Tela quickly rifled through the corpses of the Twilight Hammer that she'd just killed. Several scraps of rune-cloth, a fair amount of gold, and a couple of items. Not a bad haul all up. Doing a service for life on Azeroth by removing psychotic bandits and being well paid for it. Still, boring, hot, thirsty work in the blistering desert. She grabbed a flask of water out of her pack and took a long drink, her eyes drawn to the sight of Argus sitting just above the horizon. She should have been there today to help with the campaign against the Legion but she had needed a break from killing demons and so she was here gathering supplies and ridding the world of more mundane foes.
As she watched a great light speared down from Argus and across the sky, seemingly reaching out to encase the entire world, and as it struck the world trembled. She heard a mighty voice call out, echoing across the sands and within her very soul.
"Brother, your crusade is OVER."
The world trembled more, great landslides could be heard from the mountains, and then she saw as Sargeras was drawn out of the very soil of Azeroth and dragged towards Argus. Another mighty voice was heard, one that instilled fear in the priest as Sargeras cried out in his defeat.
And with that cry a sword formed in the fallen titan's hand and he plunged that sword towards the heart of Azeroth, towards the heart of Silithus.
Tela dropped the water flask, raised a shield and triggered her Hearthstone. She stared as the sword burned through the atmosphere, as the tip struck deep into the sands of Silithus and as the dust-storm, kicked up by the violence, approached. The sand glowed white with wild magic and she prayed to Elune that she'd make it in time.
She didn't. The glowing dust struck her, dropping her shield instantly, cutting through her armour and into her skin. And then the magic of the hearthstone activated and she felt herself falling, falling...
"Broken neck." Said the pathologist "At least, that's my prelim. No wallet, no phone, no ID."
"She doesn't need ID." said Castle
"You know her?"
Castle nodded and looked to Beckett
"Are you sure?" Asked Beckett. Then their attention was drawn by a crash, followed by what sounded like swearing, from further down the alley making everyone turn that way "Sergeant?"
"Cleared, ma'am." he said as he pulled his gun
"NYPD" Called out Beckett as she drew her own in one hand and her badge in the other "Come out, slowly, with your hands up."
A face appeared from behind the overturned trash cans that had made the noise "You know, human, that it's rather impolite to point guns at people."
"When I'm investigating a murder and find someone sneaking around the scene then I'm going to point guns at them, no matter how impolite it is."
The face cocked to one side "Considering how much noise I just made, I don't think that sneaking is an accurate description of what I was doing."
Beckett rolled her eyes as she heard Castle snicker behind "No, then what would you call it?"
"Crashing, banging." The woman shrugged as she stood up, towering over everyone "I may not be a rogue but even I can sneak better than that."
Beckett turned to the sergeant, raising her eyebrow in question "No one passed the line, ma'am."
"Well, the thing is, we cleared this alley and we didn't find you and so you must have been hiding which does imply sneaking."
"Or I simply wasn't here when you looked, which I wasn't." The woman looked around "Where is here anyway? I don't recognise it and I've been to all the human cities that I know of."
Beckett finally took in the clothing that she was wearing, the long, pointed ears and the staff strapped across her back "Sergeant?"
"Check to see if there are any cosplay gatherings happening in the city."
"Ma'am." He nodded then headed off
Beckett turned back to the woman "What's your name and what are you doing here?"
"It is impolite to demand a name when you have not yet introduced yourself but, my name is Tela Dua'viiya and..." Tela looked around "I appear to be lost. I do not recognise this city."
"I'm detective Beckett and I'm here investigating the murder of the young woman behind me." She indicated to were the uniforms were now lowering the woman to the ground "As you are here in suspicious circumstances, and there appears to be blood on your skirt, I'm treating you as person of interest in her murder." Beckett turned to the pathologist "Estimated time of death?"
"Between midnight and about 3am."
Beckett turned back to Tela "Where were you between midnight and three am?"
"I really couldn't say as I don't know what time it is here nor how it relates to where I was. Although, moments ago, where I was it was later than it appears to be here." Tela looked over to the body "I can also say that I did not kill her."
"Between four and seven hours ago."
"I would have been asleep in my room at the Legerdemain in Dalaran."
"And someone there would be willing to confirm that?"
"I'm sure that the inn-keep would be more than willing to do so."
"Dalaran, not a city that I know of, where is that precisely?"
"Presently, floating above the Broken Isles of Azeroth."
Beckett wiped her hand across her face in frustration "Will you drop the cosplay act already and what is it with that getup?"
"Cosplay? Getup?" Tela looked confused "A local colloquialism that I do not understand. You humans have so many."
