“I cannot imagine a life without books.
Without Father's stories of the ancient Greek gods and goddesses, without pirate stories and fairy tales and poems. Without the hope of another way, of freedom and adventure beyond what we have here and now. How dark life would be.”
“I can’t see any other reason he would shut down the bookshop, unless it was to help you somehow. He loves books.' She gives me a tiny, owlish smile. 'He must love you more.”
“We’ll tell the nurses she’s a new student with an interest in nursing. They’ll be charmed.'
Tess flips her braids over her should. 'I am particularly adorable today.”
“Countries are forged by war; perhaps girls are, too. New England and I will be reborn together in this war between the witches and the Brothers. Between Maura and me.
I am newly wrought -- a girl of steel and snow and heartrending good-byes.
My magic is renewed by my heartbreak. It spills out my fingertips, swirling around me. The wind picks up, bitter cold now. The rain turns abruptly to snow, haloing the gas streetlamps like iron angels. Enormous snowflakes begin to fall -- fast, faster -- obscuring my sister, hiding her and Brenna and the carriage and the gray stone building that has become my home.
I am all alone in a sea of whirling white.
It feels right that it should be so.”
“We talk a bit, until Tess is sufficiently calm, and then I take her upstairs and see her snuggled back into bed with Cyclops and one of Maura’s romance novels. Strange bedfellows, but both seem to comfort her, and it serves to remind me again that she is a strange mix of woman and child, carrying a burden far too heavy for her.”
“You, in the moonlight, in this library, in this dress--" His eyes rove over me, from my frothy pink skirts embroidered with dark pink roses, past the swell of my breasts, up to the creamy skin of my neck. My breath comes fast as his gaze lingers on my lips. He's barely touching me, but it feels as though he's already undressed me with his eyes.
"Its the most beautiful thing. Like a dream." His voice is hoarse and full of wonder.
"Then its my dream, too," I confess as I claim his lips with mine,”
“I fumble with the top button of his vest and, when it comes undone, tug at the next one. Finn catches my earlobes between his teeth. "Are you undressing me?"
I shiver at his breath against my ear, achieving a third button. "Do you object?"
"No." His voice a little hoarse as I remove his vest and toss it onto the floor along with his cloak.”
“Maura looks stunned, as though she's been slapped. "What about me? Don't you trust me?" She gives a hysterical little laugh. Tears are gathering in her blue eyes. "Let me guess: you think I'm reckless. 'Too easily ruled by my emotions,' Elena said. As though feeling things too deeply -- wanting more for myself and girls like us -- is so terrible!”
“I kiss him back. I am a wicked girl, after all.”
“I prefer to believe we have some hand in our fates, that our choices matter as much as our stars.”
“-Ángel, siempre te he querido. Siempre te querré. Siempre -dijo con fiereza.”
“Stone dead," said Howard, as though there were degrees of deadness, and the kind that Barry Fairbrother had contracted was particularly sordid.”
“I draw him closer by his tie and whisper into his ear, "Cricket Bell, I have been in love with you for my entire life.”
“I saw a picture of you and Vincent in a 1968 newspaper that said you died in a fire," I said, turning to Ambrose.
He nodded at me with a little smile, urging me on.
"So how can you be here now?"
"Well, I'm glad we're starting with the easy questions," he said, stretching his powerful arms and then leaning toward me. "The answer would be ... because we're zombies!" and he let out a horrible groan, stretching his mouth open and baring his teeth as he curled his hands into claws.
Seeing my terrified expression, Ambrose began cracking up and slapping his knee with his hand. "Just kidding," he cackled, and then, calming down, looked at me sedately. "But no, seriously. We're zombies."
"We are not zombies!" said Charlotte, her voice rising with annoyance.”
“A disciplined mind leads to happiness, and an undisciplined mind leads to suffering.”
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