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  • Queen of the Darkness(Black Jewels,Book 3)(147) by Anne Bishop
  • *Dying won't save you, little warrior,* the witch said. *I am the Dark Priestess. You can't escape me that way.*

    His hand dropped to his side, empty.

    *Nowgo !*

    Palanar spread his wings and flew as fast as he could to do what a warrior would not do.

    It wasn't the wind in his face that made him weep.

    11 / Kaeleer

    Lucivar landed at his eyrie, and shouted, "Marian!" Where in the name of Hell was the woman? he thought as he strode toward the door. She should have arrived at the Keep hours ago.

    He walked through the door, saw the neat pile of traveling bags. His heart stopped for a moment. By the time he felt it beat again, he had risen to the killing edge."Marian!"

    The eyrie was a big place, but it didn't take him long to give it a thorough search. Marian and Daemonar weren't there. But she had packed, so what had prevented her from leaving? Maybe Daemonar was ill? Had she taken him over to Nurian's eyrie to have the Healer look at him?

    As the Warlord Prince of Ebon Rih, his eyrie was set a little apart from the other eyries nestled in the mountain, but it was only a couple of minutes before he landed in front of Nurian's home. Before his feet touched the ground, he knew they weren't there.

    "Lucivar!"

    Lucivar turned as Hallevar hurried up to him. He noticed Falonar and Kohlvar as they walked out of the communal eyrie that was as close as Eyriens came to having inns and taverns. Both men, hearing the agitation in Hallevar's voice, moved toward him.

    "Have you seen that pup, Palanar?" Hallevar asked.

    Before Lucivar could respond, Falonar jumped in. "Didn't you send him to escort Lady Luthvian to the Keep?"

    "I did," Hallevar said grimly. "And told him to get his ass right back here." He looked at Lucivar. "I wondered if he might be dawdling at the Keep to dodge some chores."

    "Palanar didn't arrive at the Keep. Neither did Luthvian. Neither did Marian and Daemonar," Lucivar added too quietly.

    The other men stiffened.

    "I sent him first thing this morning," Hallevar said.

    "Any sign of trouble at your eyrie?" Falonar asked sharply.

    "No," Lucivar said. "The bags were packed and set near the door." He swore softly, viciously. "Where in the name of Hell did she go?"

    "She went to Lady Luthvian's," said a young female voice.

    They all turned and stared at Jillian, Nurian's young sister.

    She hunched her shoulders and looked ready to bolt back into the eyrie.

    Hallevar pointed a finger at the ground a few feet away from him. "Here, little warrior," he said sternly.

    Scared now, Jillian crept to the spot, glanced at the large warriors surrounding her, then stared at her feet.

    "Make your report," Hallevar said in that tone that, although encouraging, had made every young male who had trained under him snap to attention.

    It had the same effect on Jillian. She stood upright and focused on Hallevar. "I was doing my stamina run this morning." She waited until she got Hallevar's approving nod. "And I thought I would take the path to Prince Yaslana's eyrie because I thought, well, maybe Lady Marian would want a little help with Daemonar, that I could look after him for a bit so she could get some of her chores done. It wasn't like I was shirking the rest of my workout or anything, 'cause looking after Daemonaris work."

    Despite being worried, Lucivar's lips twitched as he fought not to smile.

    "I was almost there when I saw Marian standing at the door talking to Palanar. He looked... sick. He was sweating hard, and ... I don't know. I've never seen anyone look like that. And then Marian jerked like someone had hit her, but Palanar didn't touch her. He said, 'Bring the boy.' She went inside and came back out with Daemonar.

    Daemonar took one look at Palanar and started howling. You know, that sound Daemonar makes when he doesn't like something?"

  • Romance | Fantasy | Vampire