Chapter no 32

Crown of Midnight

Celaena awoke in her own bed, and knew there would be no more sedatives in her water.

There would be no more breakfast conversations with Nehemia, nor would there be any more lessons on the Wyrdmarks. There would be no more friends like her.

She knew without looking that someone had scrubbed her clean. Blinking against the brightness of the sunlight in her room—her head instantly pounding after days in the darkness of the dungeon—she found Fleetfoot sleeping pressed against her. The dog lifted her head to lick Celaena’s arm a few times before going back to sleep, her nose nestled between Celaena’s elbow and torso. She wondered if Fleetfoot could sense the loss, too. She’d often wondered if Fleetfoot loved the princess more than her.

You are nothing more than a coward.

She couldn’t blame Fleetfoot. Outside of this rotten, festering court and kingdom, the rest of the world had loved Nehemia. It was hard not to. Celaena had adored Nehemia from the moment she’d laid eyes on her, like they were twin souls who had at last found each other. A soul-friend. And now she was gone.

Celaena put a hand against her chest. How absurd—how utterly absurd and useless—that her heart still beat and Nehemia’s didn’t.

The Eye of Elena was warm, as if trying to offer some comfort.

Celaena let her hand drop back to her mattress.

She didn’t even try to get out of bed that day, after Philippa coaxed her into eating and let slip that she’d missed Nehemia’s funeral. She’d been too busy guzzling down sedatives and hiding from her grief in the dungeons to be present when they put her friend in the cold earth, so far from the sun-warmed soil of Eyllwe.

You are nothing more than a coward.

So Celaena didn’t get out of bed that day. And she didn’t get out of it the next.

Or the next.

Or the next.

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