Recap: In Chapter Six, Adam wraps up his mission and seeks out Demonica. The undeniable attraction between them is acknowledged and accepted.
Adam ran the distance to the pickup spot, not noticing the familiar sights around him. Blake waited with the chopper and he hopped in. This was going to be the fastest debriefing he’d ever gone through and hell would be paid to anyone who slowed him down.
“You’re late,” the pilot barked a sharp reprimand.
Adam answered coolly, “Simmer. I thought I was being followed so I doubled around a few times.”
Blake laughed. “I call bullshit.”
He whipped off his shades and stared into his friend’s eyes. He knew they could both see perfectly well in the dark interior. “Try me,” he growled, his eyes never wavering from the perfect animalistic pupil revealing the killer instinct behind them.
After a minute Blake calmed down and chuckled. “So the mission was successful?”
“Damn it Remy, you ask me that every fucking time this chopper picks me up. Has it ever picked me up if I failed?”
“Once...” Blake looked back at him.
Adam leaned back in his seat and smiled. “That does not count.”
Their banter continued until they reached Command. Then they were fully professional, back to the killers they were created to be. Both also aware they were surrounded by enemies in their own headquarters, nothing could slip.
He jumped out before the chopper landed at base. First up, walking in to record his mission. He didn’t have to hide anything on this one. He’d followed his instructions to the letter. They might be pissed the only evidence he had was the recording from his scope, but tough shit. The guy practically had an army guarding him and Adam wouldn’t have risked wandering into the middle of that for anything.
His weapons were checked and he made it through his physical in short time. He walked back out as Blake finished refuelling his black beauty. Adam climbed in and waited, checking his phone for any messages.
Blake climbed in and took his seat, sweet talking his chopper before turning to his passenger. “That’s the fastest debriefing you’ve ever delivered. What’s up?”
He closed off the growl by biting his lip. “I’m tired. I just spent weeks chasing a bastard all over the world. I barely had time to shower, let alone relax.”
“So I take it you want a ride home?”
He smiled and nodded. “Make it fast. I want to catch the morning news.”
Blake dropped him on the roof, as usual, and Adam ran for it the minute his feet were on solid ground. He hadn’t been home two hours before the orders for another mission came through and that had been a week ago.
He’d sent Danny a quick message to inquire about Monica and the reply worried him. She’d been to the pub every night for the first few days and then stopped coming in.
Adam ran the five blocks to Monica’s house. He stopped outside her gate and quickly scanned the yard to make sure the hounds weren’t on the loose before vaulting over and sprinting to the door.
“Monica?” he called out. “It’s Adam. You home?”
His heart pounded in his chest as the seconds ticked painfully by. The sound of light footsteps preceded the door opening and he grinned as she blinked up at him sleepily.
“Adam?” she squinted and pushed a clump of curls from her face.
Hauling her into his arms, Adam kissed her senseless. The warm, sweet smell of her enveloped him with a sense of home and he pulled from the kiss with a moan.
“Thank, God. Are you okay? Danny said you haven’t been to the pub in a couple of days.”
“I’m fine,” she yawned against the back of her hand. “I’ve just been working like crazy to get my summer line out. Come inside, please?”
He frowned and followed her in. “Summer line?”
Monica nodded, “Demonica Lingerie. Ever heard of it?”
“Lingerie?” he grinned and watched the sway of her ass while she walked. Figured. A woman who oozed sex the way she did wouldn’t have an ordinary job like secretary or accountant. Nope, he’d found himself a lingerie designer and if memory served – the lacy stuff her company sold ran toward the expensive.
“Yes,” she yawned again. “Come cuddle with me? It’s too early for decent people to be awake.”
“I thought you’d never ask,” he chuckled. “I’m gonna kill Danny later. Well, maybe maim him. His mistake did buy me some cuddle time with you.”
They reached her bedroom door and he scooped her into his arms. He opened the door and carried her in, closing it with a slight kick. “Bed time, sugar.”
He set her down on the edge of the bed. “Do you have a preferred side?”
“No,” she fidgeted with a curl. “But, I usually sleep naked. There’s nothing but me under the wrap I’ve got on. I can wear something if it would make you feel more comfortable?”
Adam tugged off his shirt and laid it on the end of the bed. “Considering I’m about twenty degrees warmer than the average man, you should probably just sleep naked but I’d hate to have you uncomfortable.” He stretched out on the bed and held his arms open for her, “Come here, Monica. Let me show you how a real man takes care of a woman.”
She plucked his shirt up and slid it over her head before dropping the thin silk on the floor.
He smiled at the sight of her in his shirt as she crawled up and stretched out against him. His clothes covering her skin seemed perfect somehow.
“You smell amazing,” she purred. “Like home.”
