“When the pictures are posted, Patrol Officer Smits will be celebrated a hero,” yet still, even as the mayor says those words, she knows they are mostly fantasy. The photographer wants too much, and when he gets tired of waiting, he’ll just release them for the clicks anyway. Patrol Officer Smits was no more hero then any other human would have been in his exact situation.
There is a murmur in the reporter pool as she turns and walks away. A man screams, “He stayed his ground!”
Someone screams back something about the evidence he tried to escape, and the mayor gives up listening as she reaches the open door of her waiting SUV.
She climbs in thinking about truth.
Yes, he didn’t abandon his partner, at first. That much the mayor knows is true, up until the very end, he was there by the patrol car. The dashboard-cam showed that easily enough. Some were so proud for that alone, they’ll likely name their children after the man. His wife is already on her way to becoming a local celebrity. She might even run for mayor herself, toting better security of the fey, as her platform.
The reality? It doesn’t matter. She wishes the pictures would just disappear, if not for the evidence she hopes to glean from them. She needs to find out the truth about what happened. Then they can let the man lie in peace, even though they never even found a single scrap of him. She fiddles with a bit of red-dyed hair that has fallen free from the severe bun at the back of her horned skull.
First things first though.
Outside, among the reporter pool, A fight breaks out between two men. They throw wild-haymakers at each other as the mayor closes her door and tells the driver, “To the armory,” because the threat is still out there, and soon she will lose all support unless she finds the beast responsible. Or her next election, she might as well not bother showing up at all.