Author: StarLight Massacre
Title: Lycanthrope Factory
Warning: Slash, violence, moresome, language, blood, Mpreg, crossover.
Disclaimer: I do not own anything from Harry Potter; all rights go to J. K. Rowling. I do not own anything from Anita Blake: Vampire Hunter; all rights belong to Laurel K. Hamilton. I make no money for this piece of fictional writing and never will.
Summary: When a Lycanthrope factory is uncovered in Saint Louis, the preternatural community is thrown into panic. Where have all the lycans found in the factory come from? The survivors are not coping outside of their cages and the operators of the factory have slipped through the fingers of the police. It’s a rush for Anita Blake to find them and stop them from starting another factory in another state, while simultaneously taking in a small boy with the brightest green eyes she has ever seen and a past as curious, strange and completely unbelievable as anyone she has ever met.
Chapter One - Exposure
Anita Blake was almost sick, for the first time in what seemed like ages at a crime scene, when she saw what she had been pulled in on. A Lycanthrope factory.
Cages upon cages of bloodied silver were stacked around like a veterinary practise, only these cages were not for cats or small dogs, but for people. People who were too big to be stuffed into these tiny cages.
There were bodies strewn around the floor, those that were miraculously still alive had been sent to the nearest hospital, including two little boys, who were not expected to survive.
The ‘operators’ who ran this place had had a tip off that the police were on their way and they had killed as many of their ‘experiments’ as they could before fleeing. Only four people had survived the massacre, out of fifty-seven. Originally nine had survived, but three had died on the way to the hospital and two had died shortly after reaching the hospital, they were all waiting anxiously for the update to tell them that all of them had died.
Anita surveyed the scene and felt sick as she had to step over bodies every other moment just to get around. Most of them had been shot or stabbed, but some had been decapitated completely, their heads missing, which put vampire into her mind. But if they were vampires, why hadn’t they fought back?
The half burned paperwork had been recovered and it listed five ‘doctors’ only five, against twenty decapitated people, possible vampires, they should have been able to overwhelm the ‘doctors’ and win their freedom, but it looked like they hadn’t fought at all, there were no defensive wounds or grazes on any of them.
There were half destroyed cabinets, half burned filing cabinets, the police had gotten here before the fire had truly taken hold, which was a stroke of luck because they had paperwork, the contents of the cabinets and all the dead people to process and use for evidence.
What got her the most was the small glass bottles of Were-X, Were-XI, Were-XII and Were-XV. Lycanthrope vaccines for werewolves, wereleopards, wererats and weretigers. Anita would bet Sigmund, her favourite stuffed penguin, that they weren’t being used as vaccines.
She examined some of the bodies, checking for needle marks, only two had needle marks in the bends of their elbows and upper arms and from their ‘specimen number’ they were the newest editions to the factory.
There was an entire laboratory mapped out in this warehouse in the middle of nowhere, what made her stomach roil were the autopsy labs, there were two of them and they were built with restraint in mind and one room was covered in blood. Dead bodies didn’t bleed in a spray large enough to cover walls, only live bodies did.
One autopsy lab was scrubbed clean, everything in perfect order and already being photographed and examined. The other lab still had a body on the metal table, a body that was strapped down with her chest fully opened from groin to breastbone, you didn’t need to strap down dead bodies. Anita turned and had to hunch over her stomach just a bit as bile threatened to slip up her throat.
“It is hard to stomach.” Zerbrowski said soothingly, for once not rubbing her nose in the dead body. “Merloni puked his guts two minutes after being here, tried to claim he’s been feeling sick all weekend.”
“This is…its indescribable!”
“It’s not often that a crime scene leaves you speechless.” Zerbrowski pointed out.
“This is worse than a horror show Zerbrowski, look at this place! Live autopsies, a cabinet full of god knows what, Lycanthrope vaccines, how the hell did these people get hold of so many vaccines?! They’re for hospital use only; you can’t get them anywhere else!”
“That’s what Dolph is trying to work out. There’s crates of it in the chest freezers, others we can’t identify and one crate that is unlabelled, we need to find these people Anita, before they meet up again and start all over again in a new state.”
Anita nodded. “What about the four survivors?”
“Two survivors.” Zerbrowski said. “One died on the operating table, another one reacted badly to the oxygen mask of all things, we don’t know what’s been done to them, so we have no information to give the medical staff, so they are doing the basics, but even the basics are killing them.”
