Where Evil Lurks

Welcome to Moonlight Madness - Where Evil Lurks

This is the fourth story in my Moonlight saga.

Story One - The Beginning - Beth's Diary

Story Two - With Arms Wide Open

Story Three - Barely Breathing

Cast of Characters

Monday, April 16, 2012

Chapter 12 The Debate

Sunday morning the four friends sat around the table eating their respective breakfast choices. Three of them were very aware of what the previous evenings activities were and one of them was praying that wasn't the case.

She tried to be okay with it; it's not like in college when people gave you the high five when you'd spent time between the sheets. People had sex, she knew that but being in such close proximity with three vampires who could so easily tell was unnerving to her, to say the least. She knew very well that not only did she and Josef make love last night but that Mick and Beth most likely did too, judging by the loving and happy looks they were sharing this morning. However, being pretty sure about it and being able to scent it were two very different things and try as hard as she could it still made her uncomfortable.

Was she ashamed that she and Josef had such a healthy sex life? Nope, but it was a private thing for her and with vampires around the sanctity of their relationship felt like it was somehow less than the special bond that they had. Complicate those feelings with the thoughts that Beth had once told her that Mick could sometimes scent the events of the past and it made her want to hide away from all of them.

The three of them all acted like it wasn't any big deal; could they really keep their noses to their selves so easily? If they could smell it all how could they? She was afraid she'd walk around with a perpetual smirk if she scented sex all around her. Maybe they were just better people than she was, who knew for sure.

All she really knew was that ignorance really was bliss sometimes.

Josef, Mick and Beth were all drinking some O+ for their breakfast and Lani sliced an apple and banana and scooped out a helping of peanut butter onto her plate and sat it and some pineapple juice on the table to eat.

Josef watched as she dipped the pieces of fruit in the peanut butter. She loved the stuff to be sure and he was guaranteed to see it at least once every day. It smelled interesting but the looks of it were revolting to him.

Beth finished her O+ and then reached for a piece of Lani's apple and dipped it into the gooey mess and popped it into her mouth. "You know, if I couldn't eat food any longer this is one thing I would really miss for sure," she said, licking a small bit of peanut butter from the corner of her mouth.

Lani couldn't help but wonder how it tasted after the blood but decided it was probably about the same as drinking orange juice after brushing your teeth; you just got used to it.

"I know, I will definitely miss it myself someday and so I'm eating every bit of it that I can now."

All three vampires caught the future reference and Beth grinned; she knew Lani and since her mind was made up it was going to happen, one way or another. They’d had a long talk about it last evening and Beth now knew that it was Lani’s decision, not Josef’s. In fact, he looked a bit shell-shocked about it which meant that he wasn't quite ready to deal with it yet.

"Did you ever eat that stuff Mick?" Josef asked, hurriedly changing the subject. He caught the grins that Lani and Beth were both wearing and knew that he was caught.

"Not before I was turned. I mean, they had it but I never tasted it. But that week that I was human again I tried it. I have to say, I liked it," he answered with a laugh.

Josef grimaced and said, "It looks more like something that comes out of a dirty nappie than something you would eat." He leaned over and sniffed it and added, "Smells good though!"

Lani stuck her finger into a dab of the substance and popped it into her mouth and watched as Josef's eyes sparked for a moment. Oh, sometimes it was just too easy...

"Delicious! Mick, you mean in the army they didn't have little cans of peanut butter and crackers in the C-rations?"

He laughed and said, "Not that I ever ate. Doesn't mean they didn't have them though."

"Hm. Well, that's too bad. Glad you got a taste though. What was your favorite thing that you ate that week?"

"It would be hard to say actually, most of it tasted pretty damn good."

"Um, yeah, the bait Mick?" Josef smirked.

"Well, okay. The sushi wasn't so great. Or rather the green stuff wasn't and I threw all of it all out. Ice cream was good, a lot better than I remember; coffee too." He thought for a moment, thinking about the food he had ate. "I really enjoyed the taco's I had; they were really tasty. Some things didn't taste as good as I remember though."

