Winter Rain, part 22

Alleyways, yards, parks, and short sprints across side streets. Easy. Humans don’t see well at night, especially if you stick to the shadows and they to the light. Which is always the way.

Stay out of the headlights of cars, though. Another hard-learned lesson.

I can smell Brennan and Elish ahead. Nobody else yet. But I’m behind, so that’s not surprising.

I need a plan.

Perhaps I should just keep it simple. Catch up to them, tackle her, and tear her throat out. Problem solved. That would certainly be Faolan’s approach.

Somehow, though, I doubt he’d thank me for taking it. And if we aren’t at war now, we would be after. Maybe not.

Until I have proof.

No sound of cars, I tear across a side street and back into an alleyway. But I need to get further south. I slip through a break in a fence and across a small, deserted yard. The house lights are all off. I leap their front gate and into a quiet residential street.

There’s a couple up ahead, but they are walking away from me. No problem. I love these old streets. Parked cars and long, dark stretches between bright, white street lights. Nothing but shadow to hide in. If I wanted to be spotted, I’d have trouble doing it.

There’s a run-down looking house ahead. I run up its front porch for height and leap over its rotting fence. I should be able to cross Taylee from the next street—there’s a dark stretch by a school that should be deserted—then it’s much more open.

The back fence is in similar disrepair; too high to jump, but with rotten wood . . . . I dive through a gap—too narrow, but I knock through.

The only thing I can do is get to someone who will listen. Not Cormac, for sure. Probably not Faolan, either. Elish might. Sheridan, too. If I can get to one of them. Unfortunately, I’m going to have to get past Brennan, first. And I don’t think that’s going to go over well.

I catch a stronger whiff of Elish on the wind. I bark a warning, but downwind . . . I doubt she can hear me. And, either way, they are going to need more convincing than I can put into this voice.

Hey, Tara, too! I must be level with them. I can see the lights on Taylee, just ahead.

I’d better figure out something soon. I’m running out of time.