Quotes Galore : The Cruel Prince (The Folk of The Air #1) By Holly Black

Quotes Galore : The Cruel Prince (The Folk of The Air #1) By Holly Black

 

Your girl has just finished binge-reading The Folk of The Air series by Holly Black a few days back, and let me just tell you, I have been stuck in a reading slump for a good part of the whole 2019, and by randomly deciding to crack open The Cruel Prince and give it a read, this series quite single-handedly drag me out of my reading slump with a force of 100 horses.


And of course, when something that life changing happens, your girl gotta pay tributes by basically fangirling over it for 10 weeks straight and peruse over all the quotes and then fangirl some more. 

 

the folk of the air quotes

 

I feel like by now, life has honestly just turned into a series of fangirl moments where I just go gaga over a certain books over movies for a while, and not going to lie, I’m all for it. 

 

 

 

 

Lawn mower engines whirred, and children splashed in backyard pools. Dad was in the outbuilding, where he had a forge. Mom was in the kitchen cooking hamburgers. Everything was boring. Everything was fine.

 

We are getting older and things are changing. We are changing. And as eager as I am for it, I am also afraid.

 

 

high king cardan quotes

 

 

“I am going to fall in love.”

 

I am surprised into laughter. “So you’ve just decided? I didn’t think it worked like that. I thought love was supposed to happen when you least expected it, like a sap to the skull.”

 

“Well, I have decided,” she says.

 

 

high king cardan quotes

 

 

Maybe growing up the way we have, bad things feel good to us. Or maybe we are stupid in the exact same way as every other idiot mortal who’s pined away for another bite of goblin fruit. Maybe it doesn’t matter.

 

 

 

 

“I’ve seen many impossible things,” the man said. “I have seen the acorn before the oak. I have seen the spark before the flame. But never have I seen such as this: A dead woman living. A child born from nothing.”

 

 

 

 

Do you know what it is to return from battle to find your wife dead, your only heir with her? To find your life reduced to ash?

 

“I’m so tired,” I say out loud. “So tired.” I sit there for a long time, watching the rising sun gild the sky, listening to the waves crash as the tide goes out, when a creature flies up to alight on the edge of my window. At first it seems like an owl, but it’s got hob eyes. “Tired of what, sweetmeat?” it asks me. I sigh and answer honestly for once. “Of being powerless.”

 

 

 

 

In Faerie, there are no fish sticks, no ketchup, no television.

 

 

 

 

Faeries make up for their inability to lie with a panoply of deceptions and cruelties. Twisted words, pranks, omissions, riddles, scandals, not to mention their revenges upon one another for ancient, half-remembered slights. Storms are less fickle than they are, seas less capricious.

 

 

high king cardan quotes

 

 

I don’t desire to do as well in the tournament as one of the fey. I want to win. I do not yearn to be their equal. In my heart, I yearn to best them.

 

You’re no killer. He has no idea what I am. Maybe I don’t know, either. Maybe I never let myself find out.

 

 

 

 

I’ve got a lot to lose, too. But so what?

 

 

 

 

Only idiots aren’t scared of things that are scary.

 

No one needs to know that my hopes were dashed. No one needs to know I ever had any hope at all.

 

Desire is an odd thing. As soon as it’s sated, it transmutes. If we receive golden thread, we desire the golden needle.

 

 

the folk of air quotes

 

 

Because what’s so great about lying is the not knowing.

 

 

 

 

“See what we can do with a few words? And everything can get so much worse. We can enchant you to run around on all fours, barking like a dog. We can curse you to wither away for want of a song you’ll never hear again or a kind word from my lips. We’re not mortal. We will break you. You’re a fragile little thing; we’d hardly need to try. Give up.”

 

 

“Never,” I say.

 

 

He smiles, smug. “Never? Never is like forever—too big for mortals to comprehend.”

 

 

 

 

Hitting him was the most honest thing I’ve done in a long time. I feel better than great. I feel nothing, a glorious emptiness.

