I slipped in the window, which had been left open for me. The crime scene had been processed; the coroner’s on-site prelim completed. The only person in the room besides me was Detective Sergeant Patrick Mulligan. I knew Mulligan – he was an honest cop who admitted that sometimes, a costume could handle things a uniform couldn’t. At the same time, I was not on the Boston PD’s list of approved people to call in, which meant that he wasn’t sure the PD could handle it. Or there was another reason. A call on the way over to my contact in the coroner’s office confirmed it for me.
I looked out over the city. Dark and full of history, and full of darkness under it. The birthplace of liberty and revolution… and the Irish Mob.
(This story is actually the first of the cycle, preceding other published stories.)
The trip from the bus was short. This morning she’d gotten off the ship at the Port of Newark. A walk, a bus to Newark, then Greyhound to New York. An hour got her something American to eat (she’d learned to like Filipino food, but man, that first hot dog…), then to the next bus, to Boston. She walked to Downtown Crossing, then caught the Orange Line to Haymarket, then another bus to where she’d lived. She’d had enough money to afford the trip.
The pay for a dockhand had been okay, especially since it was mostly off the books, and the captain would be annoyed at her desertion, but also pleased to have “LilamataPurple-Eyes” (as he’d called her) off his ship, getting rid of the woman and the bad luck superstitious sailors thought women brought on board. Click to continue reading.
James Donobran stepped out into the rain, locking the door of his brownstone behind him. He muttered two short incantations: one summoned a small dome of force above him, and the other cloaked it to make it invisible. He flipped the collar of his coat up to keep the wind off, and stepped off into the streets. His goal was a couple blocks away. Should be simple, a quick errand.
Mellisa Flanagan, or more accurately with how she dressed and with her clip-on hair extensions on, Marishka Petrovskaya, walked down the block, a few blocks from the club she’d kidnapped a mob boss’s son from a few weeks before, hands in her pockets and head down. She was going to her favorite (not favorite) dive to talk to someone she could get information from. The weather was cool, and a little rainy, and she wasn’t enjoying it. She would have preferred to be up there, above the streets, running across the rooftops and launching herself with her swingline, the wind in her face.
So intent in her grumpiness was she that she nearly was surprised by the three large men in t-shirts, jeans, leather jackers, and boots, all with the particular hairstyle popular with the not-quite-made-men associated with the Patriarca crime family’s street muscle. One of them sported a bandage across the front of his somewhat crooked nose.
/* “Look What You Made Me Do
The club was at the same time brightly and dimly lit: the moving lights of the club made it hard to concentrate on anything else if you were not dancing, shining on something for a moment and then moving on. The pounding beat didn’t help, nor did the smell of sweat and alcohol, or the movement of the bodies on the dance floor.
Midnight and change.
Annaliese Korper sat on the broken chair in the run-down studio apartment in the worst suburb of Seattle. Mentally, she reviewed what she had, and admitted to herself it didn’t amount to much.
Four years ago, she’d had everything she could have wanted: a good job, money coming in, a nice apartment, and a night job as a superhero. She’d even, thinking back, had what looked like a relationship. But it hadn’t been, really. And that was the problem, right there.
(Text surrounded in [square brackets] is spoken in Russian.)
The Model Cafe once had been a nice place to eat. That was years ago.
Now it was a dive bar, and the place to drink for more than a few Russian expats. Even on a Sunday night, a half-dozen of them were mostly drunk, boisterous, and unable to keep playing the darts game in the middle of the bar. A couple of the hot dogs the place was known for were in pieces on the floor and the bar, and the bartender was looking at the group dubiously.