The clock chimed seven times. Seven o'clock. I thought, and I'm still here. Just then my phone buzzed in my pocket. A text from Axel read;
He found her.
I nearly dropped the phone. She's alive?! I shoved the phone into back into my pants and sprinted to the stairs. Elevators take too long, but running didn't.
The cool autumn air would've stung my face if I were human...like Vinnie. I reached the sidewalk where Axel and Kaya stood.
"Is it true?! Is she alive? Where is she?" My question jumped out of my mouth all at once.
"Calm down Reece, we don't know if she's still there." Axel said. He pulled a thick piece of paper out of his vest pocket and unfolded it. It was a map of Bridgeport.
I took it from him and examined it.
"See the red area?" Axel asked. My eyes quickly found the red circle, drawn on with red marker.
"Yeah." I looked up at him.
"Blu said she was somewhere in that area the morning after she disappeared." He said, grinning.
"So let's go." I said, tucking the map into my pocket. "You can go home Kaya."
Axel stiffened and Kaya narrowed her coffee-colored eyes.
"Excuse me?" She crossed her arms.
"Axel and I got this." I said.
"No! I have known Vinnie for most of her life. And I'll be damned if you stop me from coming!" She yelled.
"We're just gonna have to watch out for you the whole time." I argued. She raised her hand to slap me but Axel put his hand on her shoulder.
"Look man, she may be a girl," He said, Kaya snorted. "And a human, but she can take care of herself."
"Oh really? You can protect yourself from a pair of psychotic vampires?" I growled through my teeth.
"I'm the only daughter out of seven kids! You honestly think I'm that weak? My father's family has been vampire hunters for over a hundred years!" She snapped.
"Fine she's coming. Let's just get going." I rolled my eyes.
"This must be it." Axel whispered. A house stood before us. It was at least a few decades old and it was falling apart. The property itself was full of junk and weeds.
"Do you smell that?!" A screech from inside startled us.
"It's human blood you idiot!" I stiffened. Axel grabbed my arm. "Fresh lovely blood."
"No duh! There's blood everywhere!"
"I mean living! I hear it's heart." Axel and I both stared at Kaya. Fear filled her eyes.
"I'll go check it out." The three of us shared a panicked look as a gunshot went off.
"Hide!" Kaya cried.
We headed behind the fence and into the weeds.
Kaya slid into the water to hide her scent as Axel held himself against a bunch of crates. I threw myself on the ground.
Maria raced right by us, wearing the same clothes that she had been wearing the night Vinnie went missing. Rage filled me and I started to get up.
"Reece if you get up and chase her you put all of us in jeopardy. Including Vinnie!" Kaya hissed as quietly as possibly. I sunk back into the weeds. As soon as we were sure she had left, Axel and I pulled Kaya from the water. We darted across the pathway to the other set of fencing.
"I think it's clear." Kaya murmured.
"You sure?" I whispered.
"Is Vinnie alive?" She spat. The three of us crept towards the door and entered the house.
Directly to my left was a door, old and locked.
Everything was crumbling and dirty.
Kaya and Axel headed over to investigate the other half of the main floor and I went to the locked room. I jiggled the lock, nearly breaking it off.
"Damn it." I muttered pushing on the door.
I threw a hard punch and the door swung open. The room was dimly lit, had dirty stone walls and was empty. My eyes scanned the room before zeroing in on the corner. The floor and wall was stained with blood. I sniffed it and was overwhelmed with Vinnie's scent as well as the incredibly strong scent of fear.
She was here! I thought, looking around for any trace of her. No sign of struggle. I left the room, shutting the door tightly behind me.
I looked down the spiral staircase. Little drops of crimson were visible on some of the steps. I threw myself onto the railing and slid down.
I followed the trail until it stopped, hitting a stone floor.
My stomach lurched. My heart stopped.
I couldn't breathe.
Vinnie's broken and bloodied body lay on the stone floor inside a cell. The door was wide open, obviously Maria left in a hurry. I raced over, tears running down my face at lightning speed.
"Vinnie oh my God!" I cried, shaking her gently. Thunder broke the silence, and rain began to downpour.
I pulled her into my arms.
"Vinnie?" I whispered, holding her check. I pulled my hand away from her, it was wet with blood. The stones beneath me were stained dark crimson as well. My eyes traveled to her side, a her dress was dark red. I pulled the fabric slightly to the side. A bullet. She had been shot.
I held her closer, sobbing.
"I'm so sorry! Please don't leave me. I've only just found you." Thunder shook the house again. I heard a small beat in her chest. I slid my arms under her legs and lifted her off the ground.
"You're gonna be okay Vin." I headed up the stairs. Kaya and Axel stood in the living room.
"Guys." My voice cracked and they turned to face me. Kaya gasped.
"Is she...." Axel whispered, his lip quivering.
"I-I think she's alive." I replied.
"Let's-" Axel's words were cut off by the bang of a gun and a bullet zipping between their heads. We were frozen for half a second for running outside. Axel grabbed Kaya's hand and pulled her along with him.
Rain pelted us as we ran, lightning split the dark sky overhead.
"Look there's Blu!" Axel shouted. I squinted through the rain to see a white truck.
Blu jumped into the driver seat as Axel helped me put Vinnie is the back.
"You couldn't have gotten a van?" I cried over the heavy downpour, water flying off my lips as I spoke.
"Just get in the God damn truck!" Blu shot back. Axel hopped into the other front seat.
Kaya and I shared a look before gazing into the truck.
"Get! IN!" Axel screamed. Kaya threw herself into the vehicle. I looked back at the house before getting the back. The moment I was sitting down, Blu took off down the road. Kaya put her hand on mine and I looked up at her.
"She's gonna be okay."
I pointed to her cheek.
"It's nothing, the bullet barely grazed my cheek." Kaya said. I tore off a piece of fabric from my shirt.
"Here, for the," I swallowed hard. "blood."
"Oh uh sorry." She quickly pressed it against her face.
The trip became quiet. Kaya had pulled out her phone and sent a text to Lauri telling her to get to my apartment as soon as possible. I kept glancing down at Vinnie every so often.
I let out a sigh of relief as Bridgeport's city lights came into view. The rain was still going strong, Kaya pulled her sweatshirt closer around herself.
We passed the school and I felt a horrible surge of guilt. The first place I had ever talked to her. Maybe if I had kept I closer eye on her, none of this would have happened.
The rain stopped as we pulled into my building's parking area. Was that a good sign?
Or a bad one?