 

For a moment, Cardan just stares at me with stupid, crow-black eyes. Then one corner of his mouth curls. “Oh,” he says. “You’re going to regret doing that.” I don’t think he realizes just how angry I am or how good it feels, for once, to give up on regrets.

 

“He just wants you to give up. It’s a blow to his pride, and it hurts his status, you acting like you’re not afraid of him.” She takes my arm at the wrist, pulling me close. “Tell him that he’s won and you’ve lost. They’re just words. You don’t have to mean them.”

 

I shake my head.

 

“Don’t fight him tomorrow,” she continues.

 

“I’m not withdrawing from the tournament,” I tell her.

 

“Even if it wins you nothing but more woe?” she asks.

 

“Even then,” I say.

 

 

 

 

 

“Get down on your knees,” Cardan says, looking insufferably pleased with himself. His fury has transmuted into gloating. “Beg. Make it pretty. Flowery. Worthy of me.”

 

 

 

 

“Since we started being tutored together, you’ve gone out of your way to make me feel like I’m less than you. And to coddle your ego, I have made myself less. I have made myself small, I have kept my head down. But it wasn’t enough to make you leave Taryn and me alone, so I’m not going to do that anymore. “I am going to keep on defying you. I am going to shame you with my defiance. You remind me that I am a mere mortal and you are a prince of Faerie. Well, let me remind you that means you have much to lose and I have nothing. You may win in the end, you may ensorcell me and hurt me and humiliate me, but I will make sure you lose everything I can take from you on the way down. I promise you this”—I throw his own words back at him—“this is the least of what I can do.”

 

I like to believe that I am doing okay here in Faerie. I like to believe that even though I was drugged and nearly murdered at school yesterday, I am able to put that behind me today. I’m fine. But if I can’t laugh, maybe I’m not so fine after all.

 

 

 

 

And Cardan is even more beautiful than the rest, with black hair as iridescent as a raven’s wing and cheekbones sharp enough to cut out a girl’s heart.

I hate him more than all the others.

I hate him so much that sometimes when I look at him, I can hardly breathe.

 

 

 

 

Taking what we wish, indulging in every terrible thought. There’s safety in being awful.

 

 

the folk of air quotes

 

 

“I want to see you again.”

 

“Why?”

 

He looks at me as though he sees something else entirely. There’s an intensity in his gaze that makes me stand up a little straighter, despite the dirt. “Because you’re like a story that hasn’t happened yet. Because I want to see what you will do. I want to be part of the unfolding of the tale.”

 

 

the cruel prince quote

 

 

Love is a noble cause. How can anything done in the service of a noble cause be wrong?

 

 

 

 

“Do you know what mortal means? It means born to die. It means deserving of death. That’s what you are, what defines you—dying. And yet here you stand, determined to oppose me even as you rot away from the inside out, you corrupt, corrosive mortal creature.”

 

 

 

 

Poison may be a coward’s weapon, but it is an effective one.

 

 

the cruel prince quote

 

 

“Hello,” Locke says, jogging up to me. “Now, where might you have gone off to?”

 

“None of your business,” I tell him, but I soften the words with a smile. I can’t help it.

 

“Ah! A lady of mystery. My very favorite kind.”

 

“I don’t know exactly what he came for, but he kissed my hand. It was nice, like out of a storybook.”

 

“Nice things don’t happen in storybooks,” Taryn says. “Or when they do happen, something bad happens next. Because otherwise the story would be boring, and no one would read it.”

 

 

the cruel prince quote

 

 

I seem to have passed some kind of threshold. Before, I never knew how far I would go. Now I believe I have the answer. I will go as far as there is to go. I will go way too far.

 

 

 

 

“He’s flint, you’re tinder.”

 

 

 

 

“I am tired of caring,” I say. “Why should I?”

 

“Because they could kill you!”

 

“They better,” I say to her. “Because anything less than that isn’t going to work.”

 

It’s not the first awful thing I have endured and pushed into the back of my brain. That’s how I’ve been coping, and if there’s another, better way, I do not know it.

 

“You could have died. The only reason you’re alive is that they didn’t want their game to be over.”

