Anita settles to sleep on the couch (you could have phoned and asked the hotel for a cot to sleep in. They would provide it) with the gun under her pillow. She puts the safety on just in case, but normally she sleeps without it on, presumably to make it easier for the assassins I send to make it look like a suicide. She puts another gun under the sofa cushions and considers putting on her knife-wrist sheaths on. But no, that’d be too uncomfortable to wear knives to go to sleep in.
Knives. Sleep. How do you ever get to a point where knives are considered necessary sleep wear?
Anita tries to sleep but realises that she should probably let the FBI know about Xavier, the Exotic Child Molester Vampire. She pauses, thinking that the information that a crazy powerful vampire may have kidnapped a teenage boy could wait. Then she thinks the information may not be even helpful, and that since she’s not even welcome, she shouldn’t help.
Anita, I thought you were so hurt and dying inside from the knowledge that a boy may be getting raped while you could stop it. And yet, you think to help and immediately cast it out of your mind because no one likes you for being a bitch that got the boy kidnapped in the first place. And I am still supposed to like and sympathise with you?
First, Freemont had blackballed me; second, the Quinlans were threatening to sue everybody unless I was kept away from the case. I’d done such a bang-up job protecting their family, they didn’t want a repeat. They seemed to think I’d get their son killed. Fancy that.
Well, your actions led to Jeff Quinlan’s abduction. The Quinlans are justified in not wanting you near the case.
Anita finally settles her conscience and phones an FBI agent, giving them the very helpful clue of ‘Xavier’, no more no less. No description, no knowledge of where to find him, no last name. You see, ‘vampires don’t have last names, as a general rule’ and that triggers my ‘very angry historian buttons’. People believe in this bullshit that five hundred years ago people just did not have surnames, that they just had a first name or perhaps were known as Luke of Bradbury or other such crap. Sad to say, that is crap. People had surnames, mainly if they were involved in any legal business, like leases and contracts. You could be known as Luke of Bradbury, but you’d have a name because making out a mortgage to a vague description is silly.
The FBI agent wants to know where Anita got the name but she won’t say. He rightly tries to claim that she’s withholding evidence, but the problem dissolves. There are never any real consequences in the Hamilton universe.
Oh MY GOD
THE NEXT BIT
The FBI agent asks Anita about a private jet that landed last night, belonging to a private corporation that owns a lot of vampire related St. Louis businesses.
The private corporation is called the J.C. Corporation.
Are you kidding me? ‘The J.C. Corporation’? What are you, a child? Anyone could work that out! JC must have the brains of a child because I remember using the same kind of naming process when I was a child, playing with my dolls. The mother in my family of Barbies ran a corporation that operated under a different name so that her family life (dentist husband, three daughters and a son) (yes, I remember it all) and do you know what she called her business? The Barbie Barbie Corporation. Her family name was Barbie, so she added another Barbie to the end, thinking no one would be able to tell.
I was seven. SEVEN YEARS OLD. JC, you are centuries old. Within six months, I’d realised what a dumb name ‘The Barbie Barbie Corporation’ was and so I changed it. Congratulations, Mister Arch-Manipulator, a seven year old girl outsmarted you.
Anita starts to panic because she must lie to the FBI, even though they ought to be able to see through this brilliant name as if it were made of fucking air. She asks about the coffin, because she’s trying to hide JC by sounding panicky and interested, but the coffin, as ever, is missing. She denies any knowledge of the JC Corporation and is told to stay the fuck out of the case.
We hung up. I sat there for a minute, just letting it all sink in. If they found Jean-Claude in my room, what would they do? I’d seen the cops pop a comatose vampire in a body bag, transport it to the station house, and wait for nightfall to question it. I’d thought it was a bad idea because the vamp would wake up pissed. It did. I ended up killing it. I’ve always felt bad about that particular kill. It was an out-of-state job. The local cops invited me in to advise them. Once we found the vamp, they stopped listening to my advice. Reminded me of now. That vampire had also just been brought in for questioning.
I’m not sure what Hamilton is trying to say here. That we should feel bad for the vampire that woke up, decided it was okay to beat the hell out of some policemen, and was killed? That we should feel bad that no one listened to Anita because she wasn’t needed in the investigation as she’s not a police officer? That we should feel bad for the officers who were almost killed because a vampire decided it was okay to try and beat their heads in for doing their job? Poor police officers – dealing with vampires AND Anita.
Anita wishes she had her toy penguin.
What price machismo?
That sentence complete sense not.