I should’ve expected that Mother overheard our discussion at the pulpitum. But Octavia greeting us in Arx Hall with tampons in hand? That’s a new one.
“Greetings, children,” says Mother smoothly. “Shall we chat in my personal quarters? It’s more private there.” She offers the box to Myla. “Do you really need these?”
“Not at the moment,” answers Myla. “I just said some stuff to make some people buzz off.”
“I figured as much,” states Octavia. “We’ve lots to discuss. It’s been a busy few days.” Turning, Mother speed-marches over to a white door. “Ah, here we are.”
I frown. “This is new. Why move your quarters?”
“I wanted something out of the hustle and bustle of the main palace.”
If Mother thinks that will end the conversation, she’s wrong. “And does this change have anything to do with the warrior who’s been walking behind us all this time?”
“I don’t know who you mean,” states Octavia smoothly.
Myla turns around. “Oh, there he is. I think Lincoln’s talking about the guy in golden armor. The one who’s very tall and… fit.”
“Ah.” Octavia waves her hand dismissively. “That’s just Andalus from the House of Moriaen. You’ve heard of them, I assume?”
“They’re the house founded by the Moorish knight from King Arthur’s court,” I reply.
“King Arthur’s not all he’s cracked up to be,” offers Myla. “Just saying
“I can assure you,” intones Octavia. “Andalus is everything one can expect from a true knight.”
These words seem to be some kind of signal between them. Andalus steps up to open the door for us. I catch a distinctive scent from him.
“Honey and cedar,” I state. “What a unique cologne you wear, Andalus.” I look to Mother. “Isn’t that the scent I caught before?”
“I don’t know what you’re talking about.” Octavia turns and marches into the room.
At this point, I should walk into Mother’s chambers as well. For some reason, I’m not going anywhere. Protective energy courses through me, along with many questions.
Who is this fellow?
How did he meet Mother?
What does he want from her?
Author Christina "CEE BEE" Bauer has sold more than 1M copies across her 45+ epic fantasy books for young adults. She's recorded (and narrated) eight of her books into audiobooks, as well as led the translation of her novels into four different languages. USA Today has called her work "must-read paranormal fantasy." Bauer is an autism advocate and quirky loudmouth whose writing style really isn't for everyone. But if you like stories with complex worlds inhabited by chicks who kick ass and take names, then read on!
Christina lives in Newton, MA with her husband, son, and semi-insane golden retriever, Ruby. She loves to connect with her fans at ChristinaBauerAuthor.com.
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