Meanwhile, in the hallway outside the guest I’d mentioned had arrived.
JD was tall, broad shouldered and lean. He wore red-tinted goggles in the place of sunglasses despite the late hour, a blue tee-shirt with black stripes, and jeans. A duffel bag was slung over his shoulder, and he was staring at the locked door to the apartment next to Ean’s. Well, hell, he muttered.
Almost immediately his cell phone rang. He fished it out of his pocket and flipped it open. Hello, he said cheerfully.
Is something wrong, a woman’s voice asked without preamble.
Nah, JD replied. I’m just too used to barracks life. I forgot to ask that manager guy for my keys.
The consternation on the other end was palpable in the woman’s silence. I’ll arrange for a locksmith to come out and let you in tonight, she said finally. Just sit tight.
Nah, JD said again. It’s cool: you don’t need to trouble yourself. I’ll just borrow the neighbor’s window ledge and break in on my own.
JD? The woman asked. JD, don’t you dare-
JD flipped the cellphone shut and tucked it away in his jeans pocket. I wonder what sort of neighbor I have, anyway, he mused.
Then the door to Ean’s apartment burst open. Demon! Big yelled as he fled down the hall. Run!
It’s going to eat my soul! Little wailed, hot on Big’s heels.
Dude, JD said as he turned to the open doorway. Sweet.