After rubbing your cheek on your shoulder to try and shift the itchy black fabric that was pressing against your face, you tried to squint through the weave when you heard someone enter the room, only just making out a silhouette of a tallish body looming just in front of where you were sat on the chair. You tensed up and struggled against the rope bonds that were around your wrists when you knew what was coming next, refusing to make any sound of pain when a heavy fist connected with your gut.
"Ready to talk? Assassin?" The man hissed in a gravelly voice, obviously using something to distort it so you wouldn't be able to recognise him.
Your stomach was growling, and your mouth was parched, so you knew that you had been held captive here for some time now, but still you kept quiet, a smirk adorning your lips as you waited for a certain someone to arrive. Then. You would have your retribution. As if right on cue, the door was kicked open with a resounding bang; echoing through what you assumed was a sparsely furnished room, followed by heavy footsteps and a bellowing roar aimed at the man in front of you.
"Just what do you think you are doing?! You have three seconds to explain yourself Charles, or I will cut you down where you stand!"
You jumped slightly in your seat when you heard a shuffle and a colossal thud against the wall to your right, unintentionally snorting as you imagined what was going on in front of you.
"I w-was... interrogating the assassin.... sir... I..... thought...." the smaller of the two men stammered out in his natural voice, clearly petrified of what you knew to be his superior.
"You do not think! I do the thinking here! Your orders were to abduct and contain, nothing more! Disobey me again, I assure it will be the last thing you ever do!"
Tilting your head when you heard the man yelp as he was thrown out of the door and it was slammed shut behind him, you let out a slight huff of displeasure as you realised that you wouldn't be getting your revenge today. Hearing the all too familiar sound of a hidden blade being flicked out, you flexed your arms when your bindings were cut and dropped to the floor, the black hood being tugged off your head and following shortly after.
"Took your time." You chided to the formally dressed man in front of you, rubbing the sore marks on your wrists when they started to sting a little.
"I deeply apologise (name). I trust you know this wasn't my intention, Charles will be severely punished for his actions I assure you. Are you alright?"
Brushing yourself straight and catching glimpses of your, 'captor' out of the corner of your eye, you bit the corner of your lip when you liked what you saw. He was dressed in a tailored navy pinstripe suit, crisp powder blue shirt and a crimson red tie, secured with a jewelled pin in the shape of a cross. His slightly greying hair was groomed back perfectly, and he was clean shaven, nothing surprising from what you knew about the man. Very nice. Very nice indeed. You thought.
"I'm fine Haytham, Charles punches like a girl. Ten more minutes and you would have been without a second in command though."
Grinning when he chuckled softly and gestured towards the door, you grabbed your jacket off the table behind you and slung it over your shoulder casually, following him out of the brilliant white interrogation room. Your heels clacked on the marble flooring of the barren lobby as you made your way to the glass elevator, punching the button a little too forcefully to call the lift. Neither of you said a word as you travelled to the top floor of the building; which was much more elegantly decorated in red, creams and golds, in complete contrast with the rest of the complex.
Silently closing the door when you entered the office at the end of the hall, you chucked your jacket and purse onto the large black leather sofa next to you and slumped down into the chair in front of the lavish oak desk, kicking off your shoes as you propped your legs up on the armrest.
"So, you have the locations I asked for?"
"Straight down to brass tacks eh? No, how was Russia (Name)? Did you freeze your ass off?"
Haytham chuckled as he sat down at his desk, propping his elbows on the edge and pressing his fingers together while trying to keep his eyes from lingering over your legs too long.
"Apologies, my ability for idle banter has been suppressed of late. How was Russia? I can see quite clearly that you did not 'freeze your ass off' as you put it."
Smirking as you watched him shift his gaze to stare at a knot in his desk when you purposefully turned in your seat, so he had a better view of your rear, you realised how much you missed teasing the man. Your relationship was a platonic one, just, and you oh so enjoyed making his feathers ruffle from time to time.
"Not bad, boring mostly. Plenty of excellent vodka to drown out Shaun’s prattling though. And yes, I have all three locations of the newest Assassin bureau's you asked for."
