Predatory Marriage — Chapter 288. Outcome (4)
Translator: Atlas / Editor: Regan
Leading the group of Tomaris was the old woman who had given Leah the basket of roses. She bowed deeply, with reverence.
“Thanks to the kindness of the Queen, we are still alive.”
It was Leah who had saved them from being murdered by Cerdina.
“I will cover her eyes with a spell for a time,” the old Toma woman went on, and as if it had been prepared beforehand, a magic pattern appeared in the grass of the garden.
It would be safe there. But Leah did not step into the pattern. Instead, she looked back toward the reception hall, where black smoke was still rising into the sky.
She had gotten the people of the palace to feel disoriented. She had shaken them hard enough that Cerdina had felt the backlash from the disruption to her spell. But Cerdina had recovered so much faster than expected.
Leah had left Ishakan in that place.
“Leah,” Mura called, urging her to safety. Leah hadn’t moved a step toward the safety of the pattern, and she only turned her head to look at the old Toma woman, reading the anxiety in her gaze. There was something the old woman wanted to say.
“Is there something else I can do?” Leah asked, looking straight at her. Beside her, Mura’s gaze at the old woman instantly froze, as if warning her not to say anything foolish. The Toma woman did not heed the warning.
“The King of Kurkan will not like it,” she said cautiously. “For his Queen must be stained with blood…”
Mura’s eyes grew darker.
“Explain,” Leah ordered. She didn’t want to sit back and let Ishakan fix everything. Just as he was risking his life for her, she wanted to protect him too. “I’ll do anything.”
Mura’s hands twitched a warning, as if she meant to wring the old woman’s neck if she spoke just one more word, but Leah caught her hand.
“Mura,” Leah said gently, persuading her with only a few words. “Haban is there, too.”
Mura’s lips quivered.
“Cerdina has abandoned her humanity for power,” the Toma woman said impatiently. “The King of Kurkan is said to be strong, but this may be…a little difficult. I would like to explain one way that we might help him.” – Posted only on NovelUtopia
She sounded serious and was obviously picking her words carefully. Leah nodded for her to continue, gripping Mura’s hand.
“Cerdina’s spell was built on the foundation of Estia. Thanks to the royal family, she has gained almost infinite power.” Which meant that Leah was required, if they wanted to shake the spell to its foundation. “It is something only the true mistress of the palace…the true mistress of Estia can do.”
“Why are you saying this now?” Mura asked suspiciously.
The Toma woman glanced at the huddling Tomaris, as if in answer to her question. All of them looked as if they had seen visions of the violent end of their lives.
“Because it is a method I did not want to use,” said the old woman, with a bitter smile. “But today is the day of atonement, where we must cut the chains forged by the sins of our ancestors.” The woman transferred her gaze to Leah. “Do you want to help us with this spell?”
They likely already knew what her answer would be. Leah nodded, and as soon as the decision was made, the gathered Tomaris moved to transform the existing pattern on the ground, adding and shifting its lines. They had already prepared, assuming that Leah would accept their proposal.
Watching, Mura muttered something in Kurkan under her breath. No one asked her to translate. It sounded like it would be rude in any language.
“We need a sacrifice,” the old Toma woman explained. “In sorcery, a heart of the same bloodline is the highest sacrifice. That is why Cerdina ate her father’s heart.”
Leah’s lips tightened at the memory of Count Weddleton’s grisly end.
“Then we must make an equivalent sacrifice?” She asked.
“But a sacrifice comparable to her father’s heart…”
“Still…” the Toma woman said slowly. “There is someone else who is connected by blood to Cerdina.”
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