Something About You Page 50

Her eyes tried to adjust to the darkness, and she heard squeals of laughter and mixed voices coming from the VIP room. Despite that, the club seemed quiet. It took her a moment to realize the music had stopped.

“The power went out?” she asked Jack.

“Seems that way.” There was the sound of approaching footsteps and a creaking floorboard. Jack pulled her away from the wall. “Get behind me,” he ordered her. He turned, gun ready.

A shadow stood at the end of the hall.

Jack shifted, using his body as a shield to cover her.

“Jack—it’s me,” Wilkins said through the dark. “You two all right?”

Jack lowered his gun. He led Cameron out of the corridor, where the moonlight streamed through the windows and allowed her to see better.

“Is the power out in the entire place?” he asked.

“From what I can tell,” Wilkins said. His eyes fell on Cameron.

She had never seen Wilkins look so serious. That, more than anything, scared her.

“Do you think this has something to do with me?” she asked.

Neither of the men answered her. “Go check it out,” Jack told Wilkins. “I’ll stay with her. Call me on my cell when you know something.”

Wilkins nodded and took off.

Jack slipped his hand into Cameron’s. “Stay close to me.”

Her head was spinning with how fast everything had changed. She forced herself to stay calm.

“I’m taking you to a more secure location until we get this sorted out,” Jack said.

As he began to lead her away, they nearly ran into Amy, who stood in the doorway of the VIP room. Her eyes fell on Jack’s gun. “What’s going on? Where are you taking her?”

“We need to move now,” Jack said low in Cameron’s ear.

“Everything’s fine,” she told Amy. “Just stay with the other girls.”

Before she could say anything else, Jack took her by the arm and led her away.

NAVIGATING HIS WAY through the dark, Jack led Cameron through the maze of people hanging out in the hallway. People who, unlike him, enjoyed the thrill of the power outage.

He needed a confined space, preferably one with a lock on the door.

Having no such luck on the second floor, he found a back staircase and led Cameron upstairs. The first door on the right was shut. He pushed it open and barged in.

The room was small. An office. A man and a scantily clad woman sprang apart at the desk.

“What the hell?” the man asked, half pissed, half startled.

“Who are you?” Jack demanded.

“The manager. Who the f**k are you?”

Jack gestured to the door. “Get out.”

“Screw that. This is my office.”

Jack gestured to the door, this time with his gun. “Get out.”

The manager’s mouth fell open and he nodded. “We’re going.” He grabbed the girl and hurried out.

Jack locked the deadbolt on the door behind them. He let go of Cameron’s hand so that he could check out the room. A small loveseat along the south wall, a steel file cabinet, and a desk with one rolling chair. No closets or other doors, but there was a large window that led out onto the fire escape. He tested the window and saw it rose easily enough. In case of an emergency, it would do.

Realizing that Cameron had fallen quiet, he headed over. “Are you okay?”

“I’m okay.” She paced around the room restlessly.

“Stay away from the door,” Jack told her. “And the windows. Stick to the center of the room.”

“Right. Sorry.” She moved quickly toward the desk, putting it between her and the door. She glanced down at her purse, then set it on the desk, as if wanting her hands free. “This is probably just a coincidence, right?”

“I’ll tell you that when I know it.”

In the moonlight, Jack saw her bite her lip anxiously. Then she put on a brave face and nodded. “Fair enough.”

Jack felt something pull at him.

“But if it makes you feel better, I don’t give a f**k what comes through that door. They’re not getting to you.”

She gazed at him through the dark, surprised. Turning away, he walked over to the door and listened.

Presumably following his lead, Cameron fell silent. The room was eerily quiet until the sound of his vibrating cell phone cut through the tension.

Jack grabbed the phone out of his pocket, saw it was Wilkins, and answered. “Talk to me.”

“We’re all clear.”

“What’d you find out?” he asked, not yet abandoning his post at the door.

“The power is out for the entire block,” Wilkins said. “I had our office patch me through to ComEd, who said they’ve got a power line down. They’ve got a team working on it as we speak.”

Jack strode over to the window, looked outside, and saw that the buildings around them were dark as well. He spoke into the phone in a low voice. “Any chance this is a setup?”

“Not likely. I talked to both the director in charge of the district and the foreman on site. It’s an underground power line—an overnight construction crew got sloppy trying to fix the water pipes to that church across the street and dug a little too deep. It’s just a coincidence, Jack.”

Through the window, Jack could see the construction crew outside the church and several ComEd trucks. He looked over at Cameron. Her eyes stayed with him as she listened to his end of the conversation. “Thanks. We’ll meet you back at the VIP room.”

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