Ravenna woke to sunshine on her face. The curtains were open and Rosalie was nowhere to be seen. So she hopped out of bed, quickly dressed, and went in search of her friend; she figured she was either downstairs pouting in the car, or if she was lucky had gone to get them some food. But when she opened the motel room door it was to find the parking lot filled with cop cars and an ambulance. And there was Rosalie leaning against her Charger, aviator sunglasses on, talking to a police officer. The officer in question was male, blonde, about five-ten, and according to his outfit, a member of the RCMP.
Besides her sunglasses, Rosalie wore what Ravenna considered her usual “uniform,” which consisted of more tight black pants—possibly the same ones from yesterday—a black leather belt and a silver skull-and-crossbones belt buckle—Ravenna thought the buckle was a bit hokey and gothic, but there was no keeping Rosalie from wearing it—her black combat boots, and one of her many interchangeable slightly revealing tees, today’s being a fire-red vee-neck. To top it off she was also wearing her beat up leather jacket. The ensemble made her look…uncooperative; which summed her up pretty good actually. Ravenna was similarly attired in her own sort of “uniform,” or standard outfit. She wore black flats, tight blue jeans that made her ass look way good, a navy tank top, and a tight black zip up hoodie. She’d left her coat in the room though since it had seemed like it was going to be a beautiful day.
Ravenna decided it was time to find out what was going on; she picked her way down the motel stairs which were crowded with official personal coming and going, and then started for Rosalie. As she made her way across the black top she began to pick up Rosalie and the officer’s conversation.
“So you say you heard a noise?” The officer said dubiously.
“It was a scraping noise,” Rosalie answered icily, “and it was followed by somebody screaming.”
The officer gave a limp nod. “And then what did you do?”
“I woke my friend up.”
“And she heard the scream as well?”
Rosalie replied with barely restrained rage in her voice. “Ya, we heard it again, right after she woke up.”
“Mhmm,” The officer continued, unaware of his witness’s growing frustration. “And approximately at what time was this?”
“It was around three o’clock.” She said bluntly.
“Three o’clock. Alrighty, was there anything else you remembered ma’am?” His voice was good ol’ small townness in audible form.
“Actually yes,” She said curtly. “I—I mean we—saw someone.”
“You saw someone?” He frowned in confusion, like something just didn’t add up for him.
“In the parking lot, after we heard the scream.” She clarified, the impatience in her voice growing.
He scribbled something down in the notebook he held in his hand. The first time he had bothered doing so since he’d ask to speak with her. “I see… and what did they look like?”
“He was tall, at least six feet; he was wearing dark pants and a dark shirt and he had a trench coat on.”
It was Rosalie’s turn to look vaguely befuddled. “Well, he was just standing there, staring at the motel… it was really eerie. And he just sort of appeared after the thumping noise, but was gone after we heard the scream.”
“’Kay. Well I think that’s everything for now. Stick around alright? We might need you to verify some details. Here’s my card, just in case you remember anything else.” The officer said easily, as if this sort of thing happened all the time in Deadman’s Flats. He handed Rosalie a small plain rectangular card; the name on it read Officer Pennington.
“Of course, no problem Officer Pennington.” Rosalie responded, pocketing the card. She scowled at him as soon as he turned to walk away. She’d never been a fan of police. Especially incompetent police. Ravenna reached Rosalie just as the officer was leaving.
“What’s going on?” Ravenna asked gesturing with a slight nod towards the retreating officer.
“Someone was killed last night.” Rosalie answered, her voice hollow.
“Ya, apparently he was ripped apart as if he was attacked by an animal or something… there are pieces of him actually missing…” Rosalie stared off into the distance as she spoke, aloof and unreachable.
“Oh my god!” Ravenna raised a hand to her mouth in shock as she attempted to process such violence.
Rosalie looked down and kicked at a small rock. “Ya…” She sighed. “But the thing that’s really got police baffled is that he was still in his motel room when it happened. How does an animal get inside a motel room, kill someone, then let itself out, and politely shut the door behind it?” She finished with an angry scoff.
“Wait, it happened…here?!” Ravenna’s voice quavered only a little as she pointed at the ground for emphasis.
