Disclaimer: I do not nor ever have owned anything of the Dresden Files universe. This is a fan fiction made for my enjoyment and the enjoyment of others, not/never for profit. Also I don't own anything
(A/N): Ok, wow, I would like to thank all those who reviewed; I really appreciate what some of you said.
Well here's the second chapter, this is more of an explanation of why SI has changed so much. I kinda don't like these first chapters, but I need to get them out of the way so every one knows the score. So no real cases yet, probably in a chapter or two. But stick with me I already have a few ideas for first few cases.
Life in SI
Chapter 2: Disbelief
Raising a doubtful eyebrow Alex asked, "And the big cause for all the unexplained is …?"
Leaning in conspiratorially Lupo whispered, "Magic."
"Magic," Alex dead paned, clearly waiting for the punch line.
Smiling Lupo leaned back and got up, "God I love that look," Lupo chortled under her breath as she walked over to the projector controls, "that 'you have got to be shitting me' look, ah, this is going to be fun," turning back to Alex she said in a louder voice, "Alright here's the deal, we're going to pretend that this is a case, I'll present the evidence you just sit there, shut up and listen, think you can do that?"
Realizing that whatever deity that Alex had apparently pissed off wasn't going to let him go any time soon, he set he face into a look of pained annoyance and simply nodded.
"Good, no leaving until I'm done, no interruptions and no questions till I say so, you can consider all of those orders," Lupo said, regaining her air of instructor to the slow, "Okay, I'm go to say this slowly so you have time to actually accept it, MMMAAAGGGIIICCC IIISSS RRREEEAAALLL, it actually exists in this day and age. No doubt you're wondering 'sure it is, then why haven't I seen it' and the answer is you have, it's been on TV the papers, and it's always turned into a hoax because no one wants to accept that there are things like wizards, vampires, elves, werewolves, and the like."
At this Alex could only snort.
Smiling, knowing that this would only make her final bit of evidence better said, "What did I say about interrupting me," Lupo said, shutting Alex up, "Now where was I, ah yes," advancing the projector to show a silver pentagram bound in a circle, "where does SI fit into all this. Well this might surprise you but SI doesn't just answer to Chicago, we are also, in some regards under the auspices of the White Council of Wizards."
At this Alex had had enough; the joke had gone on long enough. "What," he objected, jumping to his feet, "You mean to tell me, you actually expect me to believe, that this entire Division is under the command of another group of people? Magical people? Wizards? I'm sorry but this joke isn't funny any more."
"That's twice you've interrupted me," Lupo said in a dangerous voice, "Are you sure it wasn't insubordination that landed you here? So. Sit. Down."
Glaring, Alex slowly sat back down.
"Good, now shut up and pay attention because I'm going to most likely answer all your questions, or," Lupo said smirking, "we could go get those papers from the Lieutenant and I get the rest of the day off."
The remark was only answered by an angry glare.
"No? Oh well," Lupo shrugged, "Now to get back on track, yes we in the SI are under the Council in some regards. The Council is made up of the most powerful human magic users on the planet. These people can level mountains and call down lightning, so it's generally not a good idea to piss one off," pressing a button a form of a man shooting out a two yard long gout of fire.
"Now normally they would try to keep regular people from knowing about the magical world and its inhabitants, not to mention they would likely try to disband such a public organization like SI. What we have going for us that basically forced the Council to accept us was three fold. First and foremost was that Chicago is located directly on top of a large magical nexus of ley lines, whether all that was there before the city was founded or was caused because the city was founded, I have no clue. What I do know is that it draws in all the creepy crawlies and keeps us busy. It also makes us something of a magical transport hub.
"The next thing that helped was that we got the backing of a local Warden, that's sort of the Councils version of cop slash soldier slash judge, closest title you might be familiar with is 'Paladin'. Any way this Warden had been helping the SI for over a decade and vouched for our 'heh' competence in dealing with magical threats.
"And the last and probably most important thing that caused them to realize is that they needed us was that they just got out of a war with the Red Court of Vampires and need the man power to hold down all the critters that were trying to make Chicago a buffet, and ruin afore mentioned transit lines" looking over to a clearly agitated Alex, "question?"
"A war? I would think that the world would notice a war, even if it did have 'vampires'," Alex scoffed.
