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  • Home > Anne Bishop > Black Jewels > Tangled Webs (Chapter 59)      Page
  • Tangled Webs(Black Jewels,Book 6)(59) by Anne Bishop
  • “We’re trapped in here,” she said. “Someone played a nasty trick on all of us, and we’re trapped in here until we find one of the secret ways out. Until we get out, you do as you’re told. If we tell you to stay away from something, you stay away from it.”

    “Why can’t you do your witch stuff to get us out?” Kester asked belligerently.

    “We can’t. That’s part of the trap.”

    “I guess the Blood aren’t so special after all,” Ginger said, glancing at Kester.

    “If that’s what you think, why were you so eager to see this place?”

    No answer. She didn’t expect one.

    She looked at Rainier. “Let’s try the back rooms before going upstairs.” Which would also give her a little more time to recover from the backlash. If Rainier heard her puffing after she’d climbed one set of stairs, he’d know she still wasn’t breathing properly.

    He joined her. “It would be easier to get everyone out if we’re still on the first floor—providing the exits are actually doors and windows that are meant to let us out of the house.”

    “What else would they be?” Surreal asked.

    “Exits from the game. What if ‘exit’ simply means the game ends and the spells go dormant so that doors and windows do work?”

    “Then any kind of opening that a person could walk through—”

    “Or crawl through,” Rainier said.

    Oh, she didn’t want to think about that, not when the odds were good that any space that required crawling would also have something nasty waiting for them. “—or crawl through might be an exit.”


    She considered the possibilities in the parlor again and shook her head. Nothing there. At least, nothing she could sense. Too bad she wasn’t interested in training to be a Black Widow, despite her interest in poisons. Maybe she could have…

    “Hey,” she said. “Do you think a Black Widow would be able to feel more than we can? Would someone else from the Hourglass be able to see these spells or sense them? Or eliminate them?”

    The arrested look on Rainier’s face told her he hadn’t considered that. “Maybe,” he said slowly. “A Black Widow might have been able to recognize where the spells were to avoid triggering them.”

    “Then why—” She stopped and switched to a psychic thread. "If that’s the case, why would anyone invite Sadi?"

    "We don’t know he was invited." He shrugged when she just looked at him. "I don’t think there is anyone beyond Jaenelle’s friends and the Dhemlan Queens who know he’s a Black Widow. But I don’t see your point."

    "I’m wondering if whoever created this game counted on one of us being a Black Widow—or if he’d counted on none of his guests being part of the Hourglass. Are we missing things we should be seeing?"

    “Mystery books.” Rainier raked his fingers through his hair.

    “Sometimes there are clues that aren’t recognized when they’re first seen.”

    “And maybe we’re basing our assumptions on our own intelligence instead of considering the intelligence of whoever put this together.” Surreal grabbed one of the lamps and headed for the door. “Let’s take a look at the next room. Gather up the sheep.”

    “Our enemy seems to be fairly intelligent,” Rainier said, raising his voice over the children’sbaa ing and snickers.

    She stopped in the doorway and looked at him. “Do you think so? Wouldyou want to give Yaslana and Sadi a reason to be coming after you?”

    Bitch. She’d actually given him a shiver down his spine. But he’d covered his tracks. They wouldn’t find him. Even when his next book came out, they wouldn’t connect Jarvis Jenkell, renowned author from Little Terreille, with the tragedy that took place in a landen village in the middle of Dhemlan.

    But because she’d given him that momentary shiver, he really hopedLady Surreal was the person who found the first big surprise.

    Power and temper blew the message-station door open, almost ripping it from its hinges, but the Station Master held his ground behind the counter as the Warlord Prince of Dhemlan strode across the room. The gold eyes were glazed—a warning to everyone that a Warlord Prince was riding the killing edge—and that beautiful face was a cold, cold mask.

    The Prince placed a piece of paper on the counter, folded and sealed with the SaDiablo crest pressed into the bloodred wax. “Assign your fastest messenger to deliver this. Send him now.” He turned and walked away. As he reached the door, he added, “And may the Darkness have mercy on you if that message doesn’t reach my brother in time.”

    The Station Master’s hand shook as he picked up the paper and read the name and location of delivery just to be sure. Not that he had any doubt aboutwho was supposed to receive the message. Then he looked at the young men watching from the doorway of the room where they sorted through their messages or waited for an assignment.

  • Romance | Fantasy | Vampire