Since it's still wonderful weather in London, I took my laptop on the roof park today and continued with the sequel to No Wings Attached. To update you: I'm about 54k into the novel and plan on roughly 70/72k. Might well be more, I never know since my characters love to take over.
A little insight:
Sam is Adam's best friend, who's offered to train her. They need to do that in secrecy and it's the first time she's actually alone with him. Totally alone and exposed...
Like last night, I sneak out the bedroom on silent soles. My feet patting on the cool tiles, I walk over into the kitchen area to put on my clothes. Again, doubts creep up on me and I wonder why the hell I've agreed to this, but another quick look at my friend who's fast asleep, reminds me how vulnerable she is, just by being human, brushing them away. I need to make sure she, and everyone around me, is safe. When I pull the door to our apartment quietly close, a sense of wickedness follows me, through the reception area, across the street and right into the bar. Sam jumps into a stand as soon as he sees me and waves, seemingly relieved that I came. Casually, I walk over and nod. The wickedness has been replaced by nervousness, but I'm here now, so I might as well go through with it. He would've had killed you already if he wanted to. How many times do I have to tell myself that? It's not the best sign. Stop being such a baby, Celia!
“Hey, lass. Glad you finally decided to show up.”
I snort. “I'm not alone here, remember?”
He holds up his hand and I immediately take a step back, my heart pounding fast. Sam grins, shakes his head and lowers his hand in an instant. “You really need to work on your trust issues, lass.”
“Don't make me regret leaving my comfy bed.” I stare at him, challenging.
“Calm down, Celia. Seriously, you need to learn how to get your temper under control.”
“Thought that's what you're going to teach me.”
He leaves ten-Euro-note on the bar, says something in Spanish to the girl behind it and beckons me outside. I follow, still filled with mixed emotions.
“Psst, Celia, over here,” he whispers.
I turn and can just about make him out at the side of the house, half-hidden by a hedge. Okay. Now or never!I draw a shaky breath and step into the shadow.
“Ready?” He holds out his hand.
Taking it, I'm only able to nod and seconds later it goes dark. When I feel solid ground under my feet again, I nearly choke at the stench.
“Gross! Did you have to bring me here?”
“Sorry, roses don't grow in these places.”
I cough again, then realise that – unlike last time – the cave is lit by thick white candles, flickering at our arrival. A few smaller ones are on the ground and six bigger ones are placed in cavities in the wall.
“If it wouldn't stink this much, it would be almost romantic,” I say.
“Don't get your hopes up.” Sam grins.
“You need to learn when someone is ironic.”
He laughs. “Hey, irony is my middle name.”
I just snort. The doubts begin to niggle again. How stupid of me, if something happens, nobody could even track me down here. Angry tears shoot into my eyes. How could I be so thoughtless. At least I told Tom I loved him when we spoke earlier. A part of me wishes I had explained my plans to him, the other part is glad I didn't. But what about Emily? She'd be worried sick, waking up to an empty bed and when she can't find me anywhere.
Without any warning, blue light balls hiss around me, only missing me just about, crashing into the walls with enough force to send some pieces of rock falling. Deja vu. I knew it! I duck and throw my arms around my head in panic. A few seconds pass, the only sound is the rubble raining down around me like hale on a winter's night. I lift my head.
“Are you out of your mind?” I shout. My thoughts are racing. I knew I couldn't trust him. Arsehole!But what can I do now? I'm so sorry, Tom. I love you.
He stands across me, casually leaning against a big rock, grinning and before I can say anything else, another streams of blue balls crash into the wall behind me. My heart thuds; I can hear the blood rushing in my ears and I feel sick. Was it all a trick, part of a plan to eliminate me? Would be typical for me. I draw bad luck to me like manure the flies.
“Sam! Stop, please!” My begging is muffled by the thunder of the next light balls hitting the ground hard. Smoke makes it impossible to see him; he must have aimed at the small water pond. His laugh echoes around the cave. I press myself against the wet stones, barely able to prevent them from giving in.
Aren't I supposed to see my whole life passing before my eyes?I'm scared and wonder if I will make it out of here alive. I look up and try to make out where he is, but can't. I know he won't be able to see me through the smoke either, so I remain silent. Waiting. Breathing heavily.
“Come on, lass. Is that all you've got to give?”
The familiar hissing sound and another blue light balls emerges from the smoke, coming directly at me. It's too late for me to duck and, in reflex, I hold up both of my hands, palm toward him. The tingling sensation I had when Boldie attacked me, reappears and the ball dances in the air. The smoke clears up, leaving a fine mist on my exposed arms and face. Desperately, I think of how to get out of this situation, to defy Sam all he while I'm trying to keep up with the pressure against my hands. He's not changed his position, his relaxed smile, though, has disappeared. I concentrate on the dancing ball again, keeping it away for a bit longer, but I feel my strength is weakening. Suddenly, it explodes and is replaced by the beautiful firework I saw last time. I stare at it, fascinated but wary. I'm still alive, that's got to count for something.
With a smug grin Sam says, “Lesson one. Be prepared at all times.”
“You are an arsehole, you know that?” My voice is hoarse. I'm shaking violently, partly from the adrenaline, partly from the relief that rushes through me.
“Sorry, lass, I needed to provoke you to tickle your defence mechanisms and it's worked. It always does.” He relaxes, hangs his arms. “Those people who are after you won't miss, they'll hit you with full force. No mercy. And the sooner you learn to react quickly, the better. I guess I've demonstrated how important it is.”
I glare at him. “Are you doing that with all of your trainees?”
He nods. “Afraid so.”
I don't know what else to say, still shaking and furious about his attack, I brush off my clothes which are full of dust, when he lifts his hands, a blue ball hovering over each. I stiffen again. Go on, then. Do it! Anger rises in me. He knows he's much stronger than I am and it annoys me. And he can do whatever he wants, I'd not be able to defend myself, especially not if I'm not prepared. I thought he'll teach me slowly, how to produce those balls myself, how to jump maybe, but no, he's just having fun taking the piss. Not with me!I collect myself and push my palms in his direction as if to try to open a door which is stuck. The blue ball hovering over his left hand smashes into the wall behind him. Leaving Sam with a rather surprised face.
Satisfied with the result, I relax my pose.
“Wow. Adam said you've got some great power in you, but I didn't expect that.”
Now it's me who presents a smug smile. “Got you, eh?”
He rubs his forehead, still having the other hand stretched out, illuminating the cave into a soft blue. “Do it again.”
I nod, position myself and close my eyes, collecting all my energy and thoughts, then push my hand forward again. Nothing.
“Come on, lass. I know you can do better. I didn't feel anything.”
“Okay, give me a second.” I breathe in deeply, thinking of last time in the cave. Boldie and the other guy, of Adam and what he did to me when we first bumped into each other. I thrush my hand forward with more force, sending a rather perplexed Sam flying backwards, hitting his head hard, the ball evaporates and everything goes quiet at once.