Gwyn landed with a bone rattling thump next to a manicured rose tree cut into the shape of a heart.
She only had enough time to get her bearings—and slip her gloves back on—before something small, reddish-brown, and spiky zoomed past her, missing her nose by the narrowest of margins.
Though it was foolish, she lay in place for a moment to catch her breath and reorient herself to a world dulled by gloves until it had gone barren of all magic.
All magic, of course, but the—
“What are you doing?” the Ruby Queen shrilled, mincing toward her with the grace of a poppy and the teeth of a venus fly trap. She had one of the servants propped up against her shoulder like a parasol and her crown pushed slightly back from her forehead.