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  • Home > Anne Bishop > Black Jewels > Queen of the Darkness (Chapter 26)      Page
  • Queen of the Darkness(Black Jewels,Book 3)(26) by Anne Bishop
  • "You were crying. I thought you were hurt. Look, I just want to know ahead of time if you're going to get weepy over it."

    "When Jaenelle read it, I'll bet you didn't barge in on her when she got weepy."

    Lucivar eyed the book as if it had just grown fangs. "Oh.That book." He curled an arm protectively over his belly. "Actually, I did barge in on her. Her aim was better than yours."

    Marian's growl turned into a laugh. "Poor Lucivar. You try so hard to protect the women in the family, and we don't show our appreciation, do we?"

    Lucivar grinned. "Well, if there are any interesting love scenes in that story, mark the pages and you can appreciate me in a few days."

    Marian glanced at Daemon and blushed.

    Lucivar gently kissed her, then stepped aside to let her pass. "Get into bed now."

    "I'll see you tomorrow, Daemon," Marian said a little shyly.

    "Good night, Lady Marian," Daemon said. It was all he could manage.

    They watched her until she went into her and Lucivar's suite, then Lucivar reached out. Daemon stiffened, rejecting the touch.

    Dropping his hand, Lucivar said, "The High Lord's suite is just down this corridor. He'll want to see you."

    Daemon couldn't move. "I thought you married Jaenelle."

    "Why would you think I married Jaenelle?"

    The surprise in Lucivar's voice woke Daemon's temper. "You were here," he snarled. "Why wouldn't you want to marry her?"

    Lucivar didn't say anything for a long minute. Then, quietly, "That was always your dream, Daemon. Not mine." Turning, he walked down the corridor. "Come On."

    Daemon followed slowly. When Lucivar stopped and knocked on a door, he kept walking, drawn to the strong, dark, feminine psychic scent'coming from a room on the opposite side of the corridor.

    "Daemon?"

    Lucivar's voice faded, muted by a powerful tide of emotions.

    Daemon opened a door and walked into a sitting room. One wall had built-in bookshelves above a row of closed, waist-high wooden cabinets. A couch, two triangular side tables, and two chairs formed a bracket of furniture around a long, low table. A pair of sinuous, patinaed lamps sat on the side tables. Next to one chair was a large basket full of skeins of wool and silk and a partially completed piece of needlework. A desk sat in front of the glass doors that led out to the balcony. A tiered stand filled with plants occupied one corner.

    The psychic scent washed over him, through him. Oh, he remembered that dark scent. But there was something different about it now, something delicately, deliriously musky.

    His body tightened, then swelled with male interest before his mind understood the significance of that difference. Then he noticed the sapphire slippers near one chair. A woman's slippers.

    Against all reason, despite all desire, even when he had thought that Lucivar had married her, he hadn't fully absorbed the fact that she was no longer the child he had known. She had grown up.

    The walls of the room faded to gray, then darkened and began to close in, forming a tunnel around him.

    "Daemon."

    He remembered that deep voice, too. He had heard it amused. He had heard it full of rage and fierce power. He had heard it hoarse and exhausted. He had heard it plead with him to reach up, to accept the help and strength being offered.

    Turning slowly, he stared at Saetan. The Prince of the Darkness. The High Lord of Hell. His father.

    Saetan extended his hand, with its slender fingers and long, black-tinted nails. "Daemon... Jaenelle is alive," he said softly.

    The room shrank. The tunnel kept closing. The hand waited for him, offering strength, safety, comfort—all the things he'd rejected when he'd been in the Twisted Kingdom.

    "Daemon."

    He took a step forward. He raised his hand, with its slender fingers and long, black-tinted nails. This time, he feared his own fragility. This time, he would accept the promises Saetan offered.

  • Romance | Fantasy | Vampire