Her call was lost in the thunder of explosive charges. She twisted back to the first mate and hissed, “You want to let them go up against the Earl alone?”
Gladstone hesitated, and that was enough. She twisted, slipped from his grip and was after them in a flash, skipping up stairs that trembled and vibrated with a life of their own.
Elletra burst through a door at the top of the stairs into an office, orange firelight flickering against a tall wooden desk. Shadows danced on the far wall – the silhouettes of two men.
Father and son stood opposite each other once again. The Earl was holding a small sheaf of papers. Hawkeye’s revolver was trained squarely at the Earl’s chest.
It was the Earl who spoke first, however.
“Put the gun down, boy.”
Elletra, twice as far from the Earl again, nearly reeled under the strength in that single command. It was an authority almost physical in force, and though Hawkeye growled, he did so.