I didn't just make a career change though. I'm not the same person I was before. I'm stronger, I can heal from wounds that would kill a normal person. I'm developing latent psychic skills at a breakneck speed. Oh yeah, and it would seem that a Pagan goddess has taken permanent residence in my body and mind. Crazy thing is, I'm starting to feel normal, like this is who I'm supposed to be.
Of course, there are those who don't agree. Morrigan and her sisters for example. Actually, I'm pretty sure they'd like nothing more than to see me dead. And if I can't stop them and the demons they've raised, they just might get their wish. Book Trailer
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I couldn’t help feeling a little vindicated as the Captain told him his theory was pretty much paper thin, but he hadn’t even started on me yet. He dismissed Masarelli with a wave of his hand, but Masarelli didn’t move. He just stood there like he was waiting for more instructions or perhaps to hear me get chewed out. He would get neither.
“Now, Masarelli.” The tone in Matthison’s voice had me sitting up straight. “Shut the door behind you.”
Captain Matthison waited until Masarelli closed the door and was sure he had walked far enough away not to overhear our conversation before he continued. Definitely not a good sign.
“You’re not going to like what I have to say, Kincaide, but I’m going to say it and you’re going to listen. I’m putting you on paid administrative leave. Effective immediately.” He was his usual calm self as he handed out my punishment.
“For how long? Wait a minute, what the hell did I do? I came in here, tried to do my job and now you’re punishing me because I didn’t get the desired results? You never said that there would be repercussions if I didn’t produce every time when you offered me this job!” He might be calm, but I was fuming.
He lowered his head and ran a hand through his short brown hair. “I realize every case can’t be easy, that there will be times when you simply can’t get the answers we need. That’s not what this is about and you know it.”
“No, I don’t actually, so why don’t you enlighten me.” It probably wasn’t smart to get flippant with the Captain, but I couldn’t have cared less in the heat of the moment.
“There’s something going on with you. I’ve noticed things over the last couple of weeks, ever since we’ve been dealing with this demon case. Even before that, if we’re being perfectly honest. There‘s no way that witch should have walked out of here like she did.” He was mussing up his hair again, like he didn’t want to finish, so I didn’t give him the chance.
“If the arresting officer had caught that witch’s charms, we wouldn’t even be talking about her right now! And you can’t seriously think I had anything to do with any of this? That my not feeling well is in any way related to the demon running loose? So why put me on leave?” I didn’t even try to hide my disgust at the thought.
“Would you shut up and let me finish. We both know it’s more than you ‘not feeling well’. ‘Not feeling well’ implies that you’re coming down with a cold or something. That is not what is happening with you. And of course I don’t think you had anything to do with the demon. As for being related? Who knows? From what Masarelli says, our best, though admittedly thin, lead had you in some kind of trance. You were catatonic in our interrogation room for Christ’s sake! That’s never happened before. Not once in the three years you’ve been here. You have been getting stronger. I’ve seen it. You spend less and less time with the suspects and walk away with more and more information. But the witch? Charms have never stopped you before. And then you face O’Neil and it’s like you’ve got nothing, no abilities at all. He should have been a cakewalk for you. He didn’t even register on any of our psychic scans. It’s like with more power comes less control. I don’t know what’s going on with you and you don’t either. So until you figure it out, you’re on leave. I just can’t risk you being injured or blowing a case - both of which are very real possibilities and you know it. I don’t want you near the station or anywhere near this case. That’s an order.” He didn’t have the same tone in his voice as he had with Masarelli, but it didn’t make it any easier to hear what he had just said.
“Do you want my badge too?” Okay, it was slightly juvenile, but I couldn’t help myself.
“Are you offering it to me? Because as much as it would disappoint me, I’ll take it if you are,” he said.
Meet the Author
When she isn't writing, Rachel can often be found with her nose buried in a good book. An avid reader of Paranormal/Urban Fantasy, Horror and Steampunk herself, Rachel founded Hallowread- an interactive convention for both authors and fans of those genres.
More information on Hallowread, its schedule of events and participating authors can be found at www.hallowread.blogspot.com and www.facebook.com/Hallowread .
She still lives in Maryland with her husband and three children.
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