AN: Still no name for the predator...pouting...give me a name ppl! Please?

Rating: T for a little bit of Blood



Jeremy awoke to the sound of someone's fist pounding on his front door. For a single moment, he considered going right back to sleep and forgetting the noise but the pain in his body was slowly coming back and sleep slipped away entirely as a fresh bout of knocking came from downstairs. He sighed and got up, wincing as the stitches in his chest stretched and burned. Remy's left eye had swollen shut and his cheek felt puffy to the touch, although he couldn't feel any pain. He couldn't even remember how he had even gotten home yesterday in this shape yesterday.

He took the stairs down slowly, trying in vain to reopen his swollen eye but all he could see was a small sliver of light and he gave up. The person at the door knocked again, this time managing to sound even more impatient.

"I'm coming, I'm coming. No need to shit your pants." he rasped, hands going to his throat. Even talking pained him.

He opened the door and stared. Two cops stared back, hands on hips and wearing identical expressions of 'son, you're in a heap of trouble alright'. He opened his mouth to ask but the blond cop beat him to it.

"Mr. Brooks, I suppose. Looks like you had a fun evening, we have a couple of questions to ask you about what happened last night and we'd like you to follow us to the station."

Remy squinted down at him, the man stiffening and widening his stance under his scrutiny. He finally opened his mouth. "Umm, why?"

"You know what you did." the more handsome black-haired one said in a cold voice. Remy wanted to roll his eyes, what was this, a fucking rerun of robo-cop? He gave up when the men continued to stare blandly at him, their car lights flaring in the background. He was suddenly oddly grateful for living so far into the woods. At least the neighbours wouldn't have any embarrassing gossip to talk about at dinnertime.

"Yeah man, just let me put something on." Remy sighed and wandered back inside, not bothering to close the door in their faces. Great, he was the one that got beaten up and now the cops were here to arrest him? Where was the justice in that?

He walked upstairs, washed his face and brushed his teeth. There was a prominent shadow of stubble coming along but Remy just didn't feel like shaving it off his face. Maybe when it grew longer, he could pass time by braiding it in prison or some shit. He limped into his bedroom and sniffed at an old t-shirt lying crumpled on the ground. It smelled strongly of blood and dirt, and it occurred to him that it was probably not going to sit well with the cop if he wore that particular shirt. Remy was in the process of pulling his own faded shirt off his body when someone came in. The black-haired one blinked at him and he blinked back.

"You look like shit." the young man said promptly. Remy smiled humourlessly. It was true. Black and purple bruises had surfaced during the sleepy hours of last night and the thick stitched wound on his chest had crusted over with a nasty-colored film again, as Remy hadn't the energy left to properly bandage the thing last night.

"Hand me the roll of gauze over there." Remy called behind him. The cop did so with surprising willingness and even gave him a hand in wrapping the thing around his chest. By the time Remy was dressed and ready, the other cop had wandered in, eyes flickering between the two of them standing together.

"Don't get too chummy with the suspect, Williams."

The brunet cop stepped away hurriedly and moved toward the door. Remy followed at a more sedate pace, his body starting to ache even more now.

He'd been sitting in an interrogation room for approximately eighty three seconds when a fat man with a head like a boiled egg burst in. The light reflecting from the man's shining forehead was enough to temporarily blind him. The man slammed a manila folder onto the metal table before Remy and folded his arms.

"So, Mr. Brooks, where were you last night?"

And that was the first question in a series of questions. Remy explained that he still did not know what was going on and refused to speak until his lawyer came, omitting the fact that he didn't have one. He called Victoria instead.

"Mr. Brooks, last night five men were brutally slaughtered in an alley outside of town. Now, you may be wondering how any of this has anything to do with you, but we found traces of your blood in the dirt and also your name was on a list found in the side pocket of one of the victims." he held up a hand when Remy opened his mouth to object. "Not to mention that you happen to work in the bar not twenty steps from that alley, and you look like shit today."

Remy shut his mouth. The man stared seriously at him. His head was spinning with the assload of information the man had just unleashed on him. Darry and his stupid friends were dead? How was that possible? He had just seen them only hours ago. And if they were dead, he certainly wasn't to blame.