"Like what?" Beth asked, curious. They'd really never talked much about what he had thought about food, 2008. She knew about the sushi and Kung Pao chicken experiences but he'd never said that much about the other stuff.

"Macaroni and cheese. My mom used to make the best macaroni and cheese. The stuff in the box just didn't taste the same at all."

"Did you expect it to? It came out of a box," Lani laughed.

"I don't know. Poor substitute I guess. Some things just didn't taste like Mom made them."

"Yeah, how I miss boiled potatoes and cabbage. Yum..." Josef laughed.

Beth looked puzzled for a moment and then saw how Lani was laughing and realized he was being sarcastic. "Well, I hope there were other things to eat besides that Josef. And just where did you eat those things anyway?" Here was hoping he'd share a bit of information.

"Not a chance Lois Lane," he said, reverting back to the pet name he'd had for her on the road trip because of her curiosity. "Let's just say that it wasn't here in the states."

Lani ducked her head down in an effort to avoid Beth's eyes, which were regarding her narrowly.

Lani knows!

"Someday Josef, someday you're going to spill the beans!" Beth promised, her eyes sparkling brightly.

"Maybe, maybe not!"

Later that afternoon after hanging out in the pool the talk switched gears to Katrina. It had been preying on Beth's mind all day, what was going to happen.

"I know that she disobeyed a direct order Josef and I know that we have rules but please just make the punishment fit the real crime; her not doing what she was supposed to do. Please don't punish her because of what happened to me." Beth looked at Josef, her earnest face giving him pause.

"Beth, what if Kelly had done that to someone else? Someone who didn't want to be turned? The rules are there for a purpose."

"I am not disagreeing with that Josef. But in my case it was for the best; so punish her, execute her for disobeying you, not for my turning."

"Beth, how the hell can you say that?" Lani said, her voice almost a yell.

"Lani, my life is better for it." She looked at Mick who clearly agreed with Lani and Josef. "I get it, I'm in the minority here, just do it fast, please."

"That bitch deserves to die horribly; I'm sorry that you don't see it like I do Beth. I watched Kelly almost slice your head off and then I killed her! It was pure reaction on my part and I can't say that it didn't get to me at the time but she almost killed you. If Mick hadn't been there..."

"Then Elka would have turned me." Beth shrugged, knowing that there was really nothing left to be said. They didn't see her point of view and she didn't see theirs.

"So you'd rather she be let go?" Lani said, practically spitting the words.

"No. I understand the rules Lani. Every society has to have rules; I didn't always understand that," she said, taking Mick's hand in hers and rubbing it lightly. "But I do now, I get it."

She sounded so sad Mick noted; it had been a hard lesson for her. Was she right? Were they executing Katrina for the right reasons? He knew that he couldn't be objective about it; he wanted the bitch dead. Beth had been attacked twice because of her and it was time to take her out. He tried to hear what Beth was saying but he couldn't accept it.

Josef leaned towards Beth; they were all sitting around the poolside table and he looked at her kindly, but firmly. "Beth, you have such a kind heart and I understand that but vampires are treacherous and tend to just do what they want. If you don't maintain control and make examples of the consequences when the break the rules we'd have rogue vampires everywhere and a lot more human death. Her actions could have caused someone innocent to die, as I told you. Please, you have to understand this."

Beth nodded, tears in her eyes and looked at each of them sorrowfully. Lani still looked defiant and that was so typical of her. She took it to heart, protecting and standing up for her loved ones. She might not like or agree with them but she'd fight for them. A good trait really but Beth could actually use someone right now that got where she was coming from.

Oddly enough it was Josef who finally helped her; he couldn't stand to see her hurting so much. She'd been through so much already and this was perhaps the hardest of all for her. She felt like Katrina was being executed because of her, which wasn't the case. Privately he agreed with her, Mick would have delayed her turning for years, even if they had made a baby, especially if they'd made a baby.

