Chapter 7

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I exhale heavily - my eyes flicking over Cal's angular face and settling on Crystal's triumphant blue irises. There's a half smile on her face as she stands by the entrance of the dimly lit hall, her arrow pointed at my chest.

"Thank you for leading us here, my love," she says. She looks over my shoulder at Jekyll behind the reception desk then back at me, "I'd say we can take it from here but it seems you have a decision to make, a side to choose; the cupids, or whatever this place stands for."

My eye twitches with a spurt of irritation.

Bloody cupids. Always running head first into things.

I could have got my answers.

I force a smile.

"It seems so," I say.

I glance quickly over my shoulder at Jekyll. She's watching the scene unfold with a bored look on her face. She seems human - and thus she should be afraid that two powerful cupids are pointing weapons at her - yet she is perfectly calm. I turn back to Cal and Crystal.

"Get rid of the cupids," Jekyll repeats. "Come find me when you're done. I'll send someone to clean up the mess."

I hear the rustling of skirts behind me as she turns to walk out of the door behind reception. Cal moves instantly, releasing a black arrow in her direction. Out of instinct I snatch it out of the air as it flies over my shoulder, crumbling it to ash between my fingers.

Cal's eyes flash an irritable silver. He draws another arrow from his quiver and points it at me. The moonlight from the open door gives him an ethereal glow, reflecting off his blonde hair and pale face.

I look at Crystal again. A flash of disappointment crosses her face. In her eyes I've made my decision.

"So, that's how it will be?" she says. "You're going to get rid of us for your new friend?"

She raises her bow and I look pointedly at the arrow.

"You're giving me very little choice here, my love."

I see a glint of hurt cross her face.

"I stood up for you. Have you been working for them all along?"

I lift up my arms in surrender

"Look, did you ever think..."

An arrow from Cal's bow suddenly flies towards me - cutting my words short. I dodge it as another comes my way. I catch it inches away from my face. We're paused mid-action for a moment - a peculiar freezeframe; Cal in his white Victorian gentleman's suit and Crystal in her blue gown, both with bows raised and fire in their eyes.

"I don't know whether or not you're the Ripper," says Cal. "But this isn't right."

He looks pointedly around the circular entrance hall - his silver eyes skimming over the spear above the reception desk, the statue in the room past it, and the black and white chequered floor tiles.

"And you clearly have something to do with it. We're bringing you in."

Cal shoots a sideways look at Crystal. She sighs then gives him a subtle half nod.

Then they charge towards me.

Cal gets to me first, his pale face an image of fury. I throw him out of the way. He flies through the air landing against the far wall. As he crumples Crystal appears in my vision and jams her bow upwards - knocking my head back. I stumble a few steps as she throws her body towards mine. I bend down and she rolls over my back, landing on her feet behind me.

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