Rhys was saying to Nesta, We can go to your estate tonight—evacuate your household and bring them back here.
Please, you must help.I dont understand. How?
Weve tried everything to find out what happened to him. Everything. They wont tell us a thing. I thought, maybe, you could… And her voice trails away.Mum has connections. Political ones: her dad was Prime Minister before he was assassinated, on the Lorder side of the Coalition. Can she help? I listen eagerly.Im so sorry. Ive already tried, for Kylas sake. But it is a blank wall. There is nothing.
I dont know where else to turn. And there are faint noises, snuffling and hiccupping. Shes crying; Bens mum is crying.Listen to me. For your own good, you have to stop asking. At least for now.
And there is no logic, no thought, no control: I cant help it. My eyes fill, my throat closes up tight. Mum tried to find out what happened to Ben. For me. She never told me, because she never found out anything. What a risk she took: asking questions where Lorders are involved is dangerous. Potentially lethal.
What a risk Bens mum is taking, right now.Stop fussing, Astrid snaps.
She and Stella leave the dining room.The door swings shut, and as if we all had been holding our breath, we let it out in one collective gasp.
Is she always like that? I ask Ellie, sat next to me.She nods. Shes horrible to Stella, isnt she? Can you believe what she said to her, about knowing what it is like to worry about your daughter, when Stellas daughter is missing? Nasty.