Wynter's Rain

The Heart of the Dragon 1

eXtasy Books

Heat Rating: Sensual
Word Count: 28,244
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Wynter is a half-elven warrior haunted by his past and his love for the beautiful elven priestess Arianna. He must fight through monsters and the red dragon Brimstone while confronting the demons of his past and the mystery of a dragon-inscribed pendent to not only survive the day, but save Arianna from the evil that surrounds them. It will take his skill with the sword Dragon's Bane, his innate use of magic, and Arianna at his side to conquer the darkness that threatens to tear him apart. Only the love of Arianna can melt his frozen heart and save him.

Wynter's Rain
0 Ratings (0.0)

Wynter's Rain

The Heart of the Dragon 1

eXtasy Books

Heat Rating: Sensual
Word Count: 28,244
0 Ratings (0.0)
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Cover Art by Erin Dameron-Hill
Excerpt

I will always be with you. It was the last thing I heard in a dream before I woke up. The dream was dark and confusing. Images of a reptilian creature haunted my sleep. An image of a man in shining armor stood between me and the gloom, pushing the shadow away. Part of me realized who the figure was, but I couldn’t remember the figure’s name. The large-winged creature seemed familiar, like I should have recalled who it was. It stared at me with absolute malice, its hatred driving the stygian toward me, threatening to engulf my soul. The armed figure pushed back the oppressive evil and protected me. I remember calling out, and then it spoke the words that continue to haunt me.

I recognized the voice, but it wasn’t what I wanted to hear. It brought back memories and threatened to drive me into bitterness and anger unless I suppressed them. Memories, like my dreams, were not good. They both stirred up things best left forgotten and lost to the recesses of my mind. Unfortunately, my memories refused to stay buried. For a long time I embraced the melancholy. It wanted to consume my soul, my life force. I let it eat at me, sucking away the goodness that threatened to rise and push away the shadow that followed me around. It was a dismal time for me. The evil I did was unforgivable in my eyes, and it took an elf maiden to crack the ice surrounding my heart.

I rubbed my eyes as I tried to wake up. The wakefulness brought me to a point of grogginess, the voice in my dream already becoming a forgotten memory. For this I was glad.

The voice might have become lost in consciousness, but my vision from yesterday was still fresh in my mind. I needed to know what caused it, but the fear of it happening again kept me from using my magic to find out. It wasn’t like me to be afraid, especially like this, but the paralysis came with the vision, and not having any control was too much for me to handle. I hated having no control. It made me powerless. I was impressed by a level of fear I never thought existed. How was it possible for fear to hold one paralyzed? I still wasn’t able to figure out if it was the vision holding me in its thrall, or the fear from the dragons in the vision.

There were so many dragons counting them was impossible. Their breaths were of fire, their scales of crimson, the color of blood. I had a comprehension of dragons from my studies in magic and from my childhood, but I’d never seen so many at once. Murals in the elven kingdom of Dusk never had so many. Was it possible for so many to exist? One dragon could easily destroy a city, but thousands of them could cause so much destruction on the world.

It wasn’t just their size or their fiery breath. Their scales deflected most weapons, and even the strongest magic stood a chance of failing against a dragon. Dragons were the first creatures born when the gods made the world. They were called the children of the gods, and possessed the gift of magic along with might. Their skills with magic were unmatched due to their direct link to it. They didn’t need incantations or rituals. Dragons only needed to think it into reality.

I had a similar ability. Within me was a direct link also, but I still needed the words and components needed to release a spell. I never needed to study as much as a normal wizard, but it still taxed my body. Magic was a powerful destructive force, and I didn’t have the body of a dragon to withstand unlimited magical power. Being a half-elf had its disadvantages in that aspect. I wondered how much destruction the dragons in my vision could cause if they used magic instead of their might. There were so many, and it seemed my sword was the only thing keeping me alive from the rain of fire coming from the reptiles’ mouth.

I found it odd. Not once in my life did I remember seeing the sword glow like it did in the vision. It responded to the dragons with a life of its own. Not like a kinship, but something else. It was alive in my hands, and I could detect the beating of a heart as I held the sword up high to defy the dragon, though my heart came close to stopping out of fear. It seemed so ominous a vision and so clear. I’d never had a divination with this much clarity. They were always hazy and symbolic and left me with more questions. This vision was clear as day, but still left me with questions, along with a lagging fear deep inside me. Unlike the surrounding sky, the clarity of the vision was the most frightening of all.

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