Chapter Nine - Cory
About an hour later, I found myself standing next to the bus terminal with the red-haired girl. I had purchased a ticket for Washington D.C, hoping to get some help from the CIA headquarters. Even though I didn’t want to involve them again, without a weapon or something to defend myself, I had no other choice. There, I could also keep the crystal under lock and key without a worry that anyone would be able to get to it. Even Scorpio wouldn’t be able to get passed the entire CIA and their steel enforced containment chambers underneath the building.
As we stood waiting, I watched the girl from the corner of my eye. Her face held an expression I just couldn’t read. I had never met anyone like her before and yet, she reminded me of Alexz at the same time. The way she swayed her hips when she was angry and the way the sun reflected off her face reminded me of her so much, it hurt to look at her. I couldn’t stop myself though, something in my chest stirring whenever my eyes caught hers. I couldn’t explain it but something inside of me felt like it needed to be near her at every moment. I fought it though, keeping my space away from her.
“What’s your name?” I asked, trying my best to break her out of her thoughts. She looked at me with a hesitated glance before sighing.
“Abby.” She replied.
“Abby Winters.” She was standing with her arms crossed her chest, leaning against the brick wall of the bus stop. Pushing off the wall, she reached up around her neck and unclasped the necklace. Holding it out, she looked at me. The way her emerald eyes held mine made my chest tighten for reasons I’m not sure of. “Here before I forget.” I took the crystal in my hand and quickly shoved it into the pocket of my jacket.
The bus pulled up to the curb and people began to fill into it from the line ahead of me. I turned, facing her. “Thanks for the money. I can send you it all back once I get where ever I’m going. Make sure you lay low for a while, okay? Scorpio has creeps all over the place.” She nodded, glancing over her shoulder.
“I know. That’s why the sooner you’re out of here, the better. Don’t worry about the money. I won’t be here long after this. Time for a new start I’m thinking.” She replied, fiddling with her hands in front of her. “Be safe.”
“You sure you don’t want to come with me then? I can get you to a safe house.” Shaking her head, she shoved her hands into her jean pockets.
“I can take care of myself. You better get on.” Looking back, I saw everyone but me was loaded. Glancing at her, I noticed she was already walking up the street away from me and towards her hotel. Sighing, I headed towards the door of the bus. I dug in my coat for my ticket, pulling it out. The chain for the crystal came with it, the crystal not connected to it. Digging deeper, I searched all my pockets. It was nowhere to be found. Frantically, I checked the ground. It wasn’t there. She must have taken it out of my pocket when I wasn’t looking.
Swearing, I took off running towards the direction she had gone. Why would she take it from me? I thought she wanted to get out of this as fast as she could. Why take it back when she knew I would come back looking for it? Rounding the corner, I saw her at the end of the alley. “Hey!” I called. She stopped, looking back at me confused. “Did you think I would just leave without the crystal?” I asked, jogging towards her.
“What are you talking about? I just gave it to you.” She replied, reaching in her pockets. Her eyes bulged a little though as she pulled the gem from her pocket. “Did you put this back in my pocket?”
“You’re joking, right? Why the hell would I do that? Give it back to me so I can get the fuck out of town.”
“Well I didn’t take it back! And it’s not like it magically appeared back in my pocket. Here.” She held it out towards me. Reaching over, I went to grab it. As my hand connected with it, a quick jab of electricity shot out of the crystal and into my hand. I released it quickly, my whole arm tingling. I let out a painful exclamation, shaking my hand. “What the hell was that?” She asked.
“It’s taken claim to a new operator. That’s what it does when someone holds on to it for too long that can control it. Usually women. This wouldn’t have happened if you had just given it back to me like I asked you to back in the hotel room!” I exclaimed.
“Well my apologies for not listening to the strange man in my room. It’s not like I had much choice! So now what?”
“I have to take you with me to face off with Scorpio. The device he has can track down the crystal. Sooner or later, he’ll come looking for you and it. I can’t leave you here and go looking for him. Fucking terrific.” Running a hand through my hair, I glanced at her. She looked paler. “It’ll be fine. The crystal will protect you for the most part.”
“It’s not that. I just don’t want to see Scorpio.”
“I’m sure he won’t remember you. He’s got bigger things on his mind than one of his kid’s friends from school. We should get back to your room and make a game plan.”
“I don’t want to go with you. Can’t you do this without the crystal?”
“I don’t need the crystal to kill him. I need to keep you with me to make sure the damn thing is safe. He wants that crystal back more than anything in this world. He’ll kill anyone who gets in his way even if you did know him as a child.”
“I’m well aware of that.” She snapped, running a hand through her hair. Glancing at her face, I could tell she was terrified. Had something happened when she was younger that she witnessed? I couldn’t imagine growing up near Scorpio and befriending his children. I hadn’t even thought of him as having any offspring. None were listed in his profile when I first received his case on my desk. I had assumed that he had no family.
“I understand that you are afraid but I promise I will protect you. Nothing bad will happen to you as long as you’re with me.” She gave me a short nod, looking towards the direction of her hotel.
“We should get back to the room before someone sees us.”