DISCLAIMER: Jacqueline Carey created them and did such a fabulous work that it's almost impossible to find an aspect of her characters she hasn't touched, expounded and written into perfect prose. ((Still, a girl gotta try.))
SUMMARY: Snippets of Joscelin's life between Kushiel's Chosen and Kushiel's Avatar.
FEEDBACK: I LOVE it. especially when you mention your favorite. *g*
A.N.: prompts from 12_stories (LJ comm)

Written for writercon100 (LJ comm). Matching request:fandom_of_one.

by Leni


White was Skaldia. White like the snow locking them up, ice white like Phèdre's cheeks when Gunter's thanes returned with Terre d'Ange blood on their swords. White like death, like the taste of failure, only to have her kiss him, lips that'd once been scarlet turning…

…blue. Murky blue. Gunmetal and merle swirling in La Serenissima waters. Losing Phèdre. Finding Phèdre. Phèdre falling and sinking and….

"You are so far away, my love." Soft fingers traveled up his chest.

Joscelin caught her hand, always marveled that she wore no marks of their travels. Kissed it. "But I always come back."



"They say there is many an empty room at Montrève," said one of the Souza cousins. "Maybe the Comtesse will have the time to decorate them now?"

Now that Phèdre had refused most of her patrons. "I haven't asked," he said, all courtesy.

"Leave the Cassiline alone, darling," her lover laughed, the glass of joie hanging in his hand obviously far from the first. "Much as I despair of your sharp tongue, I wouldn't risk losing it to Messire Verreuil's sword."

"It was a harmless question!" the girl protested, a well-practiced pout on her lips.

Joscelin bowed and walked away.



Terre d'Ange whispered his name long after the songs of victory had been sung. A Cassiline Brother. A Siovale son. A Queen's favorite.

Caught in Naamah's spell.

They exchanged conjectures of deceit, of having entered Delaunay's service only to seek favors from the notorious Naamah's servants in the household. They dreamed awake of Phèdre's skills, seduction tendrils so tempting they lured even a child of Cassiel.

None could guess at a small cave in the wilderness, blessed by gods and fortune.

None could divine the hundred steps taken, the thousand questions with impossible answers.

They whispered and pointed.

Let them.