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  • Home > Anne Bishop > Black Jewels > Queen of the Darkness (Chapter 148)      Page
  • Queen of the Darkness(Black Jewels,Book 3)(148) by Anne Bishop
  • Lucivar nodded. He felt a cold sweat forming on his skin.

    "Palanar grabbed one of Marian's arms. He kept saying, 'I'm sorry, I'm sorry.'"

    "Did he see you?" Lucivar asked too quietly.

    Jillian shook her head. "But Marian did. She looked right at me, and her face had the same sick look that Palanar's did, and she said, 'Luthvian's.' Then they left." Having finished her report, her confidence faded as she looked up at the grim-faced men.

    "You didn't report this to anyone?" Lucivar asked.

    Pale now, Jillian shook her head again. "I—Nurian wasn't home when I got back, and ... I didn't know I was supposed to report," she finished in a barely audible voice.

    And would have been reluctant to go to one of the warriors and be casually dismissed because she was female. A few months of living in Kaeleer weren't enough to overcome survival tactics that had been learned from the time she had gotten out of the cradle.

    "When a warrior sees something strange, he—or she-should report to—her—superiors," Hallevar said in a firm but gentle voice. "That's one of the ways a young warrior gains experience."

    "Yes, sir," Jillian whispered.

    "That was a fine first report, Jillian," Lucivar said. "Now go back to your chores."

    Jillian's shoulders went back. Her eyes shown with pleasure. "Yes, sir."

    None of them spoke until the girl had gone back inside.

    "Sounds like a compulsion spell," Falonar said quietly.

    "Yes," Lucivar replied grimly, "it does. Falonar, keep an eye on things here."

    "You're going to Luthvian's?" Hallevar asked quickly as Lucivar stepped away from them. "Then I'm going with you."

    "No, you're not," Falonar said. "Kohlvar, you bring everyone up close to the eyries. Hallevar, you have the most influence with the youngsters. Keep a tight leash on them."

    "And where will you be?" Lucivar asked too softly.

    Falonar squared off to face him."I'm going with you."

    They found Palanar on the ground outside the kitchen door.

    "I'll look after him," Falonar said. "You go on."

    Calling in his Eyrien war blade, Lucivar kicked open the kitchen door and lunged into the room. The stink inside gagged him, reminded him too strongly of carrion.

    Thatthought catapulted him through the other downstairs rooms. Finding them empty, he surged up the stairs. He kicked the bedroom door open—and saw Luthvian. He probed the room swiftly to make sure no one was waiting for the moment when he dropped his guard, then he knelt beside the body.

    At first he thought she was still alive. The wounds he could see were bad, but there would have been more blood if she had bled out. When he brushed her hair away from her neck, he saw why there wasn't a lot of blood.

    He rested a hand on her head. All right. The body was dead, but she was strong enough to make the transition to demon-dead. If there was any sign that she was still there, fresh blood would strengthen her.

    He probed cautiously so that he wouldn't punch through her inner barriers and inadvertently finish the kill.

    Just outside her inner barriers was an odd little bubble of power. He paused, considered. The bubble had a feeling of emotional warmth that made him suspect. It wasn't the sort of feelings he associated with Luthvian. But there was nothing he could detect that made him believe he would be in danger, so he brushed a psychic tendril against it, lightly.

    Lucivar... I was wrong about Marian. You chose well. I wish you both happy.

    Tears stung his eyes. He brushed against the inner barriers. They opened with no resistance. He searched for her, searched for the least little flicker of her spirit. Nothing.

    Luthvian had returned to the Darkness.

    One tear spilled over. "Hell's fire, Luthvian," he said in a broken voice. "Why did you have to wait until you were dead to tell me that? Why—"

  • Romance | Fantasy | Vampire