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  • The Shadow Queen(Black Jewels,Book 7)(12) by Anne Bishop
  • Saetan considered that and nodded. “Then we’ll arrange to have him brought to the Hall. How soon do you want me to discover your whereabouts?”

    Daemon huffed out a laugh. “Since you’re my father, you’d know where to find me.”

    “Oh, he doesn’t know I’m your father. As far as Prince Theran is concerned, I’m just the assistant historian/librarian. Just a ‘pissy old cock.’ ” Saetan’s smile turned feral and sharp. “The boy doesn’t shield his thoughts as well as he should.”

    Oh, shit. “Arrange to have him arrive at the Hall late this afternoon.”

    “Done.” As if trying to shake off the mood—and the temper—Saetan looked at the table and raised an eyebrow. “I see you enjoyed the sweet-cheese confection.”

    Damn. He must not have vanished the bowls fast enough.

    “Even so,” Saetan continued, “you should eat some of the beef and vegetables.”

    An undercurrent of amusement. A fatherly kind of amusement.

    Feeling like a boy wasn’t as much fun when he didn’t choose to feel like a boy. And feeling like an erring son was downright uncomfortable. “I just meant to taste it.”

    “Hmm.” Saetan pulled out a chair and sat down. He took a spoonful of vegetable casserole and a slice of roast beef, and warmed his customary goblet of yarbarah, the blood wine that was all the sustenance the demon-dead—and Guardians—needed.

    Not seeing any options, Daemon sat across from his father and filled his own plate.

    “There’s been very little of interest in those piles of papers,” Saetan said. “Even with the preservation spells that were put on them, most are illegible or the parchment crumbles when it’s touched. But I did find a few things—like the recipe for that sweet-cheese confection. Well, the basic idea for it at any rate. I had to fiddle with it a bit and embellished it after that.”

    Daemon chewed a mouthful of beef and swallowed carefully. “You made that?”

    “Yes. Like you, I enjoy puttering in the kitchen on occasion.”

    “And you’re the only one who has the recipe?”


    They stared at each other.

    Finally Daemon asked,“What are the chances of you sharing that recipe?”

    His father, the too-knowing bastard, just smiled.


    Ebon ASKAVI

    Aroom within the Keep held one of the thirteen Gates that connected the three Realms of Terreille, Kaeleer, and Hell. On the Dark Altar stood a four-branched candelabra. When the black candles were lit and the spell was invoked, a stone wall turned to mist and became a Gate between the Realms.

    Following the assistant historian/librarian, Theran stepped out of that mist into a room that looked almost the same as the one he’d just left, but it felt different. It felt darker.

    He had reached Kaeleer, the Shadow Realm. He was really here.

    And home had never felt so far away.


    Stepping out of the Coach that had brought him from the Keep to this place,Theran stared at the massive structure of dark gray stone that rose up in front of him. It sprawled over the land, and its towers speared the sky. Its size intimidated, and the feel of age and dark power that surrounded it was sufficient warning to any visitor that a smart man walked softly around anything that lived behind those walls.

    “Is that an enclosed community?” he asked. He could understand the feeling of that much power if several hundred Blood had lived in a place for many generations. There had been a few places “ruled” by covens in the Shalador reserves that had a similar feel. Or so he’d been told. Most of those places—and the strong witches who had lived in them—hadn’t survived the purges that had been ordered a few years ago by Dorothea’s pet Queens.

    “Like a village, you mean?” the Coach driver said. Then he made a sound that might have been an effort not to laugh. “No. The village is that way.” He pointed in the opposite direction. “This here is a private drive until you reach the bridge. After that, it becomes a public road to Halaway.”

    “Private . . .” He was looking at a residence? That feeling of dark power came from one family?

  • Romance | Fantasy | Vampire