Walking into the biology lab, Beth laughed. She’d forgotten how funny Amelia was. A lot of the desks had been pushed into the centre of the room and the teacher stood there, holding a long snake. It was thick-bodied and muscular. When everyone was in the room, Mrs Lewis told them to stand in a circle around the tables.
Mrs Lewis started to talk about the snake, its origin, its behavioural patterns and adaptations, but Beth wasn’t listening to any of it; the snake was staring right at her, studying her with human understanding.
All of a sudden there was a screech and a large raven was hurtling through one of the open windows. Everybody jumped back as it landed on top of the snake, its talons curling around its body. The raven lost its grip and the snake changed into a bobcat before leaping down to the floor. The raven followed, and landed on the laminate as a panther. It growled, its black fur seeming a dark purple in the halogens.
The panther jumped the bobcat and the smaller cat hissed and lashed out, fighting valiantly despite its size. The bobcat hissed and the panther responded by clawing at the cat. The two fought in a blur of movement and growls. It wasn’t long before Robert and another woman appeared. Robert had her up against the wall, a black dagger at her throat. His expression was cold and emotionless but Beth knew it was just a front to hide his anger.
The woman had flaming red hair and her green eyes appeared to be shine like neon. Rosalyn. Robert whispered something to her and a sickly sweet smile formed on her lips and she batted her eyelashes before replying. The knife dug into her flesh, a trickle of blood running down her neck. Robert said something, with a little more force this time. Rosalyn seemed to realise just how angry he was. She nodded as best she could and disappeared like Isabella did. Robert turned around, leaning against the wall.
“Jesus Christ,” he muttered.
Beth went up to him, throwing her arms around him. He held her to him, the dagger disappearing into some hidden holster underneath his jacket. His fingers ran through her hair and he sighed.
“It would seem that you’ve been keeping us in the dark,” said Catalin from across the room with Alex stood beside her.
“No, you’ve been keeping out of it. You know how to contact me, Cat,” Robert said.
“And what exactly is going on then?” she asked.
Beth looked around the room, everybody was standing still, their eyes glazed over and their bodies seemingly limp when staying upright. No doubt another one of Robert’s tricks.
“Rosalyn has come for her revenge,” Robert said simply.
“Oh. And who’s on our side?”
“Isabella and Daniel are here.” On cue, a vulture landed on the windowsill and a bat landed beside it. “And I can call in Onyx if I need to.”