©2009 Ellie Ann
Yosef crammed her skirt into the bag, he wouldn’t worry about her toiletries, they could buy some on the road. They had five minutes before the Elemental found them.
“I-I can’t go,” Jane said. She sat lotus style on her bed, arm protectively covering her sleeping baby. “It’s her bed time, she gets so cranky when I wake her.”
“The Elemental is coming for you now.” When he was stressed, his strong Middle-Eastern accent came out. With a yank, he zipped close the bag. “Not any Elemental either, this one’s a warlord.”
Jane’s face did not reflect the horror that it should. “What’s an Elemental again?”
“A Demon, Jane, they’re Demons.”
She stood up slowly, and leaned over the baby. “Demon,” she whispered.
Whether startled by a sound in the apartment hallway, or just paranoid, Yosef drew his pistol, studded in gold. He shifted from one foot to the other. “Does James know which apartment you live in?”
“James rents this apartment for me.”
A door slammed at the end of the hall. Footsteps thudded closer. As if a reflex, Yosef leaped towards the baby. He slid the child in the baby Bjorn and snapped it on his back. His movements were so fluid they did not even wake the little girl.
“Put her down,” Jane’s voice cracked. She pulled at the carrier but Yosef wrenched it away. He grabbed Jane’s face in between his two great hands.
“James is a demon,” he said, fire in his eyes. “Demons take what are theirs. I don’t care if you let him drag you back to his home, but this baby,” his voice softened, “is mine now.”
“The baby is his,” Jane said.
“Which is why I need it,” Yosef said.
The lights went out. Yosef backed against the wall. Not one beam of light reflected anywhere. Jane whimpered. Feeling along the wall, Yosef stepped silently towards the window. Jane’s breath came in gasps from the floor. She called out, “my baby. Where is my baby? Don’t leave me.”
If Yosef replied to her calls, it would murder the baby.
He had to be out the window in three seconds. Sulfur wafted up his nose. His fingers blindly bumped the latch, he popped it open.
Jane sobbed behind him.
“It’s fine, Jane,” a melodic male’s voice said, “It’s okay, I’m here.”
Yusef slid the window open.
“Oh James,” her voice shook, “you’re here.”
The hot outside air blew fiercely in Yusef’s face as he stepped silently onto the metal platform.
“Goodbye darling,” James said as he snapped her neck.
Yusef just had enough time to pull out the whittled cross before James was two inches from his nose. Yusef stuck the long end of the crucifix into the fleshy part of his chin. James gulped. “If you kill me, another demon will come after her,” he said. “We always get what belongs to us.”
Yusef plunged the cross into James’ mouth. “We always get them back.”
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