Read The Chronicles of Elantra 5 - Cast in Silence Online

Authors: Michelle Sagara

Tags: #General, #Epic, #Fiction, #Romance, #Fantasy

The Chronicles of Elantra 5 - Cast in Silence (58 page)

BOOK: The Chronicles of Elantra 5 - Cast in Silence
7.06Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

“So…no gates. Guards?”

Morse snorted. “We’re better put to use watching carpenters and their supplies, apparently.” She added, “Not that he needs us. We’re there to stop people from doing something so stupid he has to kill them, as far as I can tell.”

Kaylin shook her head. “But it’s good work?”

“It’s boring work. Except for the feral runs. But…I can live with the boring. I thought—” She shook her head. “Doesn’t matter. You asking me if I’m happy?”

Kaylin shrugged. “Not really.”

“Good. You may have forgotten, but happy is not one of my strong suits.” She walked ahead for half a block, and then slowed enough that Kaylin and Severn could catch up without running. Turning the corner, they came to the Tower.

Morse was right. There was no gate. No fences. No guardhouse. There was a garden—if you could call it that—but it was an odd tangle of plants that did not look to Kaylin’s admittedly ignorant eye like flowers or the usual things you found on the lawns of the powerful and the mighty.

“Don’t ask,” Morse told her.

“Those are—are those carrots? Please tell me I’m not seeing carrots.”

“Fine.”

“What are they
doing
here?”

“Apparently an ‘open experiment’. I don’t think the Lord was fond of the idea, but the Lady was really taken by it. She wants to see what will grow here, if she puts her mind to it. If it’s useful, she wants to see how far across the fief she can encourage things to grow. Those were her words. Swear to gods, he doesn’t say no to her if she asks for anything.

“I’m just grateful all she’s asking for is a patch of dirt and few seeds. That building there, the one that looks like it’s made of glass? It’s hers.”

“It’s not glass?”

“You try breaking it. Once. After you ask permission first.” Morse grinned. She was right: she wasn’t
good
at being happy. But if this new life disagreed with her, it was hard to see how.

“This is where you found me,” Kaylin said softly.

“Yeah. That was a day. Feral runs then, too—but those were more risky.” A brief smile twisted her lips and faded. “Come on. Door’s over here.”

“It has a door?”

“Well, two. The usual.”

“And it’s just a door?”

“You have a problem with doors?”

“Not normal ones, no.” Kaylin walked up the path between rows of orderly plants; they fell away, revealing flat, pale stone that eventually became stairs. The stairs were long, the rise low; she climbed them, pausing to glance at the building that now seemed to rise, in a more regular form, around the base of the Tower. The doors led to that.

She glanced at Morse, who looked at her as if she were insane, and then looked for a knocker or something; the doors were over ten feet in height, and they weren’t exactly narrow. She didn’t need one, though; before she could actually touch the doors, they began to roll inward.

Standing between them, were Tiamaris and Tara. Lord and Lady. Tara was wearing what looked like gardening clothing, however. She smiled at Kaylin, and there was nothing shy or hesitant in her smile; she was quietly, peacefully, happy. “There are no wards,” she told Kaylin, before Kaylin could speak.

“She did not believe you liked them. I can’t imagine why,” Tiamaris added, with the hint of a smile. “However, she insisted that they not be part of the functioning visitor’s door. She likewise rejected a portal, although I believe that
is
traditional.”

Kaylin hesitated for just a minute, and then she walked quickly to Tara and wrapped her arms around her in a brief, tight hug. Tara returned it; there was nothing insubstantial or ghostly about her arms, now. “Take care of him,” Tara whispered, before they parted.

Of course. Tara couldn’t leave the fief. Tiamaris had to do so.

But there was no fear of abandonment on the avatar’s face.

Tiamaris reached up and gently brushed strands of hair from her forehead.

“Morse,” he said, without looking at Morse. “Remain with her until I return.”

“Oh, good!” Tara said. “Morse, you can help me! And you can tell me the rest of the story.”

Morse froze. Kaylin kept her face as expressionless as possible, mostly because Morse with wounded dignity wouldn’t generally think twice about causing damage.

“It’s not that kind of story,” Morse muttered to Kaylin out of the corner of her mouth. “It’s a real one, about some stupid kid who gets lost in the fiefs, and stays. But…she seems to like it.”

“She would,” Kaylin replied. “It could be about her, in a way. If she’s happy, it will be good for the fief.”

“Like I care about the fief.” But Morse went where Tara led.

And when they were out of sight, Tiamaris said, “Thank you.”

Kaylin started to ask him for what, and stopped herself; they would have been just words. “Ready to face the Emperor?”

“Are you?”

“No.”

“Good. You are there to escort me. You are not actually expected to attend the Court session. You are, however, expected to wait until it’s done. Corporal Handred, on the other hand, is expected to attend.” He laughed at the expression that flitted across Kaylin’s face as she tried to choose between relief and irritation.

“We have plans for the fief,” he said, as they began to walk. “But we hope, in the end, it will be a place that you would have been happy to grow up in.”

She felt some tiny part of her unclench and relax, and she began to ask him what, and why, and how, as they walked, and she didn’t even mind when he got all technical and half his words went straight over her head.

CAST IN SILENCE

ISBN: 978-1-4268-3757-9

Copyright © 2009 by Michelle Sagara

All rights reserved. Except for use in any review, the reproduction or utilization of this work in whole or in part in any form by any electronic, mechanical or other means, now known or hereafter invented, including xerography, photocopying and recording, or in any information storage or retrieval system, is forbidden without the written permission of the editorial office, Worldwide Library, 233 Broadway, New York, NY 10279 U.S.A.

This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, events or locales is entirely coincidental.

This edition published by arrangement with Harlequin Books S.A.

® and TM are trademarks of Harlequin Books S.A., used under license. Trademarks indicated with ® are registered in the United States Patent and Trademark Office, the Canadian Trade Marks Office and in other countries.

www.LUNA-Books.com

Table of Contents

CHAPTER 1

CHAPTER 2

CHAPTER 3

CHAPTER 4

CHAPTER 5

CHAPTER 6

CHAPTER 7

CHAPTER 8

CHAPTER 9

CHAPTER 10

CHAPTER 11

CHAPTER 12

CHAPTER 13

CHAPTER 14

CHAPTER 15

CHAPTER 16

CHAPTER 17

CHAPTER 18

CHAPTER 19

CHAPTER 20

CHAPTER 21

CHAPTER 22

CHAPTER 23

CHAPTER 24

CHAPTER 25

CHAPTER 26

CHAPTER 27

CHAPTER 28

CHAPTER 29

EPILOGUE

BOOK: The Chronicles of Elantra 5 - Cast in Silence
7.06Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

Other books

Anila's Journey by Mary Finn
Michael Walsh Bundle by Michael Walsh
Devlin's Justice by Patricia Bray
Shades of Gray by Jackie Kessler
Shift by Kim Curran
Murder on Show by Marian Babson