Brooke Thompson stumbled out of the hospital trying not to draw attention to herself. She had so far been lucky and no one had asked too many questions. They were more concerned with the knife wound in her belly then her name and address but it was only a matter of time.
Brooke knew she needed to find a place to lay low for awhile. One of the TVs in the hall she had passed had the news on and one of the newscasters had talked about "Brooke Thompson" sightings at the suddenly cancelled music event thrown by Margaret Booth but the same newscaster was laughing it off as ghost stories. She was just shy of out earshot when she heard the newscaster mention that Margaret Booth and her husband had disappeared.
Brooke got a few blocks away from the hospital when she realized she had no money or real plan. When she had been traveling with Donna they had always planned on picking up fake ids from one of Donna's people and then just disappearing to the edge of the world. Now however Brooke was on her own. She knew she could search out Donna who she was pretty sure was still alive but something stopped her.
Brooke was about ready to pass out again when she saw an old decrepit hotel in the distance. It was one of the hotels she would have never stopped in before. Before the nightmare her life had become. Now however she didn't think twice. Or maybe a third time.
Brooke passed through the door and into the larger then she expected hallway...
"Can I help..."
Brooke looked over at a bald man in what appeared to be a dress and turned to him and stumbled but was caught by a woman who she hadn't seen before, "Magnificent." Brooke looked into her eyes and saw something she hadn't seen since Montana had looked at her. It was both a hunger and something else that really worried her. "You are beautiful. Why do you hide your darkness?" Brooke tried to look away from the woman but she was both holding her up and staring straight into her eyes. "You're darkness is right there simmering below the surface but you deny it."
"I'm not..." Brooke tried to speak but she was so tired.
"The poor woman is about to pass out." Brooke saw the man in a dress rush over to her and carefully take her out of the woman's dark embrace, "Why don't I have her rest in one of the empty rooms?"
"Of course" The woman nodded and walked away like she was already bored. "Liz, you make sure to let me know when she is better."
"Of course countess."
Brooke tried to keep track of the conversation. She knew something important was going on. Years spent in prison cells had honed her sense of danger and something about this hotel was setting off all her warning bells but before she could say or do anything her legs gave out from under her.
Hazel Evers hummed a happy tune as she washed the clothes that had carefully been removed from the new girl. The girl had passed out cold soon after and hadn't woken up since. The blood had begun to seep through her bandages. The Laundress was pretty sure the poor girl would have passed out dead if she had ended up anywhere other then the Cortez.
The hotel was abuzz with the girl. Ghosts and vampires alike where curious who she was. Mr. March was even waiting for her to wake up sensing a darkness inside of her himself. Someone who could complete his masterpiece.
"An innocent face that hides bubbling anger and darkness. Like a tea kettle boiling water."
"She is mine James." The Countess said as they watched the girl sleep. "I saw her first."
"To do what with? Turn her into one of your tainted lovers?" March smiled at his wife, "I haven't seen Ramona around, have you gotten bored of her already?" March smiled again, "You will waste her gifts my love."
"And if I let you have her?"
"We can forget our next dinner appointment."
"Our next two."
"She means that much to you?" The Countess looked at her husband for a second, "Why?"
"Because her darkness is just below the surface. Even with the murders she has already committed she has only tasted what she can become. She is all anger and remorse. If I remove the remorse she could be a work of art."
"You are assuming she agrees."
"I can be very persuasive as you well know." March turned to Hazel Evers like he just noticed she was in the room, "Make sure she has everything she needs. When she is ready bring her to me."
"Of course sir."
With that Hazel Evers went back to her work cleaning the blood out of the young girls cloths. And hummed to herself as she thought about cleaning the blood certainly on the sheets.