Prince Jules lives a very simple life. The least favorite of the Dragon King’s children, he is banished to his rooms where he wiles away his days going on amazing adventures through his books, with only his bodyguard Mabon as company. He has never left the palace, he’s never shifted into his dragon form, he’s never done anything.
Dragon shifter Lem has trained all his life to be a bodyguard, and when the Graithen attack, it is he who sounds the alarm. The Graithen are repelled, but not before Lem’s mentor and Jules’s bodyguard are killed.
Lem is assigned to Jules as the prince’s new bodyguard. They share in common the belief that the death of Mabon is their fault, but Lem is determined to keep Jules safe from any harm, even that which comes from Jules himself.
As they get to know each other, Lem grows to hate the way Jules is hidden away like a dirty little secret and he longs to take Jules away from the castle to visit the mountains, to learn to fly. As his dislike for Jules’s circumstances grow, so does his love for Jules himself, but it is forbidden, like so much in Jules’s life.
When the Graithen attack again, everything changes for Lem and Jules.
This will be available at All Romance Ebooks on August 1, and should actually be available to pre-order in a week or so.
excerpt of the non-smutty variety (hey, it happens!):
Jules woke a ten day after Mabon passed. He went from the hospital to his quarters, refusing to speak, to eat. Nothing. His heart was broken, and his body ached.
There was a knock at his door, then it opened, the captain of the guard coming in.
“Your bodyguard is here, Your Highness.”
He stared, his heart pounding furiously. What? What? His Mabon lived?
The captain stepped aside, and a tall, broad man with a square face, who was definitely not Mabon, walked in.
The man came up to him and stopped abruptly. “Lem, reporting for duty, Your Highness.”
No. No, this was not Mabon. Jules stood up and opened his door, pointed to the hall. No.
“I will not leave unless you do, sire.”
“He is yours, Highness,” the captain told him. “Your father has ordered it.” With that the captain bowed and left, closing the door behind him.
Jules shook his head, then turned to his bedroom. No. No. Mabon was his guard. Before he could close the door behind him, Lem was through it, right at his heels. He shook his head, shoved the man away. No. Lem stepped back next to him.
“I am your bodyguard, whether you wish it or not.”
“My bodyguard is Mabon.” His voice was destroyed, raw.
“I am sorry, sire. Truly.”
“Go. Please.” He needed peace. Silence. Mabon.
“I cannot.” Lem stood, hands at his sides, back straight.
Jules crept back into the shadows, curled into the bedding, and hid. He would stay in his nest, lest he burned anyone else. Lem moved to stand next to his nest, silent and tall.
The only safe space in all the world was gone.
Nonetheless, silent and still, Lem remained.
smut fixes everything