Heart of Steel
Author: Meljean Brook
November 1, 2011
“You have no idea who you’re up against.” His gaze left Yasmeen and fell to the knife at the actress’s throat. His lips curled. “Do you think I care whether she dies? Go on, slit her –”
The crack of Yasmeen’s pistol cut off the rest. Mattson’s brains splattered against the foyer wall. His body dropped, gun clattering against the wood floor — and luckily, not discharging on impact.
Eyes wide, Zenobia lifted her bound hands and touched the blood sprayed across her cheek and temple. She startled from her stupor and almost tripped over Mattson’s boots when the actress suddenly shrieked, ducking and covering her ears. A bit late for that — though if she kept screaming, Yasmeen might shoot her just to shut her up.
She tucked the weapon back into her sash and crossed the room to nudge Mattson’s thigh with her toe. Dead. Yasmeen knew many people who seemed to function well without brains, but her bullet had definitely done this one in. Blood pooled beneath his head.
“A hell of a mess,” Yasmeen said, and slipped her blade between Zenobia’s wrists, slicing through the ties. She did the same to the woman’s gag. “If you need to vomit, I suggest you do it on him. There’s less to clean up.”
“Thank you,” Zenobia rasped. The corners of her mouth were raw. “But I don’t need to.”
Then she glanced down at Mattson’s face, bent over, and did.