Magic Steps (The Circle Opens, Book 1)
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Lady Sandrilene fa Toren knows all about unusual magic--she herself spins and weaves it like thread. But when she witnesses a boy dancing a spell, even she is confounded. To her dismay she gets news of a mysterious murderer stalking a clan of local merchants. The killer employs the strangest magic of all: the ability to reduce essence to nothingness. As the murders mount and the killer grows bolder, Sandry's teaching takes on a grave purpose. It becomes clear to everyone that the killings can only be stopped by the combined magic of two people: the young teacher and her even younger student.
and Gury? She couldn’t take a chance on whether it might or might not. She reached the house without seeing any smears between it and Yanjing Street. “So far, so good,” she murmured. The Guard who spoke to the crying nursemaid turned away from the woman in disgust. He looked at Sandry. “Who let you in?” he growled. “I’m Sandrilene fa Toren, the duke’s great-niece,” she said, examining the steps for dark smears. A number of them stretched from the door along one side of the steps to disappear
cleansed of nothingness, with her offer of help. If he’d been right about the blood, Wulfric might actually have the killers by now. That would be a relief. The clang of the Guildhall clock brought her to her surroundings with a start. The hour was done. Pasco’s eyes were open and eager. “Lady—?” he asked. Sandry took up her warding circle. Returning her thread to her purse, she asked, “Walk or ride? It’s not far.” Pasco looked at her guards and the horses waiting in front of the garden.
spend every waking minute with our friend, here,” Yazmín said with a wink to Sandry. “I’ll give him all the personal attention he can stand.” Pasco, switching to stretch his right leg, muttered, “I’m doomed.” Do they really understand how serious this is? Sandry wondered as she set about creating a permanent warding on a room for Pasco and Yazmín to work in. Do they understand that if he touches this net he can’t even see, the power of his dance combined with the net will eat him up? Should I
cord breaking; one bit of unmagic was always determined to join the rest. She never had to stop as she put darkness to be spun against the end of what she’d already worked, as she did with real fiber. As long as that shadowy pool lay in the iron dish, the nothingness streamed through her hand. Once the dish was empty, she took the finished cord from her spindle, wound it onto a spool, and put the spool in its holder. Then she would empty the next bottle into the dish, remove a strand, and begin
floors upstairs, all with their own protections. The roof was a solid mass of untouched magic. She shook her head. “You’re right. The roof is absolutely covered with spells, and none show signs of tampering.” Captain Qais crossed his arms. “Begging your pardon, your ladyship, but you are versed in weaving and needlework. We have mages who know just this kind of thing, magic used by criminals and magic used to keep criminals out. They will be able to explain. And I still think those guards will