Chapter Nine

The audience dragged on, but I was glad for the time it took, for it occurred to me that the sooner my audience with the Prince Rivyn and his wife, the sooner this part of my life would be concluded, and I was not ready to say goodbye to my dragon.

I rested my head against his chest and held him against me, breathing in the now familiar and dear incense scent, trying to memorise the details of him. He stood with preternatural stillness, a statue but for the rise and fall of his chest as he breathed, his attention on the audience, although he no longer translated for me, and his arms rested around me.

I felt the change pass through him before the gathering began to move and realised the audience had come to its conclusion. “Come,” he murmured. “Rivyn and Siorin await us.”

I released him and he placed his hand on the small of my back, maintaining contact and cutting passage for us both through courtiers, brethren, an

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