Melting Stones (Circle Reforged)
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Evvy, a young stone mage in training, is accompanying her mentor, Rosethorn, and another dedicate from Winding Circle while they investigate mysterious happenings on the island of Starns. Her job is to listen and learn, but, being Evvy, she can't just keep quiet and do nothing. With the help of Luvo, the rock being she befriended at her home in Yanjing, Evvy discovers the source of the problem — a long-dormant volcano. Now she and her friends must save the islanders from impending disaster — if only Evvy can use her talents to avert the certain destruction that looms ahead.
their journeys to new shapes. “That was very, very close.” Jayat, like me, had covered his horse’s eyes to keep it calm. He began to unwrap his shirt from his horse’s head. I stared at the long scars on Jayat’s back. He shrugged and said, “Not everybody was sad when the foreign lords killed as many pirates as they could find.” I nodded. I could see that he wouldn’t be too upset at that. “Luvo? Are you all right?” I asked. Luvo wandered over to the ledge to look down into the dead canyon. “The
Evvy, stop making faces. You will need a clear head tonight. You are drinking this, whether you like it or not.” “Not even honey?” I had to ask, though I could see she hadn’t looked at the honeypot. “Honey would just make the experience pleasant. I haven’t forgiven you for racing off without a word.” Rosethorn looked at me and her face softened, a little. “Honey would also give this tea nasty side effects. I’m sorry, but it’s true. Drink it all, Evvy.” I took the mug. “You could try harder to
for me. It would do so only if it wanted to. I’d never find a diamond in all that molten stone. I’d never find any rocks in it. And I’d never find a single crystal. What had I been thinking? I uncurled myself and looked around. Flare and Carnelian, shaped like they wore clothes, sat on either side of me in the earth. They had saved me. They had pulled me out of there. The others said they had a rock that acted like one of us, Flare told me. You’re lucky we thought that sounded weird enough to
crack in the ocean floor, the one Luvo had shown me, what felt like ages ago. I was terrified the fault would shake loose, but the islands wouldn’t let it. They held it in place and kept moving us away, their magic harder than stone. At long last the ceiling of the fault opened up overhead. Far, far above I could hear the cold whisper of the sea in all her malice. I retreated to the side of the fault. Flare, Carnelian—this is it. If you go straight up through there, you can come out into the
Sustree. Flare and Carnelian have all the glory they could want.” Nory is more practical, like me. “How bad is the road?” “Impossible,” I said. “I had mules and it took me two and a half days. We’re stuck here for a while.” As if the land itself agreed, it shuddered, making us stagger. Nory looked at Jayat. “We keep foraging. Evvy can help. She owes us some hard work.” I glared at her, but she was right. It was my fault Meryem had left the group. “I brought two mules,” I told them. “I’ll bet