Wednesday, March 21, 2012

#WerewolfWeds The Hag - Chapter 23

Please check my #WerewolfWeds page for an overview of this. Thanks.

Teodor hammered on the side door of the Pit. Bilge opened the door. Teodor shoved pass him.

“I thought you were laying low?” Bilge asked.

“Where's Trucker?” Teodor asked.

“Upstairs, you need some clothes?”

Teodor started pass Bilge. Bilge stopped him. “I got customers.”

“I'll go to the mop closet.”

Bilge nodded.

Teodor waited inside the mop closet. It smelt like hops and puke, but he didn't care.

Bilge opened the door and threw in a pair of sweat pants. “Why are you so upset?”

“I don't think the Hag is gone,” Teodor said, pulling up the pants.

“I know that.”

Teodor opened the door. “Peter said that he had her child.”

Bilge hit the wall. “Dammit, I should have realized it.”

“That's bad, right?”

“Bad?” Bilge cracked his knuckles. “No one is safe, if she knows that her child's body is somewhere. Damn Peter. Damn Robert.”

“Trucker is upstairs?”

Bilge nodded.

Teodor ran into the bar, only a few customers were inside. He ran over some broken glass. As he hopped up the stairs, he tried to pull the glass out of his heel.

He opened the door to his apartment. Amanda hovered over their small table with a sauce pan. Gunner glanced over to the door, with a mouth full of spaghetti. Trucker stopped spooning the sauce over his pasta.

“Teodor?” Amanda asked.

Teodor hopped over to the table. He sat down. “I think we are in danger,” he said. He pulled the glass out of his foot

Amanda got up and brought back a kitchen rag. “The Hag is gone.”

“No, she's not,” Teodor said. He wrapped his foot in the rag.

“I thought you took care of her last night?” Gunner asked.

“So did I, but I ran into an old friend. He is sure that she is around. Bilge thinks so too, after I told him about-” Teodor stopped.

Trucker eyes had grown wide. The fork shook in his hand.

“About what?” Amanda asked.

“You are eating.”

Amanda glanced over to the boys. “I think these two can handle anything you say.”

“Peter had said that he had her child,” Teodor said. “That means somewhere there are her child remains, and she will keep looking for him or her. If she can't find her child, she'll take another.”

“So what are we supposed to do?” Amanda asked.

“I want to make sure these two are safe,” Teodor said.

“They are.”

“How safe?”

“If you are suggesting that we go into that underground-”

“No!” Teodor took Amanda's hand. “We have to find those remains.”

Amanda took his hand. “We don't.”

“Amanda-”

“Teodor. Let Bilge and his friends handle it.”

Teodor took the rag off his foot.

Amanda sat back. “I am surprised Steopa told you that.”

“It wasn't Steopa.”

“Who?”

“Perun.”

“I thought he was asleep.”

“He is, but you can still talk to him. He's worried,” Teodor said. “He can feel her in Greenwoods.”

“Why Greenwoods?” Gunner asked. “I thought you went to the cider warehouse last night.”

“We did.”

“But that's not in Greenwoods.”

“It's across the river,” Amanda said.

Trucker put his fork down. “How did they find her baby?”

Teodor glanced at Gunner and Amanda. Gunner knitted his brow together. “Yeah, how did they find her child. We don't even know who she was.”

Amanda curled her blond hair around her finger. “Gunner, do you still have those notes from the library?”

“Yeah.”

“Go get them.”

Gunner left the table. Teodor cleaned his foot. “What is it?”

“One of those women we researched. Something is almost making sense now,” Amanda said.

Gunner returned he handed Amanda the papers. She read through them quickly. “It has to be Elizabeth Swift,” she said. “Her father ran on of the tanneries.”

“So?” Teodor asked.

“So? What happened to Peter last night? His skin was tanned.”

Teodor slapped the table. “She skinned...” He didn't finish when he saw Trucker's expression.

“I wonder if Swift Tannery was in Greenwoods?” Amanda asked. “I can't remember where it was.”

“Why wouldn't be near the meat packing area?” Gunner asked.

“The smell, but it would have to be close enough to take delivery of the hides and urine,” Teodor said.

“What?”

“We are talking the 1800's, right? In my village it was the smelliest place. They used the urine to cure the hides.”

“Gross,” Trucker said.

“Yeah, gross,” Gunner said.

Someone knocked on their door. Amanda got up to answer it. Bilge stood outside, with a thin cigar in his mouth. “Amanda could you watch the bar for a moment?”

“Sure,” she said.

After she left, Bilge sat down in her vacant chair by the table. “You still think the Hag is around.”

“We think we know who she is,” Gunner said.

“Who?”

“Elizabeth Swift,” Teodor said.

“You mean 'Beth, Beth, the wife of Death?'” Bilge asked.

“Huh?” Gunner asked.

Trucker swallowed his food. “Beth, Beth, the wife of Death. Had a crying baby. She tanned his hide, and she cried; 'now he's ready for Daddy'.”

Bilge put out his cigar. “It's a game.”

“Didn't you ever play it?” Trucker asked.

Gunner shook his head.

“It's like tag, who ever is caught when you say the word Daddy, they become it,” Trucker explained.

“I never heard of it,” Teodor said.

“Me either,” Gunner said.

“I played it when I was Trucker's age,” Bilge said. “I think only kids from Deerbow know it.”

“I came here a couple of years ago,” Gunner said.

“It would fit. Her child was buried in-” Bilge's face turned white. “The workhouse cemetery.”

“That's why she attacked us?” Gunner asked.

“She was looking for her child. Peter and Robert weren't controlling her, they only released her.” Bilge slapped the table. “Idiots!”

“Would they have moved the body?” Teodor asked.

“More than likely.”

“We have to find it.”

Bilge stood up. “I'll call in some favors.”

He left the apartment. Teodor motioned to the plates of spaghetti. “Eat up, it's getting cold.”

“All the kids are gone from the workhouse, so they are safe,” Gunner said.

“Yeah, they should be,” Teodor said. “Just to be safe, I want you two not to leave Amanda or mine's side, you understand?”

Gunner nodded.

Trucker slurped up a noodle, splashing sauce on his face. “Okay.”

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