The man took his silence as a sign to continue. "We did a little background check on you this morning and guess what came up?"

Remy kept his mouth shut. The fat man continued with a sarcastic grin.

"Ex-navy dropout, hired gun, a long history of bar fights and violence came up, that's what."

Remy could keep silent no longer.

"I was discharged due to injury in the field; I was fucking paralyzed when they shipped me back. I took those jobs because my daughter needed money for her treatments, as for the fighting, that's all in the past now."

The man snorted dismissively and was about to start again when the door opened and the brunet cop who had escorted him there came in, another goddamn folder in his hand.

"Sir, the coroner's report came out." he handed the folder over and Fatty gave a stiff nod and thanked him. Williams went over to a corner and stood there, not bothering to hide his curiosity.

Remy craned his neck to look at the photos when Fatty slapped the folder down on the table. His eyes widened at the gruesome sight of a skinless skull staring with unseeing eyes and refused to look at any more. Fatty sighed distractedly, one hand going to his balding head and scratching at the few tuffs of hair still there.

"Sir, the coroner says one man couldn't have possibly done the job by himself." Williams suddenly interjected from his corner. "The force of cutting a man's head clean off in one stroke is beyond a normal human's strength, not to mention one that was recently discharged from the hospital."

"So you think he's innocent, do you?" Fatty looked like he was going to have an aneurysm. Williams shrugged and didn't say anything else.

"Nevertheless, he does hold pieces of the puzzle and I will keep him here under observation until further notice." Fatty glared down at Remy and Remy glared back.

"Sir," another cop burst in, looking mildly panicked, "civilian reports another murder up in XXX."

Fatty cursed and turned toward the door. "Williams, stay and watch over him. He's not going anywhere anytime soon."

Remy dropped his head onto the cold surface and groaned as Williams walked over and pulled a chair up to sit across from him.

Fifteen minutes later, Victoria swept through the doors of the police station and twenty minutes later, Remy was bundled up in the passenger seat of her car, feeling increasingly confused.

"How?" he began and she slapped his cheek lightly, eyes serious.

"Lloyd owes a favour and I can't let you be tortured to death in there." she said and Remy realized Lloyd was the brunet cop.

"He seems to like you." Remy remarked.

"Yes well, he's been crushing on me since kindergarten. It's a small town." she said lightly, but he heard a smile in her voice.

"What will happen if Fatty returns to find me gone?" he asked.

"Fatty? Oh, that's Lloyd's uncle, Bruce. Don't worry, they've already crossed you off the list of suspects." she laughed and he closed his eyes, letting the sound of crunching gravel and snow lull him to sleep. Gods, he loved her.

Remy woke from a nightmare, legs tangled within the sheets and skin clammy with sweat. The wound on his chest was throbbing in tune with his heart and the ghostly flashes of bright fluorescent lights overhead still seared his retinas. He'd been lying on a surgery table with his chest cut open, hands and legs bound with leather straps, a hideous tiny pale milky thing that looked like a snake poked out from the gaping wound. It opened its mouth and he screamed.

Remy struggled out of bed, eyes watering from pain and stumbled over to his bathroom and threw up in the sink. He grimaced in disgust at the chunks of undigested food and washed them down the drain. His stomach churned and Remy gulped in a mouthful of water to rid himself of the taste. He sat on the toilet for a couple of minutes, getting his strength back and going over the events that had happened to him over the last few days. His life was so fucked up. He was one walking bruise.

Remy swallowed a handful of painkillers, not bothering to stay within the prescription amount, and gulped down an iced beer. His stomach felt like lead now and Remy went into the living room, pulled down the curtains and flicked on the lamp. It was dark outside and snow fell silently against the window. He opened the TV and stared at the screen blankly. Victoria had bandaged his chest again before leaving him to sleep the day off and it was half past seven when he regained consciousness.

Twilight was on and Remy changed the channel with a snort of amusement. He settled on a rerun of a Rockets game and sat there, not really looking at the screen. The painkillers had kicked in and his head felt strangely like it was floating in the clouds and he had a vague notion that he probably shouldn't have swallowed his meds with cold beer.

