blow this case wide open, capture the murderers and wrap this case up cleanly. He drove slowly to the hospital as his mind wandered over the past weeks' events. So much happened that it overwhelmed him at times. His focus remained on the six murders of young women. That was the prime case right now. All the other crimes related to the initial six could wait and be used as fill later.

He walked into Connie's hospital room, dismissed the guard on duty and sat on the edge of her bed. Connie extended her hand to grab his strong hand. He leaned down and brushed her lips softly with his. She smiled and saw his expression soften immediately. He told her about Leona's kidnapping and escaping her captors. He told her about Eran and her superior sleuthing skill using computers to gather and store data. While he sat with Connie, the doctor entered the room and examined her charts. The doctor shook his head, as he looked at the charts and looked a little disappointed.

"Doctor, what is wrong? She is getting better right?" Slade inquired softly.

"Detective Slade, she is getting better, but her progress is not what we hoped it would be. Her flesh wounds are healing at a faster than normal rate, but her broken bones are not knitting, as quickly, as they should, given her age and the drugs we are using." The doctor responded. "Looking at her x-rays, the bones are fusing but not healing. We may need to break them again."

Slade looked at the doctor and at Connie. His heart sank at the prospect of losing his partner for a much longer time. There had to be something, which could make her heal faster. He wondered about it and the concern showed deep lines on his face. His face showed the deep concern and he seemed to age before her eyes. Connie squeezed his arm. She wanted him to look at her and smile, but he kept his eyes averted. He rubbed her arm and watched the doctor make notes on her chart.

When the doctor left, Slade turned to Connie, smiled weakly and squeezed her hand. She saw the disappointment etched on his face and a tear rolled down her cheek. She turned her head away from Slade but failed to hide her tears as she sobbed. Her sobs became louder as her whole body shook with her crying. She leaned into Slade, as he put his arm around her. She shook so hard, he almost fell off the bed. His arms sought to console her but failed as he started to shake with rage and a deep sadness.

Slade put his hand under her chin and turned her to face him. He kissed each tear as it fell from her eyes. She wrapped her good arm around his neck and pulled him to her. She needed his strength and love right then to sustain her. She held him tightly until her tears and sobbing subsided.

Tears welled up in his eyes, as he looked at her and said, "I do not know what to say or do Connie. Why did it have to be you? I miss you and want you with me every day by my side. We have to push through this and get you back with me." His shoulders shook as he choked on those last words he spoke. He turned away from her because men don't cry.

"I know, I know. I want to be by your side holding your hand and helping work these cases. I feel so badly that I went to the Main Artery and the bomb blast trapped me." She strongly spoke trying to make Slade feel better. "It is late. You need to get to the squad room and work on the case."

Slade left her room after kissing her goodbye. His heart wept for his partner. Tears ran down his face, as he drove to the police station and entered the squad room. Eran looked up from her desk and sensed his sadness was more than just on the surface. She smiled at him trying to make him smile, but all he did was scowl back at her.

She stood up at her desk, grabbed the rather large pile of paper she worked on and walked over to Slade. When he scowled up at her, she wanted so much to slap his face to make him either break down or smile. She looked at him, signaled that he should follow her and went to the large conference room. When they entered the room, Eran closed the door and sat down opposite Slade. Slade sank deeply into the chair and almost had his chin resting on the table he was so low. She looked at him and his dour face.

"OK, what is wrong, detective? You look like someone ran over your dog." Eran asked.

"I went to the hospital to visit Connie and the doctor came by to check her. He told us that her progress is too slow and there is something preventing her from healing her broken bones faster. They may have to break them again to promote faster healing. It means she will be out a lot longer and I really need her here." Slade blurted out soulfully.

"There is nothing you can do to help her, so snap out of it!" Eran chided him.

He smiled sheepishly and sat up from his slouched position. "You are right. There is nothing I can do except to give her my shoulder and support. So let's get busy and put this case to bed." Slade perked up and said gruffly.

"I have the application for the warrant ready. All it needs is the witness statement from Leona attached and we can take it to the ADA for the warrant. Do you have her statement?" Eran inquired.

