There was no sound; it was the shadow cutting across Dahlia's face that stirred her from the tangle of her thoughts and made her lift her head.
He could have been a figure in the stained-glass window before her, a shadowed monk in tattered robes blocking out the faint gleam of moonlight that crept in through the glass.
But he was not, and it was only the fact that the altar stood in defense between them that gave Dahlia the brief moment of clarity needed to clap her hands over her mouth and muffle her scream. Her legs, stiff from kneeling on the cold marble floor, betrayed her as she tried to scramble away, and she fell back in a heap. A bolt of pure terror shot through her chest, loosed by the sight of that face, those golden eyes the only spark of color in this room whose pearl-inlaid walls shone far too white. Instinct took over and she huddled there on the floor, legs drawn up to her chest, arms wrapped around her sides in a meager attempt at protection. Mus