Beneath them, the surface of the gray sea heaved like the skin of a vast, angry beast. Above them, dark clouds boiled and tumbled. The Kin struggled against the wind, their great wings beating mightily. But it was hopeless. Every moment the gale was sweeping them farther and farther away from the land.
Tossed helplessly in Prin's pouch, Lief watched in bewildered dismay as the slim white shape of the lighthouse grew smaller and smaller behind them.
I have caused this , he thought. It is because I tried to open the light chamber door that we were driven from the lighthouse into the storm.
But the storm…how had it come upon them so quickly?
His heart gave a great thud. Cold certainly settled upon him like a shroud
The Shadow Lord had found them at Bone Point and seized his chance. He had summoned up the storm. He had sent the wind racing from beyond the mountains to sweep them away.
Away from the land. Away from Deltora. So that…
Horror stabbed Lief as he realized that while his face and hands were icy cold, the Belt around his waist was warming. It was growing hot – as fire.
The memory of his father's gentle voice filled his mind.
It is death to take the gems beyond Deltora's borders…
Even for me , Lief thought wildly. Even for Adin's heir. For there is older magic than the dream of Adin. The ancient magic that bonds the gems, and the dragons, and the land…
And the Shadow Lord knows it.
The Belt was scorching his flesh. It was as if every one of the gems was a red-hot coal.
Prin could feel it. She had begun to gasp and whimper. Her wings were faltering. And still the wind swept them on, on.
Leif looked down. Surging gray water. White-capped waves.
The tide is coming in…
He knew what he had to do. He could not afford to think. He had to act now. Now!
He heaved himself up and over the edge of Prin's pouch. And with her cry of shock ringing in his ears, he plunged down, down, into the sea.