"No, not yet, I will get it from her tonight when she wakes up. She has not told me what happened. You can come with me to the meeting between Andrei, Leona and Gustaf tonight. That way you can record the statement and get it typed." Slade added.

"OK, I will drive myself there tonight. I promise to be careful in the parking lot." Eran replied.

They cleaned up the conference table and organized the stacks of paper. Everything cataloged and recorded ended up in the required files and locked away. A special training class about vampire law needed the conference room that night. Slade and Eran were exempt from the class because they worked daily with the vampire community and the master of the city. They knew more than the class would cover in one night. As part of the integration of vampires into the human society, several classes about vampires originated in this squad room. The most important part was the discussion of the Vampire Justice System. This session would take place in two weeks with presentations from Gustaf and Leona. Eran and Slade wanted to sit in on that presentation.

When they finished with their clean up, the sun had set and Leona was awake. She called Slade to talk about him coming over to see her. Slade told her they would be there shortly to take a statement from her about the kidnapping. She was reluctant to give a statement. However, she would try her best. Slade assured her it was for the best and she would do fine. They hung up and Slade packed up his desk and waited for Eran to gather her stuff for the trip.

Slade followed Eran from the police station to the parking lot of the Main Artery. He walked with her into the club to Gustaf's office where she set up her laptop to capture the statement. Gustaf watched the proceedings and monitored it with his own equipment. Andrei sat in and kept out of the scene to maintain his anonymity. Slade sat next the Leona and held her hand to help her relax. The statements took about fifteen minutes and another twenty to type up and print. When done Leona signed the four copies. Slade and Leona walked Eran to her car and watched her leave safely. With the help of testimony from Leona, Slade filed for a warrant to search the house and grounds for evidence in the murder and kidnapping cases.

Leona wrapped her arm around Slade's arm and held him close to her. They walked back to the club and the office area. Gustaf welcomed them back and became very talkative about nothing in particular.

"Detective, how is your partner doing? I am ashamed because I haven't been to see her. I feel responsible for her injuries." Gustaf sheepishly asked.

"Not as well as she should. Her bruises and cuts healed, but her bones are not healing well at all. They may go in and break her bones again to help them heal faster. It means she will be gone from here longer." Slade sadly replied.

Leona thought for a few minutes and said excitedly, "Vampires heal quickly and can grow new parts easily. Maybe we can help Connie get better faster and prevent the prolonged absence and re-breaking of her bones."

Gustaf shook his head and added with some reluctance as if he hid something, "She would heal in days rather than months. She would be as good as new. We have just the vampire to make her heal in town right now."

"Andrei has a lot of experience in performing the needed spells and procedures to heal a human. He has never failed at it. Do you think Connie would consent to trying this to help her?" Leona asked.

"We only need to ask her." Slade said.

"Can we visit her tonight? We are not family or partners so we can't visit after hours. How can we get to talk to her?" Gustaf asked.

"You can come with me tonight and we can visit her together. That will allow you to tell her about it." Slade spoke softly with a little hesitancy.

Slade stood up, helped Leona up and went to leave the office. Gustaf and Andrei joined them as they left the club. Gustaf waved Sam away from following them. They climbed into Slade's car and drove to the hospital. They got there and entered through the Emergency Room to bypass the front desk guards. They went to Connie's room, dismissed the guards and sat with Connie while she slept. Slade spoke Connie's name softly and she woke with a smile on her face. When she saw the vampires in the room with him, her smile faded slowly. She looked at Slade questioningly.

"Connie, relax we are here to visit and make a proposal to you about getting better." Slade told her.

"What is the proposal?" Connie asked.

Leona spoke up, "Vampires have the ability to heal quickly and become stronger and survive the trauma you suffered as if they were minor injuries. We can transfer those healing properties to humans to aid them. We are here to offer you our help to heal faster. Would you like our help to heal?"

"Can you wait outside while I talk to Slade about it?" Connie spoke cautiously.

The vampires left the room and Connie asked Slade, "What do you think? I am not sure I want their help. They are the reason I am here. What do they think they are doing?"

