The rajah casts more cobalt flames at the guards, and they fly back against the walls. He marches past the open cell door, Prince Ashwin behind him. Neither sees me buried up to my chin in the cell, but someone sneaks in.
The one on my shoulder is where I was struck by an arrow while escaping execution. An arrow Rajah Tarek ordered his guards to fire.It’s an older wound, but I’ll do my best, Your Majesty.
I wait for the Aquifier to leave and then speak to the prince. I don’t mind scars.I cannot decide if you deserve them or not. Did you betray Rajah Tarek?I already confessed to the vizier.
I want to hear from you, he says.This boy has placed himself between Kali and me like a stone wall. His concern about my injuries—wounds he caused—means less than nothing. I remove all emotion from my voice and report my answer. Rajah Tarek caught me trying to steal the Zhaleh and presumed I was working for Hastin.
No. I planned to exchange the Zhaleh for the warlord’s help in getting Kali and me out of Vanhi, but the prince does not need to know that.And you were acting like a brat!
And now you’re acting like my father!And you’re still acting like a brat!
We stop and glare at each other. He’s visibly clenching his teeth. The cords of his neck are like overly tightened guitar strings. He looks like he might snap at any second. But after several beats, he releases a heavy breath and rubs his dark beard.I’m sorry about last night, okay? he mutters. I didn’t mean to imply—