Spy Glass Page 113

Galen smoothed the annoyance and suspicion that had creased his face. “Of course. It’s your night.” He shouted for everyone’s attention, and when silence descended, Galen gestured to the Minister.

He moved into position, standing to face both the clan members and us with his wife by his side. The dusting of gray along his temples and the fine lines around his eyes gave him a distinguished air. Nancee opened a book and held it for him to read. Minister Heath loomed over his wife. The way they moved in unison and the image of the two of them side by side felt…right. This couple belonged together. Unlike Walsh and I.

Walsh pulled me close as the Minister began the ceremony. Heath’s young voice didn’t match his older face. With the fog and firelight and the magic forcing me to kneel with Walsh in front of the Minister, the whole situation felt surreal. My mother would be livid when she found out I was married without her.

I glanced at the gathered crowd. Wouldn’t this be the ideal time to revolt? No one moved. The Minister reached the part where he solicits objections to the union.

Dead silence. No revolt. No outcry. Even Devlen didn’t speak. Just when I lost hope, one voice said, “I object.”

28

UNFORTUNATELY, THE VOICE WAS GALEN’S.

“What do you think you’re doing?” Walsh demanded.

“Taking over your little family.” He whipped out a knife and before anyone could even blink, he stabbed it into Walsh’s throat.

Blood gushed and I reached to help him, but Galen ordered me to stop. None of the guards moved a muscle.

“Any objections?” Galen asked everyone.

Walsh’s family stood there in silence, watching their leader die. A few nodded as if they witnessed justice. The Minister and his wife gaped with horror.

“I—”

“Be quiet,” Galen said to me.

No one else objected.

Galen motioned to Devlen to drag Walsh’s body to the side. Devlen kept a neutral demeanor as he carried out the orders.

Galen knelt next to me. “Please continue with the service,” he said to the Minister.

Nancee clutched her husband’s arm in a death grip. He opened his mouth and closed it, searching the crowd for anyone who was upset by the murder.

“Please continue,” Galen said again.

I marveled at how fast Heath recovered. Although he rattled off the vows in a rush. Galen allowed me to speak again and my mouth betrayed me, saying all the right things at the right time. In a matter of minutes I was married to Galen. No revolt. No rescue. Nothing but the creepy fog.

The rest of the evening passed in a blur. I hoped to get a moment alone with Devlen, but Galen kept me close to him. At the end of the night, Walsh’s body was thrown onto the fire without ceremony. A couple of the clan members added wood to the bonfire, stabbing the branches into the flames as if they could pierce his heart.

At the end of the evening, Galen escorted the Minister and his wife to the guest cottage. I stayed behind them, but through our connection I felt him draw magic, seeking the couple’s emotions. Fear, horror and the desire to keep something from Galen reached us. I sensed Galen planning to interrogate them with his drugs, but for now he tugged at their emotions. Drawing magic from me, Galen erased the horror and fear over Walsh’s murder from their minds and replaced them with fondness and joy for the happy couple, masking the bad memories.

They said good-night with wide smiles. When their door closed, Galen looked pleased with himself.

“What was that all about?” I asked.

“I knew I could control a person’s emotions, but I never had enough power to do it. With your added magic, I have more than enough strength.”

My head spun with how much havoc he could cause with his new ability. I bumped against him.

“I feel dizzy,” I told him when he shot me a nasty glare.

“That’s what you get for not eating.”

We swung by the kitchen. The woman cleaning the counters stopped and prepared a snack of bread and cheese for us. I avoided the cheese, but ate a big portion of the bread, taking my time, delaying the inevitable. Galen ate absently.

“How long were you planning to assassinate Walsh?” I asked.

“Not long after I met him. His little kingdom was just too tempting. Black diamonds, pearls and an in-house workforce that’s not going to cry foul about anything. Not a squawk from them when I murdered their leader in front of their eyes.”

True. No love lost over Walsh’s demise. Not even his guards. “Did you bribe his bodyguards?”

“Oh yeah. Devlen’s been working on them since he arrived. That man has a golden tongue.”

I bit my lip, dredging up memories of long ago when Devlen had twisted my words. When I had wanted to sink my switchblade into his heart.

Galen laughed. “Do you hate him more than me?” he asked.

“No.”

“Good.” Then Galen added, “You already know I hold all the power. And tonight the Bloodrose Clan has realized the power had shifted to me. Three against one. Quinn’s magic is minor, and Walsh wouldn’t let me increase the boy’s strength with blood.” Galen ripped off a piece of bread. “Worked out in my favor, and now I can turn him into another slave.” That was not going to happen. Not while I lived and breathed.

Galen watched me with amusement. “You haven’t asked the big question.”

“Maybe I don’t want to hear the answer,” I said.

“Doesn’t matter what you want. Not anymore. Ask me why I married you.”

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