"This wasn't a straight up war, with battle lines, and grand battles. This was a secret war, one of ambushes and stealth, small skirmishes really, where the few big battles were rare and lasted no more than two to three days and then neither side fought each other for months, if not years, after. Coupled to the fact that most of either side's strong holds were in remote, isolated places that could only be easily accessed through magical means, it's quite easy for the world to ignore a quite war" Lupo explained.
"Now as I was saying this war left the Council short handed, hell they drafted even the most minor practitioners that would normally deal with the little ghoullies, not to mention that Chicago is just rife with places where the less than friendly members of the magical community can set up unnoticed, all leading to a record year of disappearances. I bet you remember that year, right Cobs," Lupo asked.
"Sure that was when a group on nut cases went on a kidnap spree, never did find all those people," Alex replied.
"Well that's no exactly true," said Lupo in a slightly somber tone, "We know what happened to those people and they didn't go missing, not really, they became dinner. The ones we found and released were the better preserve ones I guess you could say. We really weren't going to return people's loved ones that had been put through a couple digestive systems. There really wasn't much left anyway."
"People were eaten? You're shitting me right," asked Alex.
"No Detective Cobsman I am not," Lupo's instantly getting steely, "That was my first year in the Division, and something that will stay with me forever. Now," said Lupo collecting herself, "that is the very reason why we need the Council, it allows us protection under the Unseelie Accords, it allows us access to things, people, and places we would never get acting outside it. And as such the members of SI are viewed as Deputy Wardens, we get almost all the rights and privileges of a Warden, save we can't judge and execute a dark Wizard."
"Execute," Alex exclaimed.
"Interrupting," Lupo scolded, silencing Alex, "Yes, execute, The Seven Laws of Magic enforced by the Council and all carry the death penalty if ever broken. It's not exactly like we can take someone who used a curse to kill another in front of a judge; we'd get laughed out of court. So we take them to the Wardens.
"As for what the Laws are, remember these because they affect you as well. Thou shalt not kill by use of magic, Thou shalt not transform others, Thou shalt not invade the mind of another, Thou shalt not enthrall another, Thou shalt not reach beyond the borders of life, Thou shalt not swim against the Currents of Time, Thou shalt not seek beyond the Outer Gates," Lupo rattled off, keeping track on her fingers.
During this litany Alex had his head in his hands mumbling about how, 'God hated him,' and 'the unfairness of it all,' all the while trying not to break down laughing.
"Though basically," Lupo smirked at her disbelieving 'partner', "you can only lose your head if you kill someone with magic."
"I can do magic now," Alex questioned, peeking a tired eye out of his hands, "since when?"
"Explain later," Lupo said with a dismissive flick of her hand, "now as for where we stand with the rest of the powers that reside in Chicago, well it's a toss up. Most places in the world only really have a few powers interested in them. We on the other hand, because of the nexus get just about ever major player.
"The biggest threat are these," Lupo said, pointing to the screen that now had a giant bat-like thing," That is a Red Court Vampire, normally they go around in what they call skin suits so they can look like a normal person. They drink blood and will kill you without hesitation. They have a weakness toward fire so we use Hellfire incendiary rounds to take them out."
"Well of course," Alex chuckled, really this was too much.
Ignoring him Lupo continued to a slide of a man that looked like he had more than just a foot in the grave. "This is a Black Court Vampire," Lupo said, shooting a scolding look over to Alex, "Another fine example of something that wants to kill us. Think Dracula minus a lot of the whole religious aspect. They don't drink blood, they just eat you. They still have the weakness to fire and light but not to the point where they burst into flames if you force them outside. They are dead; they're corpses that have had their soul reattached to the body making them extremely hard to kill. My personal favorite is to use timed Maelstrom explosive rounds, not as flashy as Hellfire's but that look as they realize what's in their body but just before the rounds goes off is priceless."
Noticing her 'partner's' look, Lupo asked, "What?"
"If I didn't know that this was a joke that would've been the most disturbing thing I've ever heard," Alex replied.
With an mischievous grin, Lupo said, "Oh you haven't heard anything yet," sobering, Lupo continued, showing now one of the most beautiful couples Alex had ever seen, "Now for the last group of Vampires, the White Court, while we are technically neutral to them and we both try to avoid each other, there have been some run ins with them over the years. Basically they feed off spiritual energy what they get though enhancing their victim's emotion, lust, fear, pain, what have you. They're faster and stronger then an average person but really much weaker than the other two Vamp types. So they don't really have any big exploitable weaknesses but then again they're pretty susceptible to your standard hollow point.
"Almost done," Lupo said, casting a glance to her disgruntled 'partner', "just one more group to go."
