Previous parts are here
Warning - character death, bad language, violence!
By Marcus L. Rowland
5: Dade County, Miami, Florida
Next time, Kenny vows, he’ll take the Quickening somewhere that has good transport facilities. He’s had to abandon the body and sword in a parking lot at the ass end of nowhere, and it looks like there won’t be a bus for at least an hour. To make matters worse, the police are already arriving, a stream of cars with lights blazing; all of them ignoring the cute kid kicking a can down the road away from the action.
As the fifth car passes he senses a pre-Immortal, and wonders if it’s worth taking the risk of going back to get a closer look. There isn’t much of the power he craves in such a Quickening, but pre-Immortals are usually low-hanging fruit, unwary and easy to kill. It’s a dilemma; he solves it by noting the precinct ID on some of the cars. He can use that to track down his prey at leisure.
Six days later Kenny finally identifies his target, in a group of people talking in the precinct parking lot. Some sort of crime scene investigator, he doesn’t care about the details beyond that. Until he gets a little closer, and realises that the faint buzz of pre-Immortality has deepened to the slightly stronger pulse of a shiny new Quickening. Somehow his target’s been killed, recovered, and come back to work. He’s driving a new car, a shiny Kia, and from snatches of conversation he overhears Kenny learns he’s been in a car crash; maybe the idiot doesn’t even realise he’s died, he isn’t acting oddly. Car crashes can be like that, Kenny guesses; if you die on the road and wake in the wreck before anyone pulls you out, it must be easy to assume that you were miraculously lucky. He makes a mental note that the new guy must recover from death pretty quickly. New guy touches his head a couple of times – it’s probably aching from Kenny’s presence – but doesn’t know enough to look for someone coming to kill him. Eventually he puts on dark glasses and drives off.
The Quickening of a full Immortal is a lot more attractive, but Kenny’s big problem now is that he doesn’t have a sword; usually he gets friendly with his victims and kills them with their own weapons, but new guy is so green he’s unarmed. That ought to make killing him easier, not harder, except that new guy is big and might be tough. The trick, then, is to find a way to kill him fast, and worry about taking his head once he’s down. For that something like a kitchen knife or a cleaver will work nearly as well as a sword; even that’s something that an apparent ten-year-old living on the streets can’t easily get hold of, but Kenny slips in the kitchen door of a sushi bar and manages to score a nice Ginsu knife, small enough to slip into his sleeve, large enough to kill, without being spotted.
Next day the car’s parked at the precinct again, unlocked – who’s going to risk stealing a car from the police – and Kenny sneaks in, taking care to avoid being seen by the security cameras, and hides in the back. There’s plenty of junk back there, tripods and equipment cases, so it’s easy to stay out of sight.
Time passes, and Kenny is already really bored and anxious to make the kill when new guy finally comes back and drives out of the lot. Kenny gives it a couple of minutes, to get well clear of the precinct, then surges to his feet and puts the knife to new guy’s throat and shouts “Stop the car, motherfucker!”
New guy looks at him a little surprised, says “I was expecting a midget,” and floors the gas pedal instead of the brake. The car accelerates fast, and Kenny has to hold on tight, especially when new guy starts to swerve from side to side. New guy is fast; somewhere along the way he grabs Kenny’s wrist and twists it until he’s forced to drop the knife, then alternates brakes and accelerator until Kenny is thrown to the floor. He’s still trying to stop puking and disentangle himself from the junk on the floor when the car stops again. New guy grabs him and has his hands cuffed behind his back before Kenny can recover, then gets on the radio and calls it in.
“You all right, Lieutenant Caine?” asks the first cop to arrive.
“Fine,” says Caine. He picks up the microphone again and says “Let Morgan know that he was right about the blood spatter showing the perp as a small person. I wasn’t expecting a kid though.”
“Little punks get younger every year,” says the cop.
“What I want to know,” says Caine, taking off his sunglasses, “is how I’m going to get this kid’s puke out of the carpet. I’ve had this car less than a week.”
