Pairings/Characters (this chapter): Roy/Johnny, Chet Kelly, Serina Ashby, Hank Stanley
Genres: Challenge, Holiday, Horror
Rating (this chapter): R
Warnings: Disturbing imagery, violence
General Summary: Something Wicked This Way Waits.
Chapter Summary: Something Wicked This Way Comes.
Date Of Completion: October 26, 2010
Date Of Posting: December 13, 2010
Disclaimer: I don’t own ‘em, Universal and Mark VII Limited do, more’s the pity.
Word Count: 2051
Feedback welcome and appreciated.
Author’s Notes: Written for my 2010 Station_51 Emergency! Fic/Art Halloween Challenge. :)
The entire series can be found here..
Hide your Heart,
When the Darkness comes,
Hide your Soul.
Wait for the time
To reveal their Light,
Wait for the time
For Love to fight.
Blood and bone,
Earth and stone,
Wind and fire,
This Way Waits,
This Way Comes.
Sarah Jean Stanford
"Tale Be Told"
Halloween dawned bright and clear. The men of Station 51’s A-Shift were prepared for a hectic 24 hours.
“Hey, Roy, your kids going trick-or-treating?” Chet asked as they dressed in the locker room.
“Yeah, Joanne’s gonna send me pictures.” Roy took off his shirt, hanging it neatly in his locker.
“Hey, what’s that?”
“Oh.” Roy fingered the amulet. “It was a gift from a friend.”
Chet touched it for a better look. “That’s beautiful work.” He grinned. “Shamrocks! Cool.”
Roy smiled, taking out his blue uniform shirt and shrugging it on. Chet was too busy looking at the amulet to see the uneasiness in his friend’s eyes.
Johnny bounced into the room. “Hey, Kelly, you’re bein’ awfully nosy, aren’t you?”
“Oh, stuff it, Gage.” Chet let go of the amulet. “Stop acting like a jealous boyfriend and get your ass in gear, otherwise it’ll be latrine duty for you if you’re late for roll call again.”
Johnny froze, but quickly came back with a quip, “Ha, ha, I’ll have you know that Cap was the one who stopped me on the way to the locker room.”
“Well, la-di-da.” Chet finished buttoning his shirt. “C’mon, John, better get a move on.” He whistled as he exited the room.
Johnny shook his head, Roy smiling faintly. Johnny tugged his shirt out of his pants and shucked it off, the amulet gleaming against his tanned chest.
“You hear from Serina?” Roy asked as he zipped up his pants.
Roy shook his head. “Maybe her dreams were off after all.”
They both finished dressing and headed out to the bay for roll call.
The day was busy, but the calls grew more numerous as dusk approached. Frat house pranks gone wrong, a guy with heart attack symptoms after his house was egged, a fender bender after a man got distracted by a woman wearing a dancing girl costume on her way to a party.
The moon began to rise, shining brightly as stars came out to serve as retinue. There was a curious lack of smog, the night unusually clear for Los Angeles County in 1974.
Roy sat in a lawn chair in front of the station, watching a few wispy clouds drift across the face of the moon. Traffic hummed along the highway across from the station, their lights shining in the gathering darkness. His fingers played with his amulet as he remembered fragments of last night’s dream…
Fire ate the walls and ceiling, plaster falling to the floor as flames licked at his boots. Roy forged doggedly ahead, checking rooms and marking their doors with chalk.
A flash of white caught his attention. A dress!
“Hey, Fire Department!” He thought he heard music but the roar of the fire covered it.
He ran down the hall, vision blurring as the smoke grew thick. He thought he heard Johnny shouting for him as he stumbled into the room, the amulet burning against his skin…
The blond looked up at Johnny, who was carrying a lawn chair, which he opened up and set next to his partner.
Johnny leaned forward, hands loosely clasped between his knees. “Are you sure you’re all right?”
Roy sighed. “No.”
Johnny wanted to kiss him but instead settled for squeezing his knee. “Keep the faith, baby.”
Roy chuckled. “Okay, soul brother.”
Suddenly the klaxons sounded, and Sam Lanier’s calm voice intoned, “Station 51, Engine 116, Ladder 10, structure fire, 1616 Culpepper Road, 1-6-1-6 Culpepper, cross-street Hyancinth, time out, 20:53.”
Johnny and Roy raced to the squad while their crewmates hurried to Big Red. Sirens blaring, the two vehicles exited Station 51.
Serina Ashby jolted awake. She had fallen asleep on the couch while waiting to go to her coven meeting. Dressed in a flowing black dress, her silver amulet glittered in the moonlight. Blue mascara highlighted her wide green eyes, terror lurking behind them. Heart pounding, she grabbed the phone, pausing when she heard the call on the scanner that Joe had given her.
“No,” she moaned.
Slamming the phone down, she grabbed her black cloak and hurried out into the night, long, black hair and dress blowing in the wind.
The moon hung low, its rays shining silver-white as it glittered like jewels.
The men pulled up to the Carlton Arms Apartments, the fire already fully involved. Hank directed his men, and Roy and Johnny hurried inside in full gear, three people unaccounted for.
They forged ahead through the smoke on the first floor, the furniture in the lobby burning as flames danced in the prisms of the chandelier. Wallpaper curled away from the walls, the edges charred black.
Roy motioned upstairs, and Johnny nodded.
Johnny followed Roy up the stairs, the two of them checking the apartments, marking ‘X’ on the doors He could hear the roar of the fire below, and Johnny knew that time was short.
He quickly searched the next apartment. They were looking for a maintenance man, an elderly woman and teenage boy. The apartments of all three were empty.
