Mallory Mors, death witch and detective with Baton Rouge’s Supernatural Investigative Unit, controls every aspect of death; she can even touch a dead body and know how it died. When she’s called to the scene of the city’s first zombie attack, her magic leads her to a voodoo queen who claims to be controlled by werewolves.
The Werewolf Protection League, a political organization fighting for werewolf rights, insists they have nothing to do with the killings. As the kidnappings and murders continue, everyone becomes a suspect. Aided by her boyfriend, a six hundred year old vampire, and all the supernatural citizens of her city, Mallory fights to close a case that may claim her life.
“You’re missing body parts?” Danny hadn’t caught up with me so I asked a crime scene technician.
“Yes, umm, a lot of them actually, we have both heads, and one is attached to a torso, but the other one, well, it isn’t.” He cleared his throat. Seeing that I wasn’t going to be sick, he went on in greater detail. “We have one femur, popped out of its socket, but not the lower leg. Over there,” he pointed a few feet to the left, “an arm, and a second leg, this one whole. The torso is the most intact of anything. The head, left arm, and upper arm are all still attached.”
“Which one is that?” I asked. He stared at me, so I repeated the question. I was ready to ask a third time when Danny came up. His look told me he could see my fury.
“Your eyes are gone,” he said simply, and then turned to the tech. “Do we have an I.D. for that victim yet?”
“No,” he gulped. I was mildly disgusted that a member of the police force couldn’t answer a simple question because my eyes had turned from their normal green to white with an opal’s swirl of colors. I brushed them both off and walked toward the body. No one stopped me when I pulled the cover down and laid my hand on her chest.
A thousand details flooded into me. My mind filled with images of fur and teeth, something large and rank. Her death had been terribly slow. Claws ripped into her skin, tearing her limbs apart. The strength of those hands sealed the wounds closed, cheating her out of a quick death from blood loss. A heart attack killed her. I wondered if she recognized the symptoms as she watched her attacker eat her limbs.
I moved from her body to the limb beside it. The leg was still wearing its white nurse’s uniform. The knob of the joint looked polished in the morning sunlight. I put my hand on top of the cloth, and a second surge of information flooded me. He ran from them, listening to the sounds of his coworker being torn apart. He had been a runner, but he hadn’t been fast enough to outrun the thing that ripped him apart.
“Older female and middle aged male,” I said to the technician. He replied, but I didn’t catch it. My mind was still with them, still dying with them. I walked up to the tree. There was a thick stain six feet up on the trunk. I put my hand on top of the mark and saw the death of the man.
“What happened?” Danny asked quietly.
“It chased him down, grabbing his leg there,” I pointed to where the limb remained. “It ripped the leg out, and then carried the rest of him back here. It lifted him up. It looked at him. Then it ate the heart out of his chest.”
“Werewolf.” The wolf had devoured his heart in front of him, just like in my nightmare.
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