Jumping up out of the chair, you leaned over the desk and grabbed the pad and paper that was next to his computer and resumed your position in your seat, jotting down the coordinates that you had memorised. It had been your one rule when you made the decision to betray the Assassins, zero trail of it leading back to you. No emails, calls or messages, nothing digital that would get you found out. With Shaun and his newest Elite tech team monitoring all of the Brotherhoods activity, it made it like that even going to the bathroom wasn't a private affair anymore. Sliding the pad onto the desk, Haytham snapped it up quickly and ripped off the top three pages; ensuring that there was no trace of words from the pen's pressure underneath, and hastily typed the numbers into his computer. Once he had finished, he pulled open his drawer and took out a rather ornate silver stick lighter, using it to set the corner of the pages on fire. You simply nodded and let out the breath you had been holding as you watched the flames consume the proof of your treachery, all evidence now in cinders at the bottom of Haytham’s wastepaper basket.
"Payment in the usual form I'm assuming?"
"Why Mr Kenway, you know me so well." You giggled as he passed you a small, black velvet bag.
Tipping its contents into your palm, you could help but admire how the diamonds sparkled in the light. So clean, so pure, much unlike yourself of late. In keeping with your principal of doing absolutely anything to assure you wouldn't be caught in your exploits, Haytham had made the suggestion of reimbursing you for your troubles in jewels and trinkets; something that could be easily hidden and fenced, so you happily agreed. Slipping the gems back into the bag and sliding it into your bra, you breathed out an exasperated sigh when you saw that he wanted to ask you something, but was hesitating for some reason.
"Come on, out with it. I know you want something else. It's about the ball, isn't it."
Haytham slumped back into his chair, and his face became awash with guilt, something you had rarely seen him do. He had been asking a lot of you recently, the conflict between the Assassin Brotherhood and the Templars becoming more unbridled every passing day, and at this moment in time, the Templars were winning.
"Figured as much. I'm not gonna ask how you know about it, I only found out yesterday. What do you need me to do?"
Swinging your legs down as Haytham rummaged through another drawer in his desk, you mentally prepared yourself to ingrain whatever information he was about to give you to memory, hoping that it wasn't much as you were still fatigued after a long flight, then being abducted from the airport minutes after you had landed. Your brow furrowed in confusion when he handed you a single sheet of paper, the only thing on it being a photograph of an old necklace. A circular jade stone, with a leather string for a chain.
"I don't understand, you want this old thing? It looks worthless, not to mention it's hideous."
"That my dear.." Haytham paused for a moment to dramatise the importance of the item to him and to get up and stand beside you, hoping to calm your temperament when he revealed his plan to you.
"Is more valuable than anything I have given to you so far, and is paramount to the Order that we have it in our possession. We have learnt that is being held at Achilles estate, and the ball would provide an opportunity to retrieve it."
"Wait, you want me to...?!"
You were cut off by Haytham shaking his head slowly and flickering his eyes to the door, making you turn your head in the direction of it but become bewildered when you saw no one there.
"I do not wish for you to steal it (name), that would put you in great danger. My desire is for you to take someone with you, to help him infiltrate the manor, so he can procure it."
Feeling Haytham's hand on your shoulder to hold you in place when you went to jump out of your chair as a clicking sound came from behind you, rage began to fill every fibre of your being when a man walked silently through the door and closed it behind him, the Grand Master's promise of not letting a single person know who you were thrown straight out of the window. You inadvertently sliced through your gunmetal silk blouse as you flicked out your hidden blade in anger, looking up at Haytham like you wanted to gut him like a fish.
"Please my dear, calm down."
"Calm?! CALM?! How can you expect me to be calm! You broke your promise! Fucking Templar, I knew I couldn't trust you!"
Haytham dropped to his knees in front of you and held your arms to your side until you retracted your blade, wincing at your seething expression as you continued to glare at him.
"Mr Cormac here is taking just as big of a risk unveiling himself to you (name), until this moment the only person in the world who knew he was alive, was myself. He will not reveal your secret, as I am sure you will not divulge his. Is that acceptable?"
Pacified slightly at hearing this information, you nodded numbly, your temper disappearing as quickly as it had arisen. Haytham was one of the very few people who knew how to dissolve your volatile disposition with ease; a sly grin creeping up your face as he cupped your chin and caressed your cheek with his thumb.
"Excellent. Now my dear, please let me introduce Mr Shay Cormac, one of the most trusted associates in our Order. Shay, this is (name) (last name), currently a member of the Brotherhood, and also working for us."
