Serafina turned on her heel and left the room, Tarian and Azalia following her like lost puppies. The double doors swung shut with a low crash.
“Why didn’t you tell him you think we’re not good enough to be assassins?” asked Azalia.
“Because I don’t think you’re not good enough, I just don’t think you’re cut out for it,” Serafina replied.
Serafina’s phone started vibrating against her leg. She pulled it out of the pocket above her knee. She answered it and brought it to her ear.
“Hello?” she said into the phone.
“Hey, how you getting on in London?” said the female voice on the other side. It was Ryann Garnett, the leader of the Edinburgh Guild.
“Oh, hey, Ryann. It’s all right, missing you lot though.”
“They’re amateurs aren’t they?”
“See, Sera, I can read your mind over the phone too,” she joked.
“As always, Ryann.”
“We’re all missing you, sweetheart. Especially Caradoc, he’s missing you more than anyone.”
“Ah, bless him, is he okay?” Serafina asked.
“Oh, sweetie, I need to go now.”
“Okay, bye, love you.”
“Love you too, bye.” And she hung up.
Ryann Garnett wasn’t Serafina Dagger’s mother, but she was the closest she had to one. Serafina’s parents had died when she was very young. Serafina Dagger wasn’t even her real name; her real name was Alexia Fife. She was four when her parents died, young enough not to be too bothered but old enough to remember them.
Her father had been Aidan Fife, author and dedicated father, Serafina had loved him. Her mother was Leda Fife, loving housewife and mother. She had loved them both so much. But when they died, she was adopted by Ryann Garnett, a tall young woman with an air of someone ancient and wise. From an early age, Serafina had been trained in combat and fencing.
Serafina put the phone back in her pocket and turned to Tarian and Azalia. She smiled at them and bid them good night. She went back to her small room and sat down on the bed. She thought about Caradoc, he was her best friend, her only proper friend.
He was the only one who could see past the arrogance and to the true person inside. And she loved him for it. He didn’t care about her overconfidence, or her flaws – such as her lack of respect for others and her ignorance of authority – all he cared about was what she was really like inside. She was a naturally argumentative person who liked reading and combative sports like fencing and kick-boxing. She was a very paranoid person, who carried daggers around with her everywhere; one strapped to her back, the other to her calf, which is where she got her name.
Caradoc on the other hand was the complete opposite. He was quite panicky in some situations and respected people who didn’t need his respect. He liked having someone telling him what to do because he could never make decisions of his own. He conceded in almost every single argument he was in and hated combat. He was very trusting and only carried one weapon at any time: a small knife tucked in its sheath hidden in his sock. The only trait they shared was their love of reading. Not that they had much time for it. Most of their time was taken up by phone calls or paperwork or the job itself.
Serafina undid her sword’s sheath from her belt and put it on the floor beside the bed. She lay down and thought of home. Only a week left in England then back home. She started singing quietly.
“O Flower of Scotland,
When will we see your like again?
That fought and died for
Your wee bit hill and glen.
And stood against him,
Proud Edward’s army,
And sent him homeward,
To think again,” she whispered quietly, her eyes closing and she drifted away into sleep, and dreams of battles and victory and her homeland.