Beckett started to remonstrate with her but Castle stepped forward and placed his hand upon her arm "Beckett" he whispered "Look at her ears, really look."
Beckett looked and felt her eyes widening "They're real." She whispered
"I think she's telling the truth but you've been talking past each other because of wrong assumptions." Castle said in a deep, measured tone "Tread carefully as this may escalate into a diplomatic incident that is, quite literally, out of this world." And then ruined it "Hah, I've always wanted to say that."
Beckett turned back to the tall woman "Who, what, are you, really and where do you come from?"
"I am Tela Dua'viiya of the Kaldorei, Starcaller and High Priest of Azeroth."
"Shite" whispered Beckett to herself "I must apologise, High Priest, as my partner just pointed out, I've been working on wrong assumptions."
"Quite understandable, detective, you're doing your job to protect you city. And, please, do call me Tela, titles are so cumbersome."
"Well, welcome to New York City." Beckett tapped her chin "Can you tell me how you got here?"
"Not... really." Tela shook her head "I do not really know myself. If I was a mage or a warlock who has better understanding of portals then I may be able to guess better but I am a priest and portals are not our thing. All I know is that I was caught up in a... magical storm... that interacted with my hearthstone when I activated it and it threw me here instead of to Stormwind."
"I thought you said that you were in Dalaran."
"I was but my hearthstone is set to take me Stormwind."
"Why the difference?"
"Stormwind has an Auction House where I can sell the goods I produce or bring in."
"Is that how you got the blood on your skirt? Bringing in goods?"
Tela smiled "Yes, detective, I was killing bandits and looting their corpses."
"You kill bandits in your world?" Although Beckett was trying to maintain her neutrality her shock was showing through
"Not always but the Twilight Cultists are trying to bring about the end of all life on Azeroth and we simply won't stand for that."
"All life... but that..." Beckett was shocked
"Yes, it would kill them as well. They have been influenced by the Old Gods and believe, falsely, that if they bring about the end of life then they will be raised up." Tela looked pointedly at Beckett "Have you not had such cults yourself?"
"We've had some cults that have been very bad but not to the point that they were trying to destroy all life. Must be rough on your world."
"It can be but, like all worlds, it has its charms as well." Tela looked thoughtful "Especially trying has been the recent demonic invasion that we have, I believe, now beaten off." She paused "Do you have any other questions detective?"
"Many but they'll have to wait as I have a murder investigation that I need to solve. I'll take you to the station where you can speak with my captain who can then put you in touch with the correct authorities. Considering that you're from another world and that you seem to have a high rank will probably mean that you're going to be greeted and feted by the mayor at the very least and possibly even federal government will step in."
"I do not make a good diplomat and the king would probably be horrified if he found out." Tela paused "Either that, or he would laugh. No, he'd definitely laugh - he has a terrible sense of humour."
"A high Priest isn't a good diplomat?"
"I have blood on my skirt." Beckett nodded in understanding as Tela looked after the wagon that took the body away "If you want to know who killed the young woman, why don't you just ask her?"
"Ah, because she's dead?"
"Her body has ceased to function, yes, but her spirit is still here." She turned back to Beckett "I believe it will be a simple matter to resurrect her."
"I have a question." Said Castle and Tela indicated that he should go on "How is it that you speak our language? Is that through more magic?"
"No magic. It is the common tongue of the Alliance, the language of humans and all in the Alliance speak it. Now, come, we should go raise your young woman and see if she knows who killed her."
Police Station: Briefing
Captain Roy Montgomery had just set down the phone when the doors to the lift and four people stepped into the station, at least one of whom he needed to talk to "Beckett, get in here."
Beckett turned to him "Right away sir" she turned back to her companions, spoke softly to them and then walked into his office "What can I help you with, sir?"
"I just got an interesting call from the pathologist. He was upset that you interrupted his autopsy of the murdered person. Apparently, you told him to take some blood samples, x-rays and temperature and then to leave. When he got back it appears that you had walked out with the body of the victim."
"Yes, sir. I was about to come to speak to you about that as its got... complicated."
"How has it got complicated, detective?"
"Sir, one of the women you saw me walking in with was the murder victim. A short discussion with her so far indicates that we're also going to have to charge her murderer with rape as well."
"I see." Montgomery leaned forward "And just how is it that a murder victim is walking around alive? See, I'm having difficulty in processing the fact that these two conditions are mutually exclusive and yet seems to apply to our victim."
"That would be because of our other guest, captain, she used... ah... magic to... ah... resurrect the victim."
