Goats and Chickens
Danny self-consciously put the New Testament aside. "It's okay. I was just looking up something the old minister gave me."
"Yeah? You gonna fight these Satanists with the Bible?" Kono asked.
"What have you got?" he asked to change the subject.
"Reports on that blood on the barn walls."
"Bunch of stuff. Some animal blood -- goat, horse. But one area is human blood. Lots of it. I checked it against the blood type of that missing boy. Matches."
"Are you sure?"
"Yeah. Right here." He held out the paper.
Danny shook his head. "Finger prints?"
"Blanks -- all of them."
"How's that possible? Anyone who drives a car is registered."
Kono shrugged. "Not one print match in the lot."
Danny sighed. "Okay, then. You know what's next. Get an HPD dog team out to that farm and start looking."
Kono nodded dejectedly.
There was a light rap on Ronny's bedroom door. She left her journal she was writing in to answer.
"Ronny, I need your help," her older sister, Connie, whispered, quickly slipping into the room and closing the door behind her. She made a grimace she attempted to hide as another pain crept across her swollen abdomen. The contraction lasted about thirty seconds.
Ronny's eyes widened. "The baby? Is it time? I'll get Fahn."
Connie caught Ronny's arm as she started through the door. "No. Listen to me. I don't want Fahn."
Connie brought her sweating face close. "I want to save my baby."
"But, Connie -- I don't understand."
"Euronius wants to kill my baby," Connie whispered.
"No, it's just part of the emas," Ronny answered.
"I know -- you don't. This is your first," Connie paused to breathe through another pain. "There was another planned -- it did not work out -- the sacrifice must be made." Tears were gathering in her eyes. "I need to save my baby."
Ronny licked her lips. "Connie, I don't understand."
"You know yourself mother cannot keep bleeding herself -- Euronius wants another. He wants the baby. I have to get out of here. I need your help."
"Me?" Ronny replied in near panic. "What can I do?"
"Help me. Stay with me. I need to get away when the baby is born."
"Where will we go?"
"Come with me!" She pleaded.
Ronny gave a half nod fearfully. "But I don't know what to do."
"We have to leave now," Connie insisted.
"You ever seen anything like this?" Uri muttered to Kono as they watched.
He shook his head. "Spooky to me."
Nearby two HPD officers were struggling to control their hounds who were jumping and howling against their leashes. The officers kept calling commands to the animals which went completely unheeded as the dogs yelped and jumped around. As the minutes went by, the officers' frustration mounted.
"I thought those dogs were trained," Kono finally commented.
"There must be something here," one officer replied. "Never seem him act like this. Met with a skunk once and he didn't do this. Whatever it is, they are really agitated."
The second officer was still trying to get his dog to obey and dragged him by the leash towards the barn. The closer they got, the worse the animal became until it finally bared its teeth and with brute force pulled free from the officer. It ran back to the car and jumped into the back, cowered under the backseat. "Maybe some kind of radiation or something."
"I tell you it hana mana!" announced Pahuana as he approached them. "Come see, my chickens don't lay no eggs, two calves die."
Uri uttered: "Dammit."
"According to him, we already are," Kono replied.
Uri picked up the radio transmitter in the car. "This is Motsey, patch me through to Williams at Five-O."
McGarrett slowly climbed the steps to Five-0. I never get tired of coming here. This is my reason for living. Is that a shame? I've never had a wife, never fathered a child. And when I am gone, will there be anything to leave behind that has made the world a better place that I was here? We've done a lot of good out of this office. Put a lot of bad people away. Will it matter in the end?
He reached the top of the steps, squared his shoulders and stepped into the world that he had known for over thirty years. Ginny smiled and waved him on to Danny's office. "Here's what I gathered from the library," Steve offered as he lay down a stack of Xeroxed pages. "This Satan worship is pretty sophisticated. Has feast days, holy days -- if you want to call them that, the whole thing. Even a hierarchy of priesthood."
Danny sighed. "This thing is going nuts. I've got six officers doing the job of a body search up at Pahuana farm because the dogs went ballistic. We went through fifty men before we could get the ones we've got. Everybody's running scared. Rev. Goethals gave me this." He pointed to a page in the New Testament.
