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  • Tangled Webs(Black Jewels,Book 6)(120) by Anne Bishop
  • The library door closed with obscene gentleness.

    Saetan felt the tremor run through him and allowed himself to indulge in a moment of queasiness—and sympathy. Daemon had killed before, and he had no doubt Daemon would kill again. But there was something different about a formal execution that was done because duty required it. That was done in a particular way because duty required it.

    Extract the price. Make sure the blood debt was paid in full.

    He didn’t turn when Geoffrey walked back into the room and held out a glass of warmed yarbarah.

    “You didn’t ask him what he did,” Geoffrey said.

    Saetan took the glass of yarbarah and stared at the blood wine for a long moment before he looked at his friend.

    “He’s a mirror, Geoffrey. I didn’t have to ask.”

    Daemon braced his hands on the shower wall and let the hot water flow over him.

    He could no longer count how many of the Blood he had killed in his seventeen hundred years. Some had been a fast slash of temper; others had been exquisitely, hideously slow dances of agony.

    He’d never felt dirty about making a kill. Until today.

    Because it wasn’t personal. The game he’d played with Jenkell? Yes, that was personal. He’d shaped the Sadist into a shadow and let him slip the leash. But the pain and terror he’d wrung from Jenkell during the execution…That hadn’t been for himself. Hadn’t even been for Rainier or Surreal. That had been done for those unknown people he had agreed to protect when he became the Warlord Prince of Dhemlan.

    He hoped with all his heart that it would be decades before he had to do something like that again.

    Since water would get his body clean but wouldn’t cleanse his heart, he finished up and did his best to mentally prepare for the next part of the evening.

    Jazen was waiting for him when he walked back into the Consort’s bedroom.

    “No costume?” Daemon asked, looking at the clothes laid out on the bed.

    “The Lady felt your regular attire would best suit her plans for the evening.”

    Mother Night.

    On the other hand, this was better than he’d expected.

    “Consider yourself off duty for the rest of the evening,” Daemon said.

    “But—”

    “Go. Or you’ll be the next person who volunteers to help with the spooky house.”

    On behalf of his wife, he felt a little insulted at the speed in which Jazen left the room.

    He dressed with care and even added some face paint to subtly enhance his eyes and make his lips more sensual. That wasn’t for his participation in the spooky house; that was for the woman.

    When he opened the connecting door and went into Jaenelle’s bedroom, he was glad he’d made the extra effort. And he was glad there wasn’t another male in this wing of the house because one look at her made him edgy and needy.

    He chained lust, but it simmered in his blood. He chained need and let his senses feast on the woman before him.

    The material looked like watercolors spilled over moonbeams that were then shaped into a gown. So vibrant and yet so delicate—he wasn’t sure if it was real or an illusion. She wore a skin-colored sheath underneath the gown, but that, too, was so sheer he could see the shadows of her ni**les through both layers of cloth.

    He didn’t dare look below her waist because that, he was sure, would bring him to his knees and break his self-control.

    Her golden hair was long again and unrestrained, as it had been before she’d been injured last year. The hair was an illusion, and intriguing, but he was a trifle disappointed that it hid the spot on her neck that he found so enticing.

    He crossed the room and stopped when he was close enough to touch her. But he didn’t touch. Not yet.

    “What do you want from me?” he asked, his voice having more of a seductive edge than usual.Please want something from me.

  • Romance | Fantasy | Vampire