Nightfall (Blood Magic #1) - L.H. Cosway Page 0,1

this happened, I froze and the thief got away with all the money from the register, as well as what was in the safe. Mr Hagen said he’d fire me if I let the store get robbed again, and I couldn’t afford to lose this job right now.

A greasy looking guy in a sweat-stained T-shirt and torn jeans stood by the counter, knife in hand. He wore a balaclava, but I was fairly certain I recognised him as the same scumbag who’d robbed us the last time.

“You again. I see the Tribane Police Department is doing a stellar job keeping the city safe.”

“Shut up and open the till, bitch,” he hissed, thrusting the knife towards me in an unwieldy manner. I quickly sidestepped out of the way.

“As you can see, I’m on my way to open it now,” I said, keeping my voice neutral as I passed by him and went behind the counter. The thief shoved a plastic bag at me. “Put it all in there.”

Over his shoulder, I saw the blond man appear. He placed his finger to his lips, and I furrowed my brow. I thought he might’ve done me a solid by calling the police. Instead it looked like he was going to try and take this guy on directly. Well, better him than me.

I tried to act normal as I opened the till and shoved cash inside the bag. “I didn’t realise thieves were so environmentally friendly these days.”

“What are you talking about?” the robber asked impatiently.

“You brought your own reusable bag,” I said. “Very forward-thinking. It’s nice to know there are people out there making an effort to tackle global warming.”

Behind him, Blondie smirked in amusement.

“Just put the money in the bag and shut your mouth,” he snapped.

“Sure thing,” I said with false politeness. As I spoke, Blondie reached out and swiped the knife from the thief’s grip. He moved fast, just like he did when he picked up the tin of beans. Maybe I was extra-tired, but his speed didn’t seem natural …

“Hey!” the thief exclaimed, grasping for his knife. Blondie was tall enough that he could easily hold it out of reach. Looking the thief dead in the eye, he said, “You’re going to leave now and never come back.”

The thief stilled, a strange look coming over him almost like he was in a trance. Then to my shock, he quietly turned and left the store.

Confused, I placed my hands on my hips and looked back at Blondie. “Eh, what the hell? How did you do that?”

Taking his time, Blondie pocketed the knife before turning his attention to me. I was vaguely aware of the red-haired woman and the other man standing a few feet behind him. Blondie pulled a fifty from his wallet and placed it on the counter. “For the food.” I glanced at the woman, who was holding a basket full of items. “I’m sorry to have to do this, Tegan, especially since you smell so very interesting, but I must insist you forget this ever happened.”

I stared at him blankly, intending to sound sarcastic, but my suppressed nerves from the attempted robbery made the word come out stilted. “Ooo—kay.”

“Until next we meet.”

With that, he left, the other two following behind him.

“Just take the basket with you then,” I muttered, shaking my head. Bunch of weirdos. I glanced down at the bag of cash and swore loudly. I was going to have to reorganise it and put it all back in the register.

“Fantastic. Just bloody fantastic.”


It was just past 6 am when I arrived back at my dingy little sixth-floor apartment. Exhausted and weary, I was ready for a shower and a long nap, but my plans were derailed when I found Florence, my seventeen-year-old neighbour, sitting outside my door.

Florence’s dad, Terry, was a violent alcoholic and an absolute waste of oxygen. I often let her hang out in my apartment when she needed space from him. I’d even given him a piece of my mind once or twice, but he still refused to change his ways.

“Hey,” I said softly. “Are you okay?”

Florence glanced up. “Can I sleep on your couch for a few hours? D-d-dad’s been a nightmare. He brought a lady friend home last night, and they’ve been drinking, smoking, and playing loud music in the living room ever since.”

I gritted my teeth at what she said, then pulled my keys from my pocket and nodded. “Sure, come on in.”

“Thank y-y-you,” she replied quietly. Florence had a