Friday, June 10, 2011

The bar is busy, and across town, not where Marc or the others would think to look for him. Running a hand through his shaggy red hair, Ron sighs and downs half his beer. His thoughts are lost on the one girl he thought would be his mate. A dolphin dangles from the chain in his fingertips, flashing in the light from the neon signs. His bleary eyes focus on the dangling charm. It sways hypnotically and he sighs, glad tonight's patrol is over, and there are no classes to worry about in the morning.

A brunette slides into the seat across from his. Her voice is soft, sensual. She flirts outrageously and it takes Ron a few moments to realize she is trying to pick him up. He tells her that he really isn't interested, but she persists, telling him he shouldn't drink alone. He apologizes, rising and half stumbling as he heads for the door.

She is right there at his elbow. Helping him stand upright, offering to get him a cab. A man offers to help and she tells him they are together, that it is okay. She gets Ron to lean on her, taking his weight more easily than one would think. He sniffs, her scent jogging something in his mind, shaking off some of the alcohol haze. A cab pulls up, the driver getting out to open the passenger side back door. Ron gags, bending over to try to stop heaving. He tries to breathe, but the smell of old blood and bleach makes his stomach roll again.

She is speaking again, telling him that she will take him home, help him feel better. Just get in, I'll take care of you. He rises, a hand on the door. He breathes again, trying to get a sense of things, trying to shake the cobwebs from his brain. There it is again, old blood... very old blood. The scent of bleach is almost as old. If he weren't a shifter, he probably wouldn't smell it.

A dry musty smell washes over him as the cabbie moves behind him. The man reaches out to grab his arm and Ron drops, going limp as if he passed out. Hitting the ground, Ron slithers under the cab and lets his terror rush the change. Moments later a red fox darts out the other side and under an oncoming car.

His only thought was to get to the Tavern. If he lucked into a patrol, even better. Ducking into an alley, Ron wriggled under a trash bin to catch his breath. His ears catch the sound of shuffling feet. Ron stills, listening closely. Her voice drifts as she talks to someone else. Ron stares at the darkness beyond his hiding spot.

"He's not here. I can't smell him."

The man passes within feet of Ron and the werefox holds his breath.

"Forget it. No one will believe anything he says. He is wasted. They'll put it down to hallucinations. Keep the cab on the corner. We'll either pick up a stranded barfly or a couple bar hopping. We won't go hungry tonight. Let's get out of here."

Ron huddles under the bin, trying to gauge the time. His clothes were left behind when he changed under the cab. By now they were gone, same with the dolphin. Sneaking out from under the bin, Ron works his way to the end of the alley. The cab is gone. Which means they got someone or moved on. He darts to the alley next to the bar, nose twitching as he seeks out musty odors. None...

Ears perked, tail low, Ron hightails it for the Tavern.

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