"Well, for purely selfish reasons I want you back with me as soon as possible. I know we are starting a romantic relationship and you need to get back on this case. It is your decision, but I would take what help is offered to heal. They are here because they feel responsible for your injuries. They did not have to make this offer." Slade told her.

"I want to get out of here. If there are no bad side effects, it is worth the risk. Bring them back in, please." Connie spoke softly.

Slade went to the door and invited the vampires back into the room. They filed in and gathered around Connie's bed. Andrei took Connie's hand and held it palm up. He told her that what was going to happen is the exchange of blood between Connie and Andrei. It is similar to the old ritual kids did of becoming blood brothers. We need to exchange blood through a new cut on the palms of our hands. Being in a hospital makes it easier because they have the instruments needed to cut and close any wounds.

"Are you ready, Connie?" Leona asked.

Connie shook her head and looked at Slade. She watched his eyes as he looked back at her. There was a silent message of strength that passed between them. She smiled cautiously and mouthed 'I Love You' to him. He smiled back but did not say anything.

Leona took a scalpel like knife from her person somewhere. She sliced Andrei's hand followed by cutting Connie's hand. She placed their hands together, palms pressed tightly and wrapped in a cloth to hold them. The blood from each individual mingled and the vampire blood influence passed into Connie's body. She felt a slight tingling and warming of the cut in her hand. The warmth spread up her arm and throughout her body. She felt light-headed and swooned. Slade jumped up to go to her but Leona shook her head 'No' to stop him. After twenty minutes, Leona removed the cloth covering the two hands. Slade and Connie looked at her hand and there was no evidence visible that a cut split her palm. Andrei looked at his palm and watched as his cut healed. It was now a matter of waiting, watching as Connie's body absorbed the vampire blood and the healing started.

The vampires and Slade stayed for an hour, watching Connie as her body reacted to the new blood and healing capability. So far, her reaction was as a typical human. He body temperature rose and the body turned on its healing mechanisms and ran at full blast. If this were science fiction, it was like there were an army of nano-bots released going around repairing the host back to full health and keeping her there.

Connie chatted with all of the visitors as she felt the best she had in weeks. As she spoke, she got tired and slowly went back to sleep. Slade gathered the visitors, pushed them out and kissed Connie good night. They walked out and the officer who should be in the room returned to watch Connie sleep. Connie and Slade failed to see the facial changes of the vampires. A strong look of concern and horror spread from face to face. Something was wrong, but it was too late to stop it now.

Slade drove back to the Main Artery. The three vampires sat quietly distant in the car. Leona sat as close to Slade as she could. She did not have her hands on him though. She was markedly distant. Gustaf and Andrei watched out the windows as the city floated by. Slade noticed the silence and wanted to say something but decided to wait until he stopped driving. The drive seemed to last forever in the silence.

Slade drove into the lot and parked. Gustaf and Andrei bolted from the car and went to the club quickly. Slade got out and helped Leona alight from the car. He held her against him as he closed the car. He brushed her cheek with his lips and hugged her tightly. Leona held him but kept her arms loose around him and rested her head on his shoulder. As they walked back to the club Slade held her around the waist, but she let her arms stay by her side. She was very introspective as they walked. This bothered Slade, but he kept thinking. It was great that Connie decided to take the help that the vampires offered. He was happy in his heart and soon his partner would be back.

As they got to the club, Leona perked up, but stayed cool with Slade. She went to the bar, got some juice to drink and carried it back to the office. Slade followed her and sat on the couch. Gustaf and Andrei were talking very loudly in Romani, when Slade entered the office. Leona followed him and sat listening to the argument. She shook her head, finished her juice and looked at Slade.

"I would like some tea. Can we go to Cafe Rendezvous now? This argument could go on for days. It has in the past so we can leave and they will not miss us at all." Leona pleaded softly.

Slade stood, offered her his hand, she rose and went with him. She stopped before they left the office, grabbed Slade, turned him to face her and kissed him softly on his lips expressing her love for him.

This story is protected by International Copyright Law, by the author, all rights reserved. If found posted anywhere other than with this note attached, it has been posted without my permission.

Copyright © Copyright 2012, 2013 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 by Cal Erickson, aka frogprince

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