The Queen’s order for Bill to have transportation ready within an hour didn’t go as expected.
Bill was able to get three stretch Hummers with drivers, from Anubis Airlines, that would transport us all to the airport. However, they were not able to pick us up until thirty minutes before sunrise and the airport was forty-five minutes away.
Needless to say, the Queen was not happy about traveling in a coffin to the airport when there was a threat to her undead life literally looming on the horizon. However, there was nothing else to be done; so we waited for Anubis.
True to his word, Eric had room service deliver food for me and I was incredibly grateful since I hadn’t eaten since yesterday. I dug into the steak and potatoes while Eric excused himself to get our luggage and see if the Queen needed anything.
I enjoyed silence for twenty minutes before the insanity of the night intruded on me again.
I was lying on the bed with my eyes closed when the door to my adopted room suddenly opened and Andre stepped inside.
Joy. My favorite vampire.
“The Queen requests your presence.” He stated firmly.
I couldn’t help the sigh that escaped my exhausted lips as I nodded. Luckily, Andre simply turned away and left the room. He obviously expected me to follow.
As I walked into the room, Eric re-entered the suite with Seigbert following close behind. I noticed that all of our party was now accounted for. In addition to our earlier gathering, Mr. Cataliades, Carla, and Diantha had joined everyone in the sitting room.
So, the room was basically Grand Central Station as everyone waited for the five o’clock train.
“Ms. Stackhouse, since we seem to have some time before we leave,” Sophie-Ann’s voice showed her obvious displeasure with the situation, “I’d like to find out as much as we can from the tiger and his sister.”
“Yes, Your Majesty.” I replied easily.
What else was I supposed to say? “I’m really too tired. Can we do it tomorrow?”
As if that would go over well.
Andre went to the side room and guided a glamoured and gagged Frannie in from the ‘prison’ bedroom, as the Queen continued to speak. “I understand that it is easier for you to read humans. Therefore, you can start with the sister.”
I nodded in reply as I walked over to stand in front of Quinn’s sister. I glanced at Andre and tried to suppress my body’s shudder of repulsion as I spoke to him.
“Can you remove the glamour, please?” I asked, and he immediately lifted the haze from her brain.
And she was PISSED OFF.
What the fuck? Why am I here? Why is this bitch staring at me? She said she was dating my brother but she’s not his type. He said it was just business.
That stung. Even if it was true.
“Frannie, your brother is working for De Castro. Do you know anything about that?” I asked the question as it occurred to me that I didn’t even know who De Castro was. I assumed he was the King of Nevada.
How am I supposed to answer her when my mouth is covered? Stupid idiot. Like I’d tell her or these vamps anything anyway.
“Did your brother not tell you that I’m a telepath?” I pressed and my head automatically tilted to the side.
Maybe she didn’t know anything.
Telepath! Those don’t exist. Do they? Why the hell wouldn’t Johnny tell me? Is that why he’s with her? Why was she asking about De Castro?
I sighed. I was getting nowhere.
“Do you know anything about the Nevada vampires?” I tried again.
Johnny owes them because of our mom. Shit. Don’t think about it.
“You can’t hide anything from me Frannie.” I answered her thoughts. “Do you know what the vamps are making your brother do for them?”
Fucking vampires. I wish I could stake them all but he doesn’t tell me anything.
“She doesn’t know anything except that her brother owes the Nevada vampires.” I announced to the room. “Quinn seems to keep all of the business to himself.”
The Queen nodded and Andre led Frannie back out of the room. I wanted to ask what would happen to her, and I looked to Eric with the words on the tip of my tongue. However, he shook his head a tiny amount and I knew that now was not the time to ask.
Holding my tongue was nearly impossible.
This was going to take some getting used to.
However, my attention was quickly diverted to the struggling form of my, silver chained, former lover being dragged across the room.
“How much will you be able to read from him?” The Queen asked.
“It’s not as clear as humans, ma’am.” I explained. “I will need to touch him to get anything and it’s not a constant stream as it would be with a human. I would suggest removing the gag so we can hear his words as well. At the very least, I should be able to tell if he is lying.”
As the Queen nodded and Andre was about to remove Quinn’s gag, Bill’s phone rang.
