A Night's Tale Ch. 04byDomwoolf©
Chapter 04: The Common Factor
Heather stood in the center of the dark living room in a quiet house in the middle of the night just listening to the quiet sounds a home makes when its owners are away. The ticking of clocks here and there throughout the house, the quiet whisper of the air conditioning unit and the rattle of things disturbed by the flow of air. Small fan noises from the computers in the spare room turned into a part time office. The quiet hum from the compressor under the fridge in the kitchen.
All the million and one sounds a lived in house makes that fade into the background of peoples lives.
The house felt lived in and loved, it was tidy but not obsessively so, clean but with areas of chaos. The couple of dishes in the sink, mail gone through but not sorted and put away on the coffee table. The open book laid on the bedside tale under the small lamp waiting for its owner to finish it and replace it in the shelf above the headboard.
People lived here, laughed here, loved here. They ate and shared meals and spent quiet time together in front of the TV or computer or alongside each other in bed while reading or making love or sleeping.
So why did the house feel so empty?
There were no signs of violence, nothing broken, no blood. Two cars in the garage, doors and windows locked, alarm set. Yet there was nobody home.
Heather caught a brief flash of movement from the backyard. Just a hint of an animal slipping through the bushes, seconds later the sliding glass door opened and a creature, half human half animal slipped into the room.
It spoke in a sort of half growl half spoken language, "Nothing, no trail at all in the past two days anywhere around the outside."
"Thanks for checking. Get changed. Your bags over by the front door."
The figure slipped past Heather becoming more human as it moved past her, by the time it reached the door a naked human female stood shivering in the night air.
"Why does changing back always leave me cold, while changing into the wolf feels like I'm on fire?"
"I have no clue; I'm a vampire not a veterinarian." Heather watched as the pretty brown haired woman pulled on a black tee shirt over her small breasts and tugged a set of black jeans over her slim hips. Heather smiled remembering several months ago before the first change how Lynn complained of the weight she had put on, not a problem anymore. Werewolf metabolism was so high, that the trick was to eat enough calories each day to keep her from looking like one of those anorexic models that partied at the casinos. Lynn was devouring a protein bar even as she pulled on her boots and jacket.
"We done here?" she asked as she zipped up her clothes bag.
"I guess we are. I can't think of anything we missed. They are just gone, like the other five families. Poof!"
The two women slipped out the back door, Heather reset the alarm, and they eased over the back wall and walked down the sandy dirt road to their van.
Once on the road Heather began to go over the case out load. "Five families, now six, disappear, no signs of violence, no more than the usual money problems, no indication of domestic problems. No notice to family or friends or co workers or employers. Just gone. Cars, money, clothes, everything left behind. No indication of where they went, nobody hears from them. Nothing."
Lynn's face flashed in and out of the street lights as she reclined in her seat. "That about sums it up. Cops got nothing. Nothing related about the families. Different jobs, different schools for the kids, different areas of the city. Different religions, backgrounds, ages, lifestyles."
Heather sighed. "That's why the cops have nothing. Six different areas, different jurisdictions, and nothing to connect the disappearances. With no violence and no one making a lot of noise, it just vanishes into the background of daily calls."
"So how did it end up on our radar?" Lynn sat up in her seat and studied her friend as they drove home.
"A friend of mine is best friends with the third family that went missing. Someone she knows mentioned that another family had also just gone missing." Heather glanced at Lynn. "She went to the cops, who were less than interested, and then she started checking news reports and found other families gone. She came to me because I helped her out with another problem last year and here we are."
"Yeah but where are we? So far we got nothing."
"We need to find the common factor, a link between these families. Then we can turn it over to the police through a detective I know and let them handle it."
Heather pulled into the underground parking at their condo. Moments later they walked into the penthouse condo they shared. Lynn had stopped to get the mail, sorting it as she walked into the living room.
Heather saw her grin as she tossed Heather a letter. "What's so funny?"
