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Back in Nigel Lawson's designer décor living room, in front of the open stone fireplace near the coffee-colored circle settee, stands Nigel and Quinton.

Nigel begins to slowly pace and becomes increasingly angry. Raising his voice, he says, 'this has been a complete failure!'

'We're trying, Nigel.'

'Trying is not good enough! We cannot fail to retrieve her again!'

'I tried to warn you that you can't just kidnap a person, especially when it comes to Anne. I also warned you that hiring the vampire would be a mistake.'

'Arling and I came to an arrangement. I thought he would succeed the second time. Clearly, I overestimated him.'

'By attacking her?! How would that have helped us?'

'I don't care how he gets her as long as he does! However, trying to change her was not what we discussed.'

'You can't do that! And what of the teacher you assigned?'

'He grew a conscience before he even started.'

'And Henry Richmond?'

'I'm surrounded by cretins!'

'You must start listening to me, or he'll be imprisoned indefinitely.'

'You said we need the girl.'

'Yes, alive and unharmed. If Anne comes to any harm, it might compromise any chances we have to release Rozwin.'

'How do you expect we do that? She's not going to willingly help us.'

'Doesn't your son, Alex, attend the same Academy?'

'Yes, but he is incompetent. He's proven that he is unable to do the simplest of tasks, which was expected of him.'

'I have an idea that might work. I believe I may have a way for Anne to help us, and she doesn't have to be a willing participant.'

'What's your plan?'

'I need something we can present to her disguised as a gift.'

Nigel thinks for a moment before he crosses the room to a cabinet. He opens a drawer and removes an item. He returns to Quinton moments later holding a long, wide, silk black box. When Nigel opens it, Quinton discovers a silver charm bracelet with several different charms of a skull, snake, staff, half-moon, a gem, and a group of stars. One, in particular, that is larger than the rest, hangs in the centre with a silhouette of the upper body of a person holding a staff. Where a blank face should be, holds a faint picture of a skull giving it the presence of a reaper. Besides this figure stands three more but smaller human silhouettes. They also have skulls as faces.

Nigel continues. 'It was given to Petri when she graduated.'

'She won't mind us using it?'

'She'll understand. A piece of jewellery is worth the price.'

Quinton stares at it with a pleased look on his face. 'I think this might work. Do you have a knife?'

'What for?'

'Blood is needed.'

Nigel looks at him questionably but returns to the cabinet before handing Quinton a paper opener.

Nigel's still weary which can be heard in his voice. 'This should be sharp enough.'

'Hold this open.'

Nigel takes the box and holds it, making sure the lid stays open.

Quinton touches the bracelet whispering and muttering as he casts a spell. He takes the paper opener, cuts across his hand and lets his blood drip over the bracelet. It glows a bright silver.

Quinton turns to Nigel. 'Could you put your hand over the bracelet?'

Nigel sounds concerned. 'Why?'

'Your blood is also needed.'

After a few moments contemplating, Nigel hesitates but slowly outstretches his hand. Quinton holds the bracelet under Nigel's hand before he cuts him.

After Quinton collects enough of Nigel's blood, the bracelet glows a brighter silver then green, red and finally black, before returning to normal.

'Give this to your son, Nigel. Tell him to make sure that Anne wears this. I'll take it from there.'

'You want to trust this sort of task to my son?'

'He can do it. We have no other option.'

Nigel closes the box. With an uncertain expression, he walks out of the room.   

Anuanna: The Karda Jewel - Part IIWhere stories live. Discover now