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I took a breath. "Your highness - "
"Nikolai," he corrected. "But I've also been known to answer to 'sweetheart' or 'handsome. -- Leigh Bardugo
I've never understood this taste for otkazat'sya. Is it because you thought you were one of them for so long?"
"I had a taste for you, once." His head snapped up. He hadn't expected that. Saints, it was satisfying. -- Leigh Bardugo
I'm not what you think I am," I whispered desperately.
The Darkling stepped closer to me and said, his voice so low that only I could hear, "I doubt you have any idea what you are. -- Leigh Bardugo
I am ancient Alina.
I know things about power that you can barely guess -- Leigh Bardugo
You were meant to be my balance Aline.
You are the only person in the world who might rule with me, who might keep my powers in check -- Leigh Bardugo
Will you say it?
His grin faded and his grey eyes seemed to flicker.
"Aleksander -- Leigh Bardugo
What if I'm no better than you? What if instead of stopping you, I'm just another avalanche? -- Leigh Bardugo
Why don't you just admit that you wanted to belong to him? Why don't you admit that part of you still does? -- Leigh Bardugo
I'm the Sun Summoner. It gets dark when I say it does. -- Leigh Bardugo
It's true," I said softly. "You are stronger, wiser, infinite in experience." I leaned forward and whispered, my lips brushing the shell of his ear. "But I am an apt pupil. -- Leigh Bardugo
I already unleashed Baghra on Nikolai. He's going to think I stockpile vicious old women. -- Leigh Bardugo
I have loved you all my life, Mal. There is no end to our story. -- Leigh Bardugo
I want to kiss you," Nikolai said. "But I won't. Not until you're thinking of me instead of trying to forget him. -- Leigh Bardugo
You don't want to be doing this.
This is the only thing I want to be doing -- Leigh Bardugo
On a whim, I picked up a pen and flipped to the last page of the diary and wrote our names.
I wasn't sure why I did it. I just needed to say we had been there. -- Leigh Bardugo
Fight me as long as you're able.
You will find I have far more practice with eternity -- Leigh Bardugo
Tell him you see me when he takes you in his arms -- Leigh Bardugo
You are all I've ever wanted," he said. "You are the whole of my heart. -- Leigh Bardugo
A privateer learns to press any advantage."
"And a prince?"
"Princes get used to the word yes. -- Leigh Bardugo
He has served countless kings, faked countless deaths, bided his time, waiting for you. -- Leigh Bardugo
It seems to work better than jabbing them with a stick," he said.
"My jabbing arm is tired. -- Leigh Bardugo
I know what you thought, what you always thought of me.
It's so much easier that way, isn't it? -- Leigh Bardugo
And there's nothing wrong with being a lizard either. Unless you were born to be a hawk. -- Leigh Bardugo
What is wrong with you?" I whispered furiously.
"Nothing," he said, surprised. "I feel great."
"But how can you be so ... so jaunty?"
"Jaunty? I've never been jaunty. I hope never to be jaunty. -- Leigh Bardugo
I want you to know my name.
The name I was given, not the title I took for myself.
Will you have it?
"Aleksander -- Leigh Bardugo
Close your mouth before something flies in, I snapped. -- Leigh Bardugo
Whether I was a Saint or a queen or the most powerful Grisha who ever lived, I would always turn to him. -- Leigh Bardugo
He'd wanted me to believe in his ruthlessness.
Then I remembered his words from so long ago: Make me your villain. -- Leigh Bardugo
I've seen what you truly are," said the Darkling, "and I've never turned away. I never will. Can he say the same? -- Leigh Bardugo
Do you think I could have come to you again and again, if you had been less alone?
You called me and I answered -- Leigh Bardugo
We are alike," he said, "as no one else is, as no one else will ever be."
The truth of it rang through me. Like calls to like. -- Leigh Bardugo
I will stip away all that you know, all that you love....
Until you have no shelter byt me -- Leigh Bardugo
I sought Morozova amplifiers for you Alina, so that we can rule as equals -- Leigh Bardugo
She would have her ship and he would have his city. -- Leigh Bardugo
When we get our money, you can burn kruge to keep you warm."
"I'm going to pay someone to burn my kruge for me."
"Why don't you pay someone else to pay someone to burn your kruge for you? That's what the big players do. -- Leigh Bardugo
Can we get to the cuddling later? I want us ashore before dawn."
Mal sighed. "Eventually, I'm going to punch him."
"I will support you in that endeavor. -- Leigh Bardugo
Don't worry, tracker. You'll know when our deal is up ... I'll be certain you hear it when I make her scream. -- Leigh Bardugo
I got used to seeing him waiting for me at the end of corridors, or sitting at the edge of my bed when I fell asleep at night. When he didn't appear, I sometimes found myself looking for him or wondering why he hadn't come, and that frightened me most of all. -- Leigh Bardugo
And the Darkling?"
"I tried to kill him."
"As one does. -- Leigh Bardugo
The problem with waiting is that it makes us weak -- Leigh Bardugo
The Darkling just stared out into the waves. I considered shoving him over the railing. Sure, he was hundreds of years old, but could he swim? -- Leigh Bardugo
You live in a single moment. I live in a thousand. -- Leigh Bardugo
I've waged the war you forced me to, Alina," said the Darkling. "If you hadn't run from me, the Second Army would still be intact. All those Grisha would still be alive. Your tracker would be safe and happy with his regiment. When will it be enough? When will you let me stop? -- Leigh Bardugo
How could he be so cruel and still so human? -- Leigh Bardugo
A single laugh burst from his lips, and a fin spray of blood settled over his chin. "Like this?"
His legs faltered. He tried to stop his descent, but his arm gave way and he crumpled, rolling to his back. It's simple enough. Like calls to like. The Darkling's own power. Morozova's own blood. -- Leigh Bardugo
I've been busy. I might have some surprises in store for the Darkling yet."
"Please tell me you plan to dress up as a volcra and jump out of a cake."
"Well, now you've ruined the surprise. -- Leigh Bardugo
The Darkling slumped back in his chair. "Fine," he said with a weary shrug. "Make me your villain. -- Leigh Bardugo
Then the memory of the Darkling's kiss blew through me and rattled my concentration, scattering my thoughts like leaves and making my heart swoop and dive like a bird borne aloft by uncertain currents. -- Leigh Bardugo
The problem with wanting," he whispered, his mouth trailing along my jaw until it hovered over my lips, "is that it makes us weak. -- Leigh Bardugo
We all have our secrets. -- Leigh Bardugo
You two have a bad habit of acting like fools and calling it heroic. -- Leigh Bardugo
You begged me for clemency once," he called over the dead reaches of the Fold, over the hungry shrieks of the horrors he had made. "Is this your idea of mercy?"
Another bullet hit the sand, only inches from us. Yes, I thought as the power rose up inside me, the mercy you taught me. -- Leigh Bardugo
You sound just like the Darkling."
"If you ever have trouble telling us apart, look for the person who isn't torturing you or trying to kill Mal. That will be me. -- Leigh Bardugo
The stag had been showing me my strength-not just the price of mercy but the power it bestowed. And mercy was something the Darkling would never understand. -- Leigh Bardugo
I knew there was no bottom to the Darkling's pain. He would just keep falling and falling. -- Leigh Bardugo
In this moment he was just a boy -brilliant, blessed with too much power, burdened by eternity. -- Leigh Bardugo
I don't care if you think I'm a Saint or a fool or the Darkling's whore. If you want to remain at the Little Palace you will follow me. And if you don't like it, you will be gone by tonight, or I will have you in chains. I am a solider. I am the Sun Summoners. And I'm the only chance you have. -- Leigh Bardugo
I seem to be a victim of my own wishes where you are concerned. -- Leigh Bardugo
"What's so funny?"
"I just pictured the Darkling being cornered by a sweaty duchess trying to have her way with him. -- Leigh Bardugo
I didn't have to stand here in the darkling arms. I could vanish from his grip, slide back into consciousness and the safety of a stone room hidden in the mountaintop. But I didn't want to go. Despite, everything, I wanted this whispered confidence .
"Yes." I breathed. -- Leigh Bardugo
I've been waiting for you a long time, Alina" He said. "You and I are going to change the world. -- Leigh Bardugo
He studied me for a long moment. He had always watched me this way, as if I were an equation that didn't quite tally. -- Leigh Bardugo
I felt it then, the vibration along that invisible tether. I pushed away from it. I would not go to the Darkling now. I wouldn't go to him ever again. But still, I knew wherever he was, he was grieving. -- Leigh Bardugo
Don't feel too bad, tracker," said the Darkling. "All men can be made fools. -- Leigh Bardugo
I will tell you a story, one I used to tell to a little boy with dark hair. A silent boy who rarely laughs, who listened more closely than I realized. A boy who had a name and not a title -- Leigh Bardugo
So I'm the Darkling's prisoner?"
"You're under his protection."
"What's the difference?"
"Pray you never find out. -- Leigh Bardugo
I just know there's no way to live without pain
no matter how long or short your life is. People let you down. You get hurt and do damage in return. -- Leigh Bardugo
Sturmhond had a way of talking that made me want to shoot someone. Preferably him. -- Leigh Bardugo
His eyes fluttered shut. "Don't let me be alone," he murmured. And then he was gone. -- Leigh Bardugo
Why does the brave druskelle Matthias Helvar eat no meat? 'Tis a sad story indeed, my child. His teeth were winnowed away by a vexatious Grisha, and now he can eat only pudding. -- Leigh Bardugo
Have you even held a command? Nikolai asked. I'd once led a seminar of junior mapmakers, but I didn't think that was what he meant. -- Leigh Bardugo
Were you always this much trouble?"
"I like to think of myself as delightfully complex. -- Leigh Bardugo
Pull your shirt up over your mouth," he told Wylan.
"Stop being dense. You're cuter when you're smart."
Wylan's cheeks went pink. He scowled and pulled his collar up. -- Leigh Bardugo
Was that chloro gas?"
"Definitely cuter when you're smart. -- Leigh Bardugo
You let Mal come back for me. After you gave me your vow."
"He broke away," said Tamar.
I lifted a brow. The day Mal could break Tolya's hold was indeed a day of miracles.