The Queen’s eyes immediately turned to him and she nodded her approval for him to answer the phone. After a few minutes of conversation, it was apparent that the Hummers had arrived, and everyone needed to start being loaded into their travel coffins.
Thankfully, Quinn’s interrogation would wait.
Moving everyone from the suites to the Hummers was practically a military covert operation.
Everyone was divided into three groups based on the car they would be traveling in. With each group, two vampires waited to enter their coffins, until they arrived at the vehicles; therefore, they could protect the others in their group. In addition, the vampires were glamouring any humans the group came across, to try and prevent anyone tipping off the Fellowship. I also went with each group to try and sense any vampires or Weres along the way, so we could avoid them.
The Queen was taking no chances that the Fellowship would be tipped off early.
The first group included the Queen, Andre, Seigbert, Bill, and Mr. C. Of course, Andre walked in front and Seigbert behind our caravan as I walked beside Mr. C. He was as cheerful and energetic as always, and I found myself wondering how I could get some of his energy.
The Anubis workers loaded all the coffins into the first Hummer along with their luggage, whilst I continued to scan the parking garage, alongside Andre and Seigbert. Once they were all loaded, I walked back up to the suite with the next group of Anubis drivers to get the second part of our group.
When I arrived back in the suite, I reported the first group didn’t have any problems so we could start moving the second convoy downstairs. Henrik and Jake were already in their coffins and Gervaise and Cleo were ready to act as escorts. Carla was the only other person in the second Hummer. She had been provided a silver loaded gun to protect the vampires if necessary.
Mentally, she was freaking out but outwardly she seemed calm. Apparently she had been with Gervaise long enough to get used to some of the cloak and dagger stuff. I seemed to have underestimated her a little.
The second group ran into a few humans that had to be glamoured, but we made it down to the fire exit we were using with relative ease.
“We will watch the perimeter.” Andre told me. “Take the Anubis humans back for the third group. We must hurry.”
I nodded and motioned for the last group of workers to follow me.
The only vampires in the last group were Eric and Pam, so we didn’t have any coffins to take down with us this time. They would escort our group down and get in their coffins in the garage.
The fun part about the third group was escorting a silver chained Quinn and a glamoured Frannie. Luckily, Diantha would be traveling with me in the third Hummer so I wouldn’t be left alone with the two prisoners. Also, I didn’t have to carry a gun like Carla because Diantha was more than enough protection. She was lethal.
At least something was going right for me tonight.
Well, besides Eric of course.
I was snapped from my thoughts when I felt a mind approaching. It wasn’t human or vampire, but I recognized the pattern.
“Britlingen.” I whispered quickly.
I heard Eric say something under his breath but I couldn’t understand his words. Before I could ask him what he said, Clovache was standing in front of us blocking our way down the hall.
“Interesting.” Was all she said to us as she surveyed our group.
“Warrior.” Eric said moving to stand in front of her. “There is a threat to the hotel. If anyone realizes that someone has found out about the plan, then bombs will be set off early. Our delegation is leaving and will then start notifying others of the threat. Mass evacuation cannot be instigated.”
“Understood.” She nodded. “We will be discrete.”
Then she was gone.
“We must hurry.” Eric said over his shoulder and I scanned the area for any additional witnesses.
“We are clear to go to the back stairwell.” I answered quickly.
With those words, we all made our way down to the emergency exit. Luckily, Quinn didn’t struggle too much. Since he had learned about the bombs in the building, he knew going with us was the best bet for the time being.
“Finally.” Andre growled as we emerged.
“We had to inform the Britlingen when we crossed paths.” Eric informed him as he motioned for me to get into the third car with Diantha. Then, he pushed Quinn inside with gloved hands.
Andre glared at me like it was my fault that we had to share our knowledge, but answered Eric with a nod.
Within fifteen minutes, everyone was resting in their coffins and loaded into the stretch Hummers. When we left the parking garage and started towards the interstate, I let out a breath I didn’t realize I’d been holding. Pam would make the call from inside her coffin in five minutes. It would give us enough time to get away from the hotel and a few minutes to spare before she had to rest.
“Dontletyerguarddown.” Diantha warned softly in her fast paced voice.
