Bound to Darkness(Midnight Breed,book 13)(58) by Lara Adrian
“Listen, no one wants this to end badly for him,” Gideon said. “Not even your father.”
“I hope you’re right.” She sucked in a breath as the sound of subdued female voices and approaching footsteps on soft wool rugs carried from around the corner of the passage up ahead. “Shit. Someone’s coming.”
She went still and silent, keeping herself close to the wall as a pair of housekeepers carrying armfuls of used linens to the laundry room rounded the bend and walked right past her, unaware. As soon as they were gone, Carys beelined for the east wing.
Tall double doors sealed off the expansive wing from the guest rooms and the rest of the second floor. She tried the handles and found them locked. A concentrated mental command was all it took to open them.
Slipping inside the vacant, dimly lit chamber, Carys closed the door behind her, then let her concealing shadows drop away.
“I’m in,” she advised Gideon.
Ambient light from a handful of wall sconces bathed the enormous space in a warm glow. The large study contained a desk and credenza, with a seating area off to the side. Carys drifted inside, past the sumptuous leather club chairs and Chesterfield sofa that sat before a massive fireplace.
Other rooms branched off the main suite. A conference room with chairs for a dozen people. A huge library with towering bookcases and an elegant reading nook. Even an exercise room filled with gleaming equipment and floor-to-ceiling mirrors on the walls.
Carys headed straight for the councilman’s work area. “There’s a tablet on the desk,” she informed Gideon in a whisper as she opened the computer and woke it from sleep mode. “Dammit. It’s password-protected.”
“No problem,” Gideon replied. “I can get in later. That’s why you have the bugs.”
She reached into her pantsuit pocket to retrieve one of the wafer-thin, clear strips of technology Gideon had given her. Peeling off the backing, she stuck the bug on the underside of Fielding’s tablet. Once applied, the covert device all but disappeared against the metal casing.
“Done,” she said. “Checking paper files now.”
She mentally unlocked the credenza and began sifting through the files and folders inside. “I see some GNC contracts in here, three months’ of meeting minutes, committee membership lists . . .”
Her voice trailed off as she scanned the documents for names, appointment references—anything that might prove helpful to the Order in establishing the councilman’s activities and interests. Not to mention any associations that might give off a whiff of corruption.
Gideon’s voice sounded in her ear as she committed page after page to memory. “Better make it quick, Carys. We need to get the rest of those bugs planted in the other rooms in that suite. To play it safe, you can’t afford to be gone more than a few minutes.”
“Right.” She closed the file drawer and hurried to complete the rest of her assignment. With most of them placed in the meeting rooms and other antechambers, she stepped inside the exercise room. “Just one bug left. You want it on the treadmill or the ski simulator? I doubt Fielding gives either one much action.”
Gideon chuckled. “Take your pick.”
She looked for something that might get the most use. Something the human male might keep nearby if he was in the room. “How about the TV remote?”
“Perfect,” Gideon said. “Stick it and get the hell out of there.”
She flipped the small remote over and had just applied the bug when something odd caught her eye. She paused, watching the tiny red light from the remote reflect on one of the mirrored panels on the back wall.
Except it didn’t quite reflect . . .
No, it seemed to shoot right through the glass.
“Huh. That’s strange.”
“Talk to me, Carys. What’s going on?”
“I’m not sure,” she murmured, setting the remote down and walking over to have a closer look. “I think there’s something behind the glass . . .”
She reached up and felt around the edges of the panel. Her fingertips grazed a small bump along the right side—a button. She pressed it, and the mirror popped open.
“Oh, my God. There’s another room back here.”
Not much of a room. Nothing like the spacious, opulent chambers of the suite outside. This was more of a deep, hidden alcove.
Peering into the darkness, she saw a simple desk containing a computer workstation with a large monitor. If Neville Fielding had secrets, this was obviously where they’d find them.
“I’m going in.” She stepped over the threshold.
“Carys, for fuck’s sake, just be caref—”
“Gideon?” she whispered as she crept farther inside. “Gideon, are you there?”
Shit. Only silence answered. Their signal must have cut off, she guessed, taking in the soundproofed walls and ceiling that surrounded her.
She padded over to the desk. The computer on it was powered down, but still warm. Beside it was some kind of communications system.
What the hell was Fielding using this for? Who did he talk to on this secret workstation, hidden behind a concealed door in a house that only a man with ten times his wealth could possibly afford?
There was only one answer, of course. One explanation.
Dammit. She had to go back out and try to retrieve one of the bugs she’d placed elsewhere. This was the room the Order needed to monitor.
She spun around and started hurrying back toward the hidden door.
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