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  • Tangled Webs(Black Jewels,Book 6)(125) by Anne Bishop
  • As they crossed the threshold, Surreal looked back.

    Daemon leaned against the fireplace mantel, smiling at her with warm amusement. Then the door closed.

    "Surreal," Rainier said.

    A small table had been positioned near the door, its top covered by a woven basket full of wood shavings. Sitting in the basket was a skeleton mouse waving bye-bye to the guests.

    That explained the nervous laughter. Jaenelle, Marian, and Tersa had provided a last bit of whimsy to soften the frightening truth that danced in that beautiful sitting room.

    "Hell’s fire," Surreal muttered.

    Two boys were reaching for the skeleton mouse, and something about their expressions and the way they stood indicated an intention to damage the illusion in some way.

    She took a step toward the boys, ready to smack some manners into their nasty little-boy heads.

    "Wait," Rainier said.

    The two shadow Scelties suddenly appeared behind the boys and…

    “Ow!” the boys cried. They hurried toward a knot of adults. “Those dogs bit us!”

    A man—father?—looked at the shadows, who were now wagging their tails. “Don’t be silly,” he said. “Those are illusions. They can’t bite you.”

    One of the boys turned toward the shadows, hauled back, and kicked with enough force it would have lifted a real dog off its feet. His foot went right through the shadow.

    But Surreal saw a gleam in the dogs’ eyes that made her knees go weak.

    As the adults followed the ghostly guide up the stairs for the first part of the tour, the shadow Scelties moved in on the boys, nipping and herding until they had their quarry cornered. And there those boys would stay, missing the tour. Since the landen adults believed the illusions couldn’t touch anyone, the Scelties were free to carry out their own brand of discipline.

    Surreal and Rainier looked at the Scelties, then looked at each other and said in unison, “Now,that’s scary.”

  • Romance | Fantasy | Vampire