Published by: eXtasy Books
Author : Cheryl Headford
Word Count :92962
Publication Date :2021-02-05
Series : Dark Fairy Tales#2
Heat Level :
- Product Code: 978-1-4874-3183-9
Tay thought his life couldn’t get any stranger—then he met Godric, and the dragon.
Tay is trying to settle into his new life with a group of strangers who call themselves his family. Even Willow has deserted him. Then he meets Wisp, and things look up – until a shadow assassin attempts to kill him, Cale traps his shadow in a gem and the only way to save him appears to be a mad wizard.
What can possibly top all that? Meeting a hundred-thousand-year-old king and his dragon friend, the very dragon on whom the entire city is built.
They could have ended their journey last night, but Tay had dragged his feet in every way he could, delaying until he was able to beg to camp. Maybe Willow understood more than Tay thought, or maybe he had his own reasons for not wanting to be home just yet, because he didn’t put up much of an argument. And so, Tay had his reprieve, had a few more hours of being a normal sixteen-year-old, camping in a wood.
He’d tried so hard to keep up the charade in his own head, but it hadn’t been easy. In the end, it hadn’t been possible at all, and Tay had ended up miserable and wishing they’d pushed on after all. How could he pretend anymore? How could he shut his mind to the fact that his companions were a car driver with moss-green skin and yellow eyes, and a pure white ice-man who spoke to him inside his head? Then there was the crowd of fairies who liked to sit in his hair and giggle in his ear when they weren’t keeping up a running commentary of all the things they saw as they travelled.
Tay had a lot to thank the ethen for, and he became more determined than ever that one way or another, he was going to get the little fairies the recognition they deserved. No more would the ignorant refer to them as buzzers and treat them as little more than annoying insects. But that was for later. For now, as he watched the fire elementals dance and crawl along his stick, all he could think about was that in a few short hours, he’d be meeting his mother and sisters for the first time. He was so not ready.
It wasn’t as if he had any experience to draw from, any pointers or advice. It was hardly a subject talked about at school, contained in any textbook, taught to children by parents, or generally cropped up in TV sitcoms and dramas—well, only fantasy which he’d never been particularly keen on. There was nothing in his background to prepare him for this, and he hadn’t exactly been eased into it. No, in a very short time, he’d gone from being a perfectly ordinary, sixteen-year-old schoolboy, with loving, caring parents, to some lost fairy prince on the run from demons, about to meet his real family for the first time. He’d left everything behind at the drop of a hat—his life, his parents, his friends, and now, he’d left Cale behind to.
Thinking about his best friend brought a treacherous prickle to his eyes. At least he knew Cale would be okay. The demon had been defeated, and Cale was in safe hands, learning how to control his newfound demon powers. He seemed to be enjoying it. For Tay, it wasn’t so easy. Saying goodbye to one family was bad enough, but meeting a brand new one? To fall into a role he’d never been trained for? To be held up in the spotlight as…whatever—a hero, a prince, a rival, a threat? Oh God, what was he going to do? How the hell was he going to learn to survive in this place, let alone rule it?
Swallowing hard, Tay battered down the fear that threatened to overwhelm him whenever he thought about what it meant to be a prince. One thing at a time. One step after another. There’d be time to think of that later, after he’d met his…mother.
“We’re packed up,” a terse voice announced. “It’s time to go.”
Willow’s voice was still strange, although not as jarring as it had been before. Back in…back in what Tay still thought about as the real world, Willow’s voice had spoken both inside and outside his head, with a very slight time delay. Like watching television when the lip-synch is off. It was the same but had been fine-tuned on this side of the divide and was now seamless. In addition, he also now heard words that were never spoken aloud at all, and unless he was concentrating, he was hard-pressed to say which was which.
With a deep sigh, Tay got up and stretched. He hadn’t realized how long he’d been sitting there, staring into the flames. It didn’t help that the fire elementals had been so happy with their dancing, possibly because the ethen had sung to them, that they’d forgotten to consume the stick, so it was exactly as it had been when he’d first thrust it into the flames. It was easy to lose track of time when you were waiting for a stick to burn down, and it never did. So many things to learn, to get used to.