46 Dagar kvar till Queen of Air and Darkness
Kit stood and watched the smoke rising in the distance through the window of the room he shared with Ty.
At least, he assumed he shared the room with Ty. His bag was here, tossed into a corner, and nobody had ever bothered to tell him whether he was supposed to be in a different room. He'd gotten dressed in the bathroom that morning and emerged to find Ty pulling his T-shirt on over his head. His Marks seemed unusually black, probably because his skin was so pale. He looked so delicate—Kit had to glance away from the shape of his shoulder blades, the fragility of his spine. How could he look like that and be strong enough to fight demons?
Now Ty was downstairs, with the rest of his family. People tended to cook when someone died and Shadowhunters were no exception. Someone was probably making a casserole. A demon casserole. Kit leaned his head against the cold glass of the window.
There was a time he could have run, Kit thought. He could have run and left the Shadowhunters behind, lost himself in the underground world of Shadow Markets. Been like his father, not part of any world, existing between them.
In the reflection of the window glass, Kit saw the bedroom door open and Ty come in. He was still wearing his mourning clothes, though he'd taken off the jacket and was just in a long sleeve T-shirt. And Kit knew it was too late to run, that he cared about these people now, and specifically Ty.
"I'm glad you're here." Ty sat down on the bed and started unlacing his shoes. "I wanted to talk to you."
The door was still slightly open and Kit could hear voices coming from the kitchen downstairs. Helen's, Dru's, Emma's, Julian's. Diana had gone back to her own house. Apparently she lived in a weapons store or something like that. She’d gone back to get some kind of tool she thought could fish the splinters out of Julian’s bleeding hands.
Ty's hands were fine, but he'd been wearing gloves. Kit had seen Julian's when he'd gone to rinse them out at the sink, and they’d looked like shrapnel had blown into his palms. Emma had stood nearby looking worried, but Julian had said he didn't want an iratze, that it would just heal the skin closed over the bits of wood. His voice had sounded so flat, Kit had barely recognized it.
"I know how this is going to sound," Kit said, turning so his back was against the cold glass. Ty was hunched over, and Kit caught the gleam of gold at his neck. "But you're not acting the way I expected."
Ty kicked his boots off. "Because I climbed up the pyre?"
"No, that was kind of actually the most expected thing you did," said Kit. "I just..."
"I did it to get this," Ty said, and put his hand to his throat. Kit recognized the gold chain and the slim disk of metal attached to it: Livvy's locket, the one he'd helped her put on before the Council meeting. It had a circlet of the family thorns on the front, and she had told him Julian had added an etching to the back: a pair of crossed sabres, Livvy's weapon.
Kit vividly remembered her holding her hair aside as he fastened the clasp, and the smell of her perfume. His stomach lurched.
"Livvy's necklace," he said. "I mean, I guess that makes sense. I just thought you would..."
"Cry?" Ty didn't look angry, but the intensity in his gray eyes had deepened. He was still holding the pendant. "Everybody is supposed to cry. But that's because they accept that Livvy is dead. But I don't. I don't accept it."
"I'm going to get her back," said Ty.
Kit sat down heavily on the windowsill. "How are you going to do that?"
Ty let go of the necklace and took his phone out of his pocket. "These were on Julian's phone," he said. "He took them when he was in the library with Annabel. They're photos of the pages of the Black Volume of the Dead." He looked at Kit with a worried frown. "Will you come and sit down next to me so you can see them?"
Kit wanted to say no; he couldn't say it. He wanted this not to be happening, but it was. When he sat down next to Ty on the bed, the mattress sagged, and he knocked against Ty's elbow accidentally. Ty's skin felt hot against his, as if the other boy had a fever.
It had never crossed his mind that Ty was lying or wrong, and he didn't seem to be either. After fifteen years with Johnny Rook, Kit was pretty familiar with what bad spell books were like and this one looked decidedly evil. Spells in cramped handwriting littered the pages, along with creepy sketches of corpses crawling out of the grave, screaming faces, and charred skeletons.
Ty wasn't looking at the photos like they were creepy, though; he was looking at them like they were the Holy Grail. "This is the most powerful spell book for bringing back the dead that's ever existed," he said. "That's why it didn't matter if they burned Livvy's body. With spells like these she can be brought back whole no matter what happened to her, no matter how long—" He broke off with a shuddering breath. "But I don't want to wait. I want to start as soon as we get back to Los Angeles."
"Didn't Malcolm kill a lot of people to bring Annabel back?" said Kit.
"Correlation, not causation, Watson," said Ty. "The simplest way to do necromancy is with death energy. Life for death, basically. But there are other sources of energy. I would never kill anyone." He made a face that was probably supposed to be scornful but was actually just cute.
"I don't think Livvy would want you to do necromancy," Kit said.
Ty put his phone away. "I don't think Livvy would want to be dead."
Kit felt the words like a punch to the chest, but before he could reply, there was a commotion downstairs. He and Ty ran to the top of the stairwell, Ty in his stocking feet, and looked down into the kitchen.
Zara Dearborn's Spanish friend, Manuel, was there, wearing the uniform of a Gard officer and a smirk. He was shrugging, and Kit leaned forward more to see who he was talking to. He caught sight of Julian leaning against the kitchen table, his face expressionless. The others were ranged around the kitchen—Emma looked furious, and Cristina had her hand on the other girl's arm as if to hold her back.
"Really?" Helen said furiously. "You couldn't wait until the day after our sister's funeral to drag Emma and Jules to the Gard?"
Manuel shrugged, clearly indifferent. "It has to be now," he said. "The Consul insists."
"What's going on?" Aline said. "You're talking about my mother, Manuel. She wouldn't just demand to see them without a good reason."
"It's about the Mortal Sword," Manuel said. "Is that a good enough reason for all of you?"
Ty tugged on Kit's arm, pulling him away from the stairs. They moved down the upstairs hallway, the voices in the kitchen receding but still urgent.
"Do you think they'll go?" Kit said.
"Emma and Jules? They have to. The Consul's asking," said Ty. "But it's her, not the Inquisitor, so it'll be all right." He leaned in toward Kit, whose back was against the wall; he smelled like a campfire. Kit realized it was probably sap from the pyre wood, and his stomach lurched again. "I can do this without you. Bring back Livvy, I mean," he said. "But I don't want to. Sherlock doesn't do things without Watson."
"Did you tell anyone else?"
"No." Ty had pulled the sleeves of his shirt down over his hands and was worrying at the fabric with his fingers. "I know it has to be a secret. People wouldn't like it, but when Livvy comes back, they'll be happy and they won't care."
"Better to ask forgiveness than permission," Kit said, feeling dazed.
"Yes." Ty wasn't looking directly at Kit—he never did—but his eyes lit up hopefully; in the dim light of the hallway, the gray in them was so pale it looked like tears. Kit thought of Ty sleeping, how he'd slept the whole day of Livvy's death and into the night, and the way Kit had watched him sleep in terror of what would happen when he awoke.
Everyone had been terrified. Ty would fall apart, they'd thought. Kit remembered Julian standing over Ty as he slept, one hand stroking his brother’s hair, and he'd been praying—Kit didn’t even know Shadowhunters prayed, but Julian definitely had been. Ty would crumble in a world without his sister, they'd all thought; he'd fall away to ashes just like Livvy's body.
And now he was asking Kit for this, saying he didn't want to do it without him, and what if Kit said no and Ty crumbled from the pressure of trying to do it alone? What if Kit took away his last hope and he fell apart because of it?
"You need me?" Kit asked slowly.
Ty nodded. "Yes."
"Then," Kit said, knowing already that he was making a huge mistake, "I'll help you."