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

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Chapter 42 Love Always Finds a Way

Malcolm stood in front of Dakota and the ever present, ever clinging Vixen who seemed to do most of the thinking for him. He had to force himself to stand still and not squirm under the scrutiny of their gazes. He waited a full 3 minutes before they chose to speak to him.

“Well, what excuse do you have this time, Malcolm? Or is it Matthew? Which name are you using this time?” Dakota fixed Malcolm with a wintry stare and then flicked an unseen bit of lint off of his arm, disdain written all over his manner.

“Excuse? Try the hard truth, Dakota.”

Vixen sighed and pursed her scarlet lips together, an eyebrow arched to an unbelievable degree. “The real truth or your truth, Malcolm?”

“The only truth. This isn’t the 1790’s, Dakota and the French Revolution. You cannot just whisper witch or vampire and have the people run in panic and revolt. There are now witches everywhere and don’t even get me started on vampires! They love vampires! They read books about them, watch movies and television programs about them. Hell, they think they’re sexy and women drool over the thought of meeting one. The old plans don’t work any longer!”

“You weren’t told to follow the old plans, Malcolm. You were assigned to make the humans suspicious of one another and thus cause fighting amongst themselves.”

“The humans are already fighting amongst themselves and they’re actually pretty good at it. This country fights that country, one god fights another for supremacy, neighbors against neighbors and brother against brother; the list goes on and on,” Malcolm stated with a grimace. “Just leave them alone, they’re getting rid of one another all on their own.”

“We don’t want them to be gotten rid of you imbecile! Where would that leave us? We are a superior race; it is our destiny to rule them because we are stronger, faster and smarter than they are.” Dakota looked down at his fingernails for a moment as if contemplating his next words. “Well, some of us are at any rate.”

Malcolm knew that his cause was lost. They weren’t going to listen to him, that much was clear. He sighed in resignation. “So sorry to have disappointed you, Dakota.”

“Disappointed you say? Sorry? I actually expect little from you and you couldn’t even manage that. You are worthless.”

The words at first pained him and then made his blaze with anger. “If we are so much smarter than the humans how is it that they managed to figure out that the guillotine was the way to kill us before? We couldn’t win against them then and we can’t win against them now!”

“SILENCE! Enough of your whining!” Dakota motioned to two guards who had been waiting in the shadows of the room to come forward. “Stake him and throw him into a cell. We’ll see how three months of depravation suits him!”

Malcolm stared at Dakota with hatred blazing in his eyes. Silently he let the guards escort him out of the room. Three months was a long time to be staked, and while his body won’t move his brain would be active. Lots of time to plan revenge. He was tired of working for the Equalizers, there had to be something better out there.

He’d figure it all out, one way or the other.


Josef came home, reluctant to tell Lani about what had happened. He was very worried about her to begin with because she hadn’t been feeling well. He’d done nothing more than the bite, without drinking blood when they made love but it hadn’t helped. He’d even tried to back away from intimacy with her but she was insistent that they make love often. Something was wrong and he didn’t know what it was.

Her taste was a bit different as well and for the life of him he couldn’t tell exactly what the difference was and that made him worry all the more. He’d suggested that she see her doctor and she’d only sighed and said that maybe she should. But so far she hadn’t made an appointment and he had decided no more sex until she went to get checked out.

Now, he had to tell her about Beth and he didn’t know how to do that. The two of them were so close and she was going to freak out with worry, no way around it. Josef didn’t even want to think about telling Dorothy and Robbi; Dorothy surely didn’t need the added stress right now.

Franklin greeted Josef in the foyer and immediately knew that something terrible was wrong. “What has happened, Josef?”

Josef pursed his lips, his grim look startling Franklin. “I have to give Lani some bad news, Franklin. Beth has been kidnapped and we’re not really sure where to look for her.”

“Go to Miss Lani, Josef and I’ll bring you a drink.”

“Yes, I will. How is she feeling?”

“She’s very quiet, and pale as well. She did mention that Miss Beth was going to call a friend of hers, a doctor who is a vampire so that she didn’t have to explain, er, the marks on her neck.”

Suddenly, Lani’s reluctance to go to the doctor made sense. But just as the relief of that feeling washed over him he realized that since Beth wasn’t here Lani would have to wait. They needed to find someone else and quickly. Josef couldn’t help but smile a bit at how much Lani had confided in Franklin who had taken on the role of father figure to her; Josef knew that Franklin would fight to the death to protect her, but he certainly hoped it would never come to that.

