High priest S’Rak has more than earned the trust and friendship of Prince Jethain, and the love and acceptance of the reticent Captain Jisten. Mindful of the harsh price of the Koilathan decency laws, S’Rak and Jisten have taken care to keep their love private. But when the prince is attacked by chaos magic, the pair must reveal the depths of their relationship in order to save him.
The jealous prince is certain that S’Rak seduced his only friend because of the nickname, and that nothing good will come of their affair. Will Jethain come to accept the pair’s love for each other, or will he try to steal the captain, his oldest, dearest, and only real friend, for himself?
While Jethain wrestles with his dilemma, the Lord of Night has no such difficulties. He is infuriated by the very nature of the relationship S’Rak and Jisten share, for it violates His most sacred Law, that of free will. Can Jisten convince Zotien that his love for S’Rak is true, and that he freely accepted the bond joining them at a soul-deep level? Or will the Outlaw Hunt ride down and destroy S’Rak for his crimes, and thereby destroy the very prophecy S’Rak was sent to preserve?
“You’re a bold one, bringing me to your bed in your suite,” Jisten said, casually covering himself with a hand. “Did I pass out?”
“You were exhausted and fell asleep after mass,” said Rak. “Scorth helped me get you in bed.”
“Don’t you realize the danger to us both should someone override Tebber and enter?”
“You are not in danger. Do you really think someone could get in here, past all my hounds, if I did not wish it? Even if some brave soul managed that feat, my past as a sex slave is clear to those who can read brands, and male sex slaves cannot top. I would reveal myself should anyone attempt to collar you.”
“S’Rak! You mustn’t! A Loftoni doesn’t sacrifice himself for his Valer. It’s the other way around.” Jisten sat down on the bed, still attempting to cover himself.
“That is silly on many levels, Jisten. I will defend you as I please.” Rak noticed Jisten’s shy posturing. “Are you okay?” Concern colored his voice.
“I’m fine,” Jisten said, reminding himself that he’d been as intimate as was possible to be with this man. He scooted close to Rak and felt the beginnings of lust. He was sure some was his, and hoped some was Rak’s.
Rak admired the view openly and Jisten knew that surge of lust came from the outside. When Jisten scooted even closer, Rak responded by pressing against him. “Did you sleep well?”
“The best in my life,” Jisten said. “Guests apparently have the best beds. I can’t imagine the prince’s or king’s being better.” He reached out and lazily stroked a wing.
“I am sure that this bed would vanish were I to say anything about it, so it is now a secret we can share.” Rak winked at him.
Encouraged, Jisten stroked Rak’s back while the Loftoni’s hands caressed Jisten’s warm skin, apparently just to feel the silky texture of it. Rak even played with the dark hair on the Jisten’s chest. Jisten held Rak close and scratched his wingbases.
Rak melted against him. “That feels good,” he said, as if Jisten didn’t know how much he liked that. Jisten twined a long leg with Rak’s and drew him closer as they kissed deeply.
“How about a bath with healing salts?” Jisten asked when they came up for air. “They feel and smell good.”
Rak whispered in his ear, “How about you make passionate love to me instead?”