Excalibur ~ World from Ashes

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Chapter 20

“Kilia wants a vial of that Excalibur crap,” Jace said, arms crossed over his chest as he leaned against the far wall.

We were in Tristan’s study, our usual meeting spot these days, especially with the idea that Alik had followers within Tristan’s ranks to begin with. That particular evening was rather special though. Instead of just Jace and Zak in the room with Tristan and me as the… ‘third wheel’ so to speak, it was the entire right hands, with the exception of Dane, of course. I was a little nervous with the other three in the room. Their presence commanded respect and obedience just by looking at them. Well… to be more precise, it was the woman that commanded respect and obedience. She was had this deadly kind of grace about her.

All she had to do was walk in a room and she would have everyone’s attention without even having to say a word, or lift a finger. She had long silvery hair that I was pretty sure was dyed, an eye patch over her left eye and the right one was a piercing gray color. Had I been straight, she would have been my type for certain. She was really hot. Except the only thing that would have kept me from touching her had I been straight, were the two very large looking hand guns on each thigh. Not to mention the huge ass hunting knife that hung from her belt along her lower back.

“What do you think, Ahmeil?” Tristan asked her.

Ahmeil turned her gray eye toward him and shrugged, “If Kilia wants it. We’ll get it.”

I shivered. She sounded so… sure about it. Like nothing would stand in her way of getting what she wanted or needed. That commanding tone of hers was also present. It sort of reminded me of Tristan’s tone when he was issuing orders to the gang members. There was no doubt in my mind as to why Ahmeil was one of the six right hands. She definitely fit the bill for it.

“Where are we gonna get this shit?” Jace was getting impatient and annoyed. It was getting easier to tell what he was thinking and feeling. His crossed arms and the way his eyebrows came down just slightly said he was annoyed.

“Track down the one who is selling it.”

“That’s easier said than done, you realize.”

I leaned back, sighing heavily in the chair that I was occupying. I glanced between the two. Something told me that Ahmeil and Jace just didn’t get along and on a level completely different than Jace just being mean because he didn’t know how to express himself. I was pretty sure those two just absolutely hated each other. Ahmeil’s eye narrowed as she watched Jace from across the room. I could almost see the tension building. Hell I could feel it, and if I turned on Excalibur I was pretty sure I could cut right through it.

“All right, all right, enough. You’re both going to make me crazy,” I huffed softly. I avoided Ahmeil’s gaze though. I could certainly feel it, that cold icy glare sent chilling pin pricks down my spine. Jace, on the other hand, rolled his eyes, but his expression soften with me. I took a moment and cleared my throat as I pulled an arm up and leaned my head into my loosely curled fist, “There was a case, when Alik had captured us a few weeks ago. It had the drug in it. He left without the case after I kicked his ass, but I… didn’t think to grab it.”

“I doubt it is still there,” Ahmeil’s sharp tone cut through.

I rolled my eyes. That was a possibility too, but as far as I was concerned, it was a better shot than jumping blindly into Alik’s territory to find some phantom drug dealer. Hell, the drug dealer could have been Alik himself. I bit my tongue to keep from snickering at that thought. Alik wouldn’t have been smart enough to create something so potent, so obviously it wasn’t him. The point was, though, that we didn’t have a clue as to who the drug dealer was, which sort of concerned me.

Excalibur was potent. It was definitely designed with a specific purpose. Which really made me wonder about the whole ‘drug dealer’ act. Could a drug addict really create something so… vile? So changing of human life? I really didn’t think so, which left my other options and my rather wild imagination to give me some rather nasty conclusions. Many of those conclusions probably a lot more plausible than I was willing to admit.

“Even if it isn’t there, it’s the best place to start,” I countered.

Ahmeil watched me carefully, her single, steel gray eye never wavering from me and narrowing very slightly. I held her gaze as well, even though it sent chills down my spine. It was silent in the room for quite a while before Tristan said anything as Ahmeil opened her mouth to say something, most likely she was going to fight against going back to the storage room.

“I agree,” Tristan said, his voice holding that commanding tone again, “Maybe we will get lucky and the case is still there.”

“And what if it isn’t? What if we run into Alik?” Ahmeil asked.

