Hilde and Sakura arrived at the flat of the fourth victim, Patricia Becker. It was abandoned but had clearly been kept in good order. The living area had a glass curio cabinet with porcelain dolls lined up neatly inside, a television lined up on a cabinet, some ostentatious abstract expressionist paintings and two recliners.
Hilde looked over everything carefully, not wanting to damage anything or leave signs of them having been there but also being thorough so as to not miss any potential clues. She found what she was looking for tucked underneath a doll designed to look like a traditional geisha. A card for VIP access to the Bombastic Berlin Party Room. Laminated with some bright stripes of blue & pink.
“Same as all the others,” Hilde muttered. “A hidden card for a seemingly ordinary night club.”
“So, we tell Thoril and bust them?” Sakura asked.
Hilde shook her head. “Right now we just have suspicions. Strong suspicions, I’ll grant, but suspicions nonetheless. We need to confirm them. I suggest you find something to protect your hearing. Tonight, we’re going clubbing.”
The Party Room was everything Hilde hated about clubs. Loud, flashy, full of drunken idiots thrusting at the air and pretending it was a dance. One thing she couldn’t see, strangely enough, was any sign of a VIP area.
After searching futilely for a time, she finally decided to ask the bar tender.
“VIP area?” he asked. “We don’t have anything like that. Why? You someone important?”
“Oh, no,” Hilde said, waving her hand. “A friend just gave me this,” she held out one of the VIP cards. “Thought I might take advantage of it.”
He looked it over, a perplexed expression on his face. “Your friend must be joshing you. I’ve never seen one of these before.”
“Well, thanks,” Hilde took it back. “Guess she thought it was funny. I’ll get her back later.”
She casually made her way back outside. Sakura peeked her head out of her purse. “What now?”
“It seems that, at the very least, the tender we talked to doesn’t know anything about it,” Hilde said. “There might be a specific person you’re supposed to talk to. Probably even a pass code. So, what we’re going to do is you’re going to use your invisibility glamour and you’re going to follow someone if you see them with a card. I’ll go back inside and try to stake out potential locations for this VIP room.”
“Leave it to me!” Sakura declared. “If I find out anything, I’ll let you know.”
“Just watch out for those Veritas guys,” Hilde said.
“I will,” Sakura promised. She flew off. Hilde went back inside.
The inside of the club was as stifling as before, but Hilde did her utmost to ignore the commotion. She moved around the area, seeing no signs of any hidden rooms. The club looked to be entirely normal.
After nearly an hour of fruitless wandering, Sakura returned.
“I’ve seen it!” she declared. Hilde looked around. None of the patrons showed any signs of seeing the fairy.
“Lead the way,” Hilde mouthed.
“It’s outside, I’ll show you,” Sakura said.
She led Hilde outside and away from the club proper. She had to duck into Hilde’s bag once, when they noticed the Veritas agents heading for the club. Hilde surmised that they’d found a clue leading here as well. To the left of the club, down an alley, was an old padlocked basement entrance.
“The guy slipped his VIP card through the middle of that door and it opened.” Sakura said.
“And then padlocked itself back up, I suppose,” Hilde said.
“Well, yes,” Sakura answered. “We both knew there was magic involved.”
“No helping it,” Hilde sighed. She slipped one of her cards in between the doors. The chains and padlock fell away. The entrance creaked open. Hilde grabbed her luger, nodded to Sakura and the pair descended into the foreboding VIP section.