Piscis felt rather than saw the ornate porcelain dish hurling towards her head. Either luck or her gift allowed her to duck just in time so that the container of sticky black goo shattered against the wall instead of her skull. As the salty orbs of unborn fish oozed down the wall, Pi prepared herself to scan the minds in the room, looking for the perpetrator. This was not necessary, however, as the dishware pitcher made herself known by picking up another food selection from the buffet table and yelled across the room.
“Did you think I wouldn’t find out about your little whore?”
An ornate silver dish crashed into the window pane about six feet from the other stain, covering glass with bits of a spicy shrimp remoulade. The exceptionally bad aim of the obviously scorned woman who was now being subdued by hotel staff revealed the source of this woman’s angst. In between the two gourmet marks on the wall sat a stocky, balding man with his arm around a significantly younger red-haired girl showing ample cleavage.
Pi did not need to use her gift on the couple’s minds to know they were the guilty parties. It was written all over their faces as everyone else seated in Cafe de Narcisse gaped at them. As if on cue, the red-haired girl began to cry profusely and the older man, his face growing redder by the minute, hastily pulled some cash from his wallet and threw it on the table.
Pi cursed under her breath as her target hurried his young mistress out of the luxury hotel’s restaurant and presumably up to their room. Pi’s unique abilities were still new to her and required short distance to work. If only she hadn’t taken her sweet time selecting her meal instead of searching the Saturn Defense Minister’s mind for the new planetary missile system codes she was being paid to intercept. This was her own damn fault and she knew it.
Trost, her agent, would have more than just choice words for her if she returned empty handed. As serious as he was about each and every penny of his twenty-five percent commission, Trost was a hundred times more serious about his reputation to deliver. Paying the deficit commission from her own considerable bank account would not appease the death mark Trost would place on her, therefore failure to complete was not an option Piscis ever considered.
Soon after, Pi was standing with her ear pressed against the bedroom door, satisfied at hearing the grunts and sighs of sex because it provided the target an excellent distraction as she attempted to enter his mind undetected. It would not be easy and she was already drained from getting to this point. She had been startled by hotel patrons across the hall catching her picking the suite’s lock, and erasing herself from their minds had taken more than planned. If she was sloppy and the Minister sensed her presence (or more importantly her purpose) in his mind, the information would be useless. Codes known to be compromised can easily be changed and give her the same death mark as no codes would.
She placed her right hand on the door and stretched out with her mind. The girl must have been on top of him because she found her mind first. There was complexity there, more than she expected from a gold-digger, but lingering would take too much energy. There was no reliable gauge for her strength, but she was sure that she was well past half empty now.
Pressing her hand harder against the door, she pushed past and found her goal. As she expected, the Minister’s mind was fully engaged in his activity. However, his mind even while distracted was still difficult. So many plans and secrets. Pi rifled through information as if she was searching a filing cabinet.
Suddenly, the connection broke. Pi’s heart rate went up immediately. Had she been noticed?
Heavy breathing persisted in the other room, and it did not appear that anyone sensed her. She reached out once more, but all she could connect with was that this girl wanted something badly.
The connection dropped once again, and Pi realized how drained she was. She was out of power. But what could she do without her gift?
Just then, the sounds of orgasm filled the space. And damnit, someone was coming out of the bedroom. Pi could do nothing but hide in the curtain behind the desk, hoping the window would open silently for a hasty exit. As she fumbled with the latch, the red-haired girl came out of the bedroom and walked right towards her. Piscis could fight if need be, but she was exhausted. However, the girl did not seem to notice her at all. She sat down at the desk with her back to Pi and flipped on the computer.
Through the curtains, Pi could just make out some of the words on the screen and caught herself before she laughed out loud. This girl was not just a gold-digger it seemed. She was dumping multiple files, including the codes Pi needed, onto a memory crystal!
The relief of not being discovered must have recharged Pi ever so slightly because she felt a jolt of power as her gift returned to her. So she silently reached out from the curtain, through the tangled mess of red curls, and made contact. Instantly the girl’s head slumped onto the desk and began snoring. This time Pi allowed herself to laugh softly.
As she grabbed the loaded memory crystal, Pi thought to herself how fun it would be to hear the girl’s explanation when the Minister found her like this. But prudence got the better of her and she slipped out the window and into a waiting hovercraft. Speeding away, she flipped open her communicator and dialed her agent.
“Trost, you are going to get a kick out of this one…”