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  • Home > Anne Bishop > Black Jewels > Twilight's Dawn (Chapter 39)      Page
  • Twilight's Dawn(Black Jewels,Book 9)(39) by Anne Bishop
  • She had died in this house, killed by Hekatah SaDiablo shortly before Jaenelle unleashed her full power and cleansed the Realms of the tainted Blood.

    A young Warlord named Palanar had also died here at Hekatah’s hand. He’d been at the service fair, along with many other Eyriens, hoping for a better life. He’d barely had a taste of that future before it had been taken away from him.

    The only consolation was that Hekatah and Dorothea SaDiablo had finally been destroyed and couldn’t take anyone’s future away again.

    Lucivar released his breath in a white-plumed sigh.

    Land and house no longer held any memories of those deaths, or the violence that came after, but he did—and always would.

    He didn’t bother to circle the house. If something needed fixing, he wouldn’t see it in the dark. So he tramped through knee-deep snow to the corner of the property where a stand of trees whispered forest. Dark, bare limbs entwined with the night sky until it looked like stars were caught in the branches.

    His house now, one of the properties his father had assigned to his care after Saetan stepped back from the living Realms and retired to the Keep. He could sell it. Hell’s fire, he could burn the damn thing to the ground and no one would challenge the choice.

    Maybe that was why he could keep it.

    He sensed Surreal’s presence the moment she took the first step onto this land, but he decided not to notice until she told him she was there.

    “Do you have any happy memories connected to this place?” Surreal’s voice came out of the dark a few heartbeats later, enhanced by Craft to reach him.

    “None, actually,” he replied, also using Craft. “Luthvian and I rarely remained civil to each other through a whole visit.”

    “Then why keep it?”

    “The house belongs to the family. I’m responsible for it.”

    “Doesn’t have any sentimental value to me. I could lob a ball of witchfire through a window and give it enough power to burn this place from attic to cellar.”

    He laughed softly as he turned toward her. “Thanks for the offer, but I’m going to keep the place intact for the time being.” He tramped back to the house, where she waited.

    “Why?” She sounded genuinely curious.

    “It’s a good, solid structure that was built as a Healer’s House. Plenty of land with it for gardens. Doun could use another Healer.”

    “So you’re thinking of renting it to a Healer?” Surreal asked.

    He shrugged, then said quietly, “Or maybe find a teacher with backbone and heart and turn it into a residence for children who need a safe place.”

    He shifted, not comfortable talking about an idea he hadn’t voiced to anyone else, not even Marian.

    “So,” Surreal said. “You want to tell me why I’m staying at The Tavern?”

    “Because I’m saving the guest room at the eyrie as punishment if you start whining about the training you need,” he replied.

    He studied her face, then opened his inner barriers enough to get a taste of her psychic scent.

    Hunter. Predator. Assassin. That surprised him—and intrigued him.

    “If you don’t like it, you’re free to choose another place,” he said, watching her carefully.

    “Those stairs aren’t going to be easy on Rainier’s leg,” she said.

    “He can float up and down them the same as he’s been doing at his residence in Amdarh.”

    “All right, Yaslana. Let’s stop dancing. Is there some reason you want a knife under Merry’s roof?”

    He blinked. Took a step back. “How in the name of Hell did you come up with an idea like that?”

    “Tiger Eye and Summer-sky running a very public business. You wandering in at least once a day. Makes me wonder if Merry and Briggs need that kind of protection. Makes me wonder if you wanted protection there that wouldn’t be so obvious.”

  • Romance | Fantasy | Vampire