His fingers pushed through my skull, holding me to the wall. The cold was crushing, freezing all thought as he stopped time. I couldn’t move, couldn’t breathe. The room black-iced over; crackling over the bone covered floor. The walls, the ceiling became an impenetrable night sky. Bones turned onyx. Aza’zel wanted information. We were in a secret room, a killing room long forgotten to history.
“Who has it?”
“No. The book.”
“I haven’t found it yet.” His snake-like fingers dug deeper, searching for the truth. I could hide things in my mind, but not everything.
It was a mistake to write the book. A mistake to entrust it to Uri. Aza’zel had made me, that should have been enough.
“Do a casting, find this book or you will be flung like a stone into the Abad. And bring me that urn!”
He withdrew, and I collapsed forward. On hands and knees, I fought for breath. He fractured and dropped into the bones, a crash like glass on stone. The cold lifted, I drew back as a shadow shifts across a wall. I had followed Sarina since the day I was resurrected into the dark, but now I had her and the book to act upon. Castings were not perfect, nor were they ideal; too much could go wrong or be misleading. I had little choice. He knew of the book; he was not patient.
Pacing the room, I built a dream, thick with promise, glowing with light. It would find who I wanted, but it would not lead me to them. I cast, let it flow into the skeins of night. It would take time, perhaps more time than I deserved.