 

“That’s the way they are,” I remind her. “That’s the way things are. Do you want the world to be different than it is? Because this is the world we get, Vivi.”

 

“It’s not the only world,” she says softly.

 

“It’s my world,” I say, my heart hammering in my chest.

 

 

 

 

“What happiness do you have? Rutting and breeding. You’d go mad if you accepted the truth of what you are. You are nothing. You barely exist at all. Your only purpose is to create more of your kind before you die some pointless and agonizing death.”

 

I look him in the eye. “And?”

 

 

 

 

The human species pretends it is so resilient. Mortal lives are one long game of make-believe. If you couldn’t lie to yourselves, you’d cut your own throats to end your misery.

 

 

the cruel prince quote

 

 

When I first came to Faerie, I had trouble sleeping. You’d think I’d have had nightmares, but I don’t remember many. My dreams struggled to rival the horror of my actual life.

 

Prisoners are like damson plums. The longer you keep them, the less valuable they become. Eventually, they spoil.

 

“I don’t suppose you have anything to drink around here?” Cardan asks. “I don’t imagine that whatever happens next is going to be particularly comfortable for me, and I would like to stay drunk in order to face it.”

 

 

 

 

“Tell me, could you love me?” he asks, seemingly out of nowhere. “You really hate me, don’t you?” he asks, his smile growing.

 

 

“Almost as much as you hate me,” I say, thinking of the page with my name scratched on it. Thinking of the way he looked at me when he was drunk in the hedge maze. The way he’s looking at me now. He lets go of my hand.

 

 

“Until we spar again.”

 

 

 

I wait, not sure what to say. It’s disturbing to see him like this, behaving as though he might have emotions.

 

 

the cruel prince quote

 

 

You did a brave thing. Be glad of that. Not everyone can be brave. I’m not always.

 

“If you want my advice,” he says slowly, “love doesn’t grow well, feed on pain.”

 

“I know that you’re stuck here in Faerie because of me. I know that the shittiest things that have happened in your whole life are because of me. You’ve never said it, which is kind of you, but I know. You’ve had to turn yourself into something else, and you’ve done it. Sometimes, when I look at you, I’m not sure if you’d even know how to be human anymore.”

 

But if I could undo the passing of the days, why not unwind them to before I killed Valerian, why not unwind them until my parents are alive, why not unwind them all the way to the beginning?

 

 

 

 

I am hungry, I realize, but I feel too sick to eat. Is this what it is to be brokenhearted?

 

 

 

 

That’s what comes of hungering for something: You forget to check if it’s rotten before you gobble it down.

 

 

the folk of the air quotes

 

 

The odd thing about ambition is this: You can acquire it like a fever, but it is not so easy to shed. Once, I was content to hope for knighthood and the power to force Cardan and his friends to leave me alone. All I wanted was to find some place to fit in here in Faerie. Now I wonder what it would be like to choose the next king.

 

 

 

 

“Everything is spiraling into chaos anyway,” says Cardan.

“Might as well have some fun. Don’t you think, Jude?”

 

 

 

 

I wonder if he guesses how easily promises are coming to my lips. I am spending them like enchanted gold, doomed to turn back into dried leaves in tills all over town.

 

“So I am to sit here and feed you information,” Cardan says, leaning against a hickory tree. “And you’re to go charm royalty? That seems entirely backward.”

 

I fix him with a look. “I can be charming. I charmed you, didn’t I?”

 

He rolls his eyes. “Do not expect others to share my depraved tastes.”

 

 

 

 

“Have I told you how hideous you look tonight?” Cardan asks, leaning back in the elaborately carved chair, the warmth of his words turning the question into something like a compliment.

 

 

“No,” I say, glad to be annoyed back into the present. “Tell me.”

 

 

“I cannot,” he says.

 

 

 

What have I done? For so long, there was no one I trusted less. And now I must contend with him, must match my will to his. His oath does not seem enough of an antidote against his cleverness. What in the world have I done?

 

 

the folk of the air quotes

 

 

“What is a king without a crown? That’s a riddle, but one to which we all know the answer: no king at all.”

 

 

 



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