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  • Home > Anne Bishop > Black Jewels > Tangled Webs (Chapter 65)      Page
  • Tangled Webs(Black Jewels,Book 6)(65) by Anne Bishop
  • A sound in the passageway.

    Rainier grabbed one of the pokers and moved toward the sound. She slipped her stiletto out of the boot sheath and waited.

    The children scuffled into the kitchen, looking scared and defiant. She understood both feelings, but right now defiant wasn’t going to make Rainier warm up to them.

    When no one said anything, she walked over to the farthest door and opened it cautiously.

    Nothing fell out or sprang at her. In fact, she had no idea what the little room was used for. She closed that door and tried the next one. Pantry. That was promising—especially when she saw a few canning jars on the shelves. She closed that door too, then tried the last one, on the other side of the kitchen.

    The moment she touched the doorknob, she felt uneasy. “Rainier.”

    He came over and settled into a fighting stance. She opened the door slowly, prepared to resist anything that tried to push it open fast.

    Nothing.

    As she pulled the door all the way open, Rainier took a cautious step forward. Then another.

    “Looks like we found the way down to the cellar,” he said.

    A vibration in the doorknob, in the door’s wood, as he took another step closer to the top of the stairs.

    “If we were in a book,” he began.

    “One of us would be dumb enough to take a candle and go down into the dark, scary cellar, where something would be waiting to gut the dumb one.” The doorknob rattled, pulling against her hand. “Rainier, get away from there!”

    He spun and leaped clear just as the doorknob yanked out of her grasp and the door slammed shut.

    “And the dumb person, having reached the bottom of the stairs when the door mysteriously slams shut…,” Rainier said.

    “Is not only locked in with one of the Bad Things, he’s also in the dark because thewhoosh of air blows out the candle.”

    Rainier raised his eyebrows. “He?”

    She smiled at him. “Of course the dumb one is a male.”

    “Of course,” he replied sourly. But he smiled.

    She took one of the chairs that were around the kitchen table and wedged it under the doorknob. When she looked at Rainier, he was no longer smiling. “There’s a spell on that door,” she said.

    She saw his hesitation, his frustration. He wanted to Craft-lock that door and keep the nastiness that was hiding in the cellar locked in the cellar.

    She glanced at the children. They’d come closer to the table—and the available light—but still hadn’t said anything.

    Back to the pantry. Neither of them sensed any power or Craft around that door, but Rainier still braced himself against the door to hold it open, and she didn’t argue with him.

    She slipped the stiletto under her belt, took two jars off the shelves, and returned to the table. Using her jacket sleeve, she wiped off the jars, then held one closer to the candles to get a good look at what was inside. “Peaches.”

    How long had the jars been there? How long did canned fruit last? Not much dust on them. The witches who had created this place would have wanted food handy in case they got hungry. Most likely, these were leftover supplies.

    Using the tip of her stiletto, she pried the lid open on one jar. Thepop of the seal breaking was a good sign, so she picked up the jar and sniffed. Smelled like peaches, but…Was she getting a whiff of something else?

    After wiping her stiletto on her trousers, she poked at the peach slices on top.

    “Why are you poking those with that dirty old knife?” Ginger said.

    “Mind your tone, girl,” Rainier growled. Then he added on a psychic thread, "Whyare you poking around? The seal was good, wasn’t it?"

    "It was good," Surreal replied. "But do you really want to trust a good seal when there were three Black Widows in this house?"

  • Romance | Fantasy | Vampire