“I know the feeling,” he chuckled. His hands traveled lightly over her back in soothing circles. “Sleep well, baby.”
“Thank you,” she covered a yawn and snuggled closer. One of her arms slid over his chest and he stifled a groan at the delicious feel of her skin on him. “For coming over, and staying. I’m glad you’re here. I haven’t had a good night’s sleep since you left.”
“Anytime,” he whispered against the top of her head. Secretly, he wondered if the unrest Danny had sensed on her last visit to the pub related to her lack of sleep. Of course, not knowing Monica well, he’d misinterpret the signs. “Shush, sleep. I’m here and this is perfect.”
Happy for the first time in ages, Adam smiled as she relaxed and her breathing evened out. His body and senses took in his surroundings with practiced skill. Once he felt everything was safe and secure, Adam willed the lock to turn on Monica’s bedroom door and drifted to sleep.
A cold muzzle pressed into Demo’s outstretched hand and her eyes fluttered open to the sight of Sheoul snuffling her fingers. Smiling, she scratched her pets and stretched luxuriantly.
“Good morning, boys.”
Sheoul’s soft growl and yip fully woke her up and she spotted the note on the pillow beside her. A rose lay tucked between the folded paper and she brought it to her nose while she read. Sorry I had to run to check in with command and didn't want to do it from here. I'll be back later. Until then, sleep well and keep the shirt. It looks way better on you. Adam
“Adam,” she sighed. Tartarus whimpered softly at the word lovingly whispered by his mistress and she reached out to pet the hound’s head. “I know, but he’ll be back. You boys want another treat before you go outside?”
Both hounds yipped and barked as she made a quick trip to the dresser to slide on a pair of lacy boy shorts. She padded barefoot out to find the bag of treats and gave them each one before setting them loose in the backyard.
“Alright,” she addressed the kitchen. “Now to figure out what he might like for breakfast.” She glanced at the clock and laughed, “Or lunch.”
A loud chime from her office rerouted her and she raced to answer the video call. A select number of people contacted her through video conference, and they only ever did so if it was an emergency.
She plopped down into her chair, accepted the call and pasted on a smile as the entire staff of her New York office appeared on the screen.
“Guys,” she greeted them. “What’s going on?”
Cecily fidgeted while the others spent a few seconds desperately trying to avoid Demo’s gaze.
“Um, I don’t know how to tell you this,” Cecily began. “The, uh, building for your new boutique burned to the ground last night.”
Demo’s heart sank. She sat back in her chair, stunned. “How?”
“We don’t know. They’re still looking into it but we’re going to need to find a new location.”
Another of her team, Paul if she recalled correctly, leaned closer to the camera. “How fast can you get to New York? We need to move on this if we’re going to be open for fashion week, honey.”
Her gaze skimmed over the clock in the bottom right side of the screen. “Crap. Okay. Give me an hour to get some things together and I’ll call you back with details.”
“Let me know what time your flight is scheduled to arrive,” Cecily spoke up. “I’ll come pick you up.”
Demo shook her head. “No thanks. I’m a big girl. I can get to the office on my own. See you guys in a bit.”
Clicking off the video screen, Demonica leaned back in her chair and cursed until she ran out of breath. They had been working on the newest Demonica Lingerie boutique for almost a year with every detail planned down to even the minutest thing. Now, it laid a charred ruin and she’d have to hustle to complete another one before the big fashion show they planned to put on in September.
“This would be so much easier if I could just poof in to the office,” she grumbled. “But no, the humans can’t know demons exist. Stupid rules.”
Two hours later her bags were packed for a week-long trip and Demo sat in a coffee shop down the street from her New York offices. The staff didn’t expect her for another two hours which gave her plenty of time to relax, enjoy a latte and think.
Marco’s email had come in as she landed in the alley a few blocks over and the news of Beelzebub’s change in tactics worried her. Instead of sending out the usual goof troop of made demons, he now relied on the best tracker in the supernatural world. Finder’s success rate boasted more captures than any other demon mercenary and she sat firmly in his crosshairs.
The message also made mention of a demon hunter team he’d discovered living in her sleepy little village. Details of their identities were sketchy at best, but Marco could confirm they were all military of some sort. Like Adam.
Dozens of questions swirled through her mind. He had to know she was a demon. Why hadn’t he tried to kill her if he did? Would he take her out when he discovered her true nature? Round and round the list of what ifs went on.
Demo shook her head. She didn’t know anything for certain and therein laid the problem. The list of things she knew about Adam weighed heavily toward him being a demon assassin and the thought of him using their relationship as a ruse to get close scared the hell out of her.
“Innocent until proven guilty,” she reminded herself.
Finders Keepers: Tempted will continue on November 20th, 2011.
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