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  • Home > Anne Bishop > Black Jewels > Shalador's Lady (Chapter 27)      Page
  • Shalador's Lady(Black Jewels,Book 8)(27) by Anne Bishop
  • Ranon huffed out a breath. “Yeah, that changes a few things, doesn’t it?”

    “It does,” Talon agreed.

    “Changes what?” Theran demanded.

    “Gray is not a boy anymore,” Talon said. “I taught him what I could. Now the High Lord of Hell will teach him the rest. Theran, no one would callthat man ‘uncle’ without being invited to do so. And the simple truth is, he understands Gray better than I do.”

    “Then lethim go looking the next time Gray acts like an ass,” Theran snapped.

    He walked away. Had to. Nothing was the way he’d hoped it would be. This visit to Eyota had shown him just how unsuitable Cassidy was to rule Dena Nehele. She had no sense of style, no sense of decorum, nosense. She was a handyman’s daughter who, through some freak combination of bloodlines, happened to be a Queen.

    He had promised to try to be a good First Escort, but every day the court had spent here had made it harder to keep that promise.

    The problem was there wasn’t any other choice.

    She was wearing a hat. So were Shira and Reyhana, even though their skin wouldn’t burn in the sun the way Cassie’s did.

    She removed the hat and vanished it the moment she reached the shade under the tree, which made him grin.

    “You requested an audience, Prince?” Cassie said.

    Still bitchy. Well, he probably deserved that.

    “Does turning firewood into wood chip mulch work for female temper or just male?” he asked.

    “What?” A moment’s puzzlement. Then her eyes widened as if the question suddenly made sense. “Gray, exactly where did you go today?”

    “I went to see—”Uncle Saetan. Saying that to Talon was a message. Saying it to Cassie might be bragging. “—the High Lord.”


    “You told me to talk to someone.”

    “I know, but . . .” She stuttered over to a chair and sat down. “What did he say?” She raised a hand. “No. Don’t answer. What is said between you is private.”

    He was glad she appreciated that a man needed to keep some thoughts and feelings private—even from the woman he loved.

    “He didn’t say much,” he offered, taking the other chair. “Mostly he taught me how to use Craft and power to change firewood into wood chip mulch.”

    Cassidy looked around. Then she shook her head. “SaDiablo Hall has acres of gardens and interior courtyards, and they all had this woody mulch I thought was wonderful. I remember asking Tarl, the head gardener, where I could find some for my mother’s garden, and he asked if I had a brother. But he never explained further. You don’t think . . . ?”

    Gray snorted. “I filled half a barrel before the High Lord decided I had worked out enough of the temper. I think he’s a practical man whose groundskeepers get a lot of help for free.”

    She laughed, and the sound of it eased something inside him.

    “Do you want to yell at me?” he asked. He saw warmth and humor in those wonderful hazel eyes.

    “I’m thinking about it,” she replied.

    A ritual question and answer, something that belonged to them.

    He held out his hand. She slipped her hand into his without hesitation.

    “We’re heading back to Grayhaven tomorrow?” he asked.

    Cassie nodded. “It’s time. Powell will send some of the Protocol books so Reyhana, Janos, and a few others can start learning the basics.”

    “Janos? I thought he’d be more interested in weapons than books.”

  • Romance | Fantasy | Vampire