• Home
  • Directory
  • Popular
  • Authors
  • Series
  • Home > Anne Bishop > Black Jewels > Shalador's Lady (Chapter 157)      Page
  • Shalador's Lady(Black Jewels,Book 8)(157) by Anne Bishop
  • Gray glanced at the other men. “I think we’ll do that.”

    “Gentlemen.” She tipped her head, a small courtesy bow to indicate respect. “Happy Winsol.”

    She walked back to the kitchen and found Shira and Reyhana sitting at the table with Devra and Maydra. All of them had cups of coffee, and there were two cookies left on a plate.

    “We saved these two for you,” Shira said.

    Cassidy took one and chewed slowly. “Maydra, could you make another batch of these?”

    “We’ve made enough for all the households to share, Daughter,” Devra said.

    “I’d like to send them to someone as a special gift,” Cassidy said.

    Maydra nodded. “We’ve got enough ingredients for one more batch. I can do that after dinner tonight. Didn’t make anything fancy for the evening meal, after all the baking this afternoon.”

    “Gray and Ranon are dining out with Ferall and Hikaeda,” Cassidy said. “And Powell is out this evening.”

    “Your father is going to eat with his apprentices so they can keep working for a few hours longer,” Devra said. “Since it’s just the women tonight, there’s no reason we can’t cook as we please.”

    Cassidy took the last cookie. “That’s settled then.”

    “A word with you, Cassie?” Talon asked.

    Cassidy turned away from the dining room. “Of course.”

    They went into the parlor. Now that they had privacy, he didn’t seem eager to speak.

    “You’ve got your family here for Winsol,” he finally said.

    She nodded. “My brother Clayton is coming tomorrow to be with us.”

    “You still have half the court here, so you’ll be looked after.”

    He was tiptoeing around something. “Talon, it’s Winsol. The next few days are social and fun. I don’t need looking after.”

    “There are some who do,” he said quietly. “I wanted your consent to be gone for a few days. Thing is, the mountain passes still need to be guarded, so there are still men in the rogue camps. Some of them are there because they see that as their duty to Queen and land. Some of them are there because they’d seen too much when the twisted Queens ruled here, and they haven’t found the courage yet to come down to the villages.”

    “Oh, Talon.” Cassidy’s eyes filled with tears.

    “Now, don’t be doing that, Cassie. Don’t. It’s not as bad as you’re thinking. And it’s better this year than it’s been in a long time. Thing is, I trained a lot of those boys, so I’ve always made it a point to spend a little time in each of those camps around Winsol Eve and Winsol.”

    “Then you should do that.” Cassidy blinked away the tears. “Why didn’t you tell me this sooner? We could have done something for them.”

    “It’s been done. First Circle took care of it. Guess we should have told you, but you were already doing plenty.” Talon smiled. “Gray made up a bundle of books for each camp. Good entertainment on winter nights. Got new blankets and other supplies to pass out. Got baked goods and casseroles, fruits and coffee. Got a bit of a feast for each camp. They’ll already be making some of their own; this will add to it.”

    “I’m glad. Do you know how many men are still up there?”

    Talon shook his head. “Some went down to their home villages for a while, then went back into the mountains. I’ll have a better idea once I’ve seen the camps.”

    “You’ll leave tomorrow?”

    “As soon as the sun sets.”

    “Powell is out this evening, so I’ll talk to him tomorrow morning and see what can be spared from the tithes for quarterly wages.”

    “Wages? For what?”

    Cassidy lifted her chin. “You said they’re guarding the passes for Queen and land. To me that sounds like they work for the court. And if they work for the court, they get paid by the court.”

  • Romance | Fantasy | Vampire