A fine snow sifts down, turning red lights into glacé cherries as streetlights strew confetti. It’s a glimmer on the air but a bastard on the feet: in the thirteen minutes Creighton’s been on the balcony, she’s seen five people bite it. She winces, hands winding tighter on wrought iron, thinking “don’t think bite.” Especially since Louis is hovering (literally hovering, his Pierre Cardin oxfords easily inches above the grating), making shooing motions with his hands back towards the goldlit window. Creighton interrupts her circular breathing, learned during an unfortunate affair with a didgeridoo player during a high school summer program at Sarah Lawrence.
“I’m thinking,“ she snaps.
“And thus, being,” Louis replies, worrying his cufflinks, “but you will not be being for very much longer if Fiona suspects something.” Creighton produces several cigarette butts from a baggie in her coat pocket: Nat Sherman Fantasias.
“Et voila. My excuse. And never doubt my attention to detail.” She stretches her hand into the light: they’re all the pink ones. “Renfieldessa needed a smoke after the excitement.”
“I hate to ask” - it’s Louis’ turn to wince - “but just in case, have you any more of that vitamin, the one you used for Minerva?”
“It’s really difficult to get a non-hydroxylizable cholecalciferol.” Louis looks at her blankly. “You’re not allergic to the vitamin, exactly, so I need a metabolically stable cognate of the transient photoproduct, which is…” Louis frowns, starts to speak.
“It doesn’t even matter.” Creighton puts her hand on his cheek, then rapidly moves it to his shoulder. “I think I have it: a way to get us out of here safely, get Macky a scapegoat, and rein in our Amazons’ excesses.” She tosses her hair back, shuddering off the last shreds of faux-subservience, and they step back inside.
It’s absolutely drenched in blood, and the women are prancing around the mens’ slumped bodies. Upon a second perusal, one of them is alive - just passed out. “Dancing Queen” is on the stereo.
“It’s an ABBAttoir!” Creighton smirks over her shoulder. If it’s going to go badly, she thinks, at least I’ll end on a decent pun. She takes a deep breath, and wrenches the volume knob to zero. The sapphic vampire cult whips ‘round as one. The silence is sudden and absolute.
“What is the human doing?” Fiona screeches, and makes a half-lunge towards Creighton, but a single eyebrow-crook from Louis stops her in her tracks. Creighton’s unwillingly impressed.
“I have perhaps not been entirely honest with you,” Creighton says, voice surprisingly steady. “I am not Louis’ pet, but neither do I wish to harm you.” A few vampires snicker at the idea. “I can’t say how I know, but the cops are looking into the CFO carnage.”
“We’ll kill the cops too! Male piggies are still men!” a vampiress with blonde dreadlocks and cut-glass triceps rises.
“A) you can’t kill the entire NYPD,” Creighton rolls her eyes. “B) this is the twenty-first century. There are women on the force now.”
“Like Olivia Benson,” the new-turned vampire offers dreamily.
“Look,” Creighton says, summoning all of the essays she’s read on hostage negotiation. “I understand why you feel like you want to avenge yourselves. If I had fabulous fangs like you do, I’d want to rip the jugular out of the douche who roofie’d me the other night. I just think there might be a better way to go about this.” The vampires look cautiously interested. Creighton tugs the neckline of her dress down a little bit, just in case.
“What?” Fiona’d definitely noticed the tug.
“You can hypnotize people, right?” She waits for a few nods. “And it eventually wears off?” More heads bob. “So tell them they desperately want to quit their jobs and go work at a non-profit. Hell, if they’re particularly vile, tell them to sell all of their assets and become a dishwasher at McMurdo Station in Antarctica.” The vampires, especially the newer ones, are starting to smile. “They value their status more than their lives - they’d probably like to think they went out at the hands of an insatiable orgy of beautiful women.”
“I can see your point,” Fiona purrs, coming over to stroke Creighton’s hair, “but what about the Gardaí?” Creighton’s eyes go heavy-lidded and she looks lazily up into Fiona’s blue gaze.
“All of the men here tonight, they’ve done terrible things to women?” Fiona nods. “You’ve still got one of ‘em alive, haven’t you?” She nods again. “Here’s how it’s going to work: you’ll convince him that he’s a closeted bisexual and has read Bret Easton Ellis novels one too many times - not too much of a stretch there, should be easy to implant - and he’s gone full American Psycho. But here’s the catch: tell him that he’s done it on other I-bankers. And now his investments are going to shit, the guilt is too much, and he has to go down to the precinct and confess.” Fiona draws back, draws lips over glistening teeth.
“I like it, lass.”
“Only one other thing-” Fiona’s eyes Doppler-shift away into red. “-tell him that he can only confess to Detective Macky Humboldt.” Fiona smiles.
“Is the detective your boyfriend? That’s sweet. Ah, but does Louis know?”
Creighton’s back in the guest bedroom, and back in Valenciennes lace.
“May I get you anything else? Warm milk? A glass of port? A nibble?” Louis looks earnestly concerned despite the double entendre, and she blushes despite herself, pulling the neckline snug.
“No,” cuddling against pillows.
“Do not quiet yourself around me, mon trésor. Do not look away. I know you had to pretended, earlier, when I… but it was necessary. I…”
“To pretend, I actually do the thing: I have therefore only pretended to pretend,” Creighton whispers, eyelids dragging down, fingers slackening at her collar. Louis knows this time that it’s Derrida, but does not speak, or challenge, only gently closes the door.