Radiance | Page 9 of 160

Author: Grace Draven | Submitted by: Maria Garcia | 18128 Views | Add a Review

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ully face the door. Beside her, Fantine bristled in outrage.

“I think not. It violates all customs and proper conduct. He can speak to her after the marriage is proclaimed official. The wedding is in less than half an hour anyway. He can wait.”

A gray hand tipped with pointed nails curled over the page’s shoulder.

The man gave a yelp and leapt to the side, leaving space for a cloaked figure to stride through the opening. The queen and the attendants gasped as one.

All but Fantine dropped into curtsies as the Kai prince bowed respectfully before her.

“Your Majesty, I beg your indulgence. A private moment with my bride, please.”

Ildiko wobbled in her curtsey. That voice! She recognized that voice.

The cloak was different than the one he’d worn in the garden—still muted tones of black and gray but lavishly embroidered and cut more for ceremonial use than everyday wear. Amongst the vibrant roses, he’d been a shadow.

Here in the receiving room, backlit by the western sun’s fiery descent, he was a featureless silhouette.

She straightened to stand silent and impassive next to Fantine. The queen scowled, her expression carving meandering rills into the pale mask of her face paint. “This is improper, sir, prince or not. Can’t it wait?”

Ildiko slid a surprised glance to her aunt. That Fantine wouldn’t just order the Kai prince to leave at once spoke volumes. She might counsel her niece to death on duty and the importance of this alliance, but she was no hypocrite. She wouldn’t jeopardize it either and afforded Brishen an unusual leniency with her question.

The prince obviously knew he held the upper hand. “No, Your Majesty; it cannot. I ask only a little of her ladyship’s time.”

“You will be late for your own wedding,” Fantine cautioned.

“I assure you, we will not.” Brishen remained exquisitely polite and steadfastly determined.

The queen’s eyes narrowed. She shot a warning look at Ildiko who had no trouble interpreting its message. Watch your tongue. Ildiko nodded.

Fantine motioned to the maids who lined up behind her like infantry. “You have a quarter hour. No more.”

She swept out of the room on a tide of dignified annoyance. The maid last in line turned, gave Ildiko a pitying glance, and closed the door behind her.

As soon as they were gone, Ildiko broke into a smile. “It’s you.” She didn’t bother hiding the relief in her voice.

The prince closed the distance between them and pulled back his hood, once more revealing lamplight yellow eyes set deep in their sockets, sharp-boned features cast in shades of slate, and a toothy smile that made her lock her knees against the urge to leap away from him. He reached for her hand.<

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Great book, nicely written and thank you BooksVooks for uploading

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