He reached across and tilted her head up so that she could meet his eyes. The tender and kind look in them astounded her and a small sob escaped from her as it all sunk in that this was going to happen.

"Beth," he said, looking into her crystal blue eyes, "I understand and I know it's so hard for you. I'm not doing this because of you but because of what might have happened otherwise." It wasn't really the truth but hopefully she'd buy it - he was doing it because of the overwhelming guilt he felt because he'd not done his job, which was to make sure that Katrina had done hers correctly. "I admire how much you want to stand up for what you believe is right, but this has to be. Please believe me."

His gentle tone soothed her and finally acceptance sunk in. She didn't have to like it but she let it go. Sometimes you have to know when to fight and when to surrender. "Thank you Josef, for understanding that."

"Okay," he said with a smile. "How about a drink everyone? Beth, since you can eat food can you get intoxicated? Mick, I think we should do tequila shots and find out!"

"I don't know Josef," Beth said and he couldn't help but notice the tears were all but gone. "Guess we could try."

"Let's head in and change and then we're going to have an experiment! C'mon, let's go!"

In the end, they discovered that she could indeed feel the effects of the alcohol; she a Lani both were giggly and wobbly and it was Mick aided by a completely clumsy and clueless Josef who fixed dinner for them. By the time Mick and Beth headed back into LA all seemed okay with the world for Beth. If she just tried really hard to ignore what was happening tomorrow that is.


The next morning Josef and Lani stopped by her place to grab clothes and toiletries for a few days for her. He didn't really think that Katrina had anyone still working for her here who would go after Lani but he wasn't taking any chances. She gathered enough for a week and Josef carried it all down to the car. She had left the beach clothes at the house so at least there was room for it all.

"I'll send someone to get the Maserati later if that's okay?"

"Sure," she told him as she sank down into the seat of the Ferrari.

She’d been quiet this morning and Josef knew that something was on her mind, but so far she hadn’t spoken up which was unlike her.

“What’s going on Lani?”

She looked at him and sighed, accompanied by a slight smile. “I’ve just been thinking about Beth. Is she right? Are you guys doing this for the wrong reasons?”

Not ‘are you guys doing the wrong thing?’ he noticed. “I can’t speak for anyone other than myself but I’m doing it for several reasons, already disclosed Lani. We have to have rules and we have to enforce them.”

“And if those rules get you a bit of revenge, that’s good too?”

He looked at her sharply, trying to understand where she was headed.

“I don’t mean that you shouldn’t feel that way Josef because I sure as hell do. If I had the chance I would hurt her badly for what she did. I feel disloyal to Beth because of that. Beth has never been one to hold a grudge and she hates hurting anyone. She’s going to live with this forever, even though it’s out of her hands Josef. I love her so much and I’m afraid she’s going to hate me because I can’t support her.”

“Sweetness, she understands why it’s happening. It might take her a while to move past it but she will.” He thought about when she came to him about Dean Foster, the paparazzo that was stalking Mick. It was hard for her to ask him for his help, knowing what he was going to do but she also realized that it had to be done. She got over that and she’d get over this too.

He hoped anyway.


Beth was silent that morning as Mick got ready to go to the meeting about Katrina. She thought wryly that they were calling it a meeting but they all knew exactly what it was: torture and execution.

She was trying to be okay with it; she understood why it was happening and that was okay. What she wasn’t okay with was what they were going to do to her. Vampire vengeance, vampire justice, didn’t matter what you called it; it meant the same thing.

Mick came downstairs dressed all in black, including the duster he was shrugging into. He stopped in front of her and pulled her to him tightly, feeling her tremble in his arms but she didn’t say a word.

“Beth?” he asked, tilting her face up to his but she looked away, unable or unwilling to meet his eyes. He sighed and kissed her on the forehead and let her go. She walked into the living room and sat on the couch, not looking at the door or him as he prepared to leave. He grabbed his keys and stood hesitantly at the door for a few seconds, willing her to turn to him, to say something but he finally left, shutting the door behind him quietly when he realized she wasn’t going to say anything.

