Tag Archives: Moonrise

Moonrise CH17 – Son of a Glitch


“Officer Patterson, I need you to take the Miles Jensen file with you and the tapes from the CCTV before they’re delivered to the precinct.”

Massey’s words hammered in Betty’s head as she drove her cruiser after the black FBI Ford. She didn’t want to seem suspicious, more like an escort to her superior officers, so she kept a respectful distance, sirens off. Once they hit the main lane, Betty was going to swerve her vehicle and take a shortcut, avoiding the slow and cumbersome traffic, fast forwarding before the feds and arriving first at the precinct. That way she was going to receive the evidence on instructions by the head detective and the file would be out of FBI’s reach.

On a red light, a procession of bikers rounded Betty’s cruiser, their Harleys booming, and revving. They made a wall to Bettys left and right, and when the light hit green, they funneled in front of her, a pack of chrome, black and steel beasts glimmering in the sun. For a moment Betty was cut off from the black Ford. “Really nice timing boys,” Betty mumbled to herself. She only saw its taillights as the car was turning right following her intended shortcut. Betty swore under her breath and put the car in gear.

When she arrived at the parking lot, the same FBI Ford had already parked. She pulled on her spot and from the glove compartment took out her blue latex gloves, neatly folded them and hid them in her pocket. Then she took to a sprint.

Officer Betty Patterson pushed through the glass doors of West Police Precinct. Everyone was busy frowning and muttering about the gruesome deaths at Madison Park. Hardly any of the other officers paid her any mind, a happening she was thankful for right now. Betty quickly climbed the steps to the second floor where Massey’s glass windowed office was located.

The FBI agents were already here, more of them than she had anticipated. Betty didn’t know why she expected different; it was evident they would have sent numbers beforehand. She had to come up with a plan B. As she paced through the precinct she saw they had already started collecting the data and evidence from the Miles Jensen case. Betty saw some of their agents refilling their cups of coffee while supervising the “raid.” She too disliked the idea of giving the case over to the feds as much as everybody else and Massey had seemed jumpy when he had sent her to secure the case file and the tapes. Betty stopped dead in her tracks, her adrenaline subsiding. She had snapped to the task, but she was about to steal sensitive and vital information concerning the case and on top of that sneak it under the feds’ noses. If anyone were to find out what she was about to do, Betty’s days on the force would be over. But, her head detective had told her it was important to do so, and Betty believed him. She had never had any reason to doubt him, so she carried on with her mission trusting Massey’s instinct.

When she neared his office, she cursed under her breath again. The shades pulled up she could see that there were already FBI agents inside of it. Betty put a shoulder to one of the supporting columns and peeked. A short woman was looking through Massey’s computer; a task Betty deemed odd. Another one was filling boxes with manila folders all bearing the sigil of the precinct. The FBI had wanted just the data on the crime from the morning, which was scarce at the moment so why were they going through the head detective’s personal things? Suddenly Massey’s worrying tone from earlier frightened Betty as well.
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Moonrise CH18 – Stealth


[1015 Words – Inspiration Monday]Betty fumbled for a good lie to tell Felix – something that wouldn’t put Massey in the spotlight, but the Muse’s revenge was complete. The lie, a little white lie, slipped out of her mouth with shocking ease. Betty lowered her voice and stepped toward Felix. “I mixed up some of the evidence earlier. I screwed up really bad, Felix.”

Felix sighed. “I’m sure that if you explain your error to the lead FBI agent, they won’t file any formal charges on you.”

“The bag has my name on it, Felix. You saw how the feds came in and basically chased everyone away. I can lose my badge here. Come on, Felix, all I need is two minutes inside the office. Two minutes. I’ll be in your debt.”

Betty reached for Felix’s hand and gave his fingers a gentle squeeze. She knew he liked her, or at least he had since he asked her out a couple of times in the past few months. Their eyes had locked for a few moments before Felix’s shoulders slumped and Betty knew she had him.

“Alright. Make yourself busy and wait for my signal.”

