Vision in Silver Page 94

“Both BOWs are in the garage here,” Blair said. “We’ll toss everything into the back of them and sort it out later.” He strode to the garage that held the first BOW.

By the time Julia ran up to Howling Good Reads’ office and fetched the keys for the efficiency apartments, Nyx Sanguinati had joined them. The four females split up. Julia and Marie packed up Merri Lee’s possessions; Nyx checked the apartment that Lorne from the Three Ps and Montgomery’s team of police officers were using; and Tess took the apartment Montgomery and Lizzy occupied.

Alone, with the door locked so that no one would walk in on her, she allowed her true nature to show through the human mask. Meg had mentioned a mask when she spoke prophecy at the Pony Barn a couple of weeks ago. Happy mask, angry face. Could apply to a lot of humans right now, but her own interpretation was that the image stood for deceit.

Simon was walking into some kind of danger at the stall market. There were thieves coming to the efficiency apartments at the Courtyard. Two kinds of threat happening at the same time. Coincidence or intentional? Was one meant to be a deception that was supposed to pull their attention away from the other threat until it was too late?

Tess found two suitcases stored under the single bed. Hauling them out, she dropped them on the bed and began emptying drawers, pulling them out of the dresser and upending them over the suitcases, moving as quickly as she could.

But when something from Lizzy’s underwear drawer fell into the suitcase with a thud, Tess set aside the drawer to take a closer look.

Pink book with gold stars. A gold clasp and a tiny keyhole.

Tess shook out a few pieces of clothing, but she didn’t find the key that fit the lock. Didn’t matter. Meg had seen the book, not the key.

She set the book aside while she finished clearing out everything that belonged to Montgomery and Lizzy. Then she wrapped the book in a clean kitchen towel, hid her true nature enough that she wouldn’t endanger the other earth natives, and unlocked the door.

Nyx stood on the other side.

“Marie and Julia cleared out Merri Lee’s things,” Nyx said. “They’re driving that BOW to the Green Complex and will park it in the garages there. Blair is waiting to haul whatever you have up here down to the other BOW.”

A locked door would have meant nothing to a Sanguinati, and yet Nyx had waited outside. It was that respect for Tess’s need of a private moment that made her hand over the wrapped book.

“Keep this hidden from everyone until I ask for it,” Tess said.

Nyx took the book. “Is it dangerous?”

“I think so.” After all, secrets could be very dangerous.

Blair came around the corner. “You ready? Let’s get this stuff out of here so I can bring up the Wolves for defense.”

“You’re not going to defend the apartments,” Tess said, her hair turning solid red and coiling.

Blair took a step back and snarled. Nyx looked curious.

“We’re going to let the thieves break in,” she continued. “We’re going to let them start searching the apartments so that other humans will know they were enemies.”

“And then?” Blair asked.

“And then I’ll kill them.”

CHAPTER 47

Watersday, Maius 26

Simon glanced at the merchandise on another table, then looked away, uninterested.

Too many people, too much noise, too many things. Why did humans need so many things?

Nathan had stayed inside the big metal building that sheltered the stall market for a whole fifteen minutes before claiming that someone needed to guard the Courtyard’s small bus against vandals or thieves. Simon would have gladly joined him, but the leader needed to stay and keep an eye on the rest of the pack. Sure, Henry and Vlad were there to help keep an eye on Jenni, Starr, and Crystal. Kowalski, Debany, and MacDonald were there too, but they had their hands full—literally—with being two-legged packhorses for Ruthie and Merri Lee.

“I guess Crows and humans have something in common,” Kowalski said as he came up beside Simon. “They like filling their homes with trinkets.”

Simon studied Ruthie, who seemed to be cooing over some kind of jar. “You’re going to let your mate purchase a jar that looks like a sick cow?”

“What makes you think the cow looks sick?”

“Because I’ve never seen a healthy cow sit that way.” He wasn’t sure cows—or any other kind of four-legged prey—could sit that way. “What is she going to do with it?”

“Put it on the kitchen counter and use it as a cookie jar or something.”

“But you’ll have to look at it too.”

Kowalski shrugged. “She’s my mate. I can live with it if it makes her happy.”

Simon looked at the bulging carry sacks Kowalski had in each hand. “Couldn’t you just give her the best parts of a bunny?”

“Doesn’t mean the same thing to a human female.”

He sighed. He’d had a feeling that would be the answer.

“Jenni and her sisters are having fun,” Kowalski said. “They really like hunting for treasures.”

“Can they stop having fun soon?” A Wolf could travel a hundred miles in a day when he needed to. But after an hour of this noise and confusion—and all the stinky smells!—he was tired and wanted to go home and nap. And see Meg. He really wanted to see Meg. He wanted to play with Sam. He wanted . . .

He ignored Kowalski’s laughter since the human was laughing at him, and answered his mobile phone. “What?”

“Simon, get out of there now,” Elliot said.

“We’re almost—”

“Now! Meg had a vision, and what she saw about you being in the stall market scared her so much she fainted.”

Simon stiffened. He watched Kowalski study him, then set the carry sacks aside and motion to Michael Debany. “Meg cut herself?”

“She fell on the stairs leading up to the efficiency apartments. Something bad is going to happen up there too, but you—”

“Keep her safe.” He ended the call and looked around for the rest of the terra indigene. <We have to leave now.>

“Problem?” Debany asked, joining Simon and Kowalski.

“Danger,” Simon replied. “Meg says we have to get out of here.”

“Should we call Lieutenant Montgomery?” Debany asked Kowalski.

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