Lynn laughed out loud. "Sorry, I just get a chuckle every time I see a letter addressed to you. I mean, how perfect is it to have a vampire named Cross?"
Heather returned the laugh, thinking how lucky she was to have Lynn in her life. A vampire lives such a long time that unless one was very careful to stay involved with the society they were living in, it was easy to become an anachronism. Lost in the styles and expressions of the past and sinking further and further away from the now. Lynn not only provided a fresh and up to date look at the world, but she saw it from young and fresh eyes and was able to give that perspective to Heather.
Heather tucked the letter away on her desk to read later. She turned on her vamp speed and slipped in behind Lynn, sliding her hands under the werewolf's tee shirt and cupping her breasts. Her thumbs found Lynn's nipples and began rubbing the small tips until they stood up high and proud. Lynn leaned back against the taller woman, pressing her ass against Heathers crotch. She raised her arms over Heathers head and locked her hands behind her neck.
Heather cupped Lynn's breasts, squeezing and pulling them. She licked the side of the woman's neck just behind her ear and nipped her earlobe playfully. A low growl started deep in Lynn's chest and she turned her head for a kiss. The two women turned until they faced each other still locked in a deep kiss. Heather pulled the woman's tee shirt up and off as Lynn undid and pushed the vampire's jeans down to the floor. They sank together into the deep pile rug on the floor.
Neither woman was strictly gay or heterosexual, they both enjoyed sex as a full body contact sport. Lynn found that while she enjoyed rough sex before she became a werewolf, now she had a body that could take whatever punishment her partner could dish out and cum back for more. The ability of Heather to heal almost instantly meant she didn't have to hold back either. It gave a whole new dimension to the term rough sex although it was rather hard on the furniture. In the months since they had been exploring how hard and how rough they could play they had destroyed two coffee tables, one overstuffed chair, and the headboard on Heather's bed.
Not that they always played rough, sometimes it was the gentle caresses and the touching, stroking and holding they kept them intertwined either on the bed or curled up on the floor with a comforter.
Tonight it was the comfort of being together as they wrapped around each other kissing and hugging. The missing families affected them more than either woman would care to admit. The feel of another naked body held against one's own was an indulgence they both needed.
Lynn's fingers searched out the fold of her friend's pussy splitting the delicate skin and reaching for the pink bud within. Heathers pussy was already becoming wet and slick as her questing fingers spread the moisture around the rapidly hardening clit. Lynn used two fingers to expose the inner most sensitive skin at the top of her bud and her tongue licked and teased the top of her clit until Heathers body arched under her manipulations. Lynn rode the thrusting pelvis, never stopping her assault on the clit until Heather cried out and flooded the valley of her vee with juices as she came.
Heather grabbed Lynn and using her vampire strength tore open her jeans splitting them between Lynn's ass cheeks and around to the buttons in the front which popped and scattered throughout the room. Lynn's delicate panties didn't stand a chance and the tattered remains were left floating across the room as Heather pushed two fingers into the warm wet tunnel of Lynn's exposed cunt.
She pumped her fingers into the women arching her fingers to press against the sensitive g spot and using her other arm to lift Lynn's back and ass to position her in the most open and vulnerable way. Heather added another finger as her lovers tunnel open under her manipulations and just as she started to quiver into orgasm, popped her thumb into the tight ring of her asshole. Lynn's came screaming and twisting in heather sure grip until they both sank down on the floor spent and loose. They cuddled there on the floor kissing and stroking each other.
Lynn slept in late the next afternoon. She had only been up a few hours when the sun set and Heather awoke. Lynn set at the computer arraigning the files she had been researching as Heather slept.
Heather always went for the kitchen first, taking a bag of blood from the special fridge in the cupboard and dropping it in the warming pan of body temperature water that sat on the counter. Three minutes to bring the blood up to body temperature then poured into a thermal mug that would keep it warm as Heather enjoyed her breakfast.
"My, you have been a busy little wolf." Heather looked at the stacks of paper arraigned on the desk.