Tolya hung his head and heaved his huge shoulders. "Forgive me," he said. "I couldn't be the one to keep him from you. -- Leigh Bardugo
If you two keep fighting, you're going to get us all killed, and I have a lot more card games I need to lose. -- Leigh Bardugo
A gambler, a convict, a wayward son, a lost Grisha, a Suli girl who had become a killer, a boy from the Barrel who had become something worse. -- Leigh Bardugo
Inej's mother and father might still shed tears for the daughter they'd lost, but if Inej died tonight, there would be no one to grieve for the girl she was now. -- Leigh Bardugo
Gambler, a convict, a wayward son, a lost Grisha, a Suli girl who had become a killer, a boy from the Barrel who had become something worse. Inej -- Leigh Bardugo
Matthias locked the cell door and hurried down the passage toward Nina, toward something more. -- Leigh Bardugo
I am not ruined. I am ruination. -- Leigh Bardugo
I hope you weren't looking to me to be the voice of reason. I keep to a strict diet of ill-advised enthusiasm and heartfelt regret. -- Leigh Bardugo
But when someone does wrong, when we make mistakes, we don't say we're sorry. We promise to make amends."
"Mati en sheva yelu. This action will have no echo. It means we won't repeat the same mistakes, that we won't continue to do harm. -- Leigh Bardugo
Being around Nikolai was always like this, watching him shift and change, revealing secrets as he went. He reminded me of the wooden nesting dolls I'd played with as a child. Except instead of getting smaller, he just kept getting grander and more mysterious. -- Leigh Bardugo
For a girl who hated looking at herself, I was at risk of becoming vain. -- Leigh Bardugo
No matter what they thought of him, they'd walk a little taller tonight. It was why they stayed, why they gave their best approximation of loyalty for him -- Leigh Bardugo
Then tailor him," Kaz said coldly. The challenge in Kaz's eyes was clear. So he knew she'd been struggling. Of course he did. Dirtyhands never missed a trick. -- Leigh Bardugo
I will have you without armor. Those were the words she'd said to Kaz aboard the Ferolind, desperate for some sign that he might open himself to her, that they could be more than two wary creatures united by their distrust of the world. -- Leigh Bardugo
Go home to Ravka, Nina. Be free, as you were meant to be. Be a warrior, as you always have been. Just save some mercy for my people. There has to be a Fjerda worth saving. Promise me -- Leigh Bardugo
Mal had made me promise not to cry. He'd said it would only make it harder on him. So I swallowed my tears. I kissed him one last time and let Ivan lead me away. -- Leigh Bardugo
She'd hurt him, but she'd attempted everything in her power to make things right. She'd shown him in a thousand ways that she was honorable and strong and generous and very human, maybe even more vividly human than anyone he'd ever known. -- Leigh Bardugo
When evening fell the boy would bring the girl a glass of tea, a slice of lemon cake, an apple blossom floating in a blue cup. He would kiss her neck and whisper new names in her ear: beauty, beloved, cherished, my heart. -- Leigh Bardugo
Good luck, Oretsev. Find the firebird, and when this is over, I'll see you well rewarded. A farmhouse in Udova. A dacha near the city. Whatever you want."
"I don't need any of that. Just ... " He dropped Nikolai's hand and looked away. "Deserve her. -- Leigh Bardugo
Maybe love was superstition, a prayer we said to keep the truth of loneliness at bay. -- Leigh Bardugo
The boom, the bang, the flint and fuss. -- Leigh Bardugo
Beauty was your armor. Fragile stuff, all show. But what's inside you? That's steel. It's brave and unbreakable. And it doesn't need fixing. -- Leigh Bardugo
Do you answer a question directly?"
"Hard to say. Ah, there, I've done it again -- Leigh Bardugo
The moment our lips met, I knew with pure and piercing certainty that I would have waited for him forever. -- Leigh Bardugo
She smiled then, a small smile of such aching sadness that it was hard to look at. "You think I don't love my son," she said. "But I do." "It is because I love him that I will not let him put himself beyond redemption. -- Leigh Bardugo
If you ever cared about me at all, don't follow. -- Leigh Bardugo
I have loved you all my life, Mal," I whispered through my tears. "There is no end to our story. -- Leigh Bardugo
Botkin cannot build house from such little twigs!" he shouted at me, giving my upper arm a squeeze. "Eat something! -- Leigh Bardugo
What are you two doing barefoot and half naked in the mud?" asked a familiar voice. "Looking for truffles, I hope? -- Leigh Bardugo
The storm had come out of nowhere, tossing the ship like a toy on the waves. The sea had played along until it had tired of the game, and dragged their boat under in a tangle of rope and sail and screaming men. -- Leigh Bardugo
There was no sound but it own for falls and the crackling of the flames behind us. No rustle came from the trees, no insect buzz or nightbird call. The woods were sent in their grief. -- Leigh Bardugo
Next time I'll try getting captured. Just to keep things interesting." He tossed Mal a rifle. "Shall we?"
"I can't tell who's who!" I protested.
"We're the side that's hopelessly outnumbered. -- Leigh Bardugo
I wonder what Matthias would have to say about that outfit." "He wouldn't approve." "He doesn't approve of anything about you. But when you laugh, he perks up like a tulip in fresh water." Nina snorted. "Matthias the tulip." "The big, brooding, yellow tulip. -- Leigh Bardugo
Inej had once offered to teach him how to fall. "The trick is not getting knocked down," he'd told her with a laugh. "No, Kaz," she'd said, "the trick is in getting back up. -- Leigh Bardugo
And get me clean clothes and fresh water." "Since when am I your valet?" "Man with a knife, remember?" he said over his shoulder. "Man with a gun!" Jesper called after him. -- Leigh Bardugo
Her blades were reliable. And they made her feel like she'd been born with proper claws. -- Leigh Bardugo
He saw that Jesper was staring at his hands. "What were you expecting?" Kaz growled.
"Claws, at least,"Jesper said, shifting his gaze to his own bony feet. "Possibly a spiny thumb. -- Leigh Bardugo
I didn't know what to say to Mal. I never did these days. But maybe I could just start with the truth: that I was lost and confused, and maybe losing my mind, that I scared myself sometimes, and that I missed him so much it was like physical pain. -- Leigh Bardugo
I thought the love I'd had for him belonged to the past, to the foolish, lonely girl I never wanted to be again. I'd tried to bury that girl and the love she'd felt, just as I'd tried to bury my power. But I wouldn't make that mistake again. -- Leigh Bardugo
They sang together, fumbling through the verses, hopelessly out of key, until the lanterns burned low. -- Leigh Bardugo
Nina glanced from Inej to Kaz and saw they both wore the same expression. Nina knew that look. It came after the shipwreck, when the tide moved against you and the sky had gone dark. It was the first sight of land, the hope of shelter and even salvation that might await you on a distant shore. -- Leigh Bardugo
You dug this grave. Go lie in it. -- Leigh Bardugo
No mourners. No funerals. Among them, it passed for 'good luck. -- Leigh Bardugo
I had spared the stag's life. The power of that life belonged to me as surely as it belonged to the man who had taken it. -- Leigh Bardugo
The living world had disappeared. Darkness fell around us, black, weightless, and absolute. We were in the Fold. -- Leigh Bardugo
You are a stolen painting, Kuwei. Too recognizable to sell on the open market, too valuable to leave lying around. You are worthless to me. -- Leigh Bardugo
The heart is an arrow. It demands aim to land true. -- Leigh Bardugo
We'd made the wise choice, done the right thing. I had to believe that logic would bring comfort in time. Tonight, there was just this too-quiet room, the ache of loss, knowledge deep and final as the tolling of a bell: Something good has gone. -- Leigh Bardugo
Maybe you're hungry," said Zoya. "I always get mean when I'm hungry. -- Leigh Bardugo
Tell me, priest,' I ordered, 'or I'll cut you open right here, and your followers can try to pray you back together. -- Leigh Bardugo
Speak, she begged silently. Give me a reason to stay. For all his selfishness and cruelty, Kaz was still the boy who had saved her. She wanted to believe he was worth saving, too. -- Leigh Bardugo
Six of Crows
A smol precious deadly flower, two gaybies, a beautiful Grisha warrior, a grumpy convict, and their brilliant, fearless (and sometimes clueless) leader perform a heist of epic proportions. -- Leigh Bardugo
We didn't quite fit together. We had edges so jagged we cut each other sometimes, -- Leigh Bardugo
She's like a dessert-hoarding dragon." Alys -- Leigh Bardugo
Every act of violence was deliberate, and every favor came with enough strings attached to stage a puppet show. -- Leigh Bardugo
I'd learned to avoid mirrors. They never seemed to show me what I wanted to see. -- Leigh Bardugo
And feast on the dead, I thought with a shudder. As if he could read my thoughts, he pressed a hand to my shoulder. His fingers were long and white, splaying over my arm like a waxen spider. If the gesture was meant to comfort me, it failed. -- Leigh Bardugo
Pick up the pace," Kaz said, eyeing his watch.
"If I spill a single drop of this, it will burn straight through the floor onto my father's dinner guests."
"Take your time. -- Leigh Bardugo
In the end, Kaz Brekker was a just a boy, and she'd let him lead her to this fate. -- Leigh Bardugo
That boy had betrayed his weakness in a single glance, had ceded the war for the sake of a single battle, and put Inej--all of them--in danger. -- Leigh Bardugo
Trickery is not my native tongue, but I may learn to speak it yet. -- Leigh Bardugo
In the end, maybe love just meant longing for something impossibly bright and forever out of reach. -- Leigh Bardugo
I winced. "I shouldn't have said that." "You once put goose droppings in my shoes, Alina. A bad mood I can handle." He glanced at me and said, "We all know the burden you're carrying. You don't have to bear it alone." I -- Leigh Bardugo
There wasn't even a bed in the room, just a narrow settee where Nina curled up every night. When Kaz had asked Nina why, she'd simply said, "I don't want anyone getting ideas." "A man doesn't need a bed to get ideas, Nina. -- Leigh Bardugo
And there's no way I'm leaving you alone with Prince Perfect."
"So you don't trust me to resist his charms?"
"I don't even trust myself. I've never seen anyone work a crowd the way he does. I'm pretty sure the rocks and trees are getting ready to swear fealty to him. -- Leigh Bardugo
It felt like something that was meant to be kept secret, a new seed that might grow to something extraordinary if it wasn't forced to bloom too soon. -- Leigh Bardugo
Jes, I've thought about this-"
"Thought of me? Late at night? What was I wearing?"
"I've thought about your powers," Wylan said, cheeks flushing pinker. -- Leigh Bardugo
She lived in happy solitude, and grew old, and never worried when her beauty faded, for in her reflection she always saw a free woman. -- Leigh Bardugo
The fox and the nightingale made a quiet life together. A lesser creature might have held Koja's mistakes against him, might have mocked him for his pride. But Lula was not only clever. She was wise. -- Leigh Bardugo
Alone in the gloom, surrounded by books, it was hard not to feel overwhelmed. -- Leigh Bardugo
The boy held her tighter, murmured soft words to lull her to sleep.
