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  • Home > Anne Bishop > Black Jewels > Twilight's Dawn (Chapter 44)      Page
  • Twilight's Dawn(Black Jewels,Book 9)(44) by Anne Bishop
  • “So is this.”

    All kinds of messages in those three words. And he hadn’t forgotten what he’d been told about the attack on the Eyriens here two years ago. Hallevar had made light of it at the time to spare the girl’s feelings, but Jillian had killed her first man that day, putting an arrow in the bastard’s heart. That had been the main reason he’d let her continue an informal kind of training after it became clear that the other women wanted no part of that training.

    “Has anyone tried to hurt you, Jillian?”

    She hesitated. “Not here.”

    Not here could explain why Nurian had made the decision to take her younger sister and emigrate to Kaeleer.

    “Practice and training are done in the morning,” Jillian said.

    True enough, but this morning just proved that being around the men wasn’t the right time for Jillian’s training, not if Falonar was going to snap and snarl the whole time the girl was with them.

    He closed his wings and lowered his hand. “You go on to school now. You tell the teacher you’re late because I kept you. If she has a problem with that, she can talk to me.”

    “But . . .”

    “If you don’t give me any sass about this, I will figure out how to work in some regular, formal training for you.” Especially now, when the girl might be a good working partner for both Surreal and Rainier.

    Jillian’s shoulders relaxed. She smiled shyly. “Yes, sir.”

    He stepped aside and watched her run out of the eyrie, her steps light. Then he walked over to his next problem, who looked ready to tear out his throat with her teeth.

    With her black hair and sun-kissed brown skin, Surreal looked like a beautiful woman from Dhemlan or Hayll—until a man noticed the delicately pointed ears. They were an indication, and warning, of her other bloodline. Just as he had a dual heritage of Hayllian and Eyrien but was Eyrien in every way that counted, Surreal was Dea al Mon, one of the Children of the Wood. They were a fiercely private and feral race who lived closer to the land than any other humans. And because they seemed to be born knowing what to do with a knife, they were deadly.

    He wasn’t afraid of Surreal—he was a Warlord Prince and his Jewels outranked hers—but he never forgot the Dea al Mon side of her nature when he dealt with her temper.

    That didn’t mean he wouldn’t give her a kick in the ass if she needed one.

    He braced one hand near Surreal’s head and, again, opened his wings and curved them to provide some privacy.

    “You dismissed her because she doesn’t have balls,” Surreal said.

    “That’s insulting,” Lucivar said. “You should know me better than that.”

    She stared at him.

    He blew out a breath. “I sent her to school, which is where a girl her age belongs.”

    “And the training she wants?”

    “I’ll work that out somehow, although you might not be as happy with your training schedule because of it.”

    The angry heat faded from her gold-green eyes, replaced by reluctant amusement.

    “Now, I’ve got a wife at home who started the day by puking and shitting herself. I expect my son will start puking and shitting any minute, which I’m sure will delight my father to no end. So we can do your training assessment here or in the front room of my eyrie, where you’ll most likely get to participate in today’s adventures.”

    “Those are my choices?”

    “Yeah. Those are your choices.”

    “In that case, sugar—”

    “Go easy, now!” Hallevar said sharply.

    Lucivar’s head whipped around toward the other men. He’d heard the clack of sparring sticks, but he hadn’t paid attention to a usual sound when he had a Gray-Jeweled witch in front of him brimming with anger.

    Too late, he thought, seeing Falonar connect with the sparring stick Rainier held and knowing how a man would step in response to that move. He reached out with Craft as Rainier’s leg gave out, intending to catch the man and stop the fall that would cause more damage to already damaged muscle and bone. But his power tangled with Sapphire power, fouling his and Falonar’s attempts to stop the fall.

  • Romance | Fantasy | Vampire