302 Briarwood Terrace


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Scene Title 302 Briarwood Terrace
Synopsis Amato and Munin ambush Felix and Kaydence when they arrive at 302 Briarwood Terrace, expecting to find the body of an old woman and the man responsible for a recent string of murders. What happens is something nobody could have anticipated.
Date October 8, 2008


Queens is the largest in area and the second most populous of the five boroughs of New York City. Located on the western portion of Long Island, Queens managed to avoid much of the physical ruin attributed to the Bomb. However, Queens on whole suffered from something far more significant in the wake of the explosion that tore apart New York — economic crisis. With much of Queens relying on industrial productivity for its commerce, it was the mass exodus of many businesses from the New York area following the bomb that crippled the borough.

With refugees pouring in from the western portions of New York following the destruction of Midtown, Queens was inundated with homeless of all walks of life. Food shortages, coupled with the collapse of Queens business centers and the strain put on local police only furthered what would become one of the most embarrassing mishandling of a crisis situation the city had ever seen. Weeks after the bomb hit, riots swept through New York by the panicked populace, this was felt most hard in Queens, where food riots ravaged the businesses that dared remain open. Shea Stadium was used as temporary shelter for bomb refugees, and the riots that swept through Queens enveloped the stadium as well, resulting in a remarkable loss of life in the chaos.

Ever since, Queens has settled down from the turbulent weeks following the nuclear explosion. But while its scars may not be as physical as Midtown's are, Queens suffers just as the rest of New York does, under the shadow of that broken skyline to the west and the collapse of its social and economic centers. Queens is now a ghost of its former self, slowly struggling to recover from the damage done.

Amato can't help but allow himself the smallest of grins as he lets the receiver fall back into the cradle. The apartment did in fact belong to Harriet Anderson — before the bomb. It's not Amato's fault, nor is it Munin's, that the old lady died tragically while taking a cab to the doctor's office on November 8, 2006. The deed done, Amato straightens his suit jacket, then his tie, before he surveys the mess he's made of the room. He didn't have to do much, though. The apartment has already been looted by neighbors or whomever else decided they wanted a crack at the old woman's belongings.

Thanks to Munin and her own flock of dedicated followers, the police their sending along won't be too much of a hassle. But Amato's slight smile dies as he watches the unit pile out of their cars only to be swarmed at by a flock of pigeons.

There is one good thing about simple-minded winged rats. They do what they're told.

By the time Kaydence and Felix arrive on the heels of the already dispatched blue-shirts, the collection of New York's Baton-Toting finest lie in bloody, bedraggled heaps on the ground. Most are lacking their eyes, their faces streaked with blood and frozen in terror. There are a few feathers and bird carcasses here and there, but it would appear Hitchcock's dream army has prevailed and currently feast upon their spoils.

Fel has seen a lot. He was present for 9-11, he helped sort through the rubble of the towers. There's not much left that can shock him. But the tableau of the mutilated cops has him stopping cold in his tracks just after stepping out of the squad car — he's gone a terrible shade of gray. He doesn't stagger, but he stares at the mangled bodies, face utterly empty. Only some bizarre sort of Evolved can explain this.

Kay sits stunned in her car, almost afraid to open the door. "Holy sh— " She leans over and digs through the center console between the seats of her green Camry until she finds a pair of… ski goggles? A favourite costume piece for Cole, Kay's suddenly grateful that she doesn't always clean her daughter's toys out of the vehicle. She adjusts the strap to fit snuggly and only then does she exit the automobile, leaving the keys in the ignition. Her firearm is immediately drawn and pointed toward the ground. Slowly, she makes her way toward the building.

Perched on a blood-spattered fire hydrant, one of its claws closed around the stringy remains of an eye, is a large raven with chunk of flesh in its beak. Upon seeing Felix and Kay, it gives a low croak, beats its wings a few times and launches itself into the air with a surprising amount of force for an animal of its size. Slowly, lazily, it glides past the pair and onto the stoop of the building where the front doors have been left open — an invitation?

