Joel looked up. Mo was grabbing her arm, and there was blood seeping between her fingers. One of the men was staring at her from the other side of the cracked glass, his thick mustache cradling the satisfied smile on his face.
Joel started toward her, but Julien extended his hand to block his path. He then motioned for all of them to take a few steps back.
“Gio,” Mo examined her arm, “I got hit. But it looks like it just gra—”
The man’s satisfied grin was immediately replaced by a grimace. In seconds, he had a bullet in his forehead. Giorgio’s hand then made a full circle around the room, each tug of his finger taking the men down like targets on a dartboard.
When he was tired of the gun, he reached for a few of the circular blades and tossed them like he was spreading out a deck of cards, taking down more of Aleksandar’s entourage. One man, stupidly as Joel could only put it, made his way through the barrage and ran towards Giorgio, but then side-stepped him at the last minute to try to get to Mo. He’d barely touched a finger to one of the tiny, feminine hairs on Mo’s arm before Giorgio unclipped the scythe-holder from his belt and wrapped it around the man’s neck. He bent close to the man’s ear, whispered something unknown to the room, then tugged firmly on the wire. The man’s body thudded to the ground, the last of the ambush, then Giorgio pulled a new wire from his pocket to reattach his remaining scythes.
He grabbed Mo’s arm, examined it, and then pulled another blade, a spear point, from his pocket. Nothing but fury released it, a quick flick of his wrist, and it pierced the wall behind them, inches away from the side of Malcolm’s head. Joel gave Malcolm sixty seconds before he passed out. The hand holding the gun trembled, and when he walked over and took it from him, from the weight, he could tell that not a single shot had been fired.
“I’m okay, Gio,” Mo reassured. “It’s just a graze.”
He tugged her by the elbow, and they disappeared into the master suite.
Julien looked over at Joel and Malcolm. “Muzzle,” he said.
The two men sent him quizzical looks.
“You’ve never seen that cartoon?” he continued. “Road Rovers?”
The looks grew deeper.
“Wait ‘til you have your first kid. You’ll find yourself up at three am on YouTube looking for the cartoons that you grew up on to watch with them on Saturday mornings.”
“So,” Joel checked his gun’s cartridge, “was that part of the strategy? We leave the ring where we had our target in our sights, just to come back here to get ambushed?”
The levity disappeared as Julien’s face turned serious. “The plan was to bait Popović. I’m pretty sure that, up until today, he thought he was going up against just you and Sydney. We should have thrown him off his game, forced a mistake. The device I left him was specifically for him to track us here.” He walked to the front of the room and pulled apart what had appeared to be a built-in bookcase. “I just don’t know how the hell they got around my sensors. You can’t cut them. There aren’t any wires. You would have to hack into them to disable them, but there’s no way Popović would have tech that advanced. Unless…”
Sydney walked back over to Joel, her gaze avoiding the bodies on the floor. He pulled her to his side and pressed a kiss to the top of her head.
“Unless…?” Joel asked.
“You think it might be him?” Gage asked.