He whelved the vase over the object as the woman in the bright-blue coat entered the shop from the rain. He did not want anyone to see his prize. She ventured down the aisles looking at the collection of antiques. She ran her gloved hand over the surface of the glass case. She knew it was here; it called to her. She traveled the world collecting the items. Her job was simple; retrieve them at any cost and return them to the Center.
The man behind the counter eyed her uncomfortably. He knew why she was here and it was not fair. Why couldn’t he keep it longer? It made him feel strong—stronger than he actually ever had been.
Her ruby lips framed a sweet smile as she approached the counter.
“The amulet, please,” she said, her voice caressing his soul.
“I don’t know what you mean,” he feebly lied.
“I’ll ask you again,” she said calmly, pulling the Walther P99 from her handbag. “The amulet, please.”
Hands shaking, he lifted the vase from the counter. She glanced down at the amulet.
The sound of the gun echoed in the shop as she exited to the street.

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