“There are some questions that shouldn't be asked until a person is mature enough to appreciate the answers.”
“A woman with an education may be able to spend more time sitting in a chair instead of lying on her back. A sound advantage, I should think.”
“We are what we are. Nothing more, nothing less. There is good and evil among every kind of people. It's the evil among us who rule now.”
“Do you always ask me the same questions you ask him?"
"It depends on whether or not I get an answer.”
“We know how it ends practically before it starts. That's why stories appeal to us. They give us the clarity and simplicity our real lives lack.”
“Mother Night and May The Darkness Be Merciful!”
“Daemon had written: "What do you do when she asks a question no man would give a child an answer to?"
Saetan had replied: "Hope you're obliging enough to answer it for me. However, if you're backed into a corner, refer her to me. I've become accustomed to being shocked.”
“Perhaps not willingly, but pain can make a man do things he wouldn't willingly do.”
“Once, he’d been the Seducer, the Executioner, the High Priest of the Hourglass, the Prince of the Darkness, the High Lord of Hell.
Once, he’d been Consort to Cassandra, the great Black-Jeweled, Black Widow Queen, the last Witch to walk the Realms.
Once, he’d been the only Black-Jeweled Warlord Prince in the history of the Blood, feared for his temper and the power he wielded.
Once, he’d been the only male who was a Black Widow.
Once, he’d ruled the Dhemlan Territory in the Realm of Terreille and her sister Territory in Kaeleer, the Shadow Realm. He’d been the only male ever to rule without answering to a Queen and, except for Witch, the only member of the Blood to rule Territories in two Realms.
Once, he’d been married to Hekatah, an aristo Black Widow Priestess from one of Hayll’s Hundred Families.
Once, he’d raised two sons, Mephis and Peyton. He’d played games with them, told them stories, read to them, healed their skinned knees and broken hearts, taught them Craft and Blood Law, showered them with his love of the land as well as music, art, and literature, encouraged them to look with eager eyes upon all that the Realms had to offer—not to conquer but to learn. He’d taught them to dance for a social occasion and to dance for the glory of Witch. He’d taught them how to be Blood.
But that was a long, long time ago.”
“No, Daemon,” Jaenelle said gently, looking up at him with her ancient, wistful, haunted eyes. “Everyone knows I’m different. It just doesn’t matter to some—and it matters a lot to others.” A tear slipped down her cheek. “Why am I different?” Daemon looked away. Oh, child. How could he explain that she was dreams made flesh? That for some of them, she made the blood in their veins sing? That she was a kind of magic the Blood hadn’t seen in so very, very long? “What does the Priest say?” Jaenelle sniffed. “He says growing up is hard work.” Daemon smiled sympathetically. “It is that.”
“Dancing was the only activity he enjoyed with a woman, and he regretted that court dancing was no longer in vogue. If you want to bed a woman, do it in the bedroom. If you want to seduce her, do it in the dance.”
“Seven hundred years ago, Tersa had told [Daemon] the living myth was coming. Seven hundred years of waiting, watching, searching, hoping. Seven hundred heartbreaking, exhausting years. He refused to give up, refused to wonder if she’d been mistaken, refused because his heart yearned too much for that strange, wonderful, terrifying creature called Witch.
In his soul, he knew her. In his dreams, he saw her. He never envisioned a face. It always blurred if he tried to focus on it. But he could see her dressed in a robe made of dark, transparent spidersilk, a robe that slid from her shoulders as she moved, a robe that opened and closed as she walked, revealing bare, night-cool skin. And there would be a scent in the room that was her, a scent he would wake to, burying his face in her pillow after she was up and attending her own concerns.
It wasn’t lust—the body’s fire paled in comparison to the embrace of mind to mind—although physical pleasure was part of it. He wanted to touch her, feel the texture of her skin, taste the warmth of her. He wanted to caress her until they both burned. He wanted to weave his life into hers until there was no telling where one began and the other ended. He wanted to put his arms around her, strong and protecting, and find himself protected; possess her and be possessed; dominate her and be dominated. He wanted that Other, that shadow across his life, who made him ache with every breath while he stumbled among these feeble women who meant nothing to him and never could.
Simply, he believed that he had been born to be her lover.”
“She's magic, Cassandra. A single flower blooming in an endless desert.”
“Too much power. Too much. Even the Blood weren’t meant to wield this much power. Even Witch had never controlled this much power. This one did. This young Queen. This daughter of his soul. With effort, Saetan steadied his breathing. He could accept her. He could love her. Or he could fear her. The decision was his, and whatever he decided here, now, he would have to live with.”