"It's only a nightmare," he whispered. "The dreams will stop."
He didn't understand. The dreams were the only place it was safe to use her power now, and she longed for them. -- Leigh Bardugo
Sometimes when we find love we pretend it away, or ignore it, or tell ourselves we're imagining it. Because it's the most painful kind of hope there is. By indifference . By death. -- Leigh Bardugo
Mal adjusted his hood to better hide his face and tipped up his mask, then reached forward and did the same with mine. He leaned in. Our jackal masks bumped snouts.
I started to laugh.
"Next time, different costumes," he grumbled.
"Bigger hats? -- Leigh Bardugo
I feel you slipping away from me, and I don't know how to stop it. -- Leigh Bardugo
Eli's long fingers cupped her face, traced the nape of her neck, kept her still, as if he needed to give her every bit of his attention, as if he could learn her like a language, plot her like a course. Eli kissed Gracie like she was a song and he was determined to hear every note. -- Leigh Bardugo
The thought filled me with grief, grief for the dreams we'd shared, for the love I'd felt, for the hopeful girl I would never be again. -- Leigh Bardugo
Purpose," he said thoughtfully. "You know you can't stop them all.'
"If I don't try, I won't stop any. -- Leigh Bardugo
Greed may do your bidding, but death serves no man. -- Leigh Bardugo
Good luck hitting a skinny little schooner cutting through the waves bound for fortune and glory."
"I'll quote you on that when a cannonball lands in my lap," said Nina. -- Leigh Bardugo
It was fatiguing, but nothing was sacred to the Kerch except trade, so she'd gone out of her way to make the risk much higher than the reward when it came to disrespecting her. -- Leigh Bardugo
They do love their pretty colors," grumbled Tolya. "Don't give me any ideas," I whispered. "Maybe I'll decide my personal guard should wear bright yellow pantaloons." For the first time, I saw an expression very much like fear cross his face. -- Leigh Bardugo
That night, Kaz took Saskia's red ribbon from beneath his pillow. He rolled it into a neat spiral and clutched it in his palm. He lay in bed and tried to pray, but all he could think about was the magician's coin: there and then gone. -- Leigh Bardugo
It's a promise to be better than I was. It's a vow that if I can't be anything else to you, at least I can be a weapon in your hand. And I guess it's a reminder that wanting and deserving aren't the same thing. -- Leigh Bardugo
But if Koja had words, then he had hope. -- Leigh Bardugo
I need to see Jakob Hertzoon."
Kaz felt like he was about to climb out of his skin. He pointed through the window. "Jakob fucking Hertzoon. I want to talk to him. -- Leigh Bardugo
What is infinite?" she recited. I knew that text well. "The universe and the greed of men," I quoted back to her. -- Leigh Bardugo
There is something more powerful than any army. Something strong enough to topple kings, and even Darklings. Do you know what that thing is?"
I shook my head, inching away from him.
"Faith," he breathed, his black eyes wild. "Faith. -- Leigh Bardugo
But the girl had spent long years being invisible. She'd already had a ghost's life, hidden from the world and from herself. Better than anyone, she knew the power of things long buried. -- Leigh Bardugo
Maybe that's why I wrote this letter,Alina. Maybe it's a promise-that I'll survive tomorrow and the day after that, and somehow, no matter what it takes, I'll see you safe again...
M. -- Leigh Bardugo
What you want and what the world needs are not always in accord, Kaz. Praying and wishing are not the same thing. -- Leigh Bardugo
No matter the height of the mountain, the climbing is the same. -- Leigh Bardugo
She was welcoming and perfect in his arms. He kissed her, buried his face in the sweet hollow of her neck. Her curls brushed his cheeks, and he felt that if he could just hold her a little longer, every wound, every hurt, every bad thing would melt away. -- Leigh Bardugo
Jesper: "If Pekka Rollins kills us all, I'm going to get Wylan's ghost to teach my ghost how to play the flute just so that I can annoy the hell out of your ghost."
Kaz: "I'll just hire Matthias' ghost to kick your ghost's ass."
Matthias: "My ghost won't associate with your ghost. -- Leigh Bardugo
Apparently, Adrik and Harshaw had been evicted for the night. A very bleary Genya and David blinked up at us from beneath the covers of a single narrow cot.
Mal gave a little cough. Can't say I'm surprised. -- Leigh Bardugo
Huh," Zoya said to Adrik. "I'm impressed." At the elation that burst over his face, she groaned. "Never mind. I'm downgrading that to grudging approval. -- Leigh Bardugo
Abruptly, Adrik snarled, 'I'm glad Sergei's dead. I'm just sorry I didn't get to wring his neck myself.'
'You'd need two hands for that,' said Zoya.
There was a brief, terrible silence, then Adrik scowled and said, 'Okay, stab him. -- Leigh Bardugo
Facts are for the unimaginative. -- Leigh Bardugo
Nikolai laughed. "Next time, bring a flask. Every time he changes his mind, take a sip."
I groaned. "I'd be passed out on the floor before the hour was up. -- Leigh Bardugo
I just don't get it. I've spent my whole life hiding the things I can't do. Why run from the amazing things you can do? -- Leigh Bardugo
old women must know something, or they wouldn't live to gather wrinkles and yell from their front stoops. -- Leigh Bardugo
I have been made to protect you. Even in death, I will find a way. -- Leigh Bardugo
He picked her up and spun her in the air.
"You're going to strain something if you keep doing that," she said with another radiant smile.
"You're light as a feather."
"I do not want to see that bird. Now let's go get me a stack of waffles twice as tall as you. -- Leigh Bardugo
Nina is everything you say. It's too much."
"Mmm," Inej murmured, taking a sip from her mug. "Maybe you're just not enough. -- Leigh Bardugo
Just because you escape one trap, doesn't mean you will escape the next. -- Leigh Bardugo
Brick by brick.
Brick by brick, I will destroy you.
"It was the promise that let him sleep at night, that drove him every day, that kept Jordie's ghost at bay. Because a quick death was too good for Pekka Rollins. -- Leigh Bardugo
I think the hard work of writing is just how long a book is terrible before it's good."--Leigh Bardugo -- Leigh Bardugo
Simple as that," said Nina. "Did you know I'm next in line for the Fjerdan throne? They call me Princess Ilse of Engelsberg." "There is no princess of Engelsberg," said Matthias. "It's a fishing town." Nina shrugged. "If we're going to lie to ourselves, we might as well be grand about it. -- Leigh Bardugo
Dirtyhands had come to see the rough work done. -- Leigh Bardugo
Who'd deny a poor criple his cane?
If the cripple is you, then any man with sense. -- Leigh Bardugo
Maybe your tutors didn't cover this lesson, but you do not argue with a man covered in blood and a knife up his sleeve. -- Leigh Bardugo
No one knew who he was. No one knew where he came from. He'd become Kaz Brekker, cripple and confidence man, bastard of the Barrel. The -- Leigh Bardugo
One of his hands balanced on his cane. The other rested at his side next to her. She'd need only move the smallest amount and they would be touching. He was that close. He was that far from reach. -- Leigh Bardugo
He laughed then. It was the first time I'd ever heard his laugh, a lovely dark sound that rippled through the air. -- Leigh Bardugo
"But effective. Being angry at Kaz for being ruthless is like being angry at a stove for being hot. -- Leigh Bardugo
The trap is loneliness, and none of us escapes it. -- Leigh Bardugo
Maybe I should lie down on a table in the workroom and wait to see if he welds something to me." "I think that's the way most great love stories begin. -- Leigh Bardugo
A chemical weevil," said Jesper, "But Wylan still hasn't named it. My vote is for the Wyvil."
"That's terrible," said Wylan.
"It's brilliant," Jesper winked. "Just like you. -- Leigh Bardugo
Wylan didn't think he imagined the tension in the rasp of Kaz's voice. Kaz never yelled the way Wylan's father did, but Wylan had learned to listen for that low note, that bit of black harmony that crept into Kaz's tone when things were about to get dangerous. -- Leigh Bardugo
You'll get what's coming to you some day, Brekker."
"I will," said Kaz, "if there's any justice in the world. And we all know how likely that is. -- Leigh Bardugo
She was Inej Ghafa, and she would not quiver like a rabbit in a snare. -- Leigh Bardugo
This was his soul made flesh, the truth of him laid bare in the blazing sun, shorn of mystery and shadow. This was the truth behind the handsome face and the miraculous powers, the truth that was the dead and empty space between the stars, a wasteland peopled by frightened monsters. -- Leigh Bardugo
Do you take anything seriously?"
"Not if I can help it. Makes life so tedious. -- Leigh Bardugo
At night, she slipped into the shelter of the boy's arms as they stood together on deck, picking out constellations from the vast spill of stars: the Hunter, the Scholar, the Three Foolish Sons, the bright spokes of the Spinning Wheel, the Southern Palace with its six crooked spires. -- Leigh Bardugo
If I want to watch men dig holes to fall into, I'll find myself a cemetery. -- Leigh Bardugo
You were meant for more than me, and I'll die fighting to give it to you. But please don't ask me to pretend it's easy. -- Leigh Bardugo
One minute he made her blush and the next he made her want to commit murder. -- Leigh Bardugo
Jesper knocked his head against the hull and cast his eyes heavenward. 'Fine. But if Pekka Rollins kills us all, I'm going to get Wylan's ghost to teach my ghost how to play the flute just so that I can annoy the hell out of your ghost. -- Leigh Bardugo
Too much champagne?"
"Silly girl," she said, looping her arm through mine. "There's no such thing as too much champagne. Though your head will try to tell you otherwise tomorrow. -- Leigh Bardugo
No matter what street law decreed, this night smelled like violence. Go on, give those guns -- Leigh Bardugo
Street law dictated that for a parley of this kind each lieutenant be seconded by two of his foot soldiers and that they all be unarmed. Parley. The word felt like a deception - strangely prim, an antique. No matter what street law decreed, this night smelled like violence. -- Leigh Bardugo
Her voice was gentle, patient - why was it making him want to set fire to something? -- Leigh Bardugo
How did you fare with the Queen?" he asked.
"I have no idea," I said honestly. "Everything she said was perfectly nice, but the whole time she was looking at me as if I were something her dog spit up. -- Leigh Bardugo
Do I get to wear a fancy hat?"
"The fanciest," I said. "And possibly a cape."
"Will there be plumes?"
"Oh, yes. Several."
