The world is a far more complicated and terrifying place than anyone realizes.  Oh, we’ll joke about monsters under the bed, but we don’t really think that they’re real

Not really…

But there are good reasons for us to have that instinctive fear when we’re walking alone down empty streets at night.  Even the strongest man knows—in his heart, he knows—that there are predators out there that can leap at him from any direction, in any shape or size.

We pretend that we’re not afraid of the dark, but we know that for all of the messed-up, broken-down, wrong-headed stuff there is in this world, there are also some things in this world that are purely evil.

“Evil is, by definition, selfish.  It is not at its core sexually enticing, or exciting, or empowering.  At its core, evil simply wants its own way, its own passions, its own pleasures, its own pride, and it will approximate sensuality, or excitement, or empowerment in order to achieve its own satisfaction.”The Knight of Cups - Chapter 6

Chicago Police Detective Tom Chapel has spent his career investigating the darker sides of the Windy City.  He’s seen it all, from muggers to drug dealers to gang wars.  At least he’s always thought that he’s seen it all.  But with the murder of Hector Flórez, Chapel’s mundane understanding of this world begins to unravel, and he is introduced to a very different sort of reality.

Increasingly, Chapel finds out that legends that he’d always seen as fables are, in fact, historical facts.  Monsters that he’d always thought of as myths are stalking human prey from the alleyways of modern cities.  And—perhaps even more terrifying than that—he finds that there are things things hunting in the night that even the monsters fear…

“A vampire is a corpse, animated by the infestation of a demon, whereas the werewolves see themselves as the very pinnacle of life and virility.  To the werewolf, the vampire is a grave-haunting parasite—while to the vampire, the werewolf is a lolloping beast…”The Queen of Pentacles - Chapter 8

Chapel’s investigation has stumbled upon The Danse—a centuries-old pact between the various creatures of the night.  In times past, dark things had hunted us openly, but not today.  Now, they’ve found that their best camouflage is humanity’s presumption of such creatures being nothing more than myths to scare children.  As Baudelaire once wrote, “la plus belle des ruses du Diable est de vous persuader qu’il n’existe pas” (“The greatest trick of the Devil is to persuade you that he doesn’t exist”).

So what happens when someone figures out that the bogeyman is real…?

Check out the series here, and come join The Danse…

“I watched in horror as one leering, drooling thing that used to be human reached out for Joanna’s neck and grabbed at her.  There was nothing that I could do to stop it.  She screamed, and I saw the horror flash across her face as she suddenly realized what was happening…”The Knight of Cups - Chapter 12