Witch, 114

“That’s new.”

“Yeah, James gave it to me the other day.”

“He gave you a boner the other day and you still have it?”

“Yeah, pretty much.”

“Unlike him.”

“He’s branching out,” Ron explained, slotting a post into place with a grunt.

Witch, 105

“Cassiopeia, I’m sorry to interrupt.”

“Not a problem, James. Do you have a question?”


“No one can answer it until you ask it.”

“I know. I was stalling for time because I’m not sure how it will be received.”

“There’s no need to be nervous, I know this is pretty complicated.”

“Right,” said James, nodding. “This question isn’t about the spellwork you’re describing, though I do also have a question about that. I had hoped not to distract from that, but I need to know why you attempted to poison me yesterday.”

Witch, 103

“This seems like something you could have mentioned to us.”

“I am mentioning it to you. I just did exactly that.”

“Prior to now, I mean.”

“I only found out about it a short time ago.”

“You could have sent a message.”

“When I was already coming here in a week?” James shook his head. “Seems like if I’m going to send you messages about important things in advance of the Coven meetings, then I never need to attend another Coven meeting.”

Others, 38

Robby took a deep breath as he stepped through the portal into Techen’s Stand. He’d been spending so much time away from it lately, in the capital and in Stag Keep with Edwin. It was nice to be back. He wished he wasn’t back.

It was so quiet everywhere, in the keep, in the town, in Robby’s head. It had been quiet in Robby’s head ever since that moment at the orgy when he’d been with Edwin and suddenly it had all just stopped. All the thoughts, all the noise that he’d lived with since Drew had come to his house and told him he was a priest and ruined his life, ruined his family’s lives. They were all gone from his head.

Lyren was gone from his head. And it was because of Edwin. Robby should have found it funny what had cleared him of the invader who’d taken control of his mind had been that Edwin fucking him for all he was worth, but it wasn’t funny. It had just happened, and Lyren was still out there. Andif Robby wasn’t careful, he’d get Robby again, and all the people Robby loved.

Robby was being very careful.

Witch, 101

“And he said nothing else?”

“Was all that not enough?”

“I am asking if you’ve left anything out.”

“Of course I have; it was a four-hour conversation.”

“If you could enlighten us.”

“About Sam’s dislike of beets?”


“I’ve told you everything relevant,” James said, cutting the archmage off. “I’m the only person outside the plateau who seems to have Sam’s trust, so if you want him to keep telling me what he’s doing, you should let me maintain as much of his privacy as is safe. He didn’t share many of the details of his plan with me, but he obviously intends to do this even if it means coming into conflict with other sorcerer clans. When I told him they’d have a problem with him doing that he made it clear he didn’t care.”

Others, 36

“And then he had some old ladies over for supper, I think they talked about him buying a farm.” Ned straightened the papers he was holding, which caused him to nearly drop the second one, which was blank. He managed to catch it in time and stuck it in front of the first one, which was also blank. “Uh, then he went up to his bedroom and went to bed. I guess he probably had sex with his fiancé, but I didn’t ask.”

Cameron looked bored, which was terrifying, so Ned shuffled his two papers. “And then this morning he went to work again, and he’s been at the castle all day. His shift ends just after sundown, and he has a date tonight at a bathhouse and he won’t be home until late.”

Cameron was quiet, so Ned waited just a second. “Uh, that’s all,” he said. “He hasn’t done anything miraculous or magical or anything.”

“Fine,” Cameron said, waving a hand. “Get out.”

Chosen One, 99

“Hey,” said Garrett, hanging out outside Juno’s classroom at the end of the day.

“Hey,” Isaac said. “What’s up?”

“Two things,” Garret told him. “First, I want to go on a date.”

Oh. Isaac broke into a grin. “Okay. Are you free tonight?”

“No,” Garrett laughed. “But in a little while. I got tickets to that minstrel show next week and I figured we could go if you were still interested?”

Witch, 94

“Do you guys need anything?”

“No, we’re fine, really.”

“Okay. If you do, I’ll be just outside.”

“We wouldn’t want to interrupt your big meeting. It sounds very important.”

“It is, but taking care of people who need it is also important. Come get me if you need anything.”

“If you insist.”

“I do,” said Ron, giving Daisy a smile. “I know how hard it is to suddenly have to leave home, and it must be even harder when you have a baby.”