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  • Home > Anne Bishop > Black Jewels > Daughter of the Blood (Chapter 86)      Page
  • Daughter of the Blood(Black Jewels,Book 1)(86) by Anne Bishop
  • "Don't you ride, Prince?"

    "Yes, I ride."

    "Oh." She considered this. "Don't you want to come?"

    Daemon blinked. He looked at her beautiful, clear sapphire eyes. It had never occurred to her to exclude him. He smiled at her and gave her braid a gentle, playful tug. "Yes, I would like to come."

    She studied him again. "Don't you have any other clothes?"

    Daemon choked. "I beg your pardon?"

    "You're always dressed like that."

    Daemon looked at his perfectly tailored black suit and white silk shirt, completely taken aback. "What's wrong with the way I dress?"

    "Nothing. But if you wear those clothes, you're going to get wrinkled."

    Daemon started coughing and thumped his chest to give himself time to swallow the laughter. "I have some riding clothes," he wheezed.

    "Oh, good." Her eyes sparkled with amusement.

    Little imp. You know why I'm choking, don't you? You're a merciless little creature to mock a man's vanity.

    Jaenelle trotted to the door. "Hurry up, Prince. We'll meet you at the stable."

    "My name is Daemon," he growled softly.

    Jaenelle spun around, gave him an impudent curtsy and grinned before running down the hall.

    Daemon walked to his room as quickly as his still-sore toes allowed. His name was Daemon, not Prince, he growled to himself as he changed clothes. It always sounded like she was calling a damn dog even if itwas his proper Protocol title. It wouldn't hurt to call him by name, but she wouldn't because he was her elder.

    Daemon paused as he pulled on his boots. He started to laugh. Ifhe was her elder, then what did she think about the Priest?

    When Daemon got to the stable yard, there were two ponies saddled as well as a gray mare and Dark Dancer. Not sure which horse was intended for him, he approached Andrew. The stable lad gave Daemon a wobbly smile before ducking his head and re-checking Dancer's saddle.

    "Be careful," Andrew said quietly. "He's jumpy today."

    "Compared to what?" Daemon asked dryly.

    Andrew hunched his shoulders.

    Daemon's eyes narrowed. "Is there a reason for this jumpiness?"

    The shoulders hunched a bit more.

    Feeling the tension running through the yard, Daemon looked around.

    Jaenelle was talking quietly to one of the ponies. Wilhelmina stood nearby, waiting for someone to help her mount. Her cheeks were prettily flushed from the crisp autumn air and the excitement of riding, but she kept glancing nervously in his direction and refused to acknowledge him. "Mother Night," he muttered and went over to Wilhelmina to give her a leg up.

    After helping Wilhelmina mount, Daemon turned to give Jaenelle a hand, but she was already on her pony, grinning at him.

    "We'd best be off if we're going," Andrew said nervously.

    As Daemon turned to answer him, he glanced around the yard. All the stable lads stood absolutely still, watching him. They all know, he thought as he mounted Dark Dancer. She was their precious secret.

    Guinness came out of his office and headed toward them, his head down and shoulders hunched as if he were walking into a heavy wind. When he reached them, he sucked his cheek for a minute, cleared his throat a couple of times, and looked in their direction without looking at any of them. He cleared his throat again. "Now, you ladies haven't been out for a while, so I want you to take a nice easy hack. No rough riding, none of them big jumps. Nothing faster than a canter. And De—Dark Dancer there hasn't been out much either"—he glanced guiltily at Daemon—"so I don't want you to let him have his head and hurt himself. Understand?"

    "We understand, Guinness," Jaenelle said quietly. Her voice was serious, but her lips twitched and her eyes sparkled.

  • Romance | Fantasy | Vampire