Blake acts on instinct when he steals a dragon egg from his boss. He’s never done anything that stupid, and now, he’s in trouble, both with humans and dragons.
Especially with the dragon that captures him.
But Orran is not merely a dragon. He’s also a beautiful man, and Blake is stuck with him—and with a baby dragon after the egg hatches.
Blake’s boss isn’t done with him or with the baby, which means Blake has to gain Orran’s trust and convince him to take him with him. He has nothing to go back to in the city except death if his boss catches him. Death might still find him if he leaves with Orran, but he has nothing to lose.
Or does he?
Orran saw the egg drop to the ground. He roared, making several of the humans jump, including the one who had been holding the egg. Then he threw himself toward it. He needed to get to the egg. He needed to get it back.
It wasn’t that easy. Everyone around him was fighting. The humans were afraid of dragons, but that didn’t mean they would stop. If anything, having so many dragons there at once, especially adult ones, could turn to their advantage if they managed to kill even one of them. The survivors would be able to sell off the fallen’s body in pieces.
Orran wouldn’t allow that to happen.
When two humans rushed toward him, he swiped his tail at them and threw them against the closest wall. One of them didn’t get up. The other did, but it seemed like he wasn’t going to come for Orran again. Instead, he eyed the opening of the alley and tried to sneak out that way, but Octavia thumped her tail right in front of him and roared in his face.
Orran turned his attention back to the egg. He leaned down to grab it with one of his paws, but someone got there before he did.
The same human who had been holding it earlier grabbed it with both his hands and pulled it against his chest.
Orran roared. The sound made everything vibrate around them. Human cities weren’t made for dragons, and the alley was tiny, so small that Orran would have trouble getting back into the air. He didn’t care right now, though. He stood in front of the human and lowered his head to look him in the eyes. He wanted to tear the human’s head off, but he knew better. He needed to make sure the humans hadn’t hurt the egg.
The human stayed where he was. His eyes were wide and his face ashen, and he was looking around the alley, no doubt trying to find a way to escape. He couldn’t, though.
Orran wouldn’t allow him to run away. He needed to get the egg back, but when he reached for it again, the human shook his head and took a step sideways, as if trying to walk around Orran.
Orran huffed. He didn’t have time for this. The last thing he wanted was to shift. Humans weren’t aware that dragons weren’t merely animals, and Orran didn’t want any of them to find out, but it seemed this was where the situation was going. He needed to be fast, though, so only this human would see him.
He looked around. All the humans were busy fighting, so he doubted they would notice if he shifted. The pros outweighed the cons, no matter how much he disliked this, so he decided it was the best thing he could do.
He shifted. He hadn’t thought it possible, but the human’s eyes went even wider. He looked Orran up and down, opened his mouth, and croaked.
Orran ignored him and reached out. “Give me the egg,” he said.
That seemed to get the human’s attention again. He shook his head, then took a step back. “Don’t touch it.”
“I don’t care what you intended to do with it. It doesn’t belong to you.”
The human’s expression shifted.
Unfortunately, Orran wasn’t used to being with humans, and he had no idea what it meant.
“I know it doesn’t belong to me,” the human said. “How do I know it belongs to you, though?”
Orran snorted. “I’m a dragon. You know it belongs to me.”
The human looked down at the egg. “So? Even if you’re a dragon, I can’t know that it’s your egg. How am I supposed to make sure of that? Besides, you’re a guy.”
Orran had no idea what that had to do with anything. “I’ll kill you,” he said, his voice dark and steady. “You had no right to steal the egg. You have no right to kill and hurt us and to invade our home.”
The human shook his head frantically. “You don’t understand. I didn’t steal the egg. I was trying to rescue it from my boss.”
“Nice try, but as far as I can see, you’re the one holding it. You’re the one keeping it away from me. You have to give it to me.”
Things weren’t going anywhere. Orran waited, but the human didn’t seem to change his mind. “I’m sorry. I can’t give it to you. I can’t be sure it really is your egg, and after what just happened, I’m not going to trust anyone, not even you,” the human said.
Orran shifted back. If he couldn’t talk sense into the human, maybe he would be able to scare him.
The human squeaked when Orran lowered his head so close to him that he could feel the human’s breath on his snout. There was nowhere for him to go. His back was against the wall, and they were at the end of the alley, so he couldn’t sneak away. They could stay here forever, or at least until the human gave Orran the egg. The human, on the other hand, was going to want to leave eventually. Either that, or he’d faint. He looked like he might be about to.
Something heavy hit Orran’s side, and he roared. He turned to face whatever had touched him and realized that while he and the human had been talking, more humans had appeared. The dragons had always been outnumbered, but it hadn’t mattered because they were dragons. Now, though, it looked like it might become a problem.
Orran couldn’t lose the egg, and he wasn’t about to leave any of his friends in the humans’ hands. He knew what would be done to them if that happened, and death was preferable to that. He turned toward the human again, but the man still looked resolute. He wouldn’t give Orran the egg, and that meant that Orran would have to grab both of them. It would be faster than trying to talk the human into doing this. He could always deal with the man later—once the egg was safe.