"Finally," Alex mumbled, just wanting this farce to be over.
Pretending that she didn't hear him Lupo advanced to the final slide, only to be greeted with raucous laughter.
"Fairies, I have to be worried about fairies," Alex choked out, as he 'finally got it', glancing occasionally to the screen that now held an image of a pixie, a centaur, a troll, and a few Sidhe Lords and Ladies, "Whoever came up with that slide needs to look into a career as a fairy tale writer, they'd make a killing."
"Will you SHUT. UP," Lupo growled out, "Christ, you'd think you could deal with a little show and tell but that is obviously beyond you."
That shut Alex up, "Look, I get it, I figured it out, I'm the new guy, and this is the SI version of hazing the new guy, I understand. Sorry I took so long to get it, but come on," Alex replied, waving at the screen.
"As I was saying," the still fuming Lupo ground out, "These are Fae, and they reside in a parallel region known as the NeverNever. It is this place where the Magical transit is used. A portal is opened here in this world and it takes you over to the NeverNever, after walking a few miles in on that side a new portal is opened and you would find yourself hundreds of miles away from where you started. Both SI and the Fae try to play nice and avoid each other, while we're nominally allied with the Courts of Summer and Winter, there are many Wild Fae that are not bound to the Courts rules. Fae have a weakness to steal and iron, so any ammo that has a steel round is lethal to Fae.
"Now then, that's all the big fish in our little pond, there are still several other minor groups that we'll get into later. So," Lupo glanced at a smirking Alex, "Any questions?"
"Are you a stripper, because that is the only way this day would get any weirder," Alex tossed back.
Lupo's face went through several expressions, shock, then fury, before settling on a dangerous, evil, little smile. "Ah, you figured me out," she purred, walking over to an out of the way podium at the side of the room, kicking off her shoes as she went.
"Wha…," was the only thing that came to Alex's mind.
"Oh, com'on," Lupo said, placing her odd vest on the podium, "you didn't think that your old division wouldn't feel a little bad for what they did to you?"
"You mean…," Alex tried through his befuddled mind.
"Though the guys in SI said I had to do that presentation," she continued, turning her back to Alex she shucked off her t-shirt but replacing the vest.
Coming to his senses Alex got up and started over to Lupo, "Really this isn't necessary," Alex began
"Oh, but it is," Lupo said seductively, looking over her shoulder. Hooking her fingers in her waist band she knelt down sliding her pants down as she went, her vest hiding all her more private parts.
The small analytical part of Alex's brain wondered about the vest as he was half way to her. The weird back section that swooped so low it covered all her back side, the too small hood that would never fit her.
Then something happened that Alex no longer cared about the vest. One second he was striding toward a kneeling, nearly naked woman and the next he was slammed on his back with a large, furry, growling, thing, pinning him to the ground with his neck in its jaws. Naturally at this point Alex had nearly pissed himself as he closed his eyes and awaited the coming bite, a bite that never happened. As suddenly as it started the pressure disappeared.
Opening his eyes Alex was confronted with a creature that looked roughly like a wolf. Scuttling backward until he ran into the first row of chairs Alex took the 'wolf' in. It was huge, muscular, and tall, it would've come up to Alex's waist, it had black fur and intelligent golden eyes. And it was armored, leather, almost like the body armor used by the K-9 units but with the addition of an attached helmet part. It was very familiar, it was Lupo's vest.
With huge eyes Alex watched the 'wolf' turn and padded over to behind the podium. He watched in awe as the rear legs quickly morphed into something a lot more feminine. Standing up, Lupo, using the podium and her 'vest' to maintain her decency, leaned forward, looking down at a shaking Alex.
"Well Cobs any questions," asked a smirking Lupo.
Alex never remembered how he got up and fled SI that day, he never remembered driving like a mad man to get back home, and he never remembered breaking open his modest liquor cabinet and downing all it's contents. All he remembered was Lupo's laugh chasing him all the way into his drunken slumber.
Now who saw that coming, a werewolf for a partner? If you decoded her name you would've known.
And in case any of you are wondering Lupo uses 'partner' because she considers the assignment of her partner as something of joke.
If you see any glaring mistake let me know.
Important Note: If anyone knows how I can tab on FanFiction I'll give them a bit part in an upcoming chapter if you can tell me how (minor role, i.e. stunned witness, dead body, a small kill off character). Just leave your First name and description.
Next Chapter: Tell Me It Was All A Bad Dream