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  • Heir to the Shadows(Black Jewels,Book 2)(3) by Anne Bishop
  • Lucivar opened his eyes. "How in the name of Hell should I know?"

    "When the Warlords lost the trail, Sadi was heading southeast—toward Pruul. It's well-known—"

    "He wouldn't come here." That shattered something deep within him began to burn. "He wouldn't dare come here."

    Dorothea SaDiablo stepped toward him. "Why not? You've helped each other in the past. There's no reason—"

    "Thereis a reason," Lucivar said savagely. "If I ever see that cold-blooded bastard again, I'll rip his heart out!"

    Dorothea stepped back, shaken. Zuultah watched him warily.

    Philip Alexander slowly lowered his arms. "He's been declared rogue. There's a price on his head. When he's found—"

    "He'll be suitably punished," Dorothea broke in.

    "He'll be executed!" Philip replied heatedly.

    There was a moment of heavy silence.

    "Prince Alexander," Dorothea purred, "even someone from Chaillot should know that, among the Blood, there is no law against murder. If you didn't have sense enough to prevent an emotionally disturbed child from toying with a Warlord Prince of Sadi's temperament . . ." She shrugged delicately. "Perhaps the child got what she deserved."

    Philip paled. "She was a good girl," he said, but his voice trembled with a whisper of doubt.

    "Yes," Dorothea purred. "A good girl. So good your family had to send her away every few months to be ... reeducated."

    Emotionally disturbed child. The words were a bellows, stoking the fire within Lucivar to ice-cold rage. Emotionally disturbed child.Stay away from me, Bastard. You'd better stay away. Because if I have the chance, I'll carve you into pieces.

    At some point, Zuultah, Dorothea, and Philip had withdrawn to continue their discussion in the cooler recesses of Zuultah's house. Lucivar didn't notice. He was barely aware of being led into the salt mines, barely aware of the pick in his hands, barely aware of the pain as his sweat ran into the new lash wound on his back.

    All he saw was the bloodstained sheet.

    Lucivar swung the pick.


    He didn't see the wall, didn't see the salt. He saw Daemon's golden-brown chest, saw the heart beating beneath the skin.

    Silky . . . court-trained . . .liar!

    2 / Hell

    Andulvar settled one hip on a corner of the large, blackwood desk.

    Saetan glanced up from the letter he was composing. "I thought you were going back to your eyrie."

    "Changed my mind." Andulvar's gaze wandered around the private study, finally stopping at the portrait of Cassandra, the Black-Jeweled Queen who had walked the Realms more than 50,000 years ago. Five years ago, Saetan had discovered that Cassandra had faked the final death and had become a Guardian in order to wait for the next Witch.

    And look what had happened to the next Witch, Andulvar thought bleakly. Jaenelle Angelline was a powerful, extraordinary child, but still as vulnerable as any other child. All that power hadn't kept her from being overwhelmed by family secrets he and Saetan could only guess at, and by Dorothea's and Hekatah's vicious schemes to eliminate the one rival who could have ended their stranglehold on the Realm of Terreille. He was certain they had been behind the brutality that had made Jaenelle's spirit flee from her body.

    Too late to prevent the violation, a friend had taken Jaenelle away from her destroyers and brought her to Cassandra's Altar. There, Daemon Sadi, with Saetan's help, had been able to bring the girl out of the psychic abyss long enough to convince her to heal the physical wounds. But when the Chaillot Warlords arrived to "rescue" her, she panicked and fled back into the abyss.

    Her body was slowly healing, but only the Darkness knew where her spirit was—or if she would ever come back.

    Pushing aside those thoughts, Andulvar looked at Saetan, took a deep breath, and puffed his cheeks as he let it out. "Your letter of resignation from the Dark Council?"

    "I should have resigned a long time ago."

    "You had always insisted that it was good to have a few of the demon-dead serving in the Council because they had experience but no personal interest in the decisions."

  • Romance | Fantasy | Vampire