• Home
  • Directory
  • Popular
  • Authors
  • Series
  • Home > Anne Bishop > Black Jewels > Heir to the Shadows (Chapter 201)      Page
  • Heir to the Shadows(Black Jewels,Book 2)(201) by Anne Bishop
  • "It iss not I who ssayss sso, High Lord.Jaenelle ssayss sso." Draca looked past them to the Dark Throne.

    As one, they turned.

    Dressed in that cobwebby black gown and wearing Ebony Jewels, Jaenelle sat serenely in the blackwood chair. Her long golden hair was brushed away from the face that finally revealed its unique beauty.

    "The time has come for me to take up my duties as the Queen of Ebon Askavi," Jaenelle said. Her voice wasn't loud, but it carried throughout the chamber. "The time has come for me to choose my court."

    A breathless tension filled the chamber.

    Saetan concentrated on breathing slowly, steadily. For days he'd been telling himself that court service was for the young and vigorous, that he'd never intended to serve formally, that the unspoken service he performed was enough, that he had experienced serving in the Dark Court at Ebon Askavi when he'd been Cassandra's Consort.

    Except he hadn't, because, in a way he couldn't put into words, it hadn't really been the Dark Court. Not like this one.

    And he suddenly understood why Cassandra had withdrawn from them.

    Thiswas the court he had waited to serve in.This was the court he'd always craved. He wanted to serve the daughter of his soul, who had finally come into her dark, glorious power.

    Witch. The living myth. Dreams made flesh.

    This had beenhis dream.

    And Lucivar's, he realized, seeing the fire in his son's eyes. Yes, Lucivar would have craved a Queen who could meet his strength.

    Jaenelle's voice pulled him back. "Prince Chaosti, will you serve in the First Circle?"

    Gracefully, Chaosti knelt on one knee, a fisted hand over his heart. "I will serve."

    Saetan frowned. How was Chaosti going to serve in Jaenelle's First Circle when he'd already accepted service in Gabrielle's First Circle?

    "Prince Kaelas, will you serve in the First Circle?"

    "I will serve."

    He became more and more puzzled as Jaenelle called out name after name. Mephis, Prothvar, Aaron, Khardeen, Sceron, Jonah, Morton, Elan. Ladvarian, Mistral, Smoke, Sundancer.

    And then he, Andulvar, and Lucivar were the only males left standing, and everything in him waited for her next words.

    "Lady Karla, will you serve in the First Circle?"

    "I will serve."

    Shock ripped through Saetan, quickly followed by pain so intense he didn't think it would be possible to survive it. She hadn't forgiven him. At least, not enough.

    "Lady Moonshadow, will you serve hi the First Circle?"

    "I will serve."

    He swallowed hard. He couldn't react,wouldn't let the others see the hurt. But if she was going to allow Mephis and Prothvar to serve, why not Andulvar? Why not Lucivar, who already served her?

    He barely heard the other names being called out. Gabrielle, Morghann, Kalush, Grezande, Sabrina, Zylona, Katrine, Astar, Ash. On and on until all the witches had accepted a place in the court.

    Draca and Geoffrey couldn't formally serve because they served the Keep itself. If there was comfort knowing that, it was a bitter brew.

    He could feel Lucivar trembling beside him.

    After a moment's silence, Jaenelle rose and walked down the three steps. Her eyes narrowed as she looked at him. He felt her exasperation as she lightly brushed against the first of his inner barriers.

    She pushed up her left sleeve and made a small cut in her wrist.

  • Romance | Fantasy | Vampire