He'd almost drifted off again when he heard something, a strange thud that seemed to shake the couch he had been sitting on. Remy blinked owlishly and stood up, mind still fluttering in a drug-induced haze. He stumbled toward the sound and found himself standing in the kitchen. Remy blinked at the sight of a huge ugly crack that had appeared out of nowhere on his kitchen wall. Plaster still dribbled out of the ugly crack like blood, leaving a small pile on the ground. He stared stupidly for a few seconds, mind repeating a loop over and over in his head between 'that's gonna take a lot of green slips to fix' and 'shit'.

Then the floor to ceiling window next to the wall shattered with a huge boom and a figure catapulted into his kitchen, landing on the wooden table in the middle and cracking the legs like crazy straws under the weight. Remy's military training kicked in almost immediately, adrenaline flooding his veins and sore body protesting as he threw himself sideways to avoid the lashing tail that had followed the thing that came in through the window. His ribs felt ticklish and Remy cursed himself for taking the drugs beforehand. Pain was good in such a situation and would keep his head clear and his body quick, but his feet felt leaden and his head was well, still pretty messed up.

Remy peered down through the layer of dust and wood splinter that had been thrown into the air after the crazy entry. the creature was twisting in the debris and making this weird shrill whine and Remy had to slap himself in the face when he caught sight of the thing with its huge elongated head and seemingly mech-like black body. He half wished it was merely an illusion from the drug and beer combo but the sharp tang of blood that had floated along the breeze through the broken window was unmistakable. The thing smelled like a portable slaughter house.

He ran back into the living room, groping for something to use as a weapon and grabbed a fire tong without thinking. Gripping it in his hands and ignoring the funny ticklish feeling in his chest, he advanced back toward the kitchen. Remy peered in and barely managed to draw his head back as the tail broke the plaster inches from his right eye. Remy ducked and swung the fire poker. It met flesh with a jarring crunch and his arms felt tingly from the force. There was a high-pitched inhuman sound and the fire poker came back half-melted, the tip still sizzling with a strange dark green liquid hissing steam into the air. Remy threw the thing away and made for the stairs. There was a shot gun in an upstairs closet and he had to get to it before the thing came to its senses and severed his head. He had a sure feeling in his gut that the creature was the thing that had killed the five men in the alley.

Fear for his life made the pains disappear and blood pounded in his ears as Remy climbed the dozen or so stairs up to the second floor. It never felt so far away. He ran toward the closet and slammed the door shut, not before seeing a huge black shape thrashing its way up the stairs, shattering the pictures on the wall along the way. Remy locked the door and rushed over to the top shelf and groped wildly for the gun and bullets. He forced his hands to be steady as he put the rounds in, grounding his teeth against the urge to scream as the door splintered. He emptied five rounds into the door as the black head came into view behind the missing splinters of the closet door. The thing screamed its inhuman cry and head butted the door again, managing to get its head inside. Remy stared at the slobbering thing as it dribbled saliva onto his cream carpet. A smaller mouth shot out between it's teeth and Remy turned his head barely in time as it punctured the shelf behind him. He saw a letter opener and before the smaller set of teeth could retract, he grabbed the thing and sliced down with all his might. There was a horrid cry and the thing drew back sharply, leaving only the small set of teeth wiggling on the ground and Remy stabbed it until it stopped. He grimaced and grabbed a handful of rounds and slotted them into the gun. Five more shots and he heard a loud thud outside the door.

All was silent and Remy felt the energy seep out of his body like blood from an open wound. He threw the gun away and peered past the broken door. The sight made fear rush right back. The thing was gone. He froze for a second, trying to decide whether to stay in the closet or go out. There was only a letter opener in here and if the bullets ran out, he would be at its tender mercy.

Remy grabbed the gun again and pulled himself painfully to his feet and quietly stepped out of the closet. The instant he stepped out, he knew he had made a mistake. There was a flash of black as the tail lashed out and the gun went flying, his body flying in the opposite direction. Remy vaulted over the banisters and fell to the first floor with a muffled thud, his head connecting with the carpeted ground hard enough to bring black spots into his vision but not enough to crack his skull. Remy felt blood splash onto his tongue as his teeth closed over the flesh of his inner cheek and bit down.

The creature hissed at him triumphantly from the second floor and jumped down gracefully. Remy grit his teeth and spat out a mouthful of blood and using all fours to reach the living room, he began to crawl. The creature hissed as it advanced, its mutilated mouth projecting flecks of dark green spittle.

