When the Stars Threw Down Their Spears: The Goblin Wars, Book Three

Table of Contents

Title Page

Table of Contents








































Read More from the Goblin Wars trilogy

About the Author

Clarion Books

215 Park Avenue South

New York, New York 10003


Copyright © 2013 by Kersten Hamilton


All rights reserved. For information about permission to reproduce selections from this book, write to Permissions, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company, 215 Park Avenue South, New York, New York 10003.


Clarion Books is an imprint of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.




The Library of Congress has cataloged the print edition as follows:

Hamilton, K. R. (Kersten R.)

When the stars threw down their spears / by Kersten Hamilton.

p. cm. — (The goblin wars ; bk. 3)

Summary: Teagan leaves her flesh and bones behind to join Finn in hunting the uncanny creatures that have spilled from Mag Mell into Chicago, realizing that she must destroy the Dark Man and his minions once and for all to save her remaining loved ones.

ISBN 978-0-547-73964-9 (hardback)

[1. Goblins—Fiction. 2. Magic—Fiction. 3. Imaginary creatures—Fiction. 4. People with mental disabilities—Fiction. 5. Irish Americans—Fiction. 6. Zoos—Fiction. 7. Finn MacCool—Fiction. 8. Chicago (Ill.)—Fiction.] I. Title.

PZ7.H1824Whe 2013        [Fic]—dc23



eISBN 978-0-544-03570-6





This book is for you. Listen to your glimories. Follow them home


hadn’t made it into lockdown. Teagan didn’t know the girl Kyle was holding off the floor by her hair. She was screaming and twisting, trying to get away. Kyle tickled her belly with his claws. “I’ve been waiting for you, Tea!”

Finn reached for his knife that wasn’t there; Abby whirled and grabbed a whole bucket of flatware from the salad bar.

“Dumpster Boy!” she shouted, and threw the whole thing at Finn. The flatware spilled out of it as it tumbled. Finn snatched a spoon out of the air, and his hand flicked toward Kyle. The spoon seemed to blossom from the dent at the base of the Highborn’s neck, even as the rest of the flatware rained to the floor.

Kyle let go of his hostage’s hair to grab the spoon with both hands, but before he could pull it out, Angel had the girl, and then Leo was right against the Highborn’s back. It was only when Kyle arched that Teagan realized that Leo had a knife in his hand. Kyle went down so violently that the knife was pulled from Leo’s grip.

The girl he’d been holding ran screaming from the room.

Leo stepped back. “When you get to Hell, tell them Leo Gagliano sent you.”

Teagan felt the tears welling in her eyes as she stared at Kyle’s motionless form.

“Tea,” Finn said as she walked past him. “Don’t cry. Two worlds are better off without Kyle in them.”

“Yeah, right,” Abby said. “That’s like telling her not to be Teagan Wylltson. You’re welcome, by the way.”

“For?” Finn asked.

“Passing the silverware? I told you I was psychic.”


“I said if we ever got attacked in a restaurant we’d be safe, right?”

“This is a cafeteria, Gabby. And you said if Tea was attacked, she’d be safe.”

“So, she’s safe.”

Teagan shut out their bickering as she knelt beside Kyle. He turned his face toward her as the pool of dark blood spread around them. She could feel the life seeping out of him. He didn’t have the strength to move again, but even through his beastmask of a face, Teagan could see the fear. Kyle was afraid of dying. She couldn’t pretend she wasn’t glad his life was over. Glad he wouldn’t hurt anyone else. But the fear in his eyes was unbearable.

Teagan took his hand, careful of the claws, and held it in her own, pressing her palm to his. Kyle’s eyes widened in surprise.

Leo pulled a handkerchief from his pocket, took the spoon from Kyle’s other hand, and wiped it down.

“What are you doing?” Finn asked.

“Prints,” Leo said. “Any security cameras, Angel?”

“I’ll have Jing take care of it,” Abby said.

“Who’s this Jing?” Leo asked.

“I’ll introduce you sometime. Right now you should take Finn and get out of here. The cops will be here any minute.”

Kyle’s eyes clouded, and Teagan felt the last flicker of life drain away.
Like it had drained from her mother
. Aileen Wylltson had never opened her eyes as she lay dying. But her face had been . . . peaceful. Teagan’s lips moved, silently forming her mother’s poem:


Selves—goes itself
; myself
it speaks and spells
Whát I do is me: for that I came.


“You should get away from that thing, Tea,” Leo said. “It’s probably got diseases.”

“Leave her alone, Leonardo,” Abby said. “Tea does what she does.”

Teagan closed her eyes.
Tea does what she does

I may be Highborn. But I am
like my family

What I do is me: for this I came

If I am any creature of yours, Almighty
, she prayed,
help me speak and spell something other than this into creation. Give me the courage to live what I am

“Are you praying for him? That’s rich.”

Teagan looked up. Isabeau had come into the room.

“For myself,” Teagan corrected.

Finn started toward Isabeau.

