“You’re a fighter; it’s woven
in every fiber of your being, Evie.” Xavier’s soft tone does something to me. I
want to hide beneath it, wrap myself in it like a blanket and rest.
“Maybe I’m a fighter because that’s what you’ve made me—lifetimes of fighting for you.
Was that the price we paid for being together? Did we have to agree to mission after mission just to see each other?”
It’s in his eyes. I’m right. I put both my hands to my face and cover my weary eyes for a moment. When I pull
them away, I ask, “Did it get to be too much for me? Was the price too high to
pay? Maybe I can’t remember us because I wanted it that way. Did I decide to cut
my heart out rather than to have it die slowly?” I feel like sobbing.
“No. You’d always fight for us,” Xavier replies without a hint of doubt. “The answer
lies in Simone—in her memories.” “You want me to go back there! Back to
Lille with Emil!” I begin to pace again, biting my thumbnail anxiously.
“I want you to find out what happened,” Xavier says in an even tone.
I point my finger at him. “No. You’re asking me to relive what happened!”
“If it means defeating Emil in this lifetime then, yes, that’s what I’m asking.
I need to know the debt owed to iniquity.”
“The debt to iniquity—to wickedness?” I murmur aloud.
“Emil’s power is a concession—that’s plain to
me. I want to know why.”
Source: Amy A. Bartol