Sighing as you got up from the chair and examined your now ruined blouse for a moment, you extended your hand towards the man, your breath hitching when you laid eyes on him for the first time since he came in. He was dressed entirely in black, shirt rolled up to his elbows and accentuated with a deep red tie pulled down loosely around his neck, and oh my he was devilishly handsome. His shoulder length brown hair was tied back, he was obviously a not a fan of razor blades as he had light stubble over his chiselled jaw, and he had a long scar over his right brow and cheek, making him even more dashing in your opinion. But what captivated you most were his eyes. Dark, with a hint of sadness behind them, but also a playful glimmer as he sized you up in the same way you were doing to him. Yet there was something about him that you couldn't quite place, and for some strange reason you had the initial feeling that you could trust him completely. An extreme rarity in your line of work.
One thing about working for the Assassins and the Templars was that they were never short of eye candy, making you wonder if it was a requisite when they joined. Know how to use a variety of deadly weapons? Check. Silently and stealthily kill a known assailant? Check. Can you distract any woman and will her panties into nothingness just by looking at her? Double check. You had been without company for some time now, and your libido was through the roof, the Adonis-like men in your vicinity not helping matters in the slightest. Dropping the Templars hand when Haytham cleared his throat beside you; making you realise that you had been staring, you only just managed to keep the heat rising up your face as you retook your seat, Cormac sitting in the one next to you.
"Now that the introductions are out of the way, shall we discuss your next assignment?"
"Guess so. I assume you already know where Achilles is keeping that thing? I have no idea." You grumbled as you got up yet again and went to the drinks cabinet in the corner, grabbing the carafe of water and a glass when your mouth began to remind you of a desert.
"I do indeed my dear, he has a hidden vault behind his office wall. Plan's or photographs however have been extremely difficult to come by, to say the least."
Downing the glass of water in one quick swallow, you mulled over just how on earth you were going to get into the masters' office without being detected.
"Begging ya pardon Master Kenway, but surely (name) here would be able to find out what we're up against?"
Both men suddenly snapped their attention to you when the glass that was in your hand crashed to the floor and shattered, invisible shards flying everywhere around your bare feet. You tried to shake off the shiver that ran down your spine when you had finally heard Shay speak, his delectable Irish accent both surprising you and sending a tremor straight to your core. Crouching down to hide your humiliation and attempt to pick up the broken pieces, you looked up through your eyelashes to see Shay smirking at you, and Haytham jumping up from his desk to rescue you, so to speak.
"Do not move my dear, lest you want a toe shorn off."
"I'm, sorry. I must be more tired than I thought. Planes eh?"
You chuckled and tried to brush off your embarrassing moment as Haytham ducked down and picked you up bridal style, carrying you away from the broken glass and sitting you on the edge of the desk.
"We should carry on with this at another time Master Kenway, I'm knackered too, damned travelling does take it outta ya. I'm staying at the Mandarin Oriental lass, we could do this tomorrow?"
Your brow furrowed a fraction when you saw that Shay didn't look exhausted in the slightest, so he must have concocted it up to make you feel better. Something that definitely wasn't necessary, and it annoyed you slightly. You didn't want, or need to be protected in any way shape or form. Leaning over to grab your shoes, you faked a yawn and gave him a thumbs up, watching him drop his business card on the desk and leave out of the corner of your eye.
"Now why do I not believe you are telling the truth? I have seen you go for three days without sleep before now, and only then did you look slightly fatigued. Is something troubling you?"
As soon as you had slipped your shoes back on you looked up and flashed Haytham your widest smile, throwing him a cheeky wink in hopes he wouldn't barrage you for the real reason of your clumsiness.
"What makes you think I haven't been up for that long? I do have a life outside of this you know." You huffed, gesturing around you to suggest that you meant working for the Templars.
"No, you don't my dear. The very reason you will not allow me to take you to my bed. Or had you forgotten your excuses?"
Cocking your head in a kittenish way when he began to stroke your legs through your leather trousers, you grabbed his tie and wove it through your fingers, pulling him down and closer to your face.
"They're not excuses Haytham. What we do is dangerous, risky, and time-consuming, making a relationship is damn near impossible to keep. We've both tried and failed with other people before, so let's not spoil what we have, hmmm?"
Leaning in and kissing his cheek when he let out a downhearted sigh, sliding off the desk and walking over to the sofa and gathering up the rest of your belongings, you suddenly recalled Cormac's business card and grabbed it off the desktop, stuffing it into your back pocket haphazardly.
"I suppose you are right. Please allow me to admire that outfit you are wearing though, it is quite... titillating, to say the least."
You chuckled and wiggled your ass at him as you walked towards the door, giving it a slap for good measure when you saw him bite his lip and slouch back down in his chair behind the desk.
"(Name), should you change your mind...."
"I know where to find you Haytham." You sighed as you opened the door and left, pulling it shut with your foot behind you.