“Did she eat dinner?”

“Yes, she did. She seemed hungry.”

Josef nodded, a bit relieved. “Is she in the living room?”

“Yes, she is.”

Josef murmured his thanks and headed down the hall. He found Lani curled up on the sofa, an afghan wrapped around her with a book in her lap. She’d evidently been reading when she’d fallen asleep. He decided to carry her up to bed; his drink could wait. He scooped her up in his arms and she snuggled against his neck and he heard a soft, breathy, “Josef…”

As he carried her up the stairs he was thankful that tomorrow was Sunday and she could sleep and rest all day if she liked, if she would and he somehow doubted that she would when she heard about Beth. But still, he hoped that she’d be willing to do just that.

First thing in the morning he was going to get the helicopter up and begin searching, if they had any information at all to go on. Just searching for a black van that might or might not be in a garage somewhere wasn’t going to be of much help. He hoped that Logan might be able to give them some type of coordinates, somewhere to start at least.

At some point during the evening Lani had changed into a nightgown and robe and he removed the robe and slid her into the bed, tucking the covers securely around her.

When he started to walk away she held her hand out and said, “Don’t leave me, please?”

He leaned down and kissed her and murmured, “I’ll be back as soon as I undress, Sweetness. Just close your eyes and rest.”

She nodded and fell immediately back asleep, knowing he’d be in bed and holding her soon.

He stood looking at her even more worried than before. She had been so excited about the party this afternoon but perhaps it had been too much for her? He knew that she’d never have missed it but she was just so worn out that even that little bit of excitement had been too much it seemed.

He headed downstairs and quickly told Franklin the whole story while he drank some fresh A- and chased it with a glass of scotch. Franklin was very upset over the news because he also adored Beth; she and Lani were so happy and lively together and they always brought a smile to his face. He hoped that they would find her quickly.


Mick made the call he’d been dreading and as luck would have it Clark answered the phone; it seemed Dorothy was sleeping because she’d been tired after the party.

Mick heard Clark’s heartbeat speed up and his breathing become harsh as he waited for him to talk. Finally Clark got himself under control and said, “What happens now?”

“We do whatever we have to until we find her, Clark. I know she’s okay because she’s sending me messages.”

“Messages? How?” Clark was thoroughly confused.

“I don’t know, mentally I guess. Rose told us it would be possible, but she never worked with us about it but Beth is doing something because I can feel her at times and I knew when it happened because she told me.”

“Have you talked to Rose to see if she can help more? Maybe we can track her that way.”

“I’ve left a message for Rose and hope to hear from her soon. When are you going to tell Dorothy?”

“In the morning; I won’t wake her up with this news. She’ll be pissed at me but she’s going to need to get every bit of rest she can.”

“Sounds like a good idea. Look, I’ll keep you updated, okay? Every step of the way, Clark.”

“I know you will, Mick. Goodnight.”

“Goodnight, Clark.”

Clark stared at the phone for a moment, and then hung it up in the cradle. He had almost said, I know you will son. He felt as if Mick was his son in many ways and not just because he was married to Beth whom he considered his daughter. This family was becoming more cohesive and a real family, as it never had been before. He and Logan were once again like brothers, the girls were all together; it was good. No it was amazing and all because of a vampire named Mick St. John, who had brought the family together.

Now they just had to bring Beth home and somehow, deep in his gut he knew that they would.


Audrey and Logan worked feverishly, trying to narrow down the search areas for Beth and Max. They ran through the traffic cams and satellites over and over, looking for a clue as to where the van had disappeared to.

Logan was sure that had skirted Victorville, not gone directly into it but that left a lot of ground to cover. If the van had actually gone into Victorville they surely would have picked it up on the traffic cams. So, did they head farther east or did they head north, via 395? Both ways had lots of desolate landscape, which might be good for moving around without being spotted. Both were desert areas though, rough for a vamp to handle.

They finally settled on using a terra-gazer satellite which gave them the clearest pictures and would be the least likely to focus unwanted attention on them. The terra-gazers were used by scientists to track changing topographical information and could provide fairly clear pictures and the best part was that they were all real time pictures. They would have to search grid by grid; it was slow but if there was a black van that wasn’t parked in a garage they might find it.


