Author Cassandra Clare Shares Deleted QUEEN OF AIR AND DARKNESS Scene, Plus Snippet

The Shadowhunter Chronicles Creator Cassandra Clare talks to Audible and shares a QUEEN OF AIR AND DARKNESS Deleted Scene.

We’re so very much waiting patiently for the release of the final book of The Dark Artifices Trilogy, Queen of Air and Darkness, and Cassandra has been wonderfully torturing teasing up some snippets from the book this past month. You can read yesterday’s snippet below:

Emma raised her sword. “Then strike me down now.”

Zara took a step backward. “I said you had twenty-four hours.”

Rage sizzled through Emma’s nerves. “And I said strike me down now.” She whipped the sword toward Zara; it caught the edge of Zara’s cloak and sliced through it. “You came here. You challenged me. So fight me!”

Emma Carstairs Poster of image for sale on

Then during an interview with, the Shadowhunter Queen released a deleted scene as well:

“We should stay away from each other,” she said. “Like Magnus said.”

“I know. I wouldn’t have come to see you, but there was something I wanted to ask.” He let the knife go. It sank into the wall beside one of Emma’s. She felt a twist of grim pride; people often underestimated how good a Shadowhunter Julian was. “It’s kind of a strange question, but if you were going to think of a symbol, one thing that made you think of Livvy — what would it be?”

“Her saber,” Emma said. “Why?”

“It — doesn’t matter.” His voice was husky. “We probably shouldn’t talk about emotional things.”

“So what can we talk about? Not our feelings, not your family — what?”

“We throw ourselves into what’s happening,” Julian said. “We do everything we can to take down the Cohort.”

It was Emma’s turn to grab a knife. She threw it hard, viciously, and it hit the wall hard enough to crack the wood.

Well, that was lovely. And if you want to know how Cassie felt about QOAAD, she used a gif to describe her feelings:

If you don’t receive Cassie’s monthly newsletters, you likely missed out on a big deleted scene from book one of TDA, Lady Midnight. In this scene, we get a little more information on the Ashdown siblings Cameron and Paige, and how they came to know the Blackthorn children. Thanks to for this:

Here’s a fun little blast from the past—this is a deleted scene from Lady Midnight! Because the scene never made it into the final book, it hasn’t been fact-checked, and thus there may be some inconsistencies between it and the rest of TDA. Enjoy!


Emma discovered the sea caves when she was eleven years old. She’d been at the beach with her parents when she found them — great fingers of gray rock reaching into the ocean, and boring through them, like tunnels in the stone, were the caves. They were open to the ocean on both ends, and they smelled delightful, like sea water and wet rock and dark, secret things.

She was thirteen years old when she and Julian declared the sea caves their official meeting place. If anything ever happened at or to the Institute — and they both had nightmares about it, ever since the attack during the Dark War — they would meet at the caves.

She was fourteen years old when she first showed the sea caves to Cameron Ashdown.

The Ashdowns had come to Los Angeles after the Dark War, easily situating themselves among the small Conclave of Shadowhunters who lived in the city. Although all Conclaves were small now, since the deaths in the war. The Clave was doing everything it could to track down every wayward mundane who might have a drop of Nephilim blood, even if their family had left the Shadowhunters generations ago. Still, it would be decades before they were the strength they once had been.

Cameron, his parents, and his younger sister, Paige, moved into a house in Santa Monica and, as soon as they could, arranged to visit the Institute to decide if Paige and Cameron were going to have lessons with the Blackthorns or hire their own tutor.

Diana was there to greet them and show them the training rooms, the library, and the classroom. Emma was in the training room, practicing fencing with Livvy. She was taller and stronger than Livvy, but Livvy was lightning-fast on her feet, which gave her the advantage with a saber. Ty and Julian were watching: Ty was cheering for Livvy, and Jules for Emma, as if it were a real match.

The door opened, and Cameron and his sister came in with Diana.

Emma stopped in her tracks, which allowed Livvy to score with the side of her blade across Emma’s shoulder. “Emma!” she complained. “You’re not paying attention.”

But Emma was already pushing her mask back, letting her hair spill down. Cameron Ashdown might have grown up in Idris, but he looked like the perfect California boy, with fiery red hair, tanned skin, broad shoulders, and hazel eyes. His nose looked as if it had been broken before, but it lent his face a charming asymmetry.

His sister Paige was a small copy of him, with short red hair and a pointed chin. She regarded Emma with dislike, perhaps because Emma was staring at her brother.

Emma had been thinking lately, rather scientifically, about the fact that she was fourteen years old and hadn’t kissed anyone yet. Nor, she thought, growing up in the Blackthorn house, was it likely. They rarely saw other children their age; the Conclave simply wasn’t that big, and now that the Academy in Idris had re-opened, most younger Shadowhunters were being trained there.

She thought of Julian, the way that when he smiled at her, he seemed to put his whole self into the smile. The way it lit up the room and made her heart catch. Cameron Ashdown was looking at her curiously as Diana made the introductions; Livvy was tugging off her helmet. Lowering her blade, Emma smiled at Cameron, putting all of herself into it.

When he smiled back, he looked dazzled.

Later, after the Ashdowns had gone, Ty said, “I didn’t like them.”

Julian ruffled his hair. Instead of saying what Emma had expected — something about how Ty had to give them a chance — he said, “I didn’t like them either.”

“Why not?” she asked, curious.

He shrugged. “I just didn’t.”

“Well, too bad,” said Diana. “You kids need to spend time with some people who aren’t Blackthorns.” She eyed Emma. “Or Carstairs.”

The Ashdowns came back, the next weekend, and the next weekend after that. It was the summer, and the group spent their time at the beach, getting sunburned, swimming in the water — all except Emma — and building sandcastles with the younger children. Ty built meticulous sandcastles, carefully sculpted, while Livvy’s were shapeless and towering, collapsing under their own weight as they climbed toward the sky. They buried Tavvy in sand, and Drusilla sat cross-legged and lost in a book — Paige was nearly the same age as her, but the girls ignored each other.

Later, Emma thought that should have been a warning to her. Later she blamed herself for everything.

She was fourteen when she brought Cameron to see the caves. He had been teasing her about never going into the water; she laughed, but didn’t tell him why. Instead she drew him away from the group and brought him into her favorite of the caves: not the biggest, but the longest and most winding. It was possible to find a bend in the tunnel where the ocean couldn’t be seen from either side.

She drew Cameron in after her and faced him, her heart pounding. She studied the hazel color of his eyes in the shadows, their mixture of blue and brown and green. She held out her hands, not knowing how to be anything but direct. “Do you want to kiss me?” she said.

He swallowed hard and nodded. He was shaking as he pulled her toward him and kissed her gently, her head tipping back, her hands finding purchase on his shoulders. She stroked his arms, lightly, timidly; his mouth was warm and soft, and he tasted like strawberry ice cream.

Kissing was everything she’d hoped it would be. It was like a good kind of drowning, filling her ears and eyes with forgetfulness, blocking out the crashing sound of the waves against the shore. Cameron’s touch became more urgent, sliding up from her waist, and she leaned harder against him, and that was when she heard someone scream.

Read the rest of the scene at TMISource.

I have a feeling this may help to understand Cameron Ashdown, as he, according to Cassie, has more book time in the finale.

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By Nat, the Geek Girl

Southern California native who likes movies, books (Shadowhunter Chronicles, NA, YA fantasy, Red Rising series), TV shows (The Sandman), and San Diego Comic-Con. I also like to write, but don't get to do much of that aside from on here. I fell into the BTS rabbit hole, and I refuse to leave.