Chapter 9 - Hurt
a/n: i realize i severely fail at updating. but here is the newest chapter! :) i hope you enjoy it.
The streets were surprisingly not packed today. Katie and Delaforte made their way through the streets in a comfortable silence. The weather wasn't necessarily cold but nor was it warm. The wind picked up and a chill ran through her body. She shivered, ever so slight, trying not to draw any attention to herself however; Delaforte noticed.
"My love, are you cold?" He asked, buttoning his coat up. Nice observation, Katie thought as she watched him button up his coat in envy. It wasn't that she was expecting him to give her his coat; she was just so used to Fred doing it.
"Yes," she said in a slightly bitter tone. The museum was up ahead to the left. "We're almost there anyway so it doesn't matter." She wrapped her arms around herself as they made their way up the steps. Delaforte opened the door and held it for Katie as she waked in. The warmth instantly hit her. Relief spread throughout her body and she let it take over. The museum was busier than usual. People were scattering all over the place; women dressed in their Sunday best and men with their fancy long overcoats and expensive hats. Why people dressed so fancy for places like this was something she'd never fully understand. Delaforte took her hand and she was taken away from her thoughts.
"Shall we?" He asked staring at a younger girl who was grinning at him. Katie rolled her eyes and started walking down one of the corridors. Pictures of famous dukes, kings, queens and others adorned the walls and others had coloured landscapes artists had seen or dreamt of. Paintings were like a whole new world to Katie; a mystery. Each picture asked a question: what was the author thinking at that moment?
"This is a rather grim painting." Delaforte exclaimed. Katie looked over and grinned. It was her favourite painting. There was a dark, dull room and in the corner sat a woman who looked as if the weight of the world had collapsed on her shoulders. Her eyes were full of sadness. One window was above her with a sun that shone so bright yet inside her house, inside her, it was the complete opposite. Her dress was dirty, stained and slightly torn and no shoes were upon her feet. She would admit that yes, it was grim, but it spoke to her in so many ways. "I don't like it." He added.
"Why don't you like it?" Katie asked as she stared at the girl.
"She's miserable. There's no explanation as to why. Dreadful painter, no creativity at all."
"You don't know that." Delaforte looked over towards Katie. She was still looking at the painting. "Sometimes there are unknown reasons as to why we're upset. The past is always with us and can show up unexpectedly. Maybe something happened to her. Perhaps the man she loved left her and took all of her, all of who she is, who she was, with him. Or maybe this is the life she was given. A life of cruelty, of despair. A sad life which she must lead alone. The outside is inviting but she doesn't want to be invited. Maybe she feels like no one would understand her if she went out there." She looked up at him. "Art isn't just about what is there. It's about finding that hidden message, looking for the story behind the painting or deciphering the tale the artist intended on leaving amidst the dreary edges of the paper." Delaforte said nothing. He simply stared at her, not knowing what to say. "Let's move upstairs?" She asked, growing uncomfortable under his stare, as she moved towards the large staircase. He followed her. Light shone brightly through the windows, illuminating the stairs with a triumphant glow. The stairs were made out of an old cream coloured marble, which sparkled like a thousand tiny diamonds, along with the rest of the building. Unlike the sparkle from the stairs, the walls were coated in a light layer of dust. A man brushed against Katie and apologized in a fast mutter. She watched him scurry out of the museum in quite a hurry.
"So tell me about this Frederick fellow I always see you with." Delaforte asked as he caught up to her.
"I've known him since I was a wee lass," she began "we've been friends our whole lives."
"Just friends?" He asked. Katie slowed the pack down so she could glance quickly at the paintings.
"Yes, God yes!" She quickly assured him. A grin snuck up upon his mischievous face.
"Is he married?" He asked. It seemed there was a lot he wanted to know about the dear inspector. Katie stopped walking. She didn't particularly like it when Victoria was brought up. It only reminded her of a friend lost and those awful months where she almost lost Fred to his own inner demons. "Is he?" She blinked and saw Delaforte staring at her, yet again, waiting for a response.
"No." She muttered while shaking her head. Her curly locks bobbed side to side as she strode past him. She did not notice the look of disbelief on his face, the look of something unknown that he would figure out soon enough. A smile crept upon his face; a mean, malicious smile. He'd figure it out, he thought, as he caught up with her.
"Let's go somewhere else." She suggested, desperately trying to change the subject.