They hoped.

Audrey fixed coffee and even Logan drank some; it might not do anything for a vamp but it was comforting for him, the warm brew reminding him of all night study sessions in college.

The boys watched it all with curiosity and then finally curled around one another and slept. If their thoughts could have been interpreted Logan and Audrey would know that the cats thought mom and dad were crazy and that the clickity-clack of the keyboard made a lot of noise. Still, they slept the night away as Audrey and Logan scanned the landscape. At sunrise they realized how much they had missed in their haste to find something at night. Both of them decided to get a few hours rest and come back during day light hours and search some more.

It wasn’t much but at least they felt as if they were doing something.


Beth looked around her, at the cell that held them captive. One of the advantages of vamp vision was that it was easy for her to see in the pitch blackness of the bunker. Max was resting, but she still felt too warm and had only drank a bit of the water and refused to eat any of the apple. Beth had ate it at Max’s insistence and she had but she was already aware that although she could eat human food, her body still wanted the blood and in a few days it would demand it.

Luka had said very little so far; he’d obviously realized she was a vampire too but neither he nor Henry seemed afraid of her. She had a million questions and realized that both of them were still awake and decided now was as good a time as any to ask.

“How often does he come in here?”

“Once a day or so, it seems anyway. Time in here is sort of, well, it’s hard to tell for sure,” Luka said.

“And he always brings some water and food? Is that how you’re surviving?”

“Yes but it’s not usually much. Enough to keep us going, considering that we don’t need a lot of energy because we’re not expending much. Beth, how long have I been here?”

Beth thought about it and answered, “Six days, Luka.”

He nodded in the dark and didn’t realize she could see him. “My estimations were pretty accurate then. Henry has been here a bit longer, almost two weeks then.”

“And others have been brought in and killed, but you two have just been left alone?”


“Any idea why?”

“It’s because we’re different,” Henry said. “We had…lives…I guess. Most of these people were street people; nowhere to go and nothing to do really.”

“How did you both end up here?”

Luka spoke first, saying “I was going to meet someone about a list. Carl and I had been trying to arrange it for awhile and when the call came in Carl wasn’t available so I stupidly went on my own. He found me there and I think I was just in the wrong place at the wrong time. I surprised the hell out of him, but then he surprised me too.”

“It was the same for me really. I run the men’s shelter near Hudson Park; I’m the pastor there and I heard a scuffle in the alley and went out to investigate. He got Walden and I both that night.”

“What happened to Walden?”

“The same thing that you saw tonight, a couple of days after we got here. It’s the same thing, over and over.”

“Why do you think he’s targeting street people? It doesn’t make sense.”

“I don’t know. For the most part they are quiet when they get here. Maybe they figure it’s at least a place to sleep now that winter is coming. I’m not really sure, Beth.”

“Somehow guys, we’re going to find a way to end this. I don’t know how yet, but we will find a way.”

All three were silent, thinking about those words and the possibilities they held. Beth settled down on the floor, trying to quiet her mind so she could focus on Mick, on communicating with him. She hoped that practice would make perfect.


Mick settled back on the couch, thinking of Beth. Rose had called and she and Brody would be over in the morning but in the meantime she had told him to just focus on his connection with his mate. He imagined seeing her face, the feel of her in his arms, wrapping himself in the sweet scent of her. He ached to hold her in his arms, safe from all harm.

A thought occurred to him suddenly - that she could see him, wherever he was she had said. Even at this distance he wondered? A new idea came to him and he went to his office and pulled a sheet of paper from the printer and a black marker out of his desk. The words her wrote were simple but he meant them with all his heart.

He went back to the living room and settled back on the couch with the sheet of paper on his chest so that if she saw him she might be able to read his words.

My Beth, I love you. I will find you.


Her mind searched for his and then she saw him, on the couch in the loft. She read his message to her and it brought tears to her eyes as she read his words, his heart.

I love you too, Mick. I love you.

He knew, he felt her. He brought his hand to his lips and kissed his fingertips and held the hand out in front of him, just as he had done in New York, against the taxi window. A tear trickled down his face as he realized he felt warm, the warmth of her love across the miles.

Beth reached her hand out to his, their fingers touching for a magical moment, each warm and secure in their love.

Distance cannot keep two hearts apart that are meant to be together.


To be continued…

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