Mildly curious about Danny waving a Bible around, Steve read the passage underlined aloud. "'For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rules of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.' You're letting this rattle you."
"Rattle me! Of course it rattles me! There are things happening here I don't understand and can't explain," he retorted.
McGarrett was quiet a moment, not wanting to foster an argument. "Danny, the supernatural is largely made up by playing on people's fears and things they don't understand. The whole church routine is to provide an answer for the fear of dying."
Danny glanced at his former superior and closest friend. "What else is there to give an answer for dying?"
"Does there have to be one?"
Danny was suddenly overwhelmed by grief. It took a few moments before he could speak. "Coming from you that seems a little brash."
"Why? Because I am dying?"
"Stop it, Steve! Of course because you're dying!" He looked up, pain in his expression. "It sounds so selfish, but -- I don't want to do this again. I can't go through this again."
Steve gave a slow deep sigh. "We all die, Danny. No one escapes. It is a part of living. All there is is to live life well, do the best you can to leave it a better place."
"Why?" He spread his arms uselessly. "Why, Steve? If there isn't anything after this, why try?"
"You're responsible for two children. You tell me why," Steve commented.
"But what if there really is something more?"
Heaven? Hell? Nirvana -- I don't know…." He paced the room. "What if it really exists? What if these demons are real?"
Steve tried to lighten the mood. "Now you really are scaring me, Danno. This is superstition. It is all just fairy tales -- remember that. There is an eclipse of the sun and the ancient man needed to come up with a reason -- so he invented gods and demons. The gods protect, defend -- the demons are the evil of this life. We cannot have the demons without the gods to save us and visa versa." He paused. "And we know evil is real -- so that makes demons are real. There is some sense to it all, Danno -- it's just that the logic there doesn't add up -- it only seems to. Those who believe in the religious supernatural want to believe so they don't have to take responsibility for themselves. They can shove it off on some invisible demon."
Danny sat in silence.
"Okay," Steve said with a nod. Good, that will get him back on track. No more of this imaginary stuff, let's deal with the reality we know. "Let's take this thing apart in light of the cold facts. Let's look at what we can understand." He sat down by the desk and began to explain his research. "The Satanist groups are called covens. There are usually 13 members of a coven. They meet weekly, usually on Friday nights for what they call esbat. They have bigger meetings, called sabbats on important dates. These are February 2nd--called Candlemas, April 30--Roodmas, August 1--Lammas, and October 31--All Hallow E'en."
"Great," Danny muttered. "Halloween is in here, too."
"There's no getting away from the importance of blood sacrifice. They usually pretend to sacrifice a person by killing an animal and dripping its blood over the person, but there had been exceptions."
"February second," Danny said quietly. "The day after that boy disappeared. So there is a possibility -----"
McGarrett nodded quietly. "Perhaps you could get more from his mother than Uri did. And another thing: April 30th is Friday -- and LaFebre's wife delivered this morning. If someone really is after her child you may want some kind of security over there."
He waited outside the tenement walkup and few moments, trying to muster up the energy. He couldn't quite understand why he did not want to do this. He forced himself up the flight of wooden steps, and it took all his energy to knock at the door. He noticed the clove of garlic dangling from the doorpost overhead.
The small Chinese woman opened the door just a crack. "Yes?"
"Williams, Five-O," he tried to sound gentle. "May we talk?"
"I talked to the other man," she said in a soft, fearful voice, and started to shut the crack.
He placed a hand against the door. "I have a few more questions. Please, Mrs. Yakamura, I'm trying to find out what happened to Chuck."
"I already know," she whispered. "They all think I'm a crazy old woman." She started to close the door again.
This time he got his hand into it to stop her. "I don't. Please. Don't you at least want to find his body?"
Her eyes met his. "Then you believe he is dead, too?" she whispered.
She opened the door long enough for him to slip inside, then shut it quickly. "I do not even go outside. It is too dangerous for me."
"Your son vanished February first, correct?"
