At least no one had mentioned that Safiya was a Truthwitch. Once Aeduan was well compensated for all the hassle of hunting the girl, he could still hand her off to his father.
Sweetheart, are you all right? Senator Cruz asked. I don’t understand—isn’t it a good thing? From what you’ve told me about the conditions in the camp...If you look at it that way, it is a blessing, Cole said. But razing the camp likely also means moving or shredding all of the hard-copy records on site, not to mention, the camp can’t serve as evidence of the cruelty of the rehab program. The camp is...a powerful symbol. It’s the oldest, the largest, and, I’m going to venture a guess here, really sets the bar for abuse and mistreatment.
Separating the kids...the cabins... My throat was dry. Most of them had been together for almost ten years. They were each other’s families. And they wanted to take even that from them?All right, so that’s one camp out of contention. Senator Cruz leaned back against her seat and folded her hands in her lap. What are the other potential big hits?There is no other big hit, Cole said. We’re still going after Thurmond. It’s our endgame.
I looked up. Shock must have registered on my face, because confusion spread across Cole’s. Really, Gem? I must have said it ten times this morning. Thurmond, no matter what. What’s with that look?I moved back through my day, trying to remember. It must have been after we finished training...or before Liam and the others had returned? The whole morning had a strange, glossy sheen to it, as if exhaustion was clouding my memories like steam on a mirror.
As if tracking my thoughts, Cole said, Damn, kid. We need to get you more sleep.
Is five weeks enough time to pull something like this off? Concern creased Senator Cruz’s face.As she snapped a third leg on the lead dog, one of the flanking bargests closed her teeth around Shadow’s neck, which would have been a great strike if Shadow’s skin hadn’t been impenetrable. By the time the second bargest realized it couldn’t rip out Shadow’s throat, she had turned, somehow managing to catch and rip out the second bargest’s tongue.
Oof. Apparently those weren’t invulnerable.Jesse winced, but he couldn’t look away. The second bargest yelped, pawing at her mouth, and the third approached Shadow more warily. Shadow planted all four feet and snarled, a deafening sound—and then the third bargest completely shocked Jesse by flipping over on its back, showing its belly.
Slowly, the two injured bargests did the same, showing submission to Shadow, who began stalking around them in a circle, snapping her jaws. It was like watching an angry teacher trying to discipline her students in the middle of a hurricane. Finally, Shadow backed up—and two of the three bargests stood up and followed her. The bargest who’d led them before was still healing two broken legs, but it rolled onto its stomach and held its head in submission.Jesse choked out a laugh. Shadow had just taken over a pack of bargests.