“You know, when I said you should take me out more, this is not what I had in mind,” Salib says, taking the last sip of her latte and rolling her eyes.
“Well, It’s not like I enjoy taking my kid sister to a bar. Especially not dressed like that.” Borjas tosses out and unbuckles his seat belt. Salib gives him her best fake laugh and follows his lead.
Borjas shakes the numbness from his hands and envies Salib’s fire dragon blood. He rubs his hands for a brief second, trying to catch some heat, then walks over to the line of humans cuffed and sitting on the wall outside of the bar.
“You boys just hang out here.” Borjas snickers.
“You just couldn’t help yourself, could you?” Salib says, pushing him in the bar.
This was one of the better bars downtown that catered to the rougher crowd. Plenty of pool tables, a nice size dance floor, and a Full restaurant were among the reasons it was so popular. This was definitely not the first time Borjas had been here at El Corazon Salvaje.
The Bartender looked about as frustrated as he could get—one of his busiest nights ruined due to the slight inconvenience of a murder investigation. Borjas could tell that he’d been through a lot. His posture and tone gave away that he’d been at this for a couple of hours. It is to be expected. Beat cops had no idea that it was bad for business to question a witness for so long. They asked and until they got an answer. But it didn’t do any good to drill a bartender in a downtown bar on the weekend. They have enough trouble keeping up with their live patrons to be concerned with the dead ones. Borjas takes this opportunity to relieve the Bartender.
“Take a hike. I’ll take it from here,” Borjas says, tapping the beat cop on the shoulder. The Beat Cop just nods then walks towards the exit.
“For the love of the Gods, now I have to start all the way over.” The Bartender says, grabbing a glass of scotch and taking a swig.
“A Demon walks into a bar, gets the wrong kind of attention. Instead of leaving, he presses his luck and gets into it with several humans that still hold a grudge against Demons. They take him out back, and things go a little too far, and there you have a murder on your hands.” Borjas says, pointing towards the tequila. The Bartender pours him a shot and slides it to him.
“If you know all of that, then why do you need to question me?” He says, looking confused and losing even more of his stock of scotch.
“Because if I didn’t take over, you’d still be answering questions. I know how it is. I’ve worked my fair share of bars, all sides. You can’t make out every single person and every single event. Not with a bar this size.”
“Where have you been all night? Me and my sanity could have used you about an hour ago.”
“Had to pick up my partner. Picked up some tacos on the way.” Borjas pats his stomach.
“So you were called on a murder scene, and you decided to grab dinner first?”
“What good would it do me to come hungry? Especially when it’s your favorite taco truck.” Borjas said waving to Salib.
“Now why would you say that if…,” The Bartender stops when he sees the little white bag with the chicken logo. “May the spirit of the Gods bless you!” He says, graciously taking the paper sack. “You even got me three pollo tacos with the sauce on the side. How’d you know?”
“I’m a rogue. We have our ways.”
“I used my astral sense to talk to the spirits around the truck. They see you there every day.” Salib says, going back to looking over the evidence.
“I have my ways,” Borjas laughs. The Bartender isn’t one to fuss and starts on his first taco.
“Now that I think about it, I do remember those boys giving that Demon a hard time,” he takes a healthy bite and does the work of chewing. His eyes have a bit of joy in them. “I remember telling them to leave him alone or take it outside. Despite what they look like, they’re good guys. A bit rowdy and a bit racist, but good boys.”
“I don’t think I’ve ever heard a racist and good guy in the same sentence before.”
“Well, they lost some of their folks to the Demon War, so I guess hostile to Demons would be a little more accurate. But I swear, those boys don’t have what it takes to kill anyone. They didn’t even go to war. They wussed out and came up with medical reasons why they couldn’t go fight.”
“But they can jump a Demon?”
“I mean, yea. Four of them, one of him, and he’s a civilian. That’s like bullying 101.” The Bartender says, in between sucking his fingers.
“Very true. No chance they took it too far by accident?”
“Nah, they get squeamish at the sight of blood. Carlos once cried when he cut his lip on a beer top.”
“To be fair, that’s not a good place to get cut.” Borjas stifles a laugh.
“Agreed, but I have plenty of patrons that come in here tougher than those boys. Some of them civilian women.”
“Hey, watch it with that kind of talk, Pal. I know some women stronger than most guys.”
“Yeah, like Xiao, but I’m talking normal nine to fivers.”
“I get your point. So how do you think we ended up with a dead Demon in your bar?”
“I have the faintest clue. But those boys didn’t do it. They don’t have it in them,” The Bartender said, sucking down the last taco.
“Well, that’s good to know. That in a bar full of people, the only four we have collars on, aren’t the ones who did the crime.”
