Invaders From Another Space and Time

Genre stretch story for the month… Alien Invasion!  It was fun getting this to fit with the rest of the story.  Actually, the story is now complete.  I might end up using the rest of the genre stretch challenges to fill in the story a bit… or I might use them to start something entirely new.

**

He could hardly believe his luck.  Things were going so much better than he could have ever anticipated.  Not only did the chief of the peacekeepers believe that Pemberton was responsible for the murders, the werewolf was being implicated.  By the time he was through, both of them would be off the force.  Without work to keep him there, the werewolf would return to where he’d come from.  Perhaps the other interloper would leave as well.  Alternatively, he might be arrested and his powers bound.

Yes, all in all, things were going well.  He settled back to plan his next move, even as he awaited news that the two fugitives had been apprehended.  A loud crash sounded through the warehouse and he moved to his feet.  A part of him was screaming at him to leave.  However, he couldn’t help but wonder: just what could that possibly be?

Eileen paused as the magical signature led them to the dockside warehouse.  She turned to look at the two peacekeepers.  “He’s somewhere in here,” she said, her voice soft.  “The person who cast the spell at the crime scene is most definitely in this building.”

“He’s also behind the deaths of Mr. O’Neill and Master Nowell,” Ezra said, his voice soft.  His gaze drifted up the side of the building.  It looked like such a normal, unassuming place.  He could imagine it being filled with children’s toys or crates filled with dry goods.  What could the mastermind behind such terrible crimes be doing in such a place?

He was drawn out of his thoughts when Lachlan breathed a round curse, his voice low and husky.  “Lachlan?” he said, looking to his partner.  He frowned when he saw that his friend was shuddering and breathing heavily.  “Are you all right, Lachlan?”

“His scent,” Lachlan said, the words coming out as almost a growl.  He looked over at Ezra and his eyes were bright with something more than anger.  He growled again and Ezra could see that his teeth were sharp – like those of the wolf he became with each full moon.

“Lachlan?” Ezra said, his voice soft.  “What… what about his scent?”

“He was at the apartment,” Lachlan said.  He growled and turned to the building.  “He meant to kill us – me and my mate.”  With that, Lachlan released a sound like a roar of anger.  Then he threw himself at the door of the warehouse.  It shattered into splinters under the force of his attack and then Lachlan was barreling inside.

Cursing, Ezra and Eileen hurried in after him.  “He’s going to go full wolf,” Eileen said, her voice strained.  “We need to stop him, or he’ll rip the man apart before we can find out what his plans were!”

Ezra called after Lachlan, but it was obvious that his partner was not in a state to hear his words or make sense of what he was being told.  He moved with single-minded determination through the warehouse only stopping when a shadowy figure appeared in a doorway at the far side of the room.

“You,” Lachlan growled.

Gasping, Ezra did the only thing that he could do.  He raised his wand and summoned a sunlight charm, praying that it would be enough to keep Lachlan from completing his transformation into his wolf form.  A false sun shone down upon the four people in the warehouse, casting them all in harsh shadow.

Lachlan stumbled to a stop, as his countenance returned to normal.  He cast a glance back at Ezra and then looked at the man.  “Deputy Chief Strong?” he breathed, his widening in surprise.  “You?  But… why would you…” he trailed off, shaking his head.

“Why would I try to stop you from invading our department?” Deputy Chief Strong rasped.  He looked from Lachlan to Ezra.  “You think I don’t know what you are?  Neither of you is even human.  You think I don’t realize the truth, but you’re wrong!  I know exactly what you are – both of you – and I’m not the only one.  There are others and we’ll stop you!”

“What’s he talking about?” Eileen asked, scowling at Ezra.

Shaking his head, Ezra murmured, “I know that he doesn’t want Lachlan on the force because he’s a werewolf, but… I have no idea what he thinks I might be.”

“He’s mad,” Lachlan said.  He gasped when Deputy Chief Strong drew his wand.  “Chat later, fight now,” he said, ducking out of the way of a stunning charm.  He sighed in relief when Eileen and his partner both followed his example and hid themselves behind large crates.

He began circling around, even as Strong began exchanging fire with both of the wizards.  He didn’t have enough skill with magic to join in such a fight.  However, that didn’t mean he was helpless.

With a skill and agility borne of his unnatural form, Lachlan climbed up on top of the crates that formed the aisles of the warehouse.  He ran and leapt from one crate to the next, until he was just above Deputy Chief Strong.  Then, without hesitation, he dropped down on the man, knocking him to the ground.

Strong cried out in pain and surprise, but his wand had skittered across the floor when he’d fallen.  “Got him,” Lachlan called, as he pinned the struggling man to the floor and fought to pull his arms behind his back.  He gave Eileen and Ezra a wry smile when they peered around the boxes.

“A fine diversion, eh?” Ezra said, his eyes twinkling.  He tucked his wand back up his sleeve and drew out the communications device they used to contact headquarters.  In moments, he was calling for backup.

Lachlan finished getting Strong restrained and then pulled the man up to a seated position.  “What were you going on about, then?” he asked, shaking his head.  “Ezra’s a wizard, just as you yourself are.”

Strong laughed and shook his head.  “He’s not,” the man said, his eyes widening.  “He’s an alien!”

Eileen scoffed and sighed.  “He’s mad,” she murmured.  “There’s no such thing as aliens.  That’s just something the non-magical folks made up to explain things they don’t understand.”

Ezra nodded slowly.  “Clearly,” he said, his voice soft.  “Even if such things existed, whyever would a being from another world come here and become a peacekeeper, of all things?”

“The truth will come out,” Strong said, shaking his head.  “The others will tell everyone what you are!  You can’t keep it a secret from everyone!”

Shaking his head, Ezra sighed.  He glanced over at his partner.  “I’m going to meet them outside,” he said, his voice soft.  “I’ll tell them where to find Strong.”  When Lachlan nodded, he spun on his heel and turned away.

Once he was outside, he leaned his back against the building and drew out a small box that was very like the one he’d used to call for backup.  “My identity is secure,” he said, his voice faint.  “Strong sounds so insane right now that no one will believe his story of an alien invasion.”

“Good to know,” a lilting voice replied.  “Keep us appraised of your progress, Pemberton.”

“Will do,” Ezra said.  Then, he tucked the box away in the folds of his robes.  Shaking his head, he ruffled a hand through his hair.  That had all been just a bit too close for comfort.  What would he have done if Lachlan or Eileen had believed Strong’s rantings?

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