A golden envelope was tucked into his jacket breast pocket. He memorized the missive and now sat among the lunch crowd on a busy, and familiar street. Minkin Bercu knew the area well, having worked this territory as a senior guardian before his recent promotion.
The last time Bercu was on Market Street, he successfully protected his charge, but, unfortunately, had to sacrifice a perfectly good cinnamon roll. It was that sacrifice that led Bercu to Jonas, a troubled new guardian with great potential.
After Bercu received his current assignment, he sought out Jonas. He needed a fresh perspective, and his apprentice was just the man to help with this job. Bercu needed to fit in, and his usual gray morning suit was like a neon sign flashing “Look Here!” Out of place and uncomfortable in clothes he wasn’t accustomed to wearing, Bercu felt vulnerable and exposed.
“Once I suss out the details, we can move on this project,” Bercu said to his lunch companion. “Jonas, you can play a major role in this being a success. That will go a long way toward advancing in the ranks.”
When Jonas first came under the tutelage of Bercu, he was still smarting from learning he was taken before his time because of an incompetent guardian. Jonas was determined to make his mark, even if it had to celestial and not terrestrial.
“Are you sure it’s okay for me to be involved?” Jonas had to ask but hoped for an affirmative answer.
“I was given complete autonomy on this project, and I think you will be a valuable asset.” Bercu initially only needed fashion advice from the younger guardian. Having been taken only a few months ago, Jonas was more familiar with modern trends. Bercu recruited him to be his dresser, but it turned out he would be much more.
“Did this job really come straight from Her?” Jonas was starstruck over being involved in a Priority One job.
“It did indeed,” Bercu said. “As such, we can rest assured that all the initial intel is wildly accurate. There should be no surprises.”
Those words would come back to haunt them. One thing that Bercu knew, and should have planned for, was that humans never do what is expected.
For now, blissfully unaware of their pending catastrophe, Bercu and Jonas sat in front of a small al fresco cafe, people watching, and waiting for their charge.