“Ya… like three rooms down from us.” Rosalie replied pensively, gaze still trained off at middle-space. Then she turned to Ravenna, who could tell by her knitted eyebrows that beneath her sunglasses Rosalie was scowling at her. “I told you something was going on!” Rosalie smacked Ravenna’s arm, who merely stood staring at her, jaw agape.
“That’s fucking scary! What’d the cops say?” Ravenna said as she absently rubbed her arm where it had been struck. She was trying hard to ignore the thought that whoever had been killed had only been mere feet from them and it might have been only mere chance that it was not them who’d died.
“Well, they don’t really have much to go on. We’re supposed to stick around though, in case they need to talk to us.” Rosalie answered with a shrug.
A noise sounded from above. Rosalie and Ravenna both turned around to see the stretcher as it was pulled down the stairs and up to the ambulance. Ravenna gulped.
“Hey maybe we should get outta here, eh? Let’s hit the bar or something, I’m not really in the mood for breakfast.”
“Sounds like a plan to me.” Rosalie replied absently, her eyes trained on the stretcher.
* * *
“Alright Rosy, it’s time to turn that frown upside down.” Ravenna announced as she stumbled back to their booth, two shot glasses in hand.
“Don’t call me that. And I’m fine Ravenna, seriously. I’m just a little tired; I didn’t get a whole lot of sleep last night with everything that happened.” Rosalie insisted for what seemed like the hundredth time.
“Liar! You’re so not fine. Besides, a shot will be good for you. And as your psychologist I really must insist.” She said sliding the shot glass in front of Rosalie.
They both slammed back their drink and made a face.
“Woo… what was that?” Rosalie asked as she dropped her glass back down on the table.
“I’m not quite sure,” Ravenna shrugged, “I think they’re called Snake Bites.”
Rosalie cocked a quizzical brow. “What’s in them?”
“Uh, JD and tequila I think.” Ravenna laughed.
“Dude you really are an alcoholic.” Rosalie scoffed.
Ravenna shrugged again. “I am who I am.”
“So what now? Think we should go back to the motel?” Rosalie suggested; she hoped against hope that her friend was tiring of the drinking and would be ready for bed soon. The bar was small, full of locals, stains, and strange smells.
Ravenna looked taken aback. “What? So soon? No way man, I’m just getting started.”
“Dude, it’s like 12:30, you’ve been drinking for like twelve hours straight. I think it’s time to go.” Rosalie said, part weary part exasperated.
“Nah, you go. I’ll catch up.” Ravenna replied as she collected the shot glasses and got ready to make her way back to the bar to order another round for herself.
“Oh no you won’t. You’ll end up in a tree again, missing half your clothes, and I am so not in a climbing mood. Come on ya alchy.” Rosalie grabbed Ravenna by the arm and began towing her out of the bar.
“Ok, ok, ok. Let go! I can walk by myself, thank you very much.” Ravenna slurred, brushing herself off.
“No, you can’t. You’re drunk.”
“No, I’m adorable.” Ravenna could practically hear Rosalie’s eyes as they rolled in their sockets.
Together they left the bar and stepped into the night air. Rosalie immediately started walking briskly back to the motel—they’d left her Charger there, what with the ambulance and all the cop cars clogging up the place it had seemed like too much trouble trying take it out especially after learning the bar was just down the block— leaving Ravenna trailing behind.
“Dude, hurry up.” Rosalie called impatiently from up ahead.
“No, you hurry up!” Ravenna retorted.
“I’m trying to! But your drunk ass is taking forever!”
“You take forever!”
“Ya, ya.” Rosalie said with a dismissive wave. “Come on. I’d like to make it to the motel before check out.”
Ravenna stopped stumbling and straightened herself before addressing Rosalie, who had also stopped and had turned to look at her. There was a about a block of street between them.
“Well if you’re in such a hurry to get back, then just go! I don’t need you to babysit me!”
“You know what? Fine, I’m going, but don’t blame me when you wake up in a ditch.” Rosalie responded, giving up. She made another dismissive gesture then turned around and kept walking back to the motel.
