Local police are puzzled and the town is terrified. The Admiral's Elite must find a killer, stop him without anyone finding out their true identities, and not be torn apart in the process.
The smell of decay hit him full in the nose and Michael skidded to a halt, putting a hand out unnecessarily to signal Ryan to do the same. He’d caught the same scent. Both fell into a crouch and Michael squinted into the white mess, scanning for signs of movement.
“Holy fuck,” Ryan breathed from beside him. “Found it.”
Michael followed the track of his unit member’s gaze to behold the skeleton hovering on the rock, a living creature straight out of a nightmare. The wind had picked up with the storm and whipped the dark tattered clothing about the bony gray creature’s filthy head. He registered that the lump in front of it was alive and not a part of the rock. She was curled into a ball and a howling sob rolled out just as the creature lowered itself to touch her.
Ryan’s snarl cut through the wind and the creature’s face came up. It was cut short as he beheld the thing exactly as horrible as Michael had described it. The gray flesh hung loosely over hollow cheeks and empty black eyes. Sagging lips did nothing to hide the fangs that were as long as a man’s ring finger and nearly reached the bottom of its chin.
Seeing the stronger being that was Gabrielle incapacitated had Michael in a frenzy. Casting his eyes wildly about, he searched the area for Becca. There was no sign on the rocks or in the woods. And to further inflame his frustration, the wind gusted again, filling his nose with aged death and taking with it any chance of finding Becca that way. A second growl erupted from his shoulder mate and Michael quit any semblance of secrecy.
“Becca!” he yelled.
Narrowing his eyes, he rose and rushed forward. There was no making this thing speak; it was unable due to the level of physical deterioration. Death was its only future. Michael and Ryan matched strides to be the deliverers of its sentence.
Two legs turned to four as Ryan changed on the fly, clothing bursting into pieces to litter the forest floor. Together they broke from the trees and hopped from rock to rock, splitting to flank the thing. Michael sunk lower, gathering himself to leap, knowing Ryan would be doing the same.
The vampire snarled as he took the head and the wolf’s teeth snapped on bone where he clamped onto the femur. The thing’s body went down, legless and headless but not destroyed. Michael had educated Ryan on the destruction of this specific creature during their pursuit. The body was torn limb from limb into tiny pieces without a word being spoken between them. No blood in the body, it was set into a dry pile of crumbling bones that Michael easily set ablaze using its clothing as tinder, burning the parts so that no amount of magic could ever reassemble it.
That done the men split, their goals no longer common. Ryan’s soft reassurances echoed in his ears as Michael began circling the perimeter, scanning the fresh white blanket covering the ground and blinding shower of large wet flakes obscuring even his vision.
“Becca,” he called again, stopping to listen for a response possibly too weak to hear over the sound of his boots crunching in the snow. He was circling back around the rock, peering into the woods when the wind dropped for a few seconds and he caught a whiff of blood. Fresh blood. Head shooting up, eyes searching, he caught one more sniff before the wind picked up again. It was enough. It was Becca’s blood and it called to him.
Long strides carried him to where she lay on the other side of a cluster of trees and heavy brush that blocked her from him until he was almost on top of her. The blood had stopped, but he saw with a stomach dropping realization that it had come from her head. She’d hit it on the rock sticking out of the ground not a foot away. White flakes were working to cover the dark stain his eyes didn’t need to tell him was there. His nose gave him all of the information he needed. She was hurt, thankfully not severely though.
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HK Savage has been a voracious reader of anything she could get her hands on going back to the second grade when she would set her alarm two hours early to read before school. Her passion for the written word has continued and flowed into writing going back nearly as far. Her books have fans in twenty countries on six continents with hopes of attracting attention on Antarctica if for no other reason than to check a box.
Currently, HK is a mother, wife and black belt in Karate as well as an avid dressage rider. Her three dogs: a Doberman she uses for therapy dog work and two ancient Doxies keep her busy when she is not writing or working or whatever else.
In addition to editing for the past ten years in advertising, HK has been an editor for several newsletters over the years; her favorite being for Heifer International where her ideas were put into effect and complimented by those on high. Currently her skills are being focused on clients in the writing world.
Paranormal is her favorite genre and science fiction because both address the possibilities we have not yet realized and the darker things we have. Her favorite premise: “what if?”
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