Hellebore wants some time off from the singing, from being pressured to perform. When she takes off in the beginning of December, she is shocked to find her normal portal turning into a one-way trip into a prison.
With her head a bloody mess, she is taken to the doctor who treats her wounds with a confident touch. She gets the briefing on the prison, but one tiny detail is left out. Their prison is a holding area for a Christmas detachment.
All eight men are being held for crimes against their people’s traditions, but she finds that they are not all criminal. With a little bit of effort, she manages to send messages and get in touch with the outside world. Having friends is a very good thing when you are trapped for Christmas.
She slid into her car with her bag in the back seat, and she waved at him as she drove off to the GPS coordinates where her gate was waiting.
Transport gates on routes in the human world were tricky, so they were devised in two parts. One part was set in place by the mage, and the person who was going to use it carried the other.
Since the call to attend her second cousin’s wedding, Hellebore and her band had been called out on fourteen different events, and therefore, she now had a helluva collection of transport fobs. She checked the GPS for the third time and started to accelerate carefully.
Ice under her caused her to slide and the flash of her transport blinded her. She thudded to a halt when her tires grabbed a solid surface and she hit the brakes. Her airbag deployed and everything got bright before it got dark.
Her horn was blaring as a hand touched her shoulder. “Miss? Miss, are you awake?”
She blinked and looked over at the owner of the voice. It rolled over her like water and licked at her skin. “I am awake. Did I hit anyone?”
He chuckled and reached across her to release her seatbelt. “No one out here to hit. I don’t know why you are here or how you got here, but you didn’t hit a thing.”
His features shifted as she stared at him, blurring as she blinked the blood out of her eyes.
“Out you come.” He eased her out of the car.
“My bag is in the back.”
“I see it. I will get it as soon as you are settled. It looks like you split your forehead. How many fingers do you see?”
She blinked and narrowed her eyes as a fan of digits waved in front of her. “Fifteen?”
“Okay, concussion is a possibility. Stay awake. I don’t want to have to explain you to the Doc.” He eased her into the back of a car. She saw grills and the plate that told her she was in some kind of law-enforcement vehicle.
He tucked her bag into his trunk and closed the door to her vehicle, taking the keys with him. He checked on her and gave her a quick wink. “Hold on, it is five minutes away.”
She had never been in a law-enforcement vehicle that was using all of its horsepower before, but her head pounded hard enough that she couldn’t enjoy it.