by Anne Ivy
Read by Elizabeth Green Musselman
By dawn, the house of Eyr Eth Lun had fallen. Dead soldiers and laser-cauterized pieces of soldiers littered the stairs and bridges into the palace. The sun rose slowly over the spires, flushing the sky pink and pale blue, gleaming off broken glass, bringing color to the gore. Anubises, wading into the midst of the detritus, carried the bodies away. The dead, victorious and defeated alike, all went to the crematorium together.
The metal gates into the house hung warped and melted on their hinges. The inside echoed, empty, threatening. The first to set foot on the foyer’s metal floor had been electrocuted.
Eyr Eth Lun and his liege, the fugitive prince Ben Tur Ibren, were long gone. Some of Karnon Nameless Dae’s followers hoped their quarry—Lun and Ibren—was hiding somewhere in the house, sure to be flushed out. Most knew better. Lun’s soldiers had fought with the desperate furor of those who knew themselves dead. They’d been fighting to buy their masters time to escape, not to save their own lives. They’d succeeded, and their ranks—brave, loyal, and dead—lay in unflinching testament to the cost of Lun’s contingency plan.
Rated R: Contains some violence and sex.
Eyre Isri Esth: The finest scryer on the planet, and the wife, or former wife, of Lun.
Eyr eth Lun: Esth’s former husband, head of a royal house, and protector of the fugitive prince Ibren.
Ben Tur Ibren: The fugitive prince, who is being hunted down by Karnun Dae.
Karnun Nameless Dae: An alien bent on revolution, and overthrowing the prince and his supporters.