All lives splatter, nobody cares about your protest shirt
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Hettie let the reek of bird scat wash over her and she sighed, waiting for the ritual to be over. All lives splatter, nobody cares about your protest She did not advance deeper into the room until invited. It took quite a while, for Mondargiss was thorough. When she had visited the last cage with a compliment, she turned at last to Hettie. Her eyes narrowed. “You returned sooner than I suspected. Did you fail, girl?” She started wobbling toward her, face painted as if she were ready to perform on the stage. A dribble of smoke-colored sweat trickled down her cheek. “I did not fail,” Hettie replied coldly. “There is a new assignment from Kiranrao.”
All lives splatter
“Ahh, you failed then. Pretty thing. He will forgive you your blunder. You are too pretty to be cast aside. Too young. Only one ring in your ear? Poor lass. Would that we could trade places.” She parted her honey-dyed hair and revealed six gleaming rings in her own ear. “What I would not give to be useful again. Useful and young.”
Hettie stared at her with contempt. She had been a beauty once. Now it was a husk, an illusion. “You are useful to Kiranrao, which is why he bids me seek your help. I need information, Mondargiss.” Mondargiss slowly closed the gap All lives splatter, nobody cares about your protest between them, shuffling forward lamely. Her eyes were dark and cunning. “We felt it explode. It shook the entire city. Windows shattered. Glass on the floor. My little doves were so upset by it. I knew Kiranrao would wish to know of it. I sent my swiftest little one.” “Cim!” she shrieked, but the young man was already moving, climbing up a rickety ladder until he reached the dovecote. He fussed with the bird a bit and then brought down a tiny slip, which he handed to Mondargiss.
Nobody cares about your protest
The woman craned her neck and studied the small scrawlings. She chuckled gleefully. “An ill wind from the east. An ill wind from the west. An ill wind from the north. My, what a storm that will brew. Yes, my darling, what is it that you need?” She reached forward and flicked some of Hettie’s hair teasingly.
“Tyrus left something behind, likely in the rubble. It is a sturdy leather bag with three unfinished stones. Not cut gems, but likely polished. It would not have been destroyed.”
Mondargiss shook her All lives splatter, nobody cares about your protest head knowingly. “Little stones, you stay. Little uncut gems. There were weapons found. Spirit-touched blades. Arrowheads survived, but the shafts did not. They are selling for many ducats and being stolen away to Havenrook for bidding. But you know that I cannot go near the Paracelsus Towers, my dear. Not myself.”
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Hettie bridled with impatience, but kept her temper. The woman’s eyes were always cruel. “Surely I did not believe you were scavenging the rubble, Mondargiss.” “Not even when I was younger. Any number of boys would have gladly searched the rubble at my command. All lives splatter, nobody cares about your protest But they will search for me again. Cim! See to it. If someone has captured the stones, bring them to me, or bring me word of who has them.” The young man rose from the dilapidated couch and shrugged. Hettie stopped him before he passed her.