Mikhail whirled back around to face his boss. “What?”Is this fantasy or some sort of erotic action horror? No idea, because there's still no plot. Read part 2 here.
Cillian whistled, though to Mikhail’s ears it sounded mocking.
“After a day we called George Stamps himself,” Charlie continued. “He said you never showed up!”
“I did show up,” Mikhail protested. “I gave him the pitch, he asked me about development within the younger Seattle community, because his son lives there. I told him I’d ask you about it…” And then what? “I showed him the pitch, Charlie. He gave me his business card and wrote his private number on the back.” He dug into his wallet and held up the proof.
“Foul play, mayhap?” Cillian asked dryly. The office was silent.
Charlie snatched the business card from Mikhail’s hand, turning it over to see the elegant scrawled handwriting. “You did go.” Charlie gaped. “You really don’t know where you’ve been?”
This is neither the time nor the place, Mikhail wanted to say.
“I’m Cillian!” his visitant chimed in with false cheer. “I don’t know where I’ve been either, but that’s probably because I’m blind.”
Charlie visibly shook himself, but looked past the prodigal developer to the longhaired creature behind him. “Er—“
“Sorry,” Mikhail apologized. “He showed up this morning.”
“I don’t know the area, so I made him take me here.”
Mikhail smothered the urge to shake Cillian’s hand from his coat. “Charlie, I’m going to talk to the boys downstairs. Could Cillian stay at my desk for a bit?”
Charlie looked back and forth between the two men, one whose grin was the only part of his face visible under the honey-brown hair, the other whose mouth was set in a grim line. “Yeah, sure.”
“Thanks.” Leading him to the desk, Mikhail sat his charge in the chair. “It rolls,” he said in a low voice. “Don’t bother these people. They have work to do.”
Cillian snapped his teeth in response.
Mikhail almost ran down the hall, Charlie hot on his heels. “I can’t have been gone that long,” he said as he punched the elevator button. “That just doesn’t make sense.”
“I’m telling you, Mickey, we all thought you had skipped town,” his boss insisted.
This was crazy. Had that little monster been telling the truth? Should Mikhail have brought him along? “No one filed a Missing Persons Report?”
“Leona did, but she said that the police had a trace on your credit card being used in Canada. They were trying to track you down.” Charlie put his hand on the younger man’s shoulder. “Word has it that they even went to the foster homes to see if you’d contacted anyone from there.”
“I’m going to the police station,” Mikhail said firmly, hitting the button again. “Do I get my projects back?”
Chuck shifted uncomfortably. “We’d love to take you back, Mickey, we really would. But you were gone, and deadlines passed.”
A cold wave ran down Mikhail’s spine. “You hired someone.” Where was that damn elevator?
“Just the other day. He’s in training right now, but I’ll bet if you met him you’d like him. He’s a great guy, fresh from the city planning department of Buffalo. Real nice guy.”
Mikhail clenched his jaw. “He sounds like a peach,” he said tightly. “Give me his number so we can hang out some time.”
“Aw Mickey, you can’t really blame us. I mean, come on, it was two weeks!”
“No, I don’t blame you. I’m not blaming you. But I’m going to take that ass ache of a houseguest and leave. Do you have my stuff boxed up?”
Charlie looked away. “Er, some of the other guys were pretty upset with you…”
Turning on his heel, Mikhail strode back into the development office. “Say no more, Chief. Come on, Cillian.”
The honey blond held out his hand. “I need help,” he demanded in a singsong tone.
“Follow the fucking sound of my voice,” Mikhail snapped.
The office fell silent and Cillian grinned.
“See, now you have to guide me so that you don’t look like an ass,” he said triumphantly.
Mikhail grabbed the outstretched hand, resisting the urge to yank the other man off of his feet.
Neither said a word until they were out of the building. “What happened?” Cillian finally asked.
“What happened?” Mikhail repeated. “I don’t know.” His chest felt tight and his heart was beating too fast. He couldn’t breathe properly. “I don’t know.”
“You’re trembling,” Cillian said, concern coloring his voice for the first time. “Mikhail?”
The taller man gasped for air. The world was spinning. He felt as though his heart was going to pound through his chest. He was dying. His throat was closing and he would die there on the street with no one to look out for him but a blind, blood-sucking, delusional twink.