And sure enough, she was discreetly patting her hair and not quite looking at him as she said, You said you were introduced while you were visiting Anthony, did you not?
We had first tried to conceive while River was still a half-blood, thinking that just maybe, since she was still half human, it would work. But it didn’t. I also considered the possibility that there could be a problem with me. Could fae even have children? I didn’t know. None of the other fae who were on the island—Lucas, Kailyn, Marcilla, Chantel or Nolan—had begotten children while in their fae bodies, so I was left in the dark. River had suggested that we continue to look for a cure for her, since it was most likely her womb that was the problem.And so had begun a journey that I wouldn’t wish upon anyone. We’d tried the same cure that worked on full vampires—a dose of immune blood followed by exposure to sunlight in the Pit. At least the risk of death was less for her, since half-bloods could tolerate sunlight much better, and I was able to sit with her. We sat there for the usual time it took vampires to be cured, and hours more. But by the end of the day, she still hadn’t changed.
Eventually, with the help of the witches and jinn, we’d realized that the trick was to stay there longer still. So we gave her a more intensive course. We arrived at the Pit early in the morning before the sun rose, in order to catch the first rays upon her skin, and then stayed the rest of the day right up until dusk. We returned to our home and slept for a few hours, and then returned again at the break of dawn. We did this for three days in a row, and finally it happened. She turned back into a full human.I’d never forget the joy of that moment. We were like bunnies for a while, and shortly after, our daughter was conceived. We called her Grace because that was exactly what she was to us. Half fae, half human, although she couldn’t thin herself or fly like I could, she possessed the power to manipulate elements—fire especially.As I gazed at my daughter now, all grown up, I felt quite overwhelmed by emotions. This was the first true transition into adulthood—joining the League, and embarking on her first mission.
Leaning down, I kissed her forehead.You okay? I asked her.
Her turquoise eyes met mine. Yep, she replied, a little too quickly.
Drawing two earpieces from my jacket pocket, I positioned one around Grace’s right ear while putting the other on mine. It was our method of communication while on the cargo ship, which our sonar had already detected by now. I estimated we’d be ready to board within twenty minutes. Only a few of us will climb aboard first, I said, now addressing the group of new recruits. But you will be included; as part of your induction it’s important to go through all stages of a mission. You will each accompany your parents. They’ll equip you with your own earpieces. I suggest you go to them now.Brucella and Dane positioned themselves directly in front of the portal, blocking our way.
You have gone too far with this wench, Bastien, Brucella hissed. I will not have you make a mockery of my daughter and our family!Time for some fresh human meat, Dane snarled, a malicious glint in his eye.
They launched at us. Bastien bolted backward and leapt without warning, sending us into a heart-stopping freefall off the cliff. Wind sliced past my ears. Then, with a violent jolt, we came to a stop about ten feet above the ground. Bastien had managed to stall us with a single arm, grabbing hold of a sturdy branch. I glanced back up at the mountain. My blood ran cold at the sight of Dane and Brucella thundering down.After shifting me to his back, Bastien began leaping from branch to branch. The wolves were almost directly beneath us by now, gnashing their jaws and growling.