The Immortal Who Loved Me(Argeneau, book 21)(7) by Lynsay Sands
“It’s not that I don’t want to call . . . I don’t have to,” she explained. “I already did. They’re sending Bricker even as we speak.” She tilted her head and then grinned and added, “And he’s bringing you a surprise.”
Basileios was already on his way up the hall when Marguerite made that announcement. Reaching her side, he glanced out at the SUV now parked in the driveway as the sound of a honking horn reached his ears. He glanced to Marguerite, his eyebrows rising at her concerned expression. “Problem?”
“It isn’t like Bricker to be so rude. He should have come to the door to get you,” she said with a frown.
Basileios smiled faintly as he gave her a quick hug. “He’s not picking me up for a date, Marguerite. He’s probably just in a hurry to collect Stephanie and her friend before Leo and his progeny find them.”
“Yes, I suppose,” she murmured, but he could tell from her expression that she was concerned about the young immortal and what this “rudeness” might mean.
Shaking his head, Basil gave her hand a squeeze and then turned to slip out of the house, assuring her, “It’s fine. I’ll call when we get them to the Enforcer house.”
Moving quickly, he made his way to the front passenger door of the SUV and slid in.
“I don’t know why I’m the one they’re sending to pick up Steph,” Bricker complained the moment the door opened. “Drina and Katricia should be doing it. They’re the ones who are supposed to be guarding her . . . and they’re right there in the area.”
As greetings went, that was pretty lame, Basileios decided, swallowing his own hello as he pulled the SUV’s door closed and grabbed the seat belt.
“And why the heck would they make me take you?” Justin continued with irritation. “You’re a lawyer for God’s sake, not a hunter. What good are you going to be if things get dicey?”
Basileios glanced up from fastening his seat belt, one eyebrow cocked. He didn’t know if Marguerite’s concern was warranted, but Justin Bricker was definitely in a mood. He didn’t know what had caused the man’s ire, but didn’t let it get to him. Voice mild, he said, “I was not always a lawyer, Justin. I was a warrior for more than a millennia. I’ve only been a lawyer the last twenty years. If the situation gets dicey—” He shrugged. “We’ll handle it.”
When Bricker merely scowled at the road ahead, Basileios added, “As for why we’re collecting the ladies, I gather Drina and my daughter were sent to clean up the situation at the store. It needed prompt attention to avoid exposure and they were the closest available team. Besides, there’s not much chance of things getting dicey. Apparently the danger has already passed. We’re just picking up the girls and taking them to the Enforcer house until Lucian decides how to handle the situation.”
“Yeah, babysitting duty once again,” Justin groused, and then glanced to him. “So, let me guess, Marguerite wanted you to come because Stephanie is your life mate?”
Basileios shook his head. “No, but she thinks that the mortal, Sherry may be.”
Justin’s eyebrows flew up. “That can’t be. Marguerite hasn’t met her,” he said, and then frowned and asked, “Has she?”
“Who can say with Marguerite?” Basileios asked with amusement. “She’s been doing a lot of shopping for her kitchen now that she enjoys food again, and I gather the woman in question owns a kitchenware store.” He smiled faintly and then added, “However, I was told that Stephanie has some skill in the life mate area as well, and she seems to think this mortal is mine.”
Bricker glanced around with surprise as he drove. “You’ve met Stephanie?”
“Yes,” Basileios answered, and then frowned and admitted, “Well, I did not actually meet her. We were not introduced, but I visited Katricia at the Enforcer house when the girls first arrived and we saw each other in passing. I presume someone told her who I was just as Katricia told me who she was.” Giving a helpless shrug, he admitted, “I am not sure how this identifying a life mate business works, but I presume that brief encounter was enough for her to read whatever it is she reads and decide that this Sherry woman would be a suitable life mate for me.”
“Well, hell,” Bricker muttered with disgust, hitting the brakes a little harder than necessary as they reached the corner.
The action sent Basil jerking forward until the seat belt caught him. He glanced at the younger man with a touch of exasperation. “Well hell, what?”
“Do you know how many life mates I’ve watched pair up the last couple of years?” Bricker asked grimly. “I don’t even know. There must be at least twenty, although I didn’t witness them all from the start. Christian and Caro hooked up in St. Lucia, but they’re here now, blissfully happy in their life mate relationship.” He grimaced. “I just wish Marguerite or Stephanie would take a minute and find me a life mate.”
Basileios relaxed and smiled with mild amusement. “You sound like a mortal child.”
“What?” he asked indignantly.
“Mortal children can’t wait until they’re old enough to drive, then to finish school, then to drink, etcetera,” he explained and then added gently, “You’re only just over a century old, Justin.”
“Yeah, yeah, and some of you guys have waited millennia so I should just be patient. It will happen when the time is right,” he mumbled with disgust, obviously having heard the lecture before.
Basileios didn’t comment. The man was impatient and bitter and nothing he said would change that. It was better just to let it go. He’d find his way . . . or not.
“How old are you anyway?” Justin asked suddenly. “You’re one of the older Argeneaus, aren’t you?”
“I was born in 1529 BC,” Basileios acknowledged quietly, and wasn’t surprised when Justin glanced at him sharply.
“But Lucian and Jean Claude were born in 1534 BC,” he said. “That means you’re only five years younger than them.”
Basileios nodded, unperturbed by the accusation in his voice.
“Hmmph,” Justin grunted, and then said bitterly, “I guess the hundred year rule doesn’t apply to you Argeneaus.”
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