The banging on the door was louder than it had been before. Was it because the blood was beginning to leak into the hallway? She hadn’t thought it would move the way it did. Now she didn’t know what to do. Nothing had gone the way she’d expected today.

This morning had been lovely. The rain had come and killed the heat. Perhaps not the best choice of words. Marcelina had not even minded flying in the rain. Dosia hated it so she’d been able to go alone.

Yes, the day had started out wonderfully.

Now she stood in a tiny office with a growing pool of blood at her feet. And a corpse. Well, one and a half corpses. She thought Liv was still alive, but was afraid to get close. The woman was vicious. Randolph was most definitely dead and she did not feel bad.



Marcelina stepped over Randolph and perched on the edge of the desk. It let her avoid getting blood on her boots. Liv had curled up against Randolph and didn’t seem to mind the way their blood mingled. Or the way Randolph smelled as he lay dead. Marcelina had smelled death before and this was not the same. Perhaps this is what snakes smelled like when dead?

“How did you do it?”

“Not why?”

“I know why. I told him you knew. I said we should send you away. Or eliminate you.”

“I’m smart enough to figure out a way.”

“And there was the knife.”

“Yes. And there was the knife.”

“He helped you.”

“No. It was only me.”

“It doesn’t matter.”

“I’m sorry.” She was sorry. Randolph and Liz had saved her. They’d given her a place. Of course, it was all at his behest. Still, they’d been kind and helped her through her new circumstance. More importantly, they’d helped Jory.

“Are you? That’s a weakness you need to get over.”

“I’ll give myself up.” The banging on the door rattled the wood. “Once you’re dead.”

“Then finish me.”

“I can’t.” There was some shame in the admission. Marcelina thought that good. It meant maybe she was still good. At least a little.

“Another weakness you need to get over.”

The door splintered and three people rushed in with guns drawn.

Liv laughed, a wet sound that made Marcelina shiver. Well, she likely was pleased her last act upset someone. The men with guns stared at the room before they lowered their weapons.

“Glad that’s over.”

They left.

Marcelina, not sure what to do now, left as well. She went back to her apartment where Jory and Dosia waited for her. No one knocked on their door for several days.