Meanwhile, Ravenna, who was still in the middle of the street, had spotted something shiny in the gutter and gone over to examine it. She rummaged around looking for it for at least two minutes before she found what it was—a metal water bottle. She was turning the bottle over in her hands when she was distracted by the sound of a twig snapping behind her. She turned to find the man from the parking lot not three inches from her face. Before she could so much as tell him to fuck off he reached out and snatched her by the upper arms and bit her hard on the shoulder. She screamed, and using the metal bottle she still clutched in her hands, she smashed it over the man's head, cracking it open. Surprised at the damage she momentarily stared at the crack in the metal before hitting the man over the head several more times. As soon as he let go of her Ravenna darted after Rosalie, screaming, and eventually passed her. Rosalie, who had heard the screaming, turned to find Ravenna bearing down on her.
“What’s going on?” She asked, confused.
“No time. Run!” Ravenna yelled as she flew by.
“What d’ya mean ‘run’?” Rosalie demanded bemusedly as she watched Ravenna rush away from her, suddenly eager to be back at the motel. She then turned around to see the ominous man running doggedly toward her. “Sh-i-i-i-t!!”
Rosalie raced after Ravenna and soon they were both back in their motel room locking the door behind them. They leaned against the door, catching their breaths.
“We need to barricade the door. Ravenna, get the dresser.” Rosalie said, taking charge.
“What about the window?” Ravenna asked as she slowly pushed the dresser into place.
Rosalie ran a hand through her hair as she thought about it. “We’ll just have to flip one the beds up against it.” She said at last.
“Yours is closest…”
Before Rosalie could protest Ravenna flipped the mattress on Rosalie’s bed and shoved it over to the window, while Rosalie awkwardly peered over the dresser through the peep-hole. The man had already reached the parking lot.
“I’m coming! This thing isn’t light ya know!” Ravenna grunted as she gave one last heave and moved the bed into place.
Rosalie stepped over to help her straighten it out and make sure it wasn’t going anywhere. Just as they finished propping up the bed they heard wild banging at the door. For fifteen minutes they stood there barely breathing until finally the noise stopped. Rosalie peeked around the bed and out the window.
“He’s gone.” She announced with a sigh of relief.
Ravenna let out a sigh of her own as she sat down on her bed. “Man, who was that guy?”
“I dunno, but whoever he is, he isn’t friendly.”
“Friendly?! He bit me! The fucker bit me! Oh my god, I’m gonna get rabies! I’m gonna die! Dude, I’ve been drinking, my blood’s gonna be thin and it’s not gonna clot and I’M GONNA DIE!!” Ravenna shouted, working herself up into a frenzy.
Rosalie smacked Ravenna across the back of the head. “Calm down you idiot! You don’t have rabies and you aren’t gonna die! Now we just gotta calm down and figure this out.” She said decisively before taking a few deep breaths as if to lead by example.
Ravenna tried it. “Calm down. Calm….down.” She said, coaching herself through it. “Ok. I’m calm. Now…Where’s the booze?”
Rosalie did her very best not to roll her eyes and sigh. She managed, but barely. “There isn’t any. You drank it all last night, remember?”
“What?! Oh my god! I’m gonna die, I’m gonna die. WE’RE GONNA DIE! Oh my god I’m gonna die in a room trapped without booze!” Ravenna flailed, her shouts turning quickly to whimpers.
Rosalie grabbed Ravenna by the shoulders and struggled to sit her down in the nearest chair. As soon as Rosalie moved away to get the first aid kit, Ravenna tried to stand up. Noticing Ravenna’s escape attempt, Rosalie returned and sat her back down. “Sit.” She ordered.
“But I can’t! I just got bit by some freaking psychopath! You can’t expect me to just sit here!” Ravenna countered, trying to stand again so she could express herself better with more flailing.
“Yes I can. Now hold still so I can bandage you up.” Rosalie replied firmly, shoving her friend back down into her seat.
“Oh ok.” Ravenna caved, grumbling her assent.
Rosalie cleaned the wound with antiseptic first—to Ravenna’s extreme delight—then quickly bandaged it up. After cleaning up the table, Rosalie put away the first aid kit, made a quick pit stop, and then headed back to where Ravenna sat mumbling to herself, clutching her shoulder. Rosalie handed Ravenna the remaining two drinks from the six-pack that she’d thrown into the mini-fridge. “Here, drink this.”
“OH! We’re saved! My dear sweet friends…” Ravenna walked to the corner of the room clutching her coolers, sat down, and happily began to drink.
“Well she’s useless…” Rosalie murmured to herself as she picked up her laptop and switched it on. She then settled herself in at the small table for what was surely to be a long, long night.