Anubis

Anubis

 

Anubis copyright c. 2015 T.A. Chase

Part Twenty-

“I need to get supplies,” he murmured against Jamil’s throat before nibbling a little.

“Oh okay,” Jamil stuttered, his breath hitching slightly when Anubis licked a line down to his nipple and placed a quick bite to the pebbled flesh.

He climbed off the bed and strolled to the bathroom where his shaving kit was. After digging through it, he grabbed the bottle of lube and the strip of condoms he’d stuck in there. Not that he thought he would get lucky when he packed, but it didn’t hurt to be prepared.

He stalked back and froze in his tracks. Jamil knelt in the middle of the bed, one hand braced on the headboard while he worked his fingers in and out of his ass. Anubis moaned as he approached.

“You could’ve waited until I brought the lube,” he said as he rejoined Jamil.

Jamil looked over his shoulder, licking his lips as his gaze trailed over Anubis’s body. “I didn’t want to. I want you in me as soon as possible. It’s all I’ve been thinking about since we met.”

Somehow Anubis doubted that, but it was nice to hear even if it wasn’t true. He pushed Jamil’s hand away. “Let me.”

After popping open the cap, he squirted some slick on his hand. He set the bottle to the side then eased two of his fingers into Jamil. He watched as Jamil let his head drop forward to rest his chin on his chest. Anubis stroked in and out while caressing Jamil’s lower back.

“You’re quite beautiful,” he whispered as the muscles under his hand flexed and relaxed while Jamil impaled himself on Anubis’s fingers. Jamil’s body took Anubis in as though his touch was as familiar to it as the air in its lungs.

Anubis’s breathing stalled for a second when his wandering hand found a birthmark on Jamil’s right hip. He didn’t stop stretching and preparing Jamil, but he let his attention move from Jamil’s ass to the mark upon his skin.

What sort of torture is this? You are a cruel god. Anubis thought to his patron god when he saw that Jamil’s mark looked exactly like the one Okilma had at the exact same spot on his hip. He tried not to think about what that might mean.

::Souls are reborn every moment.:: Sekhmet’s voice echoed through his head.

Mentally shaking his head, Anubis sent back one statement. ::Not now.::

Leaning down, he brushed a kiss over the spot then drew his focus away from the disturbing discovery. He would think about that later when the night was dark and he couldn’t find solace in sleep.

“Ahmed, I need more,” Jamil begged, tossing a pleading glance over his shoulder at Anubis. “Please.”

Anubis patted Jamil’s cheek before easing his fingers from Jamil’s ass. “I know exactly what you need.”

Wasting no time, he unwrapped a condom and slid it on his cock. The lube was where he’d dropped it, so after coating himself, he settled behind Jamil. He positioned the head of his shaft at Jamil’s opening then slowly began to push in.

It was as though the entire world held its breath while he buried himself as deep as he could in Jamil. When he finally couldn’t go any further, Anubis curled over his lover and exhaled. Jamil shuddered as Anubis’s warm breath washed over him.

“Are you all right?” Anubis wasn’t about to move until Jamil told him it was okay.

Jamil trembled and slowly relaxed under Anubis. He reached back to pat Anubis’s hip. “I’m fine. You’re a little bigger than my last lover, so it just took me a second.”

A surge of pride shot through Anubis and he gave a silent snort. Foolish to feel proud that I’m bigger than some unknown guy. Idiot. He slid almost all the way out then plunged back in. Jamil cried out, but he didn’t try to get away from Anubis. In fact, he rocked back into each hard thrust. Soon Anubis’s thoughts were only centered on the man he fucked and how marvelous it felt to have him wrapped around Anubis’s cock.

“Ahmed,” Jamil whimpered and Anubis could hear the need in his voice.

Smiling, Anubis took Jamil’s cock in hand and started stroking in counterpoint to his own movements. Jamil jerked at the rough handling then rested his head on Anubis’s shoulder so Anubis could look down the length of his chest to see his long fingers encircling Jamil’s shaft.

He tried not to think of how similar their postures were to all those times he and Okilma had been together. His prince loved to be taken, to give over all control to his personal bodyguard. So many nights they’d lie in an exhausted embrace after a frantic coupling.