“Was it the two boys?” Anita asked.
“One of them, the bigger one, the littlest one is still alive, surprisingly.”
“I don’t even know where to start.” Anita admitted as she looked around the torture factory, every room held more horror, more bodies, more evidence of a higher level of abuse.
Anita left the factory after she had done all she could and headed home. She felt like crying when she had found the body of the teenage girl. Specimen one-ninety-eight. The numbers went up to Specimen two-three-one or at least that had been the highest record they could find and it had been on one of the new ones still with the needle marks. There had only been fifty-seven people in that factory, including the survivors, so where were the other one hundred and seventy-four specimens? She had suggested digging up the surrounding area; Dolph had already called it in and started the ball rolling.
She made it home, which was lit up like a Christmas tree, signalling that her boys had made it home before her. She sighed; she had just wanted to cuddle up with Sigmund for a bit with no one watching so she could get rid of everything she had seen today. She couldn’t stop picturing the two boys who had been taken to the hospital, one of which was now dead, the other likely going to die during the night and the teenaged girl with the knife stuck in her head behind her ear.
She parked the jeep next to Micah’s car and headed to the house, the door opened and a smiling Nathaniel greeted her with a kiss, handing her a baby penguin mug of coffee. There was a reason she had come to love him.
“Micah’s in the kitchen, the Pard is over, I hope you don’t mind.” He said anxiously.
Anita shook her head as she kicked off her Nikes and sipped her coffee, walking into the kitchen to the greetings of the Pard.
Micah came to her with that lovely smile and kissed her, they ignored the cat calls from Caleb.
“What was the emergency?” Micah asked softly, taking in the comfort hold she had on her coffee mug.
“You won’t like it.” She sighed.
Micah’s eyes went guarded and she hated that she had caused it.
“What’s happened?” He asked as everyone quieted down. She sat down and felt every eye on her, she took another sip of coffee and placed the mug down, but she kept a hand wrapped around it.
“They’ve uncovered a Lycanthrope factory in Saint Louis.”
Micah stiffened, Merle cursed, but many others just looked confused.
“What’s a Lycanthrope factory?” Noah asked.
“They experiment on live Lycanthropes.” Micah spat. “No one has gone missing, we would have noticed, where were they getting the lycans from? It couldn’t have been from any of the surrounding states, we would have heard from their clan leaders.”
“That’s where it gets worse. They were actually very clever in how they operated.” Anita said quietly. “They had crates and crates of different Lycanthrope vaccines stored in the factory, they weren’t kidnapping Lycanthropes and experimenting on them, they were abducting humans, injecting them with the vaccines and then experimenting on them after they had turned.”
Micah looked both livid and sick as his hands clenched on the table top.
“How many?” Merle asked. “How many people?”
“Each person was given a specimen number, it went right up to two hundred and thirty-one and that’s just the highest number we could find. The organisers were tipped off and they slaughtered as many experiments as possible, one was still strapped down to an honest to god autopsy table, they did live autopsies on specimens.”
Noah ran out of the room and Anita took a shaky sip of cooling coffee to calm herself. She shouldn’t have really been saying anything about the factory to anyone else, but she had to tell someone. It was too horrific to keep to herself and she trusted everyone in this room to keep their mouths shut, even Caleb, who Merle would beat into line if he said or did anything.
“Were…were there any survivors?” Micah asked, licking his pouty lower lip.
“Initially there were nine. Three died on the way to the hospital, two died shortly after arriving, one died on the operating table and another one reacted badly when the medical staff gave him oxygen and subsequently died. But that was the last update before I left, who knows if the last two are alive still.”
“All two hundred and thirty died?!” Zane asked.
“No. There were only fifty-seven specimens there, including the survivors, if they numbered them in order then one hundred and seventy-four are missing and presumed dead. They’re going to start digging up the gardens and the surrounding areas for bodies.”
“Will you tell the coalition?” Micah asked mildly, leaving the decision up to her.
She thought about it, before sighing heavily. “You might need to, if the last two do somehow survive then they’ll need to be fostered or they’ll be sent to a safe house, I don’t want to send them from one prison to another.”
Micah nodded and left to call the coalition, Richard would know within the hour, she’d expect his phone call or a body visit tomorrow morning at the latest, until then, she was going to soak herself in a nice, long, hot bath.
