Lindsey was safe, at home with Sam and Lily. Catherine hadn't wanted to leave her, but she had to do something. The business card was in her hand. She had to know what it was all about. So here she was, yet again, in front of a building that contained some of Vegas' darkest fantasies. She waited for the door to open. When it did, the unforgettable woman who opened the door inclined her head ever so slightly. "Hello again, Ms. Willows, I've been expecting you." She moved aside, "Please, come in."
They walked down the ornate and opulent halls. "I am glad that you will not be joining my little circle."
Catherine nodded and held up the card. "You mean 'Never Forget'." The dominatrix nodded.
Lady Heather led her to a large and darkly beautiful sitting room. She took a seat and crossed her leather clad legs. "After my little...outburst" Catherine gave her a dubious look. If horse-whipping the man who'd killed her daughter in the middle of the desert was an outburst, Catherine would hate to see Lady Heather's version of "pissed off". The woman continued, "I found myself at a loss. I went to grief counselors and psychologists. One man had the audacity to suggest that my lifestyle is a cry for help." She flicked her hand in the air, as if dismissing an insect. "Obviously, they were no help. Some time later I heard about a man whose daughter had been found in the chimney. Since you worked the case, I will not bore you with the details. I sought him out, and so it began."
Lady Heather's moss green eyes looked distant and were filled with pain. "Even after justice is served, there is still much to deal with, loss and emptiness to go through. There are so many, just here in Vegas, who have lost so much."
Catherine nodded, "And you help them?" The other woman fixed her haunted green eyes on Catherine, "We help each other. There are things that most do not understand about these investigations. Forensics for example, the how and the why of what the police does. How to handle the press, plan the funeral, there is so much to do and one only has the energy and ability to deal with so much before they can go no further."
Catherine nodded and then the full blow of the other woman's words hit her. "The press? You were the one leaking things to the press?" Lady Heather actually smirked. "As I've said before, I have clients and connections every where in Vegas. A few phone calls here and there. I wanted to make sure that no one would ever forget this monster, this demon that plagued Vegas. Surely you understand? How is your daughter?"
Catherine sighed, "She's coping." Lady Heather nodded, "And Miss Sidle, I heard she is recovering." Catherine nodded. "She is. Of course you knew that. You turned Sara into Vegas's own hero and the Mayor, Sheriff and Ecklie into the three stooges." Lady Heather shrugged, "The truth is not always pretty but it is better then a lie. If someone would have listened to Miss Sidle, well much would have gone differently." She paused for a moment and tapped a manicured nail against her blood red lips. "I've always wanted to meet Miss Sidle, especially now. She is very talented from what I hear." Catherine nodded, "She's the best." Before, perhaps, she would have been put off by this conversation. By hearing a complete stranger sing Sara's praises. Now, though, Sara deserved it.
Lady Heather shook her head. "I honestly don't know how you missed this, Ms. Willows." Catherine shook her head, "Catherine, please." Lady Heather smiled, "Catherine, then. I worked very closely with your lab in all this. Getting information, explanations of your work to share with the others." At Catherine's blank stare, Heather rose. "Come, I'll show you."
Catherine stared at the papers and booklets that Lady Heather had procured. There was no doubt that these were from the Crime Lab...but there was something off.
Lady Heather smiled, "Mr.Milgiss has been very helpful, as you can see." Catherine nodded, there was something she didn't share with Lady Heather, though. Not over tea, not as she left. The knowledge sank in when she returned to her car though. There was no RobertG. Milgissat the Las Vegas Crime Lab. When one rearranged the letters of the name though, it became clear exactly who Lady Heather's mysterious never-seen benefactor was.
Gilbert Grissom was still very much in the velvet and leather grasp of his dark Lady.
Gil Grissom watched the fiery sun set over the desert city. The light faded away in the shadows and darkened the alley ways. The city, lit by neon was a haven for sin and evil during the night. With the sunrise, in hours time would come the knowledge that for the moment, the demons of Vegas were silent.
For the moment, the blood thirsty demons were sated...but at what cost? The cost this time...had been too high. Once, long ago, a younger, less jaded Gil Grissom might have thought that there was no line he wouldn't cross to bring down those who diseased society, the killers and the rapists who plagued his city. Now, as an older, wiser man, he knew. The line had been crossed. The demons had been silenced, but at the cost of little Lindsey's innocence and Sara's blood. Too high a price. The worst part was that the demons would rise again, they always did.
