fannyfae: (on the trail)
[personal profile] fannyfae
Fanny didn’t call Red King right away. She had waited simply because the man was a legend and although all it took for her break through was a contact via a friend and colleague and she had gotten the very thing that had alluded her most of the day, she couldn't bring herself to push send on her Blackberry. It seemed ironic, really. She had an almost uncanny ability at times to simply ask for things and the Universe would deliver. Now if she could only get such cooperation from the great man himself.

Finally when she did dial the number, her stomach was doing flips over itself, until she heard the line pick up.

His voice was exactly as she had expected it to sound, low, with a slight accent that didn’t quite sound quite as if it was totally in place in New England. It had been two full breaths after he answered the phone before she was finally was able to speak.

“Red King,?” she asked.

“Yes?

“This is Special Investigator Frances MacKay with the New York City Police Department. I am sorry to disturb you. I wonder if I might speak to you about a case you were on a few years back.”

“Which one?” he asked, sounding amicable enough.

“The Grimm murders, actually. It seems we have a new case from last night, same m.o., six victims, a lot of legitimate occult markings and paraphernalia, but it all seems muddled. At any rate, it was all very bloody and at this moment it's very public.”

There was a long silence on the other phone. Finally she heard the flint of a cigarette lighter in the background. She was almost ready to say ‘hello’, again when he broke the silence at last.

“In case no one informed you, Special Investigator MacKay, I am retired. I have no more time to spend gallivanting after cases that the City couldn’t be bothered with solving when I was there. And to be truthful, I have no intention of doing your legwork for you, now, Ms. MacKay. And how the hell did you get my number? I’m unlisted.”

“Dr. Grissom gave it to me. He assured me that if anyone could help me in this case, you could, and he also told me to tell you ‘hello’ when I called.’ And I assure you that I intend to be doing my own legwork on the case, Commander King.”

“That’s former and retired Commander King, to you, Ms. MacKay. You tell Gilbert Grissom that if he wants to talk to me, he can call me himself and say, ‘hello” !”

“Commander, I just need a few moments of your time. I’d be happy to come see you myself. You don’t need to come here.....” she began again but he abruptly cut her off.

“Please...don’t darken my doorstep, Special Agent MacKay, I am likely to shoot you. And you tell Grissom not to bother to either!”

*click*

Later that afternoon she saw Will in the hallway and made as if her Blackberry had died. Tactuflly she asked him for Red’s address, and he cheerfully gave it to her. After thanking him profusely, she rushed to the guest office to pack up her belongings and head for home. She had a lot to do. There was the flight to book first, then pack. She had every intention to be on a plane and in Vermont by the next morning.

~*~*~*~*~

The plane touched the runway with a gentle and expected jolt. As they rolled along the runway, Fanny felt the reversal of the jet engines as the plane touched down. Buildings rolled by as they taxied toward the terminal. The two hour flight reminded her rather pointedly why it was that she hated to fly.

When the plane had stopped in front of the terminal at last, Fanny quickly unbuckled her seatbelt and stood up in front of her seat. She considered herself rtunate as she only had a carry on and had been assigned a seat on the aisle. The other passengers were a little slower but were no less anxious to deplane.

The terminal that was only sparsely populated enough that it didn’t qualify as a bona fide ghost town. Fanny didn’t need to go to the baggage claim but went straight to the car rental desk. A few moments later and the very bored and very blonde co-ed handed her the keys to a Toyota F4. She knew that she would need it. On the plane she examined the map and the GPS on her tablet that showed the way from the airport terminal to where Chief Red King lived. It was maybe an hour and a half to two hour drive through hilly, almost mountainous country. Stepping out of the terminal toward the parking area for the rental cars, she realized it must have just snowed. She glanced up at the grey, overcast sky realizing that there was probably even more snow on the way. If she wanted to make her destination, she couldn't afford to waste any time.

The drive was pleasant enough, and it wasn’t mid-afternoon when Fanny pulled up in front of the house that was the address that Dr Grissom had given to her. The dwelling was a cozy two-story New England type of cottage hewn of logs tucked in among very large Blue Spruces and deciduous trees. On the side closest to the road there was a stone chimney made of large river rock, The effect was a rather rustic looking, yet a very nice little place. Out in front of the house was a man splitting fire wood. He barely looked up as she pulled up in the driveway. Fanny found herself remembering his words over the telephone and fought off the apprehension. She got out of the SUV, pulling her black wool coat around herself a bit tighter and tucked the paisley shawl around her neck. The air was heavy with the promise of an imminent snowfall.

Former and retired Chief Red King was a distinguished looking man. He was tall, with salt and peppered gray hair and a beutiful physique. His years as a cop did not show the way that most cops did when they got close to retirement age.

“Chief Red King?” Fanny called out.