Remy reached the fireplace the same time the creature decided to pounce, its weight landing directly on his wounded chest. Remy screamed at the feeling of ribs creaking in protest and felt warm wetness spread from the stitches in his chest. He'd probably gotten is stitches ripped clean open from the pressure.

His hand groped blankly and closed over the other fire poker and with a burst of dying strength brought it up in an arc. The pointed tip sunk into the side of its skull and came through the other side. Remy rolled out from underneath the thing which had collapsed onto the ground, twitching erratically.

The tattered black shirt over his chest was moist with blood and Remy fought the urge to cough, knowing that if he did, more blood would come up than air. Black dots danced in his vision and Remy closed his eyes, wishing that he could have at least seen his daughter one last time before dying. With that last thought firmly planted, he blacked out.

He had been following his apprentice for two hours straight. The cold weather was starting to agitate him, making the camouflage malfunction at odd intervals. The young blood was not doing any better, managing to slip off the branch of a tree while in pursuit. He snorted and quickened his pace, making sure his apprentice was in his view. The hard meat had wandered further up ahead, and impatience was gradually taking over.

The younger yautja jumped down and landed in the snow, spear flashing as it charged at the xenomorph. During his short contemplation, much had occurred and he watched silently from the trees. He would not lend a helping hand, for it would be considered dishonourable to disturb a hunter during their hunt and besides, it was the new blood's first trial.

If he could kill the alien, then he would be welcomed into the clan as a blooded warrior, if not, he would bring eternal shame upon himself and commit an honourable suicide.

He blinked and realized that his mind had wandered again, the cold seemingly the main cause. His apprentice was running toward the fallen xenomorph, triumph already at hand when two more xenomorphs came out of the tree on both sides. It was an ambush; they had been lead there on purpose. He drew his spear and dropped down from the tree in a shower of snow. He went without camouflage as the snow would reveal his position anyway. He really hated cold weather.

The battle ended quickly, he was a seasoned warrior after all and he slayed the two xenomorphs quickly. As their blood hissed quietly in the glistening snow, he looked up. There was movement and without a word to his newly blooded apprentice, he turned to pursue the shadow.

The third xenomorph had crashed through an occupied human residence and he watched the entire battle from just outside the broken window. It ended with the human male lying in what he knew was their recreation room, blood blossoming on its chest. He had been impressed and interested by the event. Never had he witnessed a human take down an adult xenomorph while wounded so. The human twitched feebly and went still. It was a pity that it had died; he could have given the human their mark of honour for killing the alien.

He stepped past the shards of glass and into the room with the dead xenomorph and scanned the human's body for wounds. The huge gaping wound on its chest caught his attention and he bent down, using the tip of his spear to rip away the wet material on its chest. It moved feebly and let out a groan. He reared back in surprise. He had thought the thing dead. He scanned the humanoid carefully again and felt more respect for the thing. It had been wounded and drugged out of its little mind. He trilled curiously, cocking his head and searching his memory.

The wound looked familiar and he realized that it must have been a host to the xenomorphs because he had seen the lab in the mountains before and had witnessed the experiments there. The lab just happened to be close to the human residence. Now completely captured by curiosity, he leaned forward again. The human would live, he decided as he found his medicine kit.

He withdrew a tube of bright blue liquid and spread the contents onto the human's chest, over the wound. Its skin hissed as the liquid came into contact and the human convulsed, dark red liquid streaming down its chin. Dazed eyes fluttered open warily and before it could catch sight of him, he knocked the human out again with one large fist. The thing would not set eyes upon him just yet, he decided, there would be time for further introduction.

After bandaging the wound, he cut off a piece of its prey and branded the human with the mark. Satisfied, he stood and walked over to the fallen alien and was in the middle of dragging it away when he noticed the human had started to shiver. Cold wind blew in from the open window, bringing flecks of snow. He dropped the thing and walked back a few steps, purring thoughtfully. A few minutes later, he departed, leaving behind a mutilated sofa and the stuffing and seat covers bundled around the human like a cocoon. That way it wouldn't freeze to death, he thought with a satisfied trill.