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Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo Read Online (FREE)

“Van Eck’s gone rogue. If the Merchant Council knew—”

“And who’s going to tell them? A canal rat from the worst slum in the Barrel? Don’t kid yourself, Brekker. Cut your losses and live to fight another day.”

“I fight every day. You’re telling me you’d just walk away?”

“Look, you want to shoot yourself in the foot—the good foot—I’m happy to watch you do it. But I’m not going to ally with you. Not against a merch. No one will. You’re not courting a little gang war, Brekker. You’ll have the stadwatch, the Kerch army, and its navy arrayed against you. They’ll burn the Slat to the ground with the old man in it, and they’ll take Fifth Harbor back, too.”

“I don’t expect you to fight beside me, Rollins.”

“Then what do you want? It’s yours. Within reason.”

“I need to get a message to the Ravkan capital. Fast.”

Rollins shrugged. “Easy enough.”

“And I need money.”

“Shocking. How much?”

“Two hundred thousand kruge.”

Rollins nearly choked on his laughter. “Anything else, Brekker? The Lantsov Emerald? A dragon who craps rainbows?”

“You have the money to spare, Rollins. And I saved your life.”

“Then you should have negotiated back in that cell. I’m not a bank, Brekker. And even if I were, given your current situation, I’d say you’re a pretty poor credit risk.”

“I don’t want a loan.”

“You want me to give you two hundred thousand kruge? And what do I get for this generous gesture?”

Brekker’s jaw set. “My shares in the Crow Club and Fifth Harbor.”

Rollins sat up straighter. “You’d sell your stake?”

“Yes. And for another hundred thousand I’ll throw in an original DeKappel.”

Rollins leaned back and pressed his fingers together. “It’s not enough, you know. Not to go to war with the Merchant Council.”

“It is for this crew.”

“This crew?” Rollins said with a snort. “I can’t believe you sorry lot were the ones to successfully raid the Ice Court.”

“Believe it.”

“Van Eck is going to put you in the ground.”

“Others have tried. Somehow I keep coming back from the dead.”

“I respect your drive, kid. And I understand. You want your money; you want the Wraith back; you want a bit of Van Eck’s hide—”

“No,” said Brekker, his voice part rasp, part growl. “When I come for Van Eck, I won’t just take what’s mine. I’ll carve his life hollow. I’ll burn his name from the ledger. There will be nothing left.”

Pekka Rollins couldn’t count the threats he’d heard, the men he’d killed, or the men he’d seen die, but the look in Brekker’s eye still sent a chill slithering up his spine. Some wrathful thing in this boy was begging to get loose, and Rollins didn’t want to be around when it slipped its leash.

“Open the safe, Doughty.”

Rollins doled out the cash to Brekker, then had him write out a transfer order for his shares in the Crow Club and the gold mine that was Fifth Harbor. When he held out his hand to shake on the deal, Brekker’s grip was knuckle-crushing.