Chapter 49

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Cupid bolts down the dusty aisles - making his way towards the stairway

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Cupid bolts down the dusty aisles - making his way towards the stairway.

I cast a glance back at Cal. He scoops up the leather bound book from the floor and shoves it under his arm.

He looks back at me, his silvery eyes wide.

"We need to get back." he says "For Crystal."

I nod.

As much as Cal appears to dislike the receptionist I can tell that he is afraid for her. For a moment I feel like I should say something comforting - but then he starts to move forwards and the moment is gone.

I turn away from him and sprint after Cupid.

We catch up with him in the main, domed archive area. He casts a glance at us both.

"Don't run any more." he says "It will look suspicious. Just walk. Fast"

Cal and I nod and fall into step beside him as he paces through the indoor courtyard, past the statue, and through the open plan office.

It's not until we reach the reception area that I notice it.

The silence.

Selena's music has stopped playing.

I urgently survey the room.

Crystal's replacement receptionist is no longer sat at the high stone desk. He is stood blocking our only exit from the Matchmaking Service - pointing a black arrow straight at us.

"Find everything you need?" he asks, arching a dark eyebrow.

He gives my match a steely look.

"You shouldn't be here." he adds sourly. "Cupid."

Suddenly Cupid pushes me to the side as the black arrow is released.  It plunges into his shoulder and he cries out in pain - staggering backwards.

Then the receptionist turns to Cal who has moved in between the two of us.

"I thought better of you." he says sternly "Though I've always said we should never trust his brother."

In front of me I notice Cal's shoulders tense up but he says nothing. 

"Who's the girl?" the new agent continues, looking past Cal at me "The match I presume?"

Before either of us can respond Cupid steps forwards, pulling out the black arrow with a grunt, and staring at the receptionist as it crumbles to ash between his fingers.He raises an eyebrow.

"You know you can't kill me with that." he says

He takes another steady step forwards as our attacker swiftly pulls out a new arrow. The receptionist immediately releases it and this one hits Cupid in the stomach. Cupid grunts again but continues to advance.

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