“Oh God, Ahmed.” Jamil tensed, his inner passage tightening around Anubis like a vise.

Anubis grunted then came at the same time as Jamil did, covering Anubis’s fingers and wrist along with the pillow underneath them. They jerked and shivered together until it seemed like the last drop had been drained.

Jamil collapsed and Anubis followed him down. He pressed a kiss to Jamil’s shoulder while he caught his breath. Once he was certain he could move without crumpling to the floor, he slipped from Jamil then made his way to the bathroom where he cleaned up.

“How are you?” He returned to find Jamil hadn’t moved from where he’d fallen.

“Mrphm,” Jamil said into the pillow.

“What?” Anubis chuckled. “You’re going to have to roll over so I can wipe you off.”

Jamil huffed but did as Anubis said. He flopped onto his back, letting his arm cover his eyes. Anubis washed him off then tossed the cloth and the soiled pillow toward the bathroom. He climbed in, resting his head on Jamil’s shoulder.

“Have you always had that mark on your hip?” He had to ask, though he didn’t really want to know the answer.

“Hm-m-m…” Jamil shifted and Anubis could tell he was looking down at his hip. “Yeah. Kind of weird, isn’t it?”

Anubis traced the edges of the jackal-shaped birthmark. He wanted to kiss it, but figured Jamil would think it was odd. Okilma had the same shaped mark on his right hip. It was the sign of Anubis’s favor and how Okilma had become prince. What did it mean that the man who was excavating Okilma’s home would bear the same birthmark as the prince who ruled there?

“It’s interesting. Not weird. Do you know that for the society that those canopic jars belonged to, the jackal was the symbol of the ruling family?” He spoke in a low murmur, lost in his memories of Okilma’s smile and laughter. The smell of the sweat on his skin. The sound of his voice as he called Anubis’s name.

Anubis

Anubis

 

Anubis copyright c. 2015 T.A. Chase (very short installment, but I wanted to get you something…lol)

Part Nineteen-

“I think we need to find the bed,” Jamil mumbled.

Anubis didn’t speak, but he started edging them in the direction of the bedroom. He wasn’t interested in talking. All he wanted right at that moment was Jamil under him, calling his name as he came. He didn’t want to think about how he shouldn’t be doing this. How the mission was more important than him getting laid. His body was overruling his mind and it needed Jamil naked.

When they reached the side of the bed, Anubis broke their kiss then fumbled with Jamil’s belt. He cursed and Jamil laughed.

“We should just get ourselves naked this time,” Jamil suggested. “My hands are shaking too much for me to try and remember how to undo buttons and zippers.”

“You’re right.” Anubis took a step back, giving himself space to strip off his own shirt then work on his jeans. He started to push them down when he realized he still had his boots on. Swearing under his breath, he dropped to the edge of the mattress to struggle with the laces.

Jamil chuckled as he did the same thing, but since he’d already lost his shirt while they were in the other room, he was done before Anubis. After kneeling, he made short work of Anubis’s boots then surged up to push him over onto his back.

Groaning, Anubis gripped Jamil’s hips when the man straddled his waist. His erection throbbed and he shuddered at the thought of being buried deep inside Jamil. Anubis slid his hands down to hold Jamil’s ass then spread his cheeks apart so he could rub his thumb over Jamil’s puckered hole.

Jamil whimpered and rocked back, but Anubis wasn’t about to do anything without lube. He rolled them over, bracing his hands on the blankets to each side of Jamil’s head. Crushing their mouths together, he bit Jamil’s bottom lip then sucked on it to ease the sting.

Catching a new wind…

I’m still not up to speed on my writing, but I’m getting there. I’m doing some work on Anubis, so there will be a new installment on Wednesday. Yay! :) And hopefully one on Thursday as well.

I wanted to give you all an update because I know you’re eagerly awaiting the next one. It will happen, I promise.

