Guardians of Stone (The Relic Seekers)

Guardians of Stone (The Relic Seekers) by Anita Clenney Read Free Book Online

Book: Guardians of Stone (The Relic Seekers) by Anita Clenney Read Free Book Online
Authors: Anita Clenney
went around to the trunk, continuing to survey the outside for security problems. There were a few vehicles parked out front. He would have to check out the other guests. Tourists probably. When he made the reservation, the innkeeper said a small tour group was staying there.
    Jake threw his pack over his shoulder and gathered their duffel bags. This time Kendall didn’t beat him to the task, though she did take her bag from him before they approached the door. The doorbell jingled as they stepped inside. The lobby was friendly, yellow walls with pictures of smiling men and women. He could never figure out exactly what the people in Italian paintings were doing. Frolicking, he guessed, whatever that was. He wasn’t sure, but he had a pretty good idea what it would lead to.
    The man behind the desk appeared to be even friendlier than the walls. “You must be Jason Sutter and Kara Monroe. Welcome to Italy. I am Roberto.”
    Roberto was in his early thirties, immaculately dressed, and looked like he’d just gotten a manicure. And Jake suspected he was wearing eyeliner. After his welcome, the innkeeper’s attention remained focused on Jake.
    Kendall pressed her lips together and Jake knew she was hiding a grin.
    “What brings you to our little inn?” Roberto asked, looking Jake over head to toe.
    Jake threw an arm around Kendall’s shoulders and yanked her close. “We’re honeymooning.”
    Kendall gave a strangled gasp and Jake tightened his hold, pulling her closer. Damn, she smelled good.
    “Honeymooning? You’re married. But your names...”
    “She kept her maiden name,” Jake said.
    “Then I must change your room. I assumed you were just...friends.”
    “Room?” Kendall asked, her eyes doing that cactus thing again. She shot Jake a glare when Roberto turned his back. She could patent the damn things.
    “Our honeymooners always get the special room,” he said, sitting down in front of his computer. “I will switch with another guest.”
    Kendall had managed to pull away from Jake, which was fine with him. Her perfume was gnawing through his skin like a damned piranha.
    “Won’t the other guest mind?” she asked.
    “She hasn’t arrived yet,” Roberto said. “I only gave her the room because someone canceled and it was our last.” With a wink, he added, “It will be our little secret.” He turned to his computer and started muttering to himself.
    “Heaven’s sakes, Gilbert, I know I put them in here.” The voice was loud, with a twang that could only come from the American South. A woman entered the room. She was well into middle age, her strawberry blonde hair teased so high it looked like a wad of cotton candy stuck on her head. Her dress was a big floral thing that made her look like a hockey player in drag. She was digging in a tiny little purse while a skinny man trailed behind her. “Oh,” she said catching sight of Kendall and Jake. “More guests. Are you here for the tour?”
    “This is Jason and Kara from America,” Roberto said. “They’re honeymooning.”
    “Honeymooners,” the woman crooned. “Remember when we were honeymooners, Gilbert?”
    Her husband nodded, but his expression didn’t indicate whether it was a good memory.
    “Oh, we’re Gilbert and Loretta Jenkins,” the woman said. “From Georgia. We’re
tourists.
” She said the word with the same satisfaction one would expect from a person announcing that she was a movie star. “This is our first trip to Italy. Granddaddy passed away and left me some money, so I said to Gilbert, ‘Gilbert, let’s go to Italy.’ And Gilbert says, ‘I reckon we could.’ So we’vebeen touring Italy for two weeks now. Oh, there they are.” She pulled out a bottle of Tums. “I’ve developed acid reflux. I guess it’s all this Italian food.”
    “There,” Roberto exclaimed. “I have fixed the problem. I think you will enjoy this room much more. It is very romantic.” He grinned, and Jake wondered if Roberto was imagining

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