"Then I'm in. -- Leigh Bardugo
I wanted to believe anything so that I wouldn't have to face the future alone. The problem with wanting is that it makes us weak. -- Leigh Bardugo
If you ever get tired of skin and bones," she called to Mal, "I've got something to tempt you." I stiffened. Mal glanced over his shoulder. Slowly, he looked her up and down. "No," he said flatly. "You don't. -- Leigh Bardugo
Kaz didn't look remotely entertained. "The Ravkan king lets you negotiate for him in matters of state?" he asked skeptically.
"Occasionally," said Sturmhond. "Especially if less than savory personages are involved. You have a reputation, Mister Brekker."
"So do you. -- Leigh Bardugo
We're all someone's monster. -- Leigh Bardugo
Morozova's stag. Rusalye. The firebird. Legends come to life before my eyes, just to die in front of me. -- Leigh Bardugo
Sorry," I mumbled.
"Maybe you're hungry," said Zoya. "I always get mean when I'm hungry."
"Are you hungry all the time?" asked Harshaw.
"You haven't seen me mean. When you do, you'll require a very big hanky."
He snorted. "To dry my tears?"
"To stanch the bleeding. -- Leigh Bardugo
The others. Swear to me you'll at least try to help them, to make them see. -- Leigh Bardugo
The world was made of miracles, unexpected earthquakes, storms that came from nowhere and might reshape a continent. -- Leigh Bardugo
There's always more."
"More money, more mayhem, more scores to settle. Was there never another dream? -- Leigh Bardugo
Aleksander," I whispered. A boy's name, given up. Almost forgotten. -- Leigh Bardugo
Kaz is ... I don't know, he's like nobody else I've ever known. He surprises me." "Yes. Like a hive of bees in your dresser drawer." Jesper barked a laugh. "Just like that. -- Leigh Bardugo
Do you blame me for every mistake I made? For every girl I tumbled? For every dumb thing I've said? Because if we start running tallies on stupid, you know who's going to come out ahead. -- Leigh Bardugo
If you don't care about money, Nina dear, call it by its other names."
"Kruge? Scrub? Kaz's one true love?"
"Freedom, security, retribution. -- Leigh Bardugo
You still may die in the Dregs."
Inej's dark eyes had glinted. "I may. But I'll die on my feet with a knife in my hand. -- Leigh Bardugo
He made himself refocus on Inej's feet. "Saints," he said.
Inej grimaced. "That bad?"
"No, you just have really ugly feet."
"Ugly feet that go you on this roof. -- Leigh Bardugo
I shivered in my kefta, comforted by the soft brush of the fox fur. -- Leigh Bardugo
Back at the treasury Matthias had said, He's one of us. She liked that word. Us. A word without division or borders. It seemed full of hope. -- Leigh Bardugo
Zoya stared up at Nina in wonder. "You're alive," she said. Her gaze slid to Matthias, thrashing like the biggest, angriest butterfly ever pinned to a page. "And you've made a new friend. -- Leigh Bardugo
No mourners, no funerals. Another way of saying good luck. But it was something more. A dark wink to the fact that there would be no expensive burials for people like them, no marble markers to remember their names, no wreaths of myrtle and rose. -- Leigh Bardugo
Nina, I am with you because you let me be with you. There is no greater honor than to stand by your side. -- Leigh Bardugo
Saints, Kaz, you actually look happy."
"Don't be ridiculous," he snapped. But there was no mistaking it. Kaz Brekker was grinning like an idiot. -- Leigh Bardugo
He knew he was being reckless, selfish, but wasn't that why they called him Dirtyhands? No job too risky. No deed too low. Dirtyhands would see the rough work done. -- Leigh Bardugo
Just to be clear, I'm not really interested in defending your honor. -- Leigh Bardugo
Lying in the dark, waiting for sleep, I wondered if thos paths would just keep taking us further and further apart, and if a day might come when we would be strangers to each other once again. -- Leigh Bardugo
You must marry ugly man," I said. "Very fet." I held my arms out in front of me, indicating a giant belly. "He weeel make you heppy." I heard Mal snort beneath his mask. -- Leigh Bardugo
She still talks of fairness. What does fairness have to do with any of this? The people curse my name and pay for you, but you're the one who is ready to abandon them. I'm the one who will give them power over their enemies. I'm the one who will free them from the tyranny of the king. -- Leigh Bardugo
They'd even made him imitate the different patterns of the bells. A necessity, but he'd felt like a fool chanting, Bing bong bing bing bong. No, wait, bing bing bong bing bing. -- Leigh Bardugo
She righted herself, her balance returning. Had she really thought the world didn't change? She was a fool. The world was made of miracles, unexpected earthquakes, storms that came from nowhere and might reshape a continent. The boy beside her. The future before her. Anything was possible. -- Leigh Bardugo
Kaz narrowed his eyes. I'm not some character out of a children's story who plays harmless pranks and steals from the rich to give to the poor. -- Leigh Bardugo
Matthias knew if he started trailing after Nina on missions like some kind of watchdog, she'd put her hands on those glorious hips and demonstrate her knowledge of profanity in several different languages. -- Leigh Bardugo
I was just a girl again, but this girl didn't owe her strength to fate or chance or a grand destiny. I'd been born with my power; the rest I'd earned. -- Leigh Bardugo
I need you to do something for me."
He snorted. "You mean other than deserting the army, scaling mountains, and freezing my ass off on the cold ground every night?"
"Yes. -- Leigh Bardugo
I don't think-"
"Clearly. Why start now? -- Leigh Bardugo
Everyone okay?" Mal asked.
"Never better," said Genya shakily.
David raised his hand. "I've been better. -- Leigh Bardugo
Just this minute, I'll settle for an apology, she decided. And I wont' board the boat without one. Even if Kaz isn't sorry, he can pretend. He at least owes me his best imitation of a human being. -- Leigh Bardugo
STRYMAKTFJERDAN. Fjerdan might. -- Leigh Bardugo
(Some girl) "You said we'd have breakfast!"
(Jasper) "If i live, i'll buy you waffles."
"You don't have enough money to buy her waffles," Wylan grumbled.
"Be quite. We're in a library. -- Leigh Bardugo
Thanks for being my best friend and making my life bearable. Oh, and sorry I fell in love with you for a while there. -- Leigh Bardugo
All these people dead, and I miss pretty things. -- Leigh Bardugo
I would have come for you. And if I couldn't walk, I'd crawl to you, and no matter how broken we were, we'd fight our way out together-knives drawn, pistols blazing. Because that's what we do. We never stop fighting. -- Leigh Bardugo
He'd told her they would fight their way out. Knives drawn, pistols blazing. Because that's what we do. She would fight for him, but she could not heal him. She would not waste her life trying. -- Leigh Bardugo
Knives drawn, pistols blazing. Because that's what we do. -- Leigh Bardugo
He was a collection of hard lines and tailored edges -- Leigh Bardugo
I have to spend the rest of my life finding ways to deserve a certain white-haired girl. She's very prickly, occasionally puts goose droppings in my shoes or tries to kill me. -- Leigh Bardugo
What is he doing?" asked Matthias.
"Performing an ancient Zemeni ritual," Kaz said.
"No. -- Leigh Bardugo
Mal shouted. I heard scuffling behind me and knew Tolya had taken hold of him. "Alina!" His voice was raw white wood, torn from the heart of a tree. I did not turn. -- Leigh Bardugo
You know I'd be lost without you." "You've never been lost in your life," I scoffed. I was the mapmaker, but Mal could find true north blindfolded and standing on his head. -- Leigh Bardugo
It's hard to keep track of all your wisdom. -- Leigh Bardugo
Chaos will come and I will be its master. -- Leigh Bardugo
Jesper could never tell how much of what Kaz got away with was smarts and planning and how much was dumb luck. -- Leigh Bardugo
I'm used to being the center of attention wherever I go. I've been told I could charm the shoes off a racehorse midstride, and yet you seem impervious. -- Leigh Bardugo
In those moments, it was easy to believe that Izumrud still lived somewhere, waiting to be woken by the call of heroes, dreaming of the fine meal he would have it only some hapless child would walk into his mouth. A beast like that rests; he does not die. -- Leigh Bardugo
When you can't beat the odds, change the game. -- Leigh Bardugo
You were like a stranger, Alina. Beautiful," he said. "Terrible. -- Leigh Bardugo
I'm going to get my money, Kaz vowed. And I'm going to get my girl. -- Leigh Bardugo
We meet fear. We greet the unexpected visitor and listen to what he has to tell us. When fear arrives, something is about to happen. -- Leigh Bardugo
Long ago, after a bad fall, her father had explained that only fools were fearless. We meet rear, he'd said. We greet the unexpected visitor and listen to what he has to tell us. When fear arrives, something is about to happen. (p51) -- Leigh Bardugo
The ox feels the yoke, but does the bird feel the weight of its wings? -- Leigh Bardugo
He doesn't need a donkey," says Ana Kuya. "He has a wife. -- Leigh Bardugo
I opened my mouth, but the same words came to me again and again.
I will not scream. I will not scream. I will not scream. -- Leigh Bardugo
Usually people don't start hating each other until a week into the job, but you two have a head start. -- Leigh Bardugo
It is always the same trap," she said gently. "You longed for conversation. The bear craved jokes. The gray wolf missed music. The boar just wanted someone to tell her troubles to. The trap is loneliness, and none of us escapes it. Not even me. -- Leigh Bardugo
Tell me some lies. -- Leigh Bardugo
I don't hold a grudge. I cradle it. I coddle it. I feed it fine cuts of meat and send it to the best schools. I nurture my grudges, Rollins. -- Leigh Bardugo
We are the Triumvirate. We do not take orders from Kerch street rats with dubious haircuts. -- Leigh Bardugo
I'm not sure why I began this," she admitted. "But I know why I have to finish. I know why fate brought me here, why it placed me in the path of this prize. -- Leigh Bardugo
There is no greater power than faith, and there will be no greater army than one driven by it. -- Leigh Bardugo
Of course not," said Sturmhond. "Anything worth doing always starts as a bad idea. -- Leigh Bardugo
They don't know who we are. Not really. They don't know what we've done, what we've managed together. So let's go show them they picked the wrong damn fight. -- Leigh Bardugo
No mourners," Jesper said as he tossed his rifle to Rotty. "No funerals," the rest of the Dregs murmured in reply. -- Leigh Bardugo
He'd known even then, though: He'd start as a grunt, but the Dregs would become his army. -- Leigh Bardugo
I am a King-"
"And I am a Saint. Shall we see whose word carries more weight? -- Leigh Bardugo
He had become a great beast, and yet that beast would devour him -- Leigh Bardugo
It's a symbol, Helvar. If your god is so delicate, maybe you should get a new one. Let's get out of here. -- Leigh Bardugo
Zoya picked up a kefta hanging over the back of my chair. It was gold brocade, the sleeves and hem embroidered lavishly in blue, the cuffs marked with jeweled sunbursts. "Sable," she said to me, stroking the lining. "I have never loathed you more. -- Leigh Bardugo
Good," said Kaz, but the answer didn't come as quickly as Matthias might have expected. He fears for her, Matthias thought, and he does not like it. For once, he could sympathize with the demjin. -- Leigh Bardugo
At some point, Jesper realized Kaz was gone.
