When I woke up in the morning, all the restraints were gone. No sign of that freakish midnight intrusion.
Maybe it was just a dream? I couldn’t help but hope. But if it was real… then it was a lead. And I had to follow up on it.
After the normal morning routine, Luke and I grabbed some of the hotel’s complementary breakfast. As we ate, I told him what happened.
“He said he knew you. And that you’d vouch for him.” I shook my head. “Didn’t tell me his name, though.”
Luke stayed silent.
“Does he sound like anyone you know?”
“I–yeah.” He sighed. “Lucifer.”
“Lucifer?” I raised an eyebrow. “As in–”
“He’s not the devil. Though he loves to make people think he is.”
“How do you know him?”
Luke tapped his fingers against the table. “He’s… he’s my brother.”
“Your brother?” I mentally shuddered at the thought of growing up with a brother like that. “Has he always been like that?”
Luke nodded. “There’s a reason his name is Lucifer.”
I looked down at my half-eaten muffin. Neither one of us had taken a bite since the conversation began.
“Any idea where he is now?” I asked.
“Um… no. And… we should probably just… find out more about this secret research. That’s probably why he stole the items in the first place: to get us to investigate the warehouse.”
“Any idea how he found out about the research?”
“He’s omniscient. He knows everything.”
“Seriously? Literally everything?”
“How’s that even possible?” Possessing all the knowledge in the world… the position of every atom? I figured it wouldn’t be full omniscience, but… I’d seen enough crazy stuff that I no longer dismissed anything as impossible.
A shrug. “He’s a god of truth and knowledge. I don’t understand how it works, but his knowledge has saved my life more times than I can count.”
“Can we trust him to keep his word?”
“Well… he never outright lies, so if he makes a promise, he’ll keep it. But… he likes to trick people. Best to consider all possible interpretations of anything he says.”
I recalled my conversation with Lucifer. He’d been pretty clear that he’d tell us where the items were once we figured out what was going on in the facility. No ambiguity there.
I sighed. “Will he cause any trouble with the stuff he stole?”
“I–he might. He’s hard to predict. I–I never really know what to expect.” He paused. “What’s… what’s going to happen to him?”
“Assuming we catch him? Jail, at the very least. Depends how much trouble he causes. If he tries to do something with the stuff he stole… he might even be executed.”
Luke’s wings twitched, spreading out almost a meter for a split second.
“Sorry.” I shouldn’t have said that. It’s his own brother we’re talking about. “Are you two close?”
“Not by choice,” he muttered.
“Uh–we–we’ve been on the run for a long time. Never been able to settle down for long, so… we don’t have anyone else. Can’t really afford to be picky about my company.”
“Right…” I got the feeling there was more to it than that, but I wasn’t going to push it. Luke was clearly uncomfortable talking about all this, so I’d let it go. For now, anyway.
I sighed and returned my attention to breakfast.