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  • Home > Anne Bishop > Black Jewels > Queen of the Darkness (Chapter 19)      Page
  • Queen of the Darkness(Black Jewels,Book 3)(19) by Anne Bishop
  • *Won't this Council send a demand for some kind of discipline?*

    *They'll send it. The Steward will read it, probably show it to the Master of the Guard, and then they'll ignore it.*

    Daemon realized his breathing was too quick, too shallow, but he couldn't change it as he forced himself to ask the next question. *Will they show it to your Queen?*

    *No,* Lucivar said slowly. *They won't mention this to the Queen if they can avoid it. And if they can't, they'll try to minimize it without lying outright.*

    *Why?*

    *Because the Dark Council has pushed her before, and the results scared the shit out of everyone.* Lucivar shifted. "We're away from Goth," he said, raising his voice slightly. "Make yourselves as comfortable as you can. It'll be a couple of hours before we get to where we're going."

    "Aren't we going to Ebon Rih?" someone asked.

    "Not yet." Lucivar stepped into the small corridor, forcing Daemon to move back. He slid the door to the private compartment open, said, "Inside," and went through the doorway sideways to accommodate his wings.

    Daemon followed reluctantly and slid the door closed.

    Lucivar stood at one end of the room. Daemon remained at the door.

    Lucivar took a deep breath, let it out slowly. "I'm sorry I lashed out at you. I wasn't angry withyou. I—Damn it, Daemon, I checked every list I could think of, and I must have missed your name. If it wasn't for blind luck, you would've ended up in another court, and there might have been no way to get you out of that contract."

    Daemon felt one layer of tension ease. He forced his lips to curve in a smile. "Well, luck favored us this time." Then he looked, really looked, at Lucivar, and the smile became genuine. "You're alive."

    Lucivar returned the smile. "And you're sane."

    Daemon felt a tremor run through his body and tightened his self-control. Tears stung his eyes. "Lucivar," he whispered.

    He didn't know which of them moved first. One moment they were standing as far away from each other as they could in the small room, the next they were in each other's arms, holding on as if their lives depended on it.

    "Lucivar," Daemon whispered again, pressing his face against his brother's neck. "I thought you were dead."

    "Hell's fire, Daemon," Lucivar said softly, hoarsely, "we couldn't find you. We didn't know what happened to you. We looked. I swear, we did look for you."

    "It's all right," Daemon stroked Lucivar's head. "It's all right."

    Lucivar's arms tightened around him so hard his ribs ached.

    Daemon's hand fisted in Lucivar's hair. "Lucivar ... I know there are things that need to be settled between us. But can we put them aside, just for a little while?"

    "We can put them aside," Lucivar said quietly.

    Daemon stepped back. Using his thumbs, he gently wiped the tears from Lucivar's face. "We'd better join the others." He turned and reached for the door.

    Standing behind him, Lucivar's left hand gripped Daemon's left arm. Daemon placed his right hand over it for a moment. As his fingers slid away from Lucivar's, he looked down, and the significance of what he'd seen but hadn't reallyseen finally hit him.

    "Daemon," Lucivar said urgently. "There's one thing I need to tell you. I think you may already know, but you need to hear it."

    She's alive!Another tremor went through Daemon's body. "No," he said. "Not now." He slid the door open and stumbled into the corridor. Barely keeping his balance, he went into the bathroom and Black-locked the door. His body shook violently. His stomach twisted viciously. Leaning over the sink, he fought the need to be sick.

    Too late.

    If he had tried to find her five years ago, when he'd first returned from the Twisted Kingdom, maybe it would have been different. If he had searched for the High Lord and at least tried to find out what had really happened that night at Cassandra's Altar...

    Too late.

    He could hold on. Hewould hold on. His mind was far more fragile than he allowed anyone to realize. Oh, it was intact. He had lost a few memories, a few small shards of the crystal chalice, but he was whole, and he was sane. But the healing would never be complete because he had lost the one person he needed to complete it. It hadn't mattered when he had only wanted to stay in one piece long enough to destroy the High Lord. It didn't really matter now. He could survive long enough to see her, just once.

    There was nothing else he could do. If it had been any other man, he would have used everything he was and everything he knew in order to be her lover. If it had been any other man. But not Lucivar. He wouldn't become his brother's rival.

  • Romance | Fantasy | Vampire