"They say he ran away. I know that is not true. He was a good boy, even when his father beat him."
"Will you tell me what you know?"
She wrung her hands. "They try to curse me. It is not safe for me to talk to you. I tell the other officer. They will hurt me."
"We'll protect you," He promised, knowing it was an empty hope.
She gave a grimace. "There is no safety."
He adopted a concerned and kind expression. "We will get you to a safe place -- a church? There is an abbey on Maui. Can I take you there?"
She looked him in the eye critically. "You believe they are real then?"
He hesitated. Do I? The point is she does. "I believe this cult of people exists," he replied carefully.
She looked disappointed. "They are just what we see. They are not the power." She fidgeted with a cross hanging from her necklace.
"Mrs, Yakamura, let me help, please," he said gently. "You can't stay locked up in this apartment forever. I will get you to Maui -- I promise. We can talk to Father Donnelly."
Still frowning, but yielding, she motioned him to a sorry, sagging couch and they both sat down. "It started because Chuck's father kill himself."
Danny blinked. That was new already. "Your husband is dead?"
She nodded. "He killed himself with drugs New Year's Day. Chuck take it very hard. He seeing a girl who was very kind to him. They talked a lot."
"I do not know. But after he was gone, his friends say they were trying to call back his father's dead spirit. This girl, they say, she knows how."
"Who were his friends?"
"They won't talk to you," she said. "They afraid too. This girl, she is still in school I think."
"Was her name was Moony?" Danny asked.
"I tell your man that. I think so. Connie Moony I think."
"You ever meet her?"
"No, but I see her once. Pretty girl. Polynesian. Teenager."
He made a note to check the high schools. "What did they do?"
She shook her head. "I don't know. Lots of candles and a ouiji board, I think."
"Isn't that just a game?" he asked.
Mrs. Yakamura looked wounded. "I used to think so, too. He spend more and more time with her. His friend, Toby, say she steal his soul."
"How did she do that?"
"I don't know. Toby say Connie steal his soul to save her baby."
That was the second reference this week to protecting an infant. And Danny recalled Goethals telling him about infant sacrifices. "Where can I find Toby?" he asked.
"He lives two streets over," she answered.
"Mrs. Yakamura, do you know any more about this Connie person? Do you know where she lives? She could probably help us track where Chuck really is," he suggested gently.
Her hands shook. "I did not want to know. She has the evil eye. She's a witch. She'll cast a curse on you."
"We'll see to it she doesn't come near you," he promised. "I can take care of myself," he assured her, hoping it was true.
Connie had somehow managed to drive between the pains. She and Ronny had gone out into an old cane field where no one could find them or hear them and Connie now lay on an old blanket using an old rag from the back of the trunk to bite down on as the fierce contractions came stronger and closer together.
Ronny knelt close by, terrified. "Please, Connie," she begged repeatedly, "please, let's go back, let's get help."
"No," she gasped, sweat glistening on her skin, "no, you know what will happen." Another pain started and she cried out, gripping her enlarged abdomen.
Ronny glanced around in the semi-light of the evening. "Connie, are you okay?" The dim beam from the flashlight seemed very insufficient as did the small pair of scissors Connie had placed on the blanket with some string. "Aren't we supposed to boil water or something?"
As the contraction passed, Connie took a deep breath. "It's coming," she whispered. "I can feel it." She gave another gasp. "I need your help!"
"Connie, please, please, let me get help!"
She grabbed hold of her sister's shirt. "Be here. Just be here."
"Connie, I'm scared. I think you're dying!"
Connie could not respond as a contraction came and with it and irresistible urge to push. She writhed, drawing her legs up. "It's coming! Ronny, it's coming!"
Ronny could do nothing but kneel next to her sister, frozen in terror. She did not know what to do, what to expect, only that they were both going to face a horrific punishment.
The contraction past, Connie relaxed on the blanket once again. "I've got to save my baby," she whispered.
"I don't understand," Ronny sobbed "This is what it is for! How can you just stop -- you can't. Fahn will kill you!"
"She won't find me," Connie gasped, shivering. "We'll run."