Standing to one side of the window, Amato looks down at the detectives like a prince or a king in his tallest tower — only he's on the third floor of a condominium. That smile starts to return, but then the blond slips back into the deeper shadows of the apartment. Unseen by any, he takes up a position where he is concealed on one side of the slightly open door to the outside hallway, a rag and bottle in one hand.

Jolted out of his reverie, Fel catches up to Kaydence, shaking his head to himself. "Let me go first, considering my reaction time," he urges her, though as the ranking cop she's in charge of this little shindig. He's got his own pistol pulled, as if ready to clear the building in front of her.

"Find another way in. This is obviously some sort of trap," Kay murmurs. "No sense in us both walking right into it." She stares up the building slowly, just missing catching a glimpse of the prince in his tower. "Go on." She strides quickly for the forboding entryway. It isn't that she isn't cautious, it's that she wants to get away from those damn creepy birds.

"No," insists Fel, sticking to her, pace for pace. "I'm fast enough to spring one and get away. Let's clear this one by one, by the book," He's already got his cellphone out, calling for backup the only way he can, considering he doesn't have a police radio on him.

The raven flutters aside, making way for Kaydence as she makes her way up the steps and through the complex's front doors. It keeps one beetle-black eye on Felix, its head cocked at an inquisitive angle.

"Fine," Kay grinds out, shooting Felix a dirty look. "You wouldn't be like this if it were Demsky." She can see the glass ceiling from here. "Don't get yourself killed." And don't get me killed. The first thing she'll look for once inside is the stairwell.

"I would. Because to the best of my knowledge, you're a vanilla human. And I am not, nor ever have been," Fel says, calmly. "It has to do with chromosomes, but not X and Y in this case, Kaydence. Don't get your panties in a knot," He takes point, a few paces ahead of her. The raven gets a glance….and then he suddenly points the gun at it, instead.

The raven turns its head away from Felix and tucks its beak under its wing, beginning to preen. It doesn't make much noise but for the rustling of feathers and the occasional chortle — any interest it might've had in the pair is gone. Inside, the sound of footsteps echo swiftly through the stairwell as someone — or something — begins making their way up, up, up…

Oh, he did not just go there. Kaydence Lee gapes at Felix's back incredulously. "I didn't realize leaving the department made you an asshole. Just because I don't have some kind of—" She stows her arguments for now. This isn't the time or the place for it. They have a job to do. She'll kick his ass later. Without another word, she moves to climb the stairs.

Oh, but he did. "Make way for Homo Superior," Fel quotes blithely, permitting himself one of those knife's edge grins. He's casting around for any trace of recent passage — how long since another human's actually been in here. "It's not that you don't. It's what I can do. And that isn't just, oh, making the flowers bloom, or something," he murmurs.

"Shut up. Shut up before we find out if you can dodge a bullet." Kay's hands grip around the handle of her gun just a little tighter. God, he's infuriating sometimes. It's times like this that she really appreciates her partner.

Well, he was a bitch back when. And joining the Bureau has not helped a whit. But Fel is silent as he precedes her up the stairs, grin fading into that grim look again. "Come into my parlor said the spider to the fly," he murmurs.

"Men," Kaydence Lee mutters under her breath. "You're all the same." Frustrated, she picks up her pace. Just need to get to 302. Then they can find out what's going on here.

The detective’s voice carries well up the stairs, and without any guarantee from Munin in regards to taking care of the unknown variable that is Felix, Amato has to think fast. He glances around him before selecting a rather heavy brass mantle clock that was either completely overlooked by looters or deemed far too tarnished to fence without the administration of a few pounds of elbow grease. Juggling it a bit in his hand, Amato tightens his grip and raises the blunt object. Whomever decides to come through that door first is going to have a nice long meeting with Father Time himself.

There's the door. The moment of truth. Fel takes one side, and gestures gracefully for Kaydence to take the other, so they can do a proper room-clearing, just in case. Mutely, he counts it down by holding up three fingers and curling them in, one by one. And then, he bursts through it, gun drawn. Hopefully all this will do is scatter the roaches and leave him looking foolish and rather overdramatic in an empty apartment.

