Sunday, December 12, 2010


Salem was nice this time of year. Even if the infamous trials had been held on its namesake on the opposite coast, the city held its own share of corruption and darkness. Herein one found thieves and murderers, mobsters and rapists, lawyers and car salesmen.

Michael fully intended to outdo them all.

Having left his car in a nearby lot, he wandered the dimming streets in search of a target. His options were many, from the young couples lost in each other's smiles to the crazies begging for their bread. In the end, though, Michael wasn't satisfied with the small game. He wanted a real target.

Six feet tall before her heels and lugging a large briefcase, the woman seemed more than capable of making any normal assailant think twice. Michael wasn't a normal assailant. He reached out carefully with his mind, and found the pain was much less noticeable this far north.

For now, whispered Gabriel's voice at the back of his mind.

Shaking his head, Michael nudged the woman towards an alley. Having lived in the city all her life, her every instinct fought him. Michael pressed harder. The woman stumbled and suddenly turned right. Michael followed her into the tiny corridor.

In the shadow, Michael was nearly invisible. There was no glint of cold steel in his hands. He hadn't had a hunt in a long time. He wasn't going to do it the easy way. Surrendering his hold on the victim's mind, he tapped her on the shoulder.

She turned around and saw no one there. Then, realizing where she was, she hurried back to the main street and hailed a taxi home.

Back at his car, Michael grimaced, disgusted with himself.

"Damn it, Gabe."

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