Jem bent his head. He kept his hair short, and Emma could see the marks of his Silent Brother scars, where runes of silence had once been placed, along his cheek.
“I wanted to talk to you about Kit, actually,” he said. “It’s partly why I came.”
“Really? Because of Kit? He’s all right, as far as I know. Sad, like the rest of us.”
“Kit is more than just a Herondale,” he said. “The Herondales are important to me, but so are the Carstairs and Blackthorns. But Tessa and I knew Kit was in danger from the first time we found out what his heritage was. We rushed to find him, but Johnny Rook had hidden him well.”
“His heritage? Johnny Rook was a con man and Kit says his mother was a showgirl in Vegas.”
“Johnny was a con man, but he also had some Shadowhunter blood in his family—from a long time back, probably hundreds of years. That’s not what’s significant about Kit, though. What’s significant is what he inherited from his mother.” He hesitated. “Kit’s mother’s family has been hunted by faeries for many generations. The Unseelie King has been bent on their destruction, and Kit is the last of their line.”
Emma fell sideways onto the grass. “Not more faeries,” she groaned.
Jem smiled, but his eyes were troubled. “Kit’s mother was murdered by a Rider,” he said. “Fal. I believe you knew him.”
“I believe I killed him,” said Emma. She pushed herself back up to sit beside Jem. “And now I’m glad. He murdered Kit’s mom? That’s awful.”
“I cannot tell you as much as I wish I could,” said Jem. “Not quite yet. But I can tell you there is faerie blood in Kit’s family. Kit’s mother was hunted, and so was her father, on through the generations. Kit is alive because his mother went to great lengths to conceal the fact that he was born. She covered every link between them, and when she died, the King thought the line died with her.”
“And that’s changed?” said Emma.
“We fear it might have,” said Jem. “Tessa and I left Kit with you at the Institute because the warlock sickness was already beginning. We did not know then whether it was something that could spread to humans. We also needed to be in the Spiral Labyrinth and they would not let us bring Kit. We always intended to return for him—we had no idea the Riders would be dispatched to find you. We cannot know whether or not they recognized him. He looks a great deal like his mother.”
“I don’t think so,” said Emma. Kit looked just like Jace, in her opinion.
“So are you going to take Kit with you now?” said Emma. “We don’t want to lose him, but if you have to—”
“The warlock sickness has only worsened. Tessa and I are working day and night in the Spiral Labyrinth to find a cure. And there is something else.” He hesitated. “Tessa is pregnant.”
“Oh! Congratulations!” It was the first good news Emma had gotten in what felt like forever.
Jem smiled the sort of smile that made it look as if a light had turned on inside him. He had been alone so long, Emma knew, imagining that he would never have a family. To have a wife now and a baby on the way—the very ordinary sort of miracles that made up an ordinary life—must be extraordinary for him.
“It is wonderful,” he said. He laid a hand on hers. “I trust you, Emma. I wish only to ask you to look out for Kit, and if you see something suspicious—if you see any signs of a search—please tell me. I will come at once.”
“Should I send a fire-message?” Emma said, her happiness over the baby fading.
“Sometimes it is not possible to send a fire-message. There are easier ways.” He pressed something into her hand. A simple silver ring with a clear stone set into it. “It’s glass,” he said. “Smash the ring and Tessa will know; she has the matching one.”