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The Night Prince - Chapter 18Chapter Eighteen
In Which Lucia Finally Looks Upon The Face Behind The Enchanting Night Music
The rest of the day was a blur through which Lucia tried her best to put the frightening figure out of her mind. She was very seriously considering leaving that very night. This served not only as a distraction from her fear, but also as a hope that she very much enjoyed contemplating. Too much seemingly pointless toil, too many frightening mysteries, and far too much Claudette were making Lucia grow impatient. The thought of disappearing, and then later returning to see her friends again once times grew simpler, was indeed quite tempting. She supposed she could steal away under cover of darkness and not be disturbed by anyone. Whatever fate awaited her, she decided, it lay somewhere beyond this mansion's stony walls.
However, by the end of the day, Lucia was quite exhausted indeed. The prospect of slipping out
The Night Prince - Chapter 17Chapter Seventeen
In Which Lucia Becomes Certain Of Her Strange Discovery
Lucia was still quite tired upon awakening. She wanted nothing more than to have another hour or so in which to sleep, but she pulled herself out of bed regardless. As unpleasant as waking up that morning was, it could be nowhere near as bad as incurring Claudette's hellish wrath.
As she dressed, she could not help but fondly remember the night before. Prince Byron had returned! Her premonitions and, indeed, innermost fantasies were showing the first flickers of coming true. What's more, her days of her and John and Margaret being at the mercy of the old hag Claudette would soon come to an end. While looking herself over in the mirror one last time before reporting downstairs, she recalled the incredible air that Byron took on when masterfully playing the piano. At the mere memory of which, Lucia found herself once again in awe of
The Night Prince - Chapter 16Chapter Sixteen
In Which Lucia Hears The Mysterious Night Music Once More
Lucia fell into bed that night with a thousand thoughts storming through her mind. Could it be? Was she sleeping under the same roof as a murderer? Her first thought fell to Julian, the unseen prince. His mysterious and shadowy nature indeed lent itself to the possibility that he was the culprit. But, Lucia wondered, could someone really be so cold and callous as to kill their own father? Especially since Julian had nothing to gain from it. Byron was the one stepping up to the role of King, not Julian. If he wanted to assume the throne, then surely he would have done so once the opportunity presented itself. Or was there still something else that he was waiting for? Something else that still stood in the way? Was Byron in danger? she wondered. Was she herself in danger? &
The Night Prince - Chapter 15Chapter Fifteen
In Which Lucia Learns More About the Mysterious Crime
Dinner that night involved cabbage. The overpowering smell of the boiling vegetable filled the kitchen and pressed against the frost covered windows. The chill of evening had set in quick and cold, and crushed against the clouded glass from the opposite direction. Even though the last few rays of sunlight were still clinging to the horizon, the air outside was as icy as a February midnight. In the warmth of the indoors, Lucia was quickly laying plates out on dinner trays. Her attention went from the windows, evidence of the onset of colder months, to Margaret, who was busy stirring an immense pot of cabbage with the fervor of a mad wizard. She looked up from her cabbage stirring frenzy and caught Lucia's eyes. Fearing she was being impolite, Lucia hurriedly looked away. Margaret did not seem to mind, and simply gave her a k
The Night Prince - Chapter 14Chapter Fourteen
In Which John and Margaret Reveal Their Plans For Lucia
And with that, she turned to leave. However, she had not so much as left the hay-covered area and stepped out onto the field when she saw Margaret approaching. The rosy-cheeked maid was marching along, swinging some small object in her hand. Upon noticing Lucia, Margaret raised her other hand over her head and waved in a broad display of cheerful - if exuberant - greeting.
Margaret dashed up the rest of the way, huffing puffs of dragon smoke. The bottom of her dress and apron fluttered in waves as she ran.
"Hello, Margaret," said Lucia. "Nice to see you."
Until now, the two only had opportunity to see one another when preparing breakfast or dinner, so they hadn't yet spoken during the day. The sun shone down on Margaret's face, making her look even more lively and youthful than usual. Lucia guessed that she could not hav
The Night Prince Chapter 13Chapter Thirteen
In Which Lucia Tends To Three Horses
The morning was as clear and cold as freshly drawn well water. A slight frost bristled on the grass, making it crunch underfoot as John and Lucia circled the mansion. It was the first day of the year that one could see one's own breath, and the two traipsed along creating dragons' mists. Lucia felt at peace in the daylight. She knew she was safe walking alongside a good friend. She was nearly skipping on the way to the stables, as if she hadn't a care in the world. John gave Lucia a weak smile.
"Poor girl," he said. "They make you do bloody everything, don't they?"
Lucia responded with a bright smile. "It's all right, John," she said. "I love horses."
Soon they arrived at the stables. All the hay was encrusted with frost, but aside from that, the place appeared to be quite the same as it had been when Lucia had found
EasterRemember what you love,
you with sand in your teeth
and the feral burn of hunger
in your eyes.
God sends his regrets.
He made you grasping and slow,
in a late hour
when the wine washed low.
Remember what you love.
Fall to your knees in the toss
and the swell, quell
the appetite of the cold black sea.
Beg blessings for your home
and the salt-sick trees.
Reach what lies near:
the fat-faced child, the sweet-soft lamb;
tether the tantrum, trickle the blood.
Offer psalms to what is holy,
whisper the name of what you love
as it bobs in the bleak mad sea.
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