New cover…

ScarecrowsDevils

 

 

This is the cover for my next release, Scarecrows and Devils, which is part of the 77th Precinct PAX at Amber Allure. All five of the stories will be out on May 24th. I really enjoyed writing this one, so I hope you enjoy reading it. :)

I’ve been having a lot of problems writing this month. Anubis is pretty much the only story I’ve worked on regularly since the beginning of April. Not sure why, but my muse isn’t talking to me as much as I’d like. So I’m behind on my first Merging Violently book, which is the spin-off series from my Home books. I need to buckle down and get it written, so unfortunately, I’m not going to be able to do any installments for Anubis this week. I’m hoping that once I get into the story, it’ll start flowing and I can get back to my regular routine.

Please bear with me while I work this writing problem out. I promise I’ll get back to posting stuff like I usually do.

Hugs and I hope you have a great week.

Anubis

Anubis

 

Anubis copyright c. 2015 T.A. Chase

Part Eighteen-

He could feel his lip curl up with disgust and frustration. ::I was thrown into this life we lead without any time to reconcile what I used to be with what I am now.::

::None of us had that chance.:: Isis reminded him.

::Then why are you telling me to harness my anger? Why shouldn’t I be angry?:: He dug his fingers into the seat under him.

Isis sighed. Anubis could hear the sadness and exhaustion that colored the sound. A little hint of guilt touched him, knowing that part of Isis’s exhaustion was because of him. Though he was pretty sure Sekhment had caused the sadness.

::Be as angry as you wish, Anubis, but don’t let it overwhelm you while you’re dealing with the situation. We still don’t know what’s going on there. When this is over, you can go out into the desert and scream all your rage out.::

“Are you sure you’re okay? You seem really tense.”

Jamil’s question caused him to jump again. Shit! He needed to keep his mind on Jamil and not what was going on in his head. Isis was right. Anubis needed to settle down. The situation was far more important than his anger at the moment. Hell, when he got back to Scotland, he could scream and throw as big a temper tantrum as he wanted. None of the others would make fun of him.

“I just need to eat something. Do you have plans for the evening or can I entice you into having dinner with me?” He interjected as much flirtation into his voice as he could.

::I guess that’s one way to take your mind off the problem.:: Thoth sounded amused.

::Shut up and go find your own entertainment for the night.::

The blush staining Jamil’s cheeks intrigued Anubis. He didn’t think the man was innocent or anything like that.

“Umm…dinner sounds great. Do you want to clean up before we go?”

Anubis wanted to chuckle, but he didn’t. “How about I make a reservation for us at the hotel restaurant? The food is pretty good there. You can clean up in my suite if you want.”

Maybe he was pushing it. They had just met the day before and Jamil might not want to move as fast, but Anubis could admit to himself that he didn’t want to be alone that night.

“I always keep a bag in the truck with a change of clothes, so that sounds like a plan to me.” Jamil grinned and reached over to pat Anubis’s knee.

“Great.” Taking a deep breath, Anubis forced himself to relax. He’d push his concerns about the jars to the back of his mind until the morning. That would be soon enough to work on it.

After pulling up to the front of the hotel, Anubis climbed out before grabbing his bag. Jamil walked around the truck to join him. Jamil handed the keys to the valet then they went on inside. Anubis led the way to the elevators.

“Will Hutchinson be joining us? I thought he was staying with you.” Jamil stood next to him in the elevator.

“No. He text me this afternoon and said he got his own room. Plus he found a friend to have dinner with.” Anubis had no doubt that Thoth would be able to do all that.

“Good.” Jamil blushed when Anubis gave him an amused glance. “Not that I don’t like Hutchinson, but…” His voice trailed off.

Anubis wanted to crowd Jamil into the corner then take his mouth in a hard kiss, but he knew he wouldn’t stop there. So he had to wait until they were in his room. He rested his hand at the small of Jamil’s back then leaned down to press his mouth against the man’s ear.

“I know what you mean. I don’t want him around either,” he whispered.

Jamil shivered, his hands opening and clenching on the straps of his bag. Anubis nibbled on Jamil’s earlobe, drawing a whimper from him. The ding of the elevator caused him to back away, but he encouraged Jamil to step out then directed him toward his suite.

“I got a suite while I’m here. I hate traveling and staying in cramped rooms.”

“Nice to have the money to do it,” Jamil muttered.