“Hey, anybody here?” He bit his lip, hoping that they were out of the building, though he it was frustrating to be sent on a wild goose chase.
Johnny quickly opened closets, looked under beds, and searched behind the living room couch.
He hurried to the next apartment, Roy further down the hall. An explosion downstairs rocked the floor. Johnny sped up his pace.
Suddenly he heard the strains of hauntingly-beautiful music, his heart breaking as tears began to run down his face.
He froze as he recognized it as Irish music. Fear rose up and swamped him like a tidal wave. “Roy!” he screamed as he ran out of the apartment, the amulet burning against his skin…
Serina parked her car and hurried out, looking like a wild wraith in black. She ran over to Hank.
“Cap! You’ve got to get Roy and Johnny out of there! There’s great evil in that building!”
Roy quickly checked the apartments, glancing back to see Johnny disappear into one. A flicker of movement in his peripheral vision caught his attention. He saw the swirl of white silk.
“Hey! Come back! We have to get out of here!”
A face peeked out from the apartment at the end of the hall, blond pigtails framing a pale, oval face.
“Little girl! Come on, honey, we have to get out of here!”
Roy hurried after the girl, music drifting over the sound of the fire. His amulet burned and he reached into his turnout coat, the metal warm in his hand. He could hear the cry of an eagle.
The little girl turned, her dark eyes like two lumps of coal in her porcelain face.
They’re lifeless eyes.
Roy shivered. Fragments of his dreams and the stories Joe and Serina had told the men of Station 51 swirled in his head, his body beginning to shake. He could smell graveyard dust.
Darkness is coming.
The little girl grinned. Her voice sounded hollow as it echoed off the walls. “Welcome back to the Auld Sod, Royal James DeSoto.”
Suddenly her pretty face morphed into a hideous, demonic horror, eyes blazing and a maw with sharp teeth shocking Roy, who stumbled back as he clutched the amulet, a wild urge to hold it out like a crucifix against a vampire. He could feel a flashover building up.
Oh, god, I’m sorry, Johnny!
“What are you talking about, Serina?” asked Hank. He grabbed her arm.
“My dreams…Cap, I’m not crazy! This address is the site for those strange Halloween fires I told you about! You’ve got to order Roy and Johnny out of there before it’s too…!”
An explosion rocked the building, the second-floor windows breaking as flames shot out, the shards of glass glittering from the flames as they rained down on the street.
“Goddess, no,” Serina moaned.
Terror suffused Johnny’s bones. Screaming Roy’s name, he ran to the end of the hall.
He found Roy backing up, his body shaking. Johnny grabbed his arm. “Roy, let’s go…” Shock cut off any further words.
Horror worked over him as he stared at the apparition in front of them. What was that...thing? He could feel Roy trembling under his hand. Irish music poured over them, loud and lilting.
The demon lunged at Roy, who desperately tried to fend it off, pushing Johnny behind him. Johnny’s blood ran cold as Roy screamed, the demon’s claws tearing at his skin right through his turnout coat. Fangs gleamed in the moonlight streaming in through the window as it laughed a terrible laugh, plunging for Roy’s throat.
Johnny knocked the thing away, its dead eyes fixing on him as it hissed its rage. It spoke with a tone that sounded like dry paper rustling. “You shouldn’t have gotten into the way, Indian. Your bones know what I am.”
Johnny knew that what it said was true but grabbed Roy, the blond going into shock. “Get away from him!” Johnny screamed.
The quiet menace in that voice terrified Johnny worse than a shouted declaration. The demon advanced and Johnny fumbled inside his turnout, thrusting out his amulet. The emerald chips glittered in the moonlight.
The demon made a sound like rumbling cement. “Foolish Indian! Do you think that you can ward me off with trinkets? You…”
A shadow passed over Johnny’s head and he looked up, heart trembling. Eyes widening, he followed the beautiful golden eagle as it flew into the room.
The eagle attacked the thing, terrible shrieks scraping down Johnny’s spine. Roy was still in shock.
Johnny desperately dragged his partner, the inhuman cries from the demon causing his body to shake. He could feel the imminent flashover, the stories about the firefighters of generations past urging him to go faster with Roy.
They stumbled down the hall, shaking legs carrying them down the stairs and propelling them out of the building as explosions rocked the second floor.
Johnny and Roy were flung through the air, Johnny barely holding onto his partner, both of them hitting the pavement hard, barely missing the squad
Johnny grunted, pain shooting up his right knee. He quickly checked Roy, grimacing at the torn flesh. He would have to treat these right away.
His partner couldn’t stop shaking. His eyes were glassy and he was clutching his amulet like a lifeline.
“It’s all right now, Roy. You’re safe, I promise.” Johnny wrapped his arms around Roy, not caring who saw, suddenly needing this contact, and sensing that Roy needed the same even before treatment. At least they were shielded by their squad.
Roy looked at him, lashes quivering with tears. “She…she…”
“I know” Johnny kissed his lover’s temple, trying to stop his own shaking.
Hank and Serina ran up to them, the latter crying, “Are you all right?”
Hank blanched as he saw Roy’s chest. Serina looked at Roy’s marble-white face.
“He saw her.” At Johnny’s nod, she touched her amulet. “The demon targeted Irish firefighters. Even if you weren’t purely Irish, it didn’t matter. She could have targeted a pureblood like Chet or even you, Johnny, with part of your heritage being from the Auld Sod, but the demon targeted Roy.”
“Is it gone?” Hank asked, amazed at the turn of events.
Suddenly, a loud noise assaulted their ears as the second floor completely collapsed with a wrenching groan, crashing down to the basement. Johnny could swear that he heard an inhuman shriek.
Serina shivered as she said, “I hope so.”