Petals of the Rose
The Pale Cab Driver
They come out of the closet into the Shelter’s ground floor. The door is marked with the words “West Hills Road. Enter at your own risk.” Tired and creeped out, Jacob leaves on his own. The others call a cab to take them back to get Waconda and Dim’s cars.
When the cab comes, Dim takes a seat up front and tries to make conversation with the pale, disinterested cabbie. He gives up and figures the guy’s been driving the night shift too long. Shika takes a dislike to the man, and on an intuition she Kens out that there is something not right about him. She smells blood on him, and his neck fails to throb slightly with a pulse. The changeling community knows that there are vampires in the city, but she didn’t think she’d meet one driving a cab.
They exit the cab and pay the man. When he leaves, Shika tells the others what she saw. They marvel for a moment, then get their respective cars. Waconda takes Shika home and tries to take her straight to her doorstep, but she is defensive and insists that he drop her at a corner in her neighborhood. When he tries to follow her to her doorstep anyway, she ducks down an alley to avoid letting him see where she lives.