Rachel was reading a book 'Active Ingredients in the Herbalogy of the Tropics', relaxing in the sofa. She still couldn't believe that Ivy had truly gone. Give her a day or two and she will come back. It wasn't like her to leave this way but Rachel was sure it wouldn't last.
Oh! Grangola plant had really interesting properties, if mixed with Blue Juniper it would form a salve that when applied could dramatically increase blood flow under the skin. Maybe not so useful but... interesting.
Closing the book, Rachel sighed. She already missed Ivy and it had only been a couple of days. She didn't really mean it now, did she? Taking a sip of her ice-cold ice tea she took the remote to turn on the TV.
Somebody knocked on the front door, the sound echoing in the empty church.
Opening the front door a familiar figure stood outside. Rynn, the master of the city. Vamp, extraordinaire, like some crazy twisted action hero from the fifties. Rachel hadn't still decided whether Rynn was a great evil to be thwarted or a good guy who was just a bit misunderstood. He had made Ivy smile. A Good Guy. But there were also the shady dealing and bodies popping up around the city, threads of evidence pointing to Rynn's way. It was complicated—what isn't.
"Greetings, Ms. Morgan, may I come in? Is Ivy here?" Rynn's voice sounding more respectful than normal.
After a moment of gathering her thoughts Rachel found the ability to speak.
"No, she left." Waving her arms around randomly, not really knowing what she was trying to express by it and feeling a bit silly, folding her arms against her chest, now getting angry because of her uncertainty.
"Can you tell me when she will be back?" Rynn seems to be in a hurry, fidgeting and changing his position constantly. Normally Rynn was very flirty and responsive to people's body language but not now, something really had him on the edge.
Now that is a good question. When will she be back. She could be gone forever but Rachel wouldn't believe that.
"I don't truly know. She just packed her bags and drove out." Ivy had bought Kisten's old motorcycle. It was a way to remember him. She had also taken Rachel for a ride around the block with it a couple of times. Couple of really nice and fun times. Hugging Ivy and feeling the wind rush through her hair... oh, now where was I? Rynn. Right.
"There's something I need to tell her. It's urgent." Rynn spoke with a serious voice just oozing of seriousness.
"You can tell me. I can then tell her, provided that I find her, and of course provided that it's so important that I have to find her. When she wants to lose herself, she usually does a pretty good job at it."
Rynn seemed to consider this for a while.
"All right Ms. Morgan. What I'm about to tell you wouldn't normally leave my lips and taking you into this kind of confidence is unheard of in the vampire society... But Ivy is in danger and the situation is forcing my hand."
Rynn was looking away. Thoughts were clearly crossing his mind. He was really at the edge, this wasn't the Rynn Rachel knew. He never ever, never ever never showed his true feelings, or even when he had a thought or when he was idle. Or was Rachel just this bad at reading people not knowing if Rynn was just manipulating her?
"Were in war, Ms. Morgan."
Ok... Rachel thought. This was clearly something unexpected.
"Actually we've been in war for a while now. I know nobody has told you. Don't blame Ivy, she was ordered to stay silent. Even though she tore one conference room apart because of it. The girl has a temper."
Rynn returned from where-ever he had went before and looked Rachel into the eye.
"The situation in Cincinnati is not so stable as most believe. This is a secret that only the most trusted in our camarilla are aware of. And you. I really hope you can stay silent about this. I'm sure you don't need me to say what action I must take if you won't."
"Go on..." Rachel motioned.
"One of our greatest supporters is the Tamwood family line. Being so close with Piscary for so long bound the transfer of power. No vampire could contest it... openly that is. Behind closed curtains the plans were already being made. We have one fatal weakness in our balance of power. Everything rests on the fact that Ivy was Piscary's scion. Don't ask me to tell all the details of vampire politics, just trust me on this. If Ivy was to say... disappear from the face of the earth, things would turn around and every camarilla could openly contest our claim on Cincinnati. I've known this for a long time now and have been actively working against those houses. We still don't exactly know which camarilla it is but this much I know..."
Rachel was holding her breath.
"...somebody has hired a hit on Ivy, and she doesn't yet know it."
Rynn was faster than Rachel's reactions.
"Stop. I need you to listen to me, and listen well." Rynn pressed his both hands on Rachel's shoulders. For some strange reason it soothed her and made her for a second forget something, something very important.
"Of course, I need you to find her. That's a given. But when you do reach her, you absolutely can not tell her about our conversation. She must not be made aware of the situation at hand."
"Why...?" Rachel wondered out loud.
"You know Ivy, right?" Rynn laughed. "Of course you do. She's stubborn as a mule and kicks even harder." Rynn seemed to unconsciously rub the left side of his back like it ached.
"The thing is, camarillas don't just hire hits on persons, they hire hits on whole families."
"Ah..." It made sense now.
"If Ivy knew that anyone was threatening her little sister... well, it wouldn't be very pretty to say the least."
Rynn took in Rachel's worried expression.
"But keep no mind of it, we have the situation under control and can very well protect the Tamwoods. Our only immediate concern is to find Ivy and protect her without her knowing why it's being done."
Looking like a father who was saying goodbye to her daughter leaving home for the first time to go out to the cold, cruel world, Rynn could fool people really good with his act. Sometimes Rachel wondered...
"Ms. Morgan, if Ivy found out about the threat against her family, it would spoil our plans. It would alert the enemy that we know what they are doing and would make them impossible to catch. Next time we would perhaps not be so lucky and they would be more careful in their machinations. You understand? Yes?"
Rynn gazed around, looking into the distance. "She is like a daughter to me truly. I know what Piscary saw in her. But it's so much more. So much more."
"You are really lucky... Rachel, I hope you know that." That comment seemed so out of place that Rachel took a step back.
"But no matter. It's time for me to say goodbye and wish the best of luck to your search, Ms. Morgan. If you need anything, you know my number. Don't hesitate to call."
With that last sentence, Rynn turned and walked away, his fancy shoes tapping on the cobblestone pathway.
As the limo drove away around the curve in the road, Rachel still stood there, thinking.
Well, there was that one note in the notebook, the one that she had with her supreme detective skills discovered. When Ivy was in an emotional place, she pressed her pen very hard and it leaved almost visible trace. Softly shading the underlying paper with a pencil made those traces visible. Rachel knew where she had probably gone.
Why hadn't she told Rynn? It was a private matter between her and Ivy.