Spy Glass Page 115

I shook my head, planning to argue, but he continued. “Your and Galen’s blood are mixed. Your souls are intertwined. If one of you dies, we believe the other will, as well.”

“Yelena—”

“She won’t return a soul to a dead body.”

“Oh.”

“I can’t exist without you, so killing Galen is not an option. I would rather lose you to the Stormdancer than lose you to the sky.”

“But what about Curare—”

“Please. Stop. Trust us to have considered all the angles. Just keep Galen busy.”

“How distracted do you need him?” I asked, dreading the answer.

“It would be best if he wasn’t walking around the compound until nightfall. Going between buildings is okay as long as he’s busy with a specific task.”

“You do understand the longer I stay with him, the greater the chance he’ll force me to consummate the wedding.” It needed to be said. Although stating my fears out loud didn’t alleviate them one bit.

He squeezed me tight. “I’m painfully aware of the danger. This would be an ideal time to use that clever brain of yours. You have gotten out of more difficult situations than this.”

But I hadn’t been bound to a sick bastard. I buried the doubts deep and promised to try. I nuzzled his neck, inhaling Devlen’s distinctive scent. My connection to Devlen seemed stronger despite Galen’s hold. Just like my glass animals, I felt his song deep inside me. A desire to repeat yesterday’s liaison flushed through me.

I lifted my head and he turned as if he read my mind. We kissed and I moved so I straddled his lap. I ceased worrying about my situation and was just satisfied to be with him.

Eventually, Devlen broke off. “Too dangerous.”

He was right, but I didn’t have to like it. When he left, all warmth fled my body. I shivered and planned different ways to distract Galen. If I was lucky, he would sleep all day.

I wasn’t lucky. Galen woke when the sun burned through the fog. Grumpy and irritable, he ordered me to fetch him something to eat with a specific request to make sure the food came from a container that served everyone. I hustled to the dining room, trying not to search the faces of the clan members I passed. If I spotted a disguise, I could endanger the person, who would most likely be a good friend or a relative.

Without the fog, the entire compound was visible. Sunlight sparked from the blue-green waters of the sea. We were a few days into the hot season—my favorite time of the year. Kade and I had promised to visit his parents and we were going to return to Booruby, as well.

My heart ached when I thought of Kade. I still cared for him, but the fire had died.

By the time I returned to Galen’s cottage, he had washed and dressed. He ate without saying a word, then ordered me to follow him to Walsh’s office.

“Until I’m certain the Bloodroses won’t do anything stupid, you’re to stay with me at all times unless I say otherwise,” Galen said.

Quinn’s sister jumped a foot when we entered. I feared she would go into labor, but she pulled it together and helped Galen find Walsh’s files and important documents. More armed guards stopped by, reporting on the evening’s patrol and on a few minor incidents.

Devlen arrived a couple hours later. He had changed into fresh clothes. Ignoring me, he said, “You were right, Galen. No problems. The Bloodroses have accepted your leadership.”

“We’ll keep things as is for now, but once they’re comfortable, we can start implementing our changes,” Galen said.

“What should I do next?”

“Take a contingent and sweep the coast. Make sure no one is hiding in the rocks. Damn fog is a pirate’s best friend. And then find the woman who worked in the kitchen last night. She put something in my cheese to make me sick. Pepper and salt her and put her out to dry in a very public location.”

Devlen nodded and left. I hoped for the poor woman’s sake he didn’t follow all of Galen’s orders.

“Opal,” Galen said, jerking me from my thoughts. “Tell Penny to fetch the Minister and his wife. I want to speak with them before they leave.”

Happy for a break, I hurried to the outer reception area where Penny worked and relayed Galen’s message.

She stood, but instead of dashing off, she inclined her head as if she wanted me to follow her. I couldn’t go far, but she stopped near a file cabinet. Opening the bottom drawer, she withdrew a small package.

“Master Walsh told me to give this to you if anything happened to him,” Penny whispered.

“What is it?” I asked.

“No idea, but don’t let Galen know about it.”

“I’ll try.”

Penny put her hand on my shoulder, comforting me. “You can endure. I pretended I was lying with my boyfriend when Walsh ordered me to his bed.” Then she hurried to run her errand.

Her concern touched me. I let the guilt over not recognizing the horrors going on here consume me for a moment before I used it to motivate me. I glanced at the office door. It was ajar, but Galen couldn’t see me. Unwrapping the package, I uncovered two syringes filled with blood and a note. I pocketed the note and rewrapped the gifts from Walsh, returning them to the drawer. Hoping I would have a chance to read the letter later, I returned to my post.

Penny soon arrived with Minister Heath and Nancee in tow. They smiled at Galen and inquired about Walsh.

“We hope his illness isn’t serious,” the Minister said. “We’re honored to be here. This is the first time he invited us to officiate a wedding.”

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