I have reached the halfway point! Getting ready to go into Week 3 tomorrow a little ahead, but not enough to rest on my laurels. So, I’ve written the scene that had been in my head, and I honestly have no idea what is coming up next. With the bit of cushion I have, I think tomorrow will be the day I take some time to plan out a little bit more of what’s to come.
By the way, if you have been keeping up, as I mentioned in the last blog post, my character did something unexpected. He grabbed the cell phone. I knew the phone was there, I knew London was on the other end, but the entire time I pictured the scene, Leon never grabbed the phone. Until he did. Now, to see what he did with it…
I landed hard on the balls of my feet, but I managed to blunt the force by a forward roll. I came out of it and took off at a dead run. I brought the phone up to my ear as I ran. “Xavier, I want you to listen, and listen well. If any harm comes to the women you have there, you will answer to me. I swear this.” Before he could answer, I hung up the phone and put it in my pocket. Once I did that, I had no idea what to do next or where I was running to.
I needed to go back to my place and get Cat, but I knew there was no way I could get there on foot or by bus that would have me arriving before the police, who I suspected would be on their way shortly. I imagined he would be okay for a short while, but at some point he would need to be taken care of. I shook my head. So much for not letting physical attachments color my world. Here I was, on the run from what would soon be the entire police force, and my biggest worry was what would happen to my cat. That little fur ball had managed to do what no human being had done in centuries.
I decided to try my luck heading home first. Maybe I would get lucky and Jack would send them looking elsewhere for me, thinking I would be too smart to head to my house. Only one way to find out.
I managed to snag a bus and once again, headed to the back. I kept my head down and pulled out the phone again. It appeared that Jack had not been too concerned about security. He didn’t even have a PIN locking his phone, which had been a stroke of luck for me. I scrolled through his contacts. Lots of women on his list. Something told me there would be no answer at any of those numbers. I pulled out my notepad and jotted down the last number dialed, to one Xavier London, then I decided to scroll through the pictures, hoping that he might have taken advantage of the technology to record his kills for posterity. No such luck. As I suspected, Jack was too smart to keep anything like that close by or easily traced to him. But, I imagined that Xavier probably had a storehouse of photos taken by him of both their kills. I still could not believe that Jack had managed to find someone who shared his predilections. I supposed I should not have been surprised. One thing I have learned is that Jack is not the only one with those desires coupled with an insane blood thirst. In reality, it probably should have been surprising he hadn’t found others, even started a cult by this point.
The only useful thing on the phone turned out to be the phone number. But I knew it could serve another useful purpose. Useful to Jack, at least. He could track the phone, and he was probably in the process of doing just that. I slid the phone between the seats and got off the bus. That should send him on a merry chase, and it could possibly buy me enough time to get home, get Cat, and get gone.
I was not to have that luck. A couple of police cars were parked in front of my house. I quickly ducked back behind the corner and pondered my options. Dozens of competing thoughts fought for dominance in my mind, and I had to force myself to take several deep breaths, in, out, in, out, to calm myself and allow myself to think clearly.
One thing I needed to do immediately was switch out of my police uniform. That made me stick out in any crowd and would make it impossible to blend in, something I was sure I would need to do once that All Points Bulletin hit the airwaves. Knowing Jack, he probably already had that ready to go before he even waved me into the office.
That would be my first task. I would find a clothing store, get something less conspicuous, and on the way, I would ponder what my next move would be.
It was about a twenty minute walk out of my residential neighborhood until I hit a street bustling with retail shops. I stepped into a department store, made my way to the mens department, and found the most nondescript, generic clothing I could find. Khaki pants, a white, button up shirt, a brown zip up windbreaker, and a brown mesh baseball cap. I took my collection into a fitting room and changed. I debated on leaving the uniform behind, but I imagined that someone would call that in, and surely someone here would be able to describe me and my new clothing. No, it would be safer to take them with me. I did not like that it would encumber me if I did need to run. But it was the safer option.
The last thing I needed to do was safely stow the gun and holster in the waistband in the back of my pants. The last thing I needed was for that to be noticed and some concerned citizen either trying to apprehend me or calling it in to the police.
I took one last look in the mirror. Everything looked as plain as could be. I gathered up the clothing tags into one small pile, grabbed those with one hand and my uniform with the other. I made my way to the nearest register, paid in cash, got an oversize shopping bag for my uniform, and headed back out.
I felt a little less conspicuous, which was enough of a relief that I could slow down for a moment and consider my next move. If I couldn’t get to my house, maybe I could slip by and get to Xavier’s apartment building. If he was still there, that would be a start on turning things around for myself.