Betty watched him stride off with his back straight, and his blond hair pristinely combed. On his way, he passed near his desk and left the evidence bags with the tapes there, something Betty was thankful for. She made a mental note to swipe those. Her brows knitted together when she saw Felix hurrying off to the coffee machine and filling two cups to near overflowing. Then Betty understood what he was about to do. She moved closer to her desk and stood over it feigning work while listening and watching out of the corner of her eye.

Felix gestured to the pair of FBI agents inside Massey’s office. He showed them the hot beverage and exchanged his pleasantries with them when they came out.

“I figured you might need some refreshments, Agents,” Felix said.

“Thank you, Officer Wallas was it? We are expecting the footage from the CCTV. We were told you were bringing them to us.”

“Ah, yes, well it’ll be just a few minutes. Our specialist Ray is trying to round up all the other footage you also requested. Our archive is a bit messy.”

The male agent had deep-set eyes that were pale and inexpressive and they watched Felix without blinking.

“This case has a priority marker on it Officer Wallas, make sure the tapes are here first. We can pick up the rest later.”

“Yes, sir I’ll make sure they are delivered immediately. Oh, let me first give you your coffees.”

Just as Felix was passing out the cups, Betty saw how his fingers slipped not accidentally, and the cup flew at the male agent, the hot substance splashing him square across the chest, soaking his white shirt in deep brown. The agent shrieked in surprise and pain, and Felix went on to apologize and push the agent towards the restroom while the female agent strode after them, worried for her partner who wailed and cursed until they were out of sight.
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Moonrise CH19 – Motivation


[1140 Words – Inspiration Monday, #3WW, Sunday Scribblings 2] A trembling blond woman pounded her palms against the rear window of the limousine. She couldn’t see Doctor Globe through the tinted windows, but her bulging, teary eyes stared at him nonetheless. Globe studied her for some time. She was one of the parents who were unfortunate to have lost their children to the “Madison Butcher.” Globe imagined she blamed herself for letting her little boy or girl, he couldn’t remember which, out that day in the care of some friend of hers. Now her child was gone, and she was demanding of the good doctor with those sorrowful eyes that he return her child through some magic medicinal trick. Globe got bored of her deaf mumbles, her voice inaudible in the general cacophony surrounding his car. A member of the facility security team pulled her away and returned her to the throng of people. The undulating masses as Globe came to think of them. The mixture of protest and reporter flocks trying to steal just one more word or career-making sound bite from him was beginning to grate on his nerves. Globe urged the driver to move.

The driver gave the horn a firm press; once, twice, thrice, and then faced Globe in the rearview mirror. He muttered something about human sludge under his breath. The driver did his best to conceal the heated insult of his fellow man. “I can’t sir. There are people in front of the car. They won’t move.”

Globe swirled the ice cubes in his scotch with anxious exasperation. He stared at the almost transparent peaks above the line of fine alcohol. He appreciated that like the iceberg that sunk the Titanic, most of the action was below the surface. He came to think of his new organization in the same way – mostly under the surface. Sure, he was the very public face of it, but only a select few knew what was actually going on. There were Middle East terrorist groups that were so difficult to root out because they employed the same level of autonomy. There was a vague master plan, but each cell was free to carry out their own interpretation of those grand plans. They were insulated from each other and from him. Globe set his glass on the polished wooden bar and wiped the condensation his fingers had gathered from the glass on a white cloth towel. He sighed at the bodies pressed against the glass.

“Well make them move, Jarvis. I don’t have all day.” Besides they’re leaving smudges on my car, he wanted to add but bit his tongue. It was never a wise idea to show that much indifference and douchebaggery all at once and in front of the more common people in his employ. Not that it made much difference, they were easily replaceable, but he had a kinder, gentler façade to maintain. Jarvis wasn’t even the driver’s name. Globe called each driver by the generic name. Although the current Jarvis had held the position the longest, Globe wasn’t about to snub his nose at the tradition.

“They will calm down Doctor Globe.” Jarvis glanced nervously at Globe in the rearview mirror. His deliberate swallow was audible in the tight confines of the car. Jarvis glanced at Globe’s traveling companion before continuing, “As soon as Miles Jensen is behind bars for life they will thank you for proving him guilty.”

