“You--” tried Luther, but David wasn’t done.
“And here, channel eight--oh. Non-stop infomercials. Always something interesting there. Then you have your channel for music videos, your channel for food, your channel for wildlife. And of course, I made sure to include several religious networks as well--I know how pious you are, so I’m sure you will enjoy those. Ah, and my favorite: the crackling fireplace. I am not even sure what you would call this channel, but I find it very soothing.”
Luther just shut his eyes and rubbed his forehead. What a bastard, David was.
Mariana wasn’t very fond of unexpected visitors. Perhaps she’d just spent too many years in places where such visits only ever meant that someone had come to kill her. Marriage and children had not softened her in that regard. If anything, they had made it worse. Or better, depending on one’s viewpoint. All of her children knew how to hold, fire, and clean a few different types of firearms--even Ramira, who was nine years old.
So when the guards out front radioed in with the message that some woman was requesting to see her and Zeff, it was no coincidence that the first thing Mariana did was slide the speaker box over and reveal a hidden recess in the wall. A handgun lay there, and she grabbed it. It wasn’t loaded, of course, but that was why she always carried a spare magazine around with her.
‘Would you relax?’ said Shenado.
There was a very simple answer to that question, but Mariana decided not to be rude. To her eyes, Shenado and Axiolis were both darkly orange foxes. Each had multiple tails that flickered with ethereal fire, just like their burning eyes.
The speaker box still worked fine in its new position, and Zeff asked the guards, “Does this woman have a name?”
A pause, and then, <“She says it’s Salazar. Says you know her.”>
Zeff blinked at his wife.
‘It’s been fifteen years,’ said Axiolis. ‘What’s she doing here?’
Mariana pressed the button and told the guards, “Let her in.”