Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo Read Online (FREE)
“No,” said Nina, pointing to a dark spot that seemed to be floating in the sky, unaffected by the howling wind. “We’re under attack.”
Nina crawled on hands and knees, seeking some kind of shelter. She thought she might well have lost her mind. There was someone in the air, hovering in the sky high above her. She was watching someone fly.
Grisha Squallers could control current. She’d even seen them play at tossing each other into the air at the Little Palace, but the level of finesse and power it took to maintain controlled flight was unthinkable—at least it had been, until now. Jurda parem. She hadn’t quite believed Kaz. Maybe she’d even suspected him of outright lying to her about what he’d seen just to get her to do the job. But unless she’d taken a blow to the head she didn’t remember, this was real.
The Squaller turned in the air, stirring the storm into a frenzy, sending ice flying until it stung her cheeks. She could barely see. She fell backward as another slab of rock and ice shot from the ground. They were being corralled, pushed closer together to make a single target.
“I need a distraction!” shouted Jesper from somewhere in the storm.
She heard a tinny plink.
“Get down,” cried Wylan. Nina flattened her body to the snow. A boom sounded overhead, and an explosion lit the sky just to the right of the Squaller. The winds around them dropped as the Squaller was thrown off course and forced to focus on righting himself. It took the briefest second, but it was enough time for Jesper to aim his rifle and fire.
A shot rang out, and the Squaller was hurtling toward the earth. Another slab of ice slid into place. They were being trapped like animals in a pen, ready for the slaughter. Jesper aimed between the slabs at a distant stand of trees, and Nina realized there was another Grisha there, a boy with dark hair. Before Jesper could get off a shot, the Grisha rammed a fist upward, and Jesper was thrown off his feet by a shaft of earth. He rolled as he fell and fired from the ground.
The boy in the distance cried out and dropped to one knee, but his arms were still raised, and the ground still rumbled and rocked beneath them. Jesper fired again and missed. Nina lifted her hands and tried to focus on the Grisha’s heart, but he was well out of her range.
She saw Inej signal to Kaz. Without a word, he positioned himself against the nearest slab and cupped his hands at his knee. The ground buckled and swayed, but he held steady as she launched herself from the cradle of his fingers in a graceful arc. She vanished over the slab without a sound. A moment later, the ground went still.
“Trust the Wraith,” said Jesper.
They stood, dazed, the air strangely hushed after the chaos that had come before.