Almost immediately, I found the red door into the library. I opened it idly- and the breath stopped in my throat. It was the same room I remembered: the shelves, the lion-footed table, the white bass-relief of Clio. But now, tendrils of dark green ivy grew between the shelves, reaching toward the books as if they were hungry to read. White mist flowed along the floor, rippling and tumbling as if blown by wind. Across the ceiling wove a network of icy ropes like tree roots. They dripped- not little droplets like the ice melting off a tree but grape-sized drops of water, like giant tears, that splashed on the table, plopped to the floor.
immediately quotesfound quotesred quotesdoor quoteslibrary quotesopened quotesidly quotesbreath quotesstopped quotesthroat quotesroom quotesremembered quotesshelves quoteslionfooted quotestable quoteswhite quotesbassrelief quotesclio quotestendrils quotesdark quotesgreen quotesivy quotesgrew quotesreaching quotesbooks quoteshungry quotesread quoteswhite quotesmist quotesflowed quotesfloor quotesrippling quotestumbling quotesblown quoteswind quotesceiling quoteswove quotesnetwork quotesicy quotesropes quotestree quotesroots quotesdripped quotesdroplets quotesice quotesmelting quotesgrapesized quotesdrops quoteswater quotesgiant quotestears quotessplashed quotesplopped quotesfloor quotes
You deserve all that and more. It made me happy to see you suffer. I would do it all over again if I could.' I realized I was shaking as the words tumbled out of me. 'I would do it again and again. Every night I would torment you and laugh. Do you understand? You are never safe with me.' I drew a shuddering breath, trying to will away the sting of tears. He opened his eyes and stared up at me as if I were the door out of Arcadia and back to the true sky. 'That's what makes you my favorite.' He reached up and wiped a tear off my cheek with his thumb. 'Every wicked bit of you.
deserve quotesmade quoteshappy quotessuffer quotescould quotesrealized quotesshaking quoteswords quotestumbled quotesi quotesnight quotestorment quoteslaugh quotesunderstand quotessafe quotesme quotesdrew quotesshuddering quotesbreath quotessting quotestears quotesopened quoteseyes quotesstared quotesdoor quotesarcadia quotesback quotestrue quotessky quotesthats quotesmakes quotesfavorite quotesreached quoteswiped quotestear quotescheek quotesthumb quotesevery quoteswicked quotesbit quotes
I remembered Ignifex's smirk and his confident words: I can wait all I want and still have you. And I thought, Here is one thing he isn't getting. Standing on my toes, I kissed Shade on the lips. It was just a bump of my face against his. Despite Aunt Telomache's lecture, I had no idea how long to prolong a kiss, and his lips startled me, foreign and cool as glass. But then he caught me under the chin and gently kissed my mouth open. Though his lips were still cool, his breath was warm; as he kissed me. I breathed in time to him, until I felt like my body was only a breath of air mixing with his.
remembered quotesignifexs quotessmirk quotesconfident quoteswords quoteswait quotesthought quotesthing quotesstanding quotestoes quoteskissed quotesshade quoteslips quotesbump quotesface quotesaunt quotestelomaches quoteslecture quotesidea quoteslong quotesprolong quoteskiss quoteslips quotesstartled quotesforeign quotescool quotesglass quotescaught quoteschin quotesgently quotesmouth quotesopen quotescool quotesbreath quoteswarm quotesbreathed quotestime quotesfelt quotesbody quotesair quotesmixing quotes
She dared to cry? On this day of all days? I was the one who would be married at sunset, and I hadn't let myself cry in five years. There was ice in my lungs and in my heart. I was floating. I was swept away, and out of the cold I spoke to her in a voice as soft as snow, the gentle and obedient voice I had used to consent to every order that Father and Aunt Telomache ever gave me, every order that they would never give Astraia because they actually loved her. "You know, that Rhyme is a lie that Aunt Telomache only told you because you weren't strong enough to bear the truth." I had thought the words so often, they felt like nothing in my mouth, like no more than a breath of air, and as easily as breathing I went on. "The truth is, Mother died because of you, and now I have to die for your sake, too. And neither one of us will ever forgive you." Then I shoved her aside and strode out of the room.
dared quotescry quotesday quotesdays quotesmarried quotessunset quotescry quotesyears quotesice quoteslungs quotesheart quotesfloating quotesswept quotescold quotesspoke quotesvoice quotessoft quotessnow quotesgentle quotesobedient quotesconsent quotesorder quotesfather quotesaunt quotestelomache quotesgave quotesgive quotesastraia quotesloved quotesrhyme quoteslie quotestold quotesstrong quotesbear quotestruth quotesthought quoteswords quotesfelt quotesmouth quotesbreath quotesair quoteseasily quotesbreathing quotestruth quotesmother quotesdied quotesdie quotessake quotesforgive quotesshoved quotesstrode quotesroom quotes
And you would know so much about women, locked up in your castle." "Locked up with eight wives. And sometimes I make house calls for my bargainers. There's many a lovely woman desperate enough to bargain with me." This idea had never occurred to me before. "You touch another woman and I'll cut your hands off, " I snapped. He looked delighted. "I thought you were afraid of hurting me.
women quoteslocked quotescastle quoteslocked quoteswives quotesmake quoteshouse quotescalls quotesbargainers quoteslovely quoteswoman quotesdesperate quotesbargain quotesidea quotesoccurred quotestouch quotescut quoteshands quotessnapped quoteslooked quotesdelighted quotesthought quotesafraid quoteshurting quotes