"Not one for goodbyes, is he?" he muttered.
"He doesn't say goodbye," Inej said. She kept her eyes on the lights of the canal. Somewhere in the garden, a night bird began to sing. "He just lets go. -- Leigh Bardugo
He watches her the way Harshaw watches fire. Like he'll never have enough of her. Like he's trying to capture what he can before she's gone. -- Leigh Bardugo
It's a great honor," said Fedyor. "To save a life. You saved many. -- Leigh Bardugo
She'd laughed, and if he could have bottled the sound and gotten drunk on it every night, he would have. It terrified him. -- Leigh Bardugo
Really?" asked Nina, tugging at her corset. Pollen from one of the irises had scattered over her bare shoulder. Matthias had the overwhelming urge to brush it away with his lips. It's probably poisonous, he told himself sternly. Maybe he should take a walk. -- Leigh Bardugo
Normal people don't wall their wives up in insane asylums. They don't disinherit their sons because they didn't get the child they wanted. -- Leigh Bardugo
There were patterns in the way people moved, the way they clustered around power. They thought they were drifting, milling aimlessly, but really they were being drawn towards people of status. -- Leigh Bardugo
Haskell whisked the pistol from his pocket and flipped open the barrel. It was empty. "You little--" Then Haskell barked a laugh and plucked the bullets from Kaz's hand, shaking his head. "You've got the devil's own blood in you, boy. Go get my money. -- Leigh Bardugo
Kaz had tapped his crow's head cane on the flagstones of the tomb floor. "Do you know what Van Eck's problem is?"
"No honor?" said Matthias.
"Rotten parenting skills?" said Nina.
"Receding hairline?" offered Jesper. -- Leigh Bardugo
None of us moves on without a backward look. We move on always carrying with us those we have lost. -- Leigh Bardugo
No, Tolya, your gifts lie elewhere," Sturmhond said soothingly. "Mostly in the celebrated fields of killing and maiming. -- Leigh Bardugo
Only two were unmarked. Tolya and Tamar led the charge, eyes wild, blades flashing, roaring my name. -- Leigh Bardugo
So is Tolya, for that matter." Tamar's lips twitched. "Would you like to be the one to tell him he can't come?"
Mal considered this. "Maybe we can disguise him as a really big tree. -- Leigh Bardugo
You didn't really think they were ghosts, did you?"
I blushed and Tolya cleared his throat. Zoya rolled her eyes and strode toward the hill. "I am surrounded by fools. -- Leigh Bardugo
Maybe that brought us together, but it didn't make us who we are. It didn't make you the girl who could get me to laugh when I had nothing. It sure as hell didn't make me the idiot who took that for granted. Whatever there is between us, we forged it. It belongs to us. -- Leigh Bardugo
The world is changing," said Nikolai, the steel edge emerging in his voice. "We change with it, or there will be nothing to remember us but dust. -- Leigh Bardugo
Inej cast a meaningful glance at his cane. "Have a long trip down," she said, then leapt onto the banister, sliding from one flight to the next, slick as butter in a pan. -- Leigh Bardugo
I'm not like you, Mal. I never really fit in the way you did. I never really belonged anywhere."
"You belonged with me. -- Leigh Bardugo
It's not natural for women to fight."
"It's not natural for someone to be as stupid as he is tall, and yet there you stand. -- Leigh Bardugo
Please, my darling Inej, treasure of my heart, won't you do me the honor of acquiring me a new hat? -- Leigh Bardugo
The names they gave were false ones, though the vows they made were true. -- Leigh Bardugo
They are orphans again, with no true home but each other and whatever life they can make together on the other side of the sea. -- Leigh Bardugo
I would come for you and if I couldn't walk I would crawl to you. -- Leigh Bardugo
Nina would never let Kaz abandon her. She'd fight with everything she had to free Inej even if she was still in the grips of Parem. Matthias would stand by her with that great heart full of honor. -- Leigh Bardugo
If he cannot be tried for his failures as a king, let him be tried for his failures as a man. -- Leigh Bardugo
I don't care if you danced naked on the roof of the Little Palace with him. I love you, Alina, even the part of you that loved him. -- Leigh Bardugo
I didn't come looking for an apology, Jesper. You have a weak spot. We all have weak spots."
"The company I keep," she said with a slight smile. -- Leigh Bardugo
Maybe your stay in Hellgate was too short, Matthias. There's always more to lose. -- Leigh Bardugo
I didn't think he was in love with me and I had no idea what I felt for him, but he wanted me, and maybe that was enough. -- Leigh Bardugo
She's worth it. And one day maybe she'll let me chase her into a chapel. -- Leigh Bardugo
I hope you don't expect fairness from me, Alina. It isn't one of my specialties. -- Leigh Bardugo
I need someone who can be invisible, who can become a ghost. Do you think you can do that?"
I'm already a ghost, she thought. I died in the hold of a slaver ship.
"i think so. -- Leigh Bardugo
Ravka is grateful for your service," Sturmhond said as they turned to go. "And so is the crown." He waved once. In the late afternoon light, with the sun behind him, he looked less like a privateer and more like... but that was just silly. -- Leigh Bardugo
She smiled then, her cheeks red, her cheeks scattered with some kind of dust. It was a smile he thought he might die to earn again. -- Leigh Bardugo
On my word as a liar and cutthroat. -- Leigh Bardugo
What makes you think we can do this? There will be other teams out there, trained soldiers and spies, people with years of experience."
"This isn't a job for trained soldiers and spies. It's a job for thugs and thieves. Van Eck knows it, and that's why he brought us in. -- Leigh Bardugo
Remember what we've been through. Remember what we came here for. -- Leigh Bardugo
The easiest way to steal a man's wallet is to tell him you're going to steal his watch. You take his attention and direct it where you want it to go. -- Leigh Bardugo
Nina was about to snap that she didn't appreciate the sarcasm when she saw the expression on his face. He looked like someone had just given him a tuba full of puppies. -- Leigh Bardugo
Brick by brick, I will destroy you. -- Leigh Bardugo
You weeel catch the korpa." "The what?" "The korpa!" I declared in dire tones. "Your private parts weeel shrink to nothink! -- Leigh Bardugo
If it were a trick, I'd promise you safety. I'd offer you happiness. I don't know if that exists in the Barrel, but you'll find none of it with me.
For some reason, those words had comforted her. Better terrible truths than kind lies. -- Leigh Bardugo
Shame holds more value than coin ever can." He -- Leigh Bardugo
Don't argue. Never deign to deny. Meet insults with laughter. -- Leigh Bardugo
My life would be allegiance instead of love, fealty instead of friendship. I would weigh each decision, consider every action, trust no one. It would be life observed from a distance. -- Leigh Bardugo
You have no finesse," a gambler at the Silver Garter once said to him. "No technique."
"Sure I do," Kaz had responded. "I practice the art of 'pull his shirt over his head and punch till you see blood. -- Leigh Bardugo
You are as much there as you are here. The same things that make the mountain make you. It has no lungs, so let it breathe with you. It has no pulse, so give it your heartbeat. That is the essence of the Small Science. -- Leigh Bardugo
Weakness is a guise. Wear it when they need to know you're human, but never when you feel it. -- Leigh Bardugo
Six people, but a thousand ways this insane plan could go wrong. -- Leigh Bardugo
I've been nothing but kind to you. I'm not some sort of monster."
"No, you're the man who sits idly by, congratulating yourself on your decency, while the monster eats his fill. At least a monster has teeth and a spine. -- Leigh Bardugo
Nina said something to Kuwei in Shu. He shrugged and looked away, lip jutting out slightly. Whether it was the recent death of his father or the fact that he'd found himself stuck in a cemetery with a band of thieves, the boy had become increasingly sullen. -- Leigh Bardugo
You're passable at demo. You're excellent at hostage. -- Leigh Bardugo
I shook my head in wonder. "How does he do it?"
"Want to know my secret?" Nikolai asked from behind us. We both jumped. He leaned in, looked from left to right, and whispered loudly. "I have a lot of money."
I rolled my eyes.
"No, really," he protested. "A lot of money. -- Leigh Bardugo
Stop treating your pain like it's something you imagined. If you see the wound is real, the you can heal it. -- Leigh Bardugo
Sure, I'm skinny,' he said as they hurried back through the stables, 'but I stay drier in the rain.'
'Less falls on me. -- Leigh Bardugo
That's where you're wrong," said Kaz. "I don't hold a grudge. I cradle it. I coddle it. I feed it fine cuts of meat and send it to the best schools. I nurture my grudges, Rollins." "I'm -- Leigh Bardugo
Just waiting, hoping that you'd miss me enough to tell them all to go to hell. -- Leigh Bardugo
Everything is a negotiation with you, Brekker. You probably bartered your way out of the womb. -- Leigh Bardugo
Sometimes, the only way to get justice is to take it for yourself. -- Leigh Bardugo
It was because she was listening so closely that she knew the exact moment when Kaz Brekker, Dirtyhands, the bastard of the Barrel and deadliest boy in Ketterdam, fainted. -- Leigh Bardugo
You must find a way to make peace," said Inej. "At least for a while."
"This is not your concern," Matthias growled.
Kaz stepped forward, his expression dangerous. "It is very much our concern. And watch your tone. -- Leigh Bardugo
Crows remember human faces. They remember the people who feed them, who are kind to them. And the people who wrong them too. They don't forget. They tell each other who to look after and who to watch out for. -- Leigh Bardugo
I hope he didn't cross Kaz Brekker," Nina said with a shudder.
"Of course not," said Nina as she shook out the cuffs of her kefta and prepared to exit the dining room." Only a fool would. -- Leigh Bardugo
Go on, Van Eck, threaten me. Tell me all the little things I am. You lay a finger on me and Kaz Brekker will cut the baby from your pretty wife's stomach and hang its body from a balcony at the Exchange. -- Leigh Bardugo
A liar, a thief, and utterly without conscience. But he'll keep to any deal you strike with him. -- Leigh Bardugo
Has anyone noticed this whole city is looking for us, mad at us, or wants to kill us?"