Kenny knows that sooner or later he’ll get a chance to escape. He’s still telling himself that four hours later when they have him in a holding cell at the precinct, waiting for someone from Juvenile Hall to arrive so that they can start questioning him.
“I don’t normally believe in basing decisions on my instincts,” says the stranger who’s standing outside the cell, “because I would find it really hard to dispose of that many bodies.”
Kenny looks at him. His badge ID’s him as D. Morgan, and his eyes... well, Kenny sees eyes like that when he looks in the mirror, when he isn’t trying to pretend to be a normal kid.
“You can’t just kill random people,” says Morgan. “You have to target the ones that won’t be missed. Personally I prefer to be much more selective. Do you think you have that much self-control?”
Kenny tries to think fast. “Maybe.”
“Think you can learn?”
“Good thing I don’t like Caine. Here…” He tosses a small key through the bars. “Keep this hidden, when they take you to the van for juvenile hall you’ll be out in the open. Use the handcuff key then if you can get free, head south. I’ll be in a brown Subaru parked two blocks away. I need to go; the cameras will be back on line in a minute.” He hurries off, leaving Kenny alone with his thoughts and a small steel key.
It goes the way Morgan said. Kenny manages to keep the key hidden, gets out of the cuffs half-way to the bus, and runs as fast as he can, dodging clumsy cops and wriggling through gaps that are too small for an adult. Amazingly nobody takes a shot at him, not that it would stop him. Once he’s out he heads north of course; whatever game Morgan is playing, Kenny wants no part of it. He makes it nearly a block before the door of a black Toyota swings open in front of him, too fast for him to dodge, and Morgan sticks a hypodermic into his neck and drags him into the car.
“Normally I like kids,” says Dexter Morgan, “But I’m not an idiot.”
Kenny struggles, trying to move, slowly realising that he’s naked, gagged, and saran-wrapped to a table. There are six photographs hanging where he can see them, he recognizes some of his recent kills.
“An assistant DA called Miguel Prado taught me how to use an escape to get a prisoner where I want him. I’d thank him… if I hadn’t had to kill him.” He moves to where Kenny can see him clearly, a long sharp knife in his hand. “Your prints have been linked to five other murders over the last three years. How old were you when you killed your first man? Seven? Eight?”
Morgan really has no idea who he’s dealing with, nor that Kenny’s killed more than a thousand in the last eight hundred years, but that doesn’t really help right now.
“I was hoping to help you, maybe get you started on a road that might let you lead a more normal life, but I can see it’s not going to happen. You’re too far gone. All I can do is make sure that you can’t kill anyone else.” He studies Kenny’s eyes for a second, then says “anything to add?” and pulls the gag from Kenny’s mouth.
“You sick fuck, when I get free I’ll cut your mphhhh…” Dexter puts the gag back in his mouth.
“Sorry kid. Let’s make this fast.” He pushes the knife into Kenny’s heart. Kenny’s last thought is that he’s going to come back from whatever shallow grave Morgan buries him in and give him a long lingering death.
Dexter knows he has to work fast, but he’s always thorough. He’s made his third cut in the body when he notices the first is closing. It freaks him out a little, but he’s been tired for days, the baby is teething again, and it’s probably just another hallucination. When he cuts off the kid’s head, and bolts of lightning throw him across the room, he’s a lot more worried. But eventually the lightning stops, the flames flicker out, and he gets on with his work and has the kid neatly packaged for burial at sea within twenty minutes. He’s never able to explain it, of course, but he doesn’t have to. The little creep is reduced to a Hefty bag of body parts and a drop of blood on a slide, and that’s the way he likes it.
Three years later Horatio Caine is dead again; once someone tells him about Immortals and the Game, he starts to treat them all as hostile. Methos reluctantly takes his head, the idiot just wouldn’t leave well enough alone. By then Kenny is a bagful of putrescent flesh and bone, half-way to Cuba.
Nobody ever knows what Dexter did. Even if he’s caught, there’s some stories he’ll never want to tell. After all, he wouldn’t want anyone to think he was crazy…
Crossover with CSI: Miami and Dexter.
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