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RelationshipThe Cruel Prince. It is revealed that Locke wanted to test Taryn to see if she really loved him and to see if she could love like the fey and not like a mortal. His test involved forcing Taryn to remain silent while he began a relationship with Jude.
After the coronation where Prince Balekin stages his unsuccessful coup, Locke goes to Madoc's estate to speak with Madoc about marrying Taryn. When Jude confronts Taryn about Locke, Taryn tells her that she wanted to tell her but she couldn't because Locke said if she could endure it would be a test of love. Taryn reveals that the day Jude saw Cardan making her cry he was telling her that it was because of her that he kicked dirt onto Jude's food. Locke has tricked Cardan and his friends into thinking it was Jude who stole Locke away from Nicasia. So it was Jude they were punishing. Cardan said Jude was suffering in Taryn's place and that if she knew why, she would stop fighting Cardan and back down, but Taryn couldn't tell Jude.
Jude knows it must have made Taryn furious that Locke was kissing her and that she slept in his bed. While Jude and Taryn duel, Jude asks Taryn if it was fun to deceive her, if she liked the feeling of having something over her, and if she liked that he was flirting and kissing Jude all the while promising Taryn she would be his wife. Taryn responds that she hated it but that she isn't like Jude and wants to belong in Elfhame. She was angry that Jude never asked her before going against Prince Cardan and that while he may have started things because of her, Jude kept it going. She had to show Locke that she was different.
When Madoc talks to Taryn about his conversation with Locke he tells her that Locke informed him that as Madoc knows, the Folk are changeable people, but he'd still like to take Taryn to wife. He tells Taryn that this means that she will not find him particularly constant. He said nothing of his relationship with Jude, but when Madoc asked him about it replied, "Mortal feelings are so volatile that it's impossible to help toying with them a little." Madoc tells Taryn that he finds Locke to be unworthy of both girls. When Taryn asks if Madoc forbids her from marrying him, Madoc tells her it won't end well, but he won't stand in front of her happiness, and not even in front of misery that she chooses for herself. Finally, he reminds her that whatever pleasure she finds with Locke, her loyalty is to her family.
Taryn asks Jude to speak with Cardan about revoking Locke's new title of Master of Revels. Taryn explains how Locke craves dramatic experiences, and as Master of Revels he can create stories. He doesn't think of parties as food and drinks and music, but rather as a dynamic that might create conflict, and Taryn doesn't like conflict. Locke wants to see how Taryn will react to things he does. Jude agrees, recalling how he wanted to know if Taryn loved him enough to let him court Jude while she stood by, silent and suffering. Taryn says she doesn't care Locke taking lovers, but hates him being away from her. Taryn tells Jude that when she is with Locke she feels like the hero of the story, but when he’s not there things don’t feel right.
Taryn and Locke get married, taking the vows the Faerie way with no one around.
Taryn turns up on Vivienne and Jude’s door step, telling them she killed Locke. Taryn explains that Locke had promised to love her until he died. However, he was unkind to Taryn during their marriage and blamed it on the fact that the Folk don’t love the same way as humans do. He would leave Taryn alone in his great, awful estate for weeks on end. Taryn distracted herself by cultivating hybrid roses in the garden, commissioning new curtains, and hosting month-long revels for his friends. Finally, Locke told Taryn that "the story had gone out of her." She explained to Locke that things had to change but he acted as though Taryn was being ridiculous. He kept talking, as if he could talk Taryn out of her own feelings. This is when was she noticed that there was a jeweled letter opener on the desk, which she used to stab Locke in the throat, killing him. Later Taryn reveals to Jude that she is pregnant with Locke’s child.