He catches my fist in his hand and twists my arm behind my back, pinning it in place. I swing my other arm back my elbow going into his stomach and he loosens his grip on me long enough for me to turn around and kick him backward in the chest.
He wastes no time in getting back on his feet and coming at me again. He swings his leg up and I block it, pushing it back down as he swings his fist at me and nails me in the side of the head.
I fall back against the wall and he pulls his fist back. I dodge and his fist makes contact with the wall, I trip him onto the floor and he grabs hold of my ankle, pulling me down with him.
I roll to the side as his arm swings out, grabbing it in the process and pinning it behind his back, my knee moves into the back of his neck, holding him in place.
His free arm grabs hold of my arm and pulls me off him, pinning me beneath him, I bring my knee up into his stomach and shove him off me before slamming his head into the floor and successfully pin him down.
I get to my feet and hold my hand out to him, he eyes it warily before finally taking it and allowing me to help him to his feet, glaring at me the entire time.
He stomps out of the room.
Cody eyes me. “What exactly did you say to him?” He questions.
“Nothing,” I reply and quickly depart from the room, looking for Devin. I find him sitting by the pool.
“Why?” I ask as soon as I’m close enough.
“Why what?” He snaps.
“Why are you holding back?” I cross my arms over my chest as I take another step towards him. “Why are you pretending to be the worst agent on the team?”
“It’s none of your business.” He turns away from me and stares at the water. “Why’d you say that?” He asks after a moment of silence.
“A couple reasons.” I shrug. “One of them was because I wanted you to stop holding back.”
He scoffs. “And the other?”
“I wanted to see how you’d react.”
“You mean if I’d admit it.”
“Basically, yes.” I take a seat next to him.
“How’d you know about my father?” He questions quietly.
“I pieced it together,” I respond. “That really shouldn’t come as a surprise to you.”
He lets out a sigh. “It doesn’t, I just thought it’d take you longer. I thought I’d have more time.”
“Nobody ever has time. So why?”
“I didn’t want my status to get me any special treatment. I wanted to get there on my own, and I hate the attention.”
“You’re easily better Chase, so why not take the leader position?”
“I’m not a leader, I don’t want to be a leader.”
“Then why settle for the worst on the team when you’re clearly the best?”
He shrugs, “I just...” He pauses as if lost in thought. “I don’t want to be the best.”
“Why not?” I press.
“Because I don’t want to turn into my dad.”
I scoff. “Believe me you could never turn into your dad, he’s...a real piece of work.”
“Is that you being nice?”
“Considering I didn’t call him something else in front of you, yes.” I tease, and he laughs. “Don’t worry too much about it, if you ever turned out in any way like your dad, I’d be there to knock some sense into you.”
He laughs again. “You are the last person I would want to talk some sense into me.”
“I said knock, not talk. Talking’s not really my thing.”
“So I’ve noticed.” He teases, suddenly a very devious look crosses his face. “So you and Cody...”
“Don’t even start.” I cut him off, burying my face in my hands. He laughs loudly. I pause for a while before finally asking, “Is he a good father?”
“Who?” I give him a flat look. He holds his hands up in mock surrender. “Yeah, he’s a very different man outside the agency.” I give him a look. “You don’t believe me?” He asks.
“No, it’s not that. I just...I can’t picture him as anything more than a damn tyrant.”
He laughs. “No, he’s not that bad, other than when he complains about you.” I roll my eyes. “He actually respects you.”
“Yeah right,” I say sarcastically.
“I’m serious, he has a lot of respect for you.”
I shake my head. “Zero doesn’t have any respect for anyone but himself.”
“That’s not true.”
“Yeah well you’re his son,” I mutter. “You’re supposed to see him differently.” He nods slightly in agreement.
I get to my feet and turn to leave.
“You’re not going to tell them are you?” Devin questions, I turn my head to look at him.
“About which part? Your skills or your status?”
“No.” I shake my head. “You’re secret’s safe with me.”
I make my way into the room I’ve chosen to use and sit on the bed. I unzip my backpack and pull out my laptop, plugging in the flash drive soon after.
I wait for the video to load before clicking on it and watching. Fifty-seven’s familiar voice fills the room.
“Shhhhhh!” She hisses “You’re going to give us away!” The camera is pointed at a tall and narrow staircase.
“You’re to the one who won’t shut up.” Eighty-three retorts.
“Shhhhhh!” She shushes him again.
“Thirteen’s going to kill you.” He mutters.
“And you.” Fifty-seven chirps back. He grumbles something under his breath.
“What was that?” Fifty-seven asks, whirling the camera around into his face.
“Nothing,” he mutters, swatting at the camera. “You know what, forget Thirteen, Seventy-seven’s going to kill you!” He whisper-shouts. Fifty-seven realigns the camera with the staircase again.
She laughs evilly. “I’d like to see him try.”
