Chapter 15

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The black robe with the golden dagger brought the blade to Uriel's throat and carefully drew it across, drawing blood. It was not enough to kill him, only to make him suffer and Eyrmysse think. Thin rivulets of crimson liquid flowed down Uriel's neck and face. Though he did not cry out, his eyes revealed much pain and he focused them upon Eyrmysse.

Eyrmysse shut her eyes tight and tried to think. If I do not take his place, he will die. His death will result in my failing this Trial and perhaps not becoming High Witch. But if I sacrifice myself for him, and they take my life, I will not become High Witch either. I will be dead. An uncharacteristic tear escaped as she opened her eyes and looked at Uriel deeply. She did not see his pain and blood, rather she saw him for what he really was. She recalled the night in the library and felt a pang in her heart for what could have been. Or what could still be. A barrage of feelings she was unaccustomed to assaulted her then. Feelings she would not confess to. She quickly repressed them, thinking I must do this for one reason only. I must become High Witch!

Eyrmysse rose up and offered herself to the black robe. Uriel was immediately cut down. He stood and briefly stared at Eyrmysse with a blank look that revealed nothing. Then he moved to one of the white robes and embraced her. Eyrmysse could see the sapphire eyes of her sister peek out from the depths of the cowl at her. And the warmth in her heart went cold.

Her robe was taken from her and, clad only in her underclothes, Eyrmysse was hung from the argentree in the same manner as Uriel. The wind suddenly picked up as did the lightning and thunder. Wolves began to bay at the moons. The witches left the Grove. But Eyrmysse did not notice. Her eyes were glassy with the vision of her sister walking away with the man she was willing to sacrifice her life for. I only allowed this so that I might become High Witch! Never again, she swore to herself.


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