Lord Tharlmund felt his face contort into the same look of surprise registering on his daughter’s face. Except that Eilyn’s was caused by disbelief and his by shock. Only one person in seven hundred years and figured out his secret and he dispatched of her in this very alcove.
“You asked for this?” Eilyn screeched, her chest heaving. The demon answered her with a piercing howl.
“I asked for protection,” he managed to utter as Eilyn’s face went from disbelief to anger. “but you don’t know necromancers! They offered me my dreams. They seduced me with my heart’s desire. My one true weakness.”
“Life eternal?” Eilyn frowned.
“Power,” Clement whispered, his eyes on the hem of the tapestry. Eilyn looked at him and he added, “Your grandfather’s throne.”
“A second son,” Tharlmund said mockingly. “Even my own daughter holds it against me.”
“You were lord of an estate richer than the crown,” Eilyn shook her head. “You married well and wanted for nothing!”
“I should have been on that throne!” Tharlmund shouted, “King of France! I wanted my name to ring through history!”
“It has,” Clement said. “Occult history.”
“A hidden history,” Tharlmund spat. “Befitting a second son.”
“If you knew,” Eilyn turned her wounded eyes back to Clement. “Why didn’t you come for us sooner?”
“We only knew of the spell and its lasting effects on the palace. We had no idea about the inhabitants. Not that it would have mattered, as we don’t interfere.”
“You know how to stop this, don’t you?” Eilyn’s voice trembled with rage.
“Of course,” Clement said. “As does your father.”