Anita felt her belly tighten at the sight of Richard Zeeman, local Ulfric, that was wolf king, and one time sweetie, ex-fiancé and junior high science teacher.
He never failed to arouse her, just by being near her, it wasn’t fair, but she tried to deal with the situation at hand. He was angry. Pissed was probably a better word to use as angry seemed too mild for the spitting rage in those chocolate brown eyes.
She blinked her eyes when Richard growled. He had been speaking and she had been too busy looking at the splay of new muscles he had obtained through weightlifting since the last time she had seen him. Was it redundant to weightlift when you were a werewolf with super human strength? No, not when every other werewolf had super human strength too, plus the added muscle definition wasn’t hard on the eyes.
“You’re not listening again!” Richard shouted.
Anita jumped and looked at that tall, broad, raging werewolf and grew angry herself. Defensive.
“Is there or is there not a Lycanthrope factory in Saint Louis?!” He asked again, his voice disparaging and holding the bite of a growl from his beast, his two enforcers moving just a shade closer to him. He didn’t believe it, couldn’t bring himself to believe it. He would likely deny it until given proof, but was her word enough for proof these days? He knew she didn’t lie, but would he believe her?
“There was.” She answered him finally. “The police were tipped off about it and raided it, but the organisers were tipped off as well and trashed the place, killed the experiments and set it on fire before fleeing.”
“So there’s nothing left? Nothing to trace them with? They escaped to go and do this in another state?!”
“They didn’t have much time before the police arrived, the fire didn’t take hold so most of the paperwork survived, as far as we can tell there were five ‘doctors’ who were the organisers of this factory. We found bottles of Were-X, Were-XI, Were-XII and Were-XV.”
Richard went pale. It had been a bad dose of Were-X that had given him the werewolf gene in college.
“No Were-XIV?” Jamil questioned.
“Not that we’ve found so far, but most of the cabinets were toppled. Forensics are going through every shard of glass and taking samples of every liquid. I’d be surprised if they didn’t find Were-XVI and Were-XVII somewhere in the mess as well.”
“You think they would have had the vaccines for Werebear and Wereanaconda?” Richard asked, going pale again.
“You didn’t see the amount of smashed vaccines, they had boxes upon boxes of unused needles and frozen bottles of unlabelled liquids, it must have taken them years to amass so much equipment and vaccine in one place.”
“Micah said something about autopsy tables.”
“Two autopsy labs, they did live autopsies Richard. Strapped the Were down and performed a live autopsy on them while they were awake and aware.”
“How do you know they weren’t unconscious?”
“The blood spray patterns, too big a spray for an unconscious or drugged body, they were struggling as much as the restraints allowed and flinging blood all over that room.”
Richard looked horrified and sick. It wasn’t a wonder, of all the lycanthropes in the preternatural communities of Saint Louis, Richard was the most naïve to human nature, he just did not want to see the bad in people. It was one of his only faults, though not his biggest one.
“Were there any survivors?” He whispered, all the rage from before wiped away.
“Nine, but three died on the way to hospital, two died upon arrival, one died on the operating table, one died from being given oxygen and one died during the night after the nurses tried to clean her up with a sponge bath, they think she may have reacted to the soapy water. Only one is left and he’s not doing so well.” Anita answered softly; Dolph had updated her that morning over her coffee.
“I want to see him, but I can’t!” Richard lamented, starting to pace in a small circle in front of her.
“There’s nothing you can do Richard, they’re keeping him sedated, they’re talking about transferring him directly to a safe house as they don’t know what was done to him, what strains he has or how dangerous he is.”
“What about his blood work?”
Anita shook her head, her black curls flying. “It’s coming back a mess, whatever those people did to him, they screwed him over completely, screwed them all over completely. No blood test is registering, no sense can be made of any test results, the doctors are combing through the salvaged paperwork to try and figure out what those monsters were trying to do, but half of the pages are badly singed and there is water damage from where the firefighters put out the budding fire, some of it has been made illegible.”
Richard combed thick fingers through his shoulder length chestnut hair with its copper highlights and let out a shuddering breath.
“He can’t go to a safe house; he’ll never come back out Anita!”
“I know that, but no one from the coalition is willing to foster him. The kid might not even survive and people are already condemning him to another prison!”
“Kid?” Richard hissed, picking up immediately on the word.