With a small smile, his companion finished the thought: “The good people of this city will support you in your campaign. They believe in you just as I do.”
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Moonrise CH20 – Insignificant Other


[1078 words – Inspiration Monday, #3WW, Sunday Scribblings 2]It took longer than was needed for Doctor Globe’s motorcade to reach its destination. Globe sighed more than once as his driver stopped to allow the ambulances to catch up to the limousine. Onlookers were kept at bay from the compound with the double fence and razor wire, but each gap between vehicles allowed the crowd to flow back across the gate. Globe’s men corralled the people away from the road and allowed the ambulances to follow.

Once inside the lab, Globe again had to wait. The bodies had to be prepped before entering the impromptu “morgue” his team built a few days before securing the “bodies.” Despite the sterile whiteness of the small tent hidden in the basement space next to his lab, the Madison Park Massacre victims emanated a pale blue light that seemed to shine brighter against the stark material surrounding them. Everywhere the blue light touched, coldness permeated. The tent swam in it. Globe shivered when he entered, but he regarded the quaking as a pleasant feeling, and not the icy fingers that many of his underlings referred to it as. They didn’t know that the frigidity meant that Silas and Bree’s powers had done their magic.

A short man in a lab coat and a thin mustache approached Globe. Other than the facial hair from a bygone era, there was nothing special about the little man. He extended his hand, and Globe reluctantly shook it.

“Doctor Lee,” Globe intoned, keeping up appearances.

“Doctor Globe.”

Globe rubbed his fingers together after Lee released them. He used the same hand to wave at the rows of white cots arranged in rows. “How are our patients?”

“Stable. All their vitals are in the green. There are no indications of them waking up anytime soon. We’ll be carefully monitoring the-” Lee struggled for the right word, “-coma, but if any need appears to reassure the effect…”

“I’ll take care of that.” Globe turned his attention away from the tiny bodies on the cots and scrutinized Doctor Lee. “Your job, Doctor, is to make sure these people remain asleep.”

Doctor Lee shrunk from Globe’s jarring gaze but rallied and then cleared his throat. “I have to wonder Doctor Globe, how long before the relatives and parents begin asking questions. They will want the bodies back to bury, and we surely can’t release the subjects, nor deny them.”

Globe crossed his arms over his chest. “I can postpone as many times as I please. I have promised results, but never said anything about my timetable. As long as these subjects here are believed to be deceased, then there is no immediate hurry. The children are to be tested regularly. I’m curious to see how Bree’s power affects them after prolonged exposure. Make sure we understand how to harness her power in an efficient manner.” Globe moved toward Lee, towering over him. “I don’t want any mistakes, Doctor.

The honorific didn’t hold the respect that was usually reserved for bearers of the title, but if Lee took offense, he had the sense to conceal it. The shorter man nodded, and replied, “The samples will be small at first. The small sample size will lead to insufficient data to be collected, but…”
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Moonrise CH21 – Crimson Reverie


[1012 words – Inspiration Monday, #3WW, The Writing Reader]Detective Massey hit the brakes on his patrol car two blocks before his house.

“Why we stoppin’ here?” Joaquin asked frowning in clear confusion. We need to be doin’ things, he thought.

Massey squinted his eyes when he checked the rear-view mirror. He seemed to take in the street behind them, then he sighed. “I need you to kindly do me a favor.” His eyes met Joaquin’s via the reflective glass.

Joaquin raised his eyebrows.

“An officer from the precinct, Betty Patterson will come by the house soon.”

Joaquin allowed a lighthearted grin. “You playa! I knew you wasn’t all just rules and shit.”

Massey rolled his eyes. “It’s not like that.” He sighed, the tiring events of the last few days evident on his face. “I need you to stay put there and take the file she gives you. Then I need you to take it straight to Andy.”

Joaquin let his eyes lose focus for a moment while Massey’s words sunk in.

Massey turned in his seat, his seatbelt digging into his tense shoulder. “Can you do that for me?” He allowed his worry into his words trapping Joaquin in a place where he couldn’t do wrong. Joaquin flinched at the nearness and intensity filling the eyes of the old detective.

