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  • Home > Anne Bishop > Black Jewels > Twilight's Dawn (Chapter 118)      Page
  • Twilight's Dawn(Black Jewels,Book 9)(118) by Anne Bishop
  • “Do you think Sylvia’s father will want the boys to live with him?” Lucivar asked.

    “Maybe. What the boys want will have more weight than any adult.” A trickle of anger pushed aside the weariness. “But I’ll tell you who isn’t going to have the boys. Their sires.”

    “I didn’t think either of them had been granted paternal rights—or wanted them.”

    “They didn’t. But Mikal’s sire has come sniffing around a couple of times in recent months, expressing interest in his son and wanting to become acquainted.”

    “Why?”

    “From what I found out after the first time he came around, his service as a Consort has earned him notoriety rather than the lucrative and illustrious positions he’d envisioned would be his when he walked away from Sylvia and her little village.”

    “And I thought Father was the only one who disliked her former Consorts,” Lucivar said dryly.

    Daemon lowered his hands and rested his head on the back of the seat. “You will never repeat this to Jaenelle, but after that son of a whoring bitch came around a second time, I told Kaelas and Jaal that if he trespassed on any property that belonged to the family—and that included the land around Manny’s and Tersa’s cottages—they had my permission to eat him. I said it within the bastard’s hearing. I haven’t seen him since.”

    Lucivar stared at him for a moment before laughing. “Hell’s fire, Bastard. You do like to dance on the knife’s edge.”

    “Maybe.” Or maybe he felt fairly sure that Jaenelle wouldn’t object too strenuously if she did find out.

    *Prince?*

    *Rainier,* Daemon replied. *Anything to report?*

    *I know why Sylvia’s family was lured down to that place, but I didn’t find out anything that will help you hunt down the bastard. If you and Prince Yaslana are coming back to the Hall, Surreal wants to go back to our house in Halaway and get some sleep. She knows she has a suite at the Hall and I have a suite too, and there’s no point in you reminding her because Beale already has—twice—but she wants to be in the village, closer to Tersa and Manny. Just in case.*

    *All right. I’ll stop by in the morning before I go to the Keep.* He broke the link and closed his eyes. “Can you stay until morning?” he asked Lucivar. “I’ll be heading to the Keep after I talk to Rainier.”

    “I can stay. I’ll check on Tersa and Mikal while you get Rainier’s report. Maybe between us we can give Sylvia a little peace.”

    And maybe by tomorrow he would have a better idea of how to find the bastard who had ended a good Queen’s life.

    FOUR

    Sylvia jerked awake and tried to pull herself out of a memory-dream about Mikal and Tildee. It was during the first year Tildee had lived with them. Mikal had snitched some goody from the kitchen earlier that day and hidden it under his bed for the two of them to have as a treat late that night, not realizing that the treat would spoil if left outside the cold box on a summer day. Tildee had thought it smelled bad, but the boy assured her it was wonderful, so boy and Sceltie had gobbled up the treat.

    She still remembered Mikal’s panicked yells, and running into his bedroom to discover that Tildee had vomited all over his lap. In the seconds it took her to realize the dog was extremely ill and needed healing help from someone who knew kindred, Mikal began throwing up. So there she was, very late at night, pounding on the Hall’s front door, holding a blanket-wrapped Sceltie who was covered in Mikal’s puke, while her court Healer was taking care of Mikal, and Beron was running to fetch Manny and Tersa.

    Jaenelle had taken one look at Tildee, asked what she and Mikal had eaten, and then poured a tonic down the dog’s throat. An hour later, Sylvia was back home with an embarrassed, freshly bathed Sceltie, who was greeted by an equally embarrassed, freshly bathed boy. For a few years after that incident, on the days when Mikal attended the village school, Tildee went up to the Hall for her own kind of lessons.

    The two of them had gotten into their share of trouble since then, but when Tildee told Mikal something was bad, the boy didn’t argue.

    Why would I dream about that now? she wondered. Then she remembered she’d told Tildee to run. The boys!

    Rolling over on her side, Sylvia tried to fling the covers back and push her legs over the edge of the bed, but an arm tightened around her waist.

    “Easy,” Saetan said. “From now on, you have to think before you get out of bed.”

    “The boys!”

    “Are safe. Beron was injured, but he’s at the Hall in Jaenelle’s care. We’ll find out more when Daemon and Lucivar arrive here in a couple of hours.”

    Sylvia shivered. “And Mikal?”

    Saetan’s arm didn’t move from her waist, but the covers settled in place around her. “Tildee grabbed Mikal and didn’t stop running until she got them to Tersa’s cottage. They’re upset, but otherwise they’re fine.”

    “Thank the Darkness.” All her strength seemed to drain away once she knew her sons were safe. She rolled onto her back—and remembered the rest.

    The candle-light in the bedside lamp began to glow softly, providing just enough light for her to see the man who raised himself up on one elbow to look at her.

  • Romance | Fantasy | Vampire