Anita let out a suffering sigh; she hadn’t wanted to tell him that it had been a kid.
“He looks to be in his early to mid-teens.” She told him reluctantly, watching as he sucked in a breath through his teeth. “But it’s impossible to date his age as we don’t know who he is, where he’s from and can’t pull any blood, x-rays or even put him on a heart monitor, but he’s about four foot eleven, taking into consideration he might have been in these cages for weeks, the doctors think it may have stunted his growth as he goes through puberty, so they are guessing in the age range around thirteen to fifteen, but speculate he could be as young as twelve.”
“None of the students from Seckman have gone missing.” Richard stated.
“No, the police think that they were all pulled from out of state. They’re running missing persons to the photos from the crime scene to see if any match up.”
“I’d take him in if I could, but there’d be too many questions!” Richard gripped his hair as he paced, sounding so distressed she wanted to hug him, but he wasn’t her sweetie anymore, she couldn’t bear to touch him without it dissolving into something that required a lot less clothing.
“I’ll take him in.”
As soon as the words left her mouth she wanted to take them back. She had no idea why she had said it, why she had offered, but she did…she wanted that look on Richard’s face gone, that distressed, frustrated, useless look and as he turned to look at her with a shock slacked mouth and hopeful eyes it was almost worth it.
He picked her up and hugged her tightly, almost crushing her.
“Oh Anita, you will? You really will?” He choked out.
She should have said no, that she had made a mistake, that she hadn’t meant it, but all that came out of her mouth was a small “Yes.” And Richard buried his face in her mane of curls and she felt his shoulders shaking, but there was no sound from him as he sobbed silently into her hair.
“This really matters to you, doesn’t it?” She asked shocked.
He nodded. “I can’t see anyone go to those torture houses for Lycanthropes, not a child, definitely not a child. I would have taken him in, but the school would have asked questions why, the media, the police, it’s too dangerous for me, but…thank you Anita! Thank you.”
She smiled; it wasn’t often that this side of Richard came out these days, but she was happy to see it.
“I have to go.” She said reluctantly, breaking his grip on her even more reluctantly. “I’m going to visit him in an hour and it’ll take me that long to get through the police sentries and all the medical stations.”
“Let me know what’s happening?” He asked uncertainly.
She nodded. “Of course, I’ll call you as soon as I’m out.”
“Thank you.” He said once again and they left the house together, Anita for her jeep, Richard, Jamil and Shang-Da to Richard’s car.
Anita sighed as she looked through the glass window at the boy bound to the bed. They had actually handcuffed him to the bed even though he was unconscious still. They didn’t seem to realise if he woke up and he was as dangerous as they believed and as strong as she thought he was then the brick walls wouldn’t keep him contained.
He looked so small, so fragile and delicate in the bed, half-starved and sickly looking with skin that was so pale it looked grey, his blue, blue spider web of veins visible through his papery skin. She thought that his hair was supposed to be black, but it was so lacklustre and dull that it looked thin, almost colourless but with a hint of a darker shade of grey that made him look terminally ill. His hair had been shorn unevenly, as though whoever had done it hadn’t cared what he looked like afterwards and just wanted the nuisance that was his hair gone. All of the specimens, male and female, had had shorn hair, but a few of them had shown signs of new hair growth and this boy seemed to have the longest hair, it was only an inch long, two inches in some places, but it allowed them to see the frightful condition of it and that helped the doctors diagnose malnutrition and various vitamin deficiencies, but they hadn’t yet worked out if it was safe to give him the vitamins he was deficient it, so it didn’t really do them any good knowing in the first place.
The doctors had chanced putting him on an oxygen mask, but he seemed to be responding to it better than the other boy who had come in with him, or at least he hadn’t died from it yet. He seemed to be responding to the basic medications he had been given and even remained under sedation, but every new medication they gave him could react with the unknown that was his own body and kill him. It was now a waiting game until he woke up, if he woke up at all.
“Have you found any of them from the missing person’s files?” She asked Detective Clive Perry, a handsome, soft spoken black man, on her way out of the room that looked into the young boy’s quarantined, sealed room.
“Good Morning Ms Blake.” He replied politely, he was the most polite man she had ever known. “We haven’t found any links yet, but Sergeant Storr is hopeful.”
Anita nodded and carried on, she would need to go and visit Jean-Claude tonight and update him to what had been happening in his city plus she had to call and update Micah and Richard.
