Chapter 53: One Way Or Another

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A part of her was somewhat paranoid that this odd fashion statement - what, with the suspiciously spaced gaps running parallel to her spine, leaving parts of her back visibly exposed - would draw unwanted attention, but such a concern was easily overlooked when she saw the air puffing out of her own mouth, a curl of steam rising up before her face. Warmth was prioritised over fashion at this moment, she conceded.

The others were similarly dressed, with Kiley wrapped up in a thick, woollen cardigan that reached down to her knees, whilst Colt was donning a black hooded jacket over a similarly coloured long-sleeved shirt.

One thing that hadn't skipped her notice was how well he had healed... Only two days had passed since his run in with David - whoever that jerk really was - and already the gash on his forehead had sealed up, the bruising across his jaw had faded out to nothing. Even the skin across the back of his hand had no obvious sign of recent injury.

Jackson, who'd still had tell-tale discolouration along his cheekbone, despite having faired better in the fight, had been pressing him for answers on how he'd healed so fast.

Colt had merely shrugged, claiming it must be part of his mutation.

Even Quentin had been dubious about such an unrevealing response, but they all left it at that.

'Do you think he'll agree to talk to us?' Kiley murmured as the three of them stepped up onto the railed porch.

'One way to find out.'

Colt pressed the doorbell.

There was a minute of near-complete silence, and he nearly reached up to press it again when, suddenly, the door swung open.

'I don't want any!' a voice grumbled angrily, and all three of them jumped back in mild surprise to see a man approaching his elderly years standing in the doorway.

He was rather tall and feeble, with dark, brooding eyes, chopped, greying hair and odd, blistering scars running down from his left cheekbone, across the side of his neck, to disappear beneath his collar.

Burns, perhaps? Ryn pondered.

But that was hardly the source of their shock. No, that would have to owe to the fact that one of his fists curled tightly around the leash of a large, rather brutish-looking dog, with fur resembling the colour of wet wood, and a set of jaws that could quite easily swallow any one of them, whole.

It growled at the three of them, in warning.

Ryn wasn't normally afraid of dogs, but this one seemed just a bit to eager to rip their throats out for her liking. Or perhaps it was the notion that the man holding its leash could very well be the Silver Scorpion that had them all on edge...

Colt was the first to recover from his initial shock, taking a bold step forward.

'We're not trying to sell you anything,' he spoke carefully. 'We just want to talk.'

'I'm not interested in holding a conversation. So, you kids had best be on your way.' He reached to slam the door in his wake.

'Wait!'

The man sighed at Colt's exclamation, but he kept the door open.

Before he could change his mind, Colt launched into the spiel Darcy had orchestrated for them all, last night.

'Mr Allen?' At the man's guarded nod, he continued. 'My name is Henry Carter, these are my partners, Emily and Kate,' he gestured to Ryn and Kiley respectively. 'We're all students at The Lights University. Part of our business degree involves a group project based on past and present experiences in the workplace, and our group was lucky enough to land with Scorp Tech as our study of focus.'

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