Gunderson’s nasally voice breaks through my concentration, snakes through my cerebellum with alarming speed, and has me jerking my head up. Scanning the perimeter of the library. Skimming over the entrance. Glancing toward the back stacks, to the circulations desk.
He wouldn't help me escape, per se. That would be too risky, even for him. But he could get me water. And tell me where Levi was. And he could finish Levi's mark in the dirt with my blood, after I left. To give me more time to free Fen and escape.So now I must wait for Levi to feel the pull of the mark. To come to my cell.
It takes so long I fear the plan failed, that Marco chickened out, or I hadn't left enough blood. But then Levi stops talking and looks down at his wrist.He says something that makes Fen scream louder than any of the torture had, and then leaves the dungeon laughing.I grit my teeth and wait until I can no longer hear his footsteps, then I push out the loose stones I know are there and climb out.
When Fen sees me, his mouth falls open."You know, you really have to stop getting yourself captured and beaten," I say, trying to lighten the mood.
I rush over to him and shove the key into the lock, hoping it works. It truly is a master key, because his chains fall off, and I support his body as he steps away from the beams. "How did you get here?" he asks, his voice hoarse and low. Even in this broken state, it soothes me to hear it.
"Remember, I know this castle's secrets," I say. Then something whines behind me, and I turn to see Baron chained in the corner. "Oh my god, what has that monster done to you?"My dress falls to the floor and I bend to scoop it up, not caring that she’s seeing me in my strapless bra and underwear. She’s seen me without clothes on a million times before; we’ve been roommates since her parents let her move out of the dorms sophomore year.
Look at me Win. I raise my pale, sunless arms, running my palms along my narrow hips and stomach. Do I look like the type of girl he would want to date? Do I s-sound like his t-type? Pfft. G-get real.She straightens, sitting up. What is that supposed to mean? Have you looked in the mirror lately? You’re beautiful. If he isn’t interested, then he’s a freaking idiot—not that I’m telling you to date him, but if you wanted to, you could…not that I want you to.
I’m just saying you’re freaking incredible.No, you’re just saying that because you’re family.