Chapter 63

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The flickering black and white screen shows a block of armed cupids marching forward across the grounds

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The flickering black and white screen shows a block of armed cupids marching forward across the grounds.

I spin around, my mouth dry, to the barred window behind me.

They're approaching – a steady mass of white suits. Their bows are raised and as they get closer their stomping feet begin to resound around the study.

Cupid and Cal rush to either side of me and we stare out in silence for a few moments.

"Oh my god" I whisper again.

"Guys," says Charlie shakily "there's more – they're surrounding the house."

The three of us turn to face her. She is still staring at the monitors – her brown eyes wide. Similar blocks of agents have appeared on another two of the screens. As they reach the grounds they begin to disperse – forming a perfect circle around the building.

I look up at Cupid who takes a deep breath, his broad chest rising and falling beneath his still damp cotton T-Shirt. He catches my gaze and nods.

"Well" he says "this is it."

He gives a sideways look at Cal who stares at the screens – his silvery eyes focussed. He looks uncomfortable.

Outside there is a movement as one of the cupids at the front of the procession produces a megaphone from under his jacket.

"On the orders of Venus, you are under arrest." Comes a booming male voice "You are surrounded. Please exit the building with your hands raised above your heads."

I look between the two brothers.

"Now what?" I whisper "They can't get in can they?"

Cupid shakes his head and falls back down into the leather recliner.

"Now we wait..." he says.

He looks at me darkly.

"...for as long as we can."

***

Around an hour passes.

The agents from the Matchmaking Service still surround the building. At regular intervals the booming voice resounds around the house telling us to go outside. Each time it does my whole being is filled with dread.

Cupid, however, seems unperturbed. He is leant back in the recliner – his eyes closed.

Charlie and I sit in the office chair, staring blankly at the screens.

My stomach is turning anxiously.

Across the study Cal paces back and forth – his bow slung over his shoulder.

"Will you desist brother" says Cupid after a while – his eyes still closed "You're making me nervous."

After a few more laps of the room Cal shakes his head and walks to the exit. As he does Cupid's eyes flicker open – he watches him go with a frown on his face.

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