“Sorry I couldn’t be more help, detective.” He says, passing down another shot of tequila. Borjas takes the shot and gives a salute.
“Don’t worry, if you were more helpful, then my job wouldn’t be as fun.”
Borjas walks across the bar to Salib, and when she gives that face of hers that’s full of frustration, he knows it can’t be good.
“It’s like these people never heard of crime scene protocol. This whole thing is so contaminated I don’t know where to begin.” She says, waving him over to her and taking him out back to the alley. Only due to them being veterans can they stand with such stench and not have to hold their noses. It’s more impressive that Salib can do it with her heightened senses.
A concoction of liquids, from alcohol to human waste, mix in the alley with the blood and the victim. The cold weather is finally working in their favor. But it can do little to help them construct what went down in the alley with all the cigarette buts, broken glass, and other disposables common to the back alleys of bars.
“Well, Mal, this is your thing. Maybe his spirit has some more details.” Borjas says, lighting up a cigarette.
“That’s what’s making me so angry. His spirit’s gone. Whoever did this either passed him along or worse.” For the first time tonight, Detective Borjas felt the frustration everyone else was feeling.
“For fucks sake.”
“Papi!” Isabelle screams, flying from her bed in the arms of Victor.
“Mija, what are you doing up? Aren’t you supposed to be in bed?” Victor says, smiling from ear to ear.
“When does that little girl does anything she’s supposed to? You made her this way.” Rosa says, tugging at the belt on her robe. That was their secret code so that Isabelle didn’t know what Mama and Papi were planning.
“Mija, are you going to answer my question?”
“I was waiting on you, Papi.” Her face is as innocent as the day they brought her home.
“I’ve told you, Mija. You can’t wait on Papi to come home from work every day. You need your rest to be a big strong woman someday.”
“But I need goodnight kisses?” Her voice melts him, but he doesn’t show it.
“Okay, one kiss, then off to bed.”
“Three and a half.”
“How does one do a half a kiss?” Victor says, confused.
“Like this!” She exclaims and kisses his cheek on alternating sides, then touches his nose with hers.
“Got it. Now off to bed.”
“But I didn’t get kisses.”
“You just did.”
“No, I showed you how to give kisses.”
“Mija.” His dad voice coming out.
“Bale, just one more?”
“Just one.” He gives her a final kiss.
“No hugs,” she says, pulling him in.
“Mija.” She giggles then pull tighter. He tickles her to get her off of him, then tucks her into bed. After a few more negotiations, he gives her two more kisses and another hug. He fusses that she got the five she asked for. But then she just smiles and grabs her stuffed otter.
They say their goodnights, then he and Rosa close her door. Taking a big sigh, they know that it’s a possibility that she could wake up again in the middle of the night, but that should give them enough time to tend to their needs. Victor picks Rosa up and begins kissing her on the way to their bedroom. She helps him strip off the work shirt and hat from the gas station he worked for a little extra cash.
Heavy with desire and not stopping for air, They make no stops to get to the bedroom. They have practiced this so many times that Rosa even knows where her hand goes to open the door, and he knows just how to close it back without slamming it.
Victor tosses her to the bed and unbuckles his belt, all the while watching her slowly reveal the sun-tanned beauty she concealed beneath. Both to their bare essentials, she leans forward and takes his wanting in her hands, and begins to work it back and forth. He bends to her touch and nearly caves to her tongue when it starts to work him.
“Mi Amor. Have I told you how you are the best husband in the world?”
“Si, Mi Corazon.” He breathes huskily.
“Not many men would work themselves the way you do for our family.”
“Tu es mi esposa. I’m supposed to provide for you,” his voice weakens the more of him she takes in her mouth.
“Pero, a lot of men would make their wives work if they needed extra money.” He takes his hand and pulls her hair so that she has no choice but to look at him in the eyes.
“Mi Vida, I promise before todos los dioses, I would love, honor, and protect you. That goes for any children as well. If our daughter needs surgery, then I will provide the money. You just find the doctor. Claro?”
“Claro, Papi.” She smiles at him and shows her need for him in her eyes.
“I can’t hear you?” He says, pulling harder. She moans and speaks a little louder this time. Swearing words of passion. He reaches down and fills her mouth with his tongue and squeezes at her breast until she bites her nails into his side. When they surface for air, she returns her hands to his rode and takes him in again.
Placing his hands on either side of her head, he releases a little of his magic to amplify her desire. The dark magic is absorbed by her skin, and when the magic mixes with her blood, her body only thirsts to satisfy both of their desires.
Many people ran from warlocks, but Rosa, she didn’t mind his powers at all. That’s why he would do anything to protect her and her… their child.
Even if it meant killing a Demon and harnessing his soul for more power.