Shrugging, Anubis unlocked his door, gesturing for Jamil to go in. “That’s true. I’ve been able to make a great deal of money throughout my life and it offers me the opportunities to pamper myself.”

He shut the door behind him then set his bag down. Turning, he reached for Jamil’s duffel and took it. Once he set it on the floor next to his, Anubis slid his arms around Jamil’s waist and tugged him closer.

Jamil rested his hands on Anubis’s chest. “Shouldn’t we clean up? I thought you were hungry.”

“Oh I’m hungry all right, but at this moment, it’s not for food. I want you in my arms and bed,” he informed Jamil, trailing kisses along his jaw then bit his chin gently.

Wrapping his arms around Anubis’s shoulders, Jamil tilted his head back to give Anubis more skin to taste and suck. There was a little hint of dust mingling with sweat as he licked a line to the base of Jamil’s throat. He sucked up a mark there.

Anubis worked his hands to the hem of Jamil’s T-shirt before stepping back a little. He pulled the fabric up and over Jamil’s head, letting it drop before bending to press his tongue to one of Jamil’s nipples. He pinched the nub of flesh between his teeth and tugged on it.

“Oh my,” Jamil gasped, clasping the back of Anubis’s head while holding him in place.

He teased and played with it as he slipped his hands to grab Jamil’s ass, flexing his fingers into the tight muscles. His straightening brought a whine from Jamil, but Anubis smiled as he dragged their groins together. Their moans filled the air when their erections rubbed against each other.

Anubis

Anubis

 

Anubis copyright c. 2015 T.A. Chase

Part Seventeen-

Anubis’s head pounded as he climbed into Jamil’s truck. All day long, he’d had the feeling there was something he was supposed to be doing or somewhere else he was supposed to look, but he couldn’t get a clear enough image—or thought—of what it was.

::There are times when the gods chose to be ambiguous with what we need to know.:: Thoth’s voice entered his mind, but it soothed the ache in some small way.

::True. Then they become frustrated when we don’t move as fast as they think we should. What are we missing? Isis sent me here. He must have gotten some kind of urging from our creators. Yet all I have found is memories that I never wanted to relive.::

He could feel Thoth’s shrug before his brother spoke. ::I don’t know. Isis was tight lipped when he sent me, even when I tried to badger him into telling me.::

::Isis has developed a thick skin after dealing with us for centuries. Only Sekhmet can shake him now.:: Anubis rubbed his face then pinched the bridge of his nose.

“Are you okay?”

Jamil’s voice in the tight confines of the truck cab made him jump slightly. He’d been concentrating on Thoth, he’d forgotten about the man sitting next to him. He cleared his throat.

“I have a headache. Probably from all the dirt and dust I breathed in today. It’s been a long time since I’ve been out in the field. My lungs aren’t used to it yet.”

::It’s been over a century since you’ve been digging in the dirt. Remember when Tutankhamen was discovered. Thank God you were there.::

That had been a long expedition and dig. He and the others had exhausted themselves steering Howard Carter away from certain items buried with the boy Pharaoh. The warriors hadn’t been able to get to Tutankhamen before his tomb had been sealed to gather the religious artifacts the priests had given to the boy during his reign.

While Amun and Bastet had guided Carter to the main tomb, Anubis and the rest were busy secreting the icons and relics away to be taken to Scotland. Once there, they’d preformed the rituals needed to lock their powers, so no one would be able to use them again—or at least not without permission from the gods.

Unfortunately, there was nothing they could do about the curse a rogue priest had put on the tomb. It settled on the first group of people to have breathed in the stale air. Death followed in the wake of the discovery. It had been the most drained Anubis had felt in thousands of years.

::I hate to think this dig will be as bad as that one.:: He glanced over at Jamil. ::I hope there isn’t a curse on this place.::

::If there had been, it would’ve stuck those who discovered Petra, not Jamil and his crew. What bothers me is that this place wasn’t on our radar until they discovered those jars. Have they done x-rays on them to see if there is anything in there except mummified organs?::

::I don’t know. I forgot to ask. I was too upset yesterday when I figured out who the jars belonged to. Asking wasn’t the first thing on my mind.::

Thoth’s wave of sympathy eased Anubis’s headache even more. As annoying as he could be at times, Thoth did care for his brothers and it helped Anubis to know Thoth understood what he was feeling about this whole mission.