"I've been looking for the common link and I may have found two."
"Two?" Heather was suddenly intensely interested in looking at the stacks.
"It's not in there." Lynn pointed at the papers. "That's just the crap I waded through to find out there was nothing there. However, what I did find is interesting." She turned the computer screen towards Heather. "All the family homes are bordered either in back or on the side by large areas of open space." She flashed through a series of captured images from the Google Earth program showing aerial images of each of the six homes."
"Ok, that's a common factor alright, but it's also a common factor to thirty five percent of homes in the outlying areas."
"Yeah. I kinda discounted that one myself, although it might account for the way the families disappeared."
"The other weird thing I found is that each of the six families had a girl child seventeen years old."
"Again statistically weird but not uncommon enough to be helpful."
"That's what I thought until I looked up the girls on My space and facebook and other kid sites. All the girls had dark brown hair worn long, were tall and thin, and in every case looked nothing like the rest of their families."
Lynn began to flash through pictures of each of the missing teens.
Heather's face showed the shock she was feeling as each girls image showed flashed across the screen.
"Show me the families." The urgency in Heathers voice startled Lynn.
She brought the image files up for each family that she had found.
Heather dropped into a chair. "We may not be able to help these people."
Lynn looked around the computer screen. "What? Why?"
"The girls are changelings or foundlings as they were once called."
Lynn was confused. "You mean adopted? All of them?"
"Not adopted, switched at birth. They are the children of elves!"
Lynn was stupefied. "You're kidding right? Elves. Like in Santa's elves? Little people that make toys?"
Heather smiled amused at the disbelief on her friend face and in her voice. "More like the Lord of the Rings. Elves were a nomadic people of the forests of what is now Germany and most of Europe. They were fierce warriors that were used by many rulers to fight in their armies."
"They sort of went underground during the dark ages, partially due to their diminishing numbers and partially because the Church thought they were Satan's minions."
Heather paused, thinking back over history. "It is said they are often mistaken for gypsies and use that to hide from humans. Originally they were mistaken for minor gods or deities."
Lynn leaned back in her chair. "You're serious. Elf's exist?"
"Says the werewolf to the vampire?"
Lynn sat shaking her head. "Wow, reality check. What other creatures of myth and legend exist?"
"Quite a few less than there used to be, the modern world has killed off or caused to go underground most of the beings of old. In fact I haven't heard of an actual elf tribe in well over a hundred years."
Lynn stared at her friend. "I keep forgetting how old you are."
Heather smiled. "And I keep forgetting that in the modern world most people don't realize I exist."
"I understand that one. I'm a werewolf living with a vampire and half the time I don't believe in either of us." Lynn turned back to the computer. "Ok, elves. So what do we know about elves and changelings?"
"Actually not much. Changelings are supposedly swapped at birth with human children so that the child is raised by humans, although why an elf would want his or her child raised that way is something I don't comprehend."
Lynn was looking at each child and their families. "I agree there isn't much in the way of family resemblance, but why assume elf?"
Heather pointed to the pictures. "Individually not much besides the obvious difference in looks between the families and the missing girls, but if you look at all the girls together..."
Lynn nodded. "I see what you mean. Together all six girls could be mistaken for one family."
"Call Jeffery. We need a good facial recognition program. If we can run the six through the program and match them to local school photos or My space we might be able to find others before they disappear."
Lynn nodded as she opened her cell phone. "Jeffery is gonna love this. We just paid his rent for the month."
It took three days and required a complete upgrade of both Heathers computers and the server she had in a back room but with an obscene amount of money many things were possible. When Jeffery a young rather overweight computer geek was done Heather and Lynn each had their own networked work stations and the most up to date system on the market. Jeffery included many different graphic programs and the latest commercial grade facial recognition program available. He also provided hacks into many local and state data bases.
Heather and Lynn spent the next couple of days feeding the program with the faces of the missing girls and comparing them to school and internet social networking programs. The first run through brought back over fifteen thousand hits.