“Jaenelle opened her mouth, closed it, and finally said timidly, “Do you think, when I’m grown up, I could wear an outfit like that?” Daemon bit his cheek. He didn’t know whether to laugh or cry. Buying time, he looked down at himself. “Well,” he said, giving it slow consideration, “the shirt would have to be altered somewhat to accommodate a female figure, but I don’t see why not.” Jaenelle beamed. “Daemon, it’s a wonderful hat.” It took him a moment to admit it to himself, but he was miffed. He stood in front of her, on display as it were, and the thing that fascinated her most was his hat. You do know how to bruise a man’s ego, don’t you, little one? he thought dryly as he said, “Would you like to try it on?” Jaenelle bounced to the mirror, brushing against him as she passed.”
“Daemon pulled the bright, deep-red sweater over his head and adjusted the collar of the gold-and-white-checked shirt. Satisfied, he studied his reflection. His eyes were butter melted by humor and good spirits, his face subtly altered by the relaxed, boyish grin. The change in his appearance startled him, but after a moment he just shook his head and brushed his hair. The difference was Jaenelle and the incalculable ways she worried, intrigued, fascinated, incensed, and delighted him. More than that, now, when he was so long past it, she was giving him—the bored, jaded Sadist—a childhood. She colored the days with magic and wonder, and all the things he’d ceased to pay attention to he saw again new. He grinned at his reflection. He felt like a twelve-year-old. No, not twelve. He was at least a sophisticated fourteen. Still young enough to play with a girl as a friend, yet old enough to contemplate the day he might sneak his first kiss. Daemon shrugged into his coat, went into the kitchen, pinched a couple of apples from the basket, sent Cook a broad wink, and gave himself up to a morning with Jaenelle.”
“Sometimes I ask lots of people the same question.” His head hurt. “What do you do if you don’t get the same answer?” “Think about it.”
“Because you’re going to help me train a seven-year-old Witch who’s got the raw power right now to turn us both into dust and yet”—he dropped the shoe onto the chair—“is abysmal at basic Craft.”
“He brought his other foot to the ground and gingerly tested his ankle. It would be a little sore, but it was still sound. He kept his back half turned from her as he ground his teeth, waiting for the insolent giggle he’d heard in so many other courts when he’d been maneuvered into looking foolish. He was furious for failing, furious because of the sudden despair he felt that she would think him an inadequate companion. He had forgotten that Jaenelle was Jaenelle. “I’m sorry, Daemon,” said a wavering, whispery voice behind him. “I’m sorry. Are you hurt?”
“Only my pride,” Daemon said as he turned around, his lips set in a rueful smile.
“Lady?” Then, alarmed. “Lady! Jaenelle, no, darling, don’t cry.” He gathered her into his arms while her shoulders shuddered with the effort not to make a sound. “Don’t cry,” Daemon crooned as he stroked her hair. “Please don’t cry. I’m not hurt. Honestly I’m not.” Since her face was buried against his chest, he allowed himself a pained smile as he kissed her hair. “I guess I’m too much of a grown-up to learn magic.”
“No, you’re not,” Jaenelle said, pushing away from him and scrubbing the tears off her face with the backs of her hands. “I’ve just never tried to explain it to anyone before.”
“Well, there you are,” he said too brightly. “If you’ve never shown anyone—” “Oh, I’ve shown lots of my other friends,” Jaenelle said brusquely. “I’ve just never tried to explain it.” Daemon was puzzled. “How did you show them?” Instantly he felt her pull away from him. Not physically—she hadn’t moved—but within. Jaenelle glanced at him nervously before ducking behind her veil of hair. “I…touched…them so they could understand.”
“Jaenelle leaned over the narrow window seat, gulping in the winter air. “It hurts so much to live here, Daemon,” she whimpered as he cradled her in his arms. “Sometimes it hurts so much.”
“Shh.” He stroked her hair. “Shh.”
“*No,* he said gently when her words finally stopped, *they don’t want you. They don’t love you, can’t love you. But I do love you. The Priest loves you. The beautiful ones, the gentle ones—they love you. We’ve waited so long for you to come. We need you with us. We need you to walk among us.*”
“He couldn’t regret Daemon’s and Lucivar’s existence, but he’d tortured himself for centuries with reports of what had been done to them." - Saetan”
“Jaenelle peered into the space between the chair arms. “Saetan?” she said in a small, quivery voice. “Saetan, are you all right?”
Using Craft, Saetan sent the top chair back to the blackwood desk. “I’m fine, witch-child.” He stuffed his feet into his shoes and gingerly stood up. “That’s the most excitement I’ve had in centuries.”
“Really?” He straightened his black tunic-jacket and smoothed back his hair.
