“What person in
their right mind would text a random stranger and tell him to come to the
middle of a field in farm country?” Zavier rolled his eyes.
“I don’t know. People do stupid things just for shits
and giggles all the time.” The man shrugged, pulling his jacket tighter around
“For that matter, what idiot follows those instructions
unless they have a damn good reason?”
Again the man simply shrugged, then stuffed his hands in
his pockets. “Look, I don’t think it’s unreasonable for me to ask for proof
that you are who you say you are and that you’re actually capable of doing the
things that book said you could do.”
Zavier paused for a moment, considering, impressed by
his guts. Most took his abilities on faith, hope, and a bit of greed. Instead
of turning on the intimidation as he usually did in an effort to keep these
encounters short, he decided to oblige. He balled his fist and squeezed. When
he opened his hand, an orb of electricity danced in his palm. The man gaped and
stumbled back a step. After a moment, his expression changed from fear to
fascination. He stepped closer to Zavier in an attempt to get a better look.
“Can I touch it?” The man inched his hand closer to the
tiny lightning flashes that danced across Zavier’s hand.
“Only if you’re in the mood to be electrocuted.”
The man jerked his hand back, tucking it under his arm.
Zavier stifled a laugh, then turned down the intensity
until the ball dissipated and all that remained were strings of power arcing
between his fingers like a Tesla ball. “Here, touch my hand now.”
The man hesitated, then reached out and placed his palm
over Zavier’s. “Wow. That’s awesome.” Leaving his hand there, seeming to enjoy
the light tingle Zavier’s abilities had generated, the man laughed a warm sound
that rolled through Zavier.
Zavier took a moment to study the hand touching his. He
had long, slim fingers, like those of a pianist and soft, yet slightly
calloused palms. The man’s jacket hid his arms, but the opening revealed a
form-fitting white T-shirt molded to a rather impressive set of abs and a
broad, muscular chest. Very nice. Oh yeah, a night or two with this guy
could definitely improve his mood. Call him shallow, but he couldn’t help but
admire a well-toned body.
Tearing his focus from the guy’s pecs, he scanned upward
to take his first good look at the man’s face. Strong chin, lips made for
kissing, and long, dark lashes that shielded the man’s eyes. Zavier wanted to
see those eyes.
“Convinced?” He spoke a little louder than necessary in
an attempt draw the man’s attention.
The man’s head jerked up. When their gazes met, Zavier
froze. The world stopped spinning as he stared into gorgeous, green eyes.
Something about them tugged at his memory, causing a tingle at the base of his
skull. Zavier shifted his attention to study the rest of the face before him.
He clasped the man’s wrist, preventing him from backing away.
Think dammit, think. You know this face. Vague
irritation churned inside of him at his inability to remember. Sometimes the
rules and regs of demon life sucked, especially the “Swiss cheese memory”
“Hey. Are you okay?”
Zavier’s attention turned back to his potential client,
when both the words and the tugging on his arm finally registered.
“Oh, yeah. Sorry about that.” He released the man, who
took a step back. “So, let’s get on with this.” Zavier stared at the ground as
he stepped back, needing to regroup. Nothing about this assignment was going as
“Uh, sure. H-how do we do this? Do I need to say some
type of special incantation? Offer up more blood?”
“No, just tell me what you want. This is demonology 2.0,
the upgraded edition. We’ve phased out a lot of that old school, bodily fluids