Layla quirked her eyebrow when Mikhail told her that Marcus was here to see her. She also couldn’t help but notice the frowns on both of her faithful Russians’ faces. Regardless, she decided to ignore it and let them beckon Marcus in. Layla wouldn’t deny that her eyes racked over his muscular form as he entered the room. She also wouldn’t deny the slight excitement in her heart at the sight of him. Having Marcus over was always entertaining.
“Hello Marcus.” She smiled, moving across her desk to stand in front of it. “How can I be of assistance?”
He smirked, eyes wandering over her body like she had done to him earlier. “It’s actually kind of a funny story why I’m here.”
As he informed her of Arnold Winter’s intention, Layla’s amused expression shifted to that of caution.
“A cartridge?” She repeated in exasperation. “The man who wants me dead sent the man who is going to kill me to ask for my help.”
“Pretty much. Though, he actually wants me to ask if you did it. At least that’s what one of his council members said to do.”
“No, I didn’t take his silly cartridge. I wouldn’t even have any use for it.” She said with a shake of her head. Men!
“But do you know anything about it? Like, have you been to the place it had been kept or at least know someone who has?” Marcus sighed as he scratched the back of his neck. “I’m really getting tired of doing this shit for him.”
Layla curled a few strands of her hair around her finger as she looked Marcus up and down. She didn’t need to tell the Association anything. They very wholeheartedly wanted her dead so she didn’t owe them anything. Though, she partially did. Marcus was still standing in front of her, alive and well. He had told her of the many times the Association tried to get him to kill her and that he would make up an excuse to keep them both alive. As twisted as it was, Layla owed Marcus her life. But she didn’t want to help the Association in any way. Their beliefs are sick and their idea of a perfect Utopia was too idealistic and ambitious for her liking as well. But she would do this for Marcus. He’s already done so much for her. He’s one of the few people she tells the truth to.
“I was actually at the University of Mary Washington when the cartridge went missing. I was actually in the building when it happened. But I didn’t take it.”
“Why were you there?” He asked, brows furrowing in confusion.
“Nikolai had heard of a convention that was going on at the time. He wanted to see it.” She said through gritted teeth as she glared at the doors to her office which probably housed her two bodyguards on the other side. “Jim Groom had come down the steps of the building wondering where the cartridge was.”
“He is one of the professors who is working on the exhibit the Night Driver was housed in. He rattled off some strange poem that was was left to him in place of the cartridge. You should probably go talk to him.”
“Thanks, babe. I appreciate it.” He grinned as he backed towards the door.
“Oh and Marcus?”
“Be a dear and never ask me to help you with anything that has to do with the Association ever again.” She said rigidly.
“Trust me. I wasn’t planning on helping them do any of this shit again.” Marcus smirked.
“Just be careful.” Layla sighed.
“Love you too, babe.” He said as he exited the office.