Chapter 75

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The vast courtroom is completely silent

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The vast courtroom is completely silent. All I can hear is my heartbeat thumping in my ears. I twist against my bindings, looking at Cupid and Crystal for reassurance.

Cal said that the Myths would arrive as soon as the trial started.

Where are they?

Crystal's face has drained of colour, but a defiant smile curls on Cupid's face. His gaze doesn't move from Venus' face.

She stares at him for a moment, her doll like eyes unblinking, before looking past the three of us to the rows of Matchmaking Agents sat behind.

"We are here today to witness the trial of Cupid, my son, Crystal, the traitor, and Lila," she slides her gaze to me, her full red lips contorting into a grin "the match."

As her childish voice booms and echoes around the chambers, the cupids behind begin to stamp their feet against the ground – quietly at first, but then with increasing vigour. I feel a chill creep down my spine and my body feels suddenly weak; I'm sure that if my hands weren't bound above my head, my legs would give way.

Venus pauses. When the noise has faded, she picks up a white myrtle from the high desk in front of her.

"Should they be found guilty," she says, violently plucking off the flower's petals "they will be punished by death."

She opens her hand and the flower falls to the ground with a delicate scattering of white petals. The seated Matchmaking Agents begin to pound against the floor again, and the drummers surrounding the staged area we are imprisoned in begin to bang rhythmically on their drums.

My heart is racing.

Venus clicks her fingers.

"Charles, read out the charges."

The red headed PA scuttles forward and stands by her side. In his hand he clutches an electronic tablet which he looks down at. I notice a slight tremble in his hands.

"Cupid, charged with breaking the company policy," he begins.

The agent in front of us with the elaborate bow turns towards Cupid, pointing his weapon towards him.

The executioner.

I glance at Cupid. He raises an eyebrow at the menacing agent.

"Lila," says Charles.

My heart jumps into my throat as the executioner turns his bow towards me.

"Charged with being the match..."

"Hardly her fault" interrupts Cupid. "But rationality was never your strong suit was it mother...?"

Outrage flickers across Venus' face.

"SOMEONE DEAL WITH THIS INSOLENCE" she shrieks. "CAL?"

Suddenly a red tipped arrow sinks into Cupid's shoulder and he cries out. I twist against the post, the bindings pinching my skin, as his stifled grunts fill the air.

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