“Actually I take that back, Seventy-seven and Thirteen will only brutally assault you, Forty-five will kill you.”
“Pick a number and stick with it man, I can’t count that high.” She whispers sarcastically.
“Shit someone’s coming!” I hear him shout, the camera ducks behind a corner, before poking out at the staircase again.
“Oh crap,” He mutters. “We’re dead.”
“Hmm, this trap was supposed to be set for Thirteen, but I guess Sixty and Sixty-one can share the glory.” Fifty-seven muses.
“Glory!?” Eighty-three hisses. “We’re going to get skinned alive!”
“I know isn’t this great!?”
The bed I’m currently sitting on shifts, and I turn my head to see Cody sitting next to me, his eyes focused on my laptop screen but I make no move to shut it off.
“Is that your old team?” He asks, still focused solely on the screen that is now jumping around as Fifty-seven and Eighty-three run.
“A few of them,” I reply.
“Who’s the girl.” He questions.
“She was my best friend...the one I originally hated.”
“You never told me how you two became friends.” He says. I shut my laptop.
“A story for another time perhaps, right now, we’ve got to be prepared.”
He gives me a confused look. “For what?”
“The party,” I reply. “You all need dates.” I turn and leave and it takes him a minute to process what I just said.
“Wait, what?” He calls after me and not long after I hear his footsteps sound behind me.
“Tony’s going to be expecting a group of four guys and girl to show up but if we were to come with dates, it’d be so much easier to just walk right in.”
“Why can’t we just enter alone?”
“It would still look a little suspicious, so having dates is our best bet.”
“Alright, then you’re my date.” He says as if it’s no big deal. I however nearly trip over my feet and he has to shoot his arms out to steady me, I brush it off.
“Haha, very funny. I already have a date.” I see his eyes narrow out of the corner of my eyes at my statement.
“Who?” He questions, his voice strained. I hide a smirk as I reply.
He abruptly stops in his steps and I continue on down the hall, I don’t make it very far.
I’m pushed into the wall and he places his hands against the wall on either side of me. I glare at him, he seems to tower over me at the moment.
“Why what?” I ask, repeating Devin’s words from earlier.
“Why are you going with Zack?” His eyes darken as he says Zack’s name.
“Because for one, the entire mission involved me getting close to him, and two he asked.” I decide to mess with him some more. “And who could say no to a face like that.”
I’m rewarded with an even darker look from him as well as a sound similar to a growl.
“I’m sure you could’ve.” He grumbles.
I shrug. “Well, I’ll never know.” I duck under his arm and move around him, continuing down the hall.
My phone beeps from inside my pocket for like the one-hundredth time today, I don’t bother checking it, it’s most likely Zero anyway.
I make it to the end of the hall before I feel a presence behind me.
I sigh. “Cody the conversation is over-” I don’t get the chance to finish the sentence as I’m grabbed by my upper arm and spun around.
I’m pressed up against Cody’s hard chest, a scowl forms on my face and I open my mouth to make a smart arse remark but I’m silenced as his lips connect with mine.
I freeze for a split second before moving my lips in sync with his. He pulls away and looks at me, his arms wrapped firmly around my waist making me feel small and powerless compared to him...till I remember exactly who I am and realize I flip on his arse if I really wanted to.
“Why?” He whispers still holding on to me as if I’d disappear if he were to let go...probably. “Why don’t you want a relationship?”
“I never said I didn’t want one,” I admit quietly.
“If you’re worried about yourself, I’d never do anything to hurt y-”
“It’s not that.” I cut him off and look up at him meeting his eyes. “I’m not worried about myself, I’m worried about you. It’ll only end badly, and not for me.” I shake my head. “I can’t lose anyone else,” I whisper before bringing my hands up and pushing on his chest.
He gets the message and releases me, I turn and run down the hallway and duck into a random room. I run my hands through my hair.
Could I really be in a relationship? Would it ever actually work between us?
The ringtone of my phone splits through the silent room. I remove it from my pocket and glance at the number, I don’t recognize it.
I answer it and hold it up to my ear, planning on telling whoever’s on the other end that they’ve got the wrong number and I’ll hunt them down in their sleep if they call me again. I’m greeted by a familiar voice.
“You know what I find most interesting about you?” I feel my breath catch in my throat but waste no time in replying.
“No, do tell,” I say, my tone cold and harsh.
“You never learn.” He says calmly. “I honestly thought that you’d have gotten the message by now, I mean how many more people do I have to kill to get you to understand? I guess I could start with this new team of yours.”
“I’m only using them.” I lie. “They mean nothing to me.”
“Oh really, cause the security cameras that were in the cell with you and your new boy toy say otherwise.” I feel my blood run cold.
“Leave him alone Garrett,” I say, shocked when my voice comes out even.
He laughs tauntingly. “Make me.”