“Say again, Gerard?”

lucinda alone color Cropped2

I loved writing Lucinda for this story. She’s always been extremely independent, but as I drafted the series ending last month, I realized just how much she has to grow as a character. Most importantly, she needed to be able to defend herself. (She demanded a weapon.) So I gave her a dagger, sharp like her wit and suited to the conflict ahead. Knowing Lucinda, it won’t be enough. . .


She puts the book down and slides over, subtle as a pickpocket. Nobody else notices.

“How does one properly hold a dagger?” There’s a determined look in her eye, the same one that says she won’t take no for an answer. “Someone has to protect you two,” she says, glancing at Carmen.

“And Magnus?”

She ignores the question. “What do I do?”

“Depends on the kind,” I whisper back.

What she shows me is a rusty, double-edged Ralfian with a thin, stubby crossguard and no quillons. It’s definitely past its prime but still functional, and only slightly oversized for her hand. Not a bad pick for a beginner.

“Reverse, hammer, forward, and palm-enforced.” I flip through the basic grips at my side so no one else is likely to see. “Stick with forward. Only idiots and Nightshades use the palm-enforced, and reverse grip is for stabbing people from behind. Mostly.”

“Thanks, Teacup.”

“Just don’t use the pointy end on me.”

She smiles reassuringly, eyes twinkling, and slips it back into her dress pocket. There’s a light snapping sound as it clicks into place. . .

Available now on Amazon: RINGS.

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