“You’re right.” I took a deep breath and kept my mind opened as I leaned back against the headrest, and looked out the side window.
When we had been on the road for about thirty-five minutes, and the sun had barely been up for five, I heard it. It was a hazy thought as if it had been glamoured into his mind, but it was there.
Call 555-2548 and say ‘Dallas’ before hanging up.
“Damn it.” I yelled suddenly and Diantha was on alert. “Call your uncle and tell him to stop their driver from making any phone calls.”
Reading my body language accurately, Diantha understood the urgency and immediately dialed her phone. I listened to her warn her uncle and watched the Hummer in the front of our caravan swerve slightly in the lane, before turning my attention back to Diantha.
“Says too late.”
I flopped back in the seat and tears welled in my eyes. All those vampires and humans were not going to have any real chance. How could this have happened? How could they have gotten so far in their planning?
And worst of all, I felt guilty because we were safe.
“Not yer fault.” Diantha said as if she was reading my mind.
“I know.” I said with a deflated tone. “I just wish we could do more.”
She nodded and I asked the question that needed to be asked now.
“The driver was glamoured.” I stated.
Diantha turned to look at me. “Oneofours?” She said it so fast it was hard to pick up one word from the next, but I understood the question.
“I don’t know.” I sighed again.
I put my head back again, closed my eyes, and thought about the bombs and the hotel. Would we be able to hear it from here? Would anyone survive? Dan had been left behind in the hotel so I couldn’t ask him any more questions. However, he had revealed that there were bombs in the basement and on various floors. If that were true, then it would be unlikely that many would escape.
I wonder how they got bombs on to all the floors.
My eyes snapped open. “OH. MY. GOD.”
“The luggage.” I yelled.
When she still looked confused, I explained as rapidly as possible. “The Fellowship spy said there were bombs on each floor. When we first arrived, I picked up a call in the Queen’s suite to get an unclaimed bag. Andre sent me to go get it but it didn’t have a readable name on it. We just left it in the Queen’s suite.”
“Bombs in the bag. Bags with the Queen.” Diantha said quickly as she caught on to my thoughts and dialed her phone again.
I nodded and heard Diantha relay our suspicions to Mr. C. As I watched Diantha talking on the phone, I saw some movement coming from my right. When I turned around to look back at Quinn and Frannie, Quinn suddenly stilled.
I didn’t trust it.
“Diantha.” I managed to speak out before Quinn lunged – chains and all – toward the semi-demon.
“Shit.” I yelled as Diantha dropped her phone and focused on forcing Quinn back towards his seat.
Didn’t we have enough to deal with!
I was surprised at how evenly matched Diantha and Quinn seemed to be even though he was chained. Diantha landed a punch across Quinn’s face, and he was trying to use his weight to force her onto the floor, so he could hold her down with his chained body. As Diantha leaned forward, her shirt rode up slightly in the back and I saw a knife sheathed on her belt. I quickly leaned forward, grabbed the six inch silver knife, and moved to squat behind Quinn with the knife to his throat.
“We don’t have time for you. Sit back down and be a good little kitty.” I ordered. He started to move again when I forced the tip of the knife harder against his throat. “I’ve killed before Quinn, don’t push me.”
Those last words came with a little bit of nausea but I had to make sure he knew I would protect my friend.
He stilled long enough for Diantha to pull out another knife and force him back into his seat. As she was tightening his chains, I asked her about the bomb.
“What are we doing about the bomb in the other Hummer?”
“Uncle looking for it.” She said in her shrill voice while she continued to work on Quinn’s chains. “Said he could reach bags. Throw it out when he finds it.”
That was the most human I’d ever heard her sound and I was shocked for a second. Quickly, though, I decided I was more interested in watching the first vehicle in our caravan. It was hard to see though because there was another stretch Hummer in between us and the Queen. I just kept looking to see if I saw anything tossed onto the ground.
Diantha eventually got Quinn tied to the seat across from us and we were probably five minutes from the airport when all hell broke loose.
I hadn’t taken my eyes off the road or the Hummers in front of us, so I had enough warning to scream. I tried to brace myself but I was too late. Before I knew it I was thrown backwards in the seat and everything went dark.