After the first pirate attack there were the humiliating murmurs, the way Neils would gently separate them after that. He’s meant for Cypress, people tried to explain to Lonan. Then Xan got the seashell tattoo, pearl-white on his chest.
Gilliana sat herself down by the fire, mottled brown robes bagging around her. The cage clanked to the floor. She handed him a warm, slightly muddy seagull egg from a brass bowl and pillowed the martin in her lap.
The needle went in, out, and in the assassin’s heart. The icon took shape: blue as black, the damned kingfisher. James’ dragon raged around inside him, trying to thrash loose, but the thrall had ordered him to be still. James’ teeth rattled in their sockets. His magic rattled in his bones.