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It's dark and the roads are empty.

That's not surprising. The clouds that had gathered all day broke at sunset, and the road surface is covered in a sheet of moving water.  It's not the sort of weather anyone in their right might wants to go out in, for fun or profit. Burglars stay home. Muggers go to bed early.

More importantly, the petrol shortage doesn't seem to be letting up. The Mayor had promised more was on the way, but nothing has showed up. They haven't had access to fuel for over a week, and it's beginning to show. Not that it does anyone in town any harm to walk- but he knows that the ambulance and fire services are getting nervous. 

Despite that, James Norrington was expecting a relatively quiet night, aside from the rumble of thunder and the whine of bored colleagues.  But plans are always subject to change, and a call from one of the houses on the edge of town means braving the downpour. The message was garbled, panicked, something about intruders and although there's less information than he'd like, he can not ignore it.

The car stops, and the tall man steps out.  The place feels wrong, somehow. The light dancing in the wet tarmac is just from the streetlights, but it's on the wrong spot in the road.  The wind howls, but it sounds more like an animal than a storm. He resists the urge to shudder, and instead slams the car door behind him. He is not going to let a little bad weather and the strange heaviness in the air get the better of him. It's probably just some sort of change in pressure because of the rain.

Even so, he'd like to have Teddy Groves with him, but James would rather have his second-in-command back at HQ, with the only other car that still had fuel in the tank. Instead he has Hornblower- by all accounts capable, even if James knows next to nothing about him.  There is, at least, a reassuring weight of a gun at his hip, although against the rain and flickering lights it's more than useless. You can't fight shadows with bullets. 

Shadows aren't the problem, anyway. It's the house they've stopped outside, dark and quiet. There's not a light on, not even one in the porch. If it weren't for the street lights, James could have driven straight past the place. It's just another thing to add to the list of things that don't feel right. 

"We should get this over with." He says, the words meant for himself more than his colleague, and he squares his shoulders as he walks to the door, a hand reaching towards the holster at his hip. The place seems quiet, horribly still, and he doesn't want to take any chances. Not when, once they're at the front door, it's clearly swinging open on it's hinges. 

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commodore james norrington

August 2016

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