I didn’t want Walker alone with any of the dragons or the human. He might off and pop them because he could. But the humans needed a scapegoat, and this man would provide one. And the boy, I didn’t want him to get hurt; he was only a kid.
“We are really going to question her?” Walker asked.
“You heard her, there is something more going on. We need to understand.” I shrugged.
“Normally, I’d just call a cleanup crew,” he added.
I smiled. “We can walk them right in the back door.” I wove a platform of air and tied her arms and legs to it with more air and she floated with us as we climbed down the fire escape ladders to the living apartment again.
The man and the boy walked in front of Walker and I lead with the floating tied dragon behind me. But no one saw us. The veil was thick around us, people saw what they expected to see. It was a good trick. Some vampires had a similar ability. I had only met one who could do it well, but there were rumors that Il Cane could hid in plain sight of any Venatori and no one would ever find her. She was meant to scare you, her powers were godlike for a reason – she was the singular forced that kept the vampires in line. Their council sent her after the big bad vampires. She did what we did for all the races. And I had hunted her once.
It was a good memory. Every new Venatori out in the field is given a list of names to hunt and kill with a mentor beside them. And every new hunter gets one name – Il Cane or more importantly her real name – Cari Giovanni.
It’s a trick test to see how many people take forever to figure out who she is and that it was a test. Most people fail it. They either try to hunt her down and fail, or they fail to recognize who she is and their mentors just out right tell them.
I fell into both categories. I hunted Il Cane, however I knew who I was hunting. When Michaela told me to give it up I did, but once I completed my first assignments, I hunted her. It was a test of my skill.
Between my cases, I tracked Il Cane to Florida, where she keeps a large estate. One to which I’ve been on.
I didn’t find her, but I found her son. Figlio del Cane, Ant Giovanni, was legendary in and of himself, the only born vampire who couldn’t walk in daylight. He stalled me and told me to stop hunting his mother. She had sent him to let me know I had done better than any other hunter – in her life time. It was high praise. Ant and I hung out for a few weeks comparing notes on our jobs and we worked together whenever I had a vampire case.
It was a good memory, and it had taken me all the way home with little incident. Walker had said nothing to pull me out of my memories while we returned to the Apex Unlimited Building. The back doors shielded Venatori guards on the inside from view. They shook their heads as they saw me and my now human dragon behind me. She’d thought to escape my bonds of air with the shift. When that failed she moaned in subjecation. I wasn’t an idiot, the bonds reacted to all her movements – never too tight, never too loose..
Walker and I lead the three dragon conspirators upstairs to HQ. We took the elevator – it was faster than taking the 20 plus floors and I wasn’t sure the human man would make it.
I knew we ascended in the service elevator, but my heart didn’t race when I didn’t see the floor getting smaller below us.
My phone blipped a text from an unknown number and I smiled as the doors opened. I’d have to take a look at it later, when I didn’t have a dragon to contend with.
Dae’lin and Gary greeted us – the two heads of the field hunting office. Gary had a frown on his face, and Dae’lin remained neutral, she was used to my presents.
“Why are you bringing us three detainees?” Gary asked. His voice sounded sleepy. I was glad someone woke him up. It was already a long night for us. Let someone else join in on our misery.
“This is the dragon who we caught on camera that Walker’s been tracking down. She attacked us, Walker shot her, I’d have let him finish her, but she mentioned The Dragon and humanity dying. She won’t speak to us. At least not before she dies. She needs help. I’ve done what I can to ease her pain and clear her breathing but she’ll die and she had important information.”
Gary asked, “Why the human and the boy?” Walker had the same question in his eyes but he hadn’t asked it before. A show of solidarity with the detainees. It was noble of him.
“The humans need to catch someone for the bank robberies. He’s your man. Spin the story he’s the mastermind. Plant the evidence – the usual and you satisfy the cops. The boy is just that, a boy. I couldn’t leave him in the house alone.”
Gary was fuming now, there was a pulsing in the vein in his neck that made me think of drinking blood. A vampire would very much like this state of Gary. “What the fuck am I supposed to do with a dragon boy?”
“Put him in with the toddlers until the dragons can come get him.”
Naomi squirmed and thrashing in her bonds at what I’d said. The human man cried out, “They’ll kill him.”
I smiled. “If you cooperate, then I’m sure we can work something out to save your son.”
Gary frowned and pushed me back in the elevator. “Dae’lin take the bonds. He’s making offers no one can keep. Get now! Walker come with us. Explain things.”
Walker nodded, “Yes, sir.”
Dae’lin gave me a smile. “Enjoy your birthday, Nox.”
I frowned at her as I walked out of the elevator and headed towards the stairs to go back to my room.