"I'd love to my dear but I've just remembered a previous engagement that I must attend." He took her hand into his in one swift motion and planted a kiss on it. She smiled yet a puzzled look was in her eyes. "I shall hopefully see you again soon." Before she could ask any questions, he walked away in a fast pace. He was smiling to himself. Someone would be able to tell him about Fred. Sir Charles had let something slip; something about a prostitute and he had every intention of finding it out. As he stepped outside the sun blinded him and he had to pause for a moment on the top of the stairs. Where could he go? Who would tell him? He pondered this until his eyes had adjusted. He stepped down the stairs two at a time. A look of disgust grew upon his face as he thought about Fred. Ever since he was introduced to him he instantly did not like him. He held his coat tightly around him as he walked down the busy streets. The markets were open and unfortunately he had been caught in the middle of the busiest parts of the day. Sighing, he returned to his thoughts. It wasn't that he hated Fred, he didn't even know him. There was just something there, a certain aura he possessed that just drove Delaforte mad.
To escape the rush, he ducked down a narrow alleyway. It was darker than usual seeing as the sun was hidden by the giant buildings he was in between. The cobblestones on the street were cracked and not in an even pattern. Alcohol bottles were thrown across the alley in jagged pieces and a few people were lying against the wall in an inebriated state. He picked up the pace as he suddenly felt a rush of panic surge throughout his body. He took a deep breath when he was finally out amongst everyone again. He was in the downtown area of Whitechapel. Most places had the most extravagant things downtown but not in Whitechapel. The population of this area were the drunks, the whores and the rampant fools who come alive in the middle of the night. The children of the night, of the darkness, as many called them. Some say a new town, a different kind of town, came alive at night; others saw no difference. That's when it hit him. If anyone could tell him about Fred, it would be one of the unfortunates! He rummaged through his mind to arrange a plan and with that same cruel smile he held earlier, he devised it and walked off back to his sleeping quarters until night fell and the children, that worshiped it so well, came out to play.
Fred Abberline sat with his feet propped onto his desk, a case file in his hand and a sour look on his face. Tyler Hounds– Age 49 – Serial Rapist. Medium build, brown hair, blue eyes, a light scruff on face and neck, scar in the shape of a hook under his right eye. First occurrence happened the night of… he put the file down and looked out the window. There was no way he could concentrate. Not when she was still out with him. No one else could see if but Fred sensed it; he was trouble. And she was out with trouble. Two hours they'd been gone and every moment drove him wilder. What antics was he pulling with her: his phoney laughter, his fake smile or his disgusting kiss on the hand? Fred was not pleased. That wasn't the only thing on his mind. Carrie was still out there and he hadn't heard from her in days. Fred's optimism was shot at the moment; only the worst was on his mind. He wasn't going to wait any longer. As soon as she got a hold of him, the plan was going into action.
It astounded him how a man of such high power, of such prestige, would do something so vile and pathetic. Carrie had been coming to him when she was about 16. Her father had started off by groping her as she walked past, that turned into touching her at night when no one could hear her, and that turned into rape. Every night she'd wait up; it was easier that way, she told him, that way she knew when it was about to happen. She wasn't taken away from her peaceful dreams and back to reality. For three years now, Fred remained powerless; conflicted by the law with no way of finding a loop hole…until now. With the help of Katie and Godley, he'd get her out of there. All he needed was the perfect distraction and the utmost accurate timing. It had to work. Knock knock. Fred jumped.
"Come in!" He shouted. He held his hands behind his back and looked at the people below him momentarily.
"Someone's here tah see yah." Godley said in a hushed tone. His first thought was Katie but why would Godley whisper that? He turned around and saw a small figure hidden underneath a shawl. Godley closed the door and motioned for the person to reveal herself. Small, girlish hands slowly pulled the shawl down and Cassie's face appeared. She was smiling which was a rare sight in Abberline's mind.
"Mr. Abberline!" She exclaimed. She ran over to him and threw her arms around his neck. He put his arms around her for a second and held her back. Before he could even ask, she answered his question. "No, no one saw me come in." He smiled for a split second.
"Lock the door, Godley." He commanded. Godley nodded and did as he was told. He pulled a curtain down over the window of the door and now they had privacy. Fred sat on his chair again and pulled out a pack of cigarettes. "Where have you been staying?" Always straight to business in situations like this. He used the candle that was flickering out on his desk to light his smoke and he inhaled the nicotine. It surged throughout his body and he relaxed.
"I'm staying at a little inn off near the docks. It's lovely there. The ocean is so gorgeous at night and I can see it from my room." She was glowing for the first time in years. Fred couldn't help but smile. He was going to make sure that from now on she had a radiant glow to her.
