Things start happening, but only lead to dead ends.
Disclaimer: I do not own Class of the Titans. I also do not own Dungeons and Dragons, though I do have a copy of the monster manual (I and II).
That Hero Business
Chapter 3 - A Curious Murder
It wasn't long before Hera emerged, looking annoyed, and sighed at the bewildered look on her hero's faces.
"I will call a council of Gods, perhaps someone will understand what has happened." She closed her eyes in thought, "the world has changed, it seems, or something in it." She shook her head and turned from them, wandering away in her own thoughts.
"Um, Miss Hera..." Jay took a few steps after her, but she was gone.
"Cryptic..." Neil's familiar, whining tone cut through the silence.
"Yeah," Herry agreed, the shocked look still on his face. Odie had already pulled out his laptop and was typing away at something. The activity seemed to calm him, although it grated slightly on the nerves of everyone else. Jay turned to Theresa,
"Where was Miss Persephone, do you know?"
"She went to see Hades in the underworld, she said she'd be back in a few days." Theresa replied, wondering about the changes her mentor had undergone.
"What's up with Ares?" Atlanta asked Archie, who had been leaning on a pillar, attention away from everyone else. He looked at her and shrugged in answer, seeming preoccupied.
"In the meantime," Jay gathered his thoughts, "we should keep an eye out for Cronus."
"Way ahead of you Jay." Odie turned his computer towards them, a news update playing on the screen.
"The victim was found this morning, covered in deep gashes witnesses say are claw marks." The matter - of - fact voice of the reporter documented the images of a body bag being loaded into an ambulance. The camera switched to a cop on scene,
"This couldn't have been done by a human being, but I assure the people that animal control is already tracking the creature."
"Police suspect a cougar or a stray dog. We will have more information later tonight." The reporter finished the report, and Odie's window closed.
"A cougar in a back alley? Sounds a bit unlikely." Atlanta commented.
"Especially downtown," Odie replied, already getting the address in preparation for Jay's question.
"That sounds like a good place to start, Odie, can you get us an address..." Jay paused as Odie handed him a piece of paper.
"Yes Jay, you're that predictable." Theresa patted him on the shoulder as the seven teenagers made their way to Herry's truck.
"I'll take that, Jay," Herry snatched the address from Jay's hand, "rough part of town," he continued after reading it.
"Yeah," Jay replied, following his team out the door.
They piled out of the truck in front of the crime scene, yellow tape fluttering in the slight breeze.
"They've already cleared away all the evidence." Atlanta declared after a peek into the alley.
"See if you can find anything they missed." Jay replied to the tracker of the team. She nodded and ducked under the tape, Archie close on her heels with a flashlight. The remaining five waited quietly, each trying to occupy themselves with their own thoughts, but kept getting distracted of light off Neil's mirror as he checked his teeth.
"Hey Archie, shine that over here." Atlanta's voice broke the silence. Five suspicious teenagers listened to some indiscernible words and some scuffling sounds before Atlanta spoke up,
"No way is that possible..."
"Ow! Atlanta, that was my head!" Archie's annoyed yell broke the suspense and the waiting five moved consecutively into the alley. The flashlight cast strange shadows from its position on the ground. Atlanta stood on Archie's shoulders, she had been looking at the wall, but was now swaying dangerously as Archie rubbed the spot she had dropped the flashlight on.
"Archie, quit moving, whoa!" she tumbled of backwards, Herry catching her effortlessly.
"Thanks," she smiled at him, missing the completely panicked look on Archie's face when she fell.
"No problem," Herry replied, setting her down gently.
"So what's the verdict?" Theresa asked. Atlanta frowned,
"Well, it's defiantly not a cougar, unless you guys have ever seen one climb a brick wall." She indicated the back wall of the dead end, "there's claw marks up the wall, as if someone, or something, was climbing it."
A humanoid figure listened to their conversation as it sat perched in the shadows. It didn't make a sound as it lifted a hand to look at metal-clad fingers curiously.
"It's probably long gone by now." Odie spoke up, noticing Jay looking at the rooftops. He nodded,
"And we're losing light fast. We'll have to pick up the trail later." His teammates nodded agreement. They had homework still to do, after all.
The shadowy figure tapped its metal claws against the brick as they drove away. It glanced up at the night's source of pale illumination, just beginning to wane after last night's full moon.
I would just like to make it clear that the gnomes in Dungeons and Dragons are nothing like the creepy garden gnomes people are accustomed to. D'n'D gnomes are inventors and arcanists, they're actually pretty cool. Just making sure no-one gets confused.
This will probably be my last update for a long, long time. I'm going away to camp for seven weeks, and even if I have access to a computer, I doubt I'll have time to write. Terribly sorry, but you will have to wait for answers. Well, you'd have to wait anyways, it does take our young heroes awhile to figure out what is happening. Meanwhile, look forward to Archie and Atlanta moments! Ah yes, outwardly, I just like watching things explode, but I do have my inner romantic. I guess I probably shouldn't tease anymore, and I hope you enjoyed this one. Maybe I'll be able to get a short chappie in before I leave. Unlikely, but possible.