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Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo Read Online (FREE)

“There was something I needed to take care of.”

“Not good enough.”

“I had a hunch,” Kaz said. “I followed it.”

Nina’s expression was pure disbelief. “A hunch?”

“I made a mistake,” growled Kaz. “All right?”

“No,” said Inej calmly. “You owe us an explanation.”

After a moment, Kaz said, “I went looking for Pekka Rollins.” A look passed between Kaz and Inej that Jesper didn’t understand; there was knowledge in it that he’d been locked out of.

“For Saints’ sake, why?” asked Nina.

“I wanted to know who in the Dregs leaked information to him.”

Jesper waited. “And?”

“I couldn’t find him.”

“What about the blood on your shirt?” Matthias asked.

“Run-in with a guard.”

Jesper didn’t believe it.

Kaz ran a hand over his eyes. “I screwed up. I made a bad call, and I deserve the blame for it. But that doesn’t change our situation.”

“What is our situation?” Nina asked Matthias. “What will they do now?”

“The alarm was Yellow Protocol, a sector disturbance.”

Jesper pushed at his temples. “I don’t remember what that means.”

“My guess is that they think someone’s attempting a prison break. That sector is already sealed off from the rest of the Ice Court, so they’ll authorize a search, probably try to figure out who’s missing from the cells.”

“They’ll find the people we knocked out in the women’s and men’s holding areas,” said Wylan. “We need to get out of here. Forget Bo Yul-Bayur.”

Matthias cut a dismissive hand through the air. “It’s too late. If the guards think there’s a prison break in progress, the checkpoints will be on high alert. They’re not going to let anyone just walk through.”

“We could still try,” said Jesper. “We get Inej’s feet patched up—”

She flexed them, then stood, testing her bare soles on the gravel. “They feel all right. My calluses are gone, though.”

“I’ll give you an address where you can mail your complaints,” Nina said with a wink.

“Okay, the Wraith is ambulatory,” Jesper said, rubbing a sleeve over his damp face. The rain had faded away to a light mist. “We find a cozy room to bash some partygoers on the head and waltz out of this place decked in their finest.”

“Past the embassy gate and two checkpoints?” Matthias said skeptically.

“They don’t know anyone escaped the prison sector. They saw Nina and Kaz so they know people are out of their cells, but the guards at the checkpoints are going to be looking for hoodlums in prison clothes, not sweet-smelling diplos in fancy dress. We have to do this before they get wise to the fact that six people are on the loose in the outer circle.”

“Forget it,” said Nina. “I came here to find Bo Yul-Bayur, and I’m not leaving without him.”

“What’s the point?” said Wylan. “Even if you manage to get to the White Island and find Yul-Bayur, we’ll have no way out. Jesper’s right: We should go now while we still have a chance.”