Blood Feud Page 64

“Are you sorry you didn’t get to kil Greyhaven yourself?” I asked quietly.

She considered that and final y shook her head slowly. “No.

I guess that doesn’t make me much of a warrior, does it?”

“I wouldn’t say that.” I snorted. “Dogs and magic mists are a hel of a battle strategy.” I reached for her hand, weaving my fingers through hers. “You’re stil staying for the coronation?”

“Oui. ”

I looked at her. She sighed a little. “How do you do that?”

“Do what?”

“No one else in the world has ever seen me the way you have, not even Kala. You saw what I was. Before.” I knew she was remembering those rooftops too. “And yet you stil look at me as if I matter, as if I’m somehow precious.”

“You are precious,” I insisted. “Stubborn and secretive and independent to a fault, but precious.”


I thought she might be blushing. “I love you, Isabeau.” She was definitely blushing now. She blinked at me. I just stared back patiently. “Come on, the bones said we’re meant for each other,” I reminded her.

“Who told you that?”

“Magda. She doesn’t hate me quite as much as she used to.”


I smiled. “Don’t be scared, Isabeau.”

“I’m not scared,” she insisted indignantly.

“Oh, please. One little ‘I love you’ has you al freaked out. No sword or stake or slavering dog-beast can get you that pale and stiff.”

She seemed to fight a short battle inside herself, one I could only watch. I didn’t have the weapons to help her. Only she had them.

“You have a point, I suppose.” She unfisted her hands. “And what is a warrior but someone who faces her fears and defeats them?” She swal owed. “Je …” She swal owed again. “Je t’aime.”

I’d never known the kind of bone-deep satisfaction I knew right then and there. I lifted our joined hands to my mouth, kissing her knuckles.

“That wasn’t so hard, was it?” I asked hoarsely.

She smiled. “I suppose not.”

She lay back down next to me, our sides touching, her hair fluttering over my arm, smel ing like leaves and berries. We lay under the stars for a long time.

“Wil you visit me in the caves?” she whispered final y. “After the ceremonies and the council meetings are through?”

“Of course.”

“Even though everyone wil disapprove?”

I pushed up on my elbow. Her eyes were so green they nearly glowed. “I couldn’t care less what everyone else thinks.” I lowered my head, my mouth hovering over hers. “Besides … ,” I grinned slowly. “Think of it as intertribal negotiations.” She touched my jaw, smiling back, softly, lightly. “As handmaiden, it is my duty to foster a good relationship between the Cwn Mamau and the royal family.”

“Exactly.” I closed the last inch between us and kissed her.

And when she kissed me back we weren’t a prince and a handmaiden, weren’t Drake and Hound, weren’t anything or anyone but Logan and Isabeau. Together.

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