We reached the safe house at midnight, sixteen hours after we'd escaped what was left of the Memphis airport.

"Don't call it a safe house," said Freya. "They'll find us eventually. But it gives us time to find a cure. Or a weapon."

The air inside was humid, stale, with the faint smell of blood. Nobody slept. Light leaked through slashed velvet draperies, trickled through barred windows and locked doors. Small pajamas lay, shredded, upon stained beds; Chinese ideograms crawled, wavering lines of rust-red and acid green, down the walls of the master bedroom.

We didn't ask who had lived there before us.

-- ElizabethHardage - 06 Dec 2004