“Jamil?”

“Yes?” Jamil didn’t take his gaze off the road.

“Have you x-rayed the jars yet? To see if there is anything else in there beside the organs?” He clenched his hands as a sharp pain tore through his head. They had to be on the right track if he was getting shocks like that. Anubis—the god—wasn’t known for being subtle.

Frowning, Jamil shook his head. “Do you think we should? It didn’t sound like there was anything in them. Not that we shook them or anything, but we should’ve been able to hear some kind of movement.”

“Not if they were packed with something,” he muttered.

::They could be hiding something. Maybe the princess and prince’s organs aren’t in them. It could’ve been a way to keep people from stealing it—whatever it is.:: Thoth sighed. ::I’ll talk to Isis then get back to you about what we need to do.::

Anubis grunted and Jamil shot him a quick glance.

“Are you sure you’re all right?”

“Yes, but we need to schedule a time to take the jars to be x-rayed. There’s something about them that’s making me uneasy. Over the years, I’ve learned to listen to my instincts.” He tapped his fingers on his thigh while he thought. “I know a professor at the university who would probably be able to get us in to use his machine. I could grease the wheels a little with a donation.”

Jamil chuckled. “What’s the hurry? Those jars have been buried for centuries. A day or two longer won’t hurt anything.”

He wanted to say that every delay was dangerous because they didn’t know what was hidden and who might want what was there. Now that the containers had been discovered, it was only a matter of time before the people who hid them would come for them.

Anubis was worried about that. Until he knew for sure what the objects were, he had no way of preparing to keep Jamil safe and the enemy from getting their hands on what they wanted. There was so much he still didn’t know about what was going on. All he wanted to do at the moment was scream in anger for being put in this position.

::Try to harness your anger, Anubis. It’s something you should’ve dealt with when you were first killed then turned into a warrior for the gods.:: Isis’s voice came through the fog of rage.

::No one ever gave me a chance to do so.::

TGIF

I swear this week has been overwhelming. I didn’t get the extra installment done like I wanted. I had two sets of edits to do, plus trying to figure out a book that’s due by the end of the month. :(

But at least it’s the weekend and while I still need to work on the book, I shouldn’t have any more edits to do. for a couple of days anyway…lol

I hope you all have a great weekend and I’ll try to do better  next week.

Anubis

Anubis

 

Anubis copyright c. 2015 T.A. Chase

Part Sixteen-

He gave the man a quick glance and Ahmed shook his head before walking off.

“What’s his problem?” Sandy asked as they watched him leave.

“I believe he feels very possessive of those caves,” Hutchinson said. “It comes from the fact that his tribe considers Petra as part of their territory, even though it’s theirs only in legends.”

“He doesn’t like the idea of us digging there,” Jamil inquired as he set his backpack down near the wall of the room then put his laptop away.

“His tribe sees those as their ancestors. Would you be happy about someone digging around in your grandfather’s grave?” Hutchinson lifted one shoulder.

Jamil frowned. “How are we supposed to learn anything about the past without searching those graves?”

Hutchinson patted his shoulder. “I see both sides of this situation and Ahmed will come around. He just needs time to adjust to the idea. To be honest, he’s never really been happy about digging the tombs in Egypt or anywhere else. He believes the dead deserve our respect.”

“Would he feels better if we made an offering to Anubis before we started digging in there? Not that he’ll still be around when we do,” Eesha suggested.

“It might help him. I think he feels an affinity to the god Anubis. Maybe he feels closer to the god of death and the underworld.” Hutchinson motioned toward the front of the Treasury where dim sunlight shone through. “Living in the desert can make you see spirits—or demons—in the heat waves and dust storms.”

Eesha nodded. “I understand that. My father came from one of the nomadic tribes and I spent some time with my grandparents during school breaks. I’ve seen ghosts dancing out on the dunes under the starlight. When I was young, I made offerings to the gods and goddesses because I never had any doubt they were real.”

Jamil tapped her arm. “You still feel that way.”

“Yes. I do, and every time we uncover something else from ancient times, I feel like they’re trying to talk to us.” She shrugged. “I make offerings to them at sunrise and sunset.”