Madison Daniels had been evil. He was not a man that was especially given to placing that label, but there was no other word for her. He'd read the reports, Dr. Parker's psychological evaluation, Dr. Robbin's Autopsy report. Had she been insane? While they would never truly know for sure, he tended to think that she was not. She had known what she was doing. She was the worst kind of killer. She had been twisted and then had gained power. What had twisted her like that? He could not be quite sure. The profile suggested that her parents had tried to force perfection out of her...then she'd somehow contorted the facts. That deep in her brain, something had snapped. It would have happened when she was a teenager, but the reports were unclear. They had looked through her private things, journals dating back decades. Her parents had been supportive and loving, Madison had just, for lack of better words, been a bad seed. She had, from the time she'd started keeping the records, been disturbed. In her high school years, she had manipulated fellow students and teachers alike. In college she had slept with the Dean for her place as Valedictorian. After college she had carefully plotted the death of her parents. Then, tragedy had struck and she'd found out that she could not have children. That marked the true beginning of her sickness. While the precise root of it was unknown, Grissom suspected that it might have been connected with her grandmother who had constantly pounded a young Madison with lectures and lessons about being a proper lady. It was all very confusing, and very incomplete. Madison Daniels was quite dead, but her evil lived on. For that alone, he damned her to the hell where he was sure she must be burning at. If there was indeed a God, and he still sometimes believed that there was, surely he had condemned her for her many, many sins.
No matter how much pain and suffering, how much blood and tears...they always came back. Evil flocked to Vegas every day. He, along with his team and countless others who worked for the LVPD stood against them. Like the few Christian knights defending the last strong hold against the all-mighty Turks. They stood in the sun, waiting for the demons to attack again, waiting to push the evil back once more. He had said many times that he only collected evidence; he was a liar. He was a CSI, a protector. His job wasn't just to follow the evidence; his job was to hold back the monsters that preyed on the innocent.
This time he had failed. He had not protected those he held dear. Sara was recovering, though it would be months before she could return. Lindsey was faced with the daunting knowledge that she, at age fourteen, had killed a man and Vegas was reeling from the events that had transpired.
Las Vegas, Nevada, home to all of the seven deadly sins, among many, many others, began a new night. It was a dark abyss where drugs, sex and murder were far more common then jackpots. Demons of the worst kind, those parading around in human form, once again began to feed off the corrupt buffet of Las Vegas.
Despite the darkness, though, there was light. Lovers watched over their partners, hands clasped together. Mothers comforted their children, chasing away nightmares. Friends stood watch over the fallen. Even in the land that lust had built, there was love. There were also the protectors, the chosen few who stood against the demons, holding them at bay. The battle would rage on, as it had since man had first become what he is. Good and Evil, Light and Darkness, Love and Hate, Man versus Man, Man versus self and Man versus Demon. The outcome is never certain, only the knowledge remained. The demons would keep coming.
Author's Note: Here we are, at the end of another tale. I hope everyone enjoyed reading it, I definitly enjoyed writing it. We finish up with Lady Heather making the big time come-back I've been salivating over for a while. I knew at the begining that this was when she was going to be returning, but it's been hard to hold off. Get used to her presence and 'NeverForget'because she will be playing a rather large role in the next story.
There are some thanks to go out: HoneyLynx86, my beta reader, is the best and the story would not have been as good as it is without her coming behind me and fixing things here and there.
Big thanks to icklebitodd, El Gringo Loco, bene, Tha Gurl Next Door and anyone else who reviewed. The constant stream of praise and critique really kept me going.
Unfortunatly, due to circumstances slightly beyond my control, I will be taking a hiatus and won't be writing or posting...or in contact at all. It could be days,weeks, or it could be months, I'm not sure. When I do get back, though...
Coming Soon: Gods of Vegas, Part III of III
When terror strikes at the heart of Vegas, the CSIs have to track down the root of the problem before it's too late. The explosive case will grab the LVPD by the throat, taking one of their own and putting the world on it's toes. Set against a backdrop of political rivalry, old flames, new passion and a dark newcult, everything can and will change for the CSIs.