Flight from Hell - Yasmine Galenorn

Yasmine Galenorn - Otherworld #15.5 - Flight from Hell

Flight from Hell (Otherworld/Sisters of the Moon #15.5)
Yasmine Galenorn

fantasy/vampires/romance

Several Months Earlier, in the Dragon Reaches

When they brought Shimmer before the Wing Liege, she had no clue what was going to happen to her. Stealing could be a capital offense, punishable by death.

She’d always been careful. She had always managed to escape before they caught up with her. But this time, there had been a simple miscalculation and bingo . . . here she was, in a cell made of the strongest metals that existed. Metal bars even a dragon couldn’t break.

With a sigh, she stared out the tiny window in the stone wall. The water seemed so far away right now, and she hung her head, missing the salt air and the feel of the wind on her face. Why had she been so stupid? It wasn’t like she’d taken anything all that valuable. And she hadn’t stolen anything sentimental. White dragons weren’t given to sentiment, anyway. No, she had broken into the Greanfyr family dreyerie on a dare. She’d done it because . . . well, that’s who she was. A misfit, an orphan, an outcast. There was no place in society for her, and so she had created her own niche, and that included seeing how far she could bend the rules. But now, everything was shot to hell.

To her surprise, at the trial the Wing Liege hadn’t been quite as terrifying as she thought he would be. In fact, Lord Vine had spoken gently to her. He gazed into her eyes, and for a moment, she thought she caught a glimpse of empathy. The sentence had been handed down—an odd punishment but it had been at his urging. After the council adjourned, it was over and he led her back to her cell.

He paused as she sat down at the marble table near her bunk. “Shimmer . . . you’ll be okay, you know.”

She glanced up at him, and for the first time, her walls came down.

“I’m scared.” She hated admitting anything like that, but it was the truth and now there was nothing to be gained by lying. She had put up a good front—she’d learned early how to bluff her way through difficult situations—but now the chips were down and she tossed her cards on the table. “I miss the ocean. I miss the water.”

“You’ll be near the ocean where we’re sending you. And I promise you, Alex . . . well, he’s interesting. He takes a little bit of getting used to, but I vouch for him. He’s an old friend of mine. He’ll keep an eye on you.” The Wing Liege’s manner might be formal, but his words held real warmth. “Shimmer, you had a rough start in life. There’s no denying that. That’s why the Council is giving you a second chance.”

“Second chance? I never had a chance from the start.” She smiled.

“Well, consider this your chance then—a chance to redeem yourself.”

He still didn’t undertand. Born out of the caste system, she’d been persona non grata since the beginning. Her “second chance” amounted to being carted off. The sentence could have been far more severe but it still amounted to exile. “Out of sight, out of mind, right? Call the punishment what it is, Lord Vine. Banishment. The Dragon Reaches is my home . . . even if I don’t have a clan or caste to stand by me. Now, you’re taking that away from me.” She walked over to peek out the window, but all she could see through the barred opening were cloudy skies.

The Wing Liege pushed himself to his feet with a sigh. “Shimmer, face facts, girl. If you stay here, Greanfyr will hunt you down and destroy you. You know what the Whites are like . . . they’re vicious, greedy dragons. You stole from one of the highest families in their caste. I’m sending you away for your own safety. And maybe, maybe you’ll figure out what you want to do with your life while you’re gone.”

“What choices do I have? I have no caste, Lord Vine, due to my birth.”

“If you make it through these five years, you’ll be granted the caste of your peers, Shimmer. That was part of my bargaining with the Elder Council. But you must go. This is the only way to keep you safe until what you did blows over.”

He headed toward the door, pausing before he exited. “You’ll be fine. Earthside has its