[Don’t miss the Music treat at the end. This story will be posted in full after the Challenge for those of us that like to read everything in one complete telling,]
VENDETTA – Tuesday 1 p.m.
Vague visions vex me as they vanish. Memories return as Kama kisses me.
“You fainted, cariad. You need more time to recover.”
She’s kneeling on the grass with my head in her lap. She caresses my face.
“No. We haven’t got time. I fear what Lagens väktare means.” I look up at Ffion and Uthyr, their brows creased. “I need to go online. On my sister Gwawr’s computer.”
We sprint to the house and I sign to my deaf sister.
Upstairs in her room, the four of us squeeze behind Gwawr as she types Lagens väktare into Google Translate.
“Guardians of the Law”
“Above the law. Vigilantes. That’s their motivation. And my hyper-active tattoos are screaming Arms.”
“Explosives?” asks Ffion. “Like they used on your boat? Or guns?”
“The canisters were not tall enough for long weapons,” says Kama. “But disassembled ones, handguns, or components would be a viable guess.”
Uthyr waves me to the doorway. I trust my sister, but guessing she can lip read, Uthyr asks, “Should we talk outside?”
“Gwawr’s my trusted researcher – and my late tad knew that – as does Ffion. She knows more than mam-“
“-About you and Kama as well?” His smile eases my racing pulse. “Yes, I suspected when I arrived. You make a great couple and my unit would validate that.”
As they look over at us, we call the others over and suggest grabbing tea or coffee and sitting outside.
Drinking as we sit on the wooden bench overlooking the farm, I attempt to relax. This is almost home – this working farm. The sound of sheep. The glistening water where Kama and I swam before not making love. Better to dive in again to banish the nightmare.
Utkin. Xander Utkin.
“Ffion, does Vivian’s personnel file show any relationship to Xander Utkin, the guy Kama and I put away for arson, earlier this year?”
Our DI closes her eyes. A long pause when I wonder if this thread is coincidence.
“Vivian admitted Xander was her brother when she applied to join CID, three months ago. However, she was estranged from him and said he deserved to be locked up.”
“Any sign that she feels that we are too soft on crime?”
“None. Like all of us she sympathizes with the victims. Works tirelessly to resolve cases. I suspect that’s one of the reasons that Wiley-“
“-Obsesses about her,” says Kama. “Those two are inseparable. Perhaps another team.”
Perhaps vigilantes. Or are they virtuous?
“Their follow-up on your deaths,” says Ffion, “has been exacting and sensitive.”
V for Vigilantes or Virtuous. E for Exacting and Explosives.
A mobile phone rings. Uthyr’s.
“Varley.” He listens, one hand rubbing his neck. “On the move? Which direction?” He nods then glances at his watch. “I’m forty minutes away at least. Follow them and keep me informed.” He snaps his phone closed.
“ Njörðr Hämnaren has cast off?” I ask. “Heading where?”
“East. Possibly towards Liverpool so outside the NWP’s operational area. But not my Marine Unit’s. If necessary, I’ll contact our colleagues at Merseyside Police. We’ll continue monitoring the transponder signals. Ffion, your team must find the vermin that think they are above the law.”
M for Merseyside and Monitor.
Uthyr leaves us strategizing beside the llyn.
“If we’re to draw them out,” says Kama. “Sparkle and I are the prime bait and-“
“-Your usual jeopardy approach,” says Ffion. “Last time nearly got you both killed.”
“Nearly is not stopping me. Fainting was just a memory recall device – that worked.”
Like my tingling tattoos.
W for Weapons. A for Arms. E for Explosives. S for Strategy.
V for Vendetta. Ours.
WAVES. Staggering ashore having survived the watery nightmare. Where?
“Sparkle and I must return to Aberdaron Bay and drown again.”
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“Music hath charms to soothe a savage breast, to soften rocks, or bend a knotted oak.” William Congreve – The Mourning Bride