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  • Home > Anne Bishop > Black Jewels > Heir to the Shadows (Chapter 38)      Page
  • Heir to the Shadows(Black Jewels,Book 2)(38) by Anne Bishop
  • "Why?" she finally asked, leaning back far enough to see his face.

    "Because Lorn has decided we should live at the Hall."

    "Oh." Then she added, "No wonder you're moody."

    Saetan laughed. "Yes. Well. He does have a way of limiting one's options." He gently brushed her hair away from her face. "I do want to live at the Hall with you. I want that very much. But if you want to live somewhere else or have any reservations about leaving the Keep right now, I'll fight him over it."

    Her eyes widened until they were huge. "Oh, dear. That wouldn't be a good idea, Saetan. He'smuch bigger than you."

    Saetan tried to swallow. "I'll still fight him."

    "Oh, dear." She took a deep breath. "Let's try living at the Hall."

    "Thank you, witch-child," he said weakly.

    She wrapped an arm around his waist. "You look a bit wobbly."

    "Then I look better than I feel," he said, draping an arm around her shoulders. "Come along, little witch. The next few days are going to be hectic, and we'll both need our rest."

    8 / Kaeleer

    Saetan opened the front door of SaDiablo Hall and stepped into orchestrated chaos.

    Maids flitted in every direction. Footmen lugged pieces of furniture from one room to another for no reason he could fathom. Gardeners trotted in with armloads of freshly cut flowers.

    Standing in the center of the great hall, holding along list in one hand while conducting the various people and parcels to their rightful places with the other, was Beale, his Red-Jeweled butler.

    Somewhat bemused, Saetan walked toward Beale, hoping for an explanation. By the time he'd taken half a dozen steps, he realized that a walking obstacle had not been taken into account in this frenzied dance. Maids bumped into him, their annoyed expressions barely changing upon recognizing their employer, and their "Excuse me, High Lord," just short of being rude.

    When he finally reached Beale, he gave his butler a sharp poke in the shoulder.

    Beale glanced back, noticed Saetan's stony expression, and lowered his arms. A thud immediately followed, and a maid began wailing, "Now look what you've done."

    Beale cleared his throat, tugged his vest down over his

    girth, and waited, a slightly flushed but once more imperturbable butler.

    "Tell me, Beale," Saetan crooned, "do you know who I am?"

    Beale blinked. "You're the High Lord, High Lord."

    "Ah, good. Since you recognize me, I must still be in human form."

    "High Lord?"

    "I don't look like a freestanding lamp, for example, so no one's going to try to tuck me into a corner and put a couple of candle-lights in my ears. And I won't be mistaken for an animated curio table that someone will leash to a chair so I don't wander off too far."

    Beale's eyes bugged out a bit but he quickly recovered. "No, High Lord. You look exactly as you did yesterday."

    Saetan crossed his arms and took his time considering this. "Do you suppose if I go into my study and stay there, I might escape being dusted, polished, or otherwise rearranged?"

    "Oh, yes, High Lord. Your study was cleaned this morning."

    "Will I recognize it?" Saetan murmured. He retreated to his study and sighed with relief. It was all the same furniture, and it was all arranged the same way.

    Slipping out of the black tunic-styled jacket, he tossed it over the back of a chair, settled into the leather chair behind his desk, and rolled up the sleeves of his white silk shirt. Looking at the closed study door, he shook his head, but his eyes were a warm gold and his smile was an understanding one. After all, he had brought this on himself by telling them in advance.

    Tomorrow, Jaenelle was coming home.

  • Romance | Fantasy | Vampire