Did Benjamin think the Camarilla would intervene?
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Actually, Eleanor was more knowledgeable on that front, with her connections through her sire and her own former position of archon. Even so, she could no more than guess. The Inner Council might step in, or they might have more urgent business elsewhere, responding to the ravages of the curse. Chicago, Miami, Washington D.
Benison had a history of stabilityfor his city, not necessarily his temperamenton his side. He would have a certain window of time during which he must maintain control. Only no one had any way of knowing how large that window was.
But these were the thoughts she wanted to share with Benjamin! Eleanor realized that she was crumpling in her fist the lace doily on her writing table.
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She carefully smoothed the lace, then sat. This table, in other venues, had seen written some of the most influential epistles of the Kindred world. Eleanor did not feel she was flattering herself to think so. But she had left behind the larger world of Cainite politics to be with Benison. Sometimes she wondered if he remembered that.
Tonight he was gallivanting around the city keeping an eye out for troublean important job, but if the prince saw to all that himself, why did they have hired help? It could be interpreted as weakness, the prince on patrol, and she had told him as much. But what good had it done? Meanwhile, she was here alone. No Benison. No Benjamin. Why hadnt she heard from her childe? That was one secret that her husband need never learnthat she had Embraced Benjamin after her intellectual desire for him had left her little choice, other than to destroy him, and that clearly had not been a viable alternative.
Eleanor frowned at the blank stationary before her. Why hadnt he responded to her previous message? Her waifish serving ghoul, Sally, said she had delivered the letter. Again, Eleanor put pen to paper. Benjamin had often assured her that, though it tore a small piece of his heart away each time, he destroyed each of her letters to him, for the sake of prudence. Still, Eleanor generally tried to couch her phrases ambiguously enough that an errant missive would not be her undoing. This letter would be less ambiguous than most, she felt, as her aggravation with Benjamin flamed higher.
How long had it been since she had heard a tender word from him? How long had it been since shed heard any word from him, other than the most perfunctory of greetings at a social gathering? Not since before that disastrous exhibit of Marlenethe-idiot-whores so-called artwork at the High Museum, and that had been months ago!
Her pen bit into the stationary. She had been willing to play coy for some time, but enough was enough. In no uncertain terms, she let Benjamin know just how she felt about being ignored. The ungrateful childe, she fumed. Eleanor believed that affairs of the heart, unlike marriage, which was as much a political as an emotional arrangement, required brutal honesty at times, and she spared no brutality with Benjamin.
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She could understand, after Owain Evanss threats, Benjamins wanting to Because thats what was important reallythe encounters with her in, and then out of, her neglige were mainly just a change of pace, to keep things fresh. It all came back to Owain Evans, Eleanor noticed. If he hadnt tried to unduly influence Benjamin, then she would not have to be dealing with this personal turmoil.
How much did Evans know?
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There was no one other than Benjamin and herself who knew that he was her progeny, so there was no way Evans could have discovered that little tidbit. But then again, he had found out about her and Benjaminsinvolvement, despite their precautions. An infuriating thought crossed Eleanors mind. Had Evans merely suspected and taken a blind gamble, and Benjamin had panicked and confirmed Evanss suspicions? If Benjamin had been so clumsy, could he have discussed his Cainite lineage with someone as well? Perhaps; though her secret childe was superior to most intellectually, he was lacking in guile.
Eleanor completed her letter to Benjamin. Hopefully the expression of her displeasure would bring him to his senses. Certainly, she was sure, he could hope to do no better than her, neither intellectually nor socially, while her status was quite safe The Winnowing. Safer, in fact. And, she reminded herself, J. Benison was quite the adept debater. What his arguments lacked in subtlety, they made up for in conviction.
Certainly she could be content without her wayward childe, if it came to that. Yes, dear Benjamin had better just watch his step, or he might find himself walking all alone in the dark city, she decided. As she folded the note and applied sealing wax, Eleanors thoughts turned again to Owain Evans.
She needed to find out how much he did know; but more importantly, she needed to make him pay for dragging her name into his little schemesregardless of the accuracy of his allegations. She would keep her eyes open, and she would find a way. Of that, Eleanor was certain. Kli Kodesh walked dripping from the sea.
CAPTAIN WILLARD GLAZIER.
The waters rolled back from his shoulders and fell away unnoticed in his wake. A tangle of long white hair, plaited with streamers of seaweed, stretched out behind him like a fishing net cast out upon the surface of the waters. His simple white linen robe clung tightly about him as he emerged.
It had gone distinctly gray from exposure to sea and salt, and drew attention to the unmistakable bluish tinge to his features. The lines of his face were strikingsharp, clas Sand and bits of shell coated his skin, glittered in the moonlight.
The effect made him seem more a work of marble and artifice than a creature of flesh and blood. Even his bearing was regal, statuesque. He rose from the water smoothly, seamlessly, like the prow of a ship cresting the beach. Kli Kodesh felt the water stream away from his chiseled features. He blinked experimentally.
Once, twice. He had the unsettling impression of struggling to awaken from a dream.
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And it had been such a lovely dream. He had dreamt of crossing a vast desert. The sands beneath his feet were cool and soothing, even at midday when the shadows themselves fled the desert wastes. The sky was a blue of infinite depth, ever-shifting. It filled the vault of heaven from horizon to horizon. Kli Kodesh had wandered that desert for forty years, moving with the languid grace of the sleeper.