“I’m sure they appreciate you remembering them,” Ahmed said as he approached them. “No matter where I am in the world, I make offers as well. My grandfather always said our tribe was descended from Anubis. Of course, I’m pretty sure he was lying, but on the off chance that he wasn’t, I don’t want my ancestor angry with me for forgetting him.”

They all laughed, though Jamil caught Ahmed giving Hutchinson a look that seemed to be warning him about something. He shook his head. Whatever was going on between them was none of his business.

“All right, everyone. We need to get started.” He pointed at Hutchinson. “Are you staying?”

Hutchinson gave an exaggerated shudder. “And get messy grubbing in the dirt? I don’t think so. That isn’t one of my many varied talents.”

“Being an ass is really all you’re good for,” Ahmed muttered. “Go back to the city. You’re staying with me then we’ll go to the museum in the morning, so you can look at the jars in person.”

Taking the key card Ahmed held out to him, Hutchinson grinned. “Yes, sir. I’m going to have some rooms service and charge it to your account.”

“I wouldn’t expect anything else.” Ahmed rolled his eyes.

Jamil watched them interact and he could see the friendship shining between them, even with all the sarcasm and picking. He sighed, wishing he’d have siblings to treat him like that. Yet he was sure that it would probably be annoying at times if he’d grown up with one.

“Get out of here. I’ll call you when we leave here and you can meet us for dinner.” Ahmed motioned toward the front of the Treasury.

“What makes you think I’m sticking around to have dinner with you? I’m going out and seeing what kind of nightlife I can find in the big city.” Hutchinson gave them all a jaunty wave before he left.

“Nice friend you have there,” Jamil said to Ahmed as he walked past him. “Do you want to work with me or one of the girls?”

Ahmed eyed him then turned to smile at Eesha. “I would like to start with Eesha. I thought maybe I’d work with the three of you—one at a time. I want to see how your techniques differ.”

He wasn’t going to think about how disappointed he was. It wasn’t like Ahmed wasn’t going to be working with him at some point during the day. Jamil nodded. “As long as Eesha is fine with it.”

“You are certainly welcome to work with me, Mr. Al Hazzan. We can exchange stories of growing up while wandering the desert.” Eesha grabbed Ahmed’s wrist then started tugging him along with her. “I’ll make sure he returns to you in one piece, Jamil.”

Jamil and Sandy shared a brief smile. Eesha had always come across as reserved around most people. She was a very private person, yet she seemed to have a connection with Ahmed that Jamil hadn’t seen her have with another person.

“Maybe it’s simply because they have lived in the desert,” he muttered. “They grew up on the same stories and legends. She must get lonely, hanging with people like us who don’t really know what it’s like to wander this place and be here at night.”

Sandy just grunted then headed out to her spot in a different area of the Treasury. Jamil dug out his gloves before checking to make sure he had all of his tools. It was going to be another long day, but he had a feeling that Ahmed’s presence would bring them good luck and they’d discover something new.

Anubis

Anubis

 

Anubis copyright c. 2015 T.A. Chase

Part Fifteen-

It was almost as though Ahmed spoke from experience. Jamil gave himself a mental shake. A lot of the scholars of ancient history spoke of the gods like they were real, but if they ever existed, they lost their power when people stopped believing in them.

“You sound as though you believe in them,” he commented, having an urge to know how Ahmed thought about everything and anything.

Ahmed chuckled. “Late at night, when I can see the stars in the dark sky, I do believe they are looking down on us. They might not have a hand in our day-to-day lives, but they are watching. I guess you can take the boy out of the desert, but you can’t take the desert out of the boy.”

Jamil tilted his head. “I can see that. We’re all shaped by what we experienced during our formative years. You were raised as a nomad and your life was controlled by the whims of nature. There are spirits in the sand and wind. Then we learn new things when we move away, but it doesn’t change our inner beliefs.”

“True.”

They fell silent as they wandered along the trail through the canyons leading to the city. Jamil let his mind go blank, absorbing the heat and the stillness of the area. Oh there were people all around him, tour groups heading to Petra, but their conversations were hushed as though they felt the weight of time pushing down on them.

