“Ellysetta was sitting at the secretary in Rain's suite, penning a note to her parents, when Bel burst through the doors. The other members of the quintet followed so swiftly that all five warriors nearly ended up in a heap on the floor. They were breathless and flushed, perspiration trickling down the sides of their faces.
Kieran bent over, hands on his knees, and dragged air into his lungs. "Well done,brothers. We beat the smug chervil.”
"You all look like you could use a drink." Cool and unwinded, Gaelen smiled at the new arrivals from the sofa near the window. "Water? Or perhaps something a little stronger to help you regain your strength?”
“Do you know how a pearl comes to be?"
"Oysters make them, from a bit of sand."
"Aiyah. From a bit of sand." He rolled the pearl between his fingers. "All pearls begin as something unpleasant that the oysters cannot expel from themselves, even though they may want to. So they embrace these things that will not leave them, shaping them and smoothing away the sharp edges, until over time, they make of these unwanted things great treasures.”
“Wanting love is not selfish, Rain. We're all born missing the connections that make us complete.”
“If you wish to serve me, as you have bloodsworn yourself to do, you must do so with honor. And that does not include introducing yourself by name to people like my mother in order to terrify them into submission.”
"Kem'falla—" Gaelen protested.
"Don't bother to deny it," she snapped.”
“And as for you, Gaelen is your uncle, your mother's beloved brother. He's your family. Learn to get along with him. You don't have to like him, but you might want to consider the fact that he's walked the earth more than twice as long as either of your parents, and he's spent the last thousand years battling the enemies of the Fey. He's probably forgotten more Fey skills than you've ever learned.”
“She would defy laws and kings and Mages and demons and even the Church of Light to be with him. She would tear down the barriers that still lived in her mind, confront whatever darkness lurked behind them, and defeat the Mage who thought to claim her soul. That soul--and every part of her--belongs to Ranier vel'En Daris. There would never be happiness for her that did not include him.”
“If honor were reserved only for those who never err, none of us would be worthy," Rain answered.”
“He sat beside her. "What sort of things did you dream of?"
"Oh, what most young girls do, I imagine. Fey tales. True love." She gave a small, self-conscious laugh. "You.”
“Live well. Love deep. Tomorrow, we die.”
“she didn’t know, but she couldn’t shake the fear that the real danger was only just beginning and that things were about to get much, much worse.”
“There's not a Fey warrior born who does not dream of finding his truemate, so at night, after my parents went to bed, I would sneak out of the shellaba and lie beneath the stars and ask the gods if they could somehow find a way to give a tairen a truemate.”
“He raised her hand to his lips and kissed it, a tender gesture that made her heart melt. "Come. Let us dance the skies together.”
“His hand trailed down the side of her face, brushing back spiraling tendrils of hair. "Come, shei'tani, dance the skiles with your mate.”
“When he caught his breath, he regarded her with glowing, half-closed eyes. "If I'm very, very good, shei'tani, will you do that again when we're alone?”
“I don't want you to go." She reached up to touch his face and pull him down to her. "I want this, Rain. I want you.”
“The last time I saw him, he was hustling his wife away from the table, and she was shedding clothes as she went. Ah, gods." He rubbed his face. "I pray they made it to their rooms before...”
“She glanced down and gasped, and her arms slapped into place to cover all her most interesting bits. He grinned. The robe and gown were sheer and he had not spun undergarments.
She scowled. "This is not what I would call being 'very, very good.'"
"That is a matter of perspective, shei'tani. From where I'm standing, it looks very, very good indeed.”
“If I get in the water in this outfit, the cloth will turn completely transparent."
"I know, and I'm looking forward to it more than you can imagine.”
“Master Fellows surprised Ellysetta with an unexpected compliment. "You have a natural regal grace, my lady, and it has been the greatest of pleasures to teach you. Just remember, while some part of you may always be Ellie, the woodcarver's daughter, you are also Lady Ellysetta, the Tairen Soul's queen." He bowed and kissed her hand. "At the palace tonight, let Ellysetta reign.”
“Oh, Ellie, you look beautiful. Like a Fey-tale princess.”
“Then we die, Elfeya, If we're lucky.”
“In my whole life, I have known no wise people (over a board subject matter area) who didn't read all the time - none, zero. You'd be amazed how much Warren reads - and at how much I read. My children laugh at me. They think I'm a book with a couple of legs sticking out.”
“So he’s gonna want to get out of Dodge as fast as he can.” Sure enough, the caravan was racing down the”
“As a child, I prayed she’d live, that she’d make it through the night. Eventually, I prayed she’d choke to death in her sleep. Not very kind, I know, but it would have meant escape. I was a prisoner of war in my mother’s battle with herself, and the only liberator was death.”
“The spiritual work builds upon awareness, increases consciousness, transforms it, merges it with the divine, and this is how to reach true spirituality in life.”
“He doesn't love me no matter what he believes. He loves that I need him. But I don't. Not really. Because despite what I thought, what I counted on, he has never been there for me. There is no safety with him. I've always been alone. I just didn't know how isolated I was until now.”
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