“Ooo check out the painted lady Penulski just brought in,” one of the detectives crowed over his desk. Killian looked up and almost dropped the file in his hands.

“Whoa there, slim, what’s gotten into you?” Orphile, his partner who just made detective, paused in his mustache grooming.

Killian’s mouth opened, but no sound came out. His eyes fixated onto the woman in handcuffs walking past him, her head held high as if she intended to walk around the precinct in such a manner in the first place.

Her bright, unforgettable violet eyes boredly explored the room. His breath hitched in his throat as her eyes met his; and for a moment he thought a recognition had been shared, but she kept an indifferent face and whisked her glance over the other cops in the room in an equal manner.

“Dude, that’s no whore. That’s the Red Queen herself!” another detective got to his feet. The office erupted in gasps and jeers as Penulski, absorbing himself in their cheers, nudged the woman past the desks and towards the interrogation rooms.

Her red hair in large, semi 1950’s curls bounced with every step she took. Despite the rest of the squad ballyhooing Penulski’s prized catch, all Killian heard was the click of her heels on the cold tiles, approaching him. As she passed his disbelieving, frozen self, their eyes met again, and Killian could swear the straight line of her mouth curved up ever so slightly and one of her purple eyes winked at him.

He spun around and watch her disappear around the corner; and the din of the excited officers returned to his ears. “Hey, mate!” Orphile slapped his arm. “Huh?” Killian returned to the room. “Wassup? You look like you seen a ghost,” Orphile pushed him into a chair.

“That’s the Red Queen?” Killian’s shoulders went slack. “Yea. Top profile case since I joined the higher ups. I can’t believe Penulski got her!” Orphile joined the company of awe-struck detectives. Killian reeled slightly.

That was the Red Queen? Her? The owner of those beautiful violet eyes was the up and coming mafia warlord of the city? The owner of those beautiful violet eyes was the infamous mafia hacker; earning the moniker Red Queen for when she was done with whomever who vexed her, their blood would drip off her like a royal red coat, and her axe was her scepter. The owner of those beautiful eyes, who saw a child in a burning building to safety.

As the other detectives stopped their work to discuss (very excitedly) how Penulski managed to catch her, Killian sprung to his feet and made his was to the interrogation rooms. But as he was just about to bust into the hearing room, another cop stopped him; assigned to aid Penulski.

“Whoa whoa whoa you can’t go in there!” the cop held out a hand to block Killian. “I need to go in there. She resembles a suspect for another case and I need visual confirmation,” Killian explained. It wasn’t a total lie.

As far as the Ardeth Street condo fire went, her being at the scene made her viable for questioning. The cop gave the file in Killian’s hands a quick read-through, and promised him no more than five minutes to study the woman silently through the two-way mirror in the neighbouring room. Five minutes was more than enough for Killian to assure himself a 100% that the woman sitting calmly in that chair across a shouting Penulski was the same girl he encountered on the rooftops a few months ago.

The tilting of her head whenever Penulski shouted a new accusation and the slow batting of her perfectly luscious lashes over her brilliant violet eyes confirmed it. Once or twice her cheekbones would rise ever so slightly as her mouth curved a little into a smirk, perfectly replicating the expression she gave him during their little meeting while an apartment-consuming blaze fired on behind her.

Killian’s head rested on the glass. Never in his life would he even think to correlate the mystery child saviour with the budding notorious axe murderer spreading fear into everyone in Old City. But there they were; those unmistakable, one-of-a-kind pair of eyes right in front of him.

“Unbelievable, right?” a man’s voice sounded next to him. Killian jumped away, not having realised that another detective had joined him in the dark room. “Pardon me,” he blurted, embarrassedly correcting himself. The detective waved him away, and kept his eyes on the commotion in the room next to them. “Hard to believe something as pretty as that killed gangsters the way we found them. Some forensic guys even got sick picking ‘ the pieces up,” the detective crossed his arms in awe.

“ONE MORE THING,” Penulski bellowed. “I don’t believe I caught you so easily. What’s the catch, huh? Any blues you targeting?” he practically pitched himself over the table at her.

“As a matter of fact, there is,” her voice rang out steadily, finally reaching Killian’s ears. She sounded young, a little high-pitched; but there was something else mixed up in her voice. Some kind of masked anger, or contempt. “There’s is someone here right now that has some knowledge of the events surrounding my uncle’s assassination. I would like to ask a few questions,” she leaned back in her chair, smiling a rigid, polite smile.

“Wolfrik Jaxon. Major crime boss in Lower Old until his untimely death, leaving one and only heir Anya Jaxon to go off radar to survive this long. Looks like she’s decided to fight back,” the detective next to Killian murmured. But his voice now had a funny muffle to it, like he was wearing a Darth Vader mask.

Killian turned to see the ‘detective’ wearing a gas mask, brandishing a big Magnum revolver.

“Wha-?” Killian lurched backwards and stumbled onto a desk behind him, feeling terribly dizzy all of a sudden. Penulski, in the other room, slumped forward onto the table.

The ‘detective’ fired three shots at the two-way window, shattering it. Anya Jaxon, the Red Queen, slowly got to her feet as the ‘detective’ flung himself through the window. A gunshot later, her handcuffs were off and they leapt into the room Killian was struggling to keep awake in.

“Killian, was it? Try to stay alive now. Someone needs to clean up the mess,” Anya bent down and pinched his jaw, forcing him to look up at her. Captivated by those violet eyes, Killian’s eyebrows raised in surprise. He tried to reach out and grab her wrist, but she dropped him and sauntered out of the door, with the phony detective in tow. The last he heard was a few gunshots and screams before everything went black.

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