Ronny started crying in fear. "Connie, please, let's go back!"
Another contraction began and Connie cried out as she could feel her bones spreading and the all consuming urge to push. Something was happening. she could feel movement. "It's coming!" and this time, it really was. "Ronny! The baby!"
In shock, Ronny helped support the wet blood covered, slippery infant as it passed into the world, kicking and wiggling. In just a moment there was a new sound--a loud piercing newborn's cry. "A girl! A girl!" Ronny shouted through her tears as she wrapped the infant in a towel.
"Use the string to tie the cord," Connie panted, completely exhausted and shaking uncontrollably.
Ronny used the two pieces of string to tie off the cord, then as Connie instructed, cut between the two with the small pair of scissors. "Are you sure this is right?"
Connie nodded through her weariness. "I've seen this done. It's okay."
The baby began to cry again and Ronny placed her into Connie's arms. "What are we going to do, Connie?" she whispered.
"You need to drive us to the marina. I'll find someone to get all three of us off the island in a few hours."
"I've never driven a car!" Ronny said in shock.
"Ronny, you have to do this!"
"Look at her!" Connie ordered. "Look at my baby! I told you what they will do. They will kill her! Do you want to watch that!"
Ronny looked at the little child, cuddled in the dirty towel and watched as she opened her tiny eyes, smacked her little lips, yawned once, and wrapped the delicate fingers around her mother's finger. A new tear slipped from Ronny's eye. "No, no I can't."
Within the hour, Ronny was carefully driving Connie's small car down the highway, back towards town, peering in great fear at the road ahead. Everything ahead was full of terror. Trying to drive without experience, helping Connie and her baby escape sure death, and the future she faced when her part became known.
Connie found a couple at the marina who had a boat and gave them what looked like a large sum of money. Ronny, standing to the side wondered where it had come from. There was a brief argument and Connie made her way back to Ronny. "They won't take us all."
"What?" Ronnie whispered.
"They want more money. They will take the baby and me. Do you have any money?"
Ronny spread her hands helplessly. "What should I do?"
"If you find a replacement, Fahn won't be as angry."
"Replacement?" Ronny whispered.
"I have done it before. A substitute. Remember Chuck?"
Ronny stared at her. "Oh, Connie, I can't do that!"
"You will," she said fiercely, "it's the only way. I did it. You can, too. You must or they will take you."
Ronny began to whimper. "Connie, take me with you!"
"I can't," Connie answered, her sorrow for her sister plain. She glanced at the couple who were guaranteeing her passage. Their looks were cold. They would not be softened by tears. "Ronny, you must go back. It will be all right for you if you can get your friend to take the baby's place."
Ronny staggered back towards the small car. Driving with little training no longer seemed like her biggest problem. What will I do?
Ronny recoiled in terror for the fury on Fahn's face. "Where is your sister!" the woman demanded again.
"She's not here," Ronny sobbed again, covering her face with her hands.
"I know that already! Where is she! I know you know!" Agnes took Ronny by the arms and shook her.
"I don't know! I don't know!" Ronny screamed.
"Where did you both go last night! I know you left together. Connie's car is back but she is gone!"
Ronny was crying openly in terror. "She's run away!" she sobbed. "She had her baby -- a girl. She didn't want to give her up!"
"She what!" Fahn clenched her fists.
"She changed her mind!"
"It's too late for that," Fahn snarled. "You helped her. You must have. You knew she was going to do this and you didn't tell me!"
"I-I didn't know right away," Ronny pleaded.
Fahn struck her hard across the face. "You betrayed us as surely as Connie has."
"But I didn't!"
"And after you had just achieved so much." Fahn glared down at her for a few moments. "Very well. You know the price."
"No!" she begged. "You can't!"
"I have no choice and neither do you. The spirits demand payment. Would you have your dear mother be brought low?"
"No, no, of course not," she sobbed. "Oh, please, Fahn, isn't there something else""
Fahn, pleased to have Ronny's total dependence on her looked down at her again. "We shall see, child." A chilly smile crossed her face. "You are becoming a young woman -- maybe Euronius will accept that."