Heather and Lynn just laughed. "I think we need to refine our parameters a bit."
Heather looked at all the faces on the integrated big screen. "Yeah."
Thirty seven searches later they had refined the program down to a base of just twelve names and faces. Looking up their addresses on the mapping program eliminated eight of the twelve.
Talking it over the women decided they had eliminated as much as they could by computer, the rest would have to be done in the field. Taking two names each they split up and headed to the homes of the fey looking girls to try and discover if any of the names might be one of the families in danger.
Lynn prowled in wolf form, the big open area behind the row of houses that her first family lived in. She wasn't too worried about being seen, as a wolf she wasn't much larger than a dog, and in the dark of the night she was almost invisible.
There were plenty of scents in the desert area both animal and human none however was unusual or seemed to be concentrated near the house Lynn was investigating. Drawing closer to the house Lynn picked up the scent of dogs. She stopped for a second judging the wind direction, she realized that while she could smell the dogs in the yard they would be unable to catch her scent.
She padded closer until she could look into the yard. Sleeping by the back door of the house were two big bull mastiffs. Lynn slipped away into the night. No one was going to "disappear" a family with those two guardians.
Heather slipped over the fence and leaped to the roof of the attached garage. Most people were religious about ground floor security but seldom gave a thought about the second floor especially windows that they couldn't normally reach without a ladder. Heathers night vision had spotted a cracked window on an upstairs bathroom and her vampiric skills made for easy access.
She slid through the house a dark shadow in the night, moving from room to room observing the house and its inhabitants. She found the girl in the rear second floor back bedroom. Quietly asleep she looked younger and more elfin than she had in her photos. Heather wandered her room just getting a feel for the girl, her life, and her passions.
She could see that the girl was into the outdoors, hiking boots and pictures of the girl climbing hiking trails and wandering through forests abounded the room. She was artistic in the old fashioned sense, paintings and wood carvings were scattered throughout the room. She was also a thoroughly modern girl with a computer and a laptop.
Heather slipped out the same way she came in and headed for her last address.
Lynn's last address was empty; a big foreclosure sign out front explained the missing family. No foul play just a bad economy. Lynn headed back home.
Heathers last address was also a bust for a quite different reason. The girl had gone off to collage, so that family was safe if their reasoning was correct. No girl, no reason to attack the family. Heather returned home.
Back at the apartment they discussed when the next attack might take place. Looking over the six known disappearances gave them no time table that they were able to discern until they checked the missing girls birthdays. All the families had vanished within a one month time span before the girls eighteenth birthdays.
Checking on their one remaining possibility they discovered the girls birthday was less than three weeks away.
"So we stake out the house and in less then 20 days we will know who or what is stealing these families." Heather was studying the information that Lynn had on the family. Mara Anis Morrison, soon to be eighteen not only didn't look like the rest of the Morrison clan, even her name was unusual. The rest of the family on both the mother and fathers sides had common everyday names. Ann, Frank, William, Janet not an unusual name or spelling on either side as far back as the genealogy program could trace, and most were Nordic blonds, yet here was an auburn haired esthetically thin girl with a name straight out of old Elvin legends. Mara meaning priestess and Anis meaning dawn, i.e. Priestess of the Dawn.
Heather was still pondering the hows and whys of an elf changeling several nights later as she took her turn on watch. Stakeout was probably the single most boring thing she could think of to be doing. Lynn had changed form and was probably off chasing a rabbit for dinner while Heather sat in the normally comfortable captain's chair in her van shifting from side to side as antsy as if she were stalking prey.
The house as usual went dark between 10:30 and twelve and the Morrison's were all asleep in there beds. Now closing on three am there wasn't even a breeze to provide movement in the almost leafless pre spring branches of the tiny immature trees around the newly constructed single family residence.
Heather got out of the van to stretch and move around, for a vampire known for their death like stillness to be so restless wasn't a good sign. That got Heathers attention; something was making her restless, something she had seen or felt and not recognized was bothering her subconscious.