Tristan sighed, “And going after the drug dealer isn’t going to have the same result? With that plan you are more than definitely going to run into Alik, Ahmeil. Going back to the storage room is a fifty, fifty chance of not meeting Alik and his gang. Something that I think I am more willing to say yes to.”

Ahmeil tilted her head, arched her eyebrow and then finally dropped her eye on me before she nodded, “Fine then. And if we don’t find the case or the drug?”

“Come back here immediately. Don’t linger around, and do not go looking for the drug dealer.”

“May I…” I started slowly, and paused as I gained everyone’s attention. Clearing my throat I pushed on though I wasn’t sure what everyone else was going to think about what I had to say, “I… Don’t think that it’s just a drug dealer.”

My gaze shifted over to Tristan who watched me over his interlaced fingers. I wasn’t sure what he was thinking, his face was hard to read almost all the time. I took a quick look over to Zak and Jace. Zak had turned to Jace, watching Jace.

“Why do you think that, Valkyrie?” Jace asked me, his body shifting slightly as he glanced briefly at Zak who was watching him.

“I just… It doesn’t make sense for some random drug dealer to have something like Excalibur. Or to even have made it.”

“Maybe they could have it, but,” Zak started and shifted against the wall, turning his gaze from Jace, “I think I have to agree with the idea that making the drug is out of the question.”

“Is it so important right now about who made the drug?” Ahmeil asked.

I turned to her, “It’s not? If we find out who is making the drug, then we can stop them from making more.”

“How about we start with finding the drug, all right?” Ahmeil sighed heavily as she strode across the room and leaned on the back of my chair. I felt a chill down my spine as she stood behind me.


“Good, then who is going back to the… storage unit?” her voice sounded irritated.

“Me,” I immediately answered.

“No,” Tristan’s voice was sharp as he countered my volunteering myself.

“Why, Tristan? I should definitely be one of the ones that goes! I don’t mean to be condescending or arrogant, but if you run into Alik than I can take him. And what if you run into someone else that’s been drugged with Excalibur?”

“He has a point,” Jace said, interjecting between the two of us.

Thank you! I thought as I looked over at him with a smile on my face. He briefly caught my gaze, gave a very slight grin that I almost didn’t catch and then turned back to Tristan. Tristan had his fingers interlaced with his elbows up on the desk, his hazel gaze eyeing both Jace and I carefully. As per usual, his expression was hard to read. I could almost swear it was like a mask that he put on every time he didn’t want us to know what he was thinking. Which, honestly, was most of the time… unless I was having sex with him, and then it was very easy to know what he was thinking.

I blushed as that thought came to my mind. Turning away from Tristan who lifted an eyebrow at me, I occupied myself with studying the fabric of the seat that I was in. I could still feel Tristan’s gaze on me though and I glanced up a few times to meet his gaze before dropping it again. I never could keep my own emotions under control, or put up such a damned good poker face as Tristan could.

“All right. So that makes three of us,” Tristan said

“Who is three of us?” I asked.

“You, Jace and myself so far.”

“I’m going,” Zak said immediately after.

“Four. Anyone else?”

“I’ll go,” Ahmeil moved forward from behind my seat and positioned herself right in front of Tristan.

I looked up at her first and then over to Tristan who was watching her carefully. Finally he nodded at her, “All right. Five of us. When are we going?”

“Kilia wants that drug as soon as possible. The real question though, are you ready to be going, Tristan?” Jace asked, tilting his head as he regarded Tristan.

“I’m fine. What Kilia doesn’t know isn’t going to kill her, I promise.”

“It might kill you though,” Zak answered, shaking his head a bit and smiling as he shifted against the wall he was leaning on.

“You know, if the mission doesn’t kill you, Kilia will.”

“You’re not helping, Valkyrie,” Tristan said lowering his hands and frowning at me as I grinned up at him, leaning on my elbow in the chair.

“I know, but isn’t that why you love me?”

Tristan laughed at me then. His smile and the sound of his laughter was amazing and I couldn’t help but join him. I doubled over in the chair as I laughed with him, giggling and trying to hold it in even though I couldn’t. With a quick look up at Zak and Jace, I was relieved to see Zak chuckling and even Jace shaking his head with a small smirk on his lips. Ahmeil, on the other hand, I couldn’t figure her out. She didn’t move, nor did she make a sound.

Maybe she just doesn’t have a sense of humor, I thought as I chuckled a bit.

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