The return of the missing certainly helped to hasten the end of
the battle.  All seem to be accounted for, with the exception of Mother. 
None of those trapped by Abigail in Inter-Shadow seem to have encountered
her, so I think her disappearance was unrelated.  Perhaps she was even the
Logrus wielder who was working with the Badlanders.  It would not surprise

	The man is intolerable.  Simply intolerable.  And now he is
teaching my niece how to pick locks?  I could strangle him.  After I
strangle Aleksandr.  How could he leave Nadine with Kaedric?  Just because
he wants to be alone with Anton.  I notice that he did not bother to thank
me for rescuing his family.  I wonder if he will tell Anton of his
indiscretion?  It would be wiser if he did not, but then, Aleksandr is
rarely wise.

	Abigail is dead.  It gives me a great deal of satisfaction to
write these words.  Ulysses continues to display more of the violent
streak that first became apparent with Finndo's death, but for once I did
not mind.  The death he chose for Abigail was rather fitting.  As was the
fact that, for all of the havoc she has wreaked upon my life, we only came
face to face with each other at the time of her death.  It was an odd
thing to see myself there, burning on the Pattern.  I have killed many of
my Shadows before, but those were more remote.  I never actually watched
them die, nor were their deaths particularly drawn out.  I wonder, in the
end, if she regretted anything?  I do not think so.  She died as I would
have, without begging, without remorse.  I still find it disturbing how
similar we were, even if Kaedric thinks otherwise.

	Eve has done that which I had hoped she would not.  Maron wrote in
his note that he thought she might attempt to kill Laughter, and his fears
were realized this day.  I sit here now and wonder what ever happened to
that sweet little girl that I used to play shapeshifting games with?  I
should have spent more time with her.  I did try, but Maron's universe ran
so much faster...  Maybe if I had brought her to Amber when she asked me
to...  But now, it is too late.  It seems likely that Archimedes will kill
her for what she has done, unless I can find her soon.  I seem doomed to
lose all of my family.  First Father, then Maron, now Eve.  I suppose it
is only a matter of time before Aleksandr follows suit, or Nadine.  We all
seem to be cursed to pain, unhappiness, and death.  Why does Kaedric not
understand this?

	I am certain that I am going to regret this, once I come to my
senses.  I suppose it was inevitable, from the moment that I chose to tell
him of everything that happened in the dream that Abigail sent me.  I
still do not know what prompted me to do so.  I do not know why I did half
of what I did last night.  Nor, I suspect, does Kaedric.  The lovers,
indeed!  I shall have to see if such a constellation truly does exist in
Foil.  I would be surprised if it did, though.  It was just another step
in the dance that we were doing.  Neither his concerns, nor mine, were
addressed, but in the end, it no longer seemed to matter.  We never even
discussed the topic directly, although we discussed everything but. 
Neither of us wanted to be the one to make that first move.  Ironically,
it seems that I owe Abigail for sending me that dream, despite her
intentions to make me miserable with it.  Would I have been willing to
acknowledge the truth without it?  It is difficult to say.

	And what is the truth, in the end?  That we love each other, but
cannot say it?  That I know this is a mistake, but cannot seem to stop it
from happening?  Why am I doing this?  Maron loved Odemma, and it killed
him in the end.  And look at Aleksandr, all twisted up over Anton's
disappearance.  And Anton, driven to come to *me* for help, so badly did
Aleksandr hurt him.  Father warned me repeatedly of the dangers of such
involvement.  Why am I opening myself up to this sort of pain?  I should
not be doing this.  So why am I?  I do not know.  All I know is that when
he pinned me so suddenly, and told me that this was not a game, I suddenly
realized that it had ceased to be a game for me as well.  These weeks
since Maron's death...  They would have been far more difficult without
Kaedric's presence.  His arms when I broke down crying.  His music when I
woke up screaming.  Had I been left to my own devices, I do not know what
I might have done.  I do not think I was in my right mind that first
night.  I can admit that now.  I might have gladly thrown myself into the
Abyss, and never emerged.  Or lost myself in that ice storm.  Kaedric did
not allow that, and he has not left me alone since.  Waiting for the
promise that I so steadfastly refuse to give.  Why does he do these
things?  And why do I allow it?  I suppose the answer lies in that which
we will not say.  Because to say it would make it real, and who knows what
the consequences might be of that?

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