While not a very physical man, Amato is strong enough to bring the clock down toward Felix's head with considerable force. It is amazing the amount of courage one can draw from faith alone. The other hand is ready with the soaked rag, but one thing at a time. One thing at a time.

And Fel is a blur of motion, inhuman in his speed. That particular boast, at least, was true. He does not, however, fire his pistol. Rather, it's the clock he reaches for, attempting to summarily rip it out of the taller man's hand and hit him with it in turn.

Amato had not intended to lose that particular object, so when it is wrenched from him, he instinctively leaps back and out of the way, into the shadows of the dark and desolate condo. He is well aware of the pistol, however, and while he lacks a firearm himself, Amato is not unarmed. He goes for the knife at his belt, a small yet effective weapon, and slings it at Felix's belly. Though he's too far to be bludgeoned by the speedster's blow, he's not too far to miss his mark with the blade. Not only should he not miss, but with his momentum, he should be able to sink the silver blade rather deeply.

The sound of crying ravens fills the air, a muffled shriek of many birds scattering from outside, even those perched outside of the window sills of the condo seem to be frightened away by something. As the birds scatter, the sounds of their cawing and shrieking grows distant, until eventually their frenzied calls fall into silence.

"Felix!" Slower than her counterpart from the Bureau, Kay's a few seconds behind when she comes charging into the room with her gun out. She tries to line up a shot with Amato, moving deeper into the apartment to do so.

Reflexes like that will take you far. But they don't do you much good if you overcommit. And Fel has. The clock is hurled back at Amato, still with some of that unnatural speed - but in doing so, he doesn't dodge out of the line of the knife. Not enough. IT sinks deep into his flank, rather than the gut, but it's still a severe wound. There's immediately blood on the floor of the condo, even as Fel bares his teeth at Amato. "Freeze," he snarls, breath coming in hissing gasps.

The clock appropriately clocks Amato in the shoulder, but following the motion rather than fighting it keeps him on his feet. "You first," he growls in a distinctly German accent before he focuses his eyes on Kaydence.

In the next moment he's springing toward her, rag extended and aimed at her face as his other hand fights despite his throbbing shoulder to grab her gun and twist it out of the way.

Men. Kay looks shocked when Felix's blood spills on the ground. They're all the same. "Shit for brains," the detective growls frustratedly just before it registers that she's the new target. His aim is true. She takes in a deep lungful of air and holds it as the rag comes toward her, but everyone's got to breathe sometime. Especially when their adrenaline's pumping and they're struggling. Amato only manages to wrestle Kay's gun from her hands after she can no longer hold out against the effects of the chloroform. Her eyes blink, lidding heavily once. Twice. Then it's all over.

Fel doesn't dare use his speed. He'd bleed out in seconds, the way it affects blood pressure. But that doesn't prevent him from firing at Amato, albeit with less than stellar aim. Even confining himself to purely mundane levels, he's not got long before blood loss takes him down.

Inside of the apartment, the air seems to thicken, the temperature rising just enough to be noticed. The air becomes stale, a dryness to it that only grows over time. A moment later, Felix and Amato catch a sight of something strange nearby, a bowl of fruit situated on the table near the entrance is shriveling up, as if it had been thrown into a microwave. The fruit turns gray, then white and ashen looking. A potted plant hanging by the adjacent window starts to brown, then turn gray and withered, looking as though it hasn't been watered in months.

Following this, there comes an odd sensation, a prickling tingling in Amato, Felix and Kaydence's extremities — though the latter can't feel much of anything at the moment. It is a feeling like fingers and toes of a limb that has fallen asleep. This feeling grows, becoming more profound over just a matter of seconds. Following this, the sound of hard soles shoes slowly striking the hardwood floor in the hall can be heard, along with the evenly interspersed thunk of a cane.