“Finn,” Teagan said. “Wait. I want her to carry a message. Tell Mab I said no more.”

“No more games?” Isabeau laughed. “Oh, there’s plenty more coming. Have you heard about your little chimp friend yet?”

“I heard.” Teagan pulled Leo’s knife from Kyle’s body. Leo reached for it, but she waved him away.

“What are you doing?” Abby asked.

“What I came for.” Teagan stood up. “Tell Mab I won’t allow her to hurt my family and friends.”

challenging Mab? By yourself?” Isabeau scoffed.

“She’s not by herself, is she, goblin?” Finn said.

“You mess with her, you mess with us,” Abby agreed.

Isabeau pushed her shades up on top of her head, and her oilpuddle eyes looked blankly at Teagan. “You know this means war.”

“Then let there be war,” Teagan said, and threw the knife like she meant it.



as the blade flipped end over end toward Isabeau. Teagan had felt the shift before, when her little brother had changed her future with a song.

Now she felt the ripple of change spread as if she had dropped a stone into a still pond; it hit Finn, Abby, the Gagliano brothers . . . Isabeau. The shock waves rebounded off each of them, coming back from every direction and passing through her, crossing one another.

Suddenly, the coppery scent of Kyle’s blood was so thick in the air she could taste it. She felt the heat leaking from his body beside her, heard the Doppler shift of the sirens outside racing toward them, and sensed the faint electrical field generated by every beating heart in the room.

Leonardo, Michelangelo, and Donatello Gagliano glowed like tiny LEDs behind her; their cousin Abigail was brighter, but Finn Mac Cumhaill hummed like a high-power line. She had felt the blood pounding through his veins before, felt his heart beating, and she felt it again now—even though they were separated by fifteen feet. She felt the adrenaline in him.
This isn’t telepathy. In telepathy, you can read thoughts. I’m reading the electrical impulses in his body
. She felt his muscles move as he lunged toward Isabeau.

“No!” Teagan shouted. Isabeau, the bilocate, had no electric hum. The form standing before them was only her soul, wrapped in cold matter that would explode when the iron blade pierced it, sending her back to her sleeping body in Mag Mell. If Finn was touching her, he would be pulled into Mag Mell with her.

Finn caught Isabeau’s arm as the knife hit—hilt first, thudding against the girl’s fashionable pink jacket and clattering to the cafeteria floor.

“Lame,” Angel said. The other Gagliano brothers shuffled their feet uncomfortably.

“Shut your mouth, Michelangelo.” Abby glared at him. “Tea’s only done this, like, once before. And that time, she was throwing silverware at a box.”

“Gabby’s right.” Finn scooped up the knife with his free hand. “It was a good throw. Your release was a little too quick is all. If you’d held it a fraction of a second longer, you’d have nailed it.”

“So you could tell it wasn’t going to stick?” Abby said.

“Anybody could see that.” Leo pointed at Kyle’s still form. “What’s happening to his face?” Death was reshaping Kyle, flattening the muzzle, retracting the bloody claws.

“What the hell?” Donnie said. “He looks just like a normal guy!”

“Tough luck for you,” Isabeau said. “How
humans feel about murdering teachers?”

“Shit,” Leonardo said. “The cops already have this place surrounded.”

Isabeau turned to Teagan. “‘What I came for.’” She repeated Teagan’s words, clearly puzzled.
“‘What I came for’?”
She shook her head. “What does that even mean? You’re standing in a high school cafeteria in a hoodie that hangs to your knees and pink—what are those, pajamas?—declaring war on the Queen of the Sídhe.”

Teagan fought the urge to shove her hands in her pockets and pull Finn’s hoodie close around her. The confidence she’d felt the second before she’d thrown the knife had drained away along with the adrenaline rush, or had been washed away by the ripples, and the smell of Kyle’s blood was starting to make her sick.

The truth was she had been running for her life since the goblins had first appeared, and Isabeau knew it.

“Pathetic,” the goblin girl said. “The cops are coming, Fear Doirich is going to kill you if they don’t, and none of you have any idea what to do next.”

“We’ll improvise,” Finn said. “One problem at a time.”

Isabeau tried to brush his hand from her arm, but he held on. “Is this the army you plan to lead to war, Teagan? One Irish Traveler and four Italians?”

“Five Italians,” Donnie said. “You remember our brother Rafe? The one you were sucking face with before you framed him for murdering the lunch lady?”

“Shut up, Donnie.” Leo started to pace. “I’m trying to think here.”

“One Italian who can’t think, three who are useless, and a tasty gangster wannabe. And you have the
and his girlfriend, don’t you? I suppose he’ll inspire a poet to write a song about you when you’re dead. Oh, wait. I forgot. He’s going to be dead, too, as soon as Fear Doirich catches up with him. None of you have any idea what you are messing with.”

“Mab wanted me to kill Fear Doirich,” Teagan said. “Why?”

The goblin girl’s smile froze. “You really have been to Mag Mell.”

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