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Lights, snow and mistletoe

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In the cathedral square, neither dragon nor man stirred as Tharkay pushed open the door to a likely-looking house. It was decorated for mid-winter with sweet-smelling evergreen boughs. Christmas candles stood unburned on the front window sills; apparently the owners had overlooked the seasonal teaching of welcome, as they fled the previous evening's draconic descent.

A memory surfaced -- a menorah blazing proudly in the Madens' front window, the night he first arrived in Istanbul and they opened their house to him.

He exhaled carefully, then went softly toward the the kitchen, in search of tea.