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  • Home > Anne Bishop > Black Jewels > Dreams Made Flesh (Chapter 34)      Page
  • Dreams Made Flesh(Black Jewels,Book 5)(34) by Anne Bishop
  • "We still are."

    Still are.Oh, Mother Night. "So, Luci— Prince Yaslana's uncle is… ?"

    "Andulvar Yaslana.The Demon Prince. Prothvar Yaslana is Andulvar's grandson."

    "How?"

    "I'm a Guardian. Andulvar, Prothvar… and my oldest son, Mephis… are demon-dead."

    "But… Lucivar talks as if he sees them all the time."

    "He does."

    Marian stared at him. She was looking at a legend. Oh, not one ofher people's legends, but a legend nonetheless. And one who had known… still knew…the greatest Eyrien Warlord Prince who had ever lived.

    Dazzled, she studied him as if she hadn't spent the morning around him. He was wearing the Red, which must be his Birthright Jewel. A courteous man who had made her feel welcome. A widely read man, based on the books he and Jaenelle had talked about on the journey. He had a dry sense of humor she didn't always understand. He obviously loved his children.

    And he was the Prince of the Darkness, the High Lord of Hell…and Andulvar Yaslana's friend.

    "This is more exciting than learning that some wolves can talk," she said.

    He stared at her a moment, then laughed. When he held out his hand, she didn't hesitate to accept it.

    "Come along," he said. "If you're feeling up to it, we'd better rescue the poor males who have been trying to deal with Jaenelle."

    They were going back to the hotel for the afternoon. Marian could have hugged the High Lord for saying the morning had tired him and he needed to rest. Days spent doing heavy cleaning were less exhausting than a shopping trip with Jaenelle Angelline, and she welcomed the chance to get off her feet. They would have their midday meal at the hotel, and then…

    "This evening I'll take you two ladies to dinner," the High Lord said as they waited patiently for a horse-drawn cab that would take them back to the hotel.

    Marian's heart sank. They'd made it easy for her to forget she was a servant, that the social status between them was as wide a difference as her Purple Dusk Jewels were to the Black. But those differences would become painfully apparent even before they left the hotel, and she didn't want him to feel ashamed of being seen with her.

    "You don't have to include me," Marian said. "I'm sure you and Lady Angelline…"

    "You don't want to join us?" His words were gently spoken, but there was an undercurrent she didn't understand. "Why?"

    She had an odd feeling that it wasn't their acceptance of her but her acceptance of them that was really being questioned. So she told the truth and hoped he was one of those males who understood female vanity. "I don't have anything suitable to wear." Which was true. She was wearing the skirt and tunic Jaenelle had given her, and they were the best clothes she owned…far nicer than the things Luthvian had handed down to her…but they weren't appropriate for dining out.

    The High Lord froze, and Jaenelle, who had been watching the street for a cab, slowly pivoted to face her. The chilly anger in the High Lord's eyes made her nervous, but it was the cold fury in the Queen's eyes that scared her.

    The next thing she knew, a cab pulled up, she was bundled into it, and the High Lord was giving instructions to take them to the clothing shops.

    Not sure what she'd done to upset both of them, she hunched in her seat, her wings curved around her body since that was the only way she could sit in a cab that wasn't designed for winged passengers. She didn't dare mention that the High Lord had wanted to rest or that she didn't think she could afford a dress from any shop he would choose to patronize. She stayed quiet to avoid having that chilling anger focused on her.

    Besides, even though he'd initiated this extra shopping trip, the High Lordwas a man, and based on her observations of men who had escorted their ladies to her mother's shop, his interest wouldn't last long and they'd be heading back to the hotel in no time, with or without a suitable dress.

    * * *

    Marian stretched out on the bed, trying not to whimper. Who would have thoughtany man would have that much knowledge or interest in women's clothing? And when that man was the High Lord of Hell…«

    They'd walked into a shop that catered to Blood from aristo families. Within minutes, merchants from the neighboring shops came running, and she was tossed into the middle of a storm that made the furniture shopping seem calm in comparison. The High Lord found a green dress that complemented her light-brown skin. While she was in the dressing room being carefully measured to have wing slits made in the dress, the cobbler displayed his selection of shoes, other merchants brought selections of skirts, trousers, shawls…anything that complemented the Eyrien coloring of brown skin, black hair, and gold eyes was presented to the High Lord for inspection. He selected, Jaenelle bullied her into trying things on, and two hours later, when even Jaenelle's energy began to flag and the merchants were looking dazed and exhausted, she had a wardrobe of the finest clothes she'd ever owned.

    The door opened and Jaenelle walked into the room they were sharing. "Papa just wants to sleep for a while, but I'm going down to the dining room to get something to eat. What about you?"

    What about her? She couldn't raise her head off the pillow. "I'm not hungry."

    Jaenelle smiled. "All right.You get some rest."

    "Why were you so angry about the clothes?"

  • Romance | Fantasy | Vampire