Agent Out of Time (Chapter One - Hot Rocks, page 1 of 4)

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The graceful fingers paused and then spun the dial back to zero to begin all over again, which was followed by a harder click.

The shadowy figure in the darkened room straightened up as the other gloved hand went to the handle of the wall safe and gave it a crank. The door of the safe opened with a soft whoosh of air. The thief grew quite still for a moment and listened, but all was still within the penthouse suite.

The thief was about to turn back to the safe when a slight rumble sounded close by. The figure in black froze, even as the rumbling continued, cautiously a hand reached out into the darkness to stroke the chin of the cat, who had caught her in the act.

Deshavi chuckled softly as the cat pushed into her stroking fingers, its rumbling purr only intensifying. Deshavi petted the cat a few times before she commenced to rob the cat's owner blind. Her hand slipped into the safe and started pulling bundles of cash out, which she tossed in a bag as the affectionate cat pressed up against her leg.

The money wasn't why she'd come, but it was always nice to have and she was sure she could make use of it somehow. Her gloved fingers touched the box and stilled. This is what she had come for. She pulled the slim box out of the safe and opened it in the dim light. Out of it she brought the heavy necklace that lay against the velveteen background.

The twinkling lights of the Big Apple cityscape outside were caught and reflected by the many faceted sides of the diamonds that made up the necklace. The prisms of reflected light shot throughout the room into a many hued display of color that reflected the range of colors of the outside cityscape.

Diamonds, but not just any diamonds. These diamonds had a history, which dated back to the czars and empresses of Russia. They were beautiful and now they were hers. She reached up and clasped the necklace around her neck and took one last glance at it before tucking it underneath the black jersey knit shirt she wore. She gave the cat one final pat before grabbing the bag that she had come with. She started to rise to her feet, which is when she saw the red dot light up on her chest.

A heavily accented Russian voice spit out, "Take the necklace off! Now!"

Deshavi's hand slipped back in the dark and jerked the cat's tail hard. The cat screeched and the red dot wavered from her in a moment of confusion. Deshavi struck out knocking the gun to the side and then she lunged away, as moments later a bullet plowed into the spot where she had just been kneeling.

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