Jean-Claude sat as still as a statue behind his black lacquered desk in his living room at the Circus of the Damned and Anita sighed. She hated it when he did that unnatural stillness that all the old vamps could do. She half expected him to disappear every time she blinked.
“Are you sure about this information?” He asked finally and Anita glared at him.
“Of course I’m sure about it!” She defended hotly.
“And you suspect that there were vampires in this factory, oui?”
“There were approximately twenty decapitated people opposed to the rest, who had just been stabbed or shot, why go to the trouble and the time consuming process of taking their heads if they weren’t worried about them living through being shot or stabbed and then blabbing about the whole operation going on to the police? It takes time to sever a head, time these people didn’t have much of after the tip off, they decapitated them first, which gave them no time to kill all of the other specimens, which is why we initially had nine survivors.”
“Initially had nine survivors?” Asher questioned from the chair he had been sat in since she had arrived.
Anita rubbed her eyes; it had been a long, long day.
“There’s one left, the others all died, some from the stupidest of reasons.”
“Like what?” Asked Jason, who was on the settee behind and a little to the left of her.
“One boy died when they gave him oxygen, a woman died from having a sponge bath, the doctors think she reacted to the soapy water and one died when they anaesthetised him preceding an operation.”
“That was dangerous.” Jean-Claude said mildly.
“He was bleeding heavily from a stab wound to the chest, he had a punctured lung, he was going to die anyway if they didn’t operate and they had no way of knowing what would happen when they put him under anaesthetic.”
“How is the one that is left alive?”
“In bad shape and not expected to live another night.”
“Is what Richard said this afternoon true? Did you offer to take him in?” Jason asked.
Anita nodded. “I won’t see him go from one prison to another Jason, even if it means I have to take him in myself. The coalition was informed and we advertised for a foster home for the, then two, survivors. No one wanted them, not one damn person would have housed one of them for a while as they adjusted to being outside of a cage, Richard wanted to do it, but couldn’t because of his job, so I was the only one left and I agreed.”
“That’s if he survives.” Jean-Claude cut in smoothly.
Anita glared at him, detecting the slight hint of jealousy in Jean-Claude’s voice, likely at having another ‘man’ in her life.
“He’s twelve Jean-Claude.” She took pleasure in seeing the shock in those eyes, then the anger at what had happened to a child in his city.
“We will find the perpetrators of this disgusting act.” He said softly. “They will not get away with doing this in my city.”
“The police are doing everything they can with the evidence from the actual factory, they’re digging for bodies in the surrounding area and we’re hoping the boy survives and wakes up to tell us anything he knows, the police particularly want physical descriptions of the ‘doctors’ who were in charge of the factory and any helpers or associates he may have seen, but that’s only if he wakes up.”
“I would feel more comfortable, ma petite, if the child were to stay in the Circus until we could assess his state and strength.”
“He’s on his death bed, what do you think he’s going to do?” Anita demanded.
“You know as well as I that appearances can be deceiving, this child may have hidden strength and I would sooner not risk you, or our lovely Nimir-raj and Nathaniel.”
He had mentioned Micah and Nathaniel on purpose. She knew it, to remind her that it wasn’t just her at risk if she was wrong. She could get the both of them killed as well, or at least injured. She ground her teeth together.
“Fine.” She spat out. “Have it your way, he can stay here until you’re finished assessing him and then he can stay with me.”
Because what else really could she do? Jean-Claude was right, what if she was wrong and she ended up losing two of the most important people to her? How could she live with herself then, knowing that it had been her decision that had gotten Micah and Nathaniel killed? It made sense to have the boy stay at the Circus, with all the Wererats and the hyenas running security detail, the vampires that lived here and the always visiting leopards and wolves, it would be that much safer for all involved if the boy was moved here first and then if it was proven that he wasn’t a threat, then he could have her spare bedroom if he wanted it, but just because Jean-Claude was right and his idea made sense, didn’t mean she had to like it.
A/N: I really, really shouldn’t be doing this, but the lack of Harry Potter/Anita Blake crossovers saddens me. There really should be more! So I’m posting this plot, and likely a few more, to boost numbers, just do not expect regular updates, because Rise of the Drackens is still my priority fic and that isn’t going to change, but I will update this fic when I can.
StarLight Massacre. X