“Who wants to know?” he brought the wood maul above his head and let it fall on the piece of wood in front of him, It split in two almost on contact and lay on the ground on either side, only to be replaced by another larger, unsplit piece of wood on the stump before him.

‘I’m Special Agent Frances MacKay, “I said, “I spoke with you earlier on the phone.

“I thought I told you that I didn’t want you darkening my doorstep.” Chief King tried to scowl, but failed miserably. Instead he shook his head and gifted her with a half smile, “But I suppose that since you came all this way, it shows you’ve got tenacity. I like that in a person.” He turned back to his wood chopping., “So what is it you want to know?”


“I need your help, Chief King,” she said simply. “I’ve got more dead bodies and the only thing that comes close to this case was the one you worked on before. The M.O, is exact and if Dr. Grissom’s findings are correct, it may very well be a copycat if not the same purpetrator.”

Chief King was silent for a long while, only letting out what was more a heavy sigh as he broke a part few more logs into firewood.

“So they re-opened the case, did they?

“Yes.”

Chief King nodded and looked at her, then looked up at the sky. “Well, Special Agent MacKay, grab some of that firewood and follow me inside. It’s going to snow and I think this could bear discussion over coffee.”

Outside of this place that Chief Red King lived in now, the snow had begun to fal. It came down in crisp, round flakes the likes of which Fanny had not seen since she was a very small child in Scotland. Vermont was not a place she had ever been to before, but the stark green of the evergreens that contrasted against the ever-increasing backdrop of white and it felt almost honey to her.

The house was as cozy on the inside as it appeared to be on the outside. the house was furnished and felt warm and comfortable. But Fanny could not escape the little things that oviously made it efficient for it's sole male inhabitant. She put the kettle on, and did exactly as Red had bade her to do. By the time the kettle reached a whistle, our meal of roast beef and roasted wintervegetables and butternut soup was also ready. The fare was uncomplicated but deliciously filling. Fanny could not help but be rather impressed that a man who was a cop for so long was not relegated to frozen dinners and actually knew how to prepare meals. The dinner conversation was polite enough, with her host trying to find out more about her.

“You know, I’ve been listening to you talk,” Red said thoughtfully, “and if I were to warrant a guess, I’d say there’s a bit of Scot’s brogue that you consciously try to keep out of your speech.

“You are most astute, Chief King,” she said shaking her head with a smile. Then letting her careful guard drop, she let her brogue shine through. "Not many people ken what I’d be saying.”

“A cop always has a good ear,“ Red said with a small chuckle. “But then you weren’t always in this line of work were you?”

“No," Fanny said shaking her head and taking a long sip of her coffee. it was warm and she savoured it possesively. “I was a mild-mannered herbalist and writer, then all of a sudden NYPD said it needed an expert on the occult. So hear I am."

“I see,” he said. "Indeed. Here you are." Red looked out the window at the snow outside. "Well, I suppose you and I should take a look at the files you brought,” he said matter-of-factly. He rose from the table taking both of their plates and went into the kitchen to lay them aside in the sink. Opening a cabinet above he pulled out a bottle of scotch and two glasses and went into the living room. Slowly Fanny rose from the table and followed her host.

Fanny reached into her briefcase, retrieving a heavy file and brought it to the coffee table. Red poured a bit of scotch into each glass. Sitting down on the edge of the couch next to him, she slid the folder toward him. Red took a sip from his glass and thumbed through the text files and photographs. Occasionally he would grunt and shake his head. At last he reached the inscriptional texts for the runes that were found at the crime scene.

“I’m fluent in most forms of Gaelic, Chief,” I said, “I know Theban, Norse runic work, and others as well. But I have to admit that I’ve never seen anything like this before. It’s consistent from the cases that you worked on. I thought maybe you could give me some insight."

Red King looked at her quizzically as if she had grown two heads, “That’s because it isn’t Gaelic, Theban or anything else you have seen,Agent MacKay. It’s Elvish.”

“What?” she said incredulously, “You can’t be serious! Elves? Where on earth would you hear of something like that?”

“You’re an occult expert and you mean to tell me that you’ve never read Tolkien? 'The Hobbit', 'Lord of the Rings'? Galadriel, Lothlorien, Elvish? You are aware that Tolkien was a linguist aren’t you?”

"Yes." Fanny looked at Red, stunned.

“Are you telling me that we’re dealing with a bunch of crazed Lord of the Rings fans - servants of Sauron?" she asked. "That’s nuts! But it....it’s genius!” She was suddenly so excited she spilled the folder on the floor in front of them and went to embrace him, elated that this man whom she had sought out had indeed held the answer that she needed.

Then she realized just how close she was to him, her arms wrapped around him. Both seemed frozen in the heat of the momenent as they stared at each other.




Muse:Faelyn / Frances MacKay / Francoise de Rochefort
Fandom: Original Character
Word Count: 2129

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