“What file?” Joaquin asked in a melodramatic raspy voice.

“The Miles Jensen case.”

Joaquin mouthed, “Oh shit,” turned, and stared out the window.

Joaquin could hear Massey lick his dry lips. “I need you on this Joaquin. I have somewhere else to be,” Massey replied.

Joaquin twisted in the seat. “Lookin’ for Anne, right?” He shrugged and pursed his lips. “I can help.”

Massey turned to him. “You’ll help by doing this. It’s extremely important that Andy gets the file today. This is our only leverage against Globe.”

Joaquin thought on it, puckering his lips. He could see sweat beads forming on Massey’s forehead. He felt the way Massey’s eyes didn’t blink as they bore into him. The last part of Massey’s argument was like a punch to the gut. Joaquin relaxed into the seat and he nodded. “A’ight, I’ll go.”
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Moonrise CH22 – Old Friends


[1049 words – Inspiration Monday, #3WW, Sunday Scribblings 2, The Writing Reader]Anne took a cab instead of her personal car. She didn’t think Globe would put a tracking device on it, but she had to be smart, and this way smarter. Where she was going and with whom she was meeting wasn’t any of Globe’s business.

The taxi left dropped her off downtown in a familiar neighborhood. This was all buildings where the first floor of every structure was boarded up and the street corner she stood on collected hungry eyes, lifeless eyes that ogled her top to bottom. She paid them no mind. If she had to make an example out of one of the apartment denizens, then so be it. Her dealer’s residence was in the dingy apartment complex across the street, the brown brick façade had attracted wealthy tenets at one time, but now the brick was covered in spray-paint, newspaper and other stuff she didn’t want to think about. Anne crossed the street avoiding any eye contact. She wasn’t in the mood for murder, but if some oddball crack head tried anything she was going to bite back.

The gangsters guarding the front door knew her and knew to be quick to move out of her way, no need to go in guns blazing. They were a part of the Seven Sons North crew Anne was dealing with. They procured supplies that only her cash could purchase. Anne ascended two flights of stairs and rounded into a corridor blasting loud hip-hop music.

The young gangbanger hanging by the black painted door at the end of the corridor moved aside and let her through. He didn’t miss the chance to lick his lips at Anne.

How cute, Anne thought. She caressed his biceps with her long nailed fingers. The gangster’s smile faded from his face. Oh, he can feel the danger. Anne smirked, fluttered her eyelashes, blew him a kiss and stepped through the door.

The whole place reeked of weed but Anne doubted the thick fumes floating in the living room would give her enough of a high for a fun time. She inhaled deeply nonetheless. The apartment was packed with the crew – two heavy muscled goons worked their jaws when she maneuvered around them, their grip on their semi-automatics tight. The gangsters watched her back warily, the sight of her more entertaining than the perky whores sprawled on the sofa. That was until their fear overrode their desire.

Leroy and his inner circle were in the kitchen counting cash and measuring LSD filled bags on a counter. When Leroy saw her he forced a wide smile. Anne took measure of him as always, all sharp suit and clever manners.

“Anne, always a pleasure to my eyes. I would have appreciated a call preceding your visit, but ah, I just can’t be angry with you.”

He got up and planted a kiss on the back of her outstretched hand.

“Leroy. I see you’re keeping busy.” Anne nodded and arched an eyebrow toward the black duffel bags filled with guns. She smiled at the firepower piled in there.

“Distribution business is going good, it’s solid. With these super powered motherfuckers jumpin’ through walls an’ shit, people call out for our protection.”

Leroy leaned in, a movement that didn’t go unnoticed by his personal security who slid off the stool and propped himself against the kitchen counter watching them.
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Moonrise CH23 – Reunion


[1127 words – Prompts: Inspiration Monday, #3WW, Sunday Photo Fiction, Sunday Scribblings 2, The Writing Reader]Massey threw his phone on the passenger seat. His cruiser growled when he changed lanes and direction. He triggered his lights and the siren cleared a path for him.

Meet me at 483 Eastlake Ave East in 30 minutes.