"How would you like to travel across the ocean…get away from here for good?" He asked. Her eyes widened at the offering. Godley coughed in the background and sat on the window bench. She looked from Godley to Fred and repeated this twice.
"I would love it!" Her smile faltered instantly. "But…how will we get away from my father? He's been looking for me, Fred. I don't want you to get into trouble." Fred shook his head.
"Don't worry about that. We have a plan, my darling." She was listening eagerly. "Tomorrow when it's late out, Katie is going to head to the ten bells and distract your father while Godley and I help you break into your house to get all your things together. After that, there will be a ship waiting to take you away. I'm not too sure as to where but its better then here, Cassie. Are you okay with this?"
"All I've ever wanted as to get away, Mr. Abberline." Her eyes started to well up with tears. "Thank you so much…all of you." Fred took a drag of his cigarette and watched the smoke disappear as he blew it back out.
"You don't need to thank us. All I ask is that you remain safe and write me as often as you can." He winked at her and she smiled again.
"I can do that." She assured him. Fred side smiled and took out a pencil and a sheet of parchment.
"I need to know where you're staying." He pushed the parchment towards her and she wrote down all they needed to know. "Now, Cassie, you need to leave. Go back there and get a lot of rest. If something goes wrong you'll need all the energy you can get. We'll come by tomorrow around ten o' clock."
"I'll be waiting." Cassie stood up and grabbed her belongings. As soon as she was unrecognizable, she fled the building in a hurry.
Fred finished his cigarette and put it out in the fireplace behind him. Godley watched him. Fred stared right back. "Yes, sergeant?"
"Do you think we can pull this off?" His tone of voice was serious.
"We have to." Fred stated simply. "This is something we cannot fail at it; this can't be another Ripper case." They both sat in silence. The ripper case had affected them both and neither one enjoyed bringing it up. No words could be said when it happened to appear in conversation.
"You didn't ruin the case, Fred. If anything you were the reason it was solved." Fred nodded to shut him up. Godley sighed. This was beginning to grow into a routine for the two. Fred didn't believe he'd helped. Sir Charles kicked him off and because of him another innocent person was murdered. They did catch Jack the Ripper though. Sir William Gull, a reputable physician of the Royal family, was the one they called The Ripper. A man trying to cover a dark family secret by any means necessary…even murder. The man was now sitting, naked, in an insane asylum. No one knew that Fred has visited him a few times. He needed to see the man who had killed so many, the man who had taken part of his life away…the man who had ruined any chance he had left with Mary Kelly. Those times were over though; he had indeed moved on from Mary Kelly.
"You should let Katie know what's going on tomorrow evening. You also need tah find her a dress." Godley informed him.
"Well," Fred stood up and walked over to his coat. He slung his arms through it and began to button it up. "You can take care of the dress part, I'll take care of the informing part." Godley didn't argue.
"I've got to talk to those bleedin' woman…" Although, he liked to complain. "I'll bring it tah you're house tomorrow." Godley stood up and both men walked out together. Fred locked his office and joined Godley for the walk outside.
"I'm not too fond of this." Fred told him. "What if something happens to Katie? I don't want her put in this situation." Godley hobbled down the stairs.
"I promise yah Fred, she'll be fine! That ol' fiery Irish spirit will protect her." Fred nodded but still wasn't convinced. Godley pushed the doors open and both men were hit by the chill autumn air. "Fuckin' freezing I tell yah…" He put his hands into his coat pockets and made his way in the opposite direction. Fred turned down the street and made his way towards Katie's house. Instead of going the usual way though, he went down an old, familiar street. Victoria used to work in a shop on this street. Every day for lunch, he'd meet her at work. It was the favourite time of his day. Seeing her made everything better. Work wasn't always pleasant especially with some of the cases he received. He and Victoria would walk down the streets and she'd listen to him vent and he'd do the same in return. He passed her old work and stared in the window. He closed his eyes and saw a vision of her. She was standing there, smiling, and serving a customer. He never wanted to open his eyes but alas, his visions weren't always so nice. She disappeared so fast he didn't even believe he'd actually seen her.
"Look out." Someone yelled at him. He turned around and saw an angry old man coming up from behind him. "Whats tha matter with yah? Yer gonna get hit standing like tha' in the middle of the street."
"Thank you." Fred responded politely and continued on with his walk to Katie's. Hopefully she was home by now and not out with that pompous moron. Every one of those bloody cunts drove his blood to boil and here was his best friend gallivanting across town with one. The wind began to pick up but thankfully he had arrived at her house. He knocked. No answer. He waited, counted to five and knocked again. He heard a small crash inside and grew concerned. His hand was hovering above the door but it was pulled open.
