Dragon's Blood: a Reverse Harem Fantasy Romance (The Dragon's Gift Trilogy Book 2)

Dragon's Blood: a Reverse Harem Fantasy Romance (The Dragon's Gift Trilogy Book 2)

Jasmine Walt & May Sage


He wants the Dragon’s Gift.

Those words echoed in Dareena’s head, over and over again, as she sat by Lucyan’s bedside. She gripped the dragon prince’s hand tightly in hers while the healer helped him swallow a concoction to speed his recovery. Her heart ached to see him so battered—the cocky grin he always sported was gone, and his head and ribs were bound tightly with muslin bandages. The air in the room was as grim as the black and blue bruises on his face and chest, and not just because one of her beloveds was laid out in bed looking as though he’d been trampled by the horses.

No, they were all gathered here—Dareena, Lucyan, Drystan, Alistair, and Tariana—because the elves had them by the throat. They needed to figure out their next move.

“Thank you,” Lucyan said hoarsely, waving the healer away. “Please, leave us for a moment.” He sank back against the pillows, looking exhausted.

Every word he spoke seemed to pain him, and Dareena wished they could leave him alone to rest.

But time was not on their side, not when an envoy from the elven kingdom would be here any moment to collect her.

The healer bowed and left, shutting Lucyan’s bedroom door behind her. Once she was out of earshot, Lucyan opened his eyes and pinned Drystan with a fierce stare.

“Tell me what happened.”

Drystan sucked in a breath. “I shifted,” he said, and he sounded as if he still couldn’t quite believe it. “After Father threw you against that wall, I grew so angry, I just changed. The two of us crashed through the window in the throne room, and we briefly fought outside, but Father flew off after I wounded him in the eye. It would appear he’s headed for the Black Mountains.”

“Well, good riddance,” Lucyan huffed. He squeezed Dareena’s hand and gave her a fond look. “I’m glad you made it out of the throne room safely. In fact, all of you look remarkably well for having been in a fight with a dragon king. So why does it feel like we are about to go to someone’s funeral?”

“Because Drystan may have won the battle against our father, but we have lost the war against the elves,” Tariana said, her voice brittle. “Solara arrived with a message from Arolas, Elvenhame’s crown prince and the new general. They have slaughtered or imprisoned over half our forces.”

“Half?” What little blood remained in Lucyan’s face drained completely. “How is that possible?”

“Apparently, the elves have managed to get their hands on some newfangled warlock spell,” Tariana said bitterly. “They have a strange magic that forces us to change back into human form when we draw near and also greatly weakens the dragon born and prevents them from healing. They managed to kill three of our sisters by forcing them back into human form mid-flight, and laughed as they fell to the ground and split open their skulls. Three of them. And two more have been taken prisoner.”

“Fuck,” the brothers said in unison as Dareena stared at Tariana, frozen with shock and horror. Three dragons dead…over half their forces slaughtered or clapped in chains. Her stomach roiled, and she pulled in a slow, deep breath through her nose before she could become sick all over Lucyan’s bed.

Pull yourself together, Dareena, she told herself. The last thing the brothers needed was for her to fall apart right now.

“Thankfully,” Drystan said, his tone rife with sarcasm, “the elves have been magnanimous enough to hold off on wiping out the rest of our forces. Instead, they have agreed to release the prisoners in exchange for Dareena.”

“What?” Lucyan roared, coming off the bed. His eyes blazed red with anger for a split second before they widened with pain and he collapsed on the bed again.

“Lucyan!” Dareena jumped up from her seat, pressing her hands into his shoulders. “Lucyan, please, don’t tax yourself. You need to rest.”

“Like hell I do,” Lucyan snarled, his eyes bright with the same combination of anger and grief that roiled in Dareena’s heart. “They can’t take you from us. You’re our Dragon’s Gift.” He gripped her wrists, an agonized look on his handsome face.

Dareena sucked in a shaking breath, blinking back tears of her own. “I don’t have a choice,” she said softly, pulling back. She met each of the brothers’ gazes in turn, and her heart ached at the stricken looks on their faces. “If turning myself over to the elves means saving thousands of lives, I have to do it.”

Drystan gave a deep sigh, while Alistair scraped a hand through his blond hair.

“As commendable as that is,” Tariana said softly, “and as much as I don’t want to lose half our army, you are the only thing that is standing between our line and certain extinction. You are far too valuable to be used as a pawn.”

“Nevertheless, I must go,” Dareena said, just as softly. “If I do not, they will wipe out the rest of our army and take the kingdom. At least this way they will only have one hostage, not thousands.”

“If you are to go,” Alistair growled, “you’ll not go alone. I will accompany you.”

Drystan and Lucyan both nodded their assent. “One of us needs to be by your side while the rest of us figure out how to clean up this bloody mess,” Lucyan said.

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