Valek’s first reaction to Yelena’s touch makes sense.  He’s an assassin and was taught to react first, think later—he stiffens, but then relaxes as she kneads his muscles.  I like their exchange about what Valek would do in a perfect world—be a sculptor.  She’s drunk, and that has relaxed her past all caution, revealing a bit of her past and then…going for his belt buckle. Everything comes to a screeching halt as Valek scoops her up and tucks her into bed.  He’s a gentleman, but Yelena believes he doesn’t like her and she suffers through the pain of rejection.

To get an insight into what Valek is thinking during that little scene, you need to read Shadow Study.  Don’t have a copy yet?  Here’s a link!  ;)  Shadow Study on Amazon

Yelena wakes up later and goes outside for a drink and see’s a giant spider.  Actually it’s Valek returning from sneaking into 8 Generals’ rooms and copying each piece of the code to figure out who the Commander’s successor will be.  This part shows what Valek is capable of and the fact that he likes to figure out puzzles.  Plus he is trusting Yelena with this information.  He’s acting like their “in this together” and this is a hint of what he ultimately wants her to become—a member of the security team.  He values her intelligence and hopes he can trust her.

Also in this chapter, Valek uses a book to help decode the symbols - symbols that are like the ones on Yelena's switchblade. She now has the means to learn what they say.  I love when she thinks this: "Eventually, my ass. Won't Janco be surprised."  What's not too big a surprise is that Brazell is the Commander's new successor - more clues that Brazell is somehow influencing the Commander.

At the end of this chapter, Yelena encounters Brazell and Mogkan—it was bound to happen and I hope it’s a bit of a surprise along with the fact that Mogkan has magic.  And he can use his magic to manipulate her and kill her.  He squeezes off her air and she’s about to go to the sky.  However, there are 8 more chapters in the book, so you know she doesn’t die, but she can’t fight magic and they’re in an isolated part of the castle.  Guess you’ll just have to keep reading.

Question 24 – In Inside Out, what are Logan and Anne-Jade called?

Don't answer this question in the comments!! This is another chance to win! There will be 31 questions for each chapter note published. Collect the answers to ALL the questions (or your best guess) and then enter to win a T-shirt at the end of the month (I'll post the Rafflecopter on the 31st).


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