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  • Home > Anne Bishop > Black Jewels > Twilight's Dawn (Chapter 137)      Page
  • Twilight's Dawn(Black Jewels,Book 9)(137) by Anne Bishop
  • Watching. Studying. And then knowing.

    “When was the last time you drank a glass of yarbarah, Prince SaDiablo?” Daemon asked softly.

    Saetan tensed at the choice of title but didn’t correct it.

    “When was the last time you had any fresh blood?”

    Saetan turned to face him. “I haven’t had yarbarah or fresh blood since the day after my daughter died.”

    “That was seventeen years ago.” A chill went through Daemon, but he couldn’t tell if it was temper or fear. “You haven’t drunk yarbarah or fresh blood for seventeen years?”

    It began making sense—the slow decline, the absence of the Black Jewels that Saetan no longer wore, his seldom being available anymore during daylight hours.

    “You’re changing from Guardian to demon-dead, aren’t you? You’ve lied to us for seventeen years?”

    Saetan’s eyes glazed with temper. “I don’t have to explain myself to you.”

    “Oh, yes, you do. And we both know why, don’t we, Prince SaDiablo?”

    “Yes, we both know why,” Saetan replied with a snarl. “But I’m not the only one who has kept a secret, am I, High Lord?”

    Daemon rocked back on his heels. Then he glided from one end of the sitting room to the other, too restless to stand still.

    “I didn’t want that for you,” Saetan said quietly. “I didn’t expect that from you. To manage the family estates, yes. But not that.”

    “I am my father’s son,” Daemon said just as quietly as he glided past. “Is that why you’ve let yourself decline? Because I intruded?”

    “No, Daemon. No. Witch was the daughter of my soul. She was the reason I became a Guardian and extended my years for so long. I never intended to live beyond her.”

    When he reached his father again, Daemon stopped. “But it’s different now. You have children who still need you, grandchildren who need you.”

    “The same can be said for every father who loves his children. We all die—and we all have to let go, both the dead and the living.”

    It’s not fair! But that was a boy’s cry, a response to losing someone he loved. The man who had been cautiously exploring Hell for the past few decades understood why the dead needed to be kept away from the living most of the time.

    “How long before you make the transition to demon-dead?” Daemon asked.

    “A few months.”

    “And how long after that before the final death?”

    Saetan hesitated. “A few years.”

    “A dozen or more?”

    “A handful or less.”

    So damn hard to breathe. Why was it so hard to breathe? “Are you going to tell Lucivar?”

    Saetan closed his eyes for a moment. “And confirm what he’s already guessed? If you think it will help him accept it, then I will.”

    “Whether he accepts it or not, you owe it to him.” Daemon took another turn around the room. “Why didn’t you tell us?”

    “Do you want the truth?”

    “Of course I want the truth!”

    “I didn’t tell Lucivar because I didn’t want to spend a couple of decades fighting with him over a choice that is mine to make—and that is as much a part of living as every other choice. I wanted to enjoy the time I could have with him and Marian and Daemonar.”

  • Romance | Fantasy | Vampire