As a clan whore Avery knows where his place is in the dragon world; at the very bottom. He’s grown used to that and to being expected to be available to anyone in the clan who wants him. But when he’s thrown out of his clan and left to fend for himself he becomes lost in the world. While searching for a new clan to belong to he comes across Donovan, a powerful dragon unlike any he’s ever met.
Donovan doesn’t allow whores in his clan because to him everyone should be equal, but convincing Avery that he’s worth more than what he’s always been told he is turns out to be a frustrating task for both of them. Avery doesn’t want to be a whore anymore, but he has never known anything else, and Donovan refuses to treat him like that. They’ll have to heal the scars of Avery’s past abuse if they hope to ever have a future together.
The storm barreled down on Avery as he fought to stay in the air. His thick leathery wings were some protection from the rain, but finding shelter and warmth as a dragon who couldn’t even breathe fire was a difficult task. He’d been flying all night, but he’d started to drop in altitude as the storm and his own exhaustion began to get to him. When he was barely twenty feet off the ground and on the outskirts of some unknown territory he let himself fall to the ground.
It wasn’t a graceful landing, but at least he hadn’t broken anything this time as he came crashing back to earth in the middle of a field. He lifted his head up and breathed in deeply. He was trying to get a taste of the other dragons around, whoever they might be. But he couldn’t get a good scent of them over the smell of the rain and the cows in a nearby pasture. He took shelter for the night under a large tree and tucked his wings around himself. That night he dreamed of his old clan and of the pain that came with being the lowest member. He knew his place well, but waking with the taste of blood in his mouth had never been something he’d gotten used to, despite how many times he’d been told that he would come to accept his lot in life.
At dawn, the hard rain turned to a gentle drizzle, but it still chilled him to his bones as he flew through it. By noon he was cold, worn out, and too hungry to continue on. He’d been following Interstate 70, for lack of a better plan, and when he smelled a powerful dragon clan he decided to drop down and see if they’d give him a bit of lunch, or at least allow him to hunt on their lands for a while.
Avery nearly crashed into their front gate when he landed in a haphazard heap with his wings spread out all around him. He quickly recovered and shifted so that he could talk to whoever their leader was. A bath would have been in order, if he’d had time, but the rain had helped some. He brushed some dirt off his naked skin and hoped there was no blood on him anywhere that he’d missed. He knew how a clan of powerful dragons were, and what they would expect from him. He’d grown up with dragons like that. He’d never known anything else.
He walked up to the front door and knocked as loudly as he dared. Then, when he heard someone moving about inside the large farmhouse, he dropped to his knees on the concrete front steps and waited for someone to come see him. He kept his chin tucked in against his chest and closed his eyes. His shoulders were sore from flying halfway across the United States, but he still kept his hands behind his back. They would all be more dominant than he was. He knew that without having to question it. And they would not want to see any kind of aggression from him. This position was the best for what he needed.
The door swung open and Avery felt someone’s gaze on him, silently assessing him, and he hoped they found something they liked in him. He would only need their assistance for an hour or so, just enough so that he could regain some of his strength before he could be on his way again—to where, though, he wasn’t sure. He hadn’t picked a place to go when he’d been cast out of his old clan.
“What’s your name?” a deep, rough voice asked him.
Avery shrank a little under the force of that voice. He knew how powerful this dragon must be by the strength he sensed in his tone. He knew what would be expected of him while he was with them. It would be worth it, in the end. He’d been through worse. “Avery, sir.”
“And what clan do you belong to?” the dragon continued.
“None, sir. I’ve been discarded.”
The dragon let out a low growl and Avery moved back on his knees. There were only a few reasons that a dragon would be thrown out of his clan, and though Avery hadn’t murdered anyone, most of the clans he’d taken shelter with had assumed that he had and had treated him like the outcast he was.