Hello, all! Just a little over two weeks before the second Soldati Hearts book The Foxling Soldati is released! I'm so excited! This week's #TeaserTuesday features a snippet from the book which is now available for preorder from Dreamspinner Press, AmazonKindle, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and iBooks.
“King Pavoni is an arrogant, greedy bastard who believes everyone should kiss his boots. He doesn’t merely allow his warriors to behave in a deplorable manner—he encourages it. He takes what he wants and treats his servants like slaves and playthings. It’s disgusting.”
“Rayner,” Khalon warned gently. He lifted his eyes from his letter to meet Rayner’s gaze.
Rayner cleared his throat. “Forgive me. There is no love lost between us.”
Riley frowned, puzzled, and Khalon let out a sigh.
“Pavoni wished to unite our kingdoms through marriage. As I was destined to mate with a Soldati prince, that left Rayner as the next most powerful Soldati. Pavoni suggested—”
“Insisted,” Rayner corrected.
“Insisted,” Khalon acquiesced, “that Rayner marry Prince Merlo.”
“But you didn’t love him?” Riley offered.
Love? The question perplexed Rayner for a moment. Then he remembered Riley had lived among humans who chose their mates. Not everyone was so lucky. Rayner fortunately had some say in who he wed, due to his rank. He frowned deeply. “Worse than that. If I agreed to the marriage, Merlo would have power within the Soldati Realm through me, which would mean Pavoni would have power over the Soldati because Merlo is his puppet. Merlo has never had a singular thought of his own in his life. Pavoni isn’t interested in uniting our kingdoms. He wants power. I wasn’t about to give the bastard control over me or the Soldati.” Thankfully, Khalon had agreed with Rayner on all accounts.
“What happened?” Riley asked, eyes wide. “I’m guessing he didn’t take the rejection well.”
Khalon sat back with a sigh. “Pavoni is known for getting his way, always. So no, he did not take it well. Especially when someone below his station tells him he would rather, um—” Khalon winced. “—get sucked off by a demon and have his cock rot off than marry Prince Merlo.”
Toka coughed into his hand, clearly an attempt to keep from laughing. Riley had no such luck, and he was soon in tears from laughing so hard. Khalon was trying desperately to keep his frown in place, but Riley’s laughter was obviously making it difficult, and Khalon’s lips twitched up in the corners.
“Oh my God, Rayner, you said that?” Riley wiped a tear from his eye. “The dude must have been so pissed off.”
“That would be an understatement,” Khalon informed him. “As you can imagine, Pavoni has held a great deal of contempt for Rayner since that day.”
“The feeling is mutual,” Rayner muttered.