Shatter

I didn’t know what I was expecting. It’s like I knew, but I’d been focusing so hard on not Seeing him, that I had to ignore the feeling.

Papa and Annalise, Lisette, she insisted that we call her that, she said it feels strange to have people call her Annalise, got along very well. She’s bright, like Count Caleb said, and smart. She does seem uneasy sometimes, but for the most part, I can see why he believes in her.

And I can see the other thing too.

“I’m looking forward to seeing Dovetail,” she said. “Did you always live there?”

“We lived at Brightcoast until my mother died,” I said. She nodded. “I was three, I don’t remember her much, but we went to Dovetail then.”

“I remember the day you came,” Tristan smiled warmly at me. I blushed. “I was all of five, but you were memorable.”

“I believe I cried anytime any one came near me,” I laughed. Annalise smiled. “You’ll like it though, and with Brayton gone, it will be even better.”

“I’ll miss Pantona,” she sighed.

“We all will,” Tristan smiled at her. “Athena most of all, I think.” Annalise laughed.

“She’ll go back soon enough, I suppose,” she said. I cocked my head at them, but Papa was grinning. “I think that Aaron will propose once things are settled with my coronation.”

“Caleb mentioned they’d formed an attachment,” he smiled. “I wonder if the General approves?”

“I think Athena is talking to him about it tonight,” Tristan said. “It’s a ways off though, if we can’t take the Capital.”

“I don’t see why we couldn’t,” Annalise said, “I was very impressed by the army, it’s a larger force than I thought.”

“Now that you’re here,” Tristan said, “I think they could take on every shadow in hell.” She laughed and that was when I realized. I think Tristan did too, because he cleared his throat and excused himself. Annalise was blushing.

“I suppose I’ve trespassed on your hospitality enough,” she said, “It was wonderful to finally meet you Uncle.” He smiled.

“And you my dear,” he said. “I think that things will go well for all of us.” She smiled and stood up, saying goodnight. Papa looked at me. “Marina, you’re quite pale.”

“I’m alright,” I said softly, “I think I’m going to go to bed.” I headed over to my tent. I lay down and closed my eyes tightly, because I didn’t want to cry.

They’re in love with each other, and I’m a fool.

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