Starkey looked up from his desk at the woman who had just walked into the room. “Among other things. How can I help you?”
Mina steps back, heart pounding, her hand moving to her throat to rub the area his hand had been seconds before. She is blushing at her defeat, and unable to meet his eye.
"My edge?" she looks confused, and thinks for a moment. "Well, I can climb quite well, and I can dance, although I’m not sure what kind of an advantage those things are."
She watches his flourish as he puts the knife away, and once it is tucked safely in his pocket, she dives low, tackling him around the midsection and knocking him to the floor, landing atop his chest.
Looking surprised at her success, she rolls off of him, scrambling to her feet and assuming a defensive pose.
Starkey nodded, “Those are qualities that can be used. It is something we can work wi-” He let out a breath of surprise as he had Mina on top of him, “That’s my girl. You’re learning. Much much better.” Starkey patted Mina on the back. “You can get off me now.”
Mina stands, brushing off her trousers and pushing a strand of hair out of her face.
"Sorry about that, but I figured you wanted me to get the upper hand, and I haven’t a knife.." She looks a tad embarrassed, a blush rising again in her cheeks.
She waits for him then, her feet apart, hands on her hips, the pale skin of her stomach just peeking beneath the knotted shirt at her waist.
"So, what should I do then? I haven’t really the slightest idea how to do this, and I’m afraid you’re quite a bit stronger than I.."
"Look around you, what do you see? What can you use? If you cannot out punch me, or out run me. Then you out think me. Humanity is a cunning race, we trick our way up the food chain. Show me a cunning mind. What do you know about vampires? What are their weaknesses? What is it that you can do that they can not? This is what to consider, this is what you do to survive."
Starkey walked around Mina watching her every move. “A vampire can hear your heart beat, the sound of your breath, we can see every move you make with absolute clarity. We have such confidence in our capabilities that is a weakness. We have hightened senses, overly stimulate them and you have your advantage.”
Mina could feel his eyes upon her as she moved, and a shiver went up her spine.
What he said made sense; and she focused on her breathing, trying to keep her pulse- rate calm. She surveys the room quickly- table and chairs pushed to the side, no real objects within reach. Then, she thinks of it- a way to make him lose calm.
Mina shifts slightly as he moves behind her, keeping him just in the corner of her vision. By her side, out of his sight, she digs her sharp thumbnail into her other wrist, gritting her teeth against the pain as she releases the scent of her blood into the air, a crimson drop beading against her pale skin.
Starkey’s nostrils flared with the sudden release of blood. It seemed to take him by surprise. His breathing became heavy concentrating on his control, “Are you wanting me to drink from you?” He moved a little closer, focusing mostly on the wound. “What is in your head Mina? What are you thinking?” he said semi-calmly.
Mina darts for the table if weapons at his first step, her heart leaping like a jackhammer in her chest as she snatches up a dagger, spinning around and holding it out defensively.
Her breath burns in her chest from exertion, a smear of blood staining her fingers and the white fabric of her shirt.
She keeps her knees bent, center if gravity low, watching his posture for any warning that he is about to move. The space of a breath later, and she dodges past him, pulling aside the heavy drapes blocking out the mid-day sun. Bright light fills the room, the edge of shadow and light just at the tips of Starkey’s leather shoes.
"Didn’t you tell me to cheat?" Mina sounds breathless, her back to the window, knife lowered by her side, the sunlight glinting through her auburn curls like fire.