"By the pricking of my thumbs…" Hamlet. The voice calling out that Shakespearian line is deep, rough and worn. It has a weight to it, a burdened and tired tone. "Something wicked this way comes." By the time the second line is finished, the light from the apartment door has been snuffed out, casting the hall in darkness. The voice seems to emanate from the area cast in shadow, and soon the sound of footsteps begin working their way into the condo itself. Following the footsteps in a haze, a black and misty haze that seems to devour the light in the room the closer it gets to the darkened silhouette of a tall man. Light, however, gleams off of a single shiny piece of metal, the steel head of a cane cast to resemble a snarling wolf's visage.

Bullets whiz past where Amato crouches holding Kaydence's limp form, and the sound of bullets striking a body are heard, followed by a pained grunt, and then a low, angered growl. Whoever, whatever stands there in the shadow didn't drop. Being the closest to the shadows, Kaydence and Amato's skin begins to pale, their veins darkening as tingling begins to turn to pain.

Amato doesn't have to hear the voice to know that his master is near. He gulps, shutting his eyes tightly as he clings to the woman, glad that his hands are gloved. "Master," he chokes out — eyes glued on the evidence of decay directly before him — fighting back against the cold grip that the aura has on his body, the vessel of his very soul. "Master, please." Moving out of the condo would only pull him, not to mention his bait, deeper into the field, and moving further into the condo would only put him closer to the wounded and armed law enforcement officer.

There's brittle, incredulous laughter from the flagging Agent. Of all the ways he thought it might end, this wasn't it. He's wavering visibly now, sinking down on one knee in a very awkward genuflection, even as blood streams past his fingers from the wound in his side — so much for trying to bolt out the door, not that he could steel himself to abandon Kaydence. He squints into the dimness, what little light there is glinting off his glasses. And haltingly, he recites, still grinning humorlessly, "Even a man who is pure of heart….and says his prayers by night…may become a wolf when the wolfbane blooms, and the autumn moon is bright." He hasn't relinquished his grip on the pistol, but it's as if it's gotten too heavy to hold up; the barrel sinks without another shot.

"Please?" There is a low, haggard tone to the voice beyond the shadows. Amato's breath catches in his throat, a sensation of suffocation mixed with tingling pricks of pain hedging into his body. Then, it only grows worse as the footsteps grow closer, prickling pain turning into shooting discomfort and a feeling of scalding heat beneath skin, "A bird shows me my way here, gossamer wings leading me to what?". Veins blacken at the exposure to what looks like rolling waves of black fog that seem to churn and boil around the dark silhouette of a tall man. The cane thumps on the floor, and as painful as the sensation is, it passes as the man does, walking up to the gun-toting agent who falters under the loss of blood. "This?" The shadowed man comes to a stop not but paces in front of Felix, and that same wracking sensation of pain in his body that Amato had just felt grows, this close the shadows only conceal portions of the tall man's body. The Agent can see weathered and old skin, wavy gray hair, and a tailored black suit. The cane is lifted, pressed under the Agent's chin to lift his head up. Eyes that look to be nothing more that dark, hollow sockets peer back. "I am disappointed." The comment is not directed to Felix, "You will find mercy in this, in my disappointment."

He pushes with the cane against the Agent's throat, sending him backwards with just a nudge onto his rear, gun clattering against the floor. The veiled visage of the man turns, peering at Amato through the haze of darkness. "Enough has been done wrong in my name this night." He adds in a grim tone of voice, and Felix can hear the sounds of metal hitting the floor, even as his vision begins to blur from the burning sensation under his skin. Bullets, forcing their way from within Kazimir's skin fall to the hardwood floor. "Let this second life I afford you, be one well lived." The cane is raised, motioning to Amato, then to the door, "Go."

With such mercy, Amato doesn't have to be told twice to retreat. After all, he can attempt to explain himself (and console the undoubtedly terrified Munin) later. Hitching Kaydence up into his arms with quite a strain, Amato moves as quickly as he can given his condition out the door and away from his master and current tormentor.

October 8th: A Possible Lead

Previously in this storyline…
A Possible Lead

Next in this storyline…
Guilt and Innocence

October 8th: Guilt and Innocence
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