“Yes, really.” And Guardian or not, a man his age shouldn’t have his heart gallop around his rib cage like this. Saetan looked around the study and stifled a groan.”
“Even a strong child, a powerful child, would be dependent on the adults around her. If her strength could unnerve him, how would her people, her family, react if they ever discovered what was contained inside that small husk? Would they accept the child who already was the strongest Queen in the history of the Blood, or would they fear the power? And if they feared the power, would they try to cut her off from it by breaking her? A Virgin Night performed with malevolent skill could strip her of her power while leaving the rest intact. But, since her inner web was so deep in the abyss, she might be able to withdraw far enough to withstand the physical violation—unless the male was able to descend deep enough into the abyss to threaten her even there. Was there a male strong enough, dark enough, vicious enough? There was…one." - Saetan”
“Coldness as a defense for the heart was something Saetan understood all too well.”
“Saetan laughed, genuinely amused. “No, I wouldn’t think he would. He’s in his prime, virile, living, and well trained in seduction. That twelve-year-old body must be driving him out of his skin.”
“He gave her one. “It is totally unfair,” he said in his most severe voice, “to engage in a snowball fight when only one combatant can make snowballs.” He waited, loving the way her eyes sparkled. “Well?” Even without reading the thoughts beneath it, he could tell her touch was filled with laughter. Daemon bent down, gathered some snow, and learned how to make a snowball from snow too fluffy to pack. This, too, was similar to a basic lesson in Craft—creating a ball of witchlight—yet it required a subtler, more intrinsic knowledge of Craft than he’d ever known anyone to have. “Did the Priest teach you how to do this?” he asked as he straightened up, delighted with the perfect snowball in his hand. Jaenelle stared at him, aghast. Then she laughed. “Noooo.” She quickly cocked her arm and hit him in the chest with her snowball. The next few minutes were all-out war, each of them pelting the other as fast as they could make snowballs. When it was over, Daemon was peppered with clumps of white. He leaned over, resting his hands on his knees. “I leave the field to you, Lady,” he panted. “As well you should,” she replied tartly. Daemon looked up, one eyebrow rising.”
“They went to the tree. Daemon dismounted and leaned against the tree, staring in the direction of the house. The stallion jiggled the bit, reminding him he wasn’t alone. “I wanted to say good-bye,” Daemon said quietly. For the first time, he truly saw the intelligence—and loneliness—in the horse’s eyes. After that, he couldn’t keep his voice from breaking as he tried to explain why Jaenelle was never going to come to the tree again, why there would be no more rides, no more caresses, no more talks. For a moment, something rippled in his mind. He had the odd sensation he was the one being talked to, explained to, and his words, echoing back, lacerated his heart. To be alone again. To never again see those arms held out in welcome. To never hear that voice say his name. To… Daemon gasped as Dark Dancer jerked the reins free and raced down the path toward the field. Tears of grief pricked Daemon’s eyes. The horse might have a simpler mind, but the heart was just as big.”
“He slid into bed, turned off the light…and groaned as an image of a wise, skinny old crone filled his mind. No, he begged the still night. Sweet Darkness, heed the prayer of one of your sons. Now that she’s so close, let her be young enough to want me. Let her be young enough to need me. The night gave him no answer, and the sky was a predawn gray before he finally slept." - Daemon”
“Be that as it may, there is fixed in my mind a certain opinion of long  standing, namely that there exists a God who is able to do anything and by whom I, such as I am, have been created. How do I know that he did not bring it about that there is no earth at all, no heavens, no extended thing, no shape, no size, no place, and yet bringing it about that all these things appear to me to exist precisely as they do now?”
“You have no position from which to negotiate. Certain things will be done. You will comply willingly, your compliance will be forced, or we will act without you.”
“Just as when we step into a mosque and its high open dome leads our minds up , up , to greater things , so a great carpet seeks to do the same under the feet .Such a carpet directs us to the magnificence of the infinite , veiled , yet never near , closer than the pulse of jugular , the sunburst that explodes at the center of a carpet signals this boundless radiance . Flowers and trees evoke the pleasures of paradise, and there is always a spot at the center of the carpet that brings calm to the heart. A single white lotus flower floats in a turquoise pool , and in this tiniest of details, there it is : a call to the best within , summoning us to the joy of union .in carpets , I now saw not just intricacies of nature and color , not just mastery of space , but a sign of the infinite design . In each pattern lay the work of a weaver of the world, complete and whole ; and in each knot of daily existence lay mine .”
“Mi vida, no hallarás en el pozo en que caes lo que yo guardo para ti en la altura".”
oh, heavenly happenstance
rare creation, you
-Marcus (Poetry Spam #22)”
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