This is too easy, he thought. It hadn’t been twenty-four hours since Anne called him and offered a truce. Even then she hadn’t been certain of when or how. She was always cautious. Then, overnight, the Madison Massacre happened. Anne was silent about it, but now she voiced urgency through an untraceable number. She wanted a quick meeting, no questions asked. Massey could tell that something significant had happened; something had stirred loud and scary enough to drive Anne to this meeting. That something was prone to be bad.

By the time Massey pulled over at the given address, it was nearing dusk. Old bones groaning, he sat on the tight seat of the black cruiser. The sky was an angry purple, a raw bruise spreading over the city. Massey put a calloused hand over his heart. This madness would be the death of him. He thought about Denisha. His baby girl was always busy these days; catching her voice on the phone had become as much a rarity as seeing her. To protect Joaquin, Frank had made personal sacrifices. He hoped they wouldn’t blow back on him.

The I-5 express running above rattled with the dull rhythm of rasping car engines speeding by as Massey crossed the street. His eyes frantically scanned for Anne, but the street was empty. Gray buildings erected shoulder to shoulder glared with empty windows – rental and available signs decorated their corners. The dust and smudges on the glass told him they were long forgotten just like the other half the avenue’s length – tarnished and halted by renovations. The posters glued crooked to the lampposts were dated last March. The neighborhood reeked with ostentatious poverty. To Frank’s surprise huddled between a shutdown bar, Bud Light sticker still crowning its entrance and a garage, its heavy black door closed for the day, was a second-hand clothes store, pale mannequins stared at him armless and headless through the frame. A bird feeder hung from a cast iron pole. Massey drummed his fingers on his holster as he approached the door. He clicked the gun free from the leather strap and wrapped his hand around the grip, but keeping it out of view.

“Are you going to shoot the mannequins?”

He spun toward the voice, and had his weapon out.

Anne took stock of it. “You need to reload, cowboy.”

When Massey lowered his weapon, she moved around him, took out a keychain and after selecting the right on, she stuck it in the keyhole. The chain fell away with a rattle against the doorframe. Anne picked up the dangling chain and pulled until it was free and the door swung wide open. The small space was crowded with chairs and sheet covered salon chairs. An unattached sink was placed on the tiled floor, and beside it, a large mirror stood propped reflecting whatever radiance touched its surface.

“Do you own this place?” Massey asked stepping over mannequin hands as he followed Anne inside. “And what’s with the plastic?” he nodded toward the sprawled mannequins.
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Moonrise CH24 – New Friends


[1034 words – Inspiration Monday, #3WW, Sunday Scribblings 2, The Writing Reader, #SOCS]“By our way, you mean the supers way? Fighting with goddamn superpowers! Do you understand how much damage that will cause to this city, to its people? Do you even care?”

Anne rose purposefully from her chair and pointed a finger at him. She moved with such unhinged ferocity that Massey flinched from an invisible blow. “That’s how war has always been fought. Don’t you presume to sit down and teach me the history of war! I’ve lived through them all. I know the stakes, I know the price!”

He focused on Anne’s hips as she rounded the counter, her long legs carrying her aimlessly through the constricted space. Massey didn’t know much about her; just skin crawling tidbits and what they shared in their forbidding encounters. The woman before him was a complete stranger, with tendencies of fiery passion. The way she stood with her frame dipped in shadow and only partial bleak light she looked every bit the many-faced goddess of rebirth. Massey slumped back, defeated by her presence and wondered with a faint stupid smile on his lips whether somewhere in time someone had worshiped her as a goddess. He wasn’t even referring to symbolism. She’d been someone’s mother, wife, and sister. He wondered what a palmist would make of her lifeline… if he believed in that sort of thing. She was a warrior and even though that aspect of her character had been asleep for thousands of years, it was awake now. The idea of an immortal watching human history and playing her role gave him notion sickness. Massey spoke softly knowing he had nothing to shield from her. “I understand what you’re saying. I can’t walk in your shoes, and I don’t claim to know many of the things that are happening now. But want is a damaging war. You reminisce of a different age with different rules. You can’t just burn the entire city to flush out one rat and his tails. People’ll get hurt, innocent people and I can’t allow that.”