"Magic? Resurrection? Detective, next you'll be telling me that Christ, himself, is going to walk through the door. I haven't heard such tales since one of my children tried to explain how her invisible pet dog ate her homework."
"After what I've seen today, sir, I wouldn't be so quick to dismiss the pet dog." He looked at her, his scepticism apparent "Sir, the morgue is under 24 hour surveillance video. I've put a temporary lock down on it because once this gets out its going to cause an uproar and its already going to be difficult to prove a murder charge with the victim walking around."
"I see, I'll look at it later." He paused in consideration "Who is our guest?"
"Her name's Tela Dua'viiya and she's a High Priest of Azeroth." She looked meaningfully at him "Sir, she's from another world and, from what I can make out, she's high up in her society and well respected. If we handle this wrong we may have a diplomatic incident that would make dealing with the mayor look like child's play."
"Detective, I have children. Dealing with the mayor is what I do for relaxation after the child's play..." he held up his hand as she was about to protest "But I get your point." He nodded "I'll have to meet her but tell me more about the investigation first and then I'll make my decision."
"Yes sir, on her word we now know who killed and raped her but, as far as any court's concerned, it's only hearsay. Her word against his and so we're going to need to find the evidence to prove that he did it. I was just about to sit down with the victim to discuss what happened to her, where and when. From there we'd have a good place to start looking for the evidence needed."
"The rape, when did that happen?"
"About a week before the killing."
"Why didn't she come forward then?"
"She tried, sir, but from what she says she wasn't having a lot of luck with the officers at that precinct so she left and went into hiding."
Montgomery let out a heavy sigh "There's always something else. Alright, I'll look into it. How is our victim?"
"Shaken and clingy but, I think that the... experience... has made her... more resilient."
Montgomery raised his eyebrow "Who's she clinging to?"
"Our priestly friend."
Montgomery's eyebrow stayed raised "And how's our... diplomatic... visitor taking that?"
"Priestly, sir" Montgomery waved his hand to indicate that she should explain "With kindness, patience and understanding, sir."
"You seem surprised by that, detective."
"Sir, when we first met she still had blood on her from the bandits she'd just killed."
Montgomery breath hissed between his teeth "I... see. I'll let you get back to your investigation and, I agree, keep these two under wraps for now. I'll keep the mayor... informed." He gave her a pointed look "Bring this bastard down, detective. I do not want this scum on my streets."
Police Station: Interrogation
When Becket left the captains office she ran into Castle "What have you done with our guests?"
"I've left them in the interrogation room."
"What? I've got Esposito looking after them."
She rolled her eyes and headed for interrogation
"We had a fascinating discussion."
"I'm sure you did."
"Did you know that they've had several demon invasions? Actual demons?" Becket raised her eyebrow "The first happened several thousand years ago, brought in by their then queen in her quest for power."
"You seem somewhat taken by her."
"Oh, of course not." Beckett scoffed "Still, considering that we need to keep the fact that Haley is back to being alive a secret for now..." she pointedly looked at Castle
"What, no. No way. I just do not have room for a seven foot tall Amazon and her sidekick."
"But, you're normally so hospitable to women in distress."
"Charming, yes. Courteous, definitely. Willing to help in any way I can, sure. But that doesn't mean that I can magically create two new rooms in my apartment."
"Are you sure...?" Beckett asked just as she opened the door to interrogation
"What, well I really don't know..."
"No, I can't make two new rooms magically." Said Tela, surprising Beckett "For that, you'd probably need to speak to a mage but I am merely a humble healer. And I am not an Amazon either, whatever that is."
"Ah... yeah, umm..." Beckett mumbled before getting back on track "Right, Esposito, out."
"Ladies." Esposito nodded to the two guests and left
"Such a fine, young, man." Said Tela
Beckett looked at her and then went on "Right... yes, well. On with what we're here for."
"What more do you need from us?" Asked Haley
"For starters, we're going to keep you here and out of the public eye. As my captain says, proving a murder charge is going to be difficult with the victim walking around."
"Your priests do not have resurrection capability?"
"No. Many don't even have basic first aid capability. Some of our paramedics have, occasionally, been able to resuscitate people but the... down time has been measured in minutes, not hours. Your resurrection of Haley is a complication but I believe we can work around it." She waited until they both indicated their understanding "First of all, we want to keep you both here and out of sight to squash any rumours of Haley being alive." She turned to Haley "Secondly, Haley, we need you to tell us exactly what happened, where and when."
"Why? When I can tell you who did it?"
"Because, when we get into court its going to be his word against yours and so we need to find the evidence that proves that he knowingly, and with malice aforethought, killed you."
