• Home
  • Directory
  • Popular
  • Authors
  • Series
  • Home > Anne Bishop > Black Jewels > Tangled Webs (Chapter 74)      Page
  • Tangled Webs(Black Jewels,Book 6)(74) by Anne Bishop
  • “She’s dead,” he said, getting to his feet.

    “What…” Kester swallowed hard. “What do we do with her?”

    Rainier waited a beat. “We have to leave her.”

    They looked at him.

    “Wecan’t just leave her,” Sage said.

    “You’re welcome to carry her,” he replied, retrieving the oil lamp. “I won’t.”

    “So what are you going to do?” Kester asked.

    Rainier tipped his head toward the wall. “Anax was searching for something. I’m going to find it.”

    There was water. Not as rusty as she’d expected, which maybe wasn’t a good sign, since it meant someone had been using this bathroom on a regular basis recently. Of course, the Black Widows would have needed it before someone helped them into the first stage of being dead.

    Surreal frowned at the toilet. Did the demon-dead need to pee? When they drank yarbarah, was there anything wasted, or did they absorb it all to sustain the dead flesh and their power?

    Too bad she’d never thought to ask when she’d known some of them.

    And what about Guardians like Uncle Saetan? He used to eat meals with the family, at least some of the time. So did he…?

    “No,” she told herself firmly. If the High Lord of Hell did something so mundane as park his ass on a toilet, she did not want to know about it.

    Besides, she had more immediate things to think about.

    She turned sideways, her back to the bathtub, and studied the bathroom door. Should she close it and turn the lock to avoid a surprise attack from the hallway, or leave it open to give herself a fast way to escape?

    “Don’t close yourself in a box,” she muttered, sucking in a breath as she removed her jacket. The shirt came next. She dropped both on the closed toilet seat. Then she braced the front of her thighs against the sink and stood on tiptoes to see her torso in the mirror.

    Hell’s fire. The blood was running between her skin and the shield, so she couldn’t actually see the extent of the damage—and couldn’t tell if the bleeding would stop on its own or if the wounds were something she needed to tend.

    "Rainier?" she called as she lowered her feet.

    No answer.

    Dropping the shield would be one use of Craft. Restoring it, another. Calling in her kit of healing supplies, a third. Then another choice: vanish the kit and, therefore, close another exit, or leave it behind and hope she wouldn’t need it again.

    She couldn’t reach Rainier. Would he hear the gong that signaled she’d used Craft? How many exits had they closed? How many were left?

    If there had been any to start with.

    It was ingenious, really. If this had been a story, she would have been intrigued, would have appreciated the struggle to avoid using Craft. Would have argued with Rainier about how and when Craft should have been used.

    Since it wasn’t a story, she was going to find the bastard who created this place and skin him, using nothing but a dull paring knife. Then she would crush all his bones into pebbles, leaving the spine and skull for last to be sure he got the benefit of all the pain. Andthat would bebefore Uncle Saetan got hold of him.

    “Nice thought, sugar,” she told her reflection, “but you have a few things to do first.”

    She called in the kit of healing supplies, swearing silently when she heard the gong. Taking the small pair of scissors from the kit, she cut off both sleeves of her shirt, then cut one sleeve in half. The jacket and shirt were hung on the bathroom doorknob. The healing kit was placed on the toilet lid.

    She turned on the water in the sink and soaked one piece of cloth. No hot water, and she wasn’t going to use Craft for an indulgence, so she gritted her teeth against the shock of cold water on her skin as she dropped the protective shield and washed off the blood.

    Up on tiptoes again to see the wounds as she cleaned that area.

    Not too bad, she decided after a moment. A double swipe along her ribs from the bitch’s nails. Deep enough that the wounds did need to be cleaned and sealed, but…

    Dropping down again, Surreal frowned at her reflection. Why a double swipe? Why didn’t the Black Widow hit her with all four nails,especially the ring finger that had the snake tooth and the venom sac under the normal nail?

  • Romance | Fantasy | Vampire