[This post is from Thomas Merlin Ambrose’s point of view.]
She stared at me, silent, shocked, then her jaw tightened, a spark flaring in her eyes. She was angry. I tried not to look at her. I didn’t need to know that the truth had slammed home—because it was the truth. There wasn’t any doubt in my mind that my uncle would do anything he thought feasible to protect us, and keeping us inside the wards was simply the most expedient of the options available to him.
What I hadn’t quite expected was how angry it seemed to have made Kailey—an anger I couldn’t quite fully understand. I’d only brought it up because I’d hoped that it would make her leave me alone for a while with my thoughts instead of sitting there and staring at me.
“He can’t do that,” she finally said.
“He can absolutely do that,” I countered, closing my eyes. “We’re not adults, Kay. The only ones he really can’t force to stay inside the wards are Gwen and Kurt and Tory and Anne.”
She started to pace. I sighed, sinking deeper into my pillows. A pounding started to rise behind my eyes and I wasn’t sure it was from the attack by the camazotzi or if it was from trying to get through to her.
“Kay,” I said slowly, carefully. “If there is anything you want to do on the other side of those wards, go and do it now before he tells you that you can’t.”
“There isn’t anything,” she said quickly, though I suspected the lie as soon as the words left her lips. I sighed.
There’s something, she just doesn’t want to tell me what. That’s fine. I have my own damn secrets, too. Let’s just keep them. “Fine,” I mumbled, adjusting my blankets. I was dizzy, even laying down. “I’m going the hell to sleep. Do me a favor and tell the others I’m fine.”
“But you’re not.”
“Yeah, well. I’ll be better in the morning. See you at breakfast.”
“They’ll know something’s wrong when you miss dinner,” she said. I cracked an eye open to see her standing a few feet away, her arms crossed, wearing as stubborn of an expression as I’d ever seen.
I sighed again. “Can you just let me sleep, please?”
Her lips thinned. For a second, I thought she was going to say no.
Then she nodded, her arms dropping to her sides. “Okay. I’ll see you in the morning.”
I watched her go, then tugged my blankets closer. I was cold even though I was burning up. If this was what getting hit by something that could poison people with the old blood felt like, I never wanted to get hit again.
I was pretty sure that everyone else in my life would agree.