Ryan blinked as a woman strode by in a washed-thin black tank top, battered jeans, and laceless sneakers. Around her neck, she wore a thick chain, with a bell dangling from it, which chimed gently.
“Don’t stare at her,” Larry dug his elbow into Ryan’s side. “She’s a Bell.”
“Bell?” Ryan asked.
“A group of werecats. Tigers, panthers, leopards… she’s a serval, smaller than most of them–but she’s mean. Really mean,” Larry muttered.
Ryan watched out of the corner of his eye as the woman strode over to a table of people with bells gleaming on their chests. She shoved a man out of a seat and took it for herself. The man, who had at least six inches of height and forty pounds of muscle on her, meekly wedged himself onto the edge of the bench.
The woman leaned forward, her short cap of dark hair gleaming in the light. Her hands flashed in emphasis as she spoke, though her voice never rose above a murmur.
A blonde-haired woman sitting across from the brunette shook her head, and slammed her hand on the table.
In a flash, the first woman produced a knife and drove it though the blonde’s hand, pinning it to the table. No one reacted to the violence, continuing the conversation for a few more moments.
And then several of them produced pieces of black cloth and tied them around the bells. The woman with the knife through her hand pulled it free, and tied a cloth around her bell, ignoring the blood welling up from the wound.
Single file, they strode out of the bar, silenced bells swinging darkly as they went. The door swung shut behind them, and the hushed crowd slowly started talking again.
“They’re going to kill someone,” Larry whispered. “We’d better stay here for a while.”