"I don't like you working these late shifts, Ari," she says as I'm halfway up the stairs. "Such strange people coming and going. It's not safe."
At that moment, Ichan approached with all the flourish of a bandleader. Indeed, he was wearing a satin smoking jacket that was red as blood and a pair of loafer-shoes that bore his initials in gold thread. Quite a dandy, at least in his own mind.Welcome, welcome. Have a drink—Claus, serve them?
Xcor let his Bastards answer for him, deciding to move off into another room.And indeed, the aristocrats silenced as he passed them, their eyes widening from fear and respect—which was why he’d worn his weapons. He had wanted his personage to be a potent reminder of who was actually in charge.As he proceeded around, he noted idly that Throe was correct about the furnishings. Modern art choked the spaces, filling up corners and walls, crowding chairs and tables and sofas that were so contorted, one had to wonder where a guest could actually sit down. And the color scheme was all over the place, the only commonality appearing to be that the bright, discordant hues affront the retina—
How long would she wait? Would she have worn a coat?What if someone questioned why she was leaving? What if she was caught coming back into the house—?
It’s time. Throe nodded in the direction of a library that was nothing but shelving and books, the furniture having blessedly been emptied out.
Or at least, most of it. Centered in the middle of the space, there was a large, throne-like chair set up as well as a table with a big piece of parchment, wax for sealing, and many, many ribbons.Not enough. With a quick turn, he stalked across to a table that had been laid with gems.
The largesse of jewels had been the last thing on her mind as he had lifted her hood, but now her eyes widened at the display of wealth. Surely, she did not deserve such things. Not until she gave him an heir.Which abruptly seemed not a chore, a’tall.
As he returned unto her, she inhaled sharply. Rubies, so many she couldn’t count them—indeed, a whole tray … including the Saturnine ring which she had been told had always graced the hand of the queen.Accept these and know my truth, he said as he once again lowered himself at her feet.