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  • Home > Anne Bishop > Black Jewels > Shalador's Lady (Chapter 148)      Page
  • Shalador's Lady(Black Jewels,Book 8)(148) by Anne Bishop
  • “What?” several men asked.

    “I’ve heard of these authors, but their work was destroyed when the tainted Queens first took control of Dena Nehele,” Powell said. “There might be a few copies of their books hidden in family libraries, but no one has read their stories in a couple of centuries at least.”

    “Maybe someone sent copies of those books to the Keep so they wouldn’t be completely destroyed or forgotten,” Cassidy said.

    A dozen copies of a dozen books—including two novels by Shalador authors Ranon had never heard of. Gray insisted that she have a full set of the books for the Residence’s library and that the loaning library in Eyota be given a full set. Everyone agreed that Gray and Powell could decide what to do with the rest of the copies later.

    *Cassidy?* Reyhana’s call was followed by tapping on the door a moment later. *Maydra says dinner is almost ready, and Dryden said to remind you that we have drumming tonight.*

    *We’ll be out in a few minutes,* Cassidy replied. She wanted a few minutes alone to regain her balance. Her parents and brother were joining her for Winsol here in Eyota. She still had some shopping to do, as well as some social events to attend as the Queen before she could be a daughter for a few days.

    “Is there anything more?” she asked.

    “Nothing that needs your attention,” Gray replied.

    She considered the phrasing and was fairly certain she’d just been asked to leave.

    “Come on, Shira,” she said. “We have drumming tonight, so Maydra is going to serve dinner in a few minutes.”

    “I should—” Shaddo jerked, then gave Gray a sharp look.

    “This won’t take long,” Gray said, smiling at Cassidy.

    Ranon released the Opal lock on the door, and Cassidy and Shira left the room.

    “That man has been spending too much time with Jaenelle’s First Circle,” Cassidy muttered. “He’s starting to sound like them.”

    “Is that bad?” Shira asked as they walked up to their rooms.

    “You couldn’t budge those men with a sledgehammer once they’d set their minds to something.”

    Shira laughed. Foolish woman.

    Going into her room, Cassidy sat on the bed and brushed a finger over the leather cover of the book. Jared and Lia when they were young. Before their world had turned dark and terrible and bloody. She had never found any journals at Grayhaven from Lia’s younger years. Maybe the woman hadn’t started keeping a journal until she was a little older.

    And maybe this would give her a glimpse of the young Queen who, in the last months of her life, had left behind the clues that led to the treasure Cassidy had found.

    She opened the book, then closed it and put it on the bedside table. There was always a quiet afternoon or two during Winsol. That was family tradition. She would save the book for one of those days.

    Gray waited until Ranon restored the Opal lock on the room. Then he faced the men who formed the First Circle. “A few months ago, Theran told me straight out he intended to break the court and set up Kermilla as the Queen of Dena Nehele.”

    “When the sun shines in Hell,” Archerr snarled. “I’ve already had my fill ofthat bitch.”

    “Since then, I’ve been going up to the Keep once a week to study with the High Lord, and sometimes Daemon and Lucivar as well. They gave me the training needed to stand as a Queen’s First Escort. This was the last time. By their standards, I’m qualified to serve in a court.”

    Silence. Then Talon snorted. “If you meet their standards, no one here is going to dispute your credentials.”

    The rest of the men nodded.

    “I was also given this.” He called in the paper and set in on the table in front of Powell and Talon.

    “Mother Night,” Powell said after reading it through twice. “I didn’t know anyone could write something so devastatingly courteous.”

    “Who did write this?” Talon asked.

    “The High Lord. Daemon said Saetan was very exact about the Protocol used to demote a member of the court for failure to fulfill his duties.”

    “This holds Theran to his contract with the court, but it also strips him of the title of First Escort and ends his status as part of the Queen’s Triangle.” Powell looked at Gray. “The moment you sign a contract with Cassie, the court stands, with or without Theran.”

  • Romance | Fantasy | Vampire