Home > Don't Play With Odin (Trouble for Hire #2)(9)

Don't Play With Odin (Trouble for Hire #2)(9)
Author: Cynthia Eden

She swallowed. “Right. Ah…thanks, again.” She turned away. Hurried in those cute canvas sneakers toward her bedroom. When the door shut behind her with a soft click, Odin realized he’d been holding his breath.

He released it in a slow rush.

What in the hell am I doing?

***

She wasn’t sure what woke her. One minute, Maisey had been in a deep sleep. Maybe having a slightly sexual dream about a big, blond Viking type who stared at her with smoldering blue eyes as he pulled her close—

But then she was jerking awake and her heart was about to burst from her chest and Maisey opened her mouth to scream because something was wrong and her instincts were going crazy and—

“Don’t make a sound.”

Her head whipped to the right.

A big, menacing shadow loomed beside her bed.

Screw not making a sound. She sucked in a breath and prepared to give the biggest scream of her life.

 

 

Chapter Three


“Maisey. It’s me.” He sat on the edge of the bed.

Odin.

The big, menacing shadow was Odin. Of course, it was. And those were Odin’s slightly callused fingertips closing around her wrist.

But why was Odin in her bedroom? On her bed?

“We’ve got a situation.”

They did? She focused on breathing. Big, heaving breaths as her heart galloped in her chest.

“Our perp is on the move.”

Her gaze cut to the bedside table. The glowing numbers on her clock told her it was 1:47 a.m. An odd time for her neighbor to be taking a drive.

“He just loaded up the back of his car with one big-ass duffel bag.”

“OhmyGod.” Now her hand twisted so that she was the one holding onto him. “The kind of bag that you use to hide a body?” she whispered.

“Okay, so, when I said don’t make a sound, I really just meant don’t scream. You don’t have to whisper. It’s just us.”

Maisey cleared her throat and repeated, “The kind of bag that you use to hide a body?”

“Or the kind of bag you use when you’ve just packed up all of your shit because you know that you’re suspected of a serious crime and you want to make a run for it.”

Yes, fine, that, too.

“I’m going over there,” Odin announced. He stood. Pulled his hand from hers. “I just didn’t want you to wake up and find me gone. Didn’t want you, ah, worrying or something.”

She jumped out of bed, too. “You mean we’re going over there.” Her t-shirt brushed over her thighs. “Just let me get some pants.” Pants. Shoes. Maybe a weapon. No, definitely a weapon. She tried to spring past him and rush toward her closet. She kept a baseball bat at the ready in there.

His arm curled around her and pulled her back against him. “Oh, fuck.” He let her go as if he’d been burned. “You’re not wearing a bra.”

“No, I’m not. I’m wearing a t-shirt and panties because I was sleeping and I like to be comfortable while I sleep and—”

“Fuck,” he said again.

“Give me two minutes, and I’ll be dressed.” Once more, she sprang for the closet.

“You’re staying here. If he’s a killer, then I don’t want you in his line of sight. I just wanted you to know where I was going.”

He was benching her? She’d just flipped on the light in her closet.

“Turn the light off,” Odin ordered. “We don’t want him knowing we’re awake over here.”

She flipped the light right back off.

“Lock the front door behind me. I have to go, now. He went back into his house, probably to grab more belongings, and I need to get over there before our guy races away.”

Odin’s shadowy form was moving for her bedroom door. Maisey bounded after him. She bounded so fast that she bumped into his back.

“Panties,” he growled.

“Um, what about them?” She was wearing them. She’d assured him of that already.

He didn’t speak. Just stalked through her house in the darkness and didn’t even stumble. Meanwhile, she was clinging tightly to the back of his t-shirt and trying not to trip with every step.

“Bet they are sexy as fuck,” Odin finally muttered.

Her cheeks flushed. Her panties were so not. They were white and plain, but she made a mental note to purchase some sexy underwear. Especially if Odin was going to be all curious about them.

She heard the faint sound of an engine. “He’s trying to get away!”

“The hell he is.” Odin yanked open the front door and rushed into the night.

***

The car had just whipped into the road. A sporty red Mustang. Odin realized the headlights were off. Just another mark against old Clay Prescott. Because who the hell drove away in the middle of the night with the headlights off?

The bad guy, that was who.

Odin thought he’d have to give chase, and he was already preparing to hop in his Jeep—a recent purchase that he’d gotten for a steal after the big case with War’s lady—but then Clay braked his car. He jumped out. Ran back to the house.

Seriously? He’d forgotten something else?

And the dick had just left his car idling in the street.

Fine. If he wanted to make things easy on Odin, that was cool.

Odin hurried toward the vehicle. The dumbass had left the keys in the ignition. Odin glanced toward the front of Clay’s house, then helped himself to those keys. The car’s engine fell silent, and the quiet on the street felt deafening.

Odin took the keys around to the trunk. Pushed the trunk release lever and had the back swinging up. He stared at the giant duffel bag and remembered Maisey’s words.

The kind of bag that you use to hide a body?

The bag was certainly lumpy in the way that could indicate a body was inside. The left side even appeared to be round like…like maybe with the shape of a head. Hell, he really did not want to find a dead body in that bag.

But he had to look and see.

He leaned forward and tugged down the zipper. The round object rolled right out—

“What in the hell are you doing?” Clay Prescott called.

More round objects rolled out and slid around the trunk. Basketballs. The duffel bag had been full of freaking basketballs.

“You left your car running in the middle of the night.” Odin’s fingers curled around the keys he held. “I was worried. Especially when I saw the trunk was open and you were nowhere to be seen.”

“The trunk was open?” Clay ducked his head to peer inside. “Dammit, the balls fell out again.” He scrambled to push them back into the bag.

Odin slid to the right. He saw that Clay had what looked like whistles hanging out of the right pocket of his jogging pants. “Going to coach a game?” he asked, voice mild. At almost two a.m.?

“I volunteer at the community center. The kids have a practice at seven in the morning, but I have a flight I have to catch at four. The assistant coach is going to cover for me.” He zipped up the bag. “I realized I had all the equipment, so I was going to drop it off.” Clay shoved back from the vehicle. “Are those my keys you’re holding?”

“Took them out when I realized the car was on, but no one was inside.” Odin tossed the key fob back to Clay. “Going out of town, huh? Where are you heading?”

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