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Pearson Mary E, “The kiss of deception”, public translation into English from English More about this translation.

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“You murdered my brother’s wife. She was only nineteen. She was going to have a baby, and you miserable cowards put an arrow through her throat.” I glared, my head throbbing, watching them put the picture together in their own minds. I felt as much revulsion for myself as I did for them. I had been dining and telling stories with Greta’s murderers.

Whoever had gone to bed in their carvachis or tents had come back out. They gathered silently in their nightclothes, trying to understand the furor. Finch had bloody lines across his jaw too, and Kaden had them on his neck. Eben stood back, his eyes wide, as if he was looking at a demon gone mad.

“Ved mika ara te carvachi!” Griz bellowed.

Finch and one of the vagabond men grabbed Malich, who still strained to get at me and Kaden came and took me brusquely by the arm, dragging me to the carvachi. He opened the door and all but threw me in, slamming the door behind him.

“What’s the matter with you?” he yelled.

I stared at him in disbelief, still choking on my own breath. “Do you expect me to congratulate them for murdering her?”

His chest heaved, but he forced a slow deep breath. His hands were fists at his sides. He lowered his voice. “It wasn’t their intention, Lia.”

“Do you think it matters what they intended? She’s dead”

“War is ugly, Lia.”

“War? What war, Kaden? The imaginary one you’re waging? The one Greta didn’t sign up for? She wasn’t a soldier. She was an innocent.”

“Lots of innocents die in war. Most are Vendans. Countless numbers have died trying to settle in the Cam Lanteux.”

How dare he compare Greta to lawbreakers. “There’s a treaty hundreds of years old forbidding it!”

His jaw hardened. “Why don’t you tell that to Eben? He was only five when he watched both his parents die trying to defend their home from soldiers setting fire to it. His mother died with an ax to her chest, and his father was torched along with their house.”

Rage still pounded in my head. “It wasn’t Morrighese soldiers who did it!”

Kaden stepped closer, a sneer smearing his face. “Really? He was too young to know what kind of soldiers they were, but he does remember a lot of red—the banner colors of Morrighan.”

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