"You will... question him?" asked Tela
"Yes, of course." Said Beckett
"Then allow me to sit in when you do so."
"Why? Can you tell if he's lying?"
"That I cannot do but, with my training as a priest, I can... encourage him to speak only truth."
"That would be... helpful."
"A warning though." Beckett nodded "He cannot speak a truth that he does not know nor can he speak a truth that he does not believe to be true."
"That... makes sense and all the more reason to keep you hidden. Anything else?"
"Yes, I cannot force him to speak."
"Then, we'll just have to make sure that he... opens up." Beckett turned back to Haley "Now, I know that this is going to hurt but we need you to tell us everything."
"It won't hurt as much as being murdered by a person I trusted." Said Haley, she took a deep breath "So, last Monday..."
Police Station: Action
Beckett pushed her way out of the interrogation room "Esposito" she said as she handed him a note "I need you to contact Haley's dealer to find out what sort of gun that he sold her. A serial number would help but I doubt if we'll get that lucky." She turned to his partner "Kevin, I need you to get a warrant and retrieve all of Bree Busch's texts that were made on the night of the murder. Oh, and check her purchases that night as well."
"And what are we doing?" asked Castle
"We, are going to the studio to see if we can find a bullet hole... and to start to shake up the guilty."
Bree opened the door after the knock "Can I help you? She asked the two people standing outside
Beckett raised her badge "I'm detective Beckett and this is my partner, Castle, can we come in?"
"Of course." Bree said as she stepped back, waving them in "What's this about?"
"We're presently investigating the murder of Haley Blue and would like to ask you and your husband some questions."
"Haley's dead?" Bree was shocked "But, I only saw her yesterday. I... what happened?"
"That's what we're trying to find out. When did you see her yesterday and what were you talking about?"
"We were talking about why she'd left and if she was coming back."
"And did you offer her any... enticements?"
"Well, with her strange behaviour over the last week, the fact that she had disappeared, so I... I offered her drugs. As much as she wanted."
"I thought she was off the drugs? That's what its saying in the media." Said Castle as he wandered about the back of the room.
"She was, we sent her through rehab and supported her when she came out. But, she must have relapsed. It's the only explanation for her disappearance over the last week."
"The only explanation?" asked Beckett as her phone buzzed "I can think of quite a few others. We just got the toxicology report back and she was clean."
"You must understand, we'd sunk everything we had into her. If she didn't produce the album we were finished."
"And she left here alive?"
"Yes, of course. What is this..."
"And what did you do after she left?"
"I went home and went to bed."
"Yes..." Bree paused thoughtfully "No, wait, I stopped at the shop and bought some items."
"When did you get these panels replaced?" asked Castle from behind her
Bree spun around, frightened and confused by the sudden change in direction "Wait, what? We've never had those panels replaced."
"No, these panels are definitely new." Said Castle as he pulled a couple off
"What are you hiding?" Beckett asked Bree
"A bullet hole by the looks, a large one."
Ian Busch pushed through the door "What's going here, what's happening Bree?"
"These officers are..." said Bree but Beckett cut her off
"Bree Busch, you're under arrest for the murder of Haley Blue." She said as she moved forward to cuff her
"Bree? What have you done?" said Ian as her face shattered in shock.
Police Station: Prelims
"You didn't have to arrest her." Said Castle "We know she's innocent."
"I know but I wanted to see how her husband, the actual murderer, would react." Said Beckett "I thought it was quite informative how he immediately shifted the blame onto her."
"Well, I suppose. Not the most loving of husbands." Said Castle "But I don't think putting her through this sort of stress was really called for."
Beckett shrugged and then looked towards Kevin as he approached and raised her eyebrow in question "We got the transcripts of the text messages sent and the time. We've also managed to confirm the lipstick that Bree bought matched the lipstick used on Haley." Said Kevin
"And" said Esposito "I've managed to confirm that the gun that Haley's dealer supplied her with was a thirty eight, same as the bullet pulled out of the wall."
"And" said Kevin "We've tested Tela's... truthiness... ability to see if it works through windows, which it does, and now Tela and Haley are waiting in the observation room with the captain."
"Good work, all of you." Beckett smiled grimly "Now let's go bag a killer."
Police Station: Endings and beginnings
Bree sprung up as Beckett came in "I did not kill her, I couldn't do that."
"Bree, perhaps a plea deal, I can't lose you for twenty years..." said Ian
Bree glared at her husband "I can only tell the truth."
"Most commendable of you." Said Beckett "Tell me, do you know anything of these texts sent from your phone?"
