• Home
  • Directory
  • Popular
  • Authors
  • Series
  • Home > Anne Bishop > Black Jewels > Shalador's Lady (Chapter 176)      Page
  • Shalador's Lady(Black Jewels,Book 8)(176) by Anne Bishop
  • “That’s not necessary.”

    “Yes, it is.”

    They walked halfway back before Theran spoke. “How did it go so wrong?”

    “Everyone wants the same thing. They just aren’t seeing the same answer,” Talon replied.

    “I’m worried about what’s going to happen to Gray.”

    “Jared Blaed can take care of himself.”

    “Why did he have to do this now?”

    “He’s following his heart. Isn’t that what you’re doing?”

    “That’s not the same.”

    “No one ever thinks it is.”

    They didn’t speak again until they reached the landing web.

    “Take care of yourself, boy,” Talon said.

    “Talon . . .” What could he say to keep the people who mattered to him out of harm’s way? “Cassidy isn’t going to be ruling for much longer.”

    A long silence. Then Talon said quietly, “No, Cassidy isn’t going to be ruling Dena Nehele for much longer.”

    CHAPTER 39


    She looks tired,Ranon thought as he watched Cassidy enter the meeting room and take her seat between him and Gray. Of course, they were all tired, but this past week seemed to drain spirit as well as energy from their Queen.

    A week of meetings, a week of talking—a week where he’d watched strong men struggle with a fear bred from hope.

    Gray had shown the steel in his spine and his potential to be a leader. The other Warlord Princes had seen it too, and Ranon wondered how much that would sway opinions.

    The rest of the First Circle drifted into the room, looking alert enough, despite the early hour. Cassie had chosen this dawn meeting so that Talon could be with them and hear Powell’s report at the same time as the rest of the First Circle.

    Talon took his seat opposite Gray, then nodded to Powell.

    The Steward looked pale but excited as he laid five letters on the big meeting table.

    “The five southern Provinces have agreed to join the Shalador reserves to create a new Territory,” Powell said. “All the District Queens and the Warlord Princes who are ruling on behalf of our Queen support the court’s decision to break away from Dena Nehele and build the kind of life we want in a land ruled by the Queen we have chosen to serve.”

    The men around the table released their breath in a collective sigh. Exhilaration and trepidation. None of them wanted war, but all of them were willing to step onto as many killing fields as it would take to buy freedom for the people they loved.

    “I’ve drafted a document,” Powell said, looking at Ranon and Gray.

    “We’ll take it up to the Keep this afternoon and ask the High Lord to review it,” Gray said.

    “Until we know how Theran and his Lady are going to react to this news, everyone goes out in tandem,” Talon said. “And you Ladies are to have an escort with you at all times.”

    “But—” Shira said.

    “Alltimes.” Talon stared at Shira until she nodded. “We can’t afford to lose either of you—or Reyhana. You’ll do what we need so that we can do what Shalador Nehele needs.”

    “That’s fair,” Cassidy said, sounding too subdued for Ranon’s liking. “You should remember to talk to the Scelties about helping to guard the Queen’s square.”

  • Romance | Fantasy | Vampire