Once Malakh had finished dealing with his unexpected visitora female security guard from Preferred Securityhe fixed the paint on the window through which she had glimpsed his sacred work space.
Now, ascending out of the soft blue haze of the basement, he emerged through a hidden doorway into his living room. Inside, he paused, admiring his spectacular painting of the Three Graces and savoring the familiar smells and sounds of his home.
Soon I will be leaving forever. Malakh knew that after tonight he would be unable to return to this place. After tonight, he thought, smiling, I will have no need for this place.
He wondered if Robert Langdon yet understood the true power of the pyramid . . . or the importance of the role for which fate had chosen him. Langdon has yet to call me, Malakh thought, after double-checking for messages on his disposable phone. It was now 10:02 P.M. He has less than two hours.
Malakh went upstairs to his Italian-marble bathroom and turned on the steam shower to let it heat up. Methodically, he stripped off his clothes, eager to begin his cleansing ritual.
He drank two glasses of water to calm his starving stomach. Then he walked to the full-length mirror and studied his naked body. His two days of fasting had accentuated his musculature, and he could not help but admire that which he had become. By dawn, I will be so much more.