Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Assassin's Retirement Chapter 14, Part 2 #gentleman #amwriting #blogstory

Welcome back to Assassin's Retirement. 

If you have stumbled onto this blog story and want to start from the beginning, I have added a Table of Contents at the bottom of this page with links to the other chapters in the story.

He wanted to walk away...

Fate wouldn't let him.

Copyright Lexi Ander

Zane sat down in the chair nearest the fireplace. All the furniture looked as if it had been fashioned from drift wood, but Zane's chair also had antler in the construction. With Alonzo standing at Zane's back, the tableau reminded Cord of the Scandinavian mead halls of days gone by. Zane looked very much the part of a ruler surveying his petitioners… which was exactly what Cord and his guys were. His family had come seeking Zane's help.

"Have a seat. Get comfortable." Zane gestured to the seating arrangement around the fireplace.

Cord didn't hesitate to take the the end of the couch closest to Zane, ignoring the glare from Alonzo. Midnight sat next to Cord. Unsurprisingly, Xander and Prince sat on the sofa across from Cord. Raine kept the one loveseat to himself, glaring at Anson when it appeared Anson would sit with him. Catching Anson's attention, Midnight patted the cushion next to him. He threw his arm around Anson, shooting Raine a glare. They were used to how rude Raine could be, but if Raine wasn't careful, Cord would take him outside and wipe the ground with him.

Since Cord was the one who brought them this far, he felt compelled to break the ice. "We are sorry the Chupacabras has caused you problems." His worry skyrocketed when Zane's blank expression never changed, his eyes remaining flat, conveying nothing. "Prince planned to follow them back to their—" Cord blinked, searching for a word other than lair.

"We had hoped," Prince cut in. "That they would lead us back to where they are staying, and hopefully, to either the shooter or clues to who the shooter is."

Zane twirled a bone dart in his fingers and still he said nothing.

Cord squirmed under that steely stare as if he'd been caught by his mother for not being forthright. He was amazed by the feat. He'd face many different beings on several continents. Up until then he'd believed only Valkyries had fear-inspiring gazes that could make him quake inside.

Raine shifted, bringing all attention to him. Cord barely controlled his groan. He could almost hear what Raine would say before he even opened his mouth. "We were told by Elle you were unaware of us, of others who are not human." Raine's gaze flicked to Alonzo. "So, unless Elle was wrong or between the time you left our place and the time we arrived, you got a quick course."

Zane cocked his head, but his expression unreadable. "Why would you think that?" Flint entered Zane's voice. "Elle could have been wrong."

Raine snorted and waved a hand at Alonzo. "The dude goes all gigantor and you didn't bat an eye. And oracles, their sight is always true. You can bank on that."

"Perhaps I wasn't surprised because I fought el Chupacabra behind your house. Maybe it was the fact that two el Chupacabra corpses back to life when I could have sworn they were dead. Or perhaps Prince tromping around the forest with only a sword when the person he was after had a gun tuned me in to these so-called others. And then there are the bone darts…" Zane flipped one into the air and caught it.

"Stop blowing hot air up my ass. I—"

Zane leaned forward, a gun—holy shit, where did that come from—suddenly in his hand, his gaze promising death. The air in the room thickened and all the hair on Cord's body stood on end. When Zane finally spoke, it was with an eerie calm that made Cord want to flee.

"Blowing hot air, am I? I was not the one who invited a stranger into my home under false pretenses. Then was attacked, resulting in my guest going out into the dead of night to have their first encounter with something wholly not human. I did not refuse to give answers when asked. That was what you did. You didn't explain the dangers, what you were involved with, or your plans. When I left your house, I picked up what I thought were dead bodies, not wanting any of the locals to stumble across the strange creatures and bring in authorities from across the country. My intention was to bury them, not knowing they were in some kind of hibernation or healing cycle. People under my protection were threatened because I didn't realize I'd brought danger onto my land. This place is my home, my sanctuary, and tonight its safety was broken. So do not presume to lecture me. I asked you for answers, but you couldn't be bother with telling me the truth."

Raine's mouth snapped shut. He seemed to understand he had gotten them—

Zane flicked the note to Cord. "And now there is an assassin in my territory. Not only did you bring them here, you seem to know who I am—or who I used to be before I retired. Who else knows?"

Cord closed his eyes when Raine snorted. "You don't even know who or what we are—"

"Shut up, man!" Anson snapped, the warning clear in his dark gaze. Anson would make Raine regret it if he didn't hold his tongue.

Of course, Raine ignored him. Cord was sure they were going to die by the hand of the person they needed to save them.

"You think you're good enough to shoot all six of us before we get our hands on you?" Raine's tone was goading and sarcastic.

"Assassin," Midnight singsonged.

"He wouldn't just shoot you," came a voice form the kitchen. Everyone jumped except Alonzo and Zane.

The newcomer leaned against the wall that separated the kitchen from the rest of the great room. Broad cheekbones, a square jaw, and a high brow made for a formidable countenance. His glacial stare easily pinned Cord in place. It was like looking to the eyes of a stone-cold killer and if Cord breathed wrong, this person would pounce, killing Cord before he could even move.

"Zane could easy kill all of you without breaking a sweat." The man pointed at Raine. "I would encourage him to put a plug in you just to shut your arrogant mouth. Scared children shouldn't be allowed in adult conversations." Cord heard Raine swallow. "And if—that's a big if—he missed one of your sorry asses, I'd shoot you for him."

Cord remained still, not wanting to draw the man's attention. How had he not known there was another person in Zane's house. Had he been there all along or was everyone so focused on Zane that none of them heard him come in? Zane hadn't startled but then again, Zane always seemed unflappable.

"Hey, Scyld," Zane said with genuine warmth in his voice. "You got here quicker than I thought you would." Zane leaned back in his chair, looking for all the world as if he was relaxing and not pointing a gun at Cord.

"I did get here a bit earlier." He glanced at Alonzo with a twinkle in those frosty eyes. "You were occupied and then these idiots arrived." Prince stiffened at the implied insult. Cord wanted to bang his head on the wall. He loved his relationship with his guys but there were times he wanted to smother their egos with a pillow.

Table of Contents
Chapter Six, Part 1 - Harbinger of a Nightmare
Chapter Seven, Part 1 - Stolen Answers


  1. In my head I had "dun dun duuuuuunnnn" playing. This blog story is so addictive, Lexi!

    1. LOL! I'm so glad you're enjoying the story! It's been quite fun to write.

    2. And the next chapter is up today... :)

    3. Oh you beautiful beautiful person!! Scrambling off to read it!