But Astrid snatched out her wand, locking the door before he could leave. She let the moment sit, taking laboured breaths, controlling herself. She wanted to scream, but she reminded herself that she was actively making a change against that behaviour.
"He is not in charge. I am. He is simply a silent partner; convinced he has some sort of power, just enough to keep him sweet, but not enough to act upon it."
She steadily took steps toward him, looking over him for a moment before halting in the centre of the room.
"You feel at a loss, like the rug has been pulled from beneath you, like my efforts were to brutal for the cause? Perhaps now you will understand. I think what is most troubling about our relationship, my darling Nathan," she began, tilting her head at him. "is the look I saw in your eyes when I got on my knees to apologise. When you did so to me, I felt nothing but remorse for what had come of you; I did not enjoy you in that position, and I wished you nothing but redemption - but was unable to offer as much so easily. But in your eyes? There was a sick glee. Whether it is the mistress or your natural sadism, I am unsure. But looking into your eyes, I became very aware of how little you think of my influence."
"I do not hold the powers of dark magic, or unforgivable curses, or a trained army at my heels. But I am far more cunning than any of your little minions, I am far more experienced in this world, and I am far more persuasive than you are. And perhaps...a part of me wants you to feel the fear you instilled in me that night we tried to conceive Soren, without the use of your magical crux. Do I want any harm to come to you? Certainly not. I would never wish that experience in its entirety on you...but it has certainly changed many of my previous perspectives."
"Now you may leave." She flicked her wand again, unlocking the door, and then turned away to continue with her drink.