Back for another chapter of Gemini! For more details on this, please check out:
By Phil Partington
“Why, because of the coven?” Anthony had his back to her, washing the blood off his hands in a sink. She thought the image was a bit ironic, if not eerie. “Not my problem,” he added. “I’ve helped you—now you need to go.”
Stacey scooted herself off the table and limped to the front window where she drew back the flowery curtain. Night’s gloom had engulfed the city—the walking paths were now lit by the glow of both security lights of day shops and welcome lights for those venues that were finally awakening for the day. Large groups were now shuffling down these paths, readying for the evening revelries that was the tradition of most nights in a large city like this. In the shadows, the intermittent transient searched for a cozy place to spend the night. Yet it wasn’t these sights that most interested her, but rather those above. The dark skies were further accented by several patches of black settling against the high-rise, light posts and road signs.
The crows were back—this time in larger droves.
“Never mind the coven,” Stacey said. “The Biters are apt to come…and soon.”
Anthony turned to look at her with furious eyes, holding up his still-wet hands that were emblazoned with her blood. Another moment and he was rushing to her side and drawing the curtain further back in a panic.
“Fuck me, White! Fuck me!” Anthony shut the curtains abruptly, stormed back to the counter to finish drying his hands and then flung his bloodied apron into the sink. He quickly replaced these wears with a brown, knitted skullcap and a plaid jacket. “Mother effin’…this way…if you want to stay alive, that is.”
In the corner of the room sat a love seat that had once likely been a lush green in color, but was now more remnant of bile. Anthony slid this aside with surprising strength, revealing a trap door leading to God knew where.
It may have been the loss of blood or the suddenness of his reactions but, for the first time in as long as Stacey could remember, she froze up. “What are you…?”
Anthony had already opened the flap and was lowering himself down. “Look again,” he grumbled. “The Biters are already here.”
And with that, he disappeared into the underground.
Stacey peered out through a slit between the curtains. At first, she thought the skies must have gotten substantially darker in the minute since she had last looked. But not a moment after, she realized it wasn’t the skies getting darker—the gathering of crows had nearly doubled and more were coming by the second.
Beneath all this, the transients shifted between the shadows like silent wraiths, and finally she saw what she had missed before.
“I’m an idiot!” Her breathing hitched as she watched. The transients were moving toward Anthony’s house—all of them. Some were even crawling on all fours…
…like animals. How the hell did I miss THAT?
She tucked Rat back into her drooping hood and hurried to the trapdoor.
“Looks like we’ll have to ask about changing you back another time,” she said, and descended into the darkness.
Word Count: 531