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MarblesKaiden scowled. He threw himself back onto the narrow, metal-railed bed and pulled the sheet over his face."Kaiden," his mother's voice warned him. "I said don't do that.""I can't hear you," Kaiden replied. "I'm dead."He sniffed. The sterile smell of the hospital blanket made him feel angry all over again. It wasn't fair. Other kids got to have normal lives. You can bet that they got to have normal birthdays. Before he could think of a complaint he hadn't said already, his mother pulled back the blanket."I'm not happy about the timing either," she said. "We'll celebrate once you're feeling better.""I feel fine NOW!" Kaiden shouted. The sudden exertion of energy made his heart skip a little. He startled and put his hand on his chest. His mother gently turned his face towards hers, but he pushed her away.On the other side of the tiny room,
The Night Prince - Chapter 18Chapter EighteenIn Which Lucia Finally Looks Upon The Face Behind The Enchanting Night MusicThe 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 SeventeenIn Which Lucia Becomes Certain Of Her Strange DiscoveryLucia 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 SixteenIn Which Lucia Hears The Mysterious Night Music Once MoreLucia 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 FifteenIn Which Lucia Learns More About the Mysterious CrimeDinner 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