"So?" said Kaz.
"Well, usually it's just half the city. -- Leigh Bardugo
You can't spend his money if you're dead."
"I'll acquire expensive habits in the afterlife. -- Leigh Bardugo
He didn't mean to say it. He meant to let her go. "I can help you. -- Leigh Bardugo
Pekka Rollins couldn't count the threats he'd heard, the men he'd killed, or the men he'd seen die, but the look in Brekker's eye still sent a chill slithering up his spine. Some wrathful thing in this boy was beginning to get loose, and Rollin's didn't want to be around when it slipped its leash. -- Leigh Bardugo
That, Kuwei, is the sound that death makes when she comes calling. -- Leigh Bardugo
And what god do you serve, then?"
"Whichever will grant me good fortune."
"I don't think gods work that way."
"I don't think I care. -- Leigh Bardugo
You came back for me."
"I protect my investments." Investments.
"I'm glad I'm bleeding all over your shirt. -- Leigh Bardugo
She'd often wished to chip away a bit of his arrogance, but she couldn't bear the idea of seeing Kaz stripped of his pride. -- Leigh Bardugo
Greed is your god, Kaz."
He almost laughed at that. "No, Inej. Greed bows to me. It is my servant and my lever. -- Leigh Bardugo
No one got the better of Kaz. He was the toughest, scariest thing walking the alleys of the Barrel. -- Leigh Bardugo
I will have you without armor, Kaz Brekker. Or I will not have you at all. -- Leigh Bardugo
We'll be Kings and Queens, Inej. Kings and Queens. -- Leigh Bardugo
I trade in information, Geels, the things men do when they think no one is looking. Shame holds more value than coin ever can. -- Leigh Bardugo
Has she at least done it before?" said Kaz. "For this purpose?" asked Sturmhond. "I've seen her do it twice. It worked splendidly. Once". -- Leigh Bardugo
Compromise," Kaz said. " 'I'm sorry' does the trick and uses fewer bullets. -- Leigh Bardugo
Before you finish that sentence, I want you to think about what a promise from me costs and what you're willing to pay for it. -- Leigh Bardugo
He knew exactly what he intended to leave behind when he was gone.
Damage. -- Leigh Bardugo
Feeling anything for Kaz Brekker was the worst follishness. -- Leigh Bardugo
Though Kaz's tone was easy, Matthias heard the dark anticipation in his words. He had often wondered how people survived this city, but it was possible Ketterdam would not survive Kaz Brekker. -- Leigh Bardugo
Kaz had always kept himself at a remove from everyone. They'd wanted camaraderie, friendship, but he had never agreed to play their game, only his own. -- Leigh Bardugo
I'm pragmatic. If I were cruel, I'd give him an eulogy instead of a conversation. -- Leigh Bardugo
You can only sharpen a blade so far", Kaz said as he joined them at the front of the church. "In the end, it comes down to the quality of the metal. -- Leigh Bardugo
There are no good men in Ketterdam, Kaz said. And then he'd simply let go. -- Leigh Bardugo
Find her tells. Everyone has them. -- Leigh Bardugo
You're the fool," Jesper snarled. "He's smarter than most of us put together, and he deserves a better father than you. -- Leigh Bardugo
Vasily laughed. "I can't decide if you're a fearmonger or a coward."
"And I can't decide if you're an idiot or an idiot. -- Leigh Bardugo
They said nothing, caught in an eddy of silence, not touching, her knees on either side of him. Inej's eyes were wide and dark, lost planets, black moons. -- Leigh Bardugo
They're all crazy, Oncat. Invisible armies, monster princes. Let's go set fire to something. -- Leigh Bardugo
His heart was pounding, and adrenaline crackled through his body in delicious spikes. -- Leigh Bardugo
More flexible!" David said in near ecstasy.
"What can I say?" asked Genya drily. "He's a passionate man. -- Leigh Bardugo
Despise your heart. I wanted to. I didn't want to grieve anymore, to feel loss or guilt, or worry. I wanted to be hard, calculating. I wanted to be fearless. -- Leigh Bardugo
Inej was always trying to wring little bits of decency from him. -- Leigh Bardugo
Inej's mother had told her that gifted wire walkers were descended from the People of the Air, that they'd once had wings, and that in the right light, those wings could still be glimpsed on the humans to whom they showed favor. -- Leigh Bardugo
We're not going in through the embassy,' said Kaz. 'Always hit where the mark isn't looking.'
'Who's Mark?' asked Wylan.
Jesper burst out laughing. 'Oh, Saints, you are something. The mark, the pigeon, the cosy, the fool you're looking to fleece. -- Leigh Bardugo
"I'm not used to people trying to kill me."
"Really? I hardly notice anymore. -- Leigh Bardugo
She could smell the storm on him, like the lightning had followed him home, like he was made of the same dense rain clouds. -- Leigh Bardugo
The deal is the deal. -- Leigh Bardugo
And yet I didn't think pain like that ever faded entirely. Grief had its own life, took its own sustenance. -- Leigh Bardugo
If you write, you're a writer. -- Leigh Bardugo
I can hear the change in Kaz's breathing when he looks at you."
"You... you can?"
"It catches every time, like he's never seen you before. -- Leigh Bardugo
Memories were a luxury for other children, not the Keramzin orphans. -- Leigh Bardugo
If I see a single scratch or nick on those, I'll spell forgive me on your chest in bullet holes. -- Leigh Bardugo
This was what Ravka did. It made orphans. It made misery. No land, no life, just a uniform and a gun. -- Leigh Bardugo
Usually he liked the quiet; in fact, he would have happily sewn most people's lips shut. But when she wanted to, Inej had a way of making you feel her silence. It tugged at your edges. -- Leigh Bardugo
Only you could contemplate imminent death and just say 'all right.'"
He smiled at me and pushed the hair back from my tear-stained face. "How about 'oh no'? -- Leigh Bardugo
I wonder sometimes how much we really understand our own gifts. -- Leigh Bardugo
What do you want then?
The old answers came easily to mind. Money. Vengeance. Jordie's voice in my head silenced forever. But a different reply roared to life inside him, loud, insistent, and unwelcome. You, Inej. You. -- Leigh Bardugo
We put on our best clothes and die like heroes. -- Leigh Bardugo
Taught little girl to fight, no?" "Yes," I agreed, wincing at the memory.
"But little girl is not so little anymore," he said taking in the gold of my kefta. "You come back to train with Botkin. I hit big girl same as little girl."
"That's very egalitarian of you. -- Leigh Bardugo
I will have you without armor or I will not have you at all. -- Leigh Bardugo
Nina screamed, a howl that tore from the black space where her heart had beat only moments before. She searched for his pulse, for the light and force that had been Matthias. -- Leigh Bardugo
The person she liked best didn't like her enough to want more of her, and she didn't want to pretend that wasn't awful. -- Leigh Bardugo
The first time I'd entered the Fold, I'd feared the darkness and my own death. Now, darkness was nothing to me, and I knew that soon death would seem like a gift. I'd always known I would have to return to the Unsea, but as I looked back, I realized that some part of me had anticipated it. -- Leigh Bardugo
Only one?" asked Wylan.
"Matthias said four guards for non-operational gates."
"Maybe Yellow Protocol is working in our favor," said Wylan. "They could have been sent to the prison sector or - "
"Or maybe there are twelve big Fjerdans keeping warm inside. -- Leigh Bardugo
And then he kissed me. -- Leigh Bardugo
What about Alys?" asked Wylan.
Again Kaz shrugged. "No one is going to believe that girl had anything to do with a financial scheme. Alys will sue for divorce and probably move back in with her parents. She'll cry for a week, sing for two, and then get over it. Maybe she'll marry a prince. -- Leigh Bardugo
She'd smiled. He'd smiled. She'd wanted to claw his face to shreds. -- Leigh Bardugo
How many times have you told me you're a monster? So be a monster. Be the thing they all fear when they close their eyes at night. -- Leigh Bardugo
Have any of you wondered what I did with all the cash Pekka Rollins gave us?"
"Guns?" asked Jesper.
"Ships?" queried Inej.
"Bombs?" suggested Wylan.
"Political bribes?" offered Nina. They all looked at Matthias. "This is where you tell us how awful we are," she whispered. -- Leigh Bardugo
It had started with a storm, and in a way, that storm had never ended. Nina had blown into his life with the wind and rain and set his world spinning. He'd been off balance ever since. -- Leigh Bardugo
I saw myself then - sour, silly, difficult, lovely in his eyes. I drew him to me, felt him shudder as our bodies came together, skin against skin, felt the heat of his lips, his tongue, hands moving until the need between us drew taut and anxious as a bowstring waiting for release. -- Leigh Bardugo
That's a good fellow,' Sturmhond said to Ivan. 'Now, I'll take the prisoner back to her quarters, and you can run off and do ... whatever it is you do when everyone else is working.'
Ivan scowled. 'I don't think - '
'Clearly. Why start now? -- Leigh Bardugo
Nina, little red bird. Don't go. -- Leigh Bardugo
You wanted to wear the second amplifier. You have it. You want to go to Os Alta? Fine, we'll go. You say you need the firebird. I'll find a way to get it for you. But when all this is over, Alina, I wonder if you'll still want me. -- Leigh Bardugo
If any of you survive, make sure I have an open casket," Jesper said as he hefted two slender coils of rope over his shoulder and signalled for Wylan to follow him across the roof. "The world deserves a few more moments with this face. -- Leigh Bardugo
And I'm sorry to inform you, but you're not proper either. -- Leigh Bardugo
Because I am a doll, and a servant. Because I am a pretty thing and a soldier all the same. -- Leigh Bardugo
You showed mercy, Kaz. You were the better man."
There she went again, seeking decency when there was none to be had. "Inej, I could only kill Pekka's son once." He pushed the door open with his cane. "He can imagine his death a thousand times. -- Leigh Bardugo
You don't look like a monster."
"I'll tell you a secret, Hanna. The really bad monsters never look like monsters. -- Leigh Bardugo
For my country," she said. "For my people. For every child you put to the pyre. Reap what you've sown, Jarl Brum. -- Leigh Bardugo
I don't like this."