As the door closed he heard her break down, sobbing as she tried to deal with it. He wanted to go to her, but he couldn’t. This was one of those things that they had to learn to deal with; he hated it but Katrina was going to pay.


They met in Tango’s office at the warehouse; Tango, Josef, Mick, Miguel and Logan. The men talked about how things had went over the weekend and also that Katrina hadn’t admitted to having any accomplices at all. They knew that they’d already found some of them and Tango was inclined to believe that there weren’t any more, not within the cleaner organization anyway.

“We tried everything we could. Hell, she doesn’t have any fingers left because we kept burning them off, nothing made her talk. I’ve called all the cleaners in for the display this morning; nothing will get the information out into the community like gossip from the cleaners.”

“I want that bitch to suffer as much as possible,” Logan stated and Josef eyed the young man speculatively. This wasn’t Logan’s usual thing and Josef was of the opinion that it just might be too much for the young vampire to see. Logan was still an innocent in many ways and while everyone had to grow up perhaps there were better ways. Still, the fire burning in his eyes convinced Josef to let him be there but he would draw the line at Logan actually participating.

IF there was anything else other than her execution to watch that was. God help him but he kept thinking about Beth; dead is dead his head kept telling him even whlie his heart screamed for vengeance.

She had apparently been put through a lot of misery during the weekend. The stake had been pulled several times in order to give her a sip or two of blood, enough to keep her semi-lucid. As the men walked in Mick, Josef, and Logan got their first look at her since it had all began. Miguel had been there during the past weekend involved in the process of keeping her in custody.

All three men were shaken to the core when they saw her appearance. She was bloody and dirty and wild-eyed with the need for blood. Mick couldn’t believe how sunken her eyes and cheeks were. He looked away and suddenly he understood what Beth had been saying: just how much did a person have to pay for what they’d done?

Vampires weren’t humanitarians; they weren’t ruled by sentimentality. They thrived on visceral stimulation and this presented the perfect opportunity for that goal.

Except he couldn’t do it. Beth’s pain rang true in his heart. “Just kill her and be done with it Josef.”

Their eyes met and Josef nodded almost imperceptibly. It was in his mind too, Beth’s feelings.

“What? NO!,” Logan exclaimed. His voice was only a notch under hysterical. “Make her pay for what she did!”

“Logan, she’s paid. Look at her, she doesn’t have anything left in her - she’s done.” Mick watched Logan as he stared at Katrina who was sheathed in silver chains. The stake had been pulled out so that she could be more aware of what was happening.

Katrina’s eyes opened slowly; dull, black fathomless eyes that couldn’t focus on anything or anyone. She started laughing then, knowing the moment was here. Then laughter gave way to tears that finally stopped. Her eyes had cleared a bit and she raised her head a notch as Josef picked up the flame thrower.

“Josef, why don’t you let me?” Tango said. He could tell that it was getting to Josef and Mick both. He didn’t understand why but he knew that it had gone as far today as it was going to go.

Josef looked down for a moment and then looked at Mick expectantly. Mick stared ahead blankly, not meeting Josef’s eyes.

The answer was clear. Josef lifted the flame thrower and Mick turned away. He remembered Josef’s words when the Monahan’s had been executed, “We don’t have to watch this.”

He didn’t have to and he couldn’t. As his footsteps echoed hollowly over the floor he heard the power boost up and Katrina scream. He hung his head for a moment but knew that he had done the right thing.

To be continued...


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the post!

Joangel said...

Wow! I half expected Katrina to escape before Joseph got back. I'm glad she's gone.

Thanks for another exciting episode Hope!!!

Hope said...

Hey Anonymous!!

Thank you so much for reading! :)

Hope said...

Hey Joangel!!

It was time for her demise; she hurt so many people, including the people who worked for her at the cleaners when she kept money that should have been theirs.

Thank you so much for stopping in to read and make me smile!! :)