Anubis copyright c. 2015 T.A. Chase

Part Thirty-Eight-

The scent was faint, but he could follow it easily enough. Thoth stayed right with him as they moved through the back streets, avoiding the small groups of people wandering home from work—or restaurants.

He kept going, trusting Thoth would keep an eye on their back trail. Time eased by without Anubis knowing until he got to a place where a new scent joined the others. His upper lip curled back and he whined. Stopping, he glanced around. They’d wandered back to where his hotel was.

Anubis shifted before whirling to snatch his clothes from Thoth. “We have to get up to my suite. They’re here.”

“They were here,” Amun spoke from the back entrance of the hotel. “Unfortunately, they got the drop on me somehow.” He was rubbing the back of his head.

Clenching his hands, Anubis did his best not to grab a hold of his brother and shake him. “What do you mean they got the drop on you? How the hell did that happen?”

Amun shrugged. “I don’t know. I was about to contact you when I realized you were here. I already talked to Horus and the ladies are fine. We should’ve known they wouldn’t go after them. They were probably watching Jamil and you, so they can see how close you are.”

“They think Jamil knows more than he does. We have to find him before they start torturing him.” Anubis tried not to think about what Kellan looked like after Sterling’s men got a hold of him.

“Can you follow his scent?” Thoth asked, seeming not interested in wasting any more time.

He didn’t need to be in his animal shape to track Jamil’s scent, but when it disappeared at the next corner, he growled.

“They put him in a vehicle and the windows weren’t rolled down,” he told the others. “Who are these men? Why not come after us? Why take Jamil?”

“Because he’s your weakness. They believe you’ll do anything to keep him safe.” Amun held up his hand to stop Anubis from saying anything. “We all know you would, but he’s not safe anymore. We have to work on the assumption that they’re going to work him over and all he can tell them is that we have the book.”

“Jamil could tell them where it is, but that won’t do any good since no one can get to our place without one of us taking them. Plus we’re not going to hand over that book.” Amun grimaced.

Anubis bit his lip then said, “How are they going to get a hold of us to tell us their demands?”

Bastet materialized next to Amun and punched him in the shoulder. “Do we need to give you a refresher course on safe guarding people? Also on how to keep your eyes open for potential bad guys?”

“No.” Amun snarled at him. “I don’t know how they managed to sneak up on me. It’s never happened before.”

There was a hint of guilt in Amun’s voice, and as much as Anubis wanted to jump on it, he knew it wasn’t important at the moment. What was done was done. They could yell at Amun all they wanted, but it wouldn’t change the situation.

“We’ll discuss that later,” he said. “Right now, we have to start searching every group we know to figure out who might have done this.”

Bastet nodded. “Horus will meet us in your suite. There’s no point in watching the women any more. They won’t go after them.”

Suddenly Anubis’ phone rang and they all froze. He took a deep breath as he dug it out of his pocket then stared at the unknown number.

“Are you going to answer that?” Horus asked, having appeared a few seconds earlier.

“Yes.” He swiped his finger over the screen then hit speaker. “Al Hazzan.”

“Let’s dispense with the lies, Anubis. We all know you are more than a consultant for UNESCO. I’m calling to tell you we need to make a trade. I have something that I believe is very important to you.” The voice had a thick accent and Anubis wasn’t entirely sure where the man was from.

“How do I know you haven’t killed him already?” Anubis shot a look at Bastet who nodded.

The man laughed. “You don’t trust us?”

“Seriously? After you kidnapped him, I’m supposed to trust that you’ll keep your word and return him to me.” Anubis snorted.

There were some sounds then Jamil said, “Anubis, don’t give them what they want and definitely don’t trust them. Ow!”

“Jamil,” Anubis shouted.

“No more. I’ll text you an address. You’re to drop the book there. Once I’m assured you haven’t tricked us, I’ll text you an address where you can pick him up.”

Anubis growled. “I don’t think so. Once you have the book, you have no reason to keep him alive. You’ll make sure he’s there and after I drop the package off, you’ll send him out to me. He better not have any injuries either—or I’ll hunt you down. I have all the time in the world while your life is finite.”

“Fine. We’ll do it your way.” The man hung up.

After stuffing his phone away, Anubis stared at his brothers. “Who here believes he’ll do what he said?”

No one answered and he nodded.

One Response “”

  1. josexpressions says:

    Thanks, T.A.!

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