"To be fair, Matthias, you don't like much. -- Leigh Bardugo
They were twin souls, soldiers destined to fight for different sides, to find each other and lose each other too quickly. She would not keep him here. Not like this. -- Leigh Bardugo
Farvell," she said in Fjerdan. "May Djel watch over you until I can once more. -- Leigh Bardugo
Alys Van Eck waddled along beside him. Her blindfold had been removed, and through his long glass, Matthias could see her lips moving. Sweet Djel, is she still singing? Judging from the sour expression on Kaz's face, it was a distinct possibility. -- Leigh Bardugo
The stars looked like they were close together, when really they were millions of miles apart. -- Leigh Bardugo
Capture Nikolai. Put him in a cage. See if we could pull him from the shadow's grasp. The too-clever fox, finally caught. I blinked and looked away. I didn't want to cry again. -- Leigh Bardugo
His knuckles brushed against her skin and lightning cracked through him, left him paralyzed, rooted to the earth. His heart should not be making that sound. -- Leigh Bardugo
I say we go down fighting." ... "We do the best we can. -- Leigh Bardugo
I'd missed him. The way he talked. The way he attacked a problem. The way he brought hope with him wherever he went. For the first time in months, I felt the knot in my chest ease. -- Leigh Bardugo
The less you say, the more weight your words will carry. -- Leigh Bardugo
The volcra, the nichevo'ya, they were my monsters, all of them. And he was my monster, too. -- Leigh Bardugo
Na razrusha'ya. E'ya razrushost." (Translation): I am not ruined. I am ruination. -- Leigh Bardugo
Baghra," Nikolai said, "how are you this evening?"
"Still old and blind," she snarled.
"And charming," Nikolai drawled. "Never forget charming."
"What do you want, pest? -- Leigh Bardugo
Kaz flexed his fingers in his gloves. How did you survive the Barrel? When they took everything from you, you found a way to make something from nothing. -- Leigh Bardugo
We didn't draw anything," she said as she stepped through the door. "We volunteered." * -- Leigh Bardugo
I am not sorry, she realized. She had chosen to live freely as a killer rather than die quietly as a slave, and she could not regret that. -- Leigh Bardugo
Just trust me, Nina." "I wouldn't trust you to tie my shoes without stealing the laces, Kaz. -- Leigh Bardugo
See you in Djerholm harbour," Specht called. "No mourners." "No funerals," the others replied. Strange people. -- Leigh Bardugo
No Funerals. -- Leigh Bardugo
I can't make big changes, just small ones. Even out your skin. Do something with that mousy hair of yours. I've perfected myself, but I've had my whole life to do it. -- Leigh Bardugo
You come back to train with Botkin. I hit big girl same as little girl."
"That's very egalitarian of you." I said, and hurried Tamar out of the stables before Botkin decided to show me just how fair-minded he could be. -- Leigh Bardugo
Don't wish for bricks when you can build from stone. -- Leigh Bardugo
It's none of my business, and I have no idea if he'd be good for you. Probably bring you ten kinds of headache. But I think you'd be good for him. -- Leigh Bardugo
Hope was tricky like water. Somehow it always found a way in. -- Leigh Bardugo
Vasily chortled. "What a diplomat you've become! You've a most refreshing way about you. Given time, I have no doubt that, despite your humble antecedents, you will learn to conduct yourself with the restraint and elegance of a noblewoman."
"You mean I'll learn to shut up? -- Leigh Bardugo
I've risked my life for you. I've walked half the length of Ravka for you, and I'd do it again and again and again just to be with you, just to starve with you and freeze with you and hear you complain about hard cheese every day. So don't tell me we don't belong together. -- Leigh Bardugo
Not bad looking? He's damnably handsome. Brave in battle, smart as a whip. An excellent dancer, oh, and an even better shot. -- Leigh Bardugo
We don't look anything alike." "You're both tall," Inej offered. "And neither of us have gills," said Nina. "That doesn't mean we look related. -- Leigh Bardugo
At that moment, the creature's back breached the waves, its body cutting through the water in a sinuous arch, rainbows sparking off the iridescent scales on its back. Rusalye. -- Leigh Bardugo
We are all someone's monster. -- Leigh Bardugo
The too-clever fox, finally caught. -- Leigh Bardugo
Once it builds up in the victim's system, a threshold is reached, the organs begin to fail, and the degeneration is irreversible. It's not a killer. It's a thief. It steals years. And he will never get them back.
I felt a little chill at the satisfaction in her voice. -- Leigh Bardugo
She'd been so docile that Nina had become concerned. "Maybe she's not getting enough blood to her
brain?" she'd murmured to Matthias. -- Leigh Bardugo
I took my time walking down to the lake, hoping that somehow the ache in my heart would ease. My joy at the success on the roof had drained away, leaving me hollow, like a well someone could shout down and hear nothing back but echoes. -- Leigh Bardugo
I had no idea what the future held or what waited for me at the end of this grueling journey and yet, somehow, I wasn't miserable. I'd been lonely my whole life, but I'd never been truly alone before, and it wasn't nearly as scary as I'd imagined. -- Leigh Bardugo
Matthias was not fooled. Kaz always spoke logic, but that didn't mean he always told truth. -- Leigh Bardugo
You will always be one of us. -- Leigh Bardugo
Close your eyes!"
"You can't kiss me from down there, Wylan."
"Just do it! -- Leigh Bardugo
Men mock the gods until they need them, Kaz. -- Leigh Bardugo
But I pushed down my confused tears and did as she asked, still hoping that whatever I'd broken might be repaired. -- Leigh Bardugo
Sugar," said Kaz.
Jesper nudged the sugar bowl down the table to him.
Kaz rolled his eyes. "Not for my coffee, you podge. -- Leigh Bardugo
Ivan gabbled something in Shu that I didn't understand. The giant just laughed.
"You speak Shu like a tourist," he said. -- Leigh Bardugo
He'd expected more complaints, but even Wylan had simply put his head down and walked. They're all survivors, Matthias understood. They adapt. -- Leigh Bardugo
Kaz had been impressed with the sketches. "You think like a lockpick," he'd told Wylan. "I do not." "I mean you can see space along three axes." "I'm not a criminal," Wylan protested. Kaz had cast him an almost pitying look. "No, you're a flautist who fell in with bad company. -- Leigh Bardugo
We don't know what may happen next. -- Leigh Bardugo
We're giving them hope. That's better than nothing.'
'Spoken like a man who's never had nothing,' I said, and wheeled my horse away. -- Leigh Bardugo
Jesper gave him a little shake. "Pull it together, kid." "Not a kid," Wylan mumbled, batting Jesper's hands away. "Fine, you're an elder statesman. Do you know how to shoot?" Wylan nodded slowly. "Skeet. -- Leigh Bardugo
From somewhere in the distance, we heard a rolling crack of thunder.
"He's coming," moaned one of the Inferni. "Oh, Saints, he's coming."
"He'll kill us all," whispered Sergei.
"If we're lucky," replied Zoya. -- Leigh Bardugo
Well, Brekker, it's obvious you only deal in half-truths and outright lies, so you're clearly the man for the job. -- Leigh Bardugo
Be brutal. Be cruel. More lives will be saved in the long run. -- Leigh Bardugo
There is no one I want more; there is nothing I want more than to be overwhelmed by you. -- Leigh Bardugo
You know I can do it, Kaz, and you know I'm not going to refuse. So why ask?"
Because I've been looking for an excuse to talk to you for two days.
"I want to make sure you know what you'll be dealing with and that you're studying the plans. -- Leigh Bardugo
It was a calculated risk."
"It was cross-your-fingers-and-hope-for-the-best. Believe me, I know the difference. -- Leigh Bardugo
If we don't survive this night, I will die unafraid, Kaz. Can you say the same? -- Leigh Bardugo
Toss his over," Zoya said. "Break his heart cruelly. I will gladly give our poor prince comfort, and I would make a magnificent queen."
I laughed. "You actually might, Zoya. If you could stop being horrible for a minute."
"With that kind of incentive, I can manage a minute. Possibly two. -- Leigh Bardugo
My mother was an oyster," he said with a wink. "And I'm the pearl. -- Leigh Bardugo
I seem to be immune," I replied. "And luckily, I know what a real kiss should feel like."
I left him standing in the middle of the square. I could get used to making Mal blush. -- Leigh Bardugo
Barrel boys don't have parents. We're born in the harbour and crawl out of the canals. -- Leigh Bardugo
I think we often hold heroines to an absurd standard. Be brave! Be wise! Always know what's in your heart and speak the truth of it! No and no and no. We fight to be brave. We learn to be wise. We struggle to know ourselves and voice what we want. -- Leigh Bardugo
He tapped the sun over his heart. I came here for you. You're my flag. You're my nation. -- Leigh Bardugo
It's still the same heart, Mal. It's still yours. -- Leigh Bardugo
It's always just you and me. -- Leigh Bardugo
Zoya yelped. "That little brat just kicked me."
"Smart kid," said Mal.
I lifted a brow. "Smarter than some."
He had the good grace to blush. -- Leigh Bardugo
You were meant to be my balance. What I felt for Mal was messy and stubborn and might leave me heartbroken in the end, but it was also human. -- Leigh Bardugo
My mother is Ketterdam. She birthed me in the harbor. And my father is profit. I honor him daily. -- Leigh Bardugo
I miss knowing what happens next. -- Leigh Bardugo
We're alive," he said at last.
"It seems you prayed to the right god."
"Or traveled with the right people. -- Leigh Bardugo
She was tall and built like the figurehead of a ship carved by a generous hand. -- Leigh Bardugo
Matthias handed over the bag. "What are you looking for?"
"A sedative," said the medik.
"Is that safe for a pregnant woman?"
"For me. -- Leigh Bardugo
Laziness wasn't as reliable as greed, but it still made a fine lever. -- Leigh Bardugo
You were an odd little girl."
"You have no idea. What did you and Toyla play with?"
"The skulls of our enemies. -- Leigh Bardugo
Why won't you leave me alone?
Then I'd be alone too. -- Leigh Bardugo
Matthias and Wylan seized the rope to pull him up. Jesper wasn't sure how much Wylan was actually helping, but he was certainly working hard. -- Leigh Bardugo
Her father would have said the shadows were about their own business tonight. Something bad was going to happen here. -- Leigh Bardugo
If only you could talk to girls in equations."