As they approached the steps of the Treasury, Ahmed stiffened beside him and Jamil shot him a quick look. He noticed that Ahmed was staring straight ahead, so he turned and spotted a tall slender man standing at the entrance arches. Sandy and Eesha were talking with him.

“I wonder who that is,” Jamil murmured as they continued on.

“It’s Thomas Hutchinson,” Ahmed told him.

“Really? He told me he wouldn’t be here until tomorrow. Guess he got a earlier flight.” Jamil jogged up the steps. “Dr. Hutchinson, I’m Jamil Ahlid. I’m glad you could come.”

Hutchinson shook his hand then gave Ahmed a quick man-hug, thumping his shoulder with a heavy hand. “Ahmed, I appreciate you telling Ahlid here about me. Glad you’re willing to share the fame from finding this stuff.”

Ahmed grimaced, but simply replied, “I didn’t find this stuff, Thomas. Jamil did, so you should be thanking him for pulling you in. You’ll have to share whatever fame there is to come with him.”

“Of course.” Hutchinson flashed him a bright grin. “When do I get to look at the jars?”

“They’re already at the museum, but you can meet us there in the morning if you want.” Jamil set his pack down then pulled out his laptop. “I have pictures of the writing on here. Maybe you can do a quick translation then do a deeper one later.”

After straightening, he turned his computer on and adjusted the screen so that Hutchinson could see it. Ahmed had wandered over to talk with Sandy and Eesha. Jamil saw how the women seemed charmed by the man. A hint of jealousy swelled in him and he tried to tamp it down. After all, he was the one Ahmed had kissed.

I need to get over myself. It’s not like we’re a couple or anything. Jamil gave himself a mental slap upside the head.

“You don’t have to worry,” Hutchinson muttered, nudging him with his knee. “He’s not interested in those women. Hell…he hasn’t been interested in women since he was born, I bet.”

His cheeks heated and he ducked his head. “I don’t know what you’re talking about.”

“Of course you don’t.”

He heard the amusement in Hutchinson’s voice, but he wasn’t going to acknowledge what the man had said. “Here are the up close pictures. You can look at them out here. I’m heading to my unit.”

Hutchinson took the laptop and grinned, but didn’t stop him as he moved into the darkened interior. Ahmed returned to Hutchinson’s side and pointed something out on the screen to him. Eesha and Sandy joined Jamil, escorting him through the outer chambers while chattering on and on about Hutchinson.

“It was like he appeared out of nowhere. I was outside on the steps right before he showed up and I swear to God, he didn’t walk in. Not from where the main groups do.” Sandy shook her head.

Eesha laughed. “Maybe he repelled in from the top of the canyon like Spiderman or something.”

Jamil chuckled. “He does have the look of a superhero, doesn’t he?”

“They both do.”

At Sandy’s statement, they all turned around to look at the two men standing in the arched entryway of the Treasury. Hutchinson and Ahmed were the same height and had the same dark coloring. Jamil wouldn’t doubt that Hutchinson had Arab blood in his genes. Ahmed was slightly more muscular, which made him more attractive to Jamil.

They held themselves like warriors. They were talking about the jars, but Jamil could tell they were keeping an eye on everyone around them. When they finished talking, Hutchinson closed the computer then they strolled in Jamil’s direction.

The loud inhalation from both women shocked him out of staring at the men. He nudged his friends with his elbows before turning around to continue on to his unit. By the time he got there, Ahmed and Hutchinson had joined their group.

“From my brief perusal of the writing, I think Ahmed is right about it being the Princess and the young prince’s canopic jars. I definitely will take a closer look when I can see the real things, but you’ve made an amazing discovery, Dr. Ahlid.” Hutchinson handed Jamil his computer back.

“Thank you. We do think there might be more things to be dug up in that chamber and a few other rooms that we’ve been given access to.” Jamil rubbed his chin. “The government also gave us permission to go into some of the caves in the area. We think there might be some burials there.”

Ahmed hissed, startling Jamil.

Happy Friday

Sorry I haven’t posted anything in a few days. I plan on doing three installments for you next week. Got busy with other deadlines. :)

Have a great weekend.