Anne glared at Massey, a hot flame dancing in her eyes. “I know how this world works, Frank. I’ve fought for it many times. I will fight again. War is war, and it is bloody no matter what. I called you here because I need friends. I can’t do this alone. If we are smart about it, no innocents will be hurt.”

Massey nodded his head in agreement.

Anne continued, “Globe is planning something massive. It’s already in motion. He has a small team of supers working under his influence. He’s tracking down more supers, bringing them in and using them for some sort of experiment. They never leave his laboratory.”

Massey, deep in thought, stared at Anne. “His laboratory… Does he keep you privy to all that?”

Anne shook her head. “Only as much as he needs to.” She sighed. “Frank, he has Kristof and Peter strapped down in that lab. Whatever he’s doing it’s connected to them both.”

“What would your guess be?”

“If he wipes out all of the supers he’s clear of any danger from them if they try rising against him. But it’s more than that. I think Globe wants to install a new world order. His supers, his genetics. New powers mean new dangers. He’ll rule over us all.”
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Moonrise CH25 – Fragile Destiny


[1030 words | Prompts: Inspiration Monday, #3WW, The Writing Reader, Sunday Scribblings 2, #SoCS]”Who are you?”

Joaquin blinked at the woman’s squinting eyes and the stern expression on her face. She shifted her hands behind her back to hide something. Joaquin allowed a wide grin and took a step back from the door. “Frank told me to wait for someone.” He paused and allowed his eyes to roam over the petite woman from head to toe. “How do I know you’re the one I’m waiting for?”

The woman sighed and brought whatever she was hiding behind her back in plain sight. “Let me guess,” she declared, an amused rise in the corner of her lips, “Frank had to step out, so you got stuck waiting for this.” She waved a thick envelope at Joaquin, and let it thump soundly on a table adorning the entryway.

“So,” she continued after glancing at Joaquin, “who’re you with? CIA, FBI, NSA, DHS? Detective Frank Massey has lots of friends in a variety of federal offices.” Her eyes focused on his right eyebrow. “He also has contacts in other organizations.” She winked. “Street organizations…”

Joaquin’s smile fell. The blonde woman nodded as if he had confirmed her suspicions. “Well, uh, I…” he stammered.

She held up a hand, palm toward Joaquin. “Save it; I don’t want to know.”

Joaquin looked over his shoulder and back to the woman. “What’s your name?” he queried.

She smiled. “Just let Frank know that all the information and ancillary content he wanted is in the package.” She gestured toward the envelope balanced precariously on the edge of the table.

“Okay, uh, Betty, er, I mean, Officer Patterson.”

She smirked and turned to exit the foyer back to the street. Her pleasant smile faded when she saw a black Ford Explorer with dark tinted windows parallel parked across the street. Joaquin followed her gaze, and he noticed the slight distortion coming from the tailpipe. Whoever it was, they left the motor running. The vehicle suddenly pulled into the street and sped away. Betty and Joaquin watched it disappear over the slight rise of the pavement, noting the government license plate.

Betty tightened her jacket and turned back into Frank’s apartment. She met Joaquin’s eyes with a cold determination that made him swallow audibly. “Tell Frank that I don’t know what he’s into, but he needs to watch his back.” She reached over and pushed the envelope further on the table. “He needs to keep me out of whatever’s going on. I want no part of an operation that has spooks watching what’s going on.”

She turned and stepped across the threshold. She looked left and then right, before another glance over her shoulder at Joaquin. She descended the stairs and headed down the sidewalk opposite from the direction the black SUV went. She looked as if she hadn’t a care in the world, but Joaquin knew better.

He was certain that his destiny and Frank’s were intertwined and so very fragile. One mistake could end them both, possibly even the world.
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Moonrise covers

Hey, all, Now that Moonrise is half done with the web serial, I wanted to share with you some draft covers. Click on them to embiggen.

Here’s the “Anne” cover:

Followed by the “Bree” cover:

Here are the Sixteen Sunsets covers to compare with…
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