There was a long silence, and then, eyes trained on the notch they'd created in the link, Wylan said, "Just girls? -- Leigh Bardugo
You keep storing up all that anger and grief. Eventually it spills over. Or you drown in it. -- Leigh Bardugo
I didn't belong in this beautiful world, and if I didn't find a away to use my power, I never would. -- Leigh Bardugo
And the look they exchanged could have melted miles of northern ice. -- Leigh Bardugo
I'm mad at you, too." "Me? Why?" "I don't know yet. I just am." Inej -- Leigh Bardugo
When people say impossible, they usually mean improbable. -- Leigh Bardugo
Make me your villain. -- Leigh Bardugo
But what about the rest of us? What about the nobodies and the nothings, the invisible girls? We learn to hold our heads as if we wear crowns. We learn to wring magic from the ordinary. That was how you survived when you weren't chosen, -- Leigh Bardugo
Her silks were feathers, and she was free. -- Leigh Bardugo
It will never fade, Alina. It will only grow worse, no matter how many scarves you hide behind or what lies you tell, no matter how far or fast you run. -- Leigh Bardugo
Three figures emerged in elegant fur hats and heavy wool kefta: one in crimson, one in darkest blue, and one in vibrant purple. "Grisha!" the girl whispered. "Quick!" said the boy. In -- Leigh Bardugo
That's the laugh," he murmured, but she was already setting off down the quay, her feet barely touching the ground. -- Leigh Bardugo
I'd prefer a pair of sable-lined swimming trunks. But we can't always get what we want. -- Leigh Bardugo
A moment later the boy whispered, "I don't think you're ugly."
"Shhhh!" the girl hissed. But hidden by the deep shadows of the cupboard, she smiled -- Leigh Bardugo
We do the best we can do. -- Leigh Bardugo
He dipped his hand in, then yelped and drew back. "They bite."
"Serves you right," I said. "'Oh, look, a dark lake full of something shiny. Let me put my hand in it. -- Leigh Bardugo
You can't be serious," I said.
"Not on a regular basis, no. -- Leigh Bardugo
What doesn't kill me better run. - Kaz -- Leigh Bardugo
Do not be afraid. Fear is how they control you. There's so much in the world you don't have to be afraid of, if you would only open your eyes. -- Leigh Bardugo
The tears that had been threatening to overflow finally did, coursing down my cheeks. I wanted to run after him, to take back what I'd said, to beg him to stay, but I'd spent my life running after Mal. Instead, I stood in silence and let him go. -- Leigh Bardugo
You heard Prince Perfect," Mal said, and joined us at the table. Nikolai grinned. "I've had a lot of nicknames, but that one is easily the most accurate. -- Leigh Bardugo
You move forward, and when you falter, you get up. And when you can't, you let us carry you. You let me carry you. -- Leigh Bardugo
I might not be a threat, but I could become one. -- Leigh Bardugo
No, Alina. You came here for Ravka. For the firebird. To lead the Second Army." He tapped the sun over his heart. "I came here for you. You're my flag. You're my nation. But that doesn't seem to matter anymore. -- Leigh Bardugo
Oh, and the easiest way to make someone furious is to tell her to calm down. -- Leigh Bardugo
You're our chemist, Wylan," said Nina hopefully. "What do you think?"
Wylan shrugged. "Maybe. Not all poisons have an antidote."
Jesper snorted. "That's why we call him Wylan Van Sunshine. -- Leigh Bardugo
They crushed the ship between them with a resonant boom, sending debris flying. Jesper screamed in rage and raised his guns. -- Leigh Bardugo
Scheming face," Inej murmured.
Jesper nodded. "Definitely. -- Leigh Bardugo
Nina might not be able to put you back, you know. Not without another dose of parem. You could be stuck like this."
"Why does it matter?"
"I don't know!" Jesper said angrily. "Maybe I liked your stupid face. -- Leigh Bardugo
Jesper, you're tall, brown, and conspicuous-"
"All synonyms for delightful. -- Leigh Bardugo
I'm afraid for you," he'd said. "The world can be cruel to your kind." But Jesper had always wondered if maybe his father had been a little afraid of him, too. -- Leigh Bardugo
Jesper Llewellyn Fahey, that is enough!" Colm roared. (...)
Inej cocked her head to one side. "Jesper Llewellyn Fahey?"
"Shut up," said Jesper. "It's a family name."
Inej made a solemn bow. "Whatever you say, Llewellyn. -- Leigh Bardugo
Jesper always felt better when people were shooting at him. It wasn't that he liked the idea of dying (in fact, that potential outcome was a definite drawback), but if he was worrying about staying alive, he couldn't be thinking about anything else. -- Leigh Bardugo
Wylan looked as if he was ready to wet himself. Helvar appeared grim as always. Jesper just grinned and whispered, Well, we've managed to get ourselves locked into the most secure prison in the world. We're either geniuses or the dumbest sons of bitches to ever breathe air. -- Leigh Bardugo
Nina giggled. "You are in so much trouble."
Jesper scowled. "Matthias, Nina let Cornelis Smeet grope her bottom."
Nina stopped laughing. "I am going to turn your teeth inside out."
"That is physically impossible."
"I just raised the dead. Do you really want to argue with me? -- Leigh Bardugo
Jesper couldn't keep the disdain from his voice. "Only Nina and Matthias speak Fjerdan."
"I speak Fjerdan," Wylan protested.
"Schoolroom Fjerdan, right? I bet you speak Fjerdan about as well as I speak moose."
"Moose is probably your native tongue," mumbled Wylan. -- Leigh Bardugo
Kaz leaned back. "What's the easiest way to steal a man's wallet?"
"Knife to the throat?" asked Inej.
"Gun to the back?" said Jesper.
"Poison in his cup?" suggested Nina.
"You're all horrible," said Matthias. -- Leigh Bardugo
Don't start doing that."
"Agreeing with me," said Jesper. "Sure path to destruction. -- Leigh Bardugo
You're my son, Jesper. I can't protect you. Maybe I shouldn't have tried. But I will be there even when you falter. Every time. -- Leigh Bardugo
Wylan blushed deeper, and Jesper shook his head. "Play piano, too?" "Flute," said Wylan defensively. "Perfect. -- Leigh Bardugo
Wylan looked back at the water. He'd started to think of Jesper as fearless, but maybe being brave didn't mean being unafraid. -- Leigh Bardugo
He was always in motion, like a lanky piece of clockwork that ran on invisible energy. Except clocks were simple. Wylan could only guess at Jesper's workings. -- Leigh Bardugo
Matthias suspected that Brekker would drag the girl back from hell himself if he had to. Jesper -- Leigh Bardugo
That's the problem with Ketterdam, Jesper thought as they stumbled uncertainly through the dark. Trusting the wrong person can get you killed. -- Leigh Bardugo
What could he do with a pile of scratch that big? Jesper could just imagine his father saying, Land yourself in a pile of shit twice as big. Saints, he missed him. -- Leigh Bardugo
Her heart was a river that carried her to the sea. -- Leigh Bardugo
Thanks for the rescue."
"Everyone needs a hobby."
"I thought yours was preening."
"Two hobbies. -- Leigh Bardugo
Suffering is like anything else. Live with it long enough, you learn to like the taste. -- Leigh Bardugo
Mal," I whispered into the night.
"Thanks for finding me."
I wasn't sure if I was dreaming, but somewhere in the dark, I thought I heard him whisper, "Always. -- Leigh Bardugo
Perfect night for tearing a hole in the universe, no? -- Leigh Bardugo
Dear Mal, I haven't heard from you, so I assume you've met and married a volcra and that you're living comfortably on the Shadow Fold, where you have neither light nor paper to write. Or, possibly, your new bride ate both your hands. -- Leigh Bardugo
I may not have been completely honest about that."
"You? Less than truthful? I'm shocked, Nikolai. Shocked and horrified. -- Leigh Bardugo
On the day the Grisha Examiners came, the boy and the girl were perched in the window seat of a dusty upstairs bedroom, hoping to catch a glimpse of the mail coach. Instead, they saw a sleigh, a troika pulled by three black horses, pass through the white stone gates onto the estate. -- Leigh Bardugo
I have waited hundreds of years for this moment, for your power, for this chance. I have earned it with loss and with struggle. I will have it, Alina. Whatever the cost."
"There will be nothing left," I whispered. -- Leigh Bardugo
Fear is a phoenix. You can watch it burn a thousand times and still it will return. -- Leigh Bardugo
Van Eck raised a brow. How old are you, girl? Sixteen? Seventeen? Nations rise and fall. Markets are made and unmade. When power shifts, someone always suffers. -- Leigh Bardugo
When someone does wrong, when we make mistakes, we don't say we're sorry. We promise to make amends. -- Leigh Bardugo
You don't ask for forgiveness, Kaz. You earn it. -- Leigh Bardugo
I love a little righteous comeuppance. -- Leigh Bardugo
You'll still make a great king."
"Of course I will," he scoffed. "I'm melancholy, not daft. -- Leigh Bardugo
They were eye to eye now. He took a step closer and then just stood there, unable to move. He could not do this. The distance between them felt like nothing. It felt like miles. -- Leigh Bardugo
I am become a blade. -- Leigh Bardugo
I can phrase it as a question if it will make your feathers lie flat. -- Leigh Bardugo
To hell with revenge, to hell with his schemes. If Rollins had done something to Inej, Kaz would paint East Stave with his entrails. -- Leigh Bardugo
Joost had two problems: the moon and his mustache. -- Leigh Bardugo
The bottom fell out of my stomach. It was like putting a foot wrong on a frozen creek, the crack of ice, and sudden drop, the knowledge that there was nothing beneath but dark water. -- Leigh Bardugo
He turned to me then, his expression serious, the firelight playing over the perfect planes of his features. I've spent my life searching for a way to make things right. You're the first glimmer of hope I've had in a long time. -- Leigh Bardugo
Sunlight slanted through the windows, turning his eyes the color of strong tea. -- Leigh Bardugo
You know the problem with heroes and saints, Nikolai?" I asked as I closed the book's cover and headed for the door. "They always end up dead. -- Leigh Bardugo
Kaz tossed the ledger back in the safe. "You're not weak because you can't read. You're weak because you're afraid of people seeing your weakness. You're letting shame decide who you are..." (p283) -- Leigh Bardugo
I would burn a thousand villages, sacrifice a thousand lives to keep you safe. -- Leigh Bardugo
There is no safe place. There is no haven. Not for us. -- Leigh Bardugo
Nina just liked to flirt with everything. He'd once seen her make eyes at a pair of shoes she fancied in a shop window. -- Leigh Bardugo
It's just another weapon. Its nature depends on who wields it. He would have to keep reminding himself. The thoughts of hatred were so old they had become instincts. This was not something he could cure overnight. Like Nina with parem, it might well be a lifelong fight. -- Leigh Bardugo
This was one of the things he'd liked best about Nina- she savored everything, whether it was toffee or cold water from a stream or dried reindeer meat. -- Leigh Bardugo
The sun was out for once, and Inej had turned her face to it. Her eyes were shut, her oil-black lashes fanned over her cheeks. The harbor wind had lifted her dark hair, and for a moment Kaz was a boy again, sure that there was magic in this world. -- Leigh Bardugo