August rode his cycle to the front of the Bellagio. Sam stepped forward to meet him outside the front doors. "You made good time, August." He looked up and down the street. "You by yourself?"
"You see anyone else, Sam?" asked August. He stood relaxed, facing Sam, his hands at his sides. "I see you have company, though." He nodded at the three guards who stood near Sam.
Sam shrugged. "Expecting you. Been tracking your progress since you entered the city. Nice cycle by the way. What happened to the one we found?" Sam laughed shortly. "Oh, never mind. I forgot. It developed a mechanical problem a few hours from Fort Collins."
August's face clouded. "And you know that how?"
"Because I'm an excellent mechanic and know how to fix things - or break them." Sam grinned widely. "I needed you out of the way to set my plan in motion."
August's mouth set tightly. "Where is Maddie?"
"She's safe, August," Sam answered.
"I want to see her." August made a move forward and the three vampires next to Sam moved forward as well, fierce looks on their faces and clubs held loosely in their hands. August cast them a sharp look.
Sam sighed. "She is safe, August. I never wanted her. I wanted you, and now you're here." He looked at one of the men next to him. "Bill, please go tell Terry he can quit watching Maddie. She's free to go."
Bill nodded and moved down the sidewalk.
"There. You satisfied?" Sam asked. He moved forward and motioned for August to hold out his hands for the handcuffs.
"No, Sam, but I guess I don't have a lot of choice, do I?" The cuffs tightened around his wrists.
"No, you don't," Sam answered, his face darkening. "I have to take you to the Doctor. He wants you bad, August. He's been hunting you for years now."
The four of them headed through the lobby of the Bellagio, August looking out the glass doors as they moved inside. Even he didn't see the figure in the shadows. August smiled to himself.
"Maybe you shouldn't have left your two goons upstairs, Sam," August said as the elevator descended.
"I've always liked you, August. This isn't personal." Sam waved the barrel of his pistol. "Besides," he sighed, "that's why I have a gun." The elevator doors opened and August stepped into the barren hallway.
August looked at the doors along the hallway, an involuntary shudder shaking his wide shoulders. "I spent a lot of time in these rooms, Sam," he said. "This isn't a good place."
Sam shrugged, his pistol aimed at August's heart as they continued down the hallway. "Not my problem, August. I'm supposed to deliver you." He motioned toward the far door.
"You don't have to deliver me, Sam. He's a madman, you know."
"Yeah, yeah, everyone knows that." Sam shook his head. "I thought about not turning you in, but he must have guessed I'd betray him, so he took my girl. We talked about leaving." Sam's eyes watched August. "He must have our room bugged, and I should have guessed that. So I turn you in, she goes free." A low growl escaped Sam. "And we're out of Vegas forever."
"I understand, Sam. Good luck on that." August turned the doorknob at the end of the hall. "Yeah, I've been here before," he said. "I never got to open the door myself, though."
August walked in, towering over Gary, who wiped orange powder from his fingers. "This is the guy?" He stood up from the desk. "He's not as big as Lawrence, so I don't know what the fuss is all about." He opened the inside door to the laboratory. "You might as well go in, Sam. He knows you two are here and he's waiting."
"Good day or bad, Gary?" Sam paused before he stepped forward.
"It's a bad day, Sam." Gary lowered his voice. "They've been getting worse, honestly. I don't know how much longer..." Gary coughed. "Never mind." He smiled awkwardly at Sam. "Good luck."
Sam nodded as he pushed August through the doorway, but looked back at Gary before entering. "Too bad about your ice cream warehouse, Gary."
Gary's face grew pale. "What?"
Sam reached to close the door behind him. "Yeah, a couple of the guys mentioned it. They were planning some sort of party."
Sam chuckled as he closed the door on Gary's worried face.