Chapter 17:

Part2- Chapter 7

Snowflake and Butterknife

Met and Nova drove down the streets in Met’s car before finally spotting the 7th division's headquarters. It was built near the lakefront towards the northern section of Chicago, long past where the towers scrapped the sky. The buildings had turned into two and one story with the occasional three story for apartments.

The 7th division building was older than most. It had once been a police station, but was abandoned once a new one was built a few blocks away. The old brick building had sat empty for several years before the seventh division took over and cleaned it up. The building was only two stories with a red tiled roof, though Met noticed something strange as they got out of the car.

A wooden balcony was built on the second floor along the side of the building as if it was just glued into place. It stuck out like a sore thumb amongst the gray bricks that were worn by age, the wood wasn't even painted, just the standard color you would find in a hardware store. A small trail of smoke rose into the air from the balcony. They approached the single metal door that was their entrance and Met noticed a fire pit built with several folding chairs laying out with snow beginning to pile on them.

The seventh division was a tad larger then Reynard’s staff, though they didn't have the holding that Reynards had. The air felt processed and sanctuary in the waiting room. The room itself was more of a hallway with a glass window along one side, chairs along the other, and ending in a steel door.

“Hello there.” A woman said from behind the glass, she had her chestnut hair in a bun on the back of her head and had a very casual smile. “Can I help you two?”

Nova pulled out his badge for the woman to see. “I was hoping to talk to Turi, is he available?” Nova asked with a smile.

The woman looked over his badge. “He is upstairs, I'll ring you in.”

With that, the buzzer of the door sounded. Nova smiled and thanked the woman, then he and Met opened the door and entered. Reynard’s division were well known amongst the other Peacekeepers, so any sign of his badge should be enough to get them in without issue.

The stairs up to the second floor were next to the breakroom and were old concrete stairs with a plastic coating on top to make them seem nicer then they were. They clearly hadn't been replaced in years and had begun to wear out from constant use.

Once they reached the top of the stairs they found a large open room with many smaller offices and other rooms that Met could not tell the use of. The Peacekeepers on this floor all joked and worked. Several boards were set up on recent cases, most involving the ACO that were recently captured.

One of the Peacekeepers spotted Met and Nova and approached. He was younger, late twenties, and had those hopeful eyes.

“May I help you?” The officer asked.

“Is Turi up here?” Nova asked, looking around. He flashed his badge to the man who in turn looked it over.

“The boss is outside on the balcony.” The officer said, directing them to a door along the wall.

“Thank you.” Nova said, excusing him and Met as they walked.

The door in the wall clearly wasn't meant to be there, as the glass door seemed fresh and the frame did not match any of the other frames in the building, it was far too new. Met figured it used to be where a window was, but it was replaced with a double wide sliding glass door. Two figures were outside on the balcony, one was a brawny blonde man who faced away, wearing a thick jacket. The other was a taller guy with dark black hair and wore a slick jacket that stuck close to his fit body.

Nova slid the door, letting a gust of cold air into the office. The officers didn't even offer a look as papers near the door took off into the air. They stepped outside and sealed the door behind them. The two figures turned to face them, both with cigarettes in their hands.

“You call a priest?” The blonde one asked. He had a sharp jaw with five o clock shadow forming. His eyes were steady and confident with a deep blue.

“Nah, I ain't been sinning recently.” the black haired man said. He was a darker skin tone, most likely of middle eastern descent, with a soft chin and light brown eyes. “Maybe he is here to convert us.” He laughed, his voice was very jovial.

The blonde man did not join in the laugh, eyeing Nova. He took a deep inhale of his cigarette, the ash on the end growing several centimeters. He finally exhaled then knocked the ash off the side of the balcony.

“What does Rey want?” The blonde asked.

“Hello to you too Turi.” Nova said, coming to lean against the railing with the men. “Been a while.”

The blonde man held Nova’s eyes for a moment. “Yeah, how ya been Nov?”

“Seen better days.” Nova stated. “Lost a good man recently.”

“I heard.” The blonde man, Turi, answered. He took another puff of his cigarette. “They calling it the Devourer incident, you know?”

“I'd say it's pretty fitting.” Nova said, looking out at the town beyond.

“You two know each other?” Met asked, approaching the railing.

“We were in the same training regiment.” Nova stated. “Turi here was assigned a different squad after boot camp finished, but we spent a lot of time together.”

“You got put into Reynard’s squad.” Turi said, ashing his cigarette over the edge. “I was put over on Kelso’s, not sure which of us had it worse.”

“Id say us.” Nova said with a slight laugh. “I heard Kelso’s squad mostly sat around and drank.”

“For the most part.” Turi said, a smile cracking his lips. “We did do our fair share of work, our fair share of horrors.”

“Australia was a different place.” Nova stated.

“That it was.” Turi said, his eyes staring out on the town. It was clear he wasn't focused on the present, but instead somewhere far across the sea. “What you need with me?”

“You're working the Mageye Trafficking case right?” Nova said.

“I'm not giving it up to Reynard.” Turi said. “I've been working this case for months, something is going down and I aim to prove it.”

“We don't want to take it, we want to help.” Nova stated. “We might have a lead.”

Turi shot Nova a look. Nova in turn looked at the middle eastern man behind Turi.

“I trust Hamid with my life.” Turi said.

Nova nodded. “We think Jessie Kalahon is tied to the trafficking.”

“Is that so?” Turi said, pulling out a cigarette. He let it sit on his lips as he pulled a metal lighter from his jacket pocket and began to click the tinder to get a spark. “We have had similar thoughts but can't find anything concrete.” Finally, his light took and the cigarette began to burn.

“We may have the lead you're looking for.” Nova stated. “One of our guys met with his daughter and was attacked by his bodyguard. We think he may be trying to sell his daughter, Reynard and the rest of the gang are going to bring them in for questioning. You want in?”

Turi raised an eyebrow. “Nothing comes for free, what do you guys want?”

“We want to work together on this, to bring them in.” Nova explained. “If you work with us you don't have to worry about jurisdiction. We also think their next auction will be happening shortly, so think fast.”

Turi gave a chuckle. “Hamid, have our info sent over to the Closers then take care of things here for a while, I gotta take a trip to the city.”

“Will do Turi.” Hamid said, moving off.

Turi turned to face the glass door and peered at his officers. “You know, I have been in charge here for quite a while. Most of these people were forced into this position because of their ranking, or because Mageye struggled to find jobs. They are like my family.”

“Finally.” Nova said, looking at the officers. Met noticed something unspoken between the two, something he couldn't crack.

“I work to make this a home.” Turi said. “That’s why I put up this balcony.”

“You always were a handyman.” Nova laughed. “Your powers probably helped with that.”

“They said I couldn't drill into the brick, hell they were not happy I broke down that wall.” Turi said with a small smirk of satisfaction. “Can't be mad if I just stick it on there.”

“Good way to get around the system.” Nova said. “Sure the city loves it though.”

“They got over it, a lot of the people around here have started to like us.” Turi explained. “Cops are corrupt, so they don't investigate small things. We aren't like that, we do whatever we can to help the people in this community.”

Nova nodded. “I'm happy for you.”

Turi flicked his stub of a cigarette out into the parking lot. “Let's go get some sick freaks.”

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