The expression of startled awe on Orlov’s face had helped ease some of Fane’s tension. The fact that he could elicit some form of respect from the man was reassuring. Fane might not be cultured and refined. He might not have great table manners, or etiquette befitting royalty. At least he had stealth, and fortitude to make it through a simulated disaster zone.
What the hell were they thinking? How was he supposed to teach a bunch of people how to defend royalty? He rubbed the palm of his right hand with his thumb, rubbing at the pressure points. He just wanted to feel like a normal person. What was the deal with this prince?
The hair on the back of his neck raised as a chill ran down his spine. Someone was in the room with him. His hand crawled toward a pocket on his thigh. Inside, he had stashed a set of his personal throwing knives. The other knives he had packed out earlier for the test were property of the armory and he had to give them back at the end of testing, but these were his own. Small, precise, they varied in size, the largest just barely two inches longer than his palm when closed around the shaft. The short ones fit between his fingers, an easy replacement for a pair of brass knuckles – though it was a good way to completely ruin his tendons.
His heart raced and the tension that he loved coiled itself around his spine as the temperature in the locker room plummeted. A sadistic smile touched his lips. His hearing sharpened. He readied himself. The other person hadn’t identified their presence. He practically shook with excitement. He waited. Then he saw what he was looking for. A flash of silver crossed his vision. A knife. An arm pressed against the back of his shoulder, a death grip bruising his traps.
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