In a world where Fae and Vampire will forever be at odds, a Vampire wins the crown, ruling the Fae Realm for the first time in history.
An Incubus, Leolin Kyffin, and his barren Succubus, Louise Bach, plot to end King Zachariah Orsova’s life, allowing them to rule the Fae Realm.
Through Louise’s encouragement, Leolin walks into a female Vampire’s dream and mates with her, breaking Zachariah’s law. His hope is to create what he thinks will be the most powerful half-breed known to the Realm.
When Zachariah kills the Succubus, Leolin vows revenge, sacrificing his half-breed son, Monty Saxon, and using him as a pawn to tear out the King’s heart, hoping to make him feel the pain of death while living.
When Leolin walks into Zachariah’s dreams, he fills his mind with unimaginable thoughts and desires. Doing the same to Monty, he secures his devious plot, patiently waiting for the precise moment Zachariah and Monty will be brought together as one.
The choices Leolin makes all add up to delivering a fate worse than death to his half-breed son and the King of the Fae Realm. Will Leolin avenge the murder of Louise? Will Zachariah and Monty survive, or will they be left suffering in the end?
“Allow me to do the questioning, Håkon,” Zachariah said as they walked into the Saxon Inn.
“Aye, my King,” he muttered, annoyance lacing his tone.
Zachariah turned and glared at him. “Need I remind you with whom you are speaking?”
“Very well then.” Zachariah turned and headed straight for the bar. “Two ales, please,” he said to the barkeep.
“On the house for the King and my dear old friend,” Ivar said, smiling.
Håkon stared at him for a moment before he let out a tight smile, going back to his standard hard glare a moment later. Ivar poured two ales and set the mugs in front of them.
“How can I help you gentlemales this evening?”
Zachariah took a sip and sighed. “Very well. I’ve heard some strange whispers about the other evening’s…events.”
“Events?” Ivar questioned.
“I heard about the possibility of a murder or two here. You wouldn’t know anything about that, would you?”
“No, my King. I just work the bar.” Ivar smiled, his nerves making his bottom lip twitch.
“It would be wise to be truthful while addressing your King,” Zachariah said, lifting the mug to his lips once more.
“If you know something, Ivar, tell him,” Håkon said. “It will be much easier on all of us.”
Ivar leaned too close for the Viking’s comfort, forcing him to place his arm between the male and the King.
“Aye,” the King said. “Allow the male some space.” Håkon glanced at Zachariah, then sat on the stool next to him and picked up the mug of ale, taking a long pull.
“It was two Fae. Somehow, they came in undetected. When Rhun figured out what was going on, they threatened him with a knife. I assure you, it was only self-defense.”
Zachariah glanced at his guardsmale, then picked up his mug and took another sip. “Very interesting.”
“That is the Gods’ honest truth, my King.”
“Ivar! We need another barrel…” Rhun stopped as he rounded the back corner of the bar. “My King,” he said, bowing his head.
“Rhun Saxon. How are you this fine evening?”
“I’m well, my King. What brings you in? I have no females available for feeding. All have been used already.”
“I’m not interested in feeding. I thought I would come in and have a mug of ale while Baldric fits my new friend for some clothing. Seems someone left him naked, bloodied, and beaten in the back alley between your establishment and my tailor’s. Does any of this ring a bell?”
A snarl lifted Rhun’s upper lip. Before his fangs descended, Håkon reached out and grabbed him by the shirt collar. “Don’t even think about it. If you lower those short little pricks of yours, I will pluck them out. Have I made myself clear?”
“Calm down, Viking. Let the male go.”
“Aye, Sire,” he growled in the innkeeper’s face before stepping away.
“Now, tell me, why would you do such a thing to your son, Rhun?”
Rhun spit on the floor. “He is not my lad.”
“No?” Zachariah asked, playing ignorant.
“My wife lay with another male. A Fae.” He spit again. “I hope she burns in the pits of the Realm for her trespasses.”
“Oh? Is Carlyn around? I could question her for you. I’m sure she would be honest with her King.”
Zachariah probed Rhun’s mind and, with ease, maneuvered his way in. Unnoticed, he sifted through his memories until he came to Carlyn’s body seizing under a silver stake pushed into her heart. His hand ached from the burn of the silver. He then probed between the dark corners and down the black corridors, seeing a large, blurry-faced male fucking Monty, a female positioned below, enjoying his cock. A knife dripped with blood before it was plunged into the neck of another blurry-faced male. A Fae. Zachariah pulled back from his mind.
“She had a tragic accident on her horse. It bucked her off, breaking her neck. I always told her that stallion was no good for riding, but you know how females are. She thought she could tame the beast.”
Zachariah chuckled. “Those females. Such naughty creatures.”
“That’s right. Monty is now unclaimed as my heir.”
“So now that Monty’s mother has passed and you have unclaimed him as your son, are you telling me he is my responsibility? The King of the Realm is now responsible for a lad raised by another male who, as I can see with my own eyes, still walks the Human Realm? You left him broken in the alley with no food, shelter, or clothing on his back. As the King, it has now been placed on my shoulders to care for a lad who was raised to know nothing more than stables, cleaning chamber pots, sweeping floors, and fucking?”
“He is not a Saxon. I said I no longer claim him.”
“Mind your tone. You are speaking with your King,” Håkon reminded Rhun.
“Thank you, Viking. He shall mind his tone now, or he will be licking the shit off my boots.” Zachariah smiled, then asked, “Do you know what type of Fae she lay with?”
“No,” Rhun whispered.
Håkon cupped his ear. “What was that? No…?”
“No, my King. I do not know what type of Fae Carlyn lay with,” Rhun grumbled. Håkon smirked when, out of the corner of his eye, he saw Ivar trying to stifle a chuckle.
“I see.” Zachariah threw back the last of the ale in the mug and slammed it down on the bar. He stood, forcing everyone to look at him. “You didn’t take a moment to ask before driving a stake through her heart? What a sight that must have been for you. Does your hand still hurt from the silver burn? Maybe you should’ve asked the Vampire and two Fae you slaughtered in one of this fine establishment’s rooms upstairs.” His gaze flickered to Ivar, whose eyes had widened. “Ivar, this is your last chance to tell me the truth. If you lie again, you will be bowing headless.”
“I didn’t see what happened, my King. All I know is he asked me to help clean up the mess. I know nothing about his wife and son.”
Zachariah refocused on Rhun. “Come before me and kneel.”
Rissa Blakeley is the author of the paranormal romance series, Corvidae Guard, and the post-apocalypse saga, Shattered lives. Her short story, A Little Taste of Naughty, was part of the best-selling anthology, Just Desserts.
As a native New Yorker, Rissa is now a Georgia transplant, who is completely addicted to black coffee, La Croix and obsessively listens to songs on repeat. Her days are full of characters screaming for more scenes, cats living up to their Harry Potter namesakes, lazy dogs, a teenage daughter bringing Emo back, and a Viking husband, who finds her puns less than funny. When Rissa isn’t writing, she can be found procrastinating on social media.