Dresden Files: Philadelphia

Chapter 3: A Glimpse of the Depths

And it's staring back....

  Having overslept, Valentin wakes up at 7:30 to Victoria Lorraine knocking on his apartment door.  Victoria presses Valentin for information on the location of the book, and though he tries to resist, she seduces him and Valentin lets it slip that Jean Fazel is in possession of the book.  Valentin succeeds in getting Victoria to leave his apartment after that, but not before she gets him to promise to go to a fundraiser with her later on that night.  Rattled by his encounter with the lust vampire, Valentin is distracted and “Sexually Frustrated” for the rest of the day.   Valentin finishes preparing for the day, and goes to meet Jean Fazel at High Steaks as planned.

  Jean Fazel wakes up with his wife Felicienne at the mosque.  He talks with the Imam, and decides to take the book and hide it in another location.  Upon leaving the mosque, Jean Fazel receives a magical message from Ian Pendergast, warning him of the danger of the book and begging him not to let it fall into fairy hands.  Moved by Ian’s plea, Jean Fazel resolves to keep the book away from the fae.  After dropping his wife off at their apartment, Jean Fazel continues on to the University, where he tells his TAs that he’ll be out for the day, and proceeds to hide the book in the University Library, counting on obscurity to keep it safe.  He then walks over 15 minutes early to High Steaks, to find Valentin already waiting for him.  Jean Fazel then calls upon Lysander to make a deal, only to find Lysander already sitting behind him at a different table.  Lysander proposes that should Jean Fazel be able to neutralize enough Winter Fae to be able to equalize power between summer and winter before his child is born, the debt could be erased.  Jean Fazel agrees, with the caveat that the deal holds even if summer exceeds Winter in power.  He then makes a deal with Valentin, agreeing to trade Lysander’s boon for Valentin’s assistance in killing the Winter Fae.  They then leave to make the necessary preparations before heading over to Fairmount Park.

  Ian wakes up in the morning with his arm throbbing, and after getting his bearings, sets up a simple ritual to send Jean Fazel a magical message in the form of a bird composed of wind and ice.  Anastasia finds Ian and relates a nightmare she had of a gladiator being consumed by a great darkness.  After waiting two hours for James to show, Ian finally heads over to James apartment and finds him in a drugged stupor after shooting up on heroin the night before.  Ian throws James in the shower and picks out clean clothes for him, with a promise to talk about his drug habits later.  They head over to the Sheriff’s office, where they find that the gunman that was being held there has just committed suicide after a visit from his “lawyer”.  Ian and James run out of the building to see a black Mercedes Benz pealing out.  They give pursuit in Ian’s father’s Rolls-Royce Phantom, and eventually run the other car off the road.  A tense standoff with Calvin Tryst follows, and Calvin Tryst lets slide that the Tryst family is working with the Black Court Vampires in an attempt to overthrow the Lorraines.  Calvin also references a Black Court vampire even more powerful than Rayleigh that is in charge of the Black Court.  With Calvin’s car hexed and out of commission, James and Ian head off to Roy’s apartment to get some clues to the location of Mikhail Vostrovsky.  Though Roy’s apartment is burned out, the basement is mostly intact and Ian and James notice signs of a struggle.  Using his enchanted glasses, Ian sees Roy being captured by a powerful dark figure.  Ian picks up the bag of supplies Roy dropped and uses the dog tags he finds to track Roy to the Laurel Hill Cemetery.  There he finds the grave of a “Jack Moore”, and follows his tracking spell to a mausoleum.  Sensing a powerful force inside, Ian is forced to find a pay phone and call Yardly for back up.  Yardly warns him not to go after Roy, telling him to wait for whatever forces Yardly can muster.  Ian then drops James off at his house so James can retrieve Mikhail’s hair from evidence, and continues on back up to his house.

 

  After obtaining steel jacketed rounds, Valentin and Jean Fazel head off to Fairmount Park.  Valentin takes cover in the trees and watches while Jean Fazel sits down on bench on a stone bridge.  A large black man approaches Jean Fazel and inquires as to whether or not he knows him.  A cat jumps up onto the bridge and exclaims “You idiot, that’s the Summer Lion!” revealing his identity as Rimepaw.  The large man then lets out a roar and then drops his glamour revealing himself as Czernosh the troll.  Taken aback by his sudden change, Valentin only manages to shot off Czernosh’s nose.  As Jean Fazel transforms Mokosh unveils herself and lands a glancing blow on Jean Fazel, leaving him with a “Gashed Leg”.  More of the Strays arrive, and Valentin finds himself occupied fending off the malks.  As Jean Fazel faces down the two trolls and Rimepaw, Ian fortuitously arrives and throws a lightning bolt as Rimepaw injuring his leg.  As Valentin kills the last of the strays, Czernosh throws a bench at Jean Fazel, who dodges out of the way.  Meanwhile, Mokosh turns herself invisible and attempts to sneak up upon Ian.  Feigning ignorance, Ian let’s her sneak up upon him before turning and running her through on his warden sword.  Mokosh is then shot through the head by Valentin, killing her and saving Ian from imminent retribution.  Rimepaw then goes after Valentine, and Jean Fazel in lion form pursues.  Ian, counting on the support of the mystery sniper, taunts Czernosh into attacking him.  The troll then throws another bench at Ian.  Ian raises his shield and manages to block the bench, only to see the troll charging him.  Rimepaw corners Valentin, but is stopped when Jean Fazel pounces and pins the malk leader down before breaking its neck.  Face to face with the angry troll, Ian desperately attempts the “What’s that behind you?” ploy.  Czernosh turns to look behind him, and Valentin puts a bullet through his eye.  Ian, Jean Fazel, and Valentin barely have a second to breathe before the temperature begins to drop drastically and The Fair Lady and The Lictors can be seen off in the distance.  As the Lictors begin to gain on them, an amused Lysander appears beside Jean Fazel and throws lightning bolts at the Lictors slowing them down.  He laughs and congratulates Jean Fazel on his progress before disappearing.  Making it to Ian’s father’s car, they take off towards the university.

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