"What texts?" asked Bree
"Oh, there's 'He's told me everything, we need to talk' and there's the 'I'm going to divorce him, come to the studio and we'll talk'."
"What I didn't..."
"There are quite a few texts sent from your phone to Haley's after midnight."
"But, I didn't... I was asleep in bed..." Bree's eye's opened in shock as she turned to look at her husband
"And then there's the killer, the one from Haley 'Ok, I'll see you soon.'" Said Beckett "Of course, by the time that she realised who had actually sent the texts it was too late, wasn't it Ian?"
"I..." Ian stumbled
"You waited until Bree was deep asleep from the sleeping pill she used and then, using her phone, you lured Haley to her death."
"She was going to ruin me, tell the world..."
"Tell the world what, Ian?" demanded Bree
"She wanted it, all her touching and hugging, she wanted it..."
The door opened and Haley walked in "But I said no, didn't I Ian? Screamed it, in fact."
Ian staggered up from his seat, slammed into the wall as he tried to get away from his accuser "Yes... but I killed you, you can't be here... I killed you."
Two uniforms pushed in to restrain him as Beckett stated "Ian Busch, you are under arrest for the rape and murder of Haley Blue." Then she turned to the shocked Bree "And, of course, all charges against you have been dropped." Then, looking at the two women staring at each other, quietly left the room.
"We really do need to talk, Bree." Said Haley
"Medical technology has come a long way. This is..." She waved her arm "...experimental but I am so glad it worked."
"Why didn't you come to me?"
"I tried... tried going to the police as well." She looked down "But I couldn't and so I went into hiding, to try and work things out myself. That didn't work out too well either."
"I'm so sorry, for misjudging you, for everything, for... him. I..."
"You don't need to apologise for him, his actions are his." She glared the way that her torturer had gone "And I accept your apology for what you did."
The two stood in a brittle silence before Haley went on "I'd still like to make the album but..." Bree looked at her in shock "I can't come live with you as we did, not after..."
"Of course, but, where will you be staying?"
Haley looked out the window and then indicated the tall woman out there speaking with the mayor "I'll be staying with the High Priest for awhile." She laughed "She doesn't actually have anywhere but she's said that I can stay with her until I'm on my feet and I feel... safe with her." She looked back to Bree "You need to divorce him, Bree, I cannot have him having any claim to what we create."
Bree looked out at the tall woman and nodded "Of course, I'll contact my lawyer immediately."
Police Station: Diplomacy
The mayor walked into the polices station, his body guards right behind him, looking around he caught sight of the person he wanted "Captain?"
"Mister Mayor, a pleasure sir." Montgomery shook the mayors hand "What can the NYPD do for you today?"
"I'm here for a quick meet of our... guest. This isn't an official meet but can you introduce me?"
"Of course, sir, this way."
"How's the investigation going?"
"We just wrapped it up sir and the correct person has now been arrested for the rape and murder of the singer."
"Excellent, and this is?"
"Detective Kate Beckett."
"Ah, the Niki Heat, a pleasure. The captain has told me a lot about your excellent work in keeping our fine city safe."
"Thank you sir but I couldn't do it without my team."
"Of course, we politicians do know that we wouldn't be where we are without the hard work of the people in the background." He looked around at the others "Thank you, all of you."
"And this" said Montgomery "Is Tela..."
"Tela Dua'viiya, our visitor from another world." The mayor stretched out and grasped her hand "A pleasure..." he stayed that way a bit and then shook his head "Excuse me for staring but you're not what we're used to around here."
Tela smiled and gave a polite dip of her head "Of course."
"I understand that your arrival is more accident that planned diplomacy but I've managed to have the city accept you as one any way with full diplomatic immunity."
"Thank you." Tela said, smiling
"We've set you up in the same building as Castle here." He looked over to Castle "Castle, look after her."
"I will and I'm sure that Alexis will be more than happy to show her the best stores."
"Good, good." He turned back to Tela "Hate to rush you, as you've only just got here and the culture shock is probably a bit much, but with the murder investigation that you were involved in my lawyers tell me that we're going to have to get you out in front of the city so we can explain how a murdered person is still walking around which means a press conference."
Tela dipped her head politely again "I understand."
"Good, good." He turned back to Montgomery and indicated that he should follow as he headed back to the lift "I'll let your people get with my people to schedule a time when we can get Tela, the detective and the singer all in front of the press at the same time."
"I'm sure we can do that."
"Good, good." He stopped at the lift and looked around the station again "And thank all your people for me, they do the city proud."
The mayor entered the lift and was gone.