"Frederick!" Katie was smiling quite largely. "Come in, it's freezing outside. This isn't autumn weather at all!" Fred stepped inside.
"Indeed, my dear." He unbuttoned his coat slowly and threw it on the couch. "How was your day with Delaforte?" He asked pronouncing his name like venom. Katie shrugged.
"Nothing too eventful happened. He got different towards the end." Katie looked up at Fred. "He just left abruptly. He was quite interested in you." She turned on her heels and walked down the hallway. Fred furrowed his eyebrows and followed her.
"Me?" He asked. Her hallway was dark but he could see the faint image of her body walking towards her study. When she opened the door, light shone vividly out of it. She disappeared into the room.
"Yes!" She called out to him. He stepped into the room and sighed. There was stuff everywhere. Katie wasn't the neatest person and it drove Fred crazy most of the time. "I don't know why but he just kept asking question after question after question." She tucked a piece of her hair behind her ear and studied some papers in her hand. Her hair was flowing down in rapid waves and the light made her hair glow a vibrant red. The white dress she wore clung to every curve on her body and her neckline was high. Fred couldn't imagine her in an unfortunates dress nor did he want too.
"What did he ask?" Katie was shaking her head and cursing under her breath. "Katie?"
"What?" She asked looking up at him. "I'm sorry, I didn't hear you."
"What did he ask?" A look grew in her eye but she looked away fast.
"Just how I knew you and all that…" She wouldn't look at him; her back suddenly turned to his.
"What else, Katie?" She turned back around.
"Oh, nothing." She mumbled as she picked up her glowing turtle. She tossed it from palm to palm. Fred was looking at her and she sighed as she made eye contact with him. "He asked if you were married." He nodded slowly. Oh Victoria, he thought. He didn't need to say anything. Katie knew. In an instant, her arms were around him.
"It's alright, Fred." She whispered as she rubbed his back in a soothing motion. "I promise you I said nothing." He held onto her and buried his head in her hair.
"I know." He muttered. His eyes closed and he repressed; he quickly just bottled everything up and pulled away from Katie. "Now, we need to talk about tomorrow." She frowned.
"Frederick…" She began. He cut her off.
"It's about Cassie." Katie wanted to continue but she let Fred go on. "Tomorrow, I'll need you to act like a…unfortunate." She nodded to his dismay. He was hoping she'd change her mind. "That brings me to my other topic: you don't need to do this."
"Oh god." She rolled her eyes.
"Darling, I don't want you hurt!" He stated. She walked over to her table and scrimmaged though some papers. "You're not listening to me, are you?" She smiled at him.
"Not at all…ah ha! Here it is!" Fred walked over to her and looked at what she found.
"What does it say?" It was in an old language that was unreadable to him.
"It's talking about where the book is. The words here are "underground water tunnel" and this is "two men who were the Flavian brothers". I'm getting closer Fred." Her voice was distant. It usually got like this when she talked about things she'd find. "Pretty soon, it'll be in my hands…unless it's a sham." Her tone dropped.
"I believe in you." She looked up at him. "I always have." They stood their momentarily, losing themselves into one another until Fred realized what was going on. He coughed and picked up the turtle. "What do you suppose this is?" He asked.
"I have no idea yet. That little turtle is a pain in the ass." She muttered. "I've looked everywhere in my scrolls for what he'd lead to or what he is but he's no where. I can barely understand the other scrolls and with my luck, the answer will be in one of those!" She plopped herself down in a defeated manner. Fred scanned some of the papers.
"Turtle. It says so right there." She twisted her head in his direction and jumped up. In a second, she was by his side. "Look, this word right there means turtle. It's one of five words I know in Latin and that scroll my dear is in Latin." She stared at the scroll and then looked up at Fred.
"You are a gift from up above, you know that?" She marked the scroll with ink and put it in a very special spot. "Enough of all this work business, would you like a cup of tea?" She asked.
"I'd love some. And for some conversation, any way I can talk you out of this whole dangerous situation tomorrow?" He asked, following her laughter out of the room. There was no way he'd be winning this battle.
a:n: so there it is! chapter nine. I've got a lot of ideas for the next chapters so I'm really excited! And I still want Fred in my pants SO bad.
Fred: -_- Josephine...
Me: Fred, honestly, can you blame me?
Jack: I can...how do you find THAT attractive?
Me: HOW DO YOU NOT? Besides, he is you.
Jack: :O BLASPHEMY! -runs away shouting- REVIEW, SAVVY?