I helped Kanesha home, her face streaked with tears. There were still demons out there and there was the question of who had killed Mr. Clem so I didn’t have to.
And apologized for it. I’d turned around, but there had been nobody there, just a silhouette running into the distance. The only thing odd about it was that I was pretty sure whoever it was had been a white man.
Or maybe not a man at all. The only thing Kanesha wanted to do was lock herself in her room and cry. I left her to it, shoved a note under the door saying she was welcome to what remained of the ice cream, and walked out into the night. Curfew or no curfew, I couldn’t be inside four walls. The bike was mysteriously gone, but I knew she hadn’t been stolen.
She’d gone back to her mistress. Possibly reporting on me, too, I didn’t know. I didn’t know her full capabilities. So, I walked, the gun under my jacket, head down.
So I didn’t have to. If I had killed him it would have been closer to murder than self-defense. And it would have let something loose, something I wasn’t ready to face. That red moment, that knowledge, that feeling that somebody was going to die.
That was part of me, and it wasn’t a part of me I liked.
Then I heard a bike. No, the bike. Thruor. “Are you alright?”
“I think so. Kanesha’s father is dead. But I didn’t kill him.”
She hopped off the bike, walking next to me, parking it without really much care. I knew why now. It…she…could look after herself.
“Somebody else did. And apologized. I think I was about to…lose it.”
“And somebody stepped in to make sure you didn’t. You might have hurt Kanesha.”
I digested that. “So…”
“That part of you should be locked away right now. If it gets out, you might not be able to control it. But it wasn’t me or one of mine.”
“No, but it wasn’t anyone who should have been in Southeast, either. Not brown enough.”
She laughed. “Oh, I’m sure it was somebody I know. I just don’t know who. But we need to put in some salle time.”
I nodded. “Before that happens again.”
“Exactly. Learn to control it and only your enemies will die.”
I let out a breath. “I wanted to kill him and didn’t want to, all at the same time. I’m glad I didn’t. Kanesha might never have spoken to me again.”
And maybe that had been part of it too.
“One piece of advice. Don’t get too attached to her.”
I shook my head, my lips twitching. “I think it’s too late.”
“She is not one of us, for all that she has honor.”