A crosswind caught Kai’s wingabeast as lightning flared too near. Shrilling, the winged horse tilted in flight, and Kai’s stomach lurched. A gust snatched the hood from his head and roared in his ears. He blinked to clear the stinging rain that drove into his eyes. Thunder boomed like a timpani, shaking the air. Flecht shuddered beneath him, and Kai placed a calming hand on his wingabeast’s straining neck. He did not like this long flight through the wild night any better than did Flecht.
An image rose, unbidden—Lof Raelein Maeven, Faeraven’s High Queen, upon her deathbed, her sea-green eyes surging with life. As a guardian of Faeraven and as a friend, he would die to appease the hope that had flared in those eyes.
Wind howled and lightning flashed close enough to blind. Kai wondered if his own death neared. He would not—could not—halt his journey, although it took him into the teeth of danger. Necessity drove him as he pushed onward, past endurance. If he survived the storm, he would deliver Maeven’s last summons.