Chapter 4: Hellspeak pt 2

We arrived on my street corner shortly. I made Dim pay the driver. The man thanked us in Spanish, sped off. We stood on the street corner at one in the morning, just standing there. Dim grew impatient. He started whistling, walking in circles. Then he grunted loudly.

“What in hell are we doing here, Chambers?” he screamed.

“Waiting,” I told him. “Keep your voice down, you old shitbag. Or the bulls will be here.”

“So? They can’t do nothin’ to us. We’re protected by supernatural beings.”

“How do you know one of them don’t have a supernatural protector?” I lit a cigarette, blew smoke in his face.

Dim shrugged. “Point taken.”

Off in the distance, we could hear a voice calling out for newspapers to be sold. I threw my cigarette down, started for the corner of Laney and fourth. “Come on,” I yelled to Dim. He ran up behind me as we crossed a dead street.

“Newspaper boys in this day and time? What are we in the nineteen forties?”

“That’s my contact,” I growled at him.

“Hey, I ain’t knockin’ it.”

We saw Little Jimmy hawking his newspapers. The twelve-year-old black boy turned every which way, calling it out. He saw me and a huge smile came across his face. He spit out the match that had been between his teeth. He put his hands around his waist. I stopped in front of him. Smiling sideways, I patted him on the shoulder.

Dim came up behind us. “Oh, brother!” Dim snarled. “You two gonna kiss or what?”

Little Jimmy’s eyebrows narrowed.  “Who is this cracker?”

“Its okay, Jimmy. He’s with me. I need info.”

“I’ll see if G’nal is available. You ain’t the only one in his stable.” Jimmy said.

Dim went white. He stepped back a little. “Whoa….G’nal is….you and G’nal?”

“Yeah. What?” I was getting a little tired of Dim. He was sure as hell getting on my last nerve.

“Nothin’.” He put his hands up. “He’s….pretty damn powerful….is all.”

“Stand over there,” I pointed at a sewer grate. “Stay out of the way.”

Before I knew it, I was surrounded by a cloud of black smoke and no one in the whole world mattered. G’nal stood before me. A tall shadowy figure with stabbing red eyes.

“You are back,” His voice boomed. “I was beginning to think you didn’t need me.”

“It wasn’t like that,” I looked away. I wondered if I would have to see Maggie. I wasn’t sure if I was up for that. “I just needed…time away from things.”

“You need information about what?”  There seemed to be a faint of hostility in G’nal’s voice. Or maybe it was just my being paranoid. I guess at any given moment he could abandon me as I had abandoned him.

“The Mayor and senator Grimes.”

“Both deceased,” G’nal finished for me. “This is a mess. Why are you involved?”

“Someone made me an offer,” I said.

“The fool down there?”

I nodded.

“You should have refused,” G’nal said. “He’s insignificant. He does not carry any weight in the underworld.”

“Yeah? I guess I should have known.” I sighed.

“But he could have caused you some problems. You can trust him as long as you give him what he wants.”

“He says his boss wants the culprit for the hits on the Mayor and Grimes. Why would someone kill them like that?”

G’nal chuckled. “They are a part of a group that controls everything in the city. Four powerful people who have worked their way up in the black arts. One of them is a Police Chief. The other is a very rich man. The culprit, as you put it, has a distinct fragrance about them.”

I thought a minute. “Death?”

“Yes.”

“Why can’t Dim’s boss smell it?” I asked.

“He hasn’t achieved the status of Reaper. I have.” G’nal said. “Humans can smell it.”

“Tell me who you smell, then.”

“I have no interest in this. Just follow the flies. You will find him. Before you ask, it all hinges on power…complete control of the city and a status in the underworld.”

The black smoke was gone.

I felt a hand on my shoulder. Dim snickered. “So where is your demon friend?”

“Already spoke to him. It’s a distinct smell. You’ll know it when you come across it. He also said to follow the flies.”

Dim took his hand from my shoulder. His face was drained of all color. “You mean those flies?” He pointed to the cab driver who was walking toward us. The black flies were apart of him. His arm would break away, turn into a small sect of a swarm, and then regroup. The cab driver was menacing enough with those two black eyes scowling, his presence taller by two heads than me and even three and a half heads taller than Dim.

I looked at Dim, he swallowed hard, grabbed me by my coat. “I’m afraid this is a little out of my league….powers and all, Chambers. I suggest we run. And fast.”

“No…” I whispered. “It can’t hurt me.”

“Uh…You need to brush up on your demonology, friend,” Dim said nervously. “Your protector can’t protect you from a Sicarius. A demon assassin. You asshole! You got a hit out on you!”

Next Tuesday, Chapter 4: Hellspeak pt 2

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