by Paula Quinn
Rulers of the Sky Book One
Between the earth and the sky, there is a man and his destiny.
Marcus is a Drakkon as ancient as the stars, stronger than a mountain, and the last of his kind. Men now rule the earth. The time of the Drakkon is over thanks to the legendary Phoenix Amber and the Council of Elders who use its power to transform Drakkon into humans. When the Council discovers he may be hiding a treasure worth more than any dragon horde, they will stop at nothing to have it and transform him against his will.
Being human is worse than anything Marcus could have imagined. His brilliant cerulean scales are gone, replaced with paltry skin he is sure could not even stop a bird if one flew into him. But worse than imprisonment in a male body are the awakenings of unfamiliar human desires that are nothing like the animal urges that were so easily satisfied as a Drakkon—emotions like loneliness that make him seek out companionship with a woman who, unfortunately for him, happens to be a sweetly-scented virgin.
Samantha Montgomery isn’t about to go to bed with a man who believes he used to be a reptile, especially one whose smoldering smiles make her think of being consumed alive by fire, and loving it. A romance writer and product of the New York State foster care system, Sam just wants some normalcy in her life. She’ll never get it with Marcus. Should it matter that his wickedly passionate touch tempts her to yield all, even if all he wants is her virtue? He is everything she doesn’t want in a man. Fear of commitment is one thing, not loving anyone or anything for ten centuries is another. But he won’t leave her castle. He’s arrogant, proud, and a bit delusional as to his abilities, but despite all his infuriating ways, including reading her mind and ceaselessly trying to convince her that the knights she writes about were useless beings clad in metal, he works his way into her life by fixing what’s broken; from the stone wall outside her battle-beaten castle to the wall around her heart.
When Marcus discovers the treasure that prompted his transformation, he must make a choice. Give up his human heart and save the Drakkon race, or surrender his heart to love and remain a man forever.
Genre: Paranormal RomancePurchase link(s): Amazon
Content/Theme(s): Dragons, Shifters, Writer
Release Date: December 27, 2016
Publisher: Dragonblade Publishing
Excerpt & More
Sam spent the morning recovering from the effects of Marcus’s kiss.
Whoever told him he kissed rather nicely had grossly understated that assessment. He didn’t kiss—he pillaged with a hot, searing passion she had never known. Laying waste to Sam’s senses, wreaking havoc on her mouth, her thoughts. Her thoughts…good for nothing ever again, but remembering the perverse pleasure of watching him, feeling him make rough, passionate love to her.
It took her almost an hour before her heart rate slowed and twice the time to cool the burning in the pit of her belly. Good thing she also remembered what he had become while he took her. His sleek flesh becoming scales, his eyes sparkling with a need she would never understand, and the fire that destroyed her.
But he wasn’t a dragon anymore.
She had to stop thinking about him. She had work to do and she refused to let Marcus the dragon-man drive her deeper into the crazy chasm. Pushing him out of her head, she replaced him with Sir Robert of Glastonbury.
The afternoon went by more quickly and Sam didn’t even mind the constant hammering coming from the bailey outside her window. Things were getting fixed and she finally finished chapter six. It was proving to be a good day.
Grinning at her monitor, she clicked save and reclined back in her chair. Sir Robert had been as difficult to mold into her story as trying to fit a cinderblock into her stone wall. But she’d done it. A little patience and some chipping deeper into his character and the plot was really starting to come together. She should celebrate. Maybe with a slice of Ellie’s truffle cake.
I don’t like it.
Sam’s smile vanished, along with her good mood. What?
Your story. I don’t like it.
Too many knights, for one.
She closed her eyes and cupped her forehead in her hand. The thorn in her otherwise perfect garden. It wasn’t his voice intruding on her private thoughts when she least expected it that made her want to pack up and move back to the States. But the fact that she was growing accustomed to it, found herself waiting for him to pop in. Maybe they would take her away with him, lock them both up in the same padded room.
And your Robert is too arrogant, he went on, sounding far more superior than all her knights put together. Were I in your tale, he would have been toast after chapter one and I would have won the heroine.
She didn’t know why his words made her belly flip, imagining him as the hero. Well, you’re not in my tale, and I don’t remember asking for your opinion. She waited for more, damn her, then shook her head and kicked the leg on her desk when he remained silent. Did he finally take the hint?
Hating herself for doing it, she left her chair and peeked over the deep casement of her window to see what was keeping him so busy.
He was standing with his back to her at the foot of her rickety drawbridge, examining it with his arms folded across his chest. His bare chest. Damn him.
Sam was careful not to think about how good he looked shirtless—or in a shirt, for that matter. Still, she noted the slight tilt of his head, as if he could sense her presence behind him, a couple of dozen feet up.
Readers don’t like weak-minded men, she told him, defending her latest hero, and to keep her mind off the way the sun spilled over the hard slopes and valleys defining Marcus’s shoulders.
I can see then why your writing is so difficult. Having to conjure up strong-minded men is a great challenge.
From her window, Sam pondered his stubborn repugnance toward mankind.
If that Padgora guy had really changed him into a man against his will, and unfortunately, she had no reason not to believe him after seeing his wings, then she guessed she could sympathize with his anger. But what made dragons so much better than men? They ate people!
Only when it was necessary.
She ignored that comment. So, you never met a man you liked?
No, Sam, I do not like maggots.
Men are not maggots, Marcus.
Compared to me, they are.
She drew out a long sigh. Trying to talk to him about anything other than himself was useless. Were you this conceited as a reptile?
He turned his head slowly and frowned up at her. Sam could feel, rather than see on his face the insult she caused him. She took a step back expecting him to sprout his wings, fly to her window, and strangle her.
Drakkons are more than simply reptiles.
And I wouldn’t hurt you. You are not my enemy, so stop being afraid of me.
It’s not easy. You used to blow fire and eat virgins.
Used to, he pointed out, the sting of bitterness reaching deep into Sam’s awareness.
She felt sorry for him. She knew it was madness, but was it any more so than letting him stay here? She didn’t know him or what he was capable of—though after his kiss this morning, she knew he was dangerous, at least to her virtue. He was repairing her castle for free, but that wasn’t why she hadn’t called the cops.
There was something she liked about him, besides looking at him.
Something she suspected Ellie felt as well. He was tactlessly honest, had an easy smile, and he possessed the raw virility of a team of rugby players. Who wouldn’t want him around? Maybe dragons had the ability to make people do what they wanted. He could read her thoughts, why not mold them like she did to her characters?
Because you were given a free will and even Drakkon cannot interfere with that.
She quirked her brow at him as he bent to retrieve his hammer from the ground. What about all the virgins you ate? Was it their free will to become your dinner?
Nay, they all had a choice to lose their purity before I caught them.
Before you…caught them? Sam asked with a horrified little gasp. I thought you said they went to you to save their villages or because they wanted to.
He shrugged, tucking the handle of his hammer beneath the waistband of his jeans. Some did want to, but I thought feeding those ridiculous tales of virgin sacrifices being offered up would be easier for you to accept.
Anger and disappointment coursed through her, making it difficult to reply right way. A place in her heart she didn’t even know existed went cold, as if a light of hope just went out. There were no knights in shining armor coming to sweep her off her feet. There were only men like Raymond. No matter what species they were. Why did she think Marcus might be any different?
So, you’re a liar then, Marcus?
He looked up, concern marring his features. I would not call it that. And I would like to speak to you about this Raymond. He enters your head often.
Sam stepped away from the window. She didn’t want to hear anymore, or talk to him, or see him for the rest of the day, or think about it, or…
The transformation worked well, Marcus, she flung at him on her way down the stairs. You’ve truly become a man.
When she reached the working door and yanked it open, Marcus stood on the other side waiting for her, ebony hair tousled from the hand he just finished raking through it.
“That was a cruel thing to say, Sam. I would not have expected it from you.”
He looked so affected by what she’d called him that she almost apologized. “You don’t even know me.” She pushed by him instead, deciding it was better if he hated her. She’d been mad to let him stay. She’d taken in a few stray cats in the past; not having the heart to leave them to their own defenses on the busy streets of Manhattan, but Marcus was no freaking cat!
I know you better than Eric or even Raymond.
His voice in her head, and the name he spoke inside it proved the truth of his words and stopped her in her tracks before she reached the stables. He could read her mind, know her most private thoughts.
No one knew of Raymond, not even Ellie. It mortified her that he knew what a fool she’d been, how willing she’d been to trust that lying bastard.
He was more the fool than you, Sam.
She didn’t want to talk…or think about this. Not with a man she’d just met. Not with anyone. Covering her ears, she hurried toward the stables.
Growing up, she’d learned to keep her feelings to herself. She’d had to, for there was no one to share them with. It was why she wrote, to express herself without truly revealing who she was. A lonely, twenty-six-year-old virgin who believed in happily-ever-afters. Marcus was right, even Raymond didn’t know her deepest dreams…not the important ones.
“Tell them to me.” A tender sigh across her thoughts. No, he was here, speaking aloud, standing just behind her.
She closed her eyes and called upon every shred of sheer will she possessed to keep from turning around. His warm breath mingled with the rich elegance of his voice along her nape tempted her to obey his request.
“You already know them,” she accused, fighting his allure. She stepped away from him and reached for her saddle.
“No, some you keep hidden too deep for even me to see.”
“I’ll tell you and then will you leave me alone?”
He nodded, watching her saddle her horse.
“It’s simple,” she told him, fitting her foot into the stirrup and hoisting herself up. “I want someone who’s going to stick around. And he isn’t you.”
With a snap of her wrists, she led her horse out of the stable, and then out of the bailey.
She didn’t need this. She was just beginning to settle comfortably into her new, neat little life complete with a sweet old grandmother and a levelheaded pediatrician for a boyfriend. The last thing she wanted in it was a dragon!
Levelheaded is not what you need, Sam.
Damn it. You promised to leave me alone.
But I am a miserable liar.
Go away. And don’t tell me what I need.
You need passion.
Sam felt the gush of wind, heard the flap of huge wings behind her head and turned. There was no time to scream, though still she tried, as Marcus swooped down and hooked his arms under hers.
“Can a man do this?” he asked softly, pressing his mouth to her ear as he lifted her out of her saddle and into the air. “Don’t be afraid,” he coaxed in a sorcerer’s whisper, looping one arm around her waist and dragging her spine up against his chest. He crossed his other arm over her collarbone and coiled his legs around hers. “I’ve got you.”
Purchase link(s): Amazon
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