Blood Chapter 26

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Blood flowed from his arm… too much blood. He needed to stop it. He could stop it. Erkan did just that… but that didn’t solve the problem. He was basically just holding a hand on the wound- it wasn’t really stopped. Once his concentration lapsed, it would continue to bleed. He had to actually make it clot, like Nico had demonstrated. But for that… he had to let it flow. He just didn’t have the mental capacity to do both things at the same time. 

He avoided thinking about how much blood was getting out while he concentrated on clotting it. Erkan concentrated on remembering how it went with Nico, trying to replicate the process. There was just one problem. He was still missing the necessary clotting factors. Rather, some of them were very rare. While he could control the process, the necessary clotting factor. Since he had haemophilia he was missing factor IX. However, trying to single that out among all the other components of his blood was difficult. He already had plenty of everything else- and he did have some factor IX. All he had to do was speed up the flow of just that factor through his blood and keep it from moving past. Easy, right?

Somehow, he managed it. He knew it was his doing, since on its own the wound would have almost never stopped bleeding on its own. This way, it only took a few minutes… which was still a very long time to be bleeding. Even with additional factor IX from regular injections, he was still low.

Once he was sure the clot was strong enough to hold on its own, Erkan let out a slow breath. Then he looked down. “Holy cow that’s a lot of blood.” It had all gone into in one of the containers on the desk, but it coated the entire bottom. “How much is that?”

Nico shrugged, “Less than 50 ounces, I presume. I detect no loss in blood pressure or irregularity in your heartbeat.” Nico looked down at the blood carefully, “Hold that up and we can measure it.” Nico walked over to one of the shelves that had protractors and rulers- which made Erkan wonder why he hadn’t gotten to use those to draw circles. “Come on then, a nice sphere, if you can.”

Erkan was tired, but he could do that still. He had a lot of practice with spheres. It was just that they weren’t normally so large… but it wasn’t actually much more difficult than something smaller- and it was still easier than working on the microscopic scale. Nico tried to estimate the radius… then just stabbed the ruler through the center of the sphere until it came out the other side. “Ah, I see. Six inches.”

“That’s the… diameter?” Obviously it wasn’t the radius- the ball wasn’t a whole foot in each direction. It was still an awful lot of blood.

“Right. How do you feel?”

“Tired? New magic is hard.”

“Lightheaded?”

“From blood loss? Not really.”

“Then everything is fine. I would suggest not performing any more blood magic with your own blood for a while. Which means next we should-” Nico’s phone beeped. “Ah, that sounds like work.”

“Oh. Should I go?”

Nico held up a finger while he read the text. “You can… or you can come with me. Mortimer found Justin.”

“Who’s Mortimer?”

“Ah, he’s the one who initially… found… Justin. He’s a normal human.” Nico shrugged, “At least as much as anyone trained to hunt undead can be. Do you want to come?”

“Are you planning to arrest Justin?”

Nico shook his head, “I haven’t been ordered to or given a warrant, and I like Justin. That said, if not for some special circumstances he would have been quite over the line. But no, we’re just going to talk. It will probably take all day to get there and back.”

“I’ll go then.”

“Excellent. Oh, and we’ll be out of cell phone reception, so if you have any concerns there…”

“Right…” Erkan started tapping on his phone, “Battery… about… to… die… whoops!” Erkan shrugged, “There. Not that anyone should be calling, but maybe in the morning my parents or something.”

“Excellent. We’ll take my car.”

—–

When they arrived at city hall, Erkan was confused. Obviously it wasn’t the ‘real’ city hall. This was the supernatural one. “Is this place… out of cell phone range? Oh, do they block incoming signals?”

“Oh, I see.” Nico nodded, “I forgot to mention we’re going to the Shadowlands.”

“Ah… hmm. I see.” Erkan wasn’t sure what to say to that. Hearing about a mysterious other place was one thing, going there was something else. “So we have to stop by here to let them know?”

“This is how we get there. It’s one of the few official ways near here. This place is easiest because I’m an officer and… Mortimer works here. Speaking of which…” He waved. “Hey, over here!”

“Ah!” A thin man wearing glasses walked over. He smiled, “Nico! Good to see you. This is Erkan then?”

Erkan nodded, “You’re Mortimer?”

“That’s right.”

“I was expecting something… different… from an undead hunter.”

Mortimer smiled pleasantly, “Everyone does. Also, I prefer the term gravekeeper. I don’t kill everyone you know.” Mortimer was middle aged, thin, and while he seemed fit… he didn’t appear particularly strong. He also wore a backpack, which somewhat clashed with his otherwise professional attire.

“Ah, sorry.”

“Don’t worry about it. Anyway, I can afford to look like this because if I’m fighting undead up close, I’ve already lost. Normal people aren’t going to overpower anything stronger than a regular zombie. Now then, Justin got in contact with me. He and Rosa went into hiding after the attack. Fortunately he was willing to talk to me, but given the circumstances he still prefers to remain in hiding.” Mortimer looked to Nico, “However, he trusts you enough to see you.” Mortimer smiled at Erkan, “Meanwhile, he says